When Anna passed away, I was granted some kind of gift. Whether it was from God, from Anna or from my faith that I have grown up with, I don't know, but I had some kind of understanding.
When I knew that Anna was getting sicker and I knew that it was a very real possibility she wasn't going to make it, I stopped praying for her to get better. It breaks my heart to even say that, but if I am being honest, in the last week or so, I didn't pray for that anymore. Of course I hoped with all my heart that God would choose to perform a miracle and save Anna. I wanted that more than anything. But I knew it was a very real possibility that that wasn't going to happen. So instead I prayed for understanding. That if God's plan for her involved bringing her up to heaven and away from this Earth, to please, please, please help me to understand why. Why her? Why now? Just why?
When she did pass on to heaven, I believe that I was able to see and understand why. And I believe that more than anything, that that is what has gotten me through these last 2 months. That is why I am able to accept that she is no longer here and why I never experienced that grief stage of anger.
But that all changed these last 2 days. Anna's good friend for over 10 years, Micaela, was fighting leukemia since December. When she was diagnosed, Anna was one of the first people she told. She leaned on Anna for advice, for answers to the inevitable questions that only someone else fighting for their life could answer. Anna and Micaela were warriors together and provided much support to each other. They were often in the hospital at the same times, and although in unfortunate circumstances, were able to spend amazing quality time together. Of course, being in the hospital and fighting for their lives did not lend itself to typical teenager bonding; instead of going out to the latest parties or going shopping like most people their age would do, they bonded over which neck pillows were the best when laying in a hospital bed all day; they bonded over trying on wigs together. Anna showed Micaela how to fill in her missing eyebrows and they bonded over the unfortunate thing they had in common; cancer.
Yesterday, Micaela couldn't fight anymore and she went to heaven to be with Anna. To say this came as a surprise would be an understatement. However, not only was I not prepared for her to die, I was also not prepared for how much this would effect me. You would think after losing your sister when she's only 18 that not much else could effect you like that. However, losing Micaela has effected me so heavily.
This is different. This time, I don't understand. This time, I don't feel a sense of peace. This time, I do feel a little bit of anger. And this time I am definitely asking why but not feeling like I'm being answered. In some ways I feel like I am back to square 1... like all the progress I've made dealing with losing Anna is gone and I have to start all over. My heart is breaking all over again.
This time, I have a whole new set of questions; not just why. One of the hardest parts about having someone you love in heaven is the unknown of heaven; there is just so much mystery behind the concept of heaven that you have to base everything on blind faith. This is the first time for me that I have experienced this.
When I shared the news of Micaela passing on facebook and twitter, one of the main responses I kept getting was "Anna is so happy to see her friend again", and to be honest, this confused me to no end. My first reaction was to think "Well, probably not" because in my head, I think of Anna as being sad to see Micaela in heaven. I think of her saying "you're not supposed to be here, you were supposed to get better" because of course that's what Anna wanted for her friend. I think of it as a bittersweet reunion; of course they are happy to be together and pain free, but does that mean that Anna isn't sad that her friend passed away? Am I thinking too "earthly" about this?
Upon further discussions with some close friends and family, some different view points were brought to my attention. "People say there is no sadness in heaven," my mom pointed out. "Do you think Anna knew Micaela was going to die before we did?", someone asked. I have to admit, I hadn't thought of these things prior to these conversations, and they make good points. However, it just left me feeling even more confused.
Perhaps the worst part is that there are no definite answers to be found. There is no way for me to understand exactly how heaven works and what heaven is like until I get there. I have to decide for myself what I believe. So for now, I guess I will deal as best I can with my lack of understanding. I will do my best to accept that I can't understand everything. But I will still wish I could...
|My heroes... always and forever. Now two beautiful angels in heaven...|