The past few weeks have been busy and tis the season for head colds as the weather continues to change but one thing never changes and that is how much I miss my precious grandson Joey.
I want so badly to stop the clocks, the angel-versary approaches. I think one of the hardest parts for all of us is that we are still waiting for trial and that looms over every thought of Joey - because Justice has not been served -- yet.
On March 12, 2013 Joey was flown to Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center where he was later that day transferred to Saint Luke's Medical Center. On the morning on March 13, 2013 the doctor's completed the final "brain death test" and pronounced Joseph Wayne Graham III dead due to abusive head injury.
I sat here for several minutes just staring at the screen after typing that last sentence. It still numbs me.
I spent a lot of time this evening looking through pictures of Joey. His mommy took so many and for that we are all so very thankful, because those and 22 months worth of memories are all we have left.
We held a Celebration of Life for Joey shortly after his passing and the family members each released a blue balloon for Joey that day. On March 12, 2014 I'll be lighting a candle and placing it in the window for Joey and on March 13, 2014 I'll let go a blue balloon for him.
I don't know what the future will bring, I don't even know what tomorrow will bring. I used to look forward to things that were to come days, weeks or months down the road. Now it's one day, one step, one breath at a time.
Hug your children, play with them, cherish them and take lots of pictures.
Eleven months ago yesterday my kitchen was torn apart, cleaning behind the stove, scrubbing walls and cabinets when I realized it was time to pick Aiden up from school. Dressed in sweats and a baggy shirt, no socks and wearing a pair of worn down moccasins on my feet I left the house and picked up my son. We went and got our hair cut and then planned to go have some pizza for dinner - as we surely were not going to be cooking in the kitchen that night. Our house was packed except for the few things we needed for the next 10 days. I silenced my phone while we were getting our hair cut because the last time we were there it kept ringing. When we got out to the car I saw three missed calls from Erin, one right after the other. My face lit up and I thought to myself -- "We're having a baby! I will get to meet him before I leave for Texas!"
I called her back and instead of happy news all I had was a screaming, out of control daughter on the other end of the line - something had happened to Joey. Our lives forever changed in that one split second.
I called Crystal, told her what I knew, I called Stan and told him what I knew. I called Kevin and asked him to come to the hospital as soon as he could to take Aiden. And then I called Michele, my former boss and one of my best friends. I needed her to pray for Joey, I needed her to pray for all of us. When I told her what I knew, that he was being flighted but I didn't know where she gasped, they had just taken the call that Air St. Luke's was going to Mountain Home for a 22 month old child. It was our Joey. She called Jeremy out in dispatch and had him try to find out where they were transporting to. A little while later Jeremy called me and told me they were heading to St. Al's and their ETA. I was going to get there about the same time as the helicopter. Erin was still in Mountain Home.
I came into the ER and they took Aiden and I to the "Quiet Room" and said someone would be in to talk to me soon. Michele showed up and sat with us. I don't know that I could have stood it in there by myself with my child and am forever thankful she got there when she did. The nurse came in and spoke with us briefly, mainly wanting to know where Joey's mom was. They were on their way is all I could tell her.
When Erin and Ryan arrived all I could do was hold her. The nurse came in and told Ryan he would have to step outside, Erin didn't grasp it at first, I don't know when it connected with her why they wanted him to step out but I knew, right then and there, I knew - he had done this to our baby boy. Michele took Aiden out of the room and shut the door. Just before the doctor's walked in my son Stan showed up and came in the room with us. This was the first we were going to hear about what happened to our precious baby boy. Erin was numb, in shock, Stan was a rock holding us both up and I screamed and screamed and cursed Ryan.
And then we went back to see Joey, precious, sweet baby Joey. Stan went to the waiting room to be with Aiden and Michele while Erin and I went back to see her son. As I rounded the corner I saw someone I had not seen in a few years, a former co-worker and friend. He grabbed me, with tears streaming down his face and just held me and we cried.
When it was time to leave Saint Al's and head to Saint Luke's Kevin was there, I kissed my little boy and then walked to my car. I got on the road to follow the ambulance that was transporting my grandson and daughter with some "dumb ass military guy" following me. The same dumb ass that I promise to have a beer with before he moves to his new assignment, the same dumb ass that I prayed for his safe return to his wife and children when he was deployed this past eight months. But another vehicle slid in between me and the ambulance, the Police Crime Scene Investigation truck. I wondered why on earth is he going to the hospital? Why aren't they arresting that son of a bitch? That officer stayed beside Joey's room for hours. He was gentle and kind and I wish I knew his name because I would like to thank him for how he treated our Joey when he had to photograph his injuries, how he treated my daughter when he had to ask her about bruises and such on Joey - if they were new or old. A big man with such tenderness and compassion.
Phone calls took place on the drive over, to Crystal, to Lawrence and to Joey's other grandma - Kim. Of all the phone calls that day and the days to follow that call to Kim was the hardest and I wish to this day I had handled it better. To hear her screams, to hear her pain, it ripped me apart. She loved that little boy as much as me and I just stabbed a knife in her heart.
So that was just a peek into the first few hours of our changed lives. Eleven months have come and gone. We have an almost 11 month old baby boy named Gus, who came into this world ten days after his big brother passed away. He came in a hurry and hasn't slowed down since and I am so thankful he is with us.
We have had laughs, we have had good days, we have had tears and pain, we have had bad days and we have had horrible days, but we're here - every day....living....loving....crying....smiling....hugging....fighting....and waiting. Waiting for justice. Waiting to finally be able to grieve without the trial looming over us.
Eleven months ago today the doctor's pronounced my grandson, Joseph Wayne Graham III, deceased. Eleven months ago my grandson made some other children's lives better as they received some of his organs. Eleven months ago tonight we said our final goodbyes to one of the sweetest little boys to have blessed this old grandma with his love.
Rest in Peace Joey - Grandma loves you.
Hug your children, play with them, love them and be there for them.
Yesterday as my sister and I drove to Mountain Home we talked of many things and shared some laughs of funny things that have happened along the way during the many courtroom appearances and such. We spoke of our Mom and Dad, we shared our tension of what the day would bring and we enjoyed some time of just being together as that does not happen much (there is usually a 6 year old and her husband with us).
As the judge and lawyers began to speak the queasiness returned. After all was said and done the new trial date is August 19, 2014. Once we have a guilty verdict it will take another 6 weeks (approximately) to have a Sentencing Hearing....so looking at the calendar it seems we'll be lucky if the murderer is locked away in prison by mid October.
Yesterday I spoke about my anger and my thankfulness. Today the anger is trying be in control and I'm trying to not let it consume me.
You see, I have a six year old child named Aiden. Aiden came to live with me when he was six months old and after a three year battle he legally became my son. Aiden is Autistic, he also is on the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum (FAS). He suffers Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD) and Severe Anxiety Disorder (SAD). And he is the light of my life and the most amazing kid. His sense of humor is great and his imagination is out of this world. Because of Joey's death many issues surfaced. He cannot attend school because of his anxiety, going out of town or to a new place with people he doesn't know is very difficult for him and having to stay with anyone - including those he loves - while I am tending to other matters is extremely stressful for him.
Last night as I lay down with him he began to tell me of a bad "dream" he had. His "dreams" many times are his fears inside him that if he says it is a "dream" it is easier to express. His body shaking uncontrollably, tears streaming down his face and his voice cracking he is able to tell me - he fears that I won't come back, that I will disappear, that I will go to Heaven, like Joey did. He is so afraid to go to sleep (before medications the child would stay awake every night until he passed out from sheer exhaustion -- typically around 3:30 in the morning!) - afraid that when he wakes up I will no longer be there.
For months I have had to tell him where I am in the house if I needed to change my location or go outside. I would have to make sure he heard me and many times repeat it back so that he was sure of where I would be and how long I would be gone. Yes that meant every time I go to the bathroom, go to the kitchen, or anything else. It also meant that every time he needed to use the bathroom that I would have to stand outside the door - because you see, if the door is closed he can't see me and if he can't see me then I may not be there when he comes out. There are many other things like this that are a part of our daily life now.
An amazing therapist and awesome pediatrician are helping to ease these things in Aiden's life but he is forever changed ....because of the murder of my grandson Joey. We all are.
I read so many comments in social media about the trial being pushed back and that it isn't right, that they shouldn't be able to do this or that, that he just needs to face his charges, that they shouldn't keep prolonging this and on and on. The truth is that while we hate the delays, the news of the new trial date was hard to take, they do have that right. The POS murderer is entitled to adequate representation and if he felt (or his parents) that the public defender was not adequate they (he and his parents) have every right to hire an attorney...and they did. That attorney has to be afforded adequate time to get up to speed with the case (he's 10+ months behind us all) and build his case for his client. Do we like it - hell no! Do we understand it - yes we do. The biggest part is that we want to make sure that everything is done correctly - no room for a mistrial, no technicalities and no appeals for whatever reason (biggest one being inadequate representation). So they have hired an attorney - and we got a delay.
It is still hard to swallow this morning but now we just keep marching on - there is still a light at the end of this tunnel - it's just a little further down the track than we had hoped. And we know, as much as we hate to think of it, that there are still chances for more delays. I pray that doesn't happen, but if it does, we will accept it and carry on. We always keep in the forefront of our minds and hearts that this is about justice....JUSTICE for JOEY....and we will never stop until we have it.
I long for the day that I can stand before the court and give my victim impact statement and tell the Judge and the POS muderer and the POS murderer's parents how what he did affected and impacted so many people and in so many ways.
This afternoon we will head back to Mountain Home for another court session. Last month the parents of the murderer hired an attorney for him. So of course there is a new delay but we won't know how long that delay will be until today. And of course there is always the chance of more delays later on. I have often wondered why murder trials can take upwards of a few years, now we know firsthand why.
I have been patiently waiting, that was until this past two weeks - now I am just angry.
Angry that Joey was taken from us.
Angry that the murderer is still not taking accountability.
Angry that he doesn't even seem human and shows no remorse for what he did.
Angry that my daughter has to go through the rest of her life without her precious son.
Angry that Gus will never know his brother, only stories and pictures.
Angry that my family has been torn apart as a result of the stress and sometimes lack of understanding.'
Angry that the mother of that piece of scum sits in the courtroom acting all smug and like this is a freaking game.
Angry that my daughter has to deal with people that do and say incredibly hurtful things.
Angry that my youngest child is suffering from PTSD because of what that scum did to our Joey and fears that someone will hurt him or others that he loves. (A five year old child (at the time) should not be able to comprehend this - I tell him that I will protect him and I will never let someone hurt him like Ryan hurt Joey and his response was "Erin protected Joey but Ryan still killed him")
Angry that he understands this.
Angry that we have to remain pretty quiet about everything so as not to jeopardize the case when all I want to do is shout to the world what this man did, the brutal way our Joey died.
Angry that the piece of scum still breathes air and this his delusional mother whines about his being in jail and all the crap she has to say regarding any and all of this situation. (Hey lady, at least your child is still breathing!)
Angry at so many other things. Most days it is a struggle to stay positive, to not bite the head off of anyone that says anything about this case or how we should or should not act.
But there are positives as well, and every day I try to remind myself of those positives, especially when the anger is boiling so fast and furious.
Thankful for my daughter Erin and her strength ( she takes after her momma)
Thankful for Aiden and all of my grandchildren - that they are the shining lights in my life
Thankful for my son Stan and my daughter-in-law Kasandra - two of the most grounded people I know and the get away from it all they give me at times
Thankful for my step-son Lawrence and my daughter-in-law Jaime - for their support and for their craziness that gives me laughter from time to time
Thankful for my daughter Crystal and son-in-law Richie - although we are far apart in many ways right now they are so close to my heart and knowing the relationship once shared can be once again
Thankful for my sister Brenda and brother-in-law Troy - I could never imagine going through everything without my sister, she is my shoulder to lean on, and without them Aiden and I would be homeless at this point in time.
Thankful for so many incredible friends - Michele and John C., Clairisa, Jennifer B, Janet and Richard G., Tim and Kim B., Kim N., Cindy and Richard W., Jill Z., Beth L., Kristi W., Shanna and Rex D., and so many others - without you all I think I would have fallen over the edge several months ago
Thankful for Lisa CC and June P - the friendships that have developed over the past several months is amazing and when the three of us do not get to chat for a given day I am lost
Thankful for my crafts and shows because besides bringing me in some money to help support Aiden and I they keep me sane!
Thankful for Tina - the Elmore County Prosecutor - an incredible woman who has such amazing compassion in her heart and fights hard for truth. She is the force in the fight to make sure Justice happens for Joey, for my family.
Thankful for Penny and Nicole - Tina's assistants - for answering all of our questions, listening to our anger, being there beside us in every courtroom appearance and resting that hand on our shoulders when things get a little tense - reminding us they are right there.
Thankful for the memories of Joey - of the pictures and videos, of the stories we all share, but most importantly for being the little man that he was - he brought smiles and laughter to everyone he crossed paths with - he was such a beautiful soul.
Thankful for my parents - although no longer living the things they taught me, the strength they gave me, and the thoughts of "If Dad/Mom were here...." statements I often make
Thankful for the Lord - without Him the anger would control me, instead it just slips in front once in a while and I ask Him for help.
Hug your children, get down on the floor and play with them and always take time to hug - ask anyone that knows me personally - HUGS are important!
Over the past ten months I have learned a great deal about our Justice System and I have been in the courtroom at Elmore County Courthouse numerous times, watching other cases being discussed, watched prosecutors and defense lawyers do their jobs. We've been summoned back to court because of a new move by the defense side of the case. "New" evidence (wrong), new lawyers (great another delay) and wonder what will be next. But something has been eating at me for a while now.
On multiple occasions I have heard and seen people discuss Jury Duty and the oh so many ways to get out of it or thankful they didn't get selected for a certain trial. For years I have wanted to serve on a jury - I find the process fascinating and it intrigues me. Would I necessarily want to be on a murder trial, probably not but I would not lie during the selection process to purposely get out of it. I never got selected for the few trials that I was questioned for - because of where I worked or because I knew the officers involved personally.
Now our Judicial System may not be perfect but it is what we have - to be judged by a panel of our peers. It's our duty as a citizen of this country to serve this system. It's also our duty as human beings to ensure a fair and impartial judgement is given. So I wonder - if people are purposefully finding ways to not get selected for a jury are there others that are doing the opposite? Why do so many people not want to serve? Because it interferes with their life? Because they just don't want to? Because deciding the fate of another human being is too much to live with?
There are two sides to every criminal case - the person on trial and the victims of the situation that brought this whole thing together. How about rethinking Jury Duty for a moment.
A hit and run motor vehicle crash - vehicle A failed to stop for a stop sign and turned out onto the other road right in front of another vehicle. Vehicle B cannot stop in time and crashes into the back/side of Vehicle A. The driver of Vehicle A has been drinking, his license is suspended and he takes off. The front seat passenger in Vehicle B is hurt in the crash, nothing serious but requires medical attention and there is significant damage to the front end of Vehicle B. EMS and law enforcement arrive, law enforcement gets a great description and a partial plate of Vehicle A from the driver and passenger of Vehicle B. They soon locate Vehicle B and it's owner a few miles away in the driveway of his residence. The hood is still warm, the owner is sitting on the front steps of his home smoking a cigarette, there is damage to the back/side of Vehicle A that is in line with the damage on Vehicle B.
This is the basics of the case set before you during Jury selection. Would you do everything you can to get out of being selected? Or would you be OK with being on that Jury? Could you decide (after hearing all the evidence from both sides) whether the man that owns Vehicle A is responsible for this crash, for the damage done to Vehicle B, for the injuries to the passenger in Vehicle B?
Now, how long ago do you think this crash happened? A month? Six months? A year? You may be surprised to learn how long it takes to even get to the point of jury selection. But now, after countless court appearances, continuances, investigations, etc, it's finally time to select a jury. Maybe this is a one or two day trial. That's not too much to ask of a citizen of that county to give up to decide if this man is guilty or not right? Can you live with your decision? Well I would think you could if you listened objectively, were not biased and are not allowed to be swayed by others of your own decision based on facts.
Now let's take a look at another case. It's March 12, 2013 - A 22 month old child is home alone with his step-father. As his mother is driving home from Boise she is told by her husband that the child fell and they are going to the hospital. EMS is called to the home and the child is flown to St. Al's, he is hurt badly and is unresponsive. At the hospital the doctor's say he is brain dead. He is transported to St. Luke's and over the next two days his family goes through pure hell. The injuries are not accidental the doctors say. And the step-father is taken in for questioning while the child's mother and grandmother are escorted back to see his battered body laying on a hospital bed. When questioned at the scene and at the sheriff's office the step-father's story changes numerous times. On the morning of March 13, 2013 the child is officially declared dead.
Fast forward to August 16, 2013. The autopsy report is completed, lab results are in, a death certificate has been issued, numerous meetings with law enforcement, prosecutor's office, court hearings for motions for one thing or another, the preliminary hearing is finally here. This is a two day hearing where the prosecutor and the defense will state their cases before the county judge to show the defendant should (or should not) be bound over to district court for 1st Degree Murder. Law enforcement officers, the coroner and a child abuse expert are called to testify. After listening to graphic details of the injuries the child sustained the judge rules there is enough evidence to bind the defendant over for trial.
Fast forward to today, January 21, 2014. The original trial date was scheduled for January 7, 2014 but due to "new" evidence that needed to be tested a continuance was given. New trial date - March 31, 2014. But on January 10, 2014 the defendant now has a new attorney so the trial must be pushed back yet again - because the new attorney needs time to catch up on the case and prepare. Now court dates are in limbo waiting to see how much time the new attorney thinks he will need.
But there's a lot taking place during all this time. Between September and January, and still continuing, decisions about jury selections have been made. The judge, prosecutor and defense attorney have worked together to create a jury questionnaire - that was still incomplete and now has to have a new attorney review it and begin working together once again to finalize it.
The trial will last five weeks - the first week is jury selection, the remaining four weeks will be the trial. Then the jury will need to deliberate and come to a decision on guilt or innocence.
You receive a letter from the Jury Commissioner - you are to report for a Jury Questionnaire. The process is expected to last four hours. You arrive and you begin the questionnaire. Will you write your answers so that one side or the other (or maybe both) will most definitely not want you on the jury or will you answer honestly? You know by the instructions given this a murder trial, a trial expected to last five weeks. What will you do?
And what if so many people think the same way - answer "correctly" so they don't get picked? Then the trial gets delayed again. A change of venue happens and another six months passes before the selection process can start again. Now both the victim's mother, infant brother and the rest of his family, along with the defendant's family, witnesses, prosecutor, defense attorney, etc have to pack up and go to another part of the state for a trial.
Yes you as a juror will decide the guilt or innocence of a man accused of murdering a 22 month old child. Can you live with it? Can you be upstanding and listen to the evidence and make an educated decision based on the facts given to you?
I'd rather be in your shoes Mr. or Miss Juror than in mine.
What's it like in Heaven?
Is the air so sweet and clean?
Are you singing?
Are you laughing?
Is Elmo there with you?
What's it like in Heaven?
Is the Christmas Story told
By people that were there?
Are you watching?
Are you helping others?
Little ones like you?
What's it like in Heaven?
Can you see us down here?
Do you see your mommy?
Do you see your little brother?
They are missing you.
Love Grandma Kathy
My daughter Erin -- Joey's mommy -- wrote this today regarding how quickly our lives can change and how we need to make sure to never take for granted our loved ones. I am so blessed to call her my daughter and so proud of her and her strength --
these words are so very true...
a lot of people take their loved ones for granted, not enjoying the moments that they have with them like they should, leaving angrily without saying goodbye or I love you, the list goes on and on.
I never once have taken my children for granted, tho. and unfortunately, I know more than a few people who do, and that breaks my heart.
9 months ago I left my Joey at home with my husband whom I trusted with my life, my children, and my children's lives. I said goodbye to him and told him that I loved him and would be back later, just like any other time I left. little did me or Joey know, that would be the last time we got that opportunity with each other. I never missed the opportunity to hug and kiss him goodbye, or just for no reason at all, i told him I loved him every single day, at least 15 times a day, and i seized and enjoyed every moment and every day that I had with him. not for any specific reason other than he's my son and I knew how truly blessed I was to call him mine and have him in my life every day.
too many people take these every day moments for granted, and refuse to open their eyes and realize that your child, your loved ones, your whole life, can be taken and shattered right in front of you in the blink of an eye.
I'm glad I never took anything for granted when it came to my baby boy, becuz thanks to that, I have tons of memories of him that I am so incredibly thankful for. I miss you every day baby boy, it hurts more and more as the time goes by, but i know I'll get to see you, hold you and kiss you again one day.
until then, rest in peace my sweet angel. mommy loves you.
So with that I will end this post with my usual thing -- love your children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, play with them, cherish them and be thankful for them.
I knew the holidays were going to be tough this year without our Joey here with us but I didn't realize how powerful I would feel it as soon as I woke up today. Dreams of Joey last night were pleasant ones which I am so very thankful for. Looking at my sleeping son and peeking in at my sleeping grandson brings a smile to my face and tears to my eyes because there is another little boy that I should be peeking in on but he's not here.
I am usually not at a loss for words but today I am struggling, my heart is heavy and my eyes are leaking. There are so many reasons to be thankful and feel blessed - wonderful children and grandchildren, amazing family and friends that I don't know how I could get through a day without them....but for right now, at this moment, all I can be is sad.
My grandson Joey is not here. He's not running through the house making lots of noise, he's not sitting on the floor playing with toys. Instead he's in Heaven where I know that pain, sadness and all those other earthly things we feel will never touch him again but for me those things are a part of daily life.
As you gather with family and friends today be thankful for everyone that you are looking at around your table. Enjoy the kids most of all. They are the most amazing blessings we are given. Hug and kiss them, play with them and capture the moments in pictures.
There's a special spot at the table this year. One for a little boy that is missing from our family. Missing you more every day Joey.
Today has lots of meaning in my heart. Three years ago today Aiden legally became my son. One month shy of a three year battle, endless meetings with Child Services, court hearings not to mention the heartaches and ended relationships. We battled through it all and I stood firm and spoke up for him when no one else would. The past three years have been tiring, emotional and filled with love. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. Aiden brought new meaning to my life and while many said he was lucky to have me, I am truly the lucky one. Lucky to have him. And I will continue to stand up for him, speak up for him and stand firm for him through all the battles he has to go through in his life.
Eight months ago today I received a panicked call from my daughter Erin, my grandson Joey was being flown to Boise, he was unconscious, unresponsive and we really didn't know what had happened. About this time that day we got the news, Joey was not with us anymore, while his heart was still beating and the life support was keeping him breathing he was already gone. I lost my grandson that day and I lost a part of my daughter as well as she will never be who she was before that moment.
Now I am standing firm once again for a little boy, for our Joey. I'm standing beside my daughter every step of the way, no matter what happens, no matter what anyone says, no matter what anyone does...I cannot say I know what she is going through but I do know what I am going through and can only imagine what this is like for her. Together we go to the hearings, together we meet with the prosecutor and her staff, we battle with the military and we lean on one another. I miss my grandson, I love him so much. For now we will finish this fight and make sure justice is served to the coward that took him from us.
We have a long road ahead of us and we will continue fighting for justice each step of the way. Rest in Peace my sweet, sweet Joey and know that your Mommy, brother, Grandma Kathy, Grandma Kim, Grandpa Alden, brother, aunts, uncles and cousins all love you so very much.
Wow, it's been a while since I have posted on here. Should I say that there are forces preventing me from doing that? (some will understand that question, others may not but regardless I couldn't help myself).
So much has happened since my last post. The monster was bound over to district court and later arraigned in district court. He entered a plea of Not Guilty and the judge set dates for several hearings, status meetings, pre-trial conference and the trial. The Prosecutor's Assistant told us not set our sights too heavily on that trial date though as it would probably change. And it did. The original date was January 7, 2014. Last week that was changed to March 31st. Hopefully that will be the only delay but we know this is a game of chess and that other moves could cause more delays.
We are learning so much about the justice system in criminal cases and are so thankful for the Prosecutor and the Assistant that has been assigned to our case. They are always there to listen, to answer our questions or just listen to us vent.
As I said in the beginning of this blog, I can't go into a lot of details of the case but I like to at least update on what I can.
Erin and I are both so thankful for the friends and supporters that our family has during all of this. Some people want to be in our lives so they can feel important, feel like they are "part" of this ordeal...it blows my mind how some people can be like that ... this is not something I would ever want to be a part of, I guess they are just looking to feel important. The real friends, the ones that have been there before and are still hear to listen to us cry, to listen to our pain, to laugh with us when we laugh and that know, regardless what we are going through that we still want to know about them, to share in their joys and their pains. Without these people I don't know how I could get through every day.
To my family (my kids, my daughters-in-law, my sister and brother-in-law, my cousins) - Thank You for being who you are, for talking, for helping, for listening, for hugging, for being you. For my daughter-in-law's parents - Kim and Tim - Thank You for your love and support, for feeding us and giving us a place of refuge during long court days. For Joey's Grandma Kim and Aunt Jordan - Thank You for being there - even though you're both many miles away you are always by my side. To some very incredible friends - Michele, Janet, Jill, Lisa CC and June- I truly could not get through every day without you all.
I sit here today thinking about the upcoming status hearing on Monday and some potential outcomes of that hearing. I think about how much our lives have changed and how much more we have to endure.
Recently Erin had posted something about a friend that was feeling pretty crappy about their life and I wrote the following comment to it. I think it is worth sharing here as well.
To whom it may concern...hating your life only brings you and others around you down into the depths of depression...life is what it is and you have to take the steps to make it better. I could tell you countless tales of things that have happened in my life but that's my life not yours. What I can tell you are these few things:
1) a great man (my father) told me many years ago...If you can't laugh through whatever comes in your life you will never survive..we can find something to laugh about every day if we just take the time to do it.
2) you and only you can change things in your life..happiness is not found "in" someone else..happiness is "WITHIN" yourself. 3) make a list..what's good and what's "bad" about my life...I bet the good out weighs the bad. Make a list of steps to take to change the bad into good. Some changes simply start with attitude, others will take a while...that's where goals come in. Set realistic goals...today..tomorrow...in a week..in a moth...in a year...and check them off as you meet them. Sometimes goals or steps change but that's OK because we change and life changes.
4) drop the baggage from the past, it only slows you down.
5) love yourself. 6)do one thing everyday to make another person smile...it's not hard...hold a door for someone, say "Have a great day!" to a cashier and mean it, simple things bring smiles...giving smiles to others makes you feel better inside. So...Have a GREAT DAY my dear people...Love, Mom
We made it through another month, we have a long way to go, but in the end Justice will win and we can share "the rest of the story".
Love one another, cherish every day with your little ones. Hug one another. Hugs are the most incredible thing in the world. To feel the comfort of a friend or loved one's arms giving that little (or sometimes big) squeeze touches deep into one's soul and reminds the person, no matter what, they are loved.
Onward and forward...we wait for Monday and what next week will bring...but in the meantime I'll go play with my son and grandson and smile at the wonder of them both.