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Sunday, December 15, 2013

Seeing Jake, One More Time

I just have to say this. People should die after their funerals are arranged. I know that sounds totally crazy, but especially for a parent who is dealing with the loss of a child, there is just not any way that they can clearly think, to do all of this organizing and phone calls etc.  I could hardly get out of my bed. I could hardly move. I could not talk without crying. They probably have funeral planners that work much like wedding planners, except this child had no insurance and we didn't even know if he was going to get out of the morgue. 

 This is when God took over. I don't remember every detail, but I remember the love that was pouring out to us.  

  Kayla our daughter inlaw to be, set up a Pay it forward account. We didn't ask her to do that. We didn't ask for anything, but before we could hardly figure anything out, there was enough in that account to pay for cremation.  I figured if we had cremation and brought him home, that was enough for me. 

 But that wasn't all that God had in mind.  The next day Mike said to me "I want to see him again."  I told him that I had looked into the cost of a Wake where you borrow a casket and have a gathering the day before cremation and it was a thousand dollars more.  I felt very blessed that we had enough for cremation. 

 I am the one who usually expresses that I am believing God for something, so this shocked me. Mike said, "Well if God can provide for Cremation, He can provide for a Wake. I really want to see him one more time before he goes."

 Of course he wanted to. I am the one who spent close to a half an hour with him, after I found him. Mike barely got a glimpse, and my kids hadn't seen him at all. It is kind of hard to even believe someone is dead, without seeing them that way.  It makes it real, even though I personally do not like seeing dead people.
  
 I used to hide from going to funerals. I would have excuses. Death just scared me. Now I couldn't hide and I sure didn't want my friends to hide, as I didn't want to do this alone. Thankfully, most of them weren't hiders, like me.
  
 So I prayed for Mike's request to God and low and behold a few days later, we had enough to pay for the Wake.  I cannot tell you how grateful we were to the people who contributed to that. It was the most overwhelming part of the whole thing. People gave and I know that some of them didn't have much to give, but they did anyway.  I was so extremely humbled by that. 

 Cards started showing up in the mail box.  Some family members brought us food. 

 I still didn't have much strength to do much but lay here in my bed, stare at my computer, and cry over my son. I would look at his pictures and just cry. I thought that there could never be that amount of tears in my body. Prior to this happening, I was a person who rarely ever cried about anything.  
 Now I couldn't stop doing it.
  
 I knew at least now, that we were going to see Jake again, and some how we would make it through this. It was one week later that we had his Wake. 

  There were so many people at that Wake that we all hardly fit into the room. Nate told me later that he saw Jake in his mind and he was in shock at how many people came out to see him.  

 That was how Jake was. He would have been so overwhelmed if that had been his birthday.  He would not have known what to say. He was kind of a humble guy, who was not terribly outspoken, and a little shy.  I know he was shocked but Nate said he was also smiling.  

 I, however, tried to hug everyone and help everyone be ok. I felt so sad that this was tearing up my kids. I literally walked up the line that my kids all formed around the casket and hugged each of them. They were seeing this for the first time and they were all hitting shock.  They all handled it different. Matty hung behind me and held onto me most of the time. He was afraid to go up there.  Megan and Anna were totally crying hard. They really were broken. Nate was Jakes best friend and he fought back all of his tears. I was very worried about him for a while, but he is doing better. Jon was having a really hard time too, but Bri and Caleb were both just kind of quiet. Desi was running around with  her friends. She doesn't show pain in crying much, but usually anger and later on that hit her too. But they were all in shock and hurting. I hated that they had to go  through this.

  I tried to greet others, but my memory literally took a vacation that night. People that I even knew well came to hug me and I couldn't remember their names. I felt foolish about that. I greeted Anna's hubby's Dad, and just stared at him like, I know you from somewhere, but where?  

 That happened a few times and thank God people  understood, as I wouldn't have wanted any person to feel unwanted that night. I appreciated every one of them. 

  I got to meet more of Jake's friends that night, and I know they were suffering too. He had some awesome friends who were so dedicated to being there for him. I always appreciated that, as Jake struggled often with stuff related to his schizophrenia and he was never alone when he did. His friends were there. 

 I know God is real and I know there is a heaven, but why could I not just let Jake be there and be happy for him?  I don't have the answer to that really.  It is unspeakable grief that is probably lessened by that knowledge, but in no way, does it stop it.  Death is the end of an earthly relationship. I can no longer talk to him, touch him or see him.  Waiting for the day when I again run to him, takes a lot of faith.  I am trying to put that faith into action and not allow the pain to take me down so much.  

  I found that the only way through this tunnel was by talking about it to people. Every time I got to that place where I thought my body was going to implode with pain, I called a friend. For weeks my poor friends listened to me daily. This included my Mom. She even told me that I could call anytime I wanted to.  These people are worth more then gold to me. They sustained me when I thought I might go too.

  I felt so helpless that at the age of 59, I thought I needed someone to take care of ME. That didn't happen, but the feeling was there and real.
  
 Many people wrote to me and told me to call also, any time, but I only called my closest friends because I was too embarrassed to call someone I didn't know that well.  However just knowing that I had a line up of  phone numbers in case I needed them, really helped alot. I know I didn't have to walk this alone. 

 Thank you Lord for my friends and family. I love them all so very much and appreciate every one of them. We are so blessed that way.

 Jake was cremated the next day, never to be here again in body. Bye bye baby. I love you.

  Our family at: http://www.parentingfasdkids.com

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