The Ache of Quiet

I talk, a lot.  The Farmer used to tell me that I not only use all of my words during a day, but that I use his as well.  So to have  day when I can’t think of words to say is rare. But that describes what my day has been like. Quiet. Sad. Shocked silence.

Do you have someone in your extended family that is the one you always hang out with at family gatherings? My Dad’s side of the family is pretty big. My grandparents had five children. Those 5 kids had 16 grandkids and those grandkids have produced 38 great-grandkids to this point. And while it may seem too big to be close, I would do anything for any of my cousins. Most of my cousins still live within arms reach. Only a few live out-of-state, but I keep in touch with them and their families.

My grandparents taught me that family is everything. As a young kid, my very favorite cousin, who is just six months older, and I would hide during our Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter gatherings. Someone would have to come find us, normally hiding out in a bedroom in the upstairs of my grandparents house. We’d sit there for hours and just talk. I don’t remember what we talked about, but I remember spending time together.  We went to church camp together for many years. We wrote letters to each other.  We shared our hopes and dreams. And we laughed.

Our paths took us different directions. She and her husband to their own farming operation, just the two of them. Mine and The Farmer to my family farm, with three kids. And we don’t hide at family gatherings to catch up anymore. But I’d still drop everything for her.

In just a few days she will do something I know we never talked about during those Christmas day chats, she will say her final goodbye’s to her husband. Another life taken way too early and another time where I want to doubt exactly what God is doing.  But I know that there is always a plan and I will never understand it. I have to trust my faith.

In the meantime I’ll head to a funeral with the rest of my family to offer hugs, prayers and words that won’t be the right ones to say or won’t sound right when I try to say them. When I really just want to shout of the unfairness of cancer and wish she and I back to our days of youth, hiding in Grandma’s spare bedrooms or singing songs around the campfire at church camp.  When we were too young to ever imagine death impacting a spouse.  When we only wished for longer summer days and just a few more minutes to visit before having to go to the kids table for Christmas dinner.  Before cancer was ever something to worry about. When my faith was simple.


  1. hugs……..

  2. You know, it’s hard losing grandparents to cancer. I lost both my grandmas to pancreatic. It just all happened so fast. I was able to go on with my life but holidays and my wedding especially are tough….

    But I couldn’t imagine losing a spouse to this horrific disease. It’s more than just going on with your life…. you’re starting life over. Back from the very beginning. I know we women are taught to be independent and most of us are but I just can’t imagine.

    Thank you for opening up your heart and sharing this as a reminder that life can but cut short at any moment. I’ll be sure to hug my husband a little tighter tonight. I’ll keep you and your family, especially your cousin in my thoughts and prayers focusing on comfort and peace.

  3. I’m not finding the right words either, but I hope you know your cousin’s family was lifted up in prayers, and you all are still in my heart.

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