Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey, I mean Jack and Margaret's Mom

I was spending time with a friend last week and we were talking about Jack's accident. I asked her why people think I have so much faith when I feel as if I have far less than I've ever had in my life. She responded, "It pours out of you, Anna. It's just there." Hmmm. Anger? I can see that pouring out of me right now. Disappointment? Got it. But faith? I'm not so sure.

I've been thinking about this a lot, because it is undeniable that Jack's death is having a profound spiritual effect on people by challenging them to look outside the comforts and conflicts of middle class suburban life and ask questions like, "Why did this happen?" "What does this mean to ME?" "When the body dies, is that IT?" "How does a family get through this?" "Why do bad things happen to good people?" and even, "Why do GOOD things happen to BAD people?" It is having this effect on me, too, just with a few more curse words thrown in.

Through this blog I've been honored to share many of the amazing signs of comfort from God that have followed Jack's death. Blog readers have graciously shared their own. These strange occurrences have again and again shown us that love does not die. That Jack's soul lives on. That what I said I believed...wow...is really true!

When I think of Jack's impact, and its spiritual emphasis, I think of prayer after prayer uttered in love and despair on our behalf since September, many from folks who wouldn't consider themselves to be "pray-ers" at all. Babies baptized. Young people looking for more than just transitory joy. Parents looking at their kids as gifts, not just as "gifted." People returning to church, or even going for the first time. Hurt, disillusioned souls being willing to open their hearts, just a little bit more, to a God they felt had let them down or deserted them. People receiving comfort at their own loved one's deaths with the promise of "something more." People wanting "what we have" even when we have lost so much.

When asked by someone why she had started attending church and reading the Bible, a dear friend of mine answered, "Why, Jack, of course!"

So... many, many people have felt drawn closer to God because of Jack, a boy who believed that, "Nothing is Impossible with God." For that I'm awestruck and grateful.

On the other hand, there are a lot of folks who have been thrust into a spiritual CRISIS over Jack's death. I get this too. It may sound so crazy, since terribly tragic and unfair things happen every second of every day and on a much larger scale, but "Why, God? Why Jack?" has been a common refrain.

My favorite Bible verse since I was a preteen has been, "I believe. Help my unbelief," and that is the tension or balance I have lived with every single day, although much more so since September 8th.

I think about how hard it is for me to take communion or to worship at church right now. For me, there's just one broken body I think about these days. Oh how broken. And not even broken to save the world.

So while there is hope and comfort and mystery and a peace that passes all understanding, there's also a profound sense of confusion, disappointment, and a need to realign what what we thought we believed, to what we believe. To hang in there in a life of faith, despite a lack of understanding and acceptance. Despite the trauma of going to a Memorial Day festival surrounded by every 7th and 8th grade boy in the tri-state area.

Closer to God/farther than ever. "I believe/ Help my unbelief." Comfort/despair.

Then thing is, I guess I CAN see what my friend sees, that even in this disappointment, there is some faith. My profound disappointment has an OBJECT-- an object big enough to handle my questions and my disappointment. A God who graciously gives me comfort even while withholding the answer to,"Why Jack?"

And here's the thing. I know I'm his mom saying this, but Jack matters. Not more than someone else. Not less. I am very fortunate for this blog, this forum, which not every bereaved parent has, in order to see the difference Jack makes, that each life makes.

And if in that mattering, or counting for something, we are driven to our knees in seeking God, or even driven to shaking our fists at him in anger, then that is an act of faith. And I think Jack would like that.


Ellen aka Ellie said...

I only know Jack through this blog, and I can assure you, he loves it.


Cassie Bustamante said...

anna, i also only know jack and you through this blog. but i can tell you that even though you hang in that balance... believing, yet sometimes not believing, your belief always comes through so much stronger. i ofte struggle with my own beliefs and my faith.... i pushed god away through college after some of my own struggles and losses and i didn't believe in someone who could let me go through such isolation and desperation, when i had always been a good person, or so i thought. and i had always believed- but where was he then? i didn't see him, but he was there, and he brought me to chris, and has lead me down so many roads that aren't always clear at the time. i know i am rambling but the point is, that when you can't see him, he is there. and when you can't see it in what you write, the rest of us do. you affirm my faith with every post you write.... and whether you want to be or not, you are an inspiration. sharing all of those signs you shared, i read them and i wondered, how could i have ever lost my faith? how? when there are signs from god such as this. you are a sign from god... a sign to me that we can survive and we can carry on legacies.

Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

I think it is your honest, raw wrestling with your faith in the midst of loss and grief that draws us to look to God. I mean, he's got to be a BIG God to handle all this pain and anger. And so he is.
I cry nearly every time I read your blog. I look for rare birds -- something I never did before. And I've never even met you. But I'll know your shining face in heaven by the double joy radiating from within and the proud boy standing next to you.

Anonymous said...

I am praying for your family on this stormy night.

Amanda said...

This is beautiful and something every grieving mom should read. I know you spoke of my heart in those words.

Katy said...

Yep, it's that constant push/pull between throwing yourself at God because you know it's the only source of comfort, to being so angry and disillusioned that God certainly doesn't care or he wouldn't have let *that* happen.

I don't know if it ever ends. I'm wondering if maybe when we're 80, we'll finally have achieved peaceful faith? If we live that long of course.

L said...

Yes, Jack would definitely like that. I love you. And Jack.

Annabelle said...

For myself, during a similar season of faith, I found the daily readings of a book called Diamonds In The Dust by Joni Eareckson Tada to be pointedly apt.

Perhaps it will bless you (and others) as well.

Renee said...

From having met Jack at school, and through getting to know him more via your blog, I often find myself asking, "Why Jack?!?" as well. Nothing makes sense about having your ever-so-cautious, tender-hearted Jack leave this world so soon. Nothing. My heart hurts for your family.
Even though I read your posts through tear-filled eyes, I can always walk away feeling encouraged about the God we serve and how He takes care of us all in different ways. Whether it be "winks" from above or having the right person say the right thing at the right time, He is alwyas there.
One final thing: Guitar skills or no guitar skills, I'm sure all the girls in Jack's class had a crush on him whether he knew it or not....who wouldn't?! He was such a cutie. :-)
God Bless and daily prayers,

Megan {The Brick Bungalow} said...

I was thinking of you and your blog the other day and wondered what your beliefs are after the accident. We lost my brother due to cancer a year ago and have wondered the whole time as to why him. We are not religious people and have trouble accepting many people's thoughts/reactions of "God needed another angel." That actually pisses us off a lot in many ways. So as I was thinking about him and loss in general, I wondered what other people, more religious people, feel after they lose someone close to them at an untimely age. I started thinking about your Jack and then, here's your blog and your stance on things. I just don't understand how perfectly good guys can be taken at such an early age. I'm glad you have your faith, even if you don't feel that you do. Everyone needs something to help get them through some of the most horrible times in their lives.

L said...

Me again to respond to Megan. That pisses me off, too. Hugs to you.

A Speckled Trout said...

I have a push/pull with my faith every single day of late, and my God are Catholic bishops the biggest idiots in the land these days? I hold on often by the tips of my fingers and sometimes I think it's only because if I didn't I'd squander the opportunity to see my dad again.

You are a brave, honest writer.

Claire Plante said...

I was thinking of you and Tim and Margaret a lot on Monday while I was at the festival and hoping that you were hanging in there and doing o.k.

Your writing about faith is so thought provoking. I have felt that tension/pull you write about, and I have always felt that "non-belief" required as much faith as "belief." Absolute certainty for one over the other is a feeling that I have never had, so your verse makes so much sense and for me validates the search and the trying.

I just wish you did not have to write about these issues (or do anything!) with Jack's death as the backdrop. As always, my heart aches and I think about and pray for you three all the time.


booksandcandy said...

I have been struggling with faith for a few years now it's more of how do I pray now? When I don't feel my prayers are being answered and are so rudely shot down. ( I probably just made God really mad with that statement) anyway I am not sure if I have asked you or any of your followers but do you think you can have belief without the faith?

Unknown said...

I have been faced with so much unrest with my faith lately. Even wrote about it today as I have my kiddos who question the loss of my brother. I struggle going to mass each week. I can only imagine the hurt and anger you have. But you show up. You come to this blog with a an open heart. You share what is real. You long to feel a new normal in a way that honors Jack and yourself. That is faith. That is strong faith.

DawnGes said...

Dear Anna,
Your authenticity is beautiful, and I'm grateful for your honest acknowledgement of your faith and doubts.

Much love and prayer to you today and always...

Laura at Ms. Smartie Pants said...

I see your faith when you keep on, keepin on. We all say we would stay in bed and pull the covers over our head and never come out if something like this happened to us and although I suspect you feel that way many days... you don't do it! You show us what it looks like to put one foot in front of the other and not let death be the last word. You honor Jack in everything you say and everything you do. All of those feeling of anger and doubt are understandable, we all have them, it's what we do with them that makes the difference. Sure you could shut out the world and live in that pain and anger, have a cold heart and make a life that way but you know that isn't what Jack would want for you or your family. You say you are lucky to have this venue to share, I say we are lucky! I have never seen such honesty and soul searching. You say things that I hope I never forget for as long as I live. It's people like you who are my champions, who show me how to live out my faith!

Anonymous said...

Dear Anna,

You have been able to articulate how many of us feel when we experience things in life that are just too big for us. The line between faith and 'unbelief' is fine and we are constantly being tested.
Your thoughts and words give us an insight to how someone who has experienced a devastating, life changing event walks that fine line. For you writing is a means for you to express your thoughts and feelings and share beautiful memories of your boy. For us it is a glimpse into how hope, faith and belief still exist when life gets too big.
Always thinking of you Anna.....

Anonymous said...

"Broken promises don't upset me. I just think, why did they believe

-- Jack Handey

I'm so sorry you had some rough moments this weekend at the festival. My heart goes out to you.

I believe that God keeps his promises, and that you are making Jack extremely proud.

Anonymous said...

Came across this today and had to share. Hope you don't mind. Millie xx

A Pair of Shoes”
Author Unknown

I am wearing a pair of shoes.
They are ugly shoes.
Uncomfortable shoes.
I hate my shoes.
Each day I wear them, and each day I wish I had another pair.
Some days my shoes hurt so bad that I do not think I can take another step.
Yet, I continue to wear them.
I get funny looks wearing these shoes.
They are looks of sympathy.
I can tell in others eyes that they are glad they are my shoes and not
They never talk about my shoes.
To learn how awful my shoes are might make them uncomfortable.
To truly understand these shoes you must walk in them.
But, once you put them on, you can never take them off.
I now realize that I am not the only one who wears these shoes.
There are many pairs in this world.
Some women are like me and ache daily as they try and walk in them.
Some have learned how to walk in them so they don’t hurt quite as much.
Some have worn the shoes so long that days will go by before they think
about how much they hurt.
No woman deserves to wear these shoes.
Yet, because of these shoes I am a stronger woman.
These shoes have given me the strength to face anything.
They have made me who I am.
I will forever walk in the shoes of a woman who has lost a child.

Anonymous said...

"And if in that mattering, or counting for something, we are driven to our knees in seeking God, or even driven to shaking our fists at him in anger, then that is an act of faith"

This. My niece died in November, and her death completely shattered my faith in God. But somewhere in the midst of all that grief and despair, I realized I was angry at God. And that meant I still believed. I've been clinging to that thought ever since.

tnutt said...

I have had faith in God since I can remember. It has been tested, but not nearly like yours. Tears come to my eyes just thinking of going through that kind of pain, but I do see your faith in the midst of it all. I hope that when I am tested (God says we all will be), I will remain faithful as you have (even though you don't always feel you have been). I have been so moved by your story. I was not a reader of your blog until after Jack's passing. I found you through Momastery and AnyMommy. Several times over the last month, I have been prompted to write a comment and haven't, but I just had to give in today. I truly believe God is prompting me to have you read 1000 Gifts by Ann Voskamp. I think it will be a hard read, but I believe it may help. I don't know for sure...I just know I felt like I needed to post this for you. You and your family and friends are in my prayers. Hugs!

Stefanie said...

Anna, I do get so much out of reading everything you have to write. I love that you are willing to share so much of yourself with us; you help more people than you will ever know.

After my father died, leaving my mother a young widow with four children, her minister asked her if she talked to God. Said my irreverent mother, "Yes, I say 'F@#$ you, God!'" to which the minister replied, "Well, at least you're still speaking to him!"

Keep writing...

Lizbeth said...

I didn't know Jack and I wish I did. You are in my thoughts more often than you know.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

I never thought of it like that Anna. You can still love someone even though you are angry with them. And sometimes the road you forge back from a place of anger gives you wisdom and an even greater love and appreciation for that relationship. Why would this be any different with God?

Love you.

Kristin said...

The idea of God as a person who looks down and controls everything, handing down gifts and punishments, just doesn't work for me and never has. If that were the case, God would be a truly vindictive person, more a cruel and arbitrary dictator than a loving savior.

But whether or not you have faith in the God of Christianity, you have displayed the deepest kind of faith there is during this crisis. Every awful circumstance presents us with two choices, to close us down and make us fearful and bitter and isolated, or to open us up to see that in our pain and vulnerability we are connected to every person on earth. You have so clearly allowed it to open and soften you, used it as a way to find your own humanity and to help others find theirs. This life can be cruel and arbitrary, but it is also magical and precious, and you have helped so many of us see that. In doing so, you have displayed the truest kind of faith--the faith that we are never alone, and that life and love are always a gift.

Anonymous said...

Amen, hope you find your place, it will come. Mary in NY

Anonymous said...

I commented last night, and returned because I like to see what others have to say in response to your posts, especially such a powerful one. (By the way, I worry I sounded a bit too light with my Jack Handey reference. My apologies if that didn't come out quite right...)

Your bravery, strength, and vulnerability are inspirational. I will be reflecting on what you said about communion and Jack's body for a very, very long time. My heart breaks that your heart has been broken in this terrible way, but somehow, YOU give me strength. May God bless you and your family.

Meredith Self said...

Thank you for sharing so openly a window to your experience...it serves as a mirror for so many to reflect on what beliefs they have and what beliefs they can let go of...

Sending so much love.

Gina said...


Another amazing post. Several thoughts went through my mind as I read it and I want to share them. They all don't particularly flow so I am just going to out them down no matter how random they may seem.

* When I think about struggling faith my mind goes back to the disciples. These men walked with Jesus and believed he was the Christ. Peter denied him three times. Thomas wouldn't believe that Jesus had actually been resurrected and that it was him until he saw the scars in his hands. How much more so we that "walk by faith and not sight".

*I remember reading a book years ago and the author mentioned an elderly couple whose only daughter had died in a car accident when she was a teenager and they could not get past their anger at God and someone gave them the passage in Isaih 57:1 "The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come." The thought that God will take someone from this earth to spare them from a future evil to come gives me a much for comforting picture of a loving father than a distant one who seems unaffected or unconcerned with our grief.

*I remember reading what Cheryl Salem said when her six year old daughter passed away of a brain tumor that even if God gave us an answer as to why that this side of heaven it would not satisfy and we would still question why.

*When I think about your life the scripture "Faith without works is dead" comes to mind. You are getting up everyday, putting one foot in front of the other, still going. I remember one of your post shortly after Jack's accident where you said you all went to his team's baseball game to support them. Not even sure I would have made it out of the driveway. Huge courage. You mentioned you have a hard time worshipping in church. But you know what? At least you are going to church.

Just some thoughts as I was reading your post. Love you and your sweet family! Still praying and will continue to!

K A B L O O E Y said...

I am never closer to belief than when I read your blog. I never live as a better person than when I think of Jack's example. I am never a better parent than when I think of your family's trial. Love from someone Jack helped.

Dana @ Bungalow'56 said...

Anna, you're words are always so eloquent. If they day were to ever arrive where my faith would be challenged in such a way. I hope that my faith affords me the ability to continue to believe. Even without crisis I struggle. So your words? They are important. They make me want to find a way to become stronger. For this I thank you.

ALI said...

I agree, you and Jack have strengthened my belief and helped encourage me to reach out to God & His Word to teach my son.

I may get 10,000 questions, but I think of Jack's faith, and take a deep breath. I hope one day he has Jack's faith.

Erica said...

I thought of you on Sunday during the Memorial Day service at VPC, which was heart wrenching. Pastor Pete preached about "Remember, lest we forget." He talked about how those loved ones we have lost want us to remember them for who they were - their dreams, their accomplishments, their humor, their every day life. While he preached, I was staring out that big beautiful window and you wouldn't believe it but every five seconds or so a blue balloon flew up to heaven.

I've never met you or Jack, but I can tell you you've both made a profound impact on my life.

Lisa said...

Oh, the emotions are stirring around in me as I read this post. It is deep...and important to ponder these things. I loved the verse, "I believe. Help my unbelief." So perfect.

I think of you and your family so often....

Susie - Walking Butterfly said...

Faith is not the same as knowing. Knowing is an unquestionable knowledge of fact with not a sliver of doubt.
Faith involves trust because there IS some doubt, there IS some inner questioning. Faith is beautiful to God because it is based not on fact but on relationship. Even if the relationship is fluid.
People see your faith and are refreshed by it because it remains vulnerable and raw and simply REAL.
You have used this blog to both express your faith and your knowing and many are being refreshed by it. We love you and continue to pray for you Ana. Thank you.

Princess Kate said...

I watched my sister turn away from God 13 years ago when she lost her daughter. She gave up on God. It's been a real struggle for me to watch this play out in her life over the years. She doesn't teach her children about God's goodness either. It saddens me to watch an individual move thru life with no faith in God. Don't give up Anna. Giving up means you don't know where Jack is right now. I know with all my heart he is in God's loving arms safe and warm and waiting for you. Believe!!!!!

Ann Imig said...

This is an incredible post about the co-existence of beauty and pain.

You're incredibly gifted at identifying your thoughts and feelings and sharing them in a gentle and honest way that makes me really think.

Sending hugs and strength.

Heidi said...

Jack matters. Yes, he does.

I love your heart, your honesty. What powerful, poignant words. Thank you for letting us in.

LauraBeth said...

Tears, prayers, hugs, love.

Debby@Just Breathe said...

When I come here I ask God to help me with the words. To help me say something that will help you. I pray to Him to give you answers to the unknown yet we know those answers are not available until we go to Heaven. Signs are good, signs are small tokens to let us know that faith is real. I can cry for you, I can pray for you and I can imagine your pain but truthfully I know your pain is personal. I know it has to hurt beyond measure and I am so sorry for this. Your words always reach inside of me. You explain pain opening and I know how raw it is.
Thank you for for being yourself.
You know that we love you and want to help you in any way we can.

OSMA said...

Jack matters so much that we, your readers, interact with you, with each other, with our families and friends on a richer level than ever before. There is not one indifferent soul here.

And Anna, you have readers all over the world.

So the way I see it Jack actually is impacting the world. To love a boy most of us never met, to think of his family as though they are our own and to have the desire to comfort in the face of unimaginable despair.

That to me is a faith.

Hold on.

Theresa O said...

I think about you every day - whether it's the first of a holiday without Jack, whether it's a rainy horrible Thursday outside, a bird by my window, a butterfly, a rainbow, a boy named Jack on the opposite baseball team, or whether it's just Zach's smile flashing at me, wishing and wishing you could have that back. I ache for you, so many people do.
Jack Matters --- and always will. The world is a better place with your blog, and all your stories we have been so grateful for sharing....it has made us realize that with NO doubt Jack is around...his soul lives....and your community, your friends, complete strangers, believe that "Nothing is impossible with God" - thanks to Jack. I still have it posted all over my house, so Zach and I can remember that when we have a bad day...Many hugs and blessings.

Anonymous said...

It is my belief that Jack's soul has been reborn and he is living a new life using the experiences of his old life to guide him. What a lucky soul!

lotta joy said...

The death of a very dear and very close friend knocked me off my prayer pedestal.

When the minister crowed: "Now she's dancing with Jesus!"

I looked at her broken husband and forlorn children and wanted to kick that minister in the teeth.

Salvimom said...

Great posting Dear Anna.

I believe that this is a case of not seeing the forest for the trees. For you are among the trees right now, literally in the thick of it. But your continuous telling of your process is where the faith clearly comes pouring out, clearly to us that are outside of the trees. Sometimes you probably don't even catch on that you are living, breathing, EXUDING, faith. You are so full of faith even the blind would catch on. And I for one thank you immensely for it. I am one of those that is continuously seeing her children as gifts now more than ever. Your wake up call, albeit a horrible one, has caused all of us, your readers, to wake up as well. It has caused us to open our hearts and receive, as well as faithfully give our love, prayers and positivity back. God bless you and your familia as always. You are wonderful.


Geri said...

As always, beautifully, honestly written Anna. I could relate to the tension or balance you speak of, I believe/help my unbelief. I hear about God winks and I ask if God does that, why not give a full out God smile, and spare some lives here? I wish I knew, I don't. I am comforted by that line from Tennyson; there is more faith in honest doubt than in half the creeds, or something like that. Because I am filled with doubts, and at the same time, filled with a faith that there is something going on here that I won't ever understand. Thanks for sharing your journey with us, and for sharing Jack, who yes, does matter.

Anonymous said...


Here is a push/pull from me:

I have been reading your blog for many months. My son has seen me reading it and he has related to it, since he lost his cousin about a year ago, in a tragic accident. Some days we read it together. My son “knows” Jack.

My son made his sacrament of confirmation about a month ago. When I went shopping for him to find a special gift, the first thing I saw in the religious store was a stone with a saying stamped on it: “All things are possible.” Without hesitating, I purchased it for my son. My husband and I gave him a few gifts on his confirmation, but I saved the stone for last. It’s been a rocky road for my son to make his confirmation this year. As he wrestled with his faith, along with the rest of our family, there were days I did not think he would take the big step in his religious life; but he did take the step and I could tell the stone was important to him. He keeps it on his nightstand.

So, the push/pull? I wanted to share this with you because I think you do want to know about the impact Jack has made on the lives of people he never even met. On the other hand, I know that there are probably days when these comments don’t bring any comfort in comparison to your profound loss.

One more for you… I was walking with a friend the other day and we kept having birds pop up around us and startling us a bit. At one point, a young bird (probably just learning to fly) actually skimmed my friends arm as he/she flew right in front of us and landed on a guardrail. The little bird just sat there (probably as stunned as we were). My friend said, “What’s with the birds?” I just shook my head and smiled and thought of you know who!

Your faith abounds. Thoughts and prayers are with you, Tim and Margaret always.

Unknown said...

This might be my very favorite post of yours.

You have faith because you still believe that God exists and that he loves you in spite of your great loss. He doesn't ask for more than that. The countless, countless examples in the Bible of people who wrestled with God, and how patient and loving he was with them as they did give testimony that you are going in the right direction. No spiritual robots for God - real & honest even kicking and screaming!

I wish we lived closer.

Kris said...

Beautiful post and your friend is right. Your faith pours out of you; it does so on this blog. It does so in a raw, real way.

Jessica said...

I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to thank you for being so honest about what you're going through and let you know I'll be lifting your family up in prayer as well.

eedavig said...

People see your relationship with the Lord - which includes anger, confusion, frustration - these things are real emotions - part of being in relationship - both the good and the bad - God can (and will) handle it all - you ooze that faith, Anna - thank you for being REAL - how much God delights in YOU and your realness and how proud Jack is of you! Love you and your sweet Margaret and hubby too!

Unknown said...

I tried to post a comment a few weeks ago, but blogger ate it. :) I love that you are able to articulate such complex feelings. It's not unusual for me to laugh and cry while reading your posts. I have always struggled with the fear of losing one of my children. In truth there have been times that I have not allowed them to participate in an activity because of my (irrational) fears. There were times that I would cry for hours with worry over something happening to one of them, which drove my hubby crazy. Reading your blog has helped me release my kids a little bit - not that I'm going to encourage them to go bungee jumping, but I want them to embrace life without fear. I am grateful that you have bared your feelings because it allowed me to see that I was living a life of grief rather than gratitude. I don't understand the 'why' of Jack's death, but in your writing I understand the 'why' of Jack's brilliant life and that seems so much more important.

Alexandra said...

The miracle, the proof of your faith is that you have NOT lost your faith.

I have a friend, who had a son born with DS.

She said, after his birth, "There is no God." And she hasn't believed since.

I can't find my blog said...

I know this post is a little old, and I don't comment much but I want you to know how amazing you are. I see that it's not easy, that some days are better than others, but your words matter. To so many.

I love you, friend. Very much.

Domino said...

I don't believe in god. I don't believe in any god. To me, gods are not more real than the tooth fairy or Santa Claus. I haven't prayed in at least fourteen years when broadening my knowledge made clear to me that the tales religions preach (talking snake, pregnant virgin, the Earth only being thousands of years old) are beyond impossible. If there is a god, it's definitely nothing like any of the known religions portray it to be. I don't believe there is a greater explanation to life and happenings, other than they simply occur and there is nothing we can do about that. Of course, that doesn't make them any less important, but to me there's no divine reason for them to take place.

That being said, I do believe in a spiritual realm. I believe there is something after you die. Call it a different dimension, but I am convinced there's more to existence past death. That we carry on in some way not yet known to science. I know your Jack is there, somewhere timeless where none of the sorrows from this world exist, and where I know you will reunite with him again one day. I don't think the signs you've experienced are from god, I believe it's Jack's presence somehow still there. His love for you and yours is stronger than death itself.

You're often in my thoughts since I found your blog, and I have been making my way through the pages of the past three years since Jack's death. I'm always amazed by your strength. You are an incredible woman. Your blog has taught me so much not only about the love of a mother, but also the strength a human being can possess in the most harrowing circumstances.