Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Advent and Hope
There's an intoxicating sort of expectation to the days lately, with Sadie babbling on about Advent constantly. The family rosary at night has an added element of excitement with the Advent wreath burning, and I think that having candles flickering and praying downstairs by the family altar is definitely a new tradition that is going to survive beyond this season.
My prayers in those first days in some ways were easier, pouring out silently, but weren't the sort that brought our family together to anticipate the arrival of hope in the world. We pushed on and stumbled through, doing what we were able, but feeling as if we had barely survived the previous months and unsure of the damage that had been done and whether we would ever be blessed with another little life.
Hope was there, but it seemed to be a far off idea, cloaked in sorrow that was nearly too thick to see through.
These past months, as we readied our home to welcome Patrick and then were carried quickly on into the start of the holidays, those hard days from last year, and our little saint, have, as always, been in my heart and thoughts. And while the loss of a child is never easy, even when separated by an ever widening expanse of time, the ache is tempered now by hope.
God has been at work, healing us. I feel as though I can see the promise that this season holds a bit more clearly this year... and the longing and expectation is somehow easier to understand, as I find myself longing all the more for the promise that the birth of our Savior offers.
The sorrows of last year will never disappear, but it is through the lens of those sorrows that the future glows all the more brightly. It is through our suffering that God often shapes us and readies us to receive his love.
This year, I can finally see the hope that rings through this seasons as we wait in the darkness for the light which will be born into the world on Christmas Day.