....Life will be a journey, perhaps not the journey you expected...

Friday, November 27, 2009

NOT Thankful this Thanksgiving

Thoughts on a sad Thanksgiving for my small family and me. Somehow Sarah Palin found her way into my heart while I was reading. I surmised that my husband gave me this book in order to distract me from my sorrow.

Nearly half way through the book, the nuts and bolts of her early life experiences, the inside story of her romance and the events leading her to a political career kept me reading. Hungry for information surrounding how she got onto the McCain/Palin ticket, I promised myself not to skip ahead in the book where all that campaign information waited. Regardless of political affiliation my curious nature leads me to read about people on all sides of the political spectrum. I suppose I tend to be a political 'independent' and like to hear both sides of the arguments. Unsuspectingly, I was struck between the eyes with one of the most powerful passages in the book. In fact, I didn't feel the need to read further (though I did) to truly understand the real Sarah.

Her description of her decisions surrounding the news that her unborn child, Trig, would be born with Downs Syndrome truly blew me away. Her decision not to abort this imperfect child, when abortion would have made life much easier, provided me with a special lense through which to view this woman. In particular, Sarah’s private letter to her family and friends preparing them for the arrival of this ‘special’ child... provided a spiritual insight into her heart. She wanted them to know about the specialness of Trig before he was born. She wrote that letter from the point of view of God. How would He write that letter to their family regarding the arrival of Trig? The letter was beautiful.

She reminded me that God’s ways are not always our ways. His decisions do not always coincide with what we have predetermined as our most convenient path. He doesn't not always have in mind for us...what we have in mind for us.

She made me consider writing a similar letter to myself. Yes, a letter to me from God. I need a letter from Him to explain why our 19 year old daughter senselessly lost her life to a gun accident two months ago. The gun fell from the car, discharged and killed her. There is no explanation that will ever make sense to me. The loss to our whole family has been devastating. If I received a letter from God, what might He say to me regarding the loss of my beloved daughter?

Truthfully? Thanksgiving was filled with tears. Tears that salted our food. An empty chair at the table. Grace that was too hard to say. Attempts to pump each other 'up' just like football players do to each other on all the Thanksgiving day games. I've been angry at God. Why us? There is so much pain.

Craft a letter from God? That will take some insightful thinking. Thank you Sarah. Just when I thought I was reading a book about politics, I found out I was considering opening myself up to receive a message from God. I haven’t been open to that since she died. Hopefully I (He) will find the right words.

Book: Going Rogue by Sarah Palin (a birthday gift from my husband)
I highly recommend reading the letter Sarah wrote. It is included in the book.

One of Marsha's two daughters daughters (19 years old) was killed in a gun accident in Sept ‘09. She maintains a facebook page titled A New Journey, dedicated to helping grieving parents. She lives with her husband in the Pacific Northwest.