what i learned from mary stuart.

when my dad died last fall, there were several people in my life who were extremely supportive and encouraging. one of them was mary stuart. and she taught me a really helpful lesson.

when you lose someone who is a huge part of your life, you experience many emotions. at least i did. at times i felt mad at the circumstance. i felt annoyed. i felt thankful for the promise of heaven. i felt peace. i felt disappointment. mary taught me that its ok to feel all of those things. she told me many times that is perfectly acceptable to be honest with your emotions. its ok to be mad at god’s plan, or to tell him that you are disappointed with how things turned out. mary is no stranger to loss, and she knows what i’ve been going through.

people would often tell me “its ok, he’s in heaven!” or “everything happens for a reason.” mary never said any of that crap. probably because she knew how it felt. she always encouraged me and supported the way i was feeling, whether it be mad, sad, disappointed, or peaceful.

i have had a hard time lately, for obvious reasons. losing my dad and a best friend six months apart is pretty rough. i feel like i’m dealing well…focusing on the fact that i know they are in heaven, they are not in pain, and they are experiencing great joy. i have felt the prayers of my loved ones and have been showered with an insane peace. i can’t explain how i’ve gotten through this whole ordeal…the only thing i can say is that God certainly has something to do with it. or everything to do with it.

it gets annoying when people tell me to feel a certain way, especially people who have no idea what i’m going through. i don’t need people to tell me to be thankful or to focus on positive things. its unfair for someone to tell me to ignore my pain and be thankful for green grass and the sun in the sky. i face my pain head on, as mary taught me. i accept the fact that i have suffered two incredible losses this year. am i thankful? yes. extremely. i have an amazing family, two beautiful children, a roof over my head, food on my table, and a savior that gives me peace and walks alongside me. i will forever be grateful for these things. i am beyond blessed to have had the dad that i had. i would rather have had my dad for two years than had a crappy dad for fifty. and the same goes for dj. our fourteen year friendship is something i will hold on to always. but do i feel sad that i lost them both? yes, of course. and i will be honest with that sadness…i won’t hide it.

so thanks, mary, for what you’ve taught me. the lessons you learned through your losses have encouraged me through mine. i hope i can pass these lessons on to others, just as you have done for me.

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