Monday, September 2, 2013

A letter to my Son

Today would be my son's 18th birthday.
How does one celebrate a milestone when their son resides with the King of Glory?
I can't wrap my arms around this idea. 
Today he would have left for boot camp.
Crystal and many others leave today to start new chapters. 
How do we move on?
What does that look like?
Dear Elijah,
Today is your 18th birthday. We won't get to celebrate with you. We won't sing Happy Birthday. There are no presents. I won't make you an ice cream cake or a cheesecake that you loved so much.  Instead there is a gaping hole, and we are left behind. I still can't believe it. There are a thousand things we haven't done together. Our family is so incomplete without you. Clarissa has lost her confidant and friend, Cedric, his antagonist and role model, Ana, her rock, Ella, her jungle gym, Chelsea, her bickerer, Lilah, her uncle and Adam, a brother in law. Daddy and I. . . I can't even put into words what we have lost.
There are a million questions I have unanswered. 
There are unnumbered why's. . .But I have no regrets. 
You knew I loved you. 
I told you countless times.
And I know where you are.

 I am so proud of the man you have become. I know it hasn't always been easy. You're red haired temperament has always been a struggle for you; wrestling with many topics far beyond your age or wisdom. . .But you wrestled and you were honest. Your faith strong. . .Farm living has been hard and demanded many hours of your time, possibly even your life.

I loved your laughed. I loved waking you up each morning and watching you snuggle down. . .not wanting to get up. I loved knowing you were home safe in bed. I loved your sense of humor and sarcasm and lopsided grin.

 I want to yell at you for playing x box instead of doing chores, I want to close the door because your drumming is so loud. I want to be distracted 100 times by all the you tube videos you  need me to see. I want to see you run up and down the stairs for all the things you forgot. I want to see you dressed to the nines for church. I want to see you pull in the driveway with your car and park so I can't get in the garage. . .

I want you to be getting things ready for an air soft war that's happening today.

But you wouldn't have gone to the air soft war. 

You were headed off to real war. 
You were heading to boot camp today to begin your dream of being a
 United States Marine. 
We would be saying good bye today.

Instead we said Good Bye a month ago.
You're work here complete.

The pain of loss is overwhelming at times. 
All these emotions drive me to my knees and cause me to do the only thing I can,
 and that is to surrender. 
I surrender all I am to the King of Kings. 
Because I am worn. . .I hurt. . .I long for you to be here. 

What was it like when you met Jesus? 
Did you stand in His presence? Or to your knees did you fall?
 Did you dance or drum? 
No matter what; I bet it was wonderful.

And someday. . .I shall see you again.
Until then. . .
I will fix my eyes on the One that longs to heal my broken heart.
I will choose to Praise when I feel weak.
And I will celebrate your birthday with friends.
And we will remember. 
Happy Birthday 18th birthday, Elijah.


You would have made a great Marine. 
And I am proud to be your mom.
I just wish I had had more time. . .
All my love,

Psalm 127:3
Children are a gift from the Lord;
    they are a reward from him.


  1. Tammy,

    We were thinking of you and your beautiful family yesterday. We knew today would have special meaning.

    When I talked to Elijah at the farm in June, I was struck at what a fine young man you raised. He was complete.

    Instead of taking orders from the US military, he'll be directly serving the Prince of Peace.

    And your mission continues here in Vermont. Sharing your grief and love and faith.

    May God bless you all in a special way on Elijah's birthday.

    Peace and prayers,


  2. Tammy, I have been following your site for a while and marveled at your beautiful postings and faith. A month ago I read your posting and my heart sank. Now I read with a broken heart for you and your family, but marvel at your faith. How strong you have stayed through God. You have made me stronger in my faith through your testament for him. I pray for you and your family and know that he hears. I do not know you personally but I feel somehow looking at your post of the farm and your beautiful family, that I do. I look at the pictures of Elijah, and my heart breaks for all that knew him and loved him. You are an amazing person and mom.

    1. Thank you for your prayers. . .and love. May we all grow through this valley and come out stronger and more in love with God. . .May He use this to proclaim his majesty.

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  3. Tammy,

    I want to drive to VT & give you all hugs. Today is hard for all of you. Elijah is watching you with the Lord. He will be with you everyday.




  4. Happy Birthday Elijah......You have a great birthday present, the hug of the lord. Your wrapped up in his sweet embrace. Who could ask for a better gift. We miss you down here but your safe. I love that your Mom loved you sooooo much. And shes right so many unanswered questions. I know your happy to know your family has embraced you so much. You were still so loved...God bless your soul.
    Tammy your a wonderful mother, i cant imagine a greater mom. Your distraught but still strong. Your empty and half full because a apart of you is missing. But, like you said you will see again and the reunion will be awesome...xoxox load of love to you and your Family.
    Bernie Bee

  5. Thank you for sharing your heart so beautifully once again. The first post under yours says it all. We had a 21 airsoft gun salute for him yesterday, Dale's idea. We prayed for all of you and thanked God for the friend and inspiration Elijah was to us. Continuing to pray for your aching hearts.