I’ve been throwing around blog post ideas for the last week or so, but nothing seemed to quite fit. With Isabelle’s birthday approaching, it occurred to me why: I just really hate July. I have been dreading July for months. When it finally came, I mentally tried to keep myself in June, praying that I would wake up and we would magically have skipped to August.
When I was a child, July meant vacations to visit extended family, seemingly endless days at the beach, and carefree evenings riding my bike around the neighborhood with my friends. Once high school started, it meant my summer job would soon be ending and that the school year was approaching. Last summer, Matt and I eagerly waited for July’s arrival, knowing that it would bring with it our daughter.
The Fourth of July last year was spent with family at the beach. While waiting on the fireworks, we all sat around chatting about when Isabelle would make her appearance and how much she might weigh. As the fireworks started, I remember being excited about her upcoming July 13 due date and thinking about how our lives would be very different the next July.
Now, one year later, our lives certainly have changed, but not in the ways we had expected. I was not expecting to be pregnant again at this point. I thought I would be chasing around an energetic almost one year-old when July rolled around.
This weekend, I found myself again at the beach. It turned out to be a really pleasant and enjoyable day surrounded with family and friends. There was a point in my grieving journey in which I thought I would never have days like that again. Yet, there I was in my least favorite month of the year, having a great day. I admit that I felt a bit guilty about it.
As if both God and Isabelle heard my thoughts, a storm moved in after dinner, and when it was over, a huge rainbow appeared in the sky. It was as if Isabelle wanted me to know that it was fine with her that I had a fun day at the beach.
However, I still don’t like this month, and I’m dreading July 25th and 26th as they slowly approach on the calendar. Honestly, I continually push those dates out of my mind and choose not to think about them too much in hopes that perhaps they will just go away and never show their ugly faces again.
Nevertheless, ignoring those days certainly won’t help me move forward. From the beginning of this journey I have attempted to directly face the difficult situations and moments. I really do believe that it is the only way to keep moving forward even if they may only be small steps. My prayer this month has simply been for strength to face July 25th and July 26th head-on. I am not quite sure what that is going to look like yet, but I am pretty sure I will know how to handle it when the time arrives.