I've been tossing and turning, up every hour since I went to bed at 10:30.
I've given up, for now, on finding sleep.
We say goodbye tomorrow. To a husband. To a son. To a brother. To a teacher. To a coach.
To MY brother.
On one level it doesn't seem real. Like this is a dream. That this man isn't gone. Not Will. He had everything. And now we have nothing.
Nothing but memories. Stories. Photos. These are great, of course, but not as good as the real thing.
I've had people remark how strong I have been. The truth of the matter is that it's not MY strength. I am broken. Shattered. Angry. Confused. So full of emotion that I don't know what to do.
I'm also filled with love. Hope. Strength. Courage. Peace.
"Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God." (Psalm 42:11)
My brother put his hope in God. I put my hope in God.
What is His plan? I have no idea. It seems unfair that he would be taken so early. That he would leave behind a wife and a family who love him and miss him. That he would put his life on the line as a Marine overseas -- twice -- only to be killed in a traffic accident.
I could choose to be angry. I could choose to cry uncontrollably. I could shake my fist and scream at God.
He would listen.
And then He would give me His peace. Because I know what my brother is doing right this instant. He is praising the Lord Most High. Right at His feet.
For some people, tragedy shakes their faith. Rocks it. Overturns it, even.
But not me.
I will cry and be sad, but I will not be shaken. I will be strengthened. I will be lifted up on eagle's wings, filled with a peace that surpasses all understanding.
Because it's all I can be. My trust in God's plan is stronger than any tragedy. In my weakness I am made strong because of Him.
I can't explain it. I can't tell you why having faith is easy even when it's not. Even when you're angry and hurt.
The truth is that I see a tiny sliver of the plan that God has for my brother's life. For MY life. But I know there is one.
And it is beautiful.