I haven't logged in since the post about the death in my immediate family and needing to do a cake for the memorial.
I just returned after a few weeks off to find my inbox slammed with messages. I am reading through them all and just don't have the time, or ability to reply to everyone yet individually so I wanted to just give a quick update.
In the end I didn't do a cake. I was just way to devastated. Every time I'd start it I'd just break down.
I didn't get more than a few hours of sleep each night for the better part of the month and the week we were preparing to leave I was just beyond to tired to sit and decorate to my standards.
There was also no "official" funeral home style gathering with a dinner after like originally discussed and it came down to the siblings, Aunts and cousins gathering in our own way to give our own private goodbye. It honestly was one of the best goodbye's I've ever had to give.
We gathered at a lodge in a town in Northern California. They had 5 of their 7 cabins still open from the summer season and rented them out to just our family at a 75% discount. They were fully furnished cabins as well all we had to provide was the food to cook.
The town population is about 300 to 350 with counting the summer only residents so when word got out that John's family were going to be in town for the weekend people flooded the lodge with calls to provide us meals and food. The out pouring of love was awesome.
Now for the pictures...
John lived along the Klamath river in Northern California. So we took a good part of Saturday morning with a couple of his friends who walked along the river with the 20 of us. They told of his favorite fishing spots, stories of his card games, and random stories of the times they shared.
This is a picture of his favorite fishing spot.
At one point along the river up on the bank was a cluster of grape vines and a little rickety frame of what once was probably a shelter of some sort.
We stopped for a photo op. The first picture is of my son and I. The second is of my husband, son, daughter and I. The last one is of my two children.
Saturday night we held the memorial with his girlfriend and immediate family at the property he was living at.
In this picture was where he would launch his raft from with his girlfriend and float down the river. This was also where we gathered to say goodbye.
This was the last picture taken after our goodbye and the sun set.
This was his view every morning as the sun came up
Now for some cuteness... my daughter didn't want to play with any of the playground toys, the awesome swing set they had there or anything else she wanted to play with the plastic yard bunny.
And to end it on a smile... this part kitten/part cat was the most awesome cat ever. Kaitlyn lugged that cat around like it was a stuffed animal and the cat just would go limp and allow for her to do it.
My son who had been terrified of cats up until meeting this cat was able to get over his fear of them and before long he was trying to make her share the cat with a 5 minute rotation. Both nights he cried if the cat was outside (it would sit and meow at our cabin sliding glass doors until we'd let him in). So we caved and let the cat in to sleep with the kids.
I wanted the cat to accidentally jump in the car as we were packing and go unnoticed until we got home but hubby was on to me and made sure the cat was out of the car before we pulled out. hahaha
All in all it was a good weekend we had for what we were there to do.
Upon returning home I just kind of holed up and focused on trying to get back to the land of living a new normal knowing John wasn't going to be in our lives in the living form and adjusted to him being gone. I pretty much stayed off the internet outside of Facebook so my extended family wouldn't overly worry about me/us.
He's been gone for 5 weeks and 3 days. I don't burst into tears now, it's settled into a dull heart ache when I think about him. It's not a path I would choose, but it's the path I am on and I'm going to walk it the best I can.
As for his friend who killed him. He's still in county jail as of tonight. He's got a million dollar bond and from what we can tell those that want to bond him out can't afford it, and those that can afford it don't want to bond him out. We are being given the impression by those in authority positions with the case that it appears he won't be seeing freedom before his trial and if that's the case it's highly likely he'll never see freedom again because they are looking at a minimum life without parole.
I will be able to forgive him one day, but that's not going to be today. I'm not to that point yet. Some day though I will because I need to for myself and forgiveness will come in due time.
With all this said, thank you to each of you who sent PM's over the last few weeks, thank you for the words of encouragement, thank you for the prayers, and thank you for everything else your PM's were about.
I'll get a more personal note to each of you as time permits and I can.
So to end this thesis... please go hug your spouse, children and family. Be thankful they are alive tonight.
Bless you heart! The forgiveness will help bring you peace. I hope it comes soon. God bless you and your family. You'll be in my prayers.
I'm so sorry for the pain you must be in. The pictures you posted are so beautiful. It looks so serene up there. Your children are just lovely.
As a cat lover I was hoping that cat would've jumped in the car but at least he helped your son get over his fear.
Carolyn, I'm so sorry. I had no idea anything had happened, but want to offer my condolences now. I hope someday you can find peace with all of this. God bless~~
Carolyn I don't remember reading your original post. Of course my 'sorry this has happened to you' is on my lips now. May God lead you in your mourning and into forgiveness.
........I don't burst into tears now, it's settled into a dull heart ache when I think about him. It's not a path I would choose, but it's the path I am on and I'm going to walk it the best I can.........I will be able to forgive him one day, but that's not going to be today. I'm not to that point yet. Some day though I will because I need to for myself and forgiveness will come in due time.........
I wanted to especially tell you you put into words what has been in my heart regarding my situation (my husband recently walked out on my after 49.5 yrs).
May we heal together.
Thank you for the beautiful picutres and sharing of the memories.
God bless you and yours so much.