I told a lie today. Some college kids came to my front door this afternoon while my son was napping trying to raise money by selling books. At first they tried to sell me a cook book but Lord knows I have enough of those. I, of course, was friendly to them and made small talk. People don't go door to door very often anymore and I was curious about what they were up to. We chatted and they asked me a bunch of questions like how long have I been married and how long have I lived here? And then they asked me the question I have come to fear more than any other...
"How many children do you have?"
In a split second the answer sort of flew out of my mouth. "Three," I said. "Wow," they responded, "three kids in four years!" "Well, two of them are twins," I went on to explain, "I have a three year old little boy and identical twin daughters." I could tell that they were sort of looking around for them. Then without hesitation I said "they're all upstairs sleeping."
At that moment I felt myself float away. My body was still standing at my front door, but my mind was somewhere else. I no longer heard what they were saying or really cared. All I could think about was what I just said. Why did I say that?
I bought one of their books, a children's book of Bible stories, and sent them on their way. I closed the door and burst into tears. I could not bring myself to tell them that two of my babies were dead, but that was not the first time I held back telling the truth about Aubrey and Ellie. Sometimes it seems more appropriate to just leave it out, especially to strangers, but I have NEVER lied about them before. I was as surprised with myself as I was disappointed. What was I thinking? Why would I say such a thing?
It only took me about a minute to understand why I lied. I said my babies were sleeping because I wanted it to be true. For some reason at that moment I wanted to pretend that my babies were not in heaven but in their cribs. I wanted to speak their names and bring them back to life. For just a minute I wanted to stop missing them and feel normal again. But it didn't work. The lie only confirmed the truth. Their cribs were as empty as ever and my lie didn't provide even a second of relief from my heartache. I was in an unhealthy place.
I feel completely desperate sometimes. I don't know how to make the pain go away. But lying is certainly not the answer. It didn't help anyway. I am trying to reach a place of peace and acceptance, but it seems illusive. The pain I feel still outweighs the peace I feel. My pain is like being stuck in a permanent fog. Sometimes I can see farther into the fog than others, but the fog is always there.
I don't know how to not miss my babies, how to not cry for them, how to not long for them. I feel like healing requires me to be someone I can't be, that it requires me to not feel and to forget, and I can't do that. I don't know what to do anymore. I guess just keep being patient, keep trusting God's faithfulness, keep waiting for morning...