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I woke up yesterday and felt something I’ve not felt in sometime.

Joy.

I felt it today too.

I don’t know what to think of that.

Is this it? Is the deep aching in my heart forever mended? Is the place where sorrow lived now washed over with unexplainable joy?

Honestly, I don’t know if I’m ready for joy.

I don’t know joy.

I do know sadness, loss, disappointment, heartache, and grasping onto just about anything to keep his memory alive.

Joy doesn’t seem appropriate in a season of grieving.

I stand at the kitchen counter and toss cut fruit in the blender trying to grasp a life of joy without a loved one. And somewhere between throwing the peels away and drinking my smoothie I find my greatest fear is to never again weep over him.

How do I live with joy?

I feel lost without grief.

I am strangely torn between keeping a tight grip on sadness and embracing this joy.

But if I refuse joy it will not be the deep sadness that will prevail—it will be bitterness. I’m sure of it. And a heart and life of bitterness is far from the life I ultimately desire—one of wholeness and freedom.

And just as I take deep breaths through the many moments of sorrow I have felt, I breathe in joy…

And then the tears come.

And I am in it all over again.

Hot tears exhaust me from my eye lids to the most inner part of my soul. And I feel the familiar despair well up in my heart. And I wonder if there will ever be a moment when the loss does not consume me so greatly. When will I not feel the grief constrict the flow to my brain and even my soul? When will the ache subside for just a moment for me to catch my breath once again?

When will joy return to this aching heart?

Grief is such a mystery.

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