Moms Columns & Blogs

Missing 19



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November 6, 2009



Brian would have been 19 years old today…



As impossible as it seems, today was harder than last year…  Three hundred sixty five days later, the battle goes on, more fiercely than before…  Months of rage and resentment have throttled thankfulness into surrender, at least for now...



Beth rode with me this morning to take pink roses to Pineville; the original cross vanished a while ago, but no matter…  The other trinkets and teenage treasures that marked the spot are gone too; the spray-painted tire outline has lightened, and will disappear before long.  Soon it will be like nothing ever happened here at all…  Dozens of cars fly by us, unaware of our occasion, focused upon their own destination at this noontime hour.  I think about how I, too, would like to speed far away from the impossible task of celebrating a birthday without the guest of honor…



John joined me on my trip to Forest Lawn this afternoon.  I fully intended to go alone, leave more roses, and have some quiet time on my own to think and pray, but he insisted…  I wish he had stayed at home; by the time we left there, he was fighting mad.  Repressed anger with Brian, God, and himself spewed out in a steady stream of rants and recriminations during the drive back.  I said little…you cannot comfort one who feels unworthy and dares you to offer it…  And really, the absurdity of saying ‘I’m sorry’ to him on this day of all days kept me quiet…



Grace flew the coop with her boyfriend as quickly as she could this evening, not that I blame her in the least.  The Butler vs. Independence football game was at Indy and she scored tickets; she could hardly wait to trade the heavy atmosphere of our home for the rush of athletic arch rivalry. Both Beth and Brian loved high school football games; they would argue stats before, during and after…  He would have been right there with Grace tonight, birthday or not…



For my part, I couldn’t bring myself to bake B’s cake…  After attending to the other things today, this final act of tribute and love was too hard, too overwhelming for me to even attempt…  No one else cared, but I felt as though I’d failed him somehow, silly as that seems.  I finally crept into his room and stared at the light in his window; this tiny candle, illuminated night and day for the past year, has steadfastly declared to the world that our hope lives on.  It shines even when we don’t feel hopeful.  Like tonight.  How I needed to see this little reminder of steadfast faith, eternal hope and never-ending love…



What are the chances?  A new co-worker and a dear friend each spent the day in a labor and delivery waiting room, anticipating the arrival of new babies in their families (one was born on November 6, the other was 15 minutes too late).  And Butler beat Indy @ Indy, 31 to 24, on B’s birthday, during what would have been his senior year…  How about that...three reasons to be thankful…



Happy birthday, B…miss you much…



Wishing you sunshine and always, hope…tg



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