Saturday, January 30, 2010

Somtimes Words Just Fail Us

While driving to the funeral last Saturday, my husband and I sat in uncharacteristic silence, absorbed in our own thoughts.  Interestingly enough, we were wrapped in the same emotion: anger.  It did not seem fair that my cousin was experiencing such a tragic loss.  She is a good, loving, mom!

To top it off, we were going to the funeral with our 2-month-old infant.  To us, it seemed like flaunting our bounty.  I'm sure if we could, we would have left Manly home.


When I walked into the funeral home and saw my cousin, I didn't know what to say.  I did the only thing I knew how to do, I gave her a hug, several actually.

She inquired after Manly and asked to see him.  I saw the joy--and the hurt--in her eyes.  At that moment, I realized something: denying her the opportunity to see our baby would have added to her pain.

In trying to shield my cousin from more hurt, I would have added to it.  I am grateful that we did take Manly.  I am grateful that she was able to see our son.  I am grateful because I know it comforted her, in some small way.


As we proceeded to the graveside service, Ben offered profound insight.

"Amber, we are angry and we have no right to be angy. "

"What do you mean?"

"J and K have a right to be angry.  Yet, they aren't.  Yes, they are sad.  Yes, their hearts ache.  Yet, through this experience, they have acquired a more intimate knowledge about the Plan of Salvation and they cling to this belief.  They have faith.  Our anger is, in some ways, bringing more pain into this service.  We need to focus on them, rather than ourselves."


J dedicated the grave.  His words echoed what Ben had said.  His beautiful prayer-- and faith-- provided me with hope.


I have tried to write this post in many ways.  There are just no words to adequately describe the funeral and graveside service.  Nothing that can justify the pain J and K are experiencing.

What amazes me was how they comforted those around them.

I can only end this by sharing my testimony.  As you know, I am a Mormon.  I believe, we believe, that their is a life after this one.  We believe that families are Eternal.  We believe that we will meet loved ones in the next life that we have lost in this life.

I know that this knowledge comforts J and K.  The sorrow will never disappear.  The sadness will always be present.  Yet, they find peace in their belief--and knowledge-- of Eternal families.

J and K--I am sorry for your loss.  I love you and will  continue to pray for you.  Thank you for allowing us to take part such a treasured service.


  1. Your words brought me to tears. Such a profound and painful and unimaginable loss -- and yet such grace in accepting it.

  2. It is a horrible loss. I would have had the same reservations about bringing Manly; I'm glad he gave your cousin comfort.

    I remember feeling the same way when our friend Frank came to dinner at our house, several months after he'd lost his wife, daughter and son in a tragic accident. I contemplated sending the girls to a sitter that night, but in the end, I kept them home. They made Frank smile, and he played with them. It was bittersweet, for sure, but he said it did him good.

    Thinking of them, and you. It's in times like these that faith is a blessing.

  3. How beautiful that they comforted other people at the time when everyone expected to comfort them.

  4. I have been thinking of your cousin, her family, and you all week. I am glad that the power and beauty of the service brought all of you some comfort in a comfort-less time.

  5. Beautiful words. I hope that J and K read your blog. Keeping you all in my prayers.

  6. I have had three friends loose their babies and it was a similar situation where their faith and calmness brought peace to the rest of us.

    In those most painful and difficult of times is when the Savior carries us, and in His arms we have the strength to do what we need to do.

    My heart goes out to your cousin and you family.

  7. Wonderful, humble words. I hope J and K read these words and that in doing so they realize how loved they are. I am so sorry for your heartache and loss. Because, yes, it is their loss. But it is also yours.

  8. I don't know why some people experience this sort of pain and grief in this life. It seems so senseless. But then I think of our Heavenly Father and the children he has lost, and I wonder if it's a preparation of sorts. Or at least, I way of in some small way coming to understand our Heavenly Father better...

  9. What lovely words Amber. I can not imagine this type of loss, I really can't but I know having someone like you, who is so giving and thoughtful would help. I'm so glad they found comfort in your son and that their beliefs are helping them through these difficult days. Thinking of you.


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