Sunday, January 26, 2014

Thanks for the condolences...

It's been five long days. My grandson Wyatt's visitation is over and the funeral is over. I wanted to thank everyone for all the condolences here and on Facebook, and for all the emails -- they were so abundant that I quit trying to count them at some point. I hope you all know that they were each appreciated.

We had about three hours of driving time each day traveling to his home and back, and I spent part of it thinking. All my adult life, I've feared something happening to one of my girls, and as time went on, my grandchildren. I discovered on Wednesday that it's every bit as bad as you would imagine.

Over the years, I've watched other families in my small community deal with the deaths of children and grandchildren in fires, illnesses, and auto accidents. It's always been gut-wrenching to experience that as a friend, and sometimes as a teacher. I've watched the families go forward, staying strong. But life is never quite the same.

Sometimes, we wish we could hurry life along. We want to know what's on the next page. But I think I'm happy with the way things are. I don't want to know the future.

Four months ago, I'm glad I didn't know that the photos I was taking of him covered in mud after a football game would end up as part of the slide show at his visitation.

Three months ago, I'm glad I didn't know that one of the shirts I was giving him for his sixteenth birthday would be the shirt he was buried in.

Three weeks ago, I'm glad I didn't know that while I was listening to his excitement about spring music contest, I would soon be watching his choir director cry beside his casket.

I realize that not everyone knows my family situation. Like many people, I'm part of a blended family. Sometimes we've been more shaken than stirred, but in the end, it has somehow all smoothed out. I know that what I'm going through is not the same as what my husband Don is going through, because Wyatt was his "real" grandson, or whatever term you can come up with to distinguish relationships by blood from relationships by marriage.

It's not the same, but it's close.

On Thanksgiving, I knew Wyatt was having a hard time with the pain and recovery from his hunting accident. I sent him this text: "I know things are rough for you right now, but it will get better. You have a lot of people who care about you and will be giving thanks today that you are still in their lives. Hang in there! Love you."

I don't know when I'll be able to delete his reply: "Thanks for that. It made me smile. Love you too."

-- Debbie Sanders

19 comments:

jackie said...

There are no words right now that any of us could say to ease your pain so just know you are loved and being hugged and prayed for.
We all love you.

Darlene S. said...

I am so sorry for your loss. HUGS!!!

Colleen said...

Those are beautiful words. I am amazed by your strength and eloquence. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers.

Just_Lizzie said...

The emotion apparent in your words has brought me to tears. I too fear for my grandchildren; I guess it's a natural part of life.

God bless you all.

dawn said...

Dear Debbie and family,
I'm so very sorry for your loss. I worry these same things too about my own children, life is so precious and you need to embrace everyday.
What sweet memories you shared here of him, he knows you and many loved him. I don't believe family is just thru blood either, family is family plain and simple.
Hugs and prayers for all of you in these weeks/months ahead.
love,
Dawn

GLOANN said...

Beautifully written. Makes me feel some of the pain you and your family are experiencing and thank God for my family's blessings.

Kathy Humphrey said...

Your words echo every mother's and grandmother's heart. I used to fear having to go through losing a child and I fear going through the loss of a grandchild too. I know it does not matter really, whether by blood or by marriage, love is love.
Thank you for giving us this very personal glimpse into your world. Praying for you and for all your family.
Kathy

Marilyn said...

Simply beautiful...

shelley said...

Your words brought tears to my eyes. So sorry for your loss. Praying for your family.

BSI said...

Debbie my heart hurts for you and your family and I will keep you in my prayers.

nylene said...

I am sending you hugs and saying prayers for peace for you and your family. My heart aches for you.

Scrapthat said...

Oh Debbie I am so sorry to read all of this today.
Prayers for peace for your entire family lifted Debbie and hugs to you.

Carla said...

So sorry for your loss. Losing someone so young is something that no family should ever have to endure. May you find peace & comfort in the coming days.

Sharon said...

So sorry for your family's loss...being a grandmother, I too have the same worry of something happening to my sweet granddaughter. I hope that you find peace soon and may God bless you and your family.

Tammi said...

My thought and prayers go out to you and yours during this difficult time!! Cherish the memories you have made and know that one day you will be reunited. May the words you shared with your Grandson bring a smile to your heart and peace to your sou! Never delete them as they will be something you will cherish!! God bless!

Kimberli said...

I can't even imagine the pain your family is going through right now, you will all continue to be in my thoughts and prayers!

Bev said...

My grand kids are my favorite people in all the world. I'm so sorry for your loss.

Michele Mc said...

My heart aches at the thought. May you all find some sort of comfort in the coming days. Prayers.

Eri said...

My prayers for you and your family will continue. I know things will never be the same, but I hope the hope of eternity where you will see him again brings you some peace. May warm memories help ease the pain you feel.

You may want to look into the computer program called PhoneView. Depending on the type of phone you have, you may be able to download and save all the texts on your phone, including the precious response from Wyatt. That way you never have to worry about losing those messages.

Also, I have taken screen shots of important text messages, and actual photos of the screen of my cell phone before I had a smart phone, all for memory keeping.

Thinking of you...

 
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