If you have a young girl at home, you’ve probably had plenty of opportunities to watch Disney’s Frozen and to accumulate some favorite (and not so favorite) lines that run through your head at odd moments. Tonight, Princess Anna’s line about her volatile and reclusive sister keeps running through my head (“She’s a stinker!”) because it so aptly describes grief.
Just when I’m feeling pretty good and start to think that I have mastered being a grieving parent, the sorrow pummels me again and I am filled with sadness. Sadness because I miss my child. Sadness because I love the age from eight months to two years and I don’t get to enjoy that time with my second daughter. Sadness because my family will never be all together in this world. Sadness for my friend who is grieving her son’s death. Sadness for all the little ones who we don’t get to know on this side of Heaven. Sadness because change happens before I have appreciated the things that change. Sadness for our world and all of the hatred it holds. Sadness because of evil and sin.
Its a deep, deep sorrow that leaves me standing, mute before God. I can’t offer Him my thoughts because I can’t hold onto a thought long enough to be truly aware of it. I can’t offer Him my words because I don’t have any – I just cling to His words. I can’t even offer Him my feelings because the sadness is so empty that it feels like a colossal hole full of nothingness.
But somewhere in the depths of my soul I hear the words of St Therese of Lisieux saying, “I wish to give all to Jesus, since He makes me understand that He alone is perfect happiness. All!–all shall be for Him! And even when I have nothing, as is the case to-night, I will give Him this nothing . . .”* and I know that, for right now, placing my nothingness in His hands is all that I need to do.
*From The Story of A Soul – The Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux as quoted on https://www.ecatholic2000.com/therese/sos18.shtml