About the Author

I am a daughter, wife, mama, sister, friend, missionary, writer, but above all Christ-follower. I write about all of these and our journey to move long-term to Eastern Europe. He is Worthy of all of our lives.

(in)side DaySpring: things we love
& you will too!
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(in)side DaySpring:
things we love
& you will too!
Find more at
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Reader Interactions


  1. crying and thankful you found a name for it…so sorry for your loss and sadness…your words will be hope and healings for many.
    woke up to find you here today:) i’m glad there are others who ask themselves what is going on in moments when emotions erupt…
    love you~

  2. this is a beautiful piece, abby. coming tounderstand our grief is an arduous yet amazing process. i lost my 22-year-old nephew a little over a year ago. it was sudden and shocking and horrible and a season of anger followed. the ouchies sneak up and grab me from time to time….the Lord has been faithful to our family and we’ve grown and moved and loved through it but only with the grace of God.

    • It really is, isn’t it? I love that you see that…she was (and is) such a mother…a beautiful legacy, no doubt:)

      thank you.

  3. Wow…this was just beautiful. You put into words some of what my grief journey has been. I have lost 3 babies in the last 4 years. While the loss is different from yours the grief is similar. It has been almost 10 months since my Abigail Eden went to be with Jesus….oh how it still stings to even type that. But the grief emptied me like never before and I know now I have been filled with Him. Not so that I forget her or the others but so that I remember His grace and mercy and the ways He has walked this with me.
    Bless You.

    • Bless you Jen. What a beautiful testimony to Him…this is grief I have not experienced and cannot imagine but praise Him and thank you that you proclaim His goodness from such deep pain.

      Praying for you in this journey…with love, Abby

  4. The loss of a loved one takes us on such a journey. I lost my mom to cancer when I was a teenager. The Lord continues to teach me things through this loss and for that I praise Him!! Beautiful post 🙂

    • Knowing you lost your mom as a teenager, this is a gift to me. That you share this loss and cancer, but that you’ve found the grace since a teenager to love Him in this great loss…I was 28 when I lost my mom and though it seems young, I know it could have been so much earlier and what she gave to me until the day she died is all the treasure of a mama heart and life and one that loved Him and though she fought for life here, she loved Him most and so bore the leaving…

      Thank you again. His mercies are new every morning…I so feel this in how He’s carried me since mom died and how He shows me more and more what it is that she is with Him in Glory and there’s that part of me that is with her and longs for Home and Heaven even as I live and love and fight for it here.

      Thanks again Eileen.

  5. “I can become the legacy. Be the pursuer who loves.”

    That’s where I am. I’m not yet at the grief tears are water of life, or root becomes tree…but it’s good to hear where this is headed! I keep saying to people, “I wish you knew my mom.” She too died of cancer, at 77, and I thought she’d live to 90 like her mother did! I was 40, and that’s a biblical number. As I prayed before she died, asking God who would love me in ways she did, he answered me and I began to see that all of her love came from him. Indeed she had told me she asked him to make her loving! Now I rise in the morning with the same prayer: Give me YOUR love, o Lord.

    Thank you for writing. Everything you wrote to the point I have quoted is stuff I’ve said! So I trust your witness to his making a tree of life out of a root of grief, when we bring our grief to him. Thank you.

    • Dear Beth,

      Thank you for your honesty and how encouraging that this way He’s taken me is your journey too. He has made us for community!

      How long has it been since you lost your mom? As I wrote here, it took me years and I rejoiced in this epiphany of sorts…truly, I am seeing that tree of life grow!

      And I love your honest prayer to show you who would love you in ways she did. There is nothing like a mama’s love…so many have never known such mothers and this is always close too…but how this speaks to Him whose love is Everlasting to Everlasting and a million other things and more…

  6. Abby,

    Thank you for this post and for praying for us. I lost my mother 10 years ago when I was 21. I too miss her the most when I know she is the only one who would understand. I miss that we were just becoming friends after the teenage years! I miss being able to go shopping on a Saturday or on family vacations with her there. She was the best mother and God gave me to her in His infinite wisdom. I can now be thankful that she is healed from cancer and spends eternity praising Him. She mothered me so well in 21 years that it will last a lifetime.

    • tears prick my eyes as I read your comment.

      Yes, we do miss all of these things in a mama. And 21 is so young. I feel like I was just coming to love and understand my mom for who she was and not my ideal of what she should be in the end…those terminal ending days caring for her and just holding onto her with all I had.

      My now 97 year-old Swedish grandmother (mom’s mom) always says, ‘you never outgrow your need for a mother.’ How precious and to know that these tears are good and can bring new levels of communion with Him and life.

      But, oh, the missing too…thank you sister for your real heart and for loving such a mother.

  7. Yes, I know those waves of grief well. My friends and I call it being “ambushed”! Thanks for the reminder that those moments are also an invitation to take another step toward healing. You’re honoring the legacy of your Mama beautifully, Abby.

    • It really does feel like being ambushed! doesn’t it?

      Thanks Holley. It means a lot to hear I’m honoring her legacy…sweet peace to know she smiles from a place I will one day be and long to be in new ways since she’s gone before.

      Thanks again and for the opportunity to share here:)

  8. Oh Abby, I want to give you hug, and praise you for sharing.

    Unexpected grief has visited me lately. I’ve been surprised at seeing it just sitting next to me throughout the week. I love the idea of a tree of life out of a root of grief, your creativity, and your heart.

    So beautiful.

    • thank you friend.

      I was watching ‘We are Marshall’ with my Dad when he visited around mom’s birthday and there’s a great line by the Dad who lost his wife and then his son in the tragedy, it’s just ‘grief is messy.’

      My Dad thought that was a perfect line…he’s re-married and it’s a very good thing, but grief IS messy.

      Loving that He takes a mess called grief and even and especially here brings new life. Only Him.

  9. Dear Abby,
    Thank you for sharing this. May the Lord continue to heal you as your grieve the loss of your dear Mother. I am inspired your open heart and the vulnerability of your writing. You are allowing God to use the hard stuff in your life for good and His glory and to heal and bless others.

    I prayed the prayer you asked us to, for God to show me the root of my grief. I’m thinking of my childhood. Just the other day my husband told me he thinks I’m deeply wounded from my childhood. Thanks for asking people to pray that. I think it opened doors for healing in lots of people’s lives.

    You’re a blessing!

    • Amber,

      You are so encouraging and priceless…thank you.

      And even though it seems very much like the beginning of a journey, I am thankful that you sense your grief is from your childhood…or the kind that’s holding you back is there. I know the Lord will show you more of this…I am praying that you see all He’s done and how He loves you daily even as you wade some deep waters, knowing that it is His love that will ultimately heal you.

      Thank you for being vulnerable here and for your friendship.

    • So sweet to see you here, Amber! Can I join in, as well, with your prayer … I will pray along with you that God will show you the root of your grief that you mentioned. Love you, dear sister-in-Christ, and friend …

  10. Abby, What a dear post! I lost my mom just three years ago, and could totally relate to your words. I was blessed to have her for 50+ years, but as I always tell friends, you are never ready to lose your mom. Thanks for sharing your tender heart with all of us.
    God bless you! Deb

  11. Thank you for writing this, it brought hope to my heart. I’ve been feeling overwhelmed with grief since my newborn son went to heaven 3 months ago. Reading this today reminded me that God’s love and grace will get me through this.

    • Dear Lisa,

      I am praying for you right now…only imagining how overwhelming these days are…I thank the Lord that these words could speak into your heart and know it is because no matter what the grief–He is our hope and promises to make a way where there is no way.

      Because He is Who He says He Is…I trust you to Him to walk with you…praying His love and goodness into your heart.

      with love and prayers, Abby

  12. This is so beautiful, Abby. I loved reading this: “And stepping further, I can become the legacy. Be the pursuer who loves. Turn my own grief into new life as a memorial to the one who so deeply loved.” Taking the hard things of this life, and turning them around, and using them for good. You are a beautiful example of this … and all praise to God, who carries us through our grief, and uses all things for good.

  13. Abby, this was beautifully written, and I think you speak to a very-real emotion of grief flooring you out-of-left-field. Thanks for the encouragement to let grief and loss be used of God to morph into greater Love and Grace and Redemption.

    Your Mom would be proud of you, I am thinking.

    • Thanks Laura…what a wonderful thing to say…I don’t think anything means more to someone who’s lost her mama:) thank you!

  14. “the person who understood me the best and pursued me the most.” you captured, in these few words, TRUE LOVE — what we all need desperately to have and to be. i ache for your loss; i praise God for your wisdom; i thank you for sharing it all.

  15. Thank you for sharing this. I am sorry for your loss and for the pain you have experienced, but I praise God for the revelation He has given you (and now us) about how grief can lead to life. A powerful truth!

  16. Keep it up, Abby–your beautiful writing that puts words to feelings, emotions, ponderings. It is three years since my mother went home–next week. Yes, she is always there. May peace overflow you!

  17. Abby, today I was searching for “How Or show me how to Grief; and came across your current article. With tears in my eyes, I celebrate how brave you come across. I was also brave when my daughter Ceci, 45 yrs.,was diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer Stage 4, matastized in the liver, on 2/23/11. My daughter Ceci, went to be with our Lord on 4/18/11. These past ten days, I am weak with grief for her loss. Thank God for my Grandson, Max. Keep writing for us. I will pray for you. Your-Sis-in-Christ, Maria.