anticipate: (verb) to expect; look forward to; be sure of
I was sitting in my car at a stoplight today when it hit me: I am not happy. I don't feel joy right now. Sure, I can laugh at things that are funny and still crack sarcastic jokes, but the actual feeling of JOY is just absent right now. I feel sadness, loss, grief, loneliness...but not joy. Depressing, huh? At first, sitting at that stoplight today, that's what I thought. But, I realized that while I don't feel joy right now, I do feel what I like to call "anticipatory joy".
Isaac used to tell me the one thing he actually liked about being in pain, was the way it felt when the pain was finally gone. (I imagine he's feeling amazing right now!) So now, here I am - feeling the pain of grief...but anticipating the joy that will come when that pain is finally numbed a little. The joy that will follow when I get through this grief. Psalm 30:5b says "...weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning." I am holding tight to that promise right now.
I remember the days before Isaac and I got married, and I was counting down the days to the wedding. I loved driving with my windows down blaring "The Best Thing" by Relient K and just feeling so overflowing with joy. I know I'll get there again. I know it won't be easy. I know I have an awesome God, loving family, and amazing friends to help me. I know there will be a day where I am driving, windows down, radio blaring, and feeling joyful. But for now, I'm letting myself be sad, cry when it hits me, curl up on my couch and wallow when I need to, and trying to move forward the best I know how.