Life Is Not Meant to be a Paradise, All We Can Do Is Endure

I was driving back to my house today from the shop when I passed a souped up Mustang, I looked to the driver and made eye contact. With surp...

I was driving back to my house today from the shop when I passed a souped up Mustang, I looked to the driver and made eye contact. With surprising excitement, I immediately hit the brakes. It was him. Then, just as quick as the excitement rushed through my system the dismay followed behind as the memory of him lying so peacefully on that table, under a blue blanket filled my head. Such a cruel, cruel thing the mind and eyes can do to a broken heart.



I have been waiting for the right time to write on this subject once again...turns out, every time I begin my heart crumbles into a million pieces and I realize, there will never be a right time but the message is strong and I just have to share it with others so that they may find comfort or be helped.

This post is for anyone going through the hardships of a heartbreak, death in the family, addiction, abuse, or something as simple as a stubbed toe. When life gets a little tough or even downright unbearable, we must remember that it was not meant to be paradise, therefore we must endure.

This message was delivered to me a few Sundays ago at church and it really spoke to me. To give you a little update on what I have been going through, as my brother's tragedy weighs even heavier than the day I first heard the news in my heart, may help you to understand, connect, or even be able to apply the message in your own life.

My sweet brother trying to talk mom into getting something...she snapped a picture. 1 week before he passed away.
We were all sitting at the dinner table together.

*Warning* This may be a little depressing but it is serious stuff. Please be prepared for what you are about to read.


Before the Tragedy

I used to think life was just perfect. I was so consumed in achieving success, having the perfect husband, home, children, attending all of the big social events, trying to build my business into a massive corporation...I used to grab life by the horns without a worry about any negativity. Besides, anything negative in my life, I had control of. If something broke, I fixed it. If something went wrong, I mended it. If a relationship ended, I would be sad but would quickly stop feeling sorry for myself, give my self a pep-talk, and bounce back onto my feet grounded more than ever. I feared nothing...except the end of what I deemed paradise. The end of my life.

Us - The 3 Muskateers, Partners in crime - Living it up the month before he passed.
My Sister, My brother, and I

Just a glimpse of Jamie's love and goofiness. 
Jamie and my sister on the left. Jamie and his niece Khloe on the right

My sweet brother was much the same. Lived life without a care in the world...and to the fullest. All that knew him would agree 100%. 

On December 14th I was jolted into reality. There was one thing I had never pondered. There was one thing that me, "superwoman", could not fix or make better.
I read recently that once you experience death in a close proximity, it never creeps up on you again, because it NEVER leaves your door step. You are awakened by what always lives one step in front of you.

My New View of the World

The minute I heard the news, I was distraught, I screamed, I became calm for a minute and tried to process, I denied my ears, I processed again, I looked at Jack wide eyed laying in front of me, the tears came, I screamed again, I looked up at Ben wide eyed with tears standing next to the bed, I asked "He is...DEAD? He DIED?", Ben shook his head, I dropped mine, I could hear my heart in my chest, I screamed again, I jumped up, grabbed my phone, I called the police station asking if they were for sure, they gave me the coroner's number, I spoke to him to ask who passed away, I had hope, I cried some more, I begged God, I got in the car and headed over to my parents.... the minutes after I heard the news are still so vivid.

My momma and daddy at Jamie's resting place this Easter.

Even the next day, when they allowed us to go to the funeral home to see him, I just knew we would go in and it wouldn't be my little brother laying there. We all went in as a family. I didn't get one foot in the door when I looked to the right and saw a person laying under a blue blanket on a metal table. I froze and slowly rose to my tippy toes...I WOULD see my sweet brothers face at the other end. It was him...but in the coming months, I would still have hope. Not only did I deny my ears... but I denied my own eyes. I prayed that this was all some horrible joke...that if he came back...even months later...I would't ask him why he did it. I would just hug him and resume the awesome, carefree world that I called life. A few Sundays ago, I had to face the brutal realization...that the life I once knew, was a lie...it is not paradise, nowhere close, but it is a gift. One that only God can give and take away.

A A little fuzzy, but our last Christmas as a "whole" family. Jamie was such a momma's boy. So sweet.

It is with great sadness that I had to loose my brother to see what life truly is, to find meaning, and to welcome death when it is my turn, for after this life is truly paradise. I view time as a gift and want to spend it the way the Lord intended, helping others and making a difference through him.

Summer 2014, Daddy and Jamie at work. Dad was teaching Jamie the family business so that he could take it over soon.
They were not only son, and dad, but close buddies.

All We Can Do Is Endure

Everything I do has different meaning than it did in my "past" life (the life before Jamie left). The person I was, the things that had meaning, the things that didn't, the time that I took for granted, the empathy that I lacked in understanding others, the meaning of love, everything...everything has been touched by my brother's passing. I will never be the same person. The old me died and was buried the day we laid Jamie to rest. There will be joy and happiness in my life, but there will always be a scar on my soul that not only keeps me from being fully happy, but keeps me from the naiveness that was me and that is OK. We should understand the hardships in this world and that should make us sad but should also make us want to change, help, and become better for all of the right reasons. In order to to understand, we cannot deny our ears or our eyes, but we must open our heart, whether it is to let in the happiness, the joys, the sorrow, the hurt, we must let it all in, allow it to shape us and most of all, we must feel...WE MUST ENDURE.

My 3 favorite people. My Brother and sister.

Many people in this world have gone through all types of tragedies, whether it be from death, abuse, rape, broken relationships, broken bones, addiction, sickness, you name it, and they are all different...but the one thing that each has in common is the remedy for seeing better days. Enduring. God not only gave us feelings for the happy times, but he gave us the ability to cry and to feel anxiety and stress. It is what we do with this ability that will shape our future. We can choose to shut it out but cry deep down inside, or we can wear it and endure it. We can choose to make meaning. There is always a light...God never leaves us, even if we beg him to, we are his children. Unconditional love.  I have learned to search for the light within any tragedy, pull it into my soul, open my heart, and endure. 


This post is dedicated to a soul that was so bright, and exuberant, it was blinding. 
To heaven and back little brother. 



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