Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance

SoCS: Trials, Losses, and How Do We Heal?


Our prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “trail/trial.” Use one, use both, use them any way you’d like. Bonus points if you use both. Have fun! ….

There’s a song I like, except maybe for a couple of lines, called “Blessings.” Which lines, I won’t go into. Never mind that. But the chorus goes:

“What if your blessings come through raindrops?

What if your healing comes through tears?

What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know you’re near?

What if trials in this life, are your mercies in disguise.”

It’s about how trials, disappointments, and challenges bring us closer to God. The song works well when applied to my divorce which, as I wrote about recently, turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

The problem now is that it does not seem to apply to the loss of a child. My heart and mind go to the parents who lost children to brutal, needless, senseless deaths by an 18-year-old who should never have been able to buy a gun and certainly not a weapon of war, in Texas.

I cannot imagine how those worst of trials can be a blessing. I don’t even know if the death of my sister, killed by a drunk driver on her 16th birthday, could have been a blessing to anyone, even with my parents’ dedicating the family room at the shelter in her memory. I don’t know how the loss of a child could be a blessing. Anything is possible, yes, but I would not say that to someone who has just lost a child. I would imagine the anger and overwhelming grief would be too much to even think of blessings, right now.

The husband of a teacher who was killed died from a heart attack – a broken heart – while preparing for his wife’s funeral. Joe and Irma Garcia had been married for 24 years. They had been high school sweethearts.

It’s so wrong. Wrong upon wrong, upon wrong, as we are finding out in the investigation.

Other countries have done better than the US when it comes to gun control and this type of murder. That’s for sure. There is a sickness in the heart of my country. (I just struck through “the heart of” because we have good hearts. Mostly.) Maybe we can recover from this sickness. Individual states have and can pass sensible gun laws. We can improve mental health services, address school dropout rates, etc., but I believe it’s going to take some kind of bigger shift. It’s complicated. Or maybe not.

I hope the investigations will lead to improvements. My hope is floundering a bit which is not typical. It will come as no surprise to most of my readers that I believe we need more balance between bad news and good news. That’s part of the sickness – a lack of balance.

Healing. How do we heal? Look for the good. Look for the true heroes, like teachers who continue to teach in schools, first responders who do what is necessary, leaders who have the courage to make changes for a more peaceful country, and a more peaceful world, parents who keep going after heartbreaking loss. Look for the heroes. Hold them up. Hold them in your heart. Keep them in your prayers. We can all do our part to nurture peace.

I know this is a rambling rant. Sometimes that’s what you get in the stream of consciousness. I confess I have gone back and edited a little. It was badly needed.

Maybe I should’ve written about hiking trails. I don’t know. Maybe I’ll put some in a gallery. There’s something coming to me about “The Peace of Wild Things” – a poem by Wendell Berry.

Below are some of my most recent photos from the Farm Animal Sanctuary


For more streams of consciousness and rules, visit our host, Linda Hill by following this trail:

Author: JoAnna

An open minded, tree-hugging Jesus follower, former counselor, and life-long lover of animals, I'm returning to my creative roots and have published my first book: Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again as well as the short version: From Loneliness to Love.

32 thoughts on “SoCS: Trials, Losses, and How Do We Heal?

  1. A great blog. Our country is sick with people who won’t stand up to gun mongers. What does anyone need with an assault rifle?

  2. Beautiful photos, I am so sorry for the loss of your sister when you too must of been young.
    I loss one of my sisters too and though she was in her 70s her death was avoidable.
    Those deaths in Texas last week and every other gun crime before and since and no doubt every day is in exceptable. I dare not say more but truly no one needs a gun! 💜

  3. So enjoy your words and pictures!

  4. There is so much to be glad about but as you say we can see nothing positive in the killing of those children and teachers. I was shocked to read that a gun can be bought so easily. Here is is not so. Thank you for the post and the photos.

    • Thank you, Lakshmi. I read that we have a nationwide law that makes handguns harder to get, but when it comes to rifles, individual states have different laws. It makes no sense. I’m glad your country has more wisdom about guns.

  5. I do not believe that all of our trials are blessings, especially not the death of a child under such circumstances. Death is part of the package of life; it is not negotiable. Let us celebrate the lives of those we have lost in yet another massacre. Let us celebrate the lives of those we love and the joy they bring into our lives. Let us celebrate the blessings that each day brings ❤

  6. I am the mother of a baby boy who died at 12 days old. He’d be 19 this summer.

    The blessings started early. He donated his heart valves to another child, and saved her several operations.

    Longer-term, his life and death led to our drastically changing the way we parented his older brother and younger sister. We also planted a tree in his honor.

    My heart is breaking for these parents who now have hollow, anguished, jagged places in their lives where their children were.

    This should not happen. And yet it does, again and again….

    • Thank you so much for sharing the wisdom of your experience. I’m very sorry for your loss and thankful for your blessings and deep understanding. May there somehow, someday, be moments of peace.

  7. Far from a rambling rant this is a cry of pain

  8. This is a wonderful post about a difficult subject, JoAnna. There are no easy answers, but I continue to hope that people good conscience, who happen to be in power, will do the right thing and at least try to solve the myriad problems contributing to this problem.

  9. The imbalance is too much, really. And it sure makes us feel like we’re out of hope. We need to hang on to hope though. Without it we will never recover.
    Thanks for sharing.

  10. Losing a child must be the worst thing anyone could face. So sorry about your sister.
    There is a gun culture in the USA; its a remnant of the Wild West. At that time Canada had the RCMP going to the ends of the continent to “get their man”. And our societies developed from there.
    The NRA is a huge problem; paying off politicians and promoting pride in gun ownership. They must be brought down!

    • It has occurred to me that our gun culture is a remnant of the wild west. Texas has certainly held on to that remnant. There’s something more, too. Maybe the revolutionary war. But whatever the source, we have to grow up/evolve into a more civilized culture. Thank you for your understanding and support.

  11. JoAnna, I hear and feel you. I’ve been sad and crying all week for the families of the 18 children and two adults who were killed in yet another mass shooting. I’ve been angry at the Republican Party, the NRA and the gun toting haters who believe 2nd amendment rights are more important than the lives of children. How do these people worry so much about unborn babies but turn their backs on living babies? I’ve been wanting to write about this too, but I fear I will only go on a rambling tangent. I am sad and hurting for this country, where we put objects and self above everything else, rather than understanding that loving and caring for people is the most rewarding and decent thing to do in life.

    • You make some excellent points, Mary, lilke about the unborn being more important that the children. I think they are confused about the second amendment. Times have changed since that amendment was written. Sigh. Loving and caring for people is the most rewarding and decent thing to do in life. God helps us.

  12. Hearts go out to all in grieving and in loss, Loved the photo shares JoAnna… Love and blessings your way ❤

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