I started my spring garden work yesterday. Yanked out old weeds. Poured in new compost. (Well, I suppose, technically, all compost is old, but you know what I mean.) I searched for comfort in the push-pull rhythm of mixing the soil. It felt good to be working outside. As my farmer father-in-law says, there's not much better than planting things and watching them grow. But my thoughts these days are always full of the Hartfeld family.
The world really does just continue right on though, even if your heart is broken or if you feel like you simply cannot take another step under the weight of it all. I plant my seeds and think about this time last year, when we first learned of Stacey's rare cancer. Of Jacob calling my husband to tell him while Stacey was still driving back from the doctor's office. Of Stacey cutting her long hair short to prepare for chemo. Of our two families going out to pizza, the same as any other time, except for the frequent use of our cameras as we tried to capture this last moment of normal life. I looked at the other families at the restaurant and thought, everything just goes on.
I don't even know what I'm writing today. I don't really want to write about the hard stuff but I can't write about the everyday stuff because the hard things are sitting in the way. It seems inane to chatter on about my garden or what our summer plans might be when a family is waiting. . .waiting to see what their new normal will be.
So I scurried out of the service trying to look totally normal, but apparently this is hard to do when tears are leaping from your eyes and puddling so that people around you are slipping and falling. It's not that I care so much if people see me cry, it's just that showing up at a church you don't go to anymore (without your husband because he's tending sick kids, but the people don't know this, of course), and then proceeding to burst into tears . . .that's rather hard to explain. Especially due to the infuriating tendency that crying has of interfering with simple articulation. Anyway, I didn't make it. A friend I hadn't talked to in ages caught me just as I reached the outer door to see what was wrong. I think I might have said something reassuring like, "Oh, sob, I'm sob sob sob, really fine soooob sob sob."
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