Loving, needing, healing

by Greg Lincoln

One thing that we have always enjoyed going to is the basketball tournament that is hosted here in Bethel each year for our villages. It features our hometeams and we get to see all our friends and loved ones from other places. We love the crowds, the sea of cheering faces, the smiles and the joyous celebrations.
What a nice weekend it has been. We got to see our family members from back home and also from places like Kasigluk, Napaskiak, and Newtok. For some, it is the only time we get to see them, once a year, at this tournament.
It is like a vacation, something special to look forward to. And we are so glad to look forward to it. It gives us a chance to feel the happiness of seeing our friends. And everyone has been so kind, you understand and feel the anguish that we have been living with after the loss of our own, the one that is our beloved and precious beyond words.
Your greetings have helped our hearts to heal, as slow and painstaking as it has been. That is what we yearn for, to get better and to be able to bear this burden of grief that weighs heavy on our hearts and our minds.
Most of the time we are still in disbelief but when we see the cross and the flowers as real as they could be before our eyes, it brings back the reality of what has happened. Oh the trauma is so unbearable, so weakening. But dear friends, we are sensitive to your prayers and we can feel them when we are in the darkness of our despair. Thank you for lifting us up as you say our names, interceding on our behalf to the One who is our Lord and Maker.
It is something that we all have to go through when our time comes, but it should have been the other way around.
We have been living each day as it comes. And you know what, our daughter’s puppy has been doing good. He’s about a year a half old now and so full of love for life. He’s a good puller, she trained him well. He’s also our therapy. Just being near him helps to mend our poor, broken hearts.
Another thing that has helped us is to not be afraid to ask for whatever it is that we need. So if you are in the same boat as we, sailing this same neverending storm, don’t be afraid to ask someone for help.
When you share your words of encouragement, our hearts are stirred. We so deeply appreciate your love to our family, how greatly you have blessed us. Quyana for taking the time to say a few words to us, to share your advice, and to ask how we are doing. We love your hugs and good cheer.
Kelly wanted to say thank you so much for your loving gifts of moose and fish. We love our Eskimo foods so very much, which also brings comfort, quyana cakneq.
As we go forth on this journey of ours and yours because we are all together, please remember and pray for the ones who are bereaved, weak, lonely. Your powerful prayers surround us like a protective shield, keeping us from harm and strengthening us, building us up with your boundless, limitless loving kindness.