I won’t lie.  Today has been hard…emotionally hard…and long.  A birthday of a loved one who has passed is the total opposite of regular birthday.  There are tears instead of laughter and loneliness instead of gathering.

I took flowers and put them on his graveside.  I sat next to the headstone and watched the flowers sway in the breeze, and swept the ants away from the granite.  I cried.

I know that he’s not there.  I knew he wasn’t in that body when we buried him.  I rejoice in that and the beautiful place he now resides in spirit with our Heavenly Father.

But I’m here and he’s not.  I can’t help how I feel.  I expect it to get easier every year, and today I almost made it to the end without falling apart.  I know that Jesus knows how I hurt because Jesus too, wept over the loss of a friend.

Today, I attended church, sang in the choir during two services.  I wasn’t blessed with a beautiful voice, but God bestowed on me the love of singing.  I wish I could express how singing lifts me up and makes my soul leap.   I find comfort in the words of praise and message in hymns at church.  I lunched with lovely friends who hugged me in comfort.  I spent time with friends in conversation,   However, my heart is still saddened.  I have prayed and asked Jesus to lift me up and help me over today’s brokenness.

Why should today be any different from normal days?  I don’t have the answer to that.  I just know today I feel his loss more.  Birthdays are suppose to be special days to celebrate each other through another year.  The anniversary of his passing is also hard to get through.  When he left me and made that tremendous transformation to be with God.

“So, we are always confident and know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord.  For we ‘walk by faith, not by sight.’ and we are confident and satisfied to be out of the body and at home with the Lord.”  

2 Corinthians 5: 6-8

In one hour this day will be over and I’ll put back on my big girl panties and I’ll suck it up and move on.  Tomorrow, I’ll once again be smiling and teaching.  I’m thankful that this day fell on the weekend where the day could be mine alone to do as I wanted.

I’m sad that I didn’t hear from any of John’s family.  I can only imagine that they grieved their loss of him today also.  No, it wasn’t a joyous day.  No kidding about being another year over the hill, bodies falling apart, and pointing out wrinkles.  No laughter, no cake, and no candles.

In heaven, I can only imagine that everyday is a celebration, filled with peace and singing.

I love you, John.

“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.”

John 10:27-29