How are you doing?

This post is my attempt at letting my family, friends and social media friends know how I'm doing.

I want to thank everyone for your out pouring of love and kindness.

Especially my friend Janet who dropped everything to fly down here for almost 2 weeks
just to be with me every minute, writing down all the details of planning a funeral when I could
barely hear the words, keep track of who was sending meals, flowers and gifts, cooking meals to freeze
before she left so Mike wouldn't starve and more things that I'm sure I will never know of.

 I want everyone to know I'm getting your messages, texts, calls, and cards.

I know it's done from love and I wish I was able (at this time) to respond in person.
I want you to know that your prayers and words are so appreciated.
I'm sure that is what's  getting us through.

I'm just incapable of talking to you without breaking down in tears and that's not good
for you or me.  I wish I was stronger.

So to answer your questions.

How am I doing at this time?
Are you feeling better yet?

I'm doing as well as I think most mothers could be.

I sometimes have to literally tell myself to breathe but those moments are coming less often.

I have finally begun to have somewhat of an appetite.  Yes Mom, I know I have to eat.

I've caught myself smiling a few times and as soon as the corner of my lips turn up the immediate
feeling of anguish and regret set in.  I'm filled with guilt.
And yes I know that Ryan would not want that.
 It doesn't change how I feel.

A few days ago I went through a good part of the day without tears.   I thought maybe I was
turning a corner, only to be followed by two days of mostly tears.  I know that I am going to go 
through stages but I feel like I'm going through all the stages everyday.

I go to the cemetery everyday.  I'm not sure I can envision a time when I won't want to
go visit him everyday.

How are you dealing with the holidays coming up?

We are a holiday family.  We love decorating and celebrating.  I wonder if
my love of those things will ever come back.  Ryan LOVED Halloween so this is especially hard
at this time.  I hate going in stores or watching TV to see those reminders.   Ryan already
had his costume planned for this year (yes, my 34 year old son still liked to dress up).

 He told me about what he was going to be months ago.

I was always nagging him about getting a haircut.  I loved the way he looked with short hair and his hair had been long for a couple years.  He was going to be Ragnar from the Vikings.  For those
who are familiar,  that requires a specific hair style.  He told me he was getting tired of his longer hair so not to worry because after Halloween he was going to get it cut.  My guilt over that is unending.
Why would a mother nag her grown son about something so insignificant as hair?
  Wasted time that I could of been praising his wonderful qualities.

My grandson's birthday was yesterday.  When I made myself go to the store to get his present
I had more than a few tears looking at all the Star Wars items.  Ryan was looking
so forward to going to the new movie coming out later this year.  He'd already bought
tickets for himself and Mike (his dad) to go.  I also knew he had made plans to go with Austin (his girlfriend's son that he thought of as a son) and his best friend, Zach.  Probably his youngest sister too.
That's is definitely going to be a day I'm not looking forward to.

When I go to the grocery store I steer away for anything that I know he loved to eat.
I don't want to eat it if he can't.  I know it doesn't make sense but there you have it.

So the answer to that question is, I'm not dealing well.  I'm not looking forward to the holiday season.
I'm hoping that will change in years to come.  I'm opting out this year.

You know Ryan wouldn't want you to be sad, don't you?

I don't really have an answer to that.  

Let me know if there is something I can do?

We  have been blessed with the best family, friends (including social media friends) and neighbors who have prayed for us, sent flowers and plants, made food, sent cards and messages of
encouragement and generally surrounding us with love.
 I can never be more thankful than I am for that.

I know that I haven't been in touch with most of you personally but I will as soon as I'm able.

I am most grateful for Ryan's friends who have spent time with him at work or just living life
with him who have passed along stories and pictures of the kind of things in his life that a mom is not always aware of when you have a grown son.  I long to know any details (serious, happy, funny or just 
anecdotal).  I would appreciate any of it.  Especially any pictures you may want to share
on Facebook, text or email. 

I would ask for your continued prayers and thoughts as we try to navigate through this tragedy.

How are your husband, daughters and grandkids doing?

Mike has been my strength and comfort.  He spends every moment 
trying to make sure I'm okay and if there is anything he can do, he will.
He makes all the calls to handle all of the terrible things that have to be done 
when your child dies.

The girls are being extremely strong for me.   They handled welcoming
all the the family and friends and thanking them for coming to the services when I couldn't speak.
  I know it must of been so hard for them and I'm very proud of how strong they were.

Also I want to thank my parents for making the photo slide show to use at the services.  
 It has been hard on our immediate and extended family as we are close.  

Please include them in your prayers.

Especially my precious oldest granddaughter, Taylor who lost her
grandfather, father and now her uncle in the past several months.
Too much for her young heart.

How is his girlfriend and her son doing?

I'm sure they are heartbroken so please include them in your prayers.

You know it was God's will.

This may be helpful and comforting for some people but not for me.  I will 
not say anything to those who say it to me because I know it comes
from a place in their heart of trying to comfort me.  
I don't believe God wanted to take my son.  But I do believe that he knows our days before
we are born.  I am trying very hard to take comfort that he is in heaven and life is
perfect for him now but this is a very difficult thing for a mother's heart to take.
I miss him.
I am working on this and praying for God's comfort.

I don't know what to say to make you feel better.

I know you don't know what to say.  I never knew what to say when I was trying
to comfort someone who lost a loved one.  There is nothing you can say that will make
me feel better.  But just being there to pray for me and to tell me your thinking of me helps.

I hope this answers the questions that I seem to get the most of.  There have been
a couple of others but it includes other people or information I don't have at this point so it's
not my story to tell at this time.  


I am not sure if this post comes across as being harsh or angry because it is not meant to be
that way at all.  I just wanted to answer the questions I get most and I believe all 
questions and comments that have been asked are meant with the best intentions in their heart.
I'm just answering them as honest as I can.  It's just how I feel at this time. 

Thank you for all your kind words and all the help that everyone has given us.

I will be back soon with a post of what my son Ryan was all about and 
my plans to honor him in the future.  

As sure you will notice there is a underlying theme that what we need most is
lifting our family in prayer as God is the only answer.

Love You All

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