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I've frequently written about the 9th. It's always been our special day each month. Chris and I married on an August 9th. But, we celebrated our marriage anniversary on EVERY 9th. Most of the time it was just in small ways, but it always included us watching our wedding video and him giving me flowers. Always. Always. Always.
Five days after Chris died, I experienced my first 9th. It happened to be the day after I buried his shell (on Mother's Day). The house was full of flowers, so I didn't really miss his flowers just yet, and my mind was too warped to even comprehend the fact that I wasn't watching our wedding video.
My second 9th without the love of my life (in June) came with a kiss from heaven. I received flowers from someone that had no idea what the day was but just felted prompted to bring them to me. I knew then that the Holy Spirit had written my name across her mind, and she delivered something more precious to me than she could have possibly known.
July 9th found me at out favorite place, the beach. I drove my sister-in-law down there for the day. We happen to live about 5 hours from the beach, but she lives in Kansas and had never seen the ocean with her own eyes before. Since they were in NC visiting, I knew we couldn't wait another day - she had to see it! It was a bittersweet day. My heart ached for my true love that day - more than ever!
The next month would have marked our REAL anniversary...in honor of our blessed wedding and the precious vows we exchanged. August 9th for me this year was not only the hardest 9th I've had to endure since Chris' death, but it was also one of the hardest days for me, in general. But, through all the pain and the buckets of tears, I felt loved immensely. God held me tight that day!
September 9th was lonely. It was another dark day for me.
October 9 found me in New Jersey and later on a flight home from Philadelphia. It also brought an interesting "heart to heart" talk with the Lord. I cried that 9th too, but God began a new type of healing on my heart. I could literally feel it.
And yesterday...my most recent 9th without Chris. I thought about him constantly. I received an anonymous gift of flowers on my front porch with a "Happy Anniversary" card. I loved them! I tell people all the time that cards and flowers are my "love language". :-) But, the most incredible miracle occurred. I never cried yesterday. I was sad but not overwrought with sadness. I was lonely but not overtaken with loneliness. It was a good day. A freeing day. A healing day.
Now, I know that December 9 could be completely different, but I'm thankful for the gift of today. It was a refreshing walk along Grief Road.