A longing is defined as “a yearning desire”.
I don’t believe that I truly understood what longing was until after Raelyne passed. I had wished for things that I had experienced in the past. I had a desire for different situations, feelings, and experiences. But having a desire for something is only one part of longing. The “yearning” part is what separates a desire from a longing. Yearning is defined as “to long persistently, wistfully, or sadly”.
For me, the longing is what makes grief unbearable.
I remember those first few weeks. I couldn’t bear to look at a picture of Raelyne. Because when I did, I saw her beautiful face. Those chubby cheeks. Those gorgeous blue eyes. And I longed to pick her right up out of that picture. Cuddle her. And never let her go. I could not bear the longing of needing to pick her up. Needing to hold her. Snuggle her. The need to feel her against me again. Any picture I looked at, triggered that intense, unbearable longing.
That longing I experience by looking at pictures, is easing with time. Most days, I now appreciate the pictures of her all around and find comfort in them. But the longing for her remains. It comes at different times. In different ways. Sometimes not as often. Sometimes constantly throughout the day.
Some days the longing is intense. It may ease after a good cry but then it will come back. Again. And again. And again. All day long. Days like that are hard. Grueling. Extremely tough. And yet, none of those adjectives accurately describe the feeling I have. No words can truly depict the longing a mother has for her child in Heaven.
And for me, the longing of holding Raelyne. Kissing Raelyne. Cuddling her. Isn’t comforted by the knowledge that I know she is in Heaven. The knowledge that one day, we will be reunited again. Because I don’t know what that will look like. I don’t know what kind of new body she has in the present Heaven. Or what it will be like when we are reunited with our Earthly bodies. I hold onto the hope that I will see her again. And be with her forever. It’s just hard to be comforted by something beyond our capabilities of comprehending.
Lately, one of the things that comforts me, is knowing that I never took a moment for granted with Raelyne. I cuddled her when she needed it or when I needed it. We went on adventures. We explored. I spent as much time with her as possible. And we experienced her life to the fullest. Even if I knew the last time I saw her, was going to be the last, nothing would have changed. We laughed that day. We sang songs, read books, and played together. We snuggled and hugged. She sat on my lap, cuddled in, for an hour before her procedure. And I soaked up those cuddles and appreciated them.
That little girl experienced every ounce of my love and I know that she knew the love I have for her. I will long to be able to give her that love for the rest of my life. That longing comes from my love for her. And my love lets me hold her close.