I’m running out of pictures of you – to look at, to share with others, to display in the house; moments have all passed, and they’re passing even further away. Memories are all I have left until I see you again, and even those are becoming more fuzzy. Just last night, I was asking myself what your favorite food was, and I was getting it all mixed up in my mind. This still doesn’t make any sense. You were here one day and just gone the next. We were all living life to the full, you, me, Dad, Gabriella, Brian and Nate, then you were just gone – robbed from a life spent with us, and us robbed from a life spent with you. That’s when the brokenness came through and drained us of almost everything – leaving us near empty in just one instant. You were part of our world, and I’ve lived to keep it that way. Every single day since, I’ve worked hard to keep your memory alive, to remember you and the love you gave to everyone. It’s not easy, though. Especially, since you’re not really here. I know you are with Jesus, waiting so patiently for us. You aren’t suffering the way we’ve all had to without you. You’ve been made new and made whole; and in a different way – we’ve been made new, also. We aren’t the same family we always were. All of our ideals – the ones for you and for us – were gone two years ago. Our ‘perfect’ family of six made incomplete in one instant. Invaded by tragedy – you were stolen from us. And, for the first time in my life – there was NOTHING that I could do to fix it. Since, I was a little girl I had a picture in my mind of what my family would be. Coming to know God through the revelation of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice for me at the young age of nineteen only sealed the hope of having a wonderful life. I worked hard to make that happen, while Dad worked overtime to give us all what we needed. We shared so many special times together as a young family and truly, with the help of God, we had a beautiful life going on. But, October 24th, 2013, changed EVERYTHING for us. Our wonderful, beautifully, made whole family was shattered into what felt like a million pieces. I didn’t know how I could ever go on… Yet, here I am. Christiano, in your time here you taught me so much – how to care for a child, to be a good mother, to love, to have patience, to train and to disciple, to listen and to understand. But, in your death, you’ve taught me so much more. Because I couldn’t fix this, the loss of you showed me how to really let go and let God, to trust Him with my life even if I don’t always understand, to pour out my broken heart and to lay down my broken life before the throne of only one with the power to make me whole; and, God has been more than faithful. From the ruins, He has made us new and renewed our hope daily. I’ve learned to let him heal and mold and shape our family into what He calls it now to be. His beauty for our ashes; our lives for His glory. I’m so thankful for you, Christiano. I’m thankful that I got to spend 18 years of your earthly life, nurturing you, caring for you, loving you and mothering you. Most of all, I’m thankful for all you taught me. Just knowing that you are up there surrounding all of us in prayer and witnessing God’s restoration power in your family gives me such peace.Your light shines brighter, still, than anyone I’ve ever known. You continue to be a rare and beautiful soul who we all love and miss so greatly. You were always destined for greatness, and I can’t wait to hear of all the great things you’ve done when we are reunited in Heaven.
‘Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of <span class="footnote" data-fn="#fen-AMP-30214a" data-link="[a]” style=”box-sizing: border-box; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>[a]witnesses [who by faith have testified to the truth of God’s absolute faithfulness], stripping off every unnecessary weight and the sin which so easily and cleverly entangles us, let us run
with endurance and active persistence the race that is set before us…’ Hebrews 12:1