The sun’ll come out TOMORROW
I cannot think about this word without remembering my Jennifer as a five year old singing this song at her kindergarten graduation. Dressed in her frilliest pink dress, long white socks, and pink hairbows, she fearlessly walked out on the stage and began the song as her teacher played the first notes.
The Annie soundtrack was the soundtrack of our little duplex in her first years of school. Any friend who came over joined in playing It’s A Hard Knock Life up and down the stairs to the attic. Jennifer and best friend, Brooke knew every word to every song of the movie.
Tomorrow is a word of hope to me, not to say that I’ve spent some sleepless nights worrying about “tomorrow’s problems”. But the optimist in me usually wins out and I’ve learned to put away those problems until tomorrow.
The worst thing about the deep grief I experienced after Jennifer’s death was looking at all the “tomorrows” without her. Looking at her room, her treasures from childhood, her baby quilts and toys — those were for her to keep if she chose, to give to her children. Even my collections of hand-made quilts and afghans from grandmothers, aunts, my mother, I looked at them and thought, “Who am I saving these for?” I learned that depression makes tomorrow look hopeless.
I thank God that with medication and time, depression seldom settles into its place in my heart.
Annie’s famous song of “Tomorrow” provides bookends to Jennifer’s life. Thirteen years ago she stood on top of Starr Mountain and looked over those rolling blue-green foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. She sang this song (“Tomorrow”) for her fiancé, Josh, and then ran down the trail. Minutes later she found a new tomorrow when she knocked on heaven’s door.
Today I thank God for
- His loving mercy through my dark valleys
- the hope of tomorrow
- for the 21 years Jennifer filled our lives with her smile and joy.