Tonight I will take hold of the greatest blessing I may ever know in my life. At 11:59 p.m. I will close my eyes, squeeze them as tightly as I can and count to 60 and when I open them, this year will be over. I will no longer be living in the year of loss... the clock will have provided me with a new start.
I have never been one to celebrate the end of a year and the beginning of another. I have never understood the point in celebrating the inevitable like it was something rare. There's really never been a point in celebrating something just because it was over. This is what I always secretly thought as I've dressed to the nines and held the champagne glass high or fallen into the arms of friends who pat me on the back for making it through one year and to the precipice of another. I did nothing incredible this past year and the chances of doing something incredible in the year to come, something that warrants celebration anyway, are slim to none.
I've circled around it a thousand different times and I don't know where to put this year. Do I celebrate the year because I had it? Do I celebrate the year because it's over? Do I celebrate it because for three quarters of it I had my best friend, biggest inspiration and best person that I know with me? Do I celebrate it because I know that this year took the one thing I was certain I couldn't live without and I proved it wrong? Do I celebrate it at all?
I know how to mourn it, but I don't know if I should... The last fourth of July with Mom, the last trip to Columbia with Mom, the last time I heard her voice, touched her hand, saw her smile. Those are all things that I could mourn. They are things that will forever remain locked in 2014. Those are the things we don't think about when it comes to death. Time stops and when it does, it grabs a hold of everything, freezes it and puts it in a glass box on display right next to the confusion and despair you are already staring down. You can't mourn that. You can mourn what you lose and you can mourn what you miss and you can mourn what you may or may not allow it to turn you into, but you cannot mourn the stop.
So instead of mourning, I will wait for the glory. That's the thing about God that I understand least. I understand the compassion of God and I understand His mercies. I understand the hand of providence and I understand His plan. But I don't understand His glory. I don't understand glory in and of itself, quite frankly.
Maybe I get it in the sense of human beings. When someone steals your "glory" they steal the praise that should have come your way. They steal the spotlight that could be shining on you, should be shining on you. Glory is victory. Glory is basking. So what is the glory of God and where is His glory for 2014? How will it manifest? How will it shine through? And, most worrisome to me, if I know nothing about the glory of God, then how will I recognize the glory that was meant to roll off, roll out, roll like thunder from the loss of my sweet, sweet mother?
I know the lives that she touched as she lived and as she lived through the process of dying. I know the strength that I have seen in my brother, in my uncles, in my family through this process of loss. Is that it, is that the glory? Because I think, as immature and selfish as it sounds, in order to understand it all, I need to see the glory.
And therein lies the uselessness of celebrating the cycle of ending and beginning... I need to see the glory to understand but I don't understand what glory is so have I missed it already? Tonight as I quickly and most joyfully bid farewell to 2014, the last year of my life as I had known it since birth I will turn my eyes to 2015 and pray for the reverse of what I've prayed for most of my life: I will pray for eyes that understand and a heart that can see and recognize the glory when it is fulfilled.