Warning: Awkward encounters ahead

Brian and I are getting a little closer to leaving Florida and moving to another state, and we may be leaving even sooner than we originally thought. While I’m looking forward to a change of scenery, I’m nervous about the social aspect of moving. We’ve met a lot of really special people here, and they are going to be really tough to leave behind. I’m sure the friendships will still continue, but it’s not the same as seeing them regularly. 

I’m nervous about meeting new people because they didn’t know us before our daughter was born. We haven’t had to explain a whole lot because our friends experienced it with us. I often wonder, how do I go about telling someone I just met? What do I even say?

“Hi! My name is Kim, I have a daughter in heaven named Aria. What’s your name?”

I know that definitely isn’t the best way to go about it. I can already see the uncomfortable faces of strangers followed by a sad “I’m so sorry”. I do want people to know Aria is still very much a part of our family, but I don’t want people to respond by feeling sad or uncomfortable. I can’t imagine we’ll make any friends if that is the case. I want to find a way to explain without people pitying us or thinking of us as “that poor couple whose daughter passed away.” 

Yes, our daughter entered heaven before us. Yes, we miss her every single day. Yes, it is sad at times. But there is also joy, hope and thankfulness. The Lord blessed us with Aria and has continued to bless us after her passing. I want people to be able to see that. I want people to look at us and see that we are so much more than what we have experienced.

I’m quite certain there will be a few awkward moments as we get the hang of introducing new friends to our daughter in heaven.  I am very hopeful that we will find people along the way who accept us and our awkwardness, and choose to join us on our journey through life. I just pray I find the right words to honor Aria and keep her memory alive. 

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