On the dining room table, sits a green cake with 2 candles.  One yellow and one green, because Audrey said boys like yellow and green. (She wanted a pink cake but when reminded this birthday celebration wasn’t hers, she chose green) It sits st an empty table, waiting. Waiting for the song. Waiting for the fire. Waiting for the warm breath of the big sister that will blow out the candles on behalf of her brother. Waiting to be cut and eaten; enjoyed by this little family. In this moment, that cake feels a lot like my heart.

This season of waiting. Waiting to be reunited with my son. Waiting for eternity where the pain of death no longer stings. Waiting for Jesus’ embrace as he makes our earthly bodies new. Waiting for this season of grief to be over. Waiting for the day we take a family picture and aren’t missing any members. Often I feel alone in this waiting. Not because I don’t have wonderful support and community, but because it’s lonely in grief. It’s a very selfish thing. You have to allow yourself the time and space to process and grief doesn’t follow rules or schedules. It hits when it hits, sometimes with no warning, sometimes with a gentle sting. Sometimes, it barely even feels real. And just like that birthday cake, alone on the dining room table, I’m waiting for what comes next.

The tricky part of all of this is being content in the right now, as I wait for what comes next. Digging deep so roots can extend in this place God has called me. Because even though death feels awful, God knew George Mason was only called to 16 earthly hours; and He gave him to us anyway. Not anyway, purposely. Adam and I were always supposed to be George Mason’s parents. God knew we would be on this journey without our son. He’s using this for His glory. Somehow. Some way. He’s at work and this death was not a mistake. And so we wait. But we also have to be content - and the only way I can manage that, is to sink into the deep, covering, wings of my Heavenly Father.

Today we went bowling. We took a break from the realities of our daily lives, and we did something special. Something birthday worthy. Today has been very much about celebration. Thank you Jesus for that gift. The ability to take George Mason’s day and use it to truly celebrate his life and not mourn him. Even if it’s only for one day, that’s an incredible gift. But knowing my God, it won’t just be one day. Because just as He calls us to be content in this moment, He will provide for and sustain that contentment. So tomorrow, I will unpack all of the emotions that have been held at bay today. And tonight, we will sing Happy Birthday and blow out TWO candles.

Happy Birthday, my sweet George Mason. You are loved. You are missed. You are made whole and new. Give your Grammy a kiss for me. I can’t even imagine how wonderful this day must be for you in Heaven.

He will cover you with his feathers and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. - Psalm 91:4