Finding God’s Comfort Through Loss

“Just go downstairs and wait for your aunt, she’ll be here soon,” my mom said.

I can hardly wait. Our aunt is taking us to Kiddieland. I start going down the steps and make up a new song, using words the grown-ups were using. When you’re only 6, you don’t know what all the words mean, but you can still sing them.

“Yia Yia’s dead…Yia Yia’s dead…”

I see Aunt Jeanette coming up the stairs. She hears my words, rushing past me.

“Wait! Aren’t we going to Kiddie…?” I call out. But she doesn’t stop at all.

The Meaning of ‘Dead’

Mom and dad tell us “Yia yia is dead,” but they don’t tell us what that means.

Maybe it means we won’t see her anymore. Billy is dead and we don’t see him anymore. Yeah, that’s what it probably means.

Everyone is wearing black. There is no more room for smiles, just sad faces and people crying everywhere you look.

I think of my Yia Yia. I wonder when she’ll be back.

Message from Above

My Child,

You were so young to lose your Grandma. The one who loved you just as you were. The one who always had a sparkle in her eye when she heard your voice or saw your face.

Your Yia Yia was a special gift from me. I knew you would love her. She was a kind woman who liked to cook. It was hard for her when her eyes stopped working. It was even harder when she got very sick.

Know this, my child. Even when her body stopped working, her heart never stopped loving you. You and your Yia Yia shared a name, and a special bond.

I know you didnt understand it when she died, and I know you were confused. Im sorry it was hard for you, but I want you to know one day you will understand.

One day, when you and I are together you will understand it completely.

But for now, hold onto the memories tucked inside your mind. No one can take your memories; they are a special gift.

When you look up at the sky at night, know that I am looking down at you, smiling. Remember I made all those stars and I hung them in the sky. I even named every single one. Thats how important they are to me.

But the people I made are even more important. It doesnt matter how many people there are, each one is very special to me. I thought you should know that.

I love you.

Yia Yia

Her silver white hair
pulled back in a bun;
the soft lines in her face
framed her dancing brown eyes                                                                     which no longer registered faces.

She matched little faces
with familiar voices
and made grandchildren out of them.                                                                         She wore gentleness every day                                                                            layered with grace.

Strange sounding words                                                                                    tumbled out of her Greek mouth,                                                                     puzzling young listeners
who learned to read her smiles.

I miss sitting at her kitchen table                                                                          when cups of white coffee
were placed before me,
laden with heaps of sparkling sugar                                                                     sweet to my soul.


I miss my Yia Yia and I think of her whenever I smell freshly brewed coffee.


This is an excerpt from Always There: Finding God’s Comfort Through Loss

To find out more about Always There, visit Anne’s website:

Read more from Anne on Open to Hope: Wishing Doesn’t Change Things – Open to Hope


Anne Peterson

Anne Peterson is a Christ follower, a poet, speaker and published author of 16 books. Through the many losses Anne has experienced in her life, she has felt God’s wonderful comfort. Her desire is to share words that will give hope to those who are hurting. Anne's tagline is: Life is hard, I write words to make it softer. Anne has also authored 42 published Bible Studies and about a hundred articles with’s Christian Woman. 
 Many of her articles have been seen on For the past 28 years, Anne’s poetry has been available in gift stores throughout the U.S. as well as in 23 countries.

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