"They tell me H. is happy now, they tell me she is at peace. What makes them so sure of this? ... why are they so sure that all anguish ends with death? More than half the Christian world, and millions in the East, believe otherwise. How do they know she is 'at rest?' Why should the separation (if nothing else) which so agonizes the lover who is left behind be painless to the lover who departs?"
C. S. Lewis, A Grief Observed
I've been wondering lately if he misses us. I was happy to read this passage in C. S. Lewis again and find that I wasn't the first grieving person to wonder this. I find myself asking if, even for the total absence of pain and brokenness in heaven (and the presence of God to boot), there is something of a sense of separation -- not imperfection, but like a marriage that has not been consummated yet. The vows have been spoken, the marriage declared, but it isn't complete until husband and wife come together as one flesh.
I haven't been wondering this because I want him to be anything but perfectly happy -- after all he went through in his barely sixteen days on earth, he deserves all the happiness he can get. But something about him skipping about in heaven without nary a care or a tear for where he came from and those left behind doesn't seem like quite the right picture either. It's hard to imagine what heaven might be like with an earthly mind and any wondering about I could put into words about heaven and separation wouldn't do it justice.
I'm not suggesting that heaven is anything other than a perfect place. I just wonder if there is some kind of sense there of what there is here, that sense of tension that tells us things are not as they should be. At least not yet.
A few notes:
James and I are heading out of town! We're leaving on a jet plane early tomorrow (1/20) to spend a week in Nashville and then a week in the Orlando area. We're going to spend time with some good friends and make the acquaintance of some new ones. I haven't been an every-day kind of blogger lately anyway, but I just wanted to let everyone know that if I'm even a little less present over the next couple of weeks, that is why. We get back on the evening of February 3, and then I will head back to work full time on February 10.
For Christmas gifts this year, I made a small book for family and friends that had selections from blog posts I had written throughout my pregnancy and Ewan's life (and after), as well as some of our favorite photos from the same period of time. I know that though many of you never got to meet him, you loved Ewan too. So if you would like one, the book is now available for you to order through Blurb.com. We aren't making any kind of money from this -- we just wanted to make it available to those who would like a memento of Ewan's life.
And for those of you wondering, I am working on writing a book about all of this. I just have part of an introduction and a rough outline so far, but I'm plugging away at it. I continue to maintain that Ewan is too good not to share, and I'm hopeful that his broken heart will continue to heal others for years to come.
Now I guess I had better get packing!