6 Years On: Grief, Life, Love

Oh my, time flies. It’s amazing how things change and some remain the same.

6 years ago, I didn’t know if I would ever be okay and not think about my dad every living moment. It sounds extreme, but I was heart broken. But time, and God,  they have a way of healing your heart. Over the years, the grief has changed. It has felt different and been different. During my last trip to the beach, I sat next to Ksena at the shore and the we played with the water. She enjoyed the little waves tickling her toes. When the waves got stronger she squealed with joy that the water was splashing on her back. Then out of nowhere, an innocent looking wave came, and it was bigger than we thought, but I yanked her up in time and we stared at the wave as it crashed.

Grief is like the ocean, sometimes your heart is calm, and then other times, when you least expect it, sorrow rocks up and is literally a wet blanket, and you have to leave. For some reason, the last couple of weeks, Ksena has been asking me about my dad. Both her grandpas went to be with the Lord, so she doesn’t quite understand the concept of grandpa. So we’ve had to talk about what happens when we die. I’m yet to find a simple way to explain the complexity that is death. Somewhere after one of our conversations, a wave, a mighty big wave hit me, and I felt a sadness and longing, and soon after a peace.

Life. Goes. On.

That’s what I wish I could tell myself 6 years ago. That the eyes that were filled with tears of sadness would one day be filled with tears of joy. My emotions have been confused. On one hand I’m remembering my dad 6 years on, and 8 days later, I am celebrating the milestone of Ky being 6 months old. They are both big things in my life that elicit a myriad of emotions.

But I read something a few days ago that really captured what my heart had been trying to articulate to my brain over and over.

no amount

Ain’t that the truth!

I use the term here achievement here loosely, because, I know that motherhood is not an achievement, it is stewardship, and I will be held accountable. My point is, being a mum fills my heart with joy but it doesn’t erase the pain, sadness of losing a parent. Each is a big deal, they both carry weight.

theres a time

The reality is that each day that passes we are closer to the grave. Tomorrow is not a guarantee. I don’t know much about the complexities of life, but I know this, that I don’t want to die with dreams and plans that I never executed. So I’m taking steps each day to ensure that I die empty, having done what the Lord placed me on earth to do.

Live-Full.-Die-Empty.-Success-Daily-Reminder-khairilsianipar

I am not alone! This is truth that I’ve had to remind myself over and over when in the depths of grief. Over the years I have realized that love is a doing word. It’s more than just an emotion or a phrase that is tossed around. It is an action. Love is present and not passive. God has been there.

I can attest to the fact that God’s love has carried me. My daily prayer is that I will understand His love, continually experience it and be made complete with the fullness of life and power that comes from Him.

Ephesians 3:18-19 New Living Translation (NLT)

18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

I”m currently listening to this song on replay. It’s my declaration.

6 years later, I say  Thank you Jesus for your love. Siyabonga. You know the depths of my heart, where it aches and longs, and I know that You are there. Right there in the stillness; and your peace and joy will replace the sadness that ebbs and flows.

He is the Father to the fatherless! My God. He is faithful. Forever.

Today I celebrate life! #DKM

Blessings,

Bibi2be

 

I Need You!

I never thought that I’d enjoy my own company, I was so used to being around people and having a community was a comfort zone. I highly suspect that I learned this from my mum, she’s had a good circle of friends for many years. Then I had to learn how to survive without too many people. I’ve come a mighty long way, ask my husband 🙂 I can now hang out by myself, and actually enjoy it.

IMG_20170320_085430

My last trip to the ocean was very contemplative. I walked right into the water as the girls played with sand and begun to pray. I prayed that God would help me a better wife and mother. Writer. Then after I rumbled about each of these roles, I prayed that I would be who He created me to be. It came after all the explanations.

As I shared with hubs about our swim in the ocean, my prayer time and thoughts on life, he said that if I am the woman God created me to be, all these other things and roles will fall right into place. I walked away in silence, not in a rude ‘huff and puff’ manner, but one that said, ‘Selah, I’ma just go to my corner and think about all of that truth’.

It’s so easy to get absorbed by the roles that I play, so busy doing and forget about being. Even as life is getting busier, I realize the importance of pausing and seeking His face. Our eyes must remain on Him, not easily distracted by the fleeting things of this world. Our hearts must remain stayed on Him. Our faith in Him. He alone is God. We need Him on good days as much as we need Him on bad days.

I’ve been singing this song for the past couple of weeks. It’s been my daily declaration that I need God. I need Him.

Where will I go without, Your hand holding me
And How could I live without You I can’t see
Lord, what will I do with Life where will I go
How would I handle things All that I know
Cos’ I Fail, Again

I Fall, I Fall so short, so short
You Know, You know my End Lord
From the start, You know my heart
I Need You

Life happens. Seasons change. But the fact remains, I need you.

Blessings,

Bibi2be

 

 

Morning Reflections: Remain Fluid, Always

The ocean is my happy place. When I moved to Mombasa, I used to wonder how and why the people who lived here didn’t frequent the ocean. Then I got comfortable, became one of ‘them’, my ‘let’s go to the ocean’ plans became sparse. I guess after a few months, it became the norm, sort of like Uhuru park 🙂

Yesterday morning, I went for a walk on the beach and I was just so blown away. It was so nostalgic! Reminded me of the love that I had for God when I moved to Mombasa. Please don’t get me wrong, I still love Jesus. Though life was different then. But I was reminded to remain fluid regardless of the season in life. To always be available for the Spirit of the Lord to blow me in the direction that he pleases. Having the waves crash at my feet was an example of what He can do with a fluid heart.

IMG_20170320_085430

I left so recharged and in awe of God. I kept singing this song.

Oh that I will search for Him and find Him, everyday, in the big things and the little things.

We serve a big God!! He deserves all of our praise. May our life songs sing to Him.  Standing by the ocean humbled me. My response was YES! Yes, I will go where you send me, even across the fence, the nations and oceans. Obedience begins where I’m at, it’s not a destination but a state of being.

IMG_20170320_085202 (2)

Here’s to many more walks by the ocean, many refreshing reflections and an irresistible love for Jesus that oozes into every part of my life.

Remain Fluid, Always!

Blessings,

Bibi2be

2016: Tried and Tested. Yet I Still Believe

The last couple of days have disoriented me. I’ve been too tired to cry. 2016 has been a roller coaster with really good days and some really sad, dark ones too. It’s had it’s share of trials and tests and I’ve had to keep reminding myself that this is not new.

download-17

 

This December I read the Christmas story using the Advent reading plan; it was a beautiful time of reading. This verse really stood out for me.

peace

Some versions say, “He will be the source of our peace.” During the last couple of days, this verse has resonated with me. Life has made me feel anxious, antsy, angry, agitated. But I’ve been reminded to keep my focus on Jesus for He is the source of my peace.

A few days ago, as I put Kyria to bed, I heard the Holy Spirit ask me, ‘Do you believe?’. I said, “I believe, help my unbelief. The truth is even in the midst of the darkness, I still believe, though doubt sometimes floods my heart; I know in the depths of my heart that He is for me.

This song came to mind and it has been my declaration since.

I don’t need to see the bigger picture to believe what God says. By faith I can speak and see a thing.

I’m going into 2017 , not limited by what I’ve seen in 2016 but believing that His word is true, that there is so much that I can do. I’m believing that because He said it in His word, it settles it in the earth.

Through the trials and tests, I still believe that He is for me and I am safe in His arms. So I have chosen to give up my pride and turn away from arrogance. I’m not concerned with great matters or subjects too difficult for me. I have stilled and quieted myself in His embrace, just as a child; just as my sweet Ky is still in her mother’s arms.

131

Here’s to 2017!

God  is on the throne my dear friends, here’s to many more adventures in Him and with Him.

Happy new year!!!

Thank you for journeying with the K’s and I ❤ I’m excited to see where the Lord orders our steps!!

Blessings,

Bibi2be

 

Lessons From The Pit

Life is a teacher.

teacher

 

This phrase came up in a conversation I had with a friend yesterday. It was so timely. It summarised exactly where I was at.

A little background, after I had Miss K, I was a walking train wreck. Things did not go according to plan, my dream of a vaginal birth ended up in ‘ I’m sorry Esther, you are still at 6 cms (8 hours later). It is Cervical Dystocia. We have to have an emergency cesarean section’. I crumbled. This. Was. Not. The. Plan. I cried ( if you’ve been reading my posts for a while, you can tell that my eyes are cleansed often 😉 I was scared. Disappointed. Ready for the pain to end immediately. Because those contractions had me calling Jesus in every language I knew.

The after was difficult. She was jaundiced. She HATED phototherapy. The little incubator was called ‘Hawaii’. You go in clad in a diaper only and get a tan. Her cries woke up the other babies in the nursery. It was bad. Miss K dislikes the heat, imagine Hawaii in Mombasa. I think there were two days she spent more time out of Hawaii than in it. This mama was tired. The cries were ruining my ‘honeymoon’ phase. I couldn’t even stare into her eyes because they were bandaged. Let’s not even get into the squint that formed because the patches were letting in light ( story for another post).

I was not ready for the after. So I stopped. I stopped doing the things that I loved.

Then we discovered that she was a high need baby. Guys (she uses this word a lot now) THIS. WAS. HARD!! Wondering what a high need baby is? Check this out.

I sunk into a pit. I remember one day my husband found me wailing on the bed. I could barely speak. My world seemed grim. I was physically exhausted, mentally and spiritually drained. I had stopped living. I was merely existing. This experience of bringing forth life was draining me of life. I was dying; dead on the inside. And I didn’t know how to get out of the pit of darkness. I struggled for months on end. I had stopped writing. Stopped doing the things that made me feel alive.

img-20161104-wa0000

I don’t know what the days to come hold, but I know who holds me.

I’m not afraid to ask for help. If you see me slowly dashing in the supermarket (in my mind I’ll be moving at super speed, my legs may be moving much slower) know that it’s just me being proactive.

Staying indoors depresses me. So I will go out, look at the ocean. Enjoy some sunshine with the girls. I will write. I will live. By God’s grace, I will stay out of the pit. Even if it tries to draw me back, I know that God is able. It’s so easy to slip into the pit but so difficult to get out. The longer you stay inside, the deeper you sink. Only the hand of the Almighty can raise you out.

Postpartum depression is real. God’s love, grace and mercy are real too.

Here’s to applying the lessons learned in the pit. And trusting that the God who rescued us, is able to sustain us.

Say hello to Mr. Octopus, my crafting with Miss K of the day. My little reminder that I am still alive.

img_20161104_105945

For any mama going through the pit, I pray that the Lord will rescue you. May He be the fourth man, as He was with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.

Blessings,

Bibi2be

 

Echoes, Colors and Freedom

It’s quite fascinating to watch toddlers grow. Their curiosity and eagerness to learn is beautiful to watch. They question and seek to understand the grande and mundane. Everything is fascinating, the grandeur of an old tree and the way crabs walk in the sand. I am enjoying this stage of questions, because it also forces me to think about why I believe what I believe about certain things. As I teach and answer, I try not to pass on any biases I may have picked up along the way, as they are not the truth.

curiosity

Miss K’s fascination for the last couple of months has been echoes. She can now recognize acoustics, and every time we enter a room or stairwell that reflects sound, she shouts “ECHO!” and waits to hear “echo echo echo” fade in the background. It’s a cheap thrill, the look of glee tells you that happiness is an inside job.

I’ve had a series of difficult days of the past couple of weeks, where I’ve felt like I was drowning or in an empty room. In the height of those days, I’d find her shouting ‘ECHO!’ in my bathroom and wonder why? Why echoes make her so happy. The truth is that echoes didn’t fascinate me as much as they do Ksena until the day I had a little revelation.

In audio signal processing and acoustics, echo is a reflection of sound that arrives at the listener with a delay after the direct sound. The delay is proportional to the distance of the reflecting surface from the source and the listener. Typical examples are the echo produced by the bottom of a well, by a building, or by the walls of an enclosed room and an empty room. A true echo is a single reflection of the sound source. This is the definition from  Wikipedia.

The distance to the source matters. Even in the dark and empty spaces, it is important for God to remain my source. It’s crucial that I remain close to Him, so that His word and truth may echo in my heart and mind.

From that day, I begun to pray that as I draw close to God, His truth and love will echo in every empty place I find myself in. That it will bounce off every wall of my being.

I have seen God bring color into the room, He has brought color into my life, wiped away the dullness and darkness. As His truth has reflected off surfaces, it has made a home in my heart. This song has blessed me in this season.

If you are in a dark space or you feel like you are drowning in a well, I pray that the Lord’s truth and promises will echo endlessly until your heart, mind and your whole being believes Him. I pray that God will walk into the room and bring new color into your life and wipe away the dullness.

8-32

May His truth set you free. Free to rise up above everything that has held you down and free to be all that He created you to be.

Blessings,

Bibi2be

True Satisfaction

One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating. ~Luciano Pavarotti

I really enjoy uninterrupted mealtimes. It gives me time to savor the food and enjoy it. The first couple of months of being a mom taught me the art of gobbling my food down. Getting full was the priority, enjoying the food was an after thought. There is a difference between eating to get full and eating to be satisfied, you know, enjoy the meal and lick your plate clean with a sated sigh.

food

Dining and living are not very different from each other. The way that you can eat just to quiet the hunger pangs is the same way you can go about your days just for the sake of living, without true satisfaction. The bible gives us more insight on this.

In John 4, Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman as the disciples went to get food. When they got back, they were surprised that Jesus wasn’t eating the food they had brought.

31 Meanwhile, the disciples were urging Jesus, “Rabbi, eat something.”

32 But Jesus replied, “I have a kind of food you know nothing about.”

33 “Did someone bring him food while we were gone?” the disciples asked each other.

34 Then Jesus explained: “My nourishment comes from doing the will of God, who sent me, and from finishing his work.”

Verse 34 is so profound. True satisfaction and nourishment come from doing God’s will, because we live for an audience of ONE and finishing it. In the journey of life, I have found myself starting projects that I know fall under ‘doing God’s will’ but I fail to finish them and move onto other things. Then I wonder why I am not truly satisfied.

Hunger

Do you find yourself bouncing from one project to another but still feel dissatisfied with life?

What is it that God has called you to do?

Go against the grain {no pun intended} (: ,do the will of God, and let Him satisfy you.

Have a blessed weekend,

Bibi2be