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Dear Mike ....

Dear Mike.

I know you are with me.

And I am ok.

Like you would tell me in the dark.

Each night.

I miss being your favorite person. And being told that every night.

But I know for a fact that you are still with me.

I know because...

Because on the day Grandpa died in November,

I was following Wes to their house.

On the radio came our song.

“Whatever it is”

However , I was present enough .

Here on earth.

Grounded here

in the moment

to realize something.

The radio version of the song

was 3 min and 29 seconds long.


I never knew that.

Or never had paid attention to it.

I noticed it as I searched for you and talked to you .

In the sadness of losing Grandpa.

I missed your voice , your embrace. Although the visual of you embracing him in heaven did bring a smile.

A friend shared with me when I told her the story ...

-Moments like this make you wonder if our days really are mapped out .-

We will always question that.

Wonder if that’s true.

Because on the flip side -why in the world did we have to lose our husbands , lose you , so young.

But , it makes you wonder .

Do we each have a purpose here?

Is there a plan ?

It has been ten months since I fell asleep next to you.

And last felt your physical touch.

We didn’t have much figured out about life or know much about marriage at all.

But that part ..we did.

The physical part we were good at that. 😳

(Sorry for embarrassing our family with this 🙈)

but if I’m being really honest and true and I am missing that now too.

( maybe less honesty next time 😜🤔)

I miss you.

But your love.

Our love is not gone.

It never will be.

I feel it more with each and every day.

I see it in J, C, and G.

Your kid’s are amazing.

They are brave .

But I would expect nothing less

Having you as a dad.

Jake - quiet and wise.

He can figure out how anything works and his brain is all you.

But his emotional state

is all me. 🤦🏽‍♀️

We are still struggling with bed time. Yes they are still sleeping on the mattress and couch in the living room. You would be so annoyed. Well actually Graham is still next to me .

The upstairs makes me and Jake sad at night , so I allow it. Until I lose my mind and make them try again to go back to their beds.

I have named 2020 “ the year of the mattresses “🤦🏽‍♀️

I hung your quote where Jake could see it when he woke up.

“it’s not whether you get knocked down but whether you get back up”

He made it one night and we felt proud of ourselves.

We know you would be proud.

His broken shoulder is healed. And he’s back to doing flips. He keeps doing the rubix cube and is teaching me how to do the third layer like you did. And Is going to play flag football soon. When he is focused , like you , he can accomplish anything.

Although he is often unfocused. Procrastinating like me. Haha

Their sweet counselor helped them make a book of Christmas wishes and gifts for you.

Jake’s only picture drawn was of an iPhone 12 plus. 🧡

He said he wished he could send you one. ( this is also all he wanted for Christmas 🙄)

Of course it pulled on my heart for may reasons.

What if you could have a phone there.

Then I wouldn’t be on this wild goose chase to Hear your voice.

But I had to laugh because he is Able to work me the same way you did.

And he knows That too.

He knows I won’t be able to keep my vow that he won’t have a phone until he graduates high school 😂

I’m sure y’all will continue to work against me on that too.

Celia pulled us through all of the holidays and Graham’s birthday. She made it happen.

Presents were wrapped, a million cookies were made, Packages sent. We had a white flocked tree and lights on the front of the house. A new daddy bird stocking hung on our mantle. ALL because of her.

She drug me through and I thank God everyday for her. She reminded me of all the good there was in each holiday. I know you are proud.

She can finish everything like you. And does whatever she sets her mind too. All the while talking about you, pointing out you everywhere. She’s the first to say 29 everytime she sees it. Every time it appears

In her virtual learning days.

She even repurposed your side of the bathroom to a coffee bar for me. Your sink and drawers she filled with k-cups and coffee mugs. Of course I saved most everything of yours in the drawers.but you would love it.

I think it was partly them teaming up against me on the plans to sleep back upstairs. Because now I wouldn’t wake them when I made my coffee 😜 but it made me smile.

I thought about how much you would love it. She is taking care of me each day. Making sure I still get coffee every morning. I know that is you in there too.

While we were in Louisiana last week

I healed a little more.

For many many reasons.

The crescent moon shined bright. All weekend.

Your dad made sure I knew that.

He always does.

Make sure I know that you are still with us.

And I am grateful

Thank you for your voice in my head

To be brave.

To tell me to go.

The last morning we were there.

Sweet graham and Ben had the most genuine conversation about death. Graham is trying to figure this out. This dying thing. He can’t quite wrap his mind around it.

He is trying to Figure out like me where You went.

Where you are now

And talks about you or dying often.

There is Nothing like listening to a 3 and 5 years old talk bout dying over a bowl of lucky charms at 9 am.

As Ben continued to ask Graham and everyone if they would too die? And we all each confirmed that we would.

He kept asking. He couldn’t comprehend it. Like , he was saying please tell me it’s not true.

His innocent 3 year old honesty is what we all wish deep down. Tell me we won’t die. Tell me it isn’t true.

But I was comforted by

Graham’s explanation of death.

His beliefs about you. And where you are.

-When you die , you go to heaven. You turn into an angel. And you come back as a red bird , a daddy bird-

Simply stated

By your 5 year old.

He is your little guy.

He is so stubborn🤦🏽‍♀️

He is courageous

He told Jake he wanted to be a

Police man.

You can imagine Jake’s response, his eyes got big,”I am definitely not going to be a police man “ 😆

And I graham that his

bravery , is you in him.

You that taught him that.

How to be brave.

He is funny , and make us laugh every night at dinner. When we all feel your absence and need a laugh. That is also you.

What other explanation could you need.

About death.

I think I will trust Graham.

You are our angel.

We know you are with us.

You are the kid’s daddy bird.

In each red bird.

Each moon.

Each 29 hidden in license plates.

( yep I search for each one, every time I get in the car ).

You went to heaven.

But you visit us daily.

And because of that.

We are ok.

At the end of our song , Zac Brown sings -

I love you , baby. Wherever you are out there.

It sounds like your voice.

When I hear it.

I know I am ok.

Keeping whispering to me,


Wherever you are out there, Mike ,

I will always love you.



I joined a meditation circle Wednesday night lead by two of the most inspiring people .

They shared this video.

I hope it inspires you too.

If we could just wake up each day


And live it like it’s

Either our first.

Or our last



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