Sunday, May 3, 2015

I get by with a little help from "his" friends . . .

I received this email last Wednesday - I didn't see it until Saturday (yesterday):

A while back I sent you the email below. But I wanted to update. Our baby is now almost 3 months old and in honor of our good friend, we made his middle name Michael.

Attached was this beautiful picture:

His name is Connor Michael B
He was born on February 9, 2015
He weighed in at 8lbs 4 oz.
What a cutie he is!! Don't you just want to mug on those cheeks!

Sabrina attached her original email which I don't remember ever seeing. She had sent it to me on the day Mike passed away and I guess I just lost track with all that was going on. It follows:

I am so sorry for your loss. It should never be that a mother has to bury her child & as a mother of 2 I can only imagine your pain and grief.
My husband met Mike about 7 years ago because they both had bikes and would ride together. I went to the gas station when Mike and my husband were there and we all became friends. That night Mike, a friend of mine, and I hung out together and stayed up late talking. I asked him "So why doesn't Matt have a girlfriend" and Mike said, "He just hasn't met the right girl yet, but you are probably it!" ... Mike was full of it because Matt actually did have a girlfriend haha. But Mike was right, when Matt hung out with me the next time he said "I actually did have a girlfriend, I went home and broke up with her after I met you." If it wasn't for Mike saying what he did I probably wouldn't have hung out with Matt again. And if it wasn't for Mike I wouldn't have married Matt.
Mike was the best of friends. He has enough health problems of his own that he didn't bring drama or problems into his friendship with his friend. He never once was rude or uncaring towards us. He was always there when we needed him, always listened, and always cared. We even had him be part of our wedding party. We loved him like a brother, he was always good to us. And for that I wanted you to know that I am pregnant and due in February and my husband decided that we wanted to make our son's middle name Michael after your son. We'd like to have a piece of him live on.
You did an amazing job raising Mike. You must have been a wonderful mother to raise such an incredibly kind and loving son. And I am so utterly sorry for your loss, but I do thank you for bringing a wonderful person into our life even if it was only for a few years. Thank you. Thank you very much.

I just wanted you to know that you are in my thoughts and my prayers.

Attached to the email was this picture:

Sabrina and Matt's wedding in May of 2009

As I was holding these printed pictures and emails in my hand choking back the tears of sadness and joy and bewilderment and pride - the house started to rumble and it sounded like the flight for life was coming toward the hospital down the street but I knew it was my boys . . .

Shine had something to show me . . .

Shine told me that Mike meant a lot to him and had touched his life. He wanted to have a piece of Mike with him always so he had RIP MAGIK painted on his bike. I am so touched that people remember my son in such special ways. Each person has their own story to tell and it is always truly magic Magik. . . :)

The boys know it is important to me that Mike's little brothers get to hear these stories. They all shook Richie's hand and then gave me a hug and were off to a Cancer ride. 

You can see in my hand I am still holding Sabrina's email . . .

It was a particularly tough week in that through judgmental words, I was thrust back into unwanted memories of some very challenging decisions I had to make as a mother of a special needs child and normal kids. They weren't easy decisions to make the first go around and to go back and revisit them was not healthy. It only leads to pain and despair. That was not something Mikey was fond of. So much so that he had it tattooed on his body. Julie shared these pics and it reminded me that suffering is optional!

This, along with some really awesome counsel from Christian friends, helped me through another rough patch.

I have done lots of things wrong in parenting these 4 blessings God has given me. This I know for sure. But, according to Sabrina and others, I guess I must have done a few things right also. Katie assured me by saying, "Mom, you weren't just a good mom to Mikey. You were a good mom to all of us!"

God is so good. Thank you to all Mike's friends who continue to share their pieces of Mike with me. Bless each of you.

1 Peter 1:6-7 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith - of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire - may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Blessings to you! Love, love, love.
P.S. Please don't judge parents of children with special needs. I pray you never know what it is like to walk in our shoes. Reach out and lend them a hand. Love it forward! Peace.


Anonymous said...

This is what bringing you through it looks like Gina :) You are moving forward and learning how special you were to Mike and are to all your kids, their friends and your friends. You are a very special lady Gina...don't ever let that go from our heart! Love you.


Rhonda said...

You are an inspiration and a standard for all moms to aspire to. Happy Mom's day tomorrow and love always.