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Not Goodbye…..Until we meet again.

Today is going to be a hard day for me my friends. Three years ago we lost my nephew. He was one of the most special people I have ever had the honor of knowing and loving. He was born with SMA – a severe form of Muscular Dystrophy.

He taught me so much and I won’t forget the lessons from either one. I will teach my children the lessons. Cherish your loved ones, time is precious, don’t get impatient – for this too shall pass, you are stronger than you thought you ever could be, breaking down doesn’t mean broken; but mostly how to love without boundaries.

Those and so many more. I grieve today for the memory of that day. But I grieve the hardest for the little angel who left. Both were senseless, both touched my life in a profound way. A day doesn’t pass when I don’t see those laughing brown eyes and that freckled face reflected in the eyes of my children. Today I grieve. I will never forget.

I miss him with a fierce ache this morning. But I sent my kids off to school and his mother can only cry today in remembrance of the days she did the same. And so it is with humble gratitude that I remember him today and his mother and father as well as our family.

RIP my sweet angel, take care of everyone until we meet again.

 

http://pricesec.com/ordinarygirl/?p=519

For about eight years this day has meant to me what it means now to all Americans. A day of remembrance for the greatest sorrow my generation and those behind me have born witness to. A day when the Nation’s heart broke as one, where our anger and disbelief flared as one, we bled together and shed tears as one. A day when we all stood shoulder to shoulder, division lines gone. It has changed our lives forever.

A year ago today, this day took on a whole new meaning. Hearts broke and tears shed for a great grief once again that could not be contained. For on this day the Lord took my nephew Garrett Allen Buthe, who had turned 10 the week before, into his loving arms and welcomed him home. I could not be at his side though I wanted to badly. We left when my son was 5 1/2 and peanut was just 2 1/2. I had promised my son we would be back to visit, and then four and a half long years had passed and life had gotten away from me, I hadn’t visited like I wish I had. I think they only made it back there once. I inadvertently broke a promise to my son and we both know it. I was able to attend his funeral thanks to the great generosity of a woman I didn’t know, but consider a friend now. She knew Garrett, had been one of his paras in school, and everyone who met him and knew him, couldn’t help but love him. It was the least she could do she said.

I remember this day so clearly….

They were very nearly brothers. Born into a close family and born with a mere 8 month difference in their age. Their fathers were brothers and they grew up as close cousins. I have such fond memories of them all. There was not a single bit of difference between any of them and they all loved each other mightily as children are so capable of doing. Want to play tag? Sure thing. Garrett tears out on his ‘hog’ and Ean and Alexandria join in on their bikes. See, not a bit of trouble. Down Uncle Cory and Aunt Lana’s driveway. The three of them were glorious together.

Ean, baby Alex, and GAB
 Watching them tear into Christmas presents together, or playing at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. Going up to the cabin with the family for the weekend in Fall River, where they would swim, and jet ski and boat. Where we would watch fireworks and celebrate the Fourth of July. We would lay on rugs and blankets in the living room of the cabin and watch movies and nap together. And there were always card games. Those days are filled with love and laughter. True they held their own trouble and stresses but there are things I would give anything to have back for even just a day. I will never again hear the sweet melody of the three voices raised in laughter together over something silly. There are things you miss so much and they are the little things that tear holes in your soul and let you feel the lonely wind whistle through.
His parents were and still are fabulous. Not a day went by that they didn’t make every wish or dream of his come true. In his short life he accomplished so much. From bagging a deer with his daddy, to scuba diving, to his Muscular Dystrophy involvement and the sweet love of his mother; there wasn’t anything I can see that Garrett ever lacked in his life. They filled it with all the love and excitement a child could desire. With more patience and endurance than I feel like I could do – they worked every day with him. Every Halloween came with an amazing, well thought out costume to include his ‘hog’. They would all head out together to collect the sweet treats in their grandparent’s sub-division. They parented in a way I wish I could always do. In a way that I will always admire and strive to emulate. And we all love with a desperation born of the knowledge that life is so fleeting and unfair at times.
Ten years ago, I dropped my baby off at the sitter and went into my college classes for the day. I was in school for Journalism at the time and we were in the first class of the day, which happened to be Reporting 101. We heard the commotion as it began, the professor stepped out and got some basic information. The whole class was begging to be let out to go into our press room. Then we laid the argument down that if something of great importance was happening, better than sitting in class reading a book, would be to be out there doing what it was we were meant to do, report. Finally after what seemed like forever we were out and staring at the T.V. The first tower had been hit, and the great dark plume of smoke froze our hearts in our chests. Not a sound was going on in the room. We all stood, eyes locked on the screen, hearts in our throats.
When the second tower was hit, the great torrent of tears poured out as we learned what our fellow brothers and sisters were going through. We watched the fire burn so hot that many chose to leap from the burning towers. We watched their bodies fall. And we cried, we raged, we demanded retribution from the ones who had struck at our souls. On our own soil. Then even more horrible than before, we witnessed the collapses of the towers and when we thought we couldn’t be more shocked or grief stricken, again the tears flowed unchecked down our faces.
The thought crossed my mind that people who were alive for the JFK assassination or the Challenger explosion had stood as a Nation united and grieved. Still somehow I guess I never thought something like that would happen in my lifetime, and you hope not in your children’s either. Yet here it was, that moment for our generation and theirs. We stood united again in grief and confusion trying to sort the pain. The professor in charge of the Journalism program called us to attention and said. This is your moment, you can’t stand here and do nothing. You are journalists, get yourselves together and get out there and get the news.
So we mopped our faces, sucked it up and did. But we also grieved. I sat at a bench watching a group pray around me and the flagpole. I felt a solidarity with them, though I did not physically join them. I thought of a good friend, who I knew was a fireman in New York. He had been an engine chaser when he was a kid, then a volunteer fireman when he was old enough. I knew he was there. And I prayed for him as well as all touched this day. We brought back the news. It was my honor to collaborate with a fantastic editor of The Lantern on the feature article. We cranked it out through tears and sweat. It was a one headline day, a triumph in the journalistic sense, and yet there was no joy in it. For one word was all that was needed to speak the depth of this atrocity.
My son was too young to know at the time, just barely approaching 2. But he was overwrought by it this year, when they talked about it in school for the 10th anniversary. I spoke quietly to him about it, while I held him on my lap, his head close to my heart; and I ached. A decade has passed. A year has passed. It still hurts with a burn that won’t stop. I won’t forget the lessons from either one. I will teach my children the lessons. Cherish your loved ones, time is precious, don’t get impatient – for this too shall pass, you are stronger than you thought you ever could be, breaking down doesn’t mean broken. Those and so many more. I grieve today for the memory of that day. But I grieve the hardest for the little angel who left. Both were senseless, both touched my life in a profound way. A day doesn’t pass when I don’t see those laughing brown eyes and that freckled face reflected in the eyes of my children. Today I grieve. I will never forget.
In Loving Memory
Where were you? I hope you are safe and blessed my friends.

Betrayed

Today I am sharing the story of my first miscarriage (2002). Between my son and my daughter. I was actually pregnant with her so quickly after the miscarriage (1 1/2 -2 weeks later) that I spent half of the pregnancy not sure if she was one of a twin because she measured very small. I was very sick while pregnant with her too, anemic and dehydrated, and spent my whole pregnancy terrified I would lose her as well. It caused me to have attachment issues with her. I was scared to hope and lose another baby.

 

miscarriage my little star

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Betrayed

The smells permeate her nose sharp and distasteful. The hustle surrounds her as she finishes the rounds on her hall, fighting the sharp pain in her side. She stops finally in the bathroom and prays the certainty growing in her mind is wrong.There it is, the tell tale spot and as her heart stops beating in her chest, she curls her fingers reflexively around her stomach. My baby.

She pulls the cloak of calm around her like a barrier and makes a beeline for the phone. One desperate call to the doctor later, she sits with clammy hands and a racing pulse waiting for the return call.When she gets the calm impersonal voice back on the phone, it says they want to see her for an appointment. Once again her heart stutters to a halt and she mechanically goes through her chain of command and once free she heads for the door on auto pilot. She imagines she must have driven there because she is behind the wheel as the car glides to a stop in the parking space, though she cannot for the life of her remember the road.

Two days she had defied him, two days she risked his wrath to try to prevent this very thing. She climbed numbly into her aunt’s van. They were on their way to the hospital. She stared out the window unseeing and started violently when the woman beside her spoke. “Do you know what today is?”

She stared at the woman for a moment as her brain chugged sluggishly into gear. “Uh, Friday?”. The woman chortled softly and prodded “Yeah but Friday the what?” The connection was made and resentment sprung to life as she glared contemptuously. When the woman turned to look at her all expression was smoothed from her face. She half smiled and said “That figures”. Her aunt laughed and said “Friday the thirteenth isn’t a terribly good day for this.”

“No sh!t Sherlock,” she muttered softly to herself. All her nerves were on fire both physically and mentally and her aunt was only making it worse. Why in heavens name would anyone with half a heart or brain even mention something like that? As if the dread in her heart wasn’t enough, let’s toss in the random dire portent. “Yeah I’ve read this plot line'” she thought bitterly.

The next thing that roused her from her benumbed state was lying in the dark in a gown, worn soft by all the washings. The ultrasound machine hummed to life and the cool air brushed across her cheeks making her shiver. The tech beside her uttered not a word as she pour on the warmed jelly and ran the wand across her belly that had barely begun to curve. She could see the amniotic fluid as a dark blotch on the screen, but the ominous silence hung dreadfully in her ears. Without a word to either her or the woman that sat next to her, strung tightly wound but blessedly silent, the tech left after instructing her to return to the room she was in before. Then her companion began to utter all the charming endearments we find spill heedless from the mouths of those outside the sucking black.

She felt drunk on dread, empty and scared. She knew he was at home, uncaring except for the burden of watching their small son. There was no comfort for her there. She was in the brightly lit, cheerless room; more fit for a holding cell. The bustle of the emergency room continued heedless of the way she drew taunt in expectation any time footsteps sounded outside her curtain. Finally, in strode the dark small man, he could barely bother to look at her as he uttered the pronouncement. “It is confirmed you are losing your baby”.

She thought she died in that moment, so heavy was the wall of pain and despair. Thru the haze she heard her aunt gasp, then watched the doctor’s head jerk up. His eyes were wide and horrified. “Oh my god, I thought the tech told you something”. He began to apologize profusely, though she scarcely heard it over the deep wracking sobs she heard coming from far away. Only barely did she realize it was her own voice that made them.The shell that remained of her, sat silent as stone, tears running down her pale cheeks, made ghostly in this moment.

The trip to the store for the prescriptions and the stop for a pack of smokes at her dull command seemed to be as pictures on a screen, as if she watched herself at the movies. When they arrived home, she stood uncertainly outside the van and spoke over her shoulder without looking, “Wait for me, till I see what will happen”. Her aunt made a noise of agreement, neither voicing what they knew to be the truth. It would not be pretty. For a long, dark, soul searching moment, she stared at the house. Every light in it was off and she knew what he would say, how he would react. The desperate corners of her soul begged for even a glimpse of light she knew in her heart would be denied her once more.

She entered slowly and quietly and when she paused in the doorway she heard his voice bite out of the darkness. “Where the fuck have you been?”. She felt the lash bite in and leave another welt upon her soul, but she was beyond the pain of that now. She was one of the walking dead. “I was at the hospital. I’m losing our baby”. Her voice was soft and pleading as she stared at the immobile back before her. “You mean you aren’t done yet?” She thought she was immune but the words cut her deeply and swiftly, in that moment slicing the thread that had been the love left for him. It vanished in the blink of an eye and she wondered for a second where it had fled so fast. “I need you. Say something, anything and I will stay. I need you dammit”. She heard his snort of disgust and could see in her minds eye the sardonic smirk that curved his mouth though she could only hear it this time. “Being a bitch isn’t the way to get anything from me”. She stared for one long moment at his immobile form, still facing away from her then grabbed her bag and walked out.

She returned to the van without an explanation, the woman did not need one. When they arrived at her aunt’s home, she stumbled out of the vehicle and collapsed on the front porch. “Please I need to call my mother.” When she sat gripping the phone in her hand she lit a cigarette and dialed the number. She sat praying silently and was grateful to hear her mother answer. Please God, let her be understanding, I couldn’t stand another rejection right now.……”I’m losing the baby mom”. She heard her mother weeping on the line. “I wish I was there for you sweetie”

She cried in sheer joy, her mother had never seemed to understand, to connect with her when she needed the softer side, always harsh and blunt. She grieved with her mother and the pain subsided a bit. They talked for a while until her stomach began to hurt in earnest. “I have to go mom, I love you”. She sat looking at the stars smoking and grieving and wondering why for what seemed like forever.

When the moment finally came for her angel to go to heaven she could not physically deal. Crying hysterically she called out for her aunt who rushed to her side. She heard the sound of rushing water come from behind her and felt the motherly arms of her aunt around her. She curled in upon herself.

She lost their child that night, alone in the darkness.

She thought. A hand smoothed her brow as a mother does a child, though she was grown and a mother herself and she floated slowly into the blessed relief of sleep. The agony in her soul was sharp. She grieved the loss of her child, she grieved the loss of him undeserving of it as he may be, she grieved the loss of the dream she had of family and happily ever after. After all, maybe he was right. Maybe it was all her fault.

Drifting in the final moments of lucid thought it echoed, “you will never be good enough…………. you will never be good enough”. A tear slid silently into her hair.

 

It was definitely one of the most heartbreaking moments of my life. I have gone through two others in the last 3 years. It’s hard to talk about and to find people who are comfortable talking about something like this, let alone understanding it. Maybe I wouldn’t have spent so much time alone and scared if I had known where to go. If I had had someone tell their story and offer their hand. Please know you are not alone. Just because your child has gone to heaven does not mean you aren’t still a parent. That loss hurts too. It is okay to think about them and to talk about them. Please feel free to contact me or find a group called Miscarriage Matters on Facebook. Click their name and follow the link. You are never alone.

Until we meet again my friends, stay safe, be blessed and know you are loved.

 

The Aftermath – Fingerprint Friday

And still much to be done

The house in the background has a tree in the center of it…I hope the family is safe

What is left of our ‘neighbors’ homes in Cleveland
And some had nothing left.

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Fridge and sink from the house that was
completely destroyed across the street.

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God Bless the South – and all those affected
photo by: Braska Givens

No other words will suffice – these are the deep fingerprints left in our homes, our backyard, our lives and those of our fellow Americans. Please pray – or lend a hand. People are desperate. May you all be blessed and safe!!

For more fingerprints check out The Rusted Chain

~It only takes a small spark to ignite a wildfire~

It only takes the tiniest flicker to start a raging inferno again, even if the embers were so dim they could barely be seen. It is there, inside each one of us. Sometimes life hides it from us, sometimes we hide it from ourselves, but it is always there, dormant, just waiting to be revived.

One of my favorite quotes says it best: “Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light.”
~Albert Schweitzer

It is human nature to hope, to dream. When that dies something integral to your being is lost. We have forgotten and put aside the fire of our youth, settled into life as we know it now. Citizens, parents, adults and children; there is work to do, chores to take care of and errands to run. We all share the same paths though the destination is different. Some paths cross for a brief moment and others meander deep into the wilderness to give you time and space to figure out your life. People will come and go like the tide and occasionally you will find a gem among the sand as the waves wash away other tracks.

There is a coolness as you dive through the depths – we stop and hover because it feels good. You cannot hover forever in that space between the surface and the depths; you must push forward into the darkness, do not lose hope. For though we cannot see it at the moment, the light still exists. Suddenly, as if it had never been cold and dark, it springs up and encircles us. Yes it hurts at first, for when you go through the fires of life, you are being refined. The burning off of impurities is the only way to become more. If you hang onto those flaws or excuses they will ever be the card you play anytime you are confronted with stepping outside of your zone of comfort. An altogether too familiar habit for a lot of people, including myself if I’m to be perfectly honest.

We fear the burning. We burn, we burned, and we will burn again. Yes there are good fires.Often fire disposes of accumulated debris, enriching the soil by speeding nutrient recycling or retarding the growth of shrubs and grasses that would otherwise crowd out recently planted seedlings. Some of them burn deeper leaving behind blackened husks. The risk of personal ‘errosion’ is the same as the land when a severe burning has happened. It is not a time to mourn, but rather a time to begin planting anew, so that we do not fall to the first storm to come our way.

Now with all that said it is a brutal process, you feel lost, helpless off balance. These are our times of greatest struggle and greatest fear. But it isn’t brave if you aren’t scared right? That is when you must grasp ahold of the flaming spear and thrust it deep into the wound to be cauterized. Are you strong enough?

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain.

~Dune – Frank Herbert~

We let these fears keep us from cleansing the wound, from replanting after the damage is done. Why do we do this? We let ourselves be immobilized. Frozen and staring as we are burned into cinders. Now is the time, here is the place to stand back up on your feet again and start walking. You will only see destruction if you look at the surface – which is where the fear exists. Take a breath, let go and take the plunge today. Step out of your comfort zone, change the world, do something new; lets set this world on FIRE!!!

R.I.P. Sweet Angel…

My heart is breaking right now and I fight to see through the blur of tears. My Aunt passed away today. Cancer, that awful faceless enemy, has claimed another life. I know that she is with our Lord, I know that she was with family and is now, I know also that the angels were around her bed as well. But still I grieve.

My heart grieves a beautiful, womanly soul. A quiet, gentle, loving woman who has always been a rock. Her children are all good people and I can’t remember her ever raising her voice (not even when we couldn’t quit giggling upstairs that summer). The light dims as a candle is snuffed, though heavens light shines brighter for it. Her children, my cousins, my blood – they have lost both parents and my soul aches and prays for them. We are all so young for so much grief. I watch the love as my family gathers close once more to support one another and I have never felt so lonely in my life.
Grandpa’s passing was hard on us all, especially Grandma, and now to lay to rest her daughter after losing her soul mate? How much can one person/each of us bear? Does enough grace come for each day? Why do I feel like I have to hoarde it then as if there isn’t enough to go around? Why do I feel weak and emptied? How come it hurts so much damn it all?

ARE YOU THERE?!?! ARE YOU EVEN LISTENING?!?!?
I’M MAD AND SAD AND CONFUSED. But most of all I’m hurt and want to curl up like a child in someone’s arms.
I will miss you always Aunt Pat. You have been a blessing to everyone your life has touched. We may have ‘lost you’ from your earthly home, but we will meet again upon those golden shores. Give Grandpa a hug and tell him we love him.

IT’S THE CLIMB………………….Thanks y’all-s, thoughts and reflections

First of all I would like to start by thanking Debi and her husband Robert for making this trip possible. Being a journalist and finding myself at a loss for words isn’t usual for me. :p As hard as it was to say goodbye, thank you from the bottom of my heart for making it possible for both my son and I to have that opportunity. We BOTH needed it and the pain will ease but the regret would have lasted forever. May God bless you and yours for the unselfish generosity, loving compassion and honor to Garrett that you showed by sending me those tickets. I am forever in your debt and mightily humbled by how loving of a God we have.

Secondly, I would like to say it was truly a pleasure to meet Kellie, her children, the new baby (aka chunky monkey), and all of the extended Buthe family, as well as seeing everyone I knew from the family there as well as friends from long ago. Saddened as we all were by the reasoning behind it all. I am honored to call you all family, you made no differentiation between me and Ean and I cannot tell you how welcomed, comforted and part of it all that made me feel. Thank you, it would have been difficult without family by our side. Thank you for the warm and open love and welcome you gave to my son, he NEEDED that family connection and you guys were wonderful! Gloria, I hope that this past few days has changed you as it has I. I feel as though we could have a great and close connection not only with us but the kids as well. And it is comforting to know that they have those family roots and connection there and now they, especially Ean knows that. And again, it was EXACTLY what he needed. From the depths of my heart thank you. <3

Thank you to my awesome Kansastock crew (Ames, Coleo and his lovely gf Arielle) for the love and support and in person hugs and time spent with me. Arielle is lovely, intelligent and just perfect for Cole. You could see the spark between them and my aunt even asked me when y’all were getting married. She went out of her way to bring her and Cole to meet my aunt and I at the mall, just so they could support me and give me a hug and I could meet the wonderful woman who stole our best friends’ heart. *on a sidenote, the brownies disappeared, did not make it home with me and I didn’t have a single one )-; but THANK YOU for sending them.

All of my galz who offered all their words of love and support as well as prayers through this whole difficult time, thank you. I know you will all say “pshaw, it was nothing you wouldn’t have done for us, what are friends for” but there are no words for how soothing that was to my soul. <3

We took Ean to see his father’s grave (since GAB was going to be buried next to him and I wanted him to be prepared ahead of time). All in all I think it went well. Gloria, Ean and I cut fall flowers for his headstone planter, Ean carefully trimmed the grass away and had a few private moments to himself. He didn’t say much but he seemed thoughtful. I wouldn’t say upset but hopefully it gave him some needed closure.

As I drove around my old hometown I found that though there had been changes, it was still very much the place I remember. I felt pretty nostalgic as I toured old areas and these lyrics ran through my mind by Toby Keith……Something made me smile. Something seemed to ease the pain Something about the universe and how it’s all connected. I felt how deeply I had changed and the rightness of that change. I KNOW for certain in the depths of my heart that the move was the right thing to do, that the universe had aligned in my life the way that it was supposed to unfold, that however does nothing to stem my grief or my regret at them not having those years together. I wish I could give those 5 years back, but the path cannot be untraveled and so my peace with it all has been made, and allowed another door to open. We look forward to the kids enjoying long summer visits with their family.

I left the young, in love, foolish, untrained girl behind with you and only the woman returned. I’ve let go of all the what ifs and anger and regrets now I hope for peace and healing to flood in.

Lana, Cory and Kellie, I cannot tell you how deeply sorry I am for your loss. I can only say that as deeply as I feel it cut me it has to be 1,000x harder for you. Nothing could ever hurt as badly as having to bury your child, especially so young. I felt the brush of it when Aley and Alexandria had that wreck and it horrified me. As you go know that there are many many people praying for peace and healing and standing around you to support you when times get rough. The grief will never leave but I hope for you an easing and a knowledge that this isn’t goodbye only until we meet again.

Thank you to the Harley bunch, it truly warmed my heart and I know GAB was smiling down when y’all pulled up to pay tribute to such a powerful young soul.

Karen and the CDC crew: it was AWESOME to see you and I <3ed Ean’s face when he saw and remember y’all. Each little connection was such a powerful comfort to him.

My nephew’s funeral was packed, so was the overflow room and I believe there were people standing in there. There were many many more who wished to be there and were unable to do so: Awe insipiring how powerful his impact was in the time that he spent here. I hope that everyone remembers that and takes from it the knowledge that your OUTLOOK on life has a power to effect other and change the world. We can choose everyday to hold our heads up and keep going no matter what life may throw at us with the knowledge that there will always be hope, there will always be dreams and even when life knocks us facedown in the dirt or throws a curve that we cannot begin to understand that we can keep climbing and choose to never quit. How could any of us do less than Garrett with all that he faced with courage every day of his life?

Joel, thank you for the ride from KC to Augusta, it was much appreciated. Kate & Steve thank you so much for opening your home to us we appreciated the support. And I cannot thank you enough for the loan of your vehicle while I was there it made it possible for me to be a part of what I needed to when I needed to.

I am sorry I missed many people I would have liked to spent time with and hope they understand that it was certainly not personal it was just really hectic and emotional. I am hurt by the insinuation that I was not under an obligation to spend every moment with my “Buthe” family because I flew there ONLY FOR MY NEPHEW’S FUNERAL , however that was such a tiny blip and I’m certain wasn’t meant in the way it came out, I was awfully raw and emotional at that time…..

Thank you for the “special gifts” for my children to have a “piece” of GAB with them always. I appreciate the unselfish generosity.

In conclusion, the hole left behind by that little freckle faced kid will gape large and raw for a long time for a lot of people. Let us turn our minds towards “solutions” to the situation by using our energy to support people who supported GAB through his life. MDA was a HUGE part of Garrett’s life and they were his other family. Please support MDA and honor the memory of those who lose this battle every day. Ewalt elementary school taught GAB from Pre-K-3 and all of you showed up in force many time to support them and never made GAB feel as though he were any different. We should get more involved with supporting our schools, in our children’s educations, and in making changes where we can when we find lack.

Most of all, thank God for every day that you have. Each one is a gift and may house a memory to cherish for a lifetime.

RIP?

This is a video of one of the songs played at the funeral and it really touched me:

too bad Miley sings it, LOL……………J/K