Monday, October 25, 2010

Dealing With Heartache

Life never ceases to amaze me. You think you are doing great and starting to figure it out and then...Life does it's own thing. Fortunately, I have the knowledge of a loving Heavenly Father and our Savior. I have been struggling with so many things. I started seeing a counselor in September to help me work through some of my past issues that I had buried deep inside of me. These things were holding me back. I was using them to beat myself up which was leading to self-loathing. In July I started waking up sick every morning. See post below for the health problems. It has been difficult to eat and have the energy I need to accomplish all that I have to. Things were starting to get better. I have become stronger mentally and overcome so much over the last few weeks, with the help of the Savior. I had been feeling a little better and had been able to eat 1000 calories a day. Then the final blow. My dear brother, Alan, who had moved in with us, dies two miles from my house.
Alan and I shared a unique bond. He was my only FULL blood brother. I love ALL of the people I am blessed enough to call my family, but I felt very protective of him. He and I shared so many of the same trials in our childhood. We both suffered from self-loathing and not feeling loved or wanted or even worthy of love. He turned away from the gospel, I clung onto it for dear life. We were just starting to get to know each other again. But I was too wrapped up in my own little world trying to deal with all of my baggage. I didn't reach out to him the way I wanted to. Sometimes we would have deep discussions about life. He knew he had so many things to resolve but I don't know if he knew where to start. He was happy I was getting professional help and told me to let him know what I learned. Last week I felt like I needed to prepare for a tough week. I started making freezer meals just in case, so I would have dinner on hand if needed. I felt that I needed to sit down and talk with Alan and let him know that I loved him and wanted to help him. I was going to take him out to dinner Friday night to just talk and find out what his goals were. Rob and I decided against it, thinking that it would be better for Al and I to talk alone. I was scared to do it by myself. I was scared to say something that would upset him and cause him to not love me anymore. So I put it off until Sunday night. Sunday morning came and he was gone. The old me would be beating myself up over the fact the the Spirit promtped me to talk to him. I could have made sure he knew that I loved him and given him one last hug. But I didn't and I will be sorry about it forever, but life must go on.
We got a visit from the Sheriff at 5AM Sunday morning. He didn't even know that Alan lived here, he just had an address that he found in Al's car. Rob answered the door. He thought Al was locked out. Then the news. I was very distraught. I wanted to go see his body. We called the coroner and he advised against it. Alan was not in good shape. It is hard to not get that closure right away. As we started going through Alan's things, we felt like any minute he was going to walk in and get after us for being in his room.
We didn't tell the children right away. They had a Primary Program that they had to sing in and they had been working hard on their parts. So we went to church. It was hard for me to keep it together. I knew it would be with the Spirit so strong around me. We had to pass by the scene of the accident on the way to church and that didn't help. But I was so very blessed because I went. I talked to my Bishop for an hour and he gave me a blessing. I received so much comfort and peace from it.
I now know that Alan will be able to heal on the other side in a way that COULD NOT happen here. There he is surrounded by so many that love him. The Bishop told me that Alan knew I loved him and that he appreciated all that I had done for him. That one thing was exactly the thing I was upset about. That I didn't tell him. But now I knew. I have felt him close by me. He is happy and at peace. I know that he will have to work through a lot of things he did in this life, but I know that he will accept the Gospel on the other side. I have spent many hours and days fasting and praying for him. This was the Lord's answer.
The funny thing about all of this is that he didn't feel loved and yet he had SO many that loved him. He just didn't realize it. That is an eye opener for me....through this so many have reached out to comfort me and now I see that there are so many people that love me, too. I have been living my life in fear of losing people's love or people not loving me but not anymore. I can learn from this experience.
Sorry if this is jumping all over the place. It is just my thoughts bouncing around my head and I'm trying to get it all down.
I received a message from someone who knew Alan on FB. She told me that she loved him so much but lives in South Africa. She was upset by the news. She had been talking to Al for over a year and they had helped each other through depression and thoughts of suicide. I told her what had happened. She told me that Alan had been worried about me over the last couple of weeks. He said I was too thin and he thought I was depressed. Side note, I wasn't depressed, just soul-searching. I cried to hear that and then laughed because we both were worried about each other but both afraid to approach each other and talk. LESSON LEARNED! Don't waste the time you have with your loved ones!!!! When I feel love or appreciation for someone, I am going to make sure that they know it.
We were able to get into Al's email account and found that he went out the night he died with a girl here in Colorado. She was supposed to meet with him the next day, but he never showed. We sent her a message and she called and asked for Alan. I had to tell her the terrible news. She had only been out with him a few times, but she was very upset. I wish he had known the affect he had on people. They loved him for who he was. He was a good person with a big heart, but so scared of being hurt. One more way that we were alike.
I also received a message from another guy on FB saying that he had been spending most of the day trying to find someone from Al's family. It turns out that he had driven by the accident scene last night and there were picures and papers thrown all over the road. He gathered them and wanted to get them to the family. He had pieced together what info he had and found us on FB. That meant so much to me. The kindness of a total stranger.
I know that Heavenly Father has a plan and nothing is left to chance. If we put our faith in him, we can be blessed and be at peace with whatever happens. I sincerely believe this with my whole heart! The last couple of months have taught me this. I have seen his hand working miracles in my everyday life. It amazes me at the love and tenderness he showers on all of us each day if we just open our eyes to see it.
We are burying Alan next to my other brother who died in a car accident, Ricky, in View cemetary which is in Burley, ID. The next few days are going to be rough as we have to transport his body there. I know it will all work out and there will be many blessings along the way, but it doesn't mean that it is easy.
Alan and I both had a love for music and for the beauty that surrounds us. He wanted me to write some music with him. Sadly, I was too busy. He took so many beautiful pictures which I will share on my blog as a tribute to a kind, loving, but troubled man. I will also share some of the writings that we found when we went through his things. I hope he won't mind. It does make one stop and think about what others will find when you pass away....what am I leaving behind for my children and loved ones that will allow a glimpse of who I really am? Food for thought.


Jenny said...

Kristina, thanks for sharing this story. We love your family and hope that you can feel comfort and peace during this incredibly hard time.

Adrienne said...

I'm so sorry Kristina. I hope you can feel the love and comfort of the Savior around you at this time. My heart is with you.

MommyCEOs said...

Kristina and family, we are friends of your mom and dad (Rich and Verdella) and I am so sorry for your loss and what you guys are going through. I truly appreciate your blog post....and am praying for your family through this rough moment in time. So glad to see you clinging to the Savior ... he will bring all of you peace. All our love and prayers, Tony and Brook Robinson

Mike Tolman said...

Wow. Thanks for posting all that and no it is not TMI. If someone can't handle your blogs -they don't need to read them. Never doubt that you are loved by MANY and truly ARE an amazing woman, mother, wife, etc. Whatever lies in the past is just a another brick on the path, you are a wonderful person.

Jaren t said...

I whole heartedly second what Mike said

Micheal Gloschat said...

My heart and prayers go out to you Kristina and the whole Grout family. All my love.

Ashley said...

Kris- you really are amazing and loved and looked up to by so many! I am so sorry to hear about your loss. I hope you are able to feel the peace and love over the next while. I am glad to hear that you are starting to feel a little better physically. PLEASE let me know if there is anything you need or even if you just need to blow off some steam. We will be praying for you and your family. <3

Marisa said...

Kris, so sorry to hear about your brother. It sounds like the last few months have been really rough for you. We will be praying for you and your family.