Carrying Her Heart

I am dedicating this site to my beloved daughter Rachel whose earthly life ended on Sept. 17,2009.This is just a glimpse of the path I walk through this journey of grief.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

The New Year


When I graduated in 1984,my church presented me with a book title"Your Next Big Step".The last chapter of the book was this prayer for the new year.I can't tell you how many times I have read it.Its one of those things that stay in my mind and hidden my heart.I am so thankful that I grew up in a home where I heard my father prayer,and watched my mother sing hymns ,and be amazed that she rarely used a hymnal.My faith is what has carried me through these last months of this year.

MY PRAYER FOR THE NEW YEAR

Another year has slipped beyond my grasp.For every wasted
moment,hour,and day, I pray for forgiveness. I cannot live them over
again.They are gone.But as I face this new year Father,I ask that
power be given to use each present moment just for thee-to live,not
waiting for some dazzling hour to serve while other watch,but ever
faithful to those moments known to thee alone ,dear Lord,and me.
Make me humble,Lord.This stubborn will of mine persist.Teach me to
live"thy will be done",in both the unseen and the known.Make me
big in little things.Make me like the Man of Galilee I pray.
Faith in thee,far greater than I now posses,is my desire.Make my
faith strong,that in humility I might live like thee and that through
me,you can quiet the storms ,remove the mountains and change the
hateful souls of mankind.
The pure light of thy love is what this dark world needs.Well do I
know thou hast revealed thy love at an awful cost.One look at
Calvary is enough for me.Nor have I done my best to shed that light
abroad.Help me to love in such a sacrificial ,selfless way,that even
though no one else would live your love,its purifying power could be
made known through me.And what I ask for me,I plead for every
child, that they all might come to know your love and live
victoriously.
In Jesus precious name I pray,
AMEN

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Real Me


My sister and her twin boys came and stayed a couple of days with us.The weather was bad but the visit was good.Our kids play together so well,and for a long time.Lots of tolerance for the age differences.She took this picture of me while we were in a restaurant waiting for our food.When I saw it,I realized that she had captured how I really feel.When I say Rachel is in my every thought,it is not a gross exaggeration.I can be talking with someone and in my mind I am relating this person ,or something about this person ,to Rach.I remember exactly what I was thinking when my sister was taking this picture:Rachel would be freaking out about that new camera.She would be wanting to sell everything she had to try to get one.Man Rach would have loved that camera......its all day.Its exhausting.Some times there is a small window of peace,where my mind is quiet.Then the guilt comes because me heart tells my brain ,you forgot about her.It is so hard to try to find the right way to feel in what is now my new reality.A lot of well meaning people have an opinion on grief. How you should feel,how long you will feel it, and what you should do about feeling it.I'm glad I have this place to go to while they are talking.Grief is as different for every person as labor is for every woman.What helps one will not help the other.You have to trust God, yourself and trust your body .Trust that it is doing what it naturally is supposed to do to help you get through it.I am very aware of my pain,and the ability and inability to mask it.Like I've always said.There is no right or wrong way for me to feel right now.Its just important that I feel.The holidays have been draining and it shows on every part of my face.But make no mistake,my faith is not shaken.The words to this Natalie Grant song say it better than I can.....

Foolish heart looks like we're here again
Same old game of plastic smile
Don't let anybody in
Hiding my heartache, will this glass house break
How much will they take before I'm empty
Do I let it show, does anybody know?

[Chorus:]
But you see the real me
Hiding in my skin, broken from within
Unveil me completely
I'm loosening my grasp
There's no need to mask my frailty
Cause you see the real me
Painted on, life is behind a mask
Self-inflicted circus clown
I'm tired of the song and dance
Living a charade, always on parade
What a mess I've made of my existence
But you love me even now
And still I see somehow
But you see the real me
Hiding in my skin, broken from within
Unveil me completely
I'm loosening my grasp
There's no need to mask my frailty
Cause you see the real me
Wonderful, beautiful is what you see
When you look at me
You're turning the tattered fabric of my life into
A perfect tapestry
I just wanna be me
But you see the real me
Hiding in my skin, broken from within
Unveil me completely
I'm loosening my grasp
There's no need to mask my frailty
Cause you see the real me
And you love me just as I am
Wonderful, beautiful is what you see
When you look at me

Sunday, December 27, 2009

OK

Well Christmas has come and gone.I was given many "gifts" this Christmas,but not all of them were wrapped, or in a gift bag.I am so glad that God allowed me to have some joy this season.But all too quickly I am reminded of the pain that we all are trying to live with.Tonight when we were helping KK get ready to go to sleep(she likes for both Kenny and I to lay down with her),she said her throat hurt.I asked her if she needed a drink and she she shook her head no and began to cry.She looked at me with such fear in her eyes and said "I don't wanna die".She stared at me waiting for me to say the words that in my heart I knew I could not say.Words filled my head.Do I lie and tell her "your not gonna die".Is that always in her thoughts?Theres not a chapter on this in any of the books I've been given.I looked at her ,I looked at the pain on my husbands face.I did what every mothers first instinct is, I hugged her.I hugged her hoping to transfer her pain into my body.I hugged her hoping to reassure her of something that we have absolutely no control over.All I could say was "its ok","its gonna be ok",because thats my standard answer now for every question,I am ok.Christmas was ok.The girls are ok.Ok seems to be as good as it gets for now.I have decided that ok is ok for now.My pain and my sorrow is manageable.Being ok with not being sad can be as hard as being sad is.Rachel is still in my EVERY thought.Some days things just continually run through my head like a slide show.The days when its all about the wreck or the funeral are the worst.I see her laying in the casket.The whole day plays out in my head over and over. "I don't wanna die" ,not the last words you want to have your child say before she falls asleep.I pray tomorrow brings me wisdom to talk about what I could not say tonight.Maybe her little mind just needed to hear "its ok".

I lift up my eyes to the hills—
where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.psalm 121

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Her first real CHRISTmas


Rachel was born on November 1,1989.This is a photo from Rachels first Christmas.My mother had fixed Rach her very own tree.Now she is having her first Christmas with Jesus.Like the song says

I can only imagine
What my eyes will see
When your face
Is before me .
I can only imagine....

One of my sweet boys from my church read this prayer for us during our childens program at church.It is my prayer for myself and for each of you:

Loving Father,help us remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds,
and the worship of the wisemen.
Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift
and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.
May the Christmas morning make us happy to be your children
and Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven,for Jesus sake.Amen.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Hearts



On the day of visitation for Rachel,my sister and I went to her least favorite store,Walmart,to grab just a few quick things that we needed for the night.We ended up at the jewelry counter trying to find whatever "heart" shaped items we could find.Neither of us had any , and we felt the need put a lot on, quickly.On the day of the wreck ,I had remembered the heart shaped ring Rachel had bought me while she was on a cruise with her aunt to Mexico.(Its the open heart with a flower of diamonds.)There are 7 diamonds in the flower.7 had also begun to have a lot of meaning to me.I was so glad to have my heart ring.My sister bought herself the heart ring that says LOVE.The day of the funeral, Rachels friend Cody brought the same ring for Rachel.He said he promised he would always remember her.I helped him put it in her hand.I decided for Christmas I would get my mom and myself the same ring.At the funeral my sister read the poem,my mom shared all of the "Rachel=isms"that could be shared in public(rach had an opinion on all things),and I ended with a plea for everyone to search their hearts.We carried her heart through that long,hard weekend,and we will carry it for the rest of our lives.
I wear mine on my right hand and it reminds me of this verse- “I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas poem


Back in September when I went to the tax office to get my car tags that were NOT expired,(my first "episode")sweet Ms.Alice gave me this poem and told me to not read it yet,to put it back for Christmas.
What a sweet lady..

I see the countless CHRISTMAS trees around the world below
with tiny lights like HEAVEN’S stars reflecting on the snow.
The sight is so spectacular please wipe away that tear
for I am spending CHRISTMAS with JESUS CHRIST this year.

I hear the many CHRISTMAS SONGS that people hold so dear
but the SOUND OF MUSIC can't compare with the CHRISTMAS CHOIR up here.
I have no words to tell you of the JOY their voices bring
for it is beyond description to hear the angels sing.

I know how much you miss me, I see the pain inside your heart
But I am not so far away.We really aren't apart.
So be happy for me,dear ones.You know I hold you dear,
And be glad I'm spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.

I send you each a special gift from my heavenly home above.
I send you each a memory of my undying love.
After all "love"is the gift more precious than pure gold.
It always was important in the stories Jesus told.

Please love and keep each other,as my Father said to do.
For I can't count the blessings or love He has for you.
So have a Merry Christmas and wipe away that tear,
Remember I'm spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

:(

This week I was visiting with a friend and we were talking about how we felt a connection with each other even though we only saw each other for a few minutes a week at church.Its a different kind of love than what you have for your family.You're supposed to love your family.This kind of love can only come from abiding in Jesus,and Him abiding in us.That is the tie that binds us.It is so special to see those friends look at your kids and see what you see in them.I am blessed to have that feeling with quite a few members of our church.Some of them encouraged me when I was growing up,and now they are there for my kids.Its amazing how these people can impact your life in such a small amount of time.
I lost one of those very dear people on Saturday night.This lady was the piano player at the little church in Gist.She played like you would dream of playing,so amazing.She was happy playing at that little church for just a handful of members for many years.She always was so encouraging to me,and to Rachel.She saw in Rach what I did.My heart goes out to her family.My heart has been very heavy today.At my church we have been practicing for our Christmas program "The Bells of Christmas".The kids are playing the hand bells and saying a few poems.I realized today I hadn't asked anyone to work the sound for me for the program.I usually didn't have to. Rachel always made my cd's, and helped me with my music.Having to say out loud that my helper was not here, was so painful.I couldn't even do my children's sermon this morning.I couldn't even stay in "big church". I had to leave.I am sad.I was sad all day.I am sad for my friends family.I am missing my daughter.My oldest son came by this evening.He was wearing a cap with long braided threads hanging down the sides like ponytails.He looked so much like Rach, I could hardly bare to look at him.He asked me what was the matter , and I told him.I told him how much he looked like her.I told him how much I missed her.I asked him if he ever dreamed about her, or if he ever heard her talk to him, just wanting to know that he still felt close to her.He said "not yet" , and then he put his head down and took a big breath and looked at me and said,"but sometimes when I'm driving my truck I can see her sitting in the seat with me."I was so glad he shared that with me.The two of them were so close when they were growing up(Talk about a connection.)I know he has the same emptiness that I have in my heart.
According to Griefshare going through grief is like going through a tunnel. The bad news is the tunnel is dark. The good news is that once you enter into that tunnel, you are already on your way out.



"How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and every day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me?" (Psalm 13:2)

Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Ineffable moments





When Rach was a senior she had to do an interview at school for a competition.I found a paper where she had wrote out a few things about herself.
"I enjoy reading and capturing ineffable moments of my family and close friends with photography".
Ineffable -incapable of being described in words.
She saw through her camera lens a totally different view of the same things others saw.She chose to use that lens to create beauty in everything she saw ,for herself.
I'm realizing more and more every day that I have that same choice to make.I have to choose the lens with which I view my daily life.The situation hasn't changed,I just need to change the way,change the lens, through which I look at it.I'm so thankful for her gift.She left me hundreds of photos of herself,and our family.On her phone, and in the computer are so many beautiful photos.She had taken some photos of downtown Beaumont last Christmas.I framed them and put them out this year.They are beautiful.If you would like to print them out for yourself, feel free.A gift to you ,from Rach.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Singing of The Birds


One of mine and the girls favorite things to do is watch the birds come and feed.Since KK was very little,about 3,she and Kennedy could tell which birds were outside eating just by listening to them sing.The birds had not been here since Sept. 17.They've only been back for a couple of days.Mainly Big Red and Lady Red.Yes that is their name.They all have a name.I screamed like a little girl when I heard that tweet.I love my birds and every scripture that they represent to me.They also remind me of a poem that I had read several years ago that Robert Schuller had written to his soon to be wife.

When the night is past
And the dawning of the new day
is about to break
With fresh hopes and dreams,
Then you will hear the singing of the birds.

When storm clouds break
To drift away
Leaving bright patches of blue
With golden shafts of sunlight
On flower and leaf,
Sparkling with fresh drops of diamond rain,
Then you will hear the singing of the birds.

Yes,there are those times and places
when the cold winter ends.
Springtime returns.
The dark night of the soul
Is dissolved into a happy daybreak.
The storm is over.
Then you will hear the singing of the birds.


For me the storm is not over, but for today I heard the birds sing.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Rachel Clark Scholarship


When my husband and I first got married we lived out in a little town called Gist.All of his family lives out there.There's a little white wooden church right off the high way.Its been there a long time its called New Cherry Grove Baptist Church.My husband grew up in that church.We went many Sundays.Rachel and I sang there too.When we moved back to Vidor, we went back to the church I grew up in because there were more youth there.Our hearts are with them in Gist every Sunday.Its a small church, but it is so full of love for the Lord.Immediately after Rachels funeral,New Cherry Grove announced plans to start a scholarship in Rachels name.I was so touched.We decided we didn't want it to just be an academic scholarship,we want it to go to the person with the biggest need.The one that has the desire and the dream, but just needs a little help.Don't we all need a little help?If you would like more information about the scholarship or would like to make a donation feel free to email me or you can send it directly to the church.I am struggling for words to explain to you what this means to me.Thank you all for coming and reading my blog.Thank you for lifting me up in your prayers.I pray that this scholarship will be used as a beautiful testimony for a beautiful life.

New Cherry Grove Baptist Church
114 County Rd 826
Buna,Texas 77612

Friday, December 4, 2009

DONE VIDA


I received this beautiful medallion in the mail today from the donor services organization.We had made the decision to donate Rachels heart valves, and pericardium.They had called us within hours of the wreck.My husband and I decided that we could do this because it is a life saving donation.Rachel was the most loving and giving person.Even as a child.I remember on her 4th birthday I had gotten her a bouquet of balloons.Her brother Robin, who is older, came in the room and was admiring them She looked at him and said "here Rob, you can have one".If she had money she spent it on others.ALWAYS.The medal is supposed to be for the headstone.I think it is beautiful,a beautiful reminder of a beautiful life.If you see me in walmart wearing it as a necklace looking like Flava Flav,just smile and say "its beautiful".If you've never thought about being a donor,think about it.I have requested that the recipients contact me.I look forward to that day.
Done Vida=Donate Life

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Shields of strength pt 2

I hope you all read the post from Nov.23 " Shields of strength",if not stop here and go read it.Tuesday morning before I got out of bed I prayed.I prayed that God would help me with my faith.Why would he leave me now.What does he want me to do?.I had been having days where it was so hard to hear.Well on my facebook I had a message from the brother of the man who started the Shields of Strength company!!!He had done a google search on their tags and my blog came up. He took the time to read it and shared it with his brother.I gotta tell you these Vaughan brothers are the real deal.They were very touched by what they had read. I wish I had made more post because soo much of what has happened to us since the wreck is not on here.Anyway, I was so touched that they would read my little blog and then take the time to reach out to me .If you are not familiar with their company go to their website and just read Kenny Vaughans' story.If you have a young boy, MAKE them read it too.I have corresponded with both brothers and I have to say their words have spoke volumes to me.All this I'm sure is making Rachel smile.I can hear her freakin out about it so clearly, which makes this all the more special to me.This is all I have wanted since I sat and started this blog.I want everyone to know about my Rachel ,and about our Jesus.I have included the link to the website.Click on the title of this blog and then click on "our story" and read the testimonials too.I feel like Christmas has come early.
Oh and my post that morning on facebook I had wrote"word of God speak."it did.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Learning to Fly


Its odd how everything has a different meaning .Songs,poems, in everything I look for a way to connect them to Rachel or to my feelings.I hadn't read any books on grief or how to grieve ,until today.I was gifted today with a huge basket full of goodies,so much thought was put into every part of it.A book written by 2 ladies about grief was in the basket.I thumbed through it.I really wanted to try to stay away from things that talk about Heaven or anything like that until I had sorted some things out for myself.I figured if it wasn't in the Bible I didn't need to know it.This book is just about grief.Not so much how I should grieve, but just examples or types of grief and different circumstances. In the book there is a quote from Jonathan Livingston Seagull".I read it a re-read about 10 times.This quote had came to one of the writers in a dream after her brother had died=

"If our friendship depends on space and time, then when we finally overcome space and time, we've destroyed our own brotherhood. But overcome space, and all you have left is Here. Overcome time and all you have left is Now. And in the middle of Here and Now, don't you think that we might see each other once or twice?"
It will take a few readings to get it,or maybe you won't.
After reading that quote,I searched for the book on line to try to understand it.And thats when I found this gem=

"When you come to the edge of all the light you have known, and are about to step out into darkness, Faith is knowing one of two things will happen =There will be something to stand on, or you will be taught to fly."
Which makes me remember the song my niece sang at church
"When I call on Jesus all things are possible.You can mount on wings like eagles and soar."
Some days I do feel like I'm flying.I think that the days I feel so low are the days I am relying on "me" too much for strength.Which reminds me of yet another song
"I'm learning to fly, but I ain't got wings."

(rach took this pic)

Friday, November 27, 2009

ThanksLiving


How can I begin to describe the feelings I had in the days leading up to Thanksgiving.There are so many elements to them.Remember how you felt on 9-11?How about after seeing the effects of hurricane Katrina in New Orleans?Or Rita on us?Now think of the saddest movie you've ever seen.The saddest song you know.Put them all in a blender and pour it in your heart.Thats only a fraction of the sorrow.It is all encompassing.But honestly,it sometimes is like that on a daily basis.A holiday or "special"day just intensifies it.But with Gods help I continue to put one foot in front of the other and try to do what I think He wants me to do.
So Wednesday after all the food was bought I decided I wanted fresh Calla lilies to put out on the table to represent Rach on Thanksgiving day.Well of course NO ONE had them.Extra anxiety is really not what I need.I just had to let it go.I decided to just light a candle instead.Well that morning Kenny got up early and started a fire.He had also lit a candle,something he has never done.I knew what it meant .I had prayed before I even opened my eyes that God would see me through this day as he had all the others.It was a double whammy.Thursday and Thanksgiving.I realized that it would always be that.I also realized that God would be there on every one of them.I started cooking the meal for the day.I was at a place where it was just waiting on the bird, so I knew it was time to go to Rachs garden.I wouldn't be able to do anything else until I went.I went in my pj's with a betty boop do rag on my head.I went and sat and just asked God to clear my mind.It was so quiet.I heard nothing in my mind but the wind.It was odd,I could hear the wind in the woods but I did not feel it.I only felt the warmth of the sun.It was so bright that morning I had to shield my eyes.I just sat with my head down just breathing and listening.When I opened my eyes the first thing I saw were these 2 flowers in an Althea tree right by her.Only 2 were within reach .There were others really high up tho.I didn't need Calla lilies.I just needed to "be still".Why is that so hard for me?I brought them home ,vased them, and put them on the table.Robin came over and we ate,we played video games,and we breathed.Robin got the Christmas tree down so me and the girls could get busy on that.It is going to be a beautiful tree.Its all so bittersweet.We bought things Rach would like for the tree.She would have loved it.I'm so gonna need something bigger than a mustard seed to get through this!

Dear Lord for the sake of those whose lives I touch ,increase my faith.amen

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Gratitude



I can't overlook the fact that it is Thanksgiving,I've tried,but it ain't working.We are going to stay home and just eat and let the day and our emotions unfold.I know that it will be okay,not perfect,but okay.I want my children to see gratitude in my heart because I am so very thankful.For all my family and friends that pray for me daily.For all of Rachs friends that keep in touch and make me smile.For my little girls who daily let me see glimpses of Rach in them.For my sons who try to be so very brave for me and for the being such great and willing huggers.For all that my immediate family does and for all the things I know they would do if I needed them to ,I am very thankful.I am thankful for a husband who can see through my fragile smile and know what I need;who picks up the slack with the housework or the little girls when I am falling.I am thankful for my Lord and Savior and for all His promises that I cling too.But most of all this year I am thankful for each and every second I had to spend with my beautiful Rach.I am thankful that I wasn't just her "Mom".I'm thankful for our laughter together ,our singing together,our joking together and even the tears.I am so thankful for my beautiful Rachel.

Breath in every moment and hold them in your heart.
We took this photos last Thanksgiving.I am thankful for them too.

Praise and glory and wisdom and THANKS and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever.Amen!rev7:12

Monday, November 23, 2009

Shields of strength


I got up early today determined to finish cleaning out Rachs room.First I repainted it a very soft "oyster'color.Then came the hard part.I took out her furniture.I turned her room into a sitting room.I went to my moms house and borrowed some of her things to help pull the room together.It was just too hard to go in that room and see her unmade bed,and have it feel so empty ...After I got back from moms with my goodies, and started putting the room together I started to feel very panicky,like maybe I had made the wrong decision.I reached up to get some of her trophies off the top shelf and dangling on one of them were these shields of strength.I had been in this room countless times lately and had never seen them. The verses on them were just what I needed to hear.

2Tim. 1:7 For God has not given me the spirit of fear,but the power of love and of a sound mind.

Joshua 1:9 I will be strong and courageous.I will not be terrified or discouraged;for the Lord my God is with me wherever I go.

I finished the room.It is so peaceful.It is full of Rachels favorite things.It is full of her.I am so thankful for the strength I have through the Lord.I'm so thankful I "found" what God needed me to know today,

Friday, November 20, 2009

I Carry Her Heart


This poem is the reason for the title of this blog.I heard it in a movie around Labor day weekend and loved it.I had this urgency to share it with Rach.I pulled it up on the computer and she read it.She loved it too.I think about this poem all the time.I hope when she read it she knew that it was for her.She is with me ALWAYS.Today the girls and I went to Rachels garden.It was the first time that Kennedy didn't cry while we were there.

i carry your heart with me
(i carry it in my heart)
i am never without it
(anywherei go you go,my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
i fear no fate
(for you are my fate,my sweet)
i want no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it's you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Heaven In The Face Of My Little Girl

Its been a while since I posted.Kennedy's birthday was the 13th.I think it was harder than Rachs was.My pain has been coming in HUGE waves lately.It is a sorrow that is so raw .It doesn't last for long,but it just is all consuming.To try to deny it is like trying to contain a volcano.It has to come out.For me it is a very private thing.It is like a gaping open wound or the worst burn you can imagine.If you were to touch those, thats how intense these feelings are.I know my family and so many friends are only a phone call away ,but this is how I have to walk through the fire,right now.Thats one thing I've learned,just when you get used to feeling things a certain way they change.
If you haven't heard this song by Steven Curtis Chapman go to youtube and watch his video.He lost his little girl in a car accident also.His older son accidentally ran over her in their driveway.This is such a powerful song.I only could do 1 verse. Keep me in your prayers please.I know most of my feelings are in anticipation of the upcoming holidays.Plus when I am alone now, is usually the times when I was with Rach or she would be texting me .There is such an emptiness.But there are precious little ones that pull me back in,with a hug or something funny.Hug your children extra tight tonight, especially the ones that think they are too big for it.
video

Thursday, November 12, 2009

If we are the body


The weekend after Rachs funeral,our good friends that own Sertinos',where Rachel was working, came to visit us.They had been out of the country on a business trip .They brought me everything from work that was Rachels. Her sign in card.Her application.They had even cut out the article from the paper.I was so glad,because I have this need to see any and everything that has anything to do with her.
I noticed on the outside of this clear folder a crucifix.I had never seen it.Nancy saw me looking at it and explained that it was Rachel's.Rach had put it on her apron at work,but then she took it off and put it on the computer so employees would see it when they signed in or out.I'm in my 40's and struggle a lot for ways to talk about Jesus with my friends,much less people I just met.Rachel had only worked there for a few days when she began talking with them about her Jesus.I was glad to hear this story. You know we are so quick to judge young people because of how they look, or just because of how very visible their struggles with the world seem. I think with age you just get better at hiding them ,because we ALL struggle.We all stumble.Rachel struggled,but she never quit .I've always tried to not judge,but now more so than ever I try to look at people in a different way. The truth is we don't know what is in a persons heart.We don't know what that person lays awake at night and thinks about or talks about with God.Rachel loved the song by Casting Crowns "If we are the body".

Jesus paid much too high a price
For us to pick and choose who should come
And we are the Body of Christ

Take a minute and watch the video.Listen to the words.Click on the title of this post"If we are the body" it will take you to the video.

Live a life of love,just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.eph.5:2

Monday, November 9, 2009

Sweet Sister V


In the past 7 weeks I have received so many cards,emails,and messages from friends and family and some from people I don't even know.I keep every card.I reread them ALOT.Right after the wreck I received a card from a lady in Beaumont who had read the article in the Enterprise. She had written my name on the envelope and then she wrote "mother of Rachel Vidor tx and that's it.Well I got it!I got the letter.I'm sure going to church with the lady who is over the post office was a huge help,I guess that being a small town helped too,anyway ,it just amazed me.The card was beautiful.She wrote a letter on the card to me also.It was such a beautifully written card.She had wrote"God in His Almighty Graciousness strengthened you in your greatest time of need through spiritual song".I can't tell you how many times I read that card.I needed so badly to put a face to that card.I needed that lady to know I got it, it helped me.I tried to find her phone number, not there.I "googled" her address and found her street.Several times I tried to go but I would hear the voice say not yet.This morning I before I knew it , I was sitting in her driveway.When I knocked on the door I said who I was and the lady said hold on that was my daughter.The sweetest face came smiling into the room.I told her who I was and could barely speak, and I just hugged her.It didn't feel like hugging a stranger.I knew this woman.Sister V. I knew her heart. We sat and talked.It was such a relief to see that sweet face.It was so easy to be there.Their home had such a peacefulness about it.They were getting ready for bible study that morning,but Sister V made time for me.We connected in a lot of ways.I needed her to know all about Rach , and all about the funeral and well...everything.She and her mother both shared with me stories that confirmed even more what I already knew.We serve a very powerful,compassionate God.I asked if I could take her picture and she agreed.I said I would not use her name,I would call her Mrs.V,she said people call her Sister V.I told her that was what we called Rach...sister.My sister always called her sister.I will talk to Sister V again.I asked her to read my blog so she could know more about me and about my beautiful Rachel.Sister V radiates peace.The scripture in the card says=
The Lord is faithful to all his promises
and loving toward all He has made .psalm 145:13.
It reminds me of the song Michelle sang as the invitation at the funeral

God's still faithful.
In the midst of it all He's faithful.
When the earth beneath your feet
gives way in defeat He's faithful.
When its just too much for you
and you don't know what to do
God will carry you through.
When hope is all gone
and you've no strength to hold on
God's still faithful.

God is still carrying me through.
With the help of compassionate people like Sister V.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Lord I give you me

Tonight we had a member of our church give her testimony.She shared how God has been working in her life since the tragic death of her husband in a plane crash a year ago.She has been such a source of inspiration to me .She has helped lead me through this thick fog of sorrow.She sends me cards and messages that remind me I'm not alone.Tonight before she spoke, I had the privilege of playing the electric drums with a small group of us from MBC.The song that was sang was called "Lord I give you me".This song had been placed in my friends life during her grief. I had never heard it before this week,but it was like it was already in my heart just waiting to be sung,or banged out on some drums. I brought the silver bracelet that was found in Rachs car with the verse from Revelation 21:4 engraved on it.I hung it on the drums. I played them for her.I wasn't singing the song ,but I look at it like I was the heartbeat of the song....Carrying her heart in the song.

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."rev 21:4

Lord, I give You me
I give You my all
I hold nothing back
I'm answering Your call
Though I live or die
Your glory is my life
my royal destiny

Lord, I give You me

Lord, I give You me
It may not look like much
I know that I need change
I know I need Your touch
Take me as I am
Place me in Your plan
That's where I want to be

Lord, I give You me
Lord, with every breath
I'll worship You in life
I'll worship You in death
I lay down my heart, It's all I have to give
As long as I live

Lord, I give You me

Friday, November 6, 2009

I know why the caged bird sings


This week was a very long,hard week.I didn't anticipate being so low after having such a wonderful Sunday.Grief is very unpredictable.Sometimes I can hear a song, no problem.The same song different day,HUGE reaction.I can feel my emotions begin to change.I can feel them welling up inside of me.I had an awful migraine on Thursday and I think my consuming all the chocolate out of the candy bowl didn't help.But Thursday was one of the hardest days I've had.I woke up in tears.I went to Rachels' garden after I dropped the girls off at school.I cried the whole way there.I miss so many things about her.We spent a lot of time together in the car.Music was always a huge part of our life.We sang together.I was Faith she was Tim.I was Jon Bon Jovi she was my Richie Sambora.Whatever song was on= it was an unspoken between us.It just happened.I feel the need to sing now more than ever.I feel in some way like she expects me too.I was thinking about something I heard Mya Angelou say about the poem"I know why the caged bird sings".She said- it has too..That's how I feel.

"I know why the caged bird sings..

It's not a carol of joy or glee,
but a prayer that it sends from its heart's deep core,
a plea that upward to heaven it flings.
I know why the caged bird sings. "

Thursday about 7pm I went to church to "sing".I left with a headache ,I came home with a smile and a song in my heart.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Star light Star bright



I lost my 19 year old daughter on September 17,2009 in a car wreck right at the end of our road.Her birthday was on November 1.We had a ballon release and a wonderful day of celebration.This is the miracle that I believe took place that night.
I haven't updated in a couple of days ,because I wanted everyone to be sure and see the video from Sunday.It was such a beautiful day.Every part of it was just spectacular.Throughout this whole time God has been with us. He has shown me things that some might just say is coincidence.I say it is peace.Peace within the midst of the storm.I have debated on whether or not to share this part with you.I don't want my words to minimize the power of what God can do .1 Peter chapter 3 about verse 15 says "Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect."I will try with the greatest of respect to share this moment.Open your hearts and listen...
On Sunday night after everyone had left,I stepped out on the back porch to just take a breath and be alone in my thoughts.It was a beautiful night ,I could see airplanes,3 of them, staggered in the sky.I thought it was weird because I had never realized you could see them so clearly," hmmm red lights on them too, not just white", I thought.I stared up into the sky and looked at the stars,and began to talk to
God, something I do a lot.I thanked him for the day,the beautiful day.I thanked him for Rachel.When I said her name my next sentence I said out loud "I know where you are" and then I said "And I know you're with me".At that very moment, as soon as the words were said ,this star right at the top of my sight ever so slightly glimmered and then began to gently fall.It fell only for a few seconds,glimmered again,and then faded out.Okay,I knew it wasn't a plane,God showed me very clearly what a plane looked like, remember???I needed 3 of them .Its like God said "show her a plane so she'll get this".I so got it. I dropped to my knees and just cried.I am so thankful for each and every thing that God has done for me.I want so badly for God to be this real for you too.Close your eyes and let your mind see what I saw.Let it be real to you.It was beyond beautiful.
This is my prayer for you=
"When I think of the wisdom and scope of God's plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now glory be to God! By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope" (Ephesians 3:14-20 NLT)
Click here to view other Women of Faith Wednesday entires.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Rachs Birthday

video

The boots


When Rachel was in Jr. high I bought her a pair of black boots for her birthday.They were the knee-hi patent leather, she loved them.It started a new tradition.On her birthday I would buy her new boots.She called them her "hooker" boots.If you knew Rach , you know she loved her boots.Well this year I took her little sisters to get new boots for Rachs birthday.Kennedy found some that looked like some Rach had.Kaitlin ,who is the 6 yr old,picked out a pair made by the company"RACHEL".They have her name on the box and on the inside of the boot.And of course the heart.Somethings just absolutley blow me away.Kennedy and I had a little "moment" in the store, but KK just smiled.She knew what she had.She is so wise beyond her years.Today at 2pm we will go to Rachs school and release balloons.Its a beautiful day, for a beautiful girl.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Its ruff


Within hours of Rachels wreck my sweet friend Marilyn ,and her parents ,came to my house with food,hugs,prayers,advice and much love.They knew the pain I was in because they too had lost a child in an automobile accident. I breathed in every word she said and held it in my heart.There is a deep connection no matter the age of the person,when you know that they have had to feel that pain.To stand and look in the eyes of that person and see down into their very soul is something I do not take for granted. Every ones grief is different ,but I try to understand and learn from each and every person.One of the things that Marilyn shared with me was that some days you would feel so alone, even tho I was around people, I would feel like everyone had moved on .She said on those days she would pray for God to send her someone or even send her a dog.When she first told me that I honestly couldn't imagine how that felt. I wasn't there -YET. I do have times when I think I can't even take a breathe because I just feel like the wind has been knocked out of me,or my sadness is just so dark.Most days its my friends or my family that are always there to pull me out of it. Most times they don't even know what they did.Well today I understood what my sweet friend meant.I am excited about tomorrow ,Rachs birthday, but I am also very aware of the sadness welling up. Then my new friend came into our lives.He had been visiting a couple of times, and the girls just love him,so I went and asked the neighbors would they sell him since he seemed to be just what we all needed.This gracious woman said if he is helping those girls consider him yours.I gotta tell ya,when this dog looked into my eyes, I heard my sweet friends words"send me a dog". I didn't have to ask , he showed up.He looks at me as if he's saying:I got this.I know what to do. Today he did. tomorrow ...well for now I only do 1 day at a time.Oh yea his name is BO, and he loved being a cowboy ballerina.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

On my knees



I went this afternoon to the church and brought a flower arrangement that my mom had put together for the front of our church in memory of Rach for her 19th birthday.I doubt I go to church Sunday,but I wanted these flowers there for her.After I set them down I turned to leave and then I just stopped,like I had hit a wall.I turned and went back to the front , to the altar and just fell to my knees. I closed my eyes and just knelt there.I thanked God for my beautiful Rachel.I thanked him for being with me through this devastation.I told him I was willing to do whatever it was he needed me to do ,and then I just stayed there, in the silence , in the dim lit sanctuary knowing that when I don't know what to pray for the Spirit will intercede .I honestly didn't know what to pray for.Last Thursday I needed to be at Rach's garden, this Thursday I was where I needed to be, on my knees.



Rach and her sweet friend Darline sang this in church one day,


There are days,
When I feel
The best of me Is ready to begin
Then they're days,
When I feel
I'm letting go,And soaring on the wind
But I've learned in laughter or in pain,
How to survive
I get on my knees
I get on my knees
there I am before the Love thatChanges me
See, I don't know how,But there's power
when I’m on my knees.


I can be
in a crowd
or by myself.
or almost anywhere,
when I feel, there's a need
to talk with God, he is Emmanuel,
when I close my eyes,
no darkness there
there's only light.
When I get on my knees
When I get on my knees
there I am before the Love that changes me
see I don't know how, but there's power in the blue sky
I don't know how but there's power and in the midnight
and I don't know how but there's power when I’m on my knees.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

i pizzle troublezz

I have been trying for the last month to get Rachels ipod to connect to my computer so I can download 3000 pics off of it. It ain't happening.This morning I called Apple and explained to "Josh" what was going on.I know people make up stories all the time to try to get help with an ipod they "found",so I wasn't sure how this would go.We were on the phone for almost an hour.Sweet guy,tried everything to help but it wouldn't do it.But he did say I could bring it to a store in Houston and they could put them on a flash drive for me.Perfect!!!!I just want everything that has her in it.I can give it my sister this weekend and it'll be done.So then I go and check my email and find this treasure=

Notes from Joshua, your support agent...I am keeping you and your family in my prayers. I know the loss of a child is very difficult. I apologize that we could not get issue resolved but I believe the apple store will accomplish that goal. Stay strong and know people are still praying for you. Joshua

WOW! it was a standard email and then this was posted at the bottom.How very sweet and unexpected.Its the little things like this that feed me.I am so thankful for each and every person that says they lift me up.
Little is much when God is in it.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

get ready- get ready- get ready!


So this past Sunday I had a good mad going ,as we like to say,because I knew what was going to happen the next Sunday.It's Rachels' birthday.I wasn't mad at anyone,I just was having some very real emotions.I was also sad,anxious, any and all of the emotions you can name.I posted on my facebook that I wanted the week to go slow so God could get me ready,well once again I tried to put limits on God. One day later.....I'M READY!!!!!!!!!!!I don't know why at this point I even have a doubt,God has taken care of every part of everything that I have been through.Large or small He's been in it all.So we made our plans to release 20 balloons in her honor ,and then I found out some of Rachels friends were making the same plans so I said lets do it all together! A lot of her friends are coming ,or if there are too many we'll go to the church, and we are going to release some balloons.We will do the symbolic 20 for her birthday, but then I want to just see a sky full of balloons.We are also going to put her photo and info on the balloons so if someone finds one they can respond to us.I pray that this will be another opportunity for God to use me in a big way.It almost feels like Christmas in my heart,I am so excited.And I'm so thankful.I'm so thankful for such a loving and compassionate God.

"for your Father knows what you need before you ask him"mat.6:8
Hope to see you there, I know your with me in spirit.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

I have several out of town family and friends that visit my blog so my dad suggested I share this article that was written about the wreck. I remember so clearly being on the phone with this lady and thinking " i can't even form a sentence" and then I realized, this is my chance.Tell this woman how special Rachel is to you.Tell her what you know! I was amazed at how much was written. Usually they just mention that there was a wreck and thats it.I'm so thankful to Beth for this=
from the Beaumont Enterprise
UPDATE: Mom came upon wreck that killed daughter
By BETH RANKIN
September 17, 2009Posted: September 17, 2009, 8:42 AM CDT Last updated: September 18, 2009, 2:39 PM CDT

Suzette Ratcliff had just left her home in Vidor at 8:15 a.m. Thursday when she came upon a wreck at the corner of Decker Road and FM 105.
It took her a moment to realize that her 19-year-old daughter Rachel was inside the green Pontiac Sunfire that had collided with an 18-wheeler.
Instantly, she said, the lyrics to a song she had just heard popped into her head.
Christians never die, the song proclaimed. They just move away.
Rachel Clark, a 2008 graduate of VidorHigh School, had just left home when an 18-wheeler struck her car on the driver’s side.
Ratcliff said her daughter was already dead by the time she arrived at the scene.
Memorial Funeral Home of Vidor will handle funeral arrangements.
“I’m just so very tired,” Ratcliff said in a phone interview Thursday night. “Words fail me. I was very blessed to have her for those few years.”
Clark, who had recently worked as a production assistant at KBMT, had recently started a job at Sertino’s Restaurant. She was planning to go back to school, her mother said, even though she wasn’t quite sure what to study.
“She just knew she was so much bigger than where she was,” Ratcliff said. “The things she wanted to do she couldn’t do in this area.”
Those who knew Clark said she was a talented singer and photographer.
She used her music and photography skills to produce Power Point presentations for her church.
“She had a gift for being able to capture emotions with her photography,” Ratcliff said.
Kristen Stuck attended VidorHigh School with Clark and said they were good friends.
She recalled fond memories of a church scavenger hunt and a trip to Orlando to sing at Disney World with their high school choir.
“She was amazing,” said Stuck, a 19-year-old Vidor resident. “She was goofy and wacky and she could always brighten your day.”
Stuck said she had just arrived at work at Walgreens in Vidor when she received word that her friend had died.
“I didn’t believe it at all,” she said. “I wanted proof more than anything else. I didn’t want to believe it was her.”
Stuck said that among her graduating class, even those who didn’t know her were affected by her death.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen,” she said. “She was the first loss in our class. It’s definitely a hard hit to all of us whether we knew her or not.”
Ratcliff said funeral arrangements will be made today.
Although Rachel is gone, Ratcliff said she takes comfort in the words of the song she heard just before her daughter passed away.
“The next verse says that something’s never lost ,if you know where it is,” she said. “And I know where she is. And I take a lot of comfort in that.”

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Lottie


Sometimes when I can't sleep or when I'm just feeling sad, I go back and reread cards,messages that were sent to me or to Rachel.Just hearing about the way people saw her and the way her life impacted them brings me so much comfort.One of Rachels friends from school had wrote"you were a larger than life person I only hope to be half the person that you were...
This person only knew her from school, he didn't have the almost 20 years that I had ,but he saw in her what I had known since she was very little.I always knew that God was going to use her in a very special way .We used to call her "Lottie" when she was about 4 years old,maybe even younger,because she was already witnessing to people.I remember her quizzing my sister one Sunday"how come you didn't go to church"?That was just the way she was.I am trying to prepare for November 1.This birthday will be very hard.This time of year was always her favorite.Everything that has to do with oct. nov. dec., she loved every part of it.I am trying to see what she saw in all of it. To see only the good, the beauty in it all.It's funny how so many pieces of songs come to mind like Merle Haggards "If we make it through December". I know there will be such a void in all of it.I feel the need to over-do everything hoping that it will make it easier for the little girls, and I guess for me too.


If we make it through December

Everythings gonna be alright I know.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Pressin on

I want to explain the previous post. I LOVE the fact that Rachs friends go and visit her "garden",I do.It comforts me greatly.What I meant by protecting her is keeping those who would go and spew hatred towards God or maybe even her.Some have chosen to do that online.I feel very sorry for them, but I want no part of that. Her garden is all I have left.I feel very protective of it,but I hope her friends and family understand that I don't feel I have to protect it from them.I know we are all just working it out. Have patience with me and my words.I don't seem to have an edit button these days.Thank you for coming and reading my blog.Thank you for remembering my Rach.I know more than 6 of you come and read this , how bout a shout out so I know you came by sometime.Joy does come in the morning!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Me too

Tonight at exactly 6:15, I was very sad.I had the overwhelming need to go to "Rachels' garden".It just seemed so urgent.Believe me when I say I know she's not there.Its just the place where her body is, the body I gave birth to.I feel very protective of that place. I almost wish it had a gate around it so I could lock it.Maybe I just feel that way because the reality is I couldn't protect her from what happened 5 weeks ago today.



John 11:35
me too

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

At the end of the road


At the end of the road
there is a place
where part of my heart sits still.
It sits and holds your love and grace,
Gods mercy I can feel.
At the end of the road
I never thought
that all your dreams would end.
That plans would change, life would stop
and healing would begin.
At the end of the road
I didn't know
I 'd have to say goodbye.
That everyday I'd see the place
where you first learned to fly.
At the end of the road
there is a choice,
The darkness or the light.
I choose the light, the Son of God
whose never left my side.
At the end of the road
I know there's life
there's life eternally.
And that is what i hope to see
and the end of the road
for me.
(the wreck happened at the end of our street, I have to see it every day.)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

One last smile


Well as I was attempting to get Rachel's cellphone to charge so I could download her pics on to my computer (which was not working) i finally realized she had a memory card in her phone,duh, .I was so excited to have FINALLY figured out how to get these photos.There were about 300 on there.Some videos of a concert she went to.Photos of her trip the weekend of 9-11 to go see her friend graduate from Navy boot camp. Lots of good pics of Rachel being her usual silly self.She took so many pictures of herself,which is so odd considering how she didn't like people looking at her.This photo was the very last one that was taken on her phone.It was taken on 9-16-09,the day before the wreck.She has on her work uniform,she was on her way to work.This is it...one last smile.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Angel on my shoulder

Rachel in her angel costume with her brother cowboy Robin.


Tonight when we were getting ready for bed I saw Kaitlin out of the corner of my eye doing this motion on her shoulder with her hand.I thought she was doing some new dance or something crazy.When I would look at her she would stop.I turned real quick and said"What are you doing ,dancing"?She looked at me like I was crazy and said "no mam, I'm loving on Rachel".I knew I needed to choose my next words very carefully.I asked her if she was there now, and she shook her head yes.She said she does it all the time. I said "Who told you she was with you".She said "I already knew it,God told me". There was not a smirk or a goofy smile to be found on that childs face, it was very matter of fact, and I'm at a loss for words to make you understand all the feelings I felt. I just looked very hard into that little girls face and she stared just as hard back at me and then I just grabbed her and hugged her tiny little frame as hard as it would allow me to.Take it for whatever you want,in a way it comforts me.

I'm Free

Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free. I'm following the path God chose for me.
I took His hand when I heard Him call. I turned my back and left it all.
I could not stay another day to laugh, to love, to work or play.
Tasks left undone must stay that way. I've now found peace at the end of day.
If my parting has left a void, then fill it with remembered joys.
A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss; Ah yes, these things I, too, will miss.
Be not burdened with times of sorrow. Look for the sunshine of tomorrow.
My life's been full, I savored much; Good friends, good times, a loved one's touch.
Perhaps my time seems all too brief. Don't lengthen your pain with undo grief.
Lift up your heart and peace to thee. God wanted me now. He set me Free.


I read this everyday sometimes several times a day.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

On the 17th

Of all days for me to get the autopsy in the mail.It had to be today. I don't even know why I opened it.Did it really matter?It didn't change anything about the day,there was just this part of me that needed to know.I stopped by the mailbox on the way back from town, and there it was.I had it opened before I knew it.I tried to read it.There was way too much information in it.What I needed it to say was, she didn't suffer.Thats it.I don't care how much her liver weighed.Just tell me she felt nothing.I read what I needed to know closed the paper and almost had to crawl into the house.My legs couldn't support the burden I was carrying.I sat in the corner of my kitchen on the floor until I could stand.Why did I read it?It will be put away where I, nor my kids, will ever have to see it again.On this day,the 17th ,one month ago, my daughter was killed in a car wreck.I refuse to say accident.The impact instantly killed her.That is all I will ever say.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

F is for friends..







Thursday already again.This was a very long day,but it was a good one.My sweet friend from church set the tone for the day, she brought me a card that said everything I needed to hear.I finally was able to put some things away that had been out since the wreck.Cards, papers, a bag full of stuff from the funeral home, I just kept it on the kitchen table.It just seemed to hard to do something with it.Well today it all found a home.I cleaned the house,then I made a phone call that I didn't want to make,never in my life thought I would have to make."Hi I'm wondering where the autopsy report is on my daughter"?what a punch in the gut.I need that paper,not that it will change the outcome,I just need it to move on from that part of the day.I made the call. I'll get it very soon.
This evening 2 of Rachs very dear friends came to visit.We talked, we laughed,...I butchered the song I wrote on the guitar.
They were very polite about it.We looked at pictures, we shared stories,we shared tears.We all came away tho with the very same feeling.We're gonna be ok.I gave them each something that was Rach's that they had given to her.Something to remind them what God has shown me through all of this .That he can use ME ,imperfect as I am, to leave a GODPRINT on someones life.He used Rachel ,and he can use them too.I'm so glad they helped me see what I needed to see today,I'm so glad they listened when Jesus told them ,I've got something for you to do .Keep listening girls..

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Thank you

I worked all morning on a new fall wreath for "Rachel's garden".That's what my little girls call the place where she is buried.I've had a hard time deciding what to refer to it as;the grave.the cemetery,her resting place.Nothing ever sounded right.I always had to stop and think about what I was going to say and I hated it.This is where she will be forever, what do I call it?Well the girls ,Kennedy(10)and Kaitlin(6)solved that for me.Rachel's garden it is.So,after I worked on the wreath ,I went to my mom's house to get more flowers to finish it and then we brought it to the cemetery.I noticed before I ever got out of the car that someone had put flowers on the foot of her grave.This beautiful bouquet of flowers was the first thing my eyes went too. At first the thought of someone being here without me was unsettling,I just feel very protective ,even more so now.But that quickly faded when I remembered how many were at visitation and the funeral.Of course people will come see her.Maybe I just thought no one else would ever give her another thought.Maybe I just don't know what I'm supposed to feel.I don't think there is a right or a wrong way to feel,its just important to feel it. Thank you kind person for loving my Rach.Thank you for the flowers.Thank you for taking the time to go to Rachels garden.Thank you for reading this blog,I don't feel so alone.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

One last laugh

Last night I was up very late.I was not sad , I just needed to see pictures of Rach.I read post her friends had made on facebook.They all remember her the same way,that beautiful hair,beautiful skin,beautiful eyes and her laugh.Everyone talks about how they laughed with her.I can't tell you how many times in my mind I've seen her throw her head back and laugh.I so wanted to hear it just one more time.Well last night God gave me that chance.One of Rachels dear friends Brittini was online last night feeling the same feelings I was feeling.We found each other and reminded each other of how very special knowing Rachel is.She sent me this video that Rach had sent her.We were being our usual silly selves.This isn't about my bad dancing ,in the video you can hear Rachel laugh.Her laughter is the only thing you can really hear in the video. I get to hear my precious Rachel laugh ...thank you Brittni..
videoits towards the end when you can hear her.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The dream

It's very odd to me how sometimes I can think about Rachel or talk about Rachel and it doesn't afffect me,and then I can be doing the very same thing with someone else and I'm a mess.It's usually with people that didn't really know her or with someone who really understands my loss .I guess to look at someone that knows that pain , to see my pain on someone elses face is just too much. The hardest thing for me is to see Kennedy's(my 10 year old) grief.Tonight was especially hard.She told me that she had a dream last night that we were in outerspace and we were standing on a star.Someone else was there but she didn't know who they were.They gave her a fruit roll up.On the roll up it said"if you eat this you will die ,and see Rachel." She said she ate it but she didn't die.I fumbled for words, some sort of reassurance for her that she was just missing Rach and she stayed on her mind while she was sleeping. I asked if she was praying before she went to bed and she said she prayed at least 2 times a day.Later at bedtime I heard Kennedy say ,as she always does,"goodnight Rachel".but this time she could barely talk she was so emotional.I ran to her side to try again to comfort her.She just wants to see her one more time was all she could say.I told her the next time we see her we will see her forever. I know her little mind and heart does not understand.Seeing my pain on my childs face is very hard.I prayed for her so hard , so loud ,over her sobbing.(In our weakness ,He is strong.)
I wonder if I would have eaten the fruit roll up if it were my dream?Rachels boy/friend told me he felt closer to her now than before.He said its like shes ALWAYS with him.I want that feeling for my child.Sweet dreams tonight Kennedy.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Dreams

I went to Rachels facebook and found where she had posted this song I had wrote and sent to her.Like I said before everything has such a different meaning now.I wrote this in about 15 minutes it just had to get out of me.It was almost a month to the day that I sent it to her.When you read the song you'll understand what I mean. I didn't know til later how she felt about it.

"So my mom went to some substitue teacher workshop today.Apparently it was mind numbing.And while she was there, she wrote this song and just emailed it to me.I cried forever.Not even because of the song, but just what she wrote to me and the realization I had.For the longest time I could never understand different things about my mom and why she did certain things. But 20 years later, I get it.So I just thought I'd share it.Ps She needs an ending though, as you can see lolAnd a title."
so while i was in the workshop i thought i was gonna kill someone so i decided to write a song. as you will see your not the only one who wonders what couldve been.

been so long since I thought about the things I'd like to do.
Ive given up on bein me,too busy pleasin you.
i need to find a way to see the dreams I had come true
.Even if it isnt me,theres something I can do.

(chorus)Give my dreams away
Ive got to let them go,go and find somone
whose heart can let them grow.
Give my dreams away
I'm too busy for them now.
Time has gone its been too long they wouldnt know me anyhow.

What happened to the little girl who had so many plans.
I closed my eyes and realized what slipped right through my hands.
This little girl has turned into a woman lost in time.
So take my dreams and give them wings
I want to see them fly.

Give my dreams away,
I've got to let them go, go and find someone
whose heart can let them grow.
Give my dreams away .
I'm too busy for them now.
Time has gone its been too long they wouldn't know me anyhow.


(was this for me or for her
we donated her heart valves and the paracardium.)
I love the part where Rach says I GET IT>isn't that all any mom wants.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Heavenly Day

video

Today was such a wonderful day.I know that next thursday i might slip back into deep sorrow,but for today and all the joy that I had in it I am truly thankful.Rachel and I shared this song together many times.She enjoyed it more when her aunt played it on the guitar and we pretended that we sang it better than the woman singin it. Music was Rachel's escape and comfort. I guess its only fitting that now it does the same for me.I use it to soothe ,to remember, and to comfort.Before we left the night of visitation I stood by her and sang this song with her one last time.In case you were wondering no I didn't forget -3weeks today,this Heavenly day.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Deep Impact



I found this paper Rachel had written about me while she was in high school.I remember the day she left it in my room for me to find and read.It reads so differently to me now.It helps me to let go of all the things that satan wants me to dwell on. The joy robbers .Theres too much good to remember.This paper that I had forgotten about ,God placed in my hands today.This posting is not to be boastful ,it is only to show how God is still working in my life to help me find comfort and peace. If you click on the paper, it should make it easier to read.Notice how many times she says"my mom". Not my mother , my mom.I was her mom,and I am so thankful.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Beautiful One

I wrote this song(i guess thats what you call it) today.In my mind its a real slow country song.Like maybe June Carter singing with some awesome harmony.I'm still workin on it.Theres just so much inside of me I need to get out.Thanks for listening...

oh beautiful one
who came from my dreams
you didnt stay long
you were needed its seems.
youve gone to a place
where no pain is known
angel gather your wings
he's calling you home.

oh beautiful one
forever youll be.
your heart will live on
i know your with me.
youve gone to a place
where no pain is known.
angel gather your wings
he's calling you home.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

God is in the details

I've been trying to remember all of the things that happened before ,during,and after the wreck.The week prior ,it was almost like God had a checklist of things for me so saying goodbye would not be as hard.I was given a song that said"Christians never die,they just move away to a land of perfect peace one never ending day.In the presence of Jesus take comfort in this -somethings never lost when you know where it is."I thought it was powerful but had no idea of its true power.A couple of days later I watched a movie that had the E E Cummings poem "I carry your heart" in it.I couldn't get either of them out of my head.The next week I had such an urgency to share them with Rachel.In the car I played just the chorus of the song for her, told her I had never heard it put like that before , we talked about who could sing it. The same week I pulled the poem up on my computer and had her read it.She said she knew that poem and she loved it. That Thursday she was leaving to go to work.I made some peanut butter toast and then I jumped up to go to a garage sale down the street.There was an urgency in that too.Didn't fix my hair.Didn't brush my teeth 'just go -just go" is all I heard. When I got to the end of my street I saw people looking towards a fire truck.I remember saying out loud"not my baby" over and over.Then screaming it when I saw the car. The song .The poem.They both came in my head immediately as soon as I came upon the wreck.I knew as soon as I saw the car,she was gone.My whole body ached.I could feel my heart breaking.I felt a pull as if part of me was trying to go with her. Its was so intense,and so hard to put into words.I knew before they ever told me she was gone.I never saw her body leave the car. All I ever saw was her car.They said it was instantaneous.No suffering.When she was born it was so quiet and so quick, I had to ask them to make her cry.She left this world the same way she came in it. I find some peace in that.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

forever beautiful

For some reason this week was harder.Going to Rachels grave feels different every time.I find myself speaking out loud ,not necessarily to Rachel, just out loud.Its so peaceful there.But since I've never felt any of these feelings before, they feel so foreign.It's almost like I'm living someone elses life.But then I stand there and look at the mound of dirt and I know this is now my life.I will do this for the rest of my life.I wonder how long I will continue to count her death in weeks. When will I go to months.When will Thursdays not make me sick at my stomach.When will I not relate everything- EVERYTHING to her.Its like I have this need to make her part of everything I do.I guess because she was a part of everything.I know her little sisters are watching everything I do,so I try to make things look easier than they are.Its when I am alone that it is hard.It's when I'm alone that I am sad.Only because that is usually when it was just Rachel and I ,either texting, or watching tv or running errands.Its been two weeks since I told my best friend goodbye. Events of the day flood my mind. Forever beautiful is how a friend described her. Forever beautiful she will be.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Peace

I spoke Sunday morning,briefly.I needed my church family to know how much I loved them and how thankful I was for everything everyone did for us. I made a few notes so I wouldn't leave anyone out, and I noticed that before I went up I was so nervous. This bothered me. I had spoke just the week before to hundreds of people I didn't really know.Pleading with them to search their hearts, get things right before they left the funeral service. It was the easiest sermon I ever gave.I floated up on the stage , no notes, no worries.The words just poured out of me. I don't even remember all of them .My sister ,Becki, has a friend in Houston who does. I wish she would call me and tell me. I want to remember every part. I want everyday to have that peace that I had the day of my daughters funeral. What gets in the way?Is it me? Is it the world?I need that feeling. I crave that feeling. I want you to have that feeling.Maybe its here but I choose not to feel it?This is what keeps me awake at night.Did I use all my faith up or did I know I just had that one opportunity .I pray for that peace, that passeth all understanding.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Time

I'm so thankful for the almost 20 years I had with Rachel.I'm thankful for a husband who worked unbelieveable hours so I didn't have to work so I could be home with the kids.
Everytime I picture Rachel in my mind , she is smiling or laughing.We did a lot of laughing.We had a ton of inside jokes .She was my best friend.I try not to think about what I won't get to see her do and focus on all the things I was fortunate to see her do.So many memories flood my mind.When I think back I remember how much this world frustrated her.So many things she wanted to change.Her heart was so big.And so was her smile.Don't let another day go by without telling that person(you know who)you love them.Rachel knew how very much her entire family loved her.I'm so glad because in a matter of seconds life can change.Don't waste a minute of your time .Don't take a day for granted.Some of the last words I said to Rachel were "you've got time".Now go tell that person you love them.