I could just smile, nod and deny being angry about what happened to Logan. It would certainly be an easy out. I could allow myself to be publicly branded the brave, strong, amazingly faithful servant who soldiers on with great resolve and self-denial during a time of gut-wrenching pain. And then behind the scenes, I could cry alone each and every night as I already do, some nights nearly drowning in the cavernous depths of my own sense of despair, with no one outside the walls of my own imagination aware of my duplicity.
But it would be disingenuous. And God's not interested in disingenuousness. And I've never been particularly good at not wearing my heart on my sleeve, anyway. To not feel anger over the atrocities that Logan suffered --that our entire family endured-- would be inhuman. We're made to feel the entire spectrum of emotion, from joy and elation to despair and pain. Of course, we do all we can to avoid the latter feelings because they're hard. Because we think we're not supposed to feel them. Because somehow, being angry about something that's egregiously unfair is wrong. But that's a load of baloney. So yes: I'm angry.
And you know something? That's just fine. It's where I am and I refuse to pretend that I'm not mad just to make myself look heroic or --in some ridiculous way-- to make God look good. I spend too much time worrying about how my reaction to what happened to Logan will affect people seeking a Savior in this lousy world. I'm terrified of saying or doing the wrong thing; of driving people away from God (or in some cases, the rudimentary notion that a God might even exist). It's a silly thing, really; after all, God will act in and around people as He so chooses. But I'm keenly aware that my words have impact, if only within the bounds of a small circle. However, I also know that I'm allowed to be upset.
A friend shared with me a few weeks ago that she was worried about my heart; worried that I'd hate God because of all we went through and the horrific outcome of the ordeal. I can't lie and say that I'm pleased with Him. And I won't lie. That would be disingenuous. I'm heartbroken. I feel betrayed. I feel left behind, forgotten, hated, despised, unvalued. I don't feel loved. I feel, at times, like I'm part of a cosmic joke that's not even funny. But if I were to deny myself these feelings, I suspect I'd also deny myself a real journey through the process of grief. I have to be angry. I have to fight it out, both with myself and with God. I have to come to a place where I feel peace again, where I can pray and derive comfort from the experience. Where I go to church not out of a sense of duty, but because I want to be there. I won't go if I'm not ready.
I'm not there now, but I will be again. Eventually. I wake up every morning and ask for a sign. So far, I haven't gotten much, just a Corvette here and there. No writing in the sky or special messages from beyond this world. And it's hard. I need to know that Logan is indeed okay. It's very hard for me to go on faith when I feel like my faith wasn't rewarded. I did everything I could for Logan. I begged for his life. And then God didn't heal him for me. He didn't restore my son to me. It broke my heart. It will break my heart every day for the rest of my life knowing that God opted against healing my baby even after I begged and pleaded and tried so hard to do everything right. After all of those trips to the hospital, the time lost with our other kids, the challenges of coping with pregnancy while knowing that Logan could die. I cannot tell you how awful it was and continues to be for me. I have every right to be angry. And I have every right to not be judged for an honest emotion, even if it's a negative one.
But some day it will be different. Some day I will wake up and it won't be as awful. It won't kill me a little bit more to think of his last days and of how much was taken from him. The crack in my heart won't deepen every time Isaac asks what happened to Logan and why he had to die. The pain won't be as intense when Abby looks at her wallet-sized photo of her best friend and asks what I think he's doing in Heaven, if he has wings, how he eats, if he eats and so on.
So that's where I am, for real. The unadulterated, unmoderated truth of me-ness for now.