What I’m Clinging to Today

“Life will never be the same again, but you won’t always feel like you do right now.”

These are the words a friend shared today in an email, taken from Tony Dungy’s book. His son committed suicide, and this is what the chaplain for the Minnesota Vikings shared with him in the aftermath. I know that life will never be the same again. That is a given. Hearing that I won’t always feel the way I feel right now is a comforting thought. Because I don’t want to feel how I feel right now the rest of my life. At the same time, I don’t want time to take away the memories, the feelings, that I have of Susan. They are so strong right now too.

Maybe there’s a way for the pain to diminish but the memories and positive feelings to stay. I just don’t want to get years and years down the road, and forget.

But it is encouraging to know that the pain eventually subsides. Hanging onto that today.


11 Responses to “What I’m Clinging to Today”

  1. Misty Says:

    I’m so sorry. Just so so sorry.

    The memories you have, they won’t ever ever leave you. Never. But, the pain attached to remembering will. As time passes, you’ll be able to remember, but the pain won’t sting as badly. You’ll be able to laugh and remember and enjoy those thoughts with out the immense pain in your chest.

    Keep hanging on.


  2. Melissa Durham Says:


    Keep hanging onto those memories…they will be there forever I promise you will look at the kids and just little things will be said and you will remember Susan and the pain will be gone one day…

    Keep hanging in there.


  3. Beth Says:

    “When the questions dissolve into the silence of God,
    the aching may remain, the breaking does not.”
    -Andrew Peterson

  4. Sam Reyes Says:

    When my dad recently passed away, Scott flew down to FL to be with me and my family. One of the things he shared with my family and I during that difficult time is how grief and the deep sorrow is like the tide and now linear. It will come and go. Some days stronger than others. The other thing that Scott shared and that comforted us was the example of Joseph and how he grieved at the loss of his father. The time he took to grieve. It was a process and a journey for him. Literally. But the point was he was intentional about his grieving. Unlike our society that often rushes grief or sweeps grief under the rug like its a taboo thing. Don’t. Don’t!!! I was blown away by the words you wrote for her memorial service. I’m sorry I was not able to be there. But I’m glad you celebrated her life. Part of her going home is grieving. I guess all I can say is that’s OK. Go ahead and grieve.

  5. Joan Says:

    I lost the love of my life in an accident. It has been two and a half years and I am still standing, walking, and even dancing sometimes. The grief was beyond any painful experience I had encountered, but I let it work with me and let it work with you. It opened up places in me that I did not know were there and created a blessed place for my love and all the years of memories. He resides there…peacefully and comfortably. I could have never predicted this experience, but I think allowing the grief to burrow deep into me, and not run away, allowed for this transformation. Facing the terrible sadness with all God’s love holding you up will bring you safely to a place of strange and beautiful peacefulness along with the will to travel on. Work hard to stay connected with all the graceful moments and graced people that are being sent your way. They are God’s way of holding you. Blessings and prayers

  6. Lynn Says:

    My children and I talk about my husband often. I tell them what he would have said, or how they are like him, and what he taught me (like how to eat my first fajita!). The drowning, searing, gasping, can’t even breath deep pain has gone out with the tide and only occasional gentler waves of sadness remain. But what remains strongly and deeply is the sweetness and true essence of who my husband was and how much he loved the Lord and our family. He is still every bit a part of us and yet we have also moved forward in life. I know you are in so much pain now, and I am so deeply sorry you have to travel this path. For us the worst was when it would sneak up on us, like the time I turned the corner in the grocery store and smelled coffee and had such a strong scent memory of all of those mornings my husband got up to grind the coffee that I had to grab the children and run from the store to keep myself from laying down in the aisle and wailing from the pain.. Now I turn that same corner and smile at those same precious memories. I am praying for you and your children during these hard days and nights.

  7. Whitney Gray Says:

    Jerel, when we lost our baby, our grief counselor said that
    the three T’s would help us heal: Talking, Tears, and Time. 12
    years later I see that has been true. I want you to know how much
    this blog has resonated with people. Here are a few of the
    comments: “As I’ve said before, though I didn’t know her, I feel so
    touched by their story and this has been on my mind today-from what
    I have read and learned of their love for each other, I can only
    imagine that it was a beautiful celebration of her life! I will
    continue to keep their family in prayer!” “Been following this blog
    for several days now. What strong family and faith! God will
    prevail in this situation. He has a very special place for Susan
    Law. What a touching situation and I can’t imagine my family going
    through this. I thank God every day that he spared me through my
    cancer ordeal 7 years ago. This is a tremendous loss of a mother ,
    friend and Wife, we will pray that God’s hand bring comfort to this
    amazing family.” “What a wonderful wife, mother, friend, woman. I
    didn’t have the honor of knowing her personally, but after seeing
    your posts I began to read her blog. I went back very far in the
    blog and began to …read and experience the love this woman and
    her family had for each other. Their faith was also inspiring. I
    was happy they got to spend Christmas together and saddened to see
    how much it took for her to have that moment with them….. It made
    me really take time to BE in each moment during my holiday. Thank
    you for sharing her story and we will keep praying for Jerel and
    the kids.” There are many more, Jerel. So many people are praying
    for you. Hang in there. Whitney

  8. Lynn Marshall Says:

    Jerel, you will never forget Susan. You will have your memories forever but there will come a point that when you remember, instead of feeling pain you will be able to smile. There will be a time when you can look at pictures and share stories and the memory will be sweet. Although now it is hard to believe the pain will subside God will heal and replace the old with the new.

  9. Michelle Harrison Says:

    Don’t feel that when the pain diminishes that you have forgotten Susan. Your memories will actually be better than the ones you are thinking about now! She is forever in your heart. She would not want you to not continue living a full life while on Earth. Your children are watching you and will take their cues from you. From Psalm 121: 1-3 “I look up to the mountains; Does my strength come from mountains? No, my strength comes from God, Who made heaven, and earth, and mountains. He won’t let you stumble, Your Guardian God won’t fall asleep.”

  10. Angie Stadler Says:

    Jerel~ We have a daughter that died at the age of 3, 2 months before our oldest son was born. The pain does diminish, and you find a new sense of “normal”. Life is not the same, but memories/feelings stay. One of my greatest fears is that I will forget the little things about Emily as time goes on…but so far, so good. Susan’s light will shine through all of you so brightly–you’ll have no choice but to keep memories forever. Lynn (above) said it perfectly.

  11. Lin Essick Says:

    As I was sitting here and praying for you, I heard the song in my head “All I ever have to be is what you made me….” There will be days ahead when you question if you are grieving appropriately, setting an example, etc. Whatever you feel and whatever you want to say to God is ok. He gets it. Being a nurse, there have been so many times that I’ve disagreed with how God lets things happen and I have railed at him. Last year when my son tried to commit suicide, I felt that God had totally abandoned us. I think it made it worse knowing what we had given up and the sacrifices we had made in order for Joe to be a pastor. It was so tempting to look around at other people and wonder why God was doing this to us when we truly love him so much and other people we knew who weren’t so “devout” seemed so much more blessed than us. Have you felt that way, too? It’s normal, but it was the wrong voice taunting, for sure. But I know that God loved us through all of that. He understood my questioning of Him. He gave us what we needed-just enough sometimes to get through the day, but enough. There were days when I didn’t know what I was supposed to do next. I’m sure you are having days like that now. God loves you, Jerel and He loves your children. And He IS with you. He will give you all whatever you need to get through this, even on days when you aren’t sure that you can. My prayer is that you feel His arms around you and your kids and when you think of your beautiful wife, you’ll know that most people never have a love like you two shared and that has been one of His gifts for you and the fact that you have been blessed to share such a great love is one of the reasons why it hurts so badly now. You are being prayed for constantly. Lin

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