Happy Birthday Jamie,
To say we miss you seems so trivial… I keep waiting for this “new normal” to happen that everyone says will happen. I’m not sure I really believe in that concept because our family is just NOT the same without you and dad and “Lily”.
I’m not sure I really believe in that concept because our family is just NOT the same without you and dad and “Lily”.
I think that is one of the hardest things for all of us, Christa, Matt, Andrew and Allyssa, is that the whole family being changed in such a short time has thrown us all off-balance.
It just doesn’t “feel” right, like being in a new family.
How is that normal?
All of us have grown closer if that was possible.
I have learned that everyone who is living will experience loss and suffering and only then do people understand grief. Recently, I was visiting someone in the hospital and got to chatting with a family who was standing outside. They were going to see their 80-year old mother who had just lost her son. She was the sister and it was her brother who had died. The mother just could not handle the grief so they had to admit her.
I understood, but many people would have not understood how a 80-year old mother could be in such crippling grief over the loss of her 62-year-old son.
The first year you went to heaven I was completely numb and in shock. When the numbness and shock wore off, I walked around dead or on auto-pilot. I did what I had to do, sold homes and read so many books on Heaven I could write one myself.
The second year I focused on writing your story to be able to help other families going through a traumatic situation. The book is finished and I am just waiting for a physician to finish editing the medical part. Working on the book and doing all the research allowed me to focus beyond my pain.
We are now in the third year and again I am going through ANOTHER transformation. In the book, You Can Heal Your Heart, by Louise Hay she says and I have found it to be profoundly true is that:
“Grief is the window that provides the opportunity to examine your primal thinking about relationships.”
When death invades a home, in the beginning friends, family, acquaintances rally around, bring food, text to check on you, call and do all the wonderful things to help you get through your loss. Then it stops, perhaps they think we are “over it” and we are “back to normal”.
Truthfully, what else could they do?
People have their own lives to live, with all of their own challenges. But we are still HERE facing the days and nights without you and dad and bear. Life for someone grieving can be a very dark, and lonely place. There have been so many times where I had to beg God to give me the love and forgiveness He has for them and to heal my heart from the disappointments.
The joy I get is when I am helping and advocating for others in worse situations than me. Children who have been ripped out of the arms of their loving parents due to the crisis in medical kidnapping; parents whose children are suffering from cancer. So heartbreaking and I can “feel” the pain and grief they are walking through.
So yes I am being shaken up on what is important in life and what does God want me to do to finish my race.
Celebrating Jamie Caulk
So here we are on your 31st birthday and even though you are not physically present you are still inspiring and motivating me to live life with a sensitivity to others. You were amazing at this and gifted in understanding when people were in pain.
One of the sweetest most inspiring letters we got about you was from this girl:
I guess five years ago or so I was at Starbucks completely utterly totally overwhelmed. I had been assaulted and had just found out that I was pregnant.
I had no clue what I was going to do. I went to Starbucks. And your brother was in line and he pulled me aside and asked if he could pray for me. He prayed for the life that was to be.
He prayed that I would have peace and that God’s grace and love would surround me. He looked at me and said “Be brave. God never gives us something we can’t handle. We serve a faithful and mighty God.”
I cried and cried to this complete stranger and poured my heart out of all the questions I had wondering where God was and how my plans had failed. And he looked at me without judgment and said “God’s plans are so much bigger than ours. You have to trust him. Your faith will get you through this!! Sometimes God has to take us through pain to get us back where we need to be. To make us remember that we are not in control and that He has this bigger and better plan than we could ever imagine.”
I cannot tell you what those words did for me. I now have a little girl and I cannot imagine my life without her. Never did I imagine my life like this but never would I change it.
I never got to thank your brother. He was a complete stranger to me and as far as I was concerned he was God’s messenger to me that day.
So even though I cannot thank him here on this earth I will get to thank him in eternity. And I wanted You to know how thankful I am for his life here on earth!!
Jesus says, in John 16:33 to “Be of good cheer”. The new house is nearly ready for you. Moving day is coming. The dark winter is about to be magically transformed into spring. One day soon you will be home—for the first time.
Meanwhile, we on this dying Earth can relax and rejoice for our loved ones who are in the presence of Christ. As the apostle Paul tells us, though we naturally grieve at losing loved ones, we are not “to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope” (1 Thessalonians 4:13). Our parting is not the end of our relationship, only an interruption. We have not “lost” them, because we know where they are. They are experiencing the joy of Christ’s presence in a place so wonderful that Christ called it Paradise. (excerpt from Randy Alcorn’s , book Heaven)
When I think of you which is every day, multiple times. I don’t look at the sky and clouds. I look around at our lake house, our home in Saline, the earth I am now living on and the places I visit. I KNOW that one day we will all be together on the New Earth without the curse of sin and death and without the suffering and corruption of our political systems.
I take the advice you gave the young lady as my own from you, “God’s plans are so much bigger than ours. You have to trust him. Your faith will get you through this!!
Mostly I long for never having to say, good-bye again.
Happy Birthday “Jamo-Pup”, I love you to the moon and back,