I tell myself . . .

You are going to be OK.
You just need to breathe.
The anxiety may come.
The anger.
The sadness.
But in time they will slow down.
They may even go away.
I know it is just a cycle, a grief cycle.

It’s hard for me to believe anything will get better but I read books that say so. I just do not like how I feel. It marks me like a tattoo. It is something you cannot remove or change. It is something you live with for the rest of your life. That is why I know if I step back and breathe, I will get through that moment, that hour, or that day.

I have seen how feelings can destroy a person. They can ruin a marriage, a family, a life. It will not happen immediately, but slowly the thief will come into your house and steal your joy. I am reminded by Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” In those moments, my anger subsides, my anxiety is gone, and God reminds me of the wonderful memories and blessings I have.

This will not be the last time He will save me. There will be many more times I will be on my knees praying and crying for help. Just like before, He will be there for me.

None of this would be happening if I had not lost my son, Tyler, on August 23, 2013 in a car accident. He was just going to be gone for 30 minutes with friends—but he never came home. The driver lost control of his car on our gravel road just one mile from our house.

I will never forget that night. It was the night my heart broke into a million pieces that I will never be able to put back together. It was the night I lost my middle son Tyler.

I know I would not have these feelings if this did not happen. But I also know I would not have compassion for others who have lost someone, either. I feel the pain, especially for a mother who has lost a child. Part of our hearts are broken and missing the moment that child is taken. I find it hard to believe time will heal, but I do know if there is no forward motion it can be deadly. Life will continue on no matter how we choose to grieve or heal.

So I am here to encourage you.

You will be OK.

You will cry.

It’s OK to be sad. Just do not let the sadness consume you.

Make today the start of a new life.

Be bold.

Be brave.

Be passionate.

Be adventurous.

Find what brings you JOY!

Whatever you do, just know you are going to be OK.

I choose to NOT let the loss of my son define me or stop me from living. I know he would not want that.

I know my life will never be the same, but I use Tyler’s accident to catapult me forward, living life to the fullest. I look for the positive, I forgive, I enjoy the little moments, I am learning to be still to hear God and I treasure every sunrise and sunset as if it were my last.

I choose to help other families who have lost a child and are grieving.

I choose to make a difference in my life and my family’s life.

I choose to LIVE.

If I live I keep Tyler’s memory alive.

You may also like:

This is Grief

God Actually Does Give Us More Than We Can Handle

You Cannot Control Seasons of Grief; You Can Only Move Through Them

Missy Hillmer

Missy Hillmer is a writer, photographer, wife, mother, creative lady whose mind is constantly on the go. She loves coffee, dark chocolate especially with nuts, music soothes her soul and being outside in the sun recharges her body. She has an angel in Heaven. Her faith is what gets her through each day. Since her son Tyler’s accident she is passionate about telling her story with the hope that it will help or inspire at least one person who has lost a child.