Friday, November 26, 2010

Give Thanks?

Well, Here we are, a few days after another holiday without you. Our hearts ache, our hearts have such a big hole in them. Its hard some days, its easier some days, but every single day we miss you so very very much. I know that life goes on, but we wish so much that you were still with us. I know that you are having such an unbelievable time. Me and mommy wish that we could fast forward through the holidays, but even doing that would not make the hurt go away. Sorry to seem kinda of down. Its just hard.

We went down to the deer woods for thanksgiving lunch with the family. It was tough driving by the cemetary. It just doesnt seem right that we pass by and your there (I know your not there there, but you know what I mean) and not with us. Then we finally get to deer camp and there is a story on tv about an football player who passed away and helped four or five different families through donating his organs. Oh Lei, I wish you would have been able to help some little kids. Seems like it would have made things a little more easier. It just wasnt apart of God's plan for some reason. I know that your time on earth was just right to fulfill Gods perfect will and plan. But it did not fill my wants and desires for you, for our family. Anyways, Mylea had fun until she burnt her hand on the stove. The ride home was NOT fun.
Mommy and aunt Charlene talked about you alot. Not that everybody doesnt miss you, but aunt Charlene was obviously hurting. I meant to tell you what an awesome poem she wrote about you. One the day you were born and another on the day that you went to be with Jesus. I will have to put them on here. Even though my whole family was there, my whole family wasnt there. Its not the same, it will never be the same untill we get to be with you again.

You would have loved last weekend. We went to see uncle We we, Wendy, Bonnie, Kelly, Case, Brannon, and Brayson (oh and I cant forget Mylea's boyfriend briiiiiaaaaaan). Its still wierd driving down th road with only ONE carseat with only ONE little girl. Mylea had so much fun. She was so wore out on the way home after spending the weekend palying with her cousins non stop. It was so good to see her play and have a ball like the two of you did. I try to make it a point and play with her more, she loves playing doctor and giving me shots. Remeber when you used to wear those rubber gloves and take My's temperature? You two were too funny. Your sister has a little attidue sometimes, that I dont remember you having. It makes me miss you so much when she will have nothing to do with me or tells me to "GO AWAY". You were always so lovey and I could always count on a big Leightyn hug! They were the best and I miss them.

GUESS WHAT??? I heard you on the radio twice yesterday. They played the song that you recorded last year, Hark the Harold, and me and mommy got to talk a little bit about you. We never could get you to say mercy mild, you always sang it mercy morrow for some reason. There is some how a difference between saying mild and singing it I guess. My was singing Jingle Bells in the truck on the way to Hon, you would have been so pround of her. She is getting to where she knows alot of songs, and I cant help but to remember when me and mommys hearts would melt listening to you sing along with the radio. I loved listening to you sing and should have played the songs you wanted more. We want to do every thing we can to let people know about your life and our story. I know we have told you before, but you wouldnt believe all of the lives that you have touched, and I dont think we can even begin to know.

I find my self always wandering, always thinking. I see your pictures and wander when and how your sickness started. I was watching Disney home videos with Mylea and thinking. I wish I would have know you were only going to be with us a few more months. But then again do I really? There are many things I could have done different, I would have done different, but I couldnt have loved you anymore. Its funny how Mylea sounds so much like you sometimes. She says luB you, just like you use to. I am glad that we get to see so much of you in her.

Thanksgiving, or better yet, Giving thanks. How can we possibly give thanks during this time of year, when its so hard because you are not here with us? Just as God gave (and continues to give) us the strength to move through this storm that we prasie Him in, we use that same strength to help us see how blessed we are. First and foremost for Jesus Christ, for salvation, for eternity, for peace, and hope that we WILL see you again one day. For your life, for the honor and privilage that we had to watch over, raise and love you for five short years. For your legacy and God using your beautiful life for His glory. For family, I dont know where I would be without family, your mommy, little sister and YOU. For our church family, Bro. Mike and the rest of our friends who continue to pray for us. I thank God for who He is and Jesus for what He did.

Love you Lei

Friday, November 12, 2010

To My Precious First Born,

Here we are, three months since you have been with us. My emotions are all over the place lately. I love to talk about you and think about what it would be like to have you with us still. I find myself happy, and then sad, and then ok, and then crying. It's amazing how my emotions can change in a split second.I find myself crying at any and all things. I guess that reality is here and I now realize that you will not be walking in the front door.

Today, Jo and I were at the mall and I couldn't help but wonder if you would still be the same girly girl or if your choice of clothes would have changed when you made friends at school. Speaking of clothes, I packed up part of your closet the other day. You know how it is, the weather changes and the tubs come out of the attic so we can save them for Mylea. I left your untouched school clothes, your favorite dresses, and your beautiful black coat out. It just doesn't seem like the right time to put it all away. When I look at your school clothes, it brings me to tears. I can't help but wonder how you would have loved school and all the stories you would have to share. You were so excited to finally be going to school.

So much has gone on since you left us. We have lost two more family members, your Papaw got hurt at work, and your Uncle WeWe's house burned down. It seems like it is something all the time. I remember WeWe calling me when he first found out about his house. He was so upset about the pictures and cards you had mailed him over the years. Don't worry, I have promised to send him more artwork, schoolwork, and photos once they get in a new house. Your daddy and I can't wait to go visit them for a few days. We have this bond that no one understands. Well, we were close before but Uncle WeWe understands us. How odd is it that his daughter died exactly ten years before you. August 7th is kinda a crazy day! Have you met WeWe's daughter Trina? Does she remind you of Madison? You sure loved Madsion. And she was crazy about you.....just a little:).

Speaking of meeting people, have you met Ms "Carolwin's" grandbabies? They went to see Jesus last week. I know how much you loved Ms Carolwin and how much you loved babies, so I am sure that you are taking care of them and showing them around.

Your daddy and I went to preview your monument before the final wording is finished. I think it is beautiful. It made the past three months seem more real. Seeing your picture on it, with your birth date and your death date took the breath out of me. Mylea went with us and loved your picture. She kept saying that her "sissy is gonna love it".

We met with your sweet Dr a few weeks ago. We went over every thing in your file and looked at all your scans from Children's. Daddy and I just needed closure to a few answers. We got a general idea on the type of tumor. But more importantly, I got to hear over and over that you didn't hurt. I keep replaying your last night over and over in my head. You were perfectly fine when you went to sleep. When you woke up, you needed to throw up and then went quickly back to sleep. You mentioned your head hurting and took some medicine but that was it. I just keep thinking that we could of and should of done something. The next morning when I tried to wake you, you looked up and put your head back down and went back to sleep. I wonder if you were trying to tell me something but you couldn't. It blows my mind how you went from fine to gone in a matter of minutes. Oh Lei, I just wish we could have done something! It just doesn't make sense. Your sweet life over just like that.

Back to the Dr., she told us over and over that you didn't hurt. The tumor somehow shifted causing a lack of oxygen and blood flow. I hope so bad that you weren't hurting or scared. I can't imagine how scared you must of been. With the type of tumor, there was nothing that we could have done if we would have discovered it sooner. There's no cure and it's location was in a tricky and dangerous spot. It just makes me sick! We asked if we should be worried about Mylea and were told that there is no reason to be. Thank You Jesus! I can't imagine just waiting and wondering if Mylea has the same gene.

This past Wednesday was a special night in Awanas. The clubber of the month in each class was announced. Bro Dale has renamed this award to the "Lei Lei award". How cool is that! Bro Dale asked me to be in the gym to present this award. I was a-ok until the pledges started.Then.... I lost it! I kept thinking that you should be here. I kept thinking about how much you loved being at church and in Awanas. I thought about you teaching Mylea to say the pledge. I thought about how you made up your own pledges when you couldn't remember the words. Somehow, all three pledges turned in to one pledge. Bro Dale told the kids about the new award and it really hit home. There should not be an award in your name because you should be here to get the award. I am so thankful that they are doing this award in your honor but still it's tough.

It's that time of the year......holidays! How do I feel about it? I'm not sure. The thought of doing the whole holiday thing without you... makes me want to puke. Getting to see the holidays through Mylea's eyes....brings a smile to my face. You loved decorating the house, and now Mylea can't wait for her tree. Daddy and I have decided that we are only going to do what we can handle. The house will be decorated for Mylea to enjoy. We will travel and put a smile on our faces....but it's gonna stink! It would be ok with Daddy and I if we could just skip on the January 1st.

The mall is all decorated for Christmas. Tonight is Santa's big arrival. You and Mylea had fun at Santa's arrival last year with Logan and Laney. This year, Mylea is down right scared of Santa.....up until last year, you would have nothing to do with Santa. I remember you telling me that you wanted to go see Santa and I was thinking "yeah right". When we arrived at his chair, you walked right up to him and sat on his lap. When you were finished talking, you came right over to me and said "see, I'm not scared anymore, like I was when I was three". It was amazing how turning four changed you. I can't remember how many times I heard "like when I was three" or "well, I'm four now".

You would be so proud of the little sweetheart that Mylea has become! She reminds me of you in so many ways. Her mannerisms and sweetness have you written all over them. She is so polite and loving and still funny as ever. Yesterday in the car, she told me that she didn't love me but it's ok cause she "likes me"! Where does she come up with this? While carving pumpkins, she leaned over and said "I have the best family in the whole wide world". If that doesn't sound like my Leightyn Nan, then I don't know what would! This morning at playgroup, she pulled my photo album out of my purse and proudly walked around showing her friends pictures of you.

Lei Babe, I have to share this email with you. I received flowers from a cool momma named "J". When I sent her a thank you, this was "J's" response......

You have no need to thank us and know that you can expect it because I not only think of your family on the 7th of every month but every day. Let me tell you why. For years I have been trying to make some name for myself in my job and thats what it is a job. I have always thought that the more that my kids have the happier they will be. I have told you before that Lei has changed my life, our life but I don't believe I have made that clear. I am sitting here after a long horrible week at work and my son had a reprimand on the bus and my daughter doesn't want to go to sleep and stay asleep so I am up at 11pm when I have to be up at 5am. Normally I would be very upset as I'm sure you know. Now not so much now. I sit here and thank God I have my son to be upset with and my daughter to be up with. I think about Lei every time I discipline and love and wonder if it is something I would regret tomorrow. I have always thought of myself as to busy to enroll them in things that they would like or want because I'm busy and tired. I don't anymore. "K" is getting ready to go to dance classes and "K" karate. I know that nothing will make Lei come back nor the hurt go away but I thank that little angel every day for making me a better mother! My kids deserved a mom and I wasn't giving that to them. This is something that I have never admitted to anyone. I now know that is the most important thing they can ever have. You write letters to her, so next time will you tell her thank you for making me a better Mom?
I could keep going on but I wont keep you. Give Mylee kisses for us and tell Landon that we are Making time to Make Memories! "T" and I love all four of you and think of you every day. Cant wait till we can spend time together.

Oh Lei, look at the impact that your little life has made! I get emails and notes every week people telling me how you have changed them! Daddy and I are working on an idea to keep your impact going. I can't wait to share it with you, if God allows.

I think that's all my thoughts for tonight! I love you and miss your little smirks so much! Thank you for being mine!


Friday, November 5, 2010

Little Stinker!!!!

Oh Lei Lei.....

What a little stinker you are!!!!!

Do you remember your last trip to Chuck E Cheese?
That would be the trip where you had fun teasing Mylea that "ChuckE was going to get her" or " comes ChuckE". Today, Jo took Mylea to Chuck E Cheese while I went to the eye Dr. Well....Guess what! Mylea was terrified the entire time that ChuckE was going to get her! Mylea was so concerned about ChuckE that she only played a few games. When she left, she kept asking if ChuckE was in the parking lot, if that was ChuckE's truck, and if ChuckE was going to follow her home.......You little stinker!!!!!

This afternoon, Mylea and I were watching home videos. Mylea absolutely loves the video of you two on the plane and shuttle bus heading to Disney. At one point in the video, you are making silly faces at the camera. Whenever this part comes on, Mylea makes the exact same silly faces. She then laughs and laughs at her silly sissy.

We also watched Mylea's 2nd birthday party this afternoon. I cracked up laughing when I saw you being a stinker! Mylea is opening presents and you are standing next to the cake. You quickly look at me and then daddy. When you realize that we are watching Mylea, you run your finger through the icing. Then you look back at me and daddy. Trying to be sneaky, you quickly lick your finger clean. This process goes on three times. On the third time, WeWe catches you with your finger in the cake. You very quickly flash a goofy smile while looking like a deer caught in the headlights. When WeWe walks off, you stick your finger back in the icing and then walk off to eat it. A few seconds later, you walk back by the cake, get some icing, and quickly walk little stinker!!!!

I love these funny memories! Nothing like a good laugh over ChuckE, your silly faces, and you stealing icing!

Love ya!

Monday, November 1, 2010

I Wonder.....?

I wonder what you spend your time doing? Do you and Grandma Nancy, Grannie Holmes, Nanny, Poppa, Trina all hang out together all day long? What was it like to meet your family members for the first time? I know that you know them, but do you know them as your family? Probably not, since in all reality everyone is brothers and sisters in heaven. I wish I could have seen the crowd that greeted you at the gates. I wish I could have seen your face when you finally got to meet Jesus. I can just picture you running into His arms as fast as your little legs could take you. Maybe you can replay that for me some day.

Speaking of Jesus, I am sorry that I didn’t take the time to explain things to you better. I am sure there were MANY opportunities that I missed or passed up and I am so very sorry. I really did enjoy the time we all had together doing bible stories. I miss all of your questions. You certainly had some difficult ones that stumped me and mommy both. I should have been better, I should have done more. Mylea just isn’t into the stories like you were. We did read the story about Jacob and Esau giving away his birthright for some soup, and she actually got some questions right. I am going to do better with Mylea.

I wonder if you think about me and mommy and sissy as much as we think about you. Do you get to check on us from time to time and see how we are doing, especially in moments that you would love, such as last night on Halloween. Mylea did an awesome job filling in your footsteps of passing out candy to all of the trick or treaters. It took me back to the exact moment a year ago. When the door bell rang, you would run to the door to see all of the different costumes and hand out the candy. Me and mommy went to get Mylea some costumes for dress up today that were on clearance. She does so well at playing by herself. It’s hard to watch, but it's good, if that makes any sense. Oh yeah, mommy made an angel pumpkin for you, and I will let her tell you what mylea told us when we finished carving pumpkins. It was so precious. I’m sure you are so busy with so many amazing things that you dont have much time to think of us.

I wonder how much better I could have been as a father? I’m sorry that I didn’t take more time to make memories with you. I know we had our moments and we had some good times, but there should have been so much more. Some of the most precious moments that I cherish is when you would be sitting in my lap in the chair. I would say “I Love you Lei” and you would say “I luv you too”. I would say “Lei, look at me” Then you would look me straight in my eyes and I would say “you know daddy loves you so much” and you would say “yeah, I know!” I thank God for those moments, but I could have…. I SHOULD have been better at making more memories.

I just wanted to say that I am sorry for when I punished you. Not that you didn’t need discipline, but for the times when I punished you out of anger. That was so wrong of me and I think (I Hope) I am doing better with Mylea. I remember one time when we were walking to the mommy’s car after a t-ball game and you asked a question and we both told you no and then you got upset, and I swatted your bottom as you were taking a step and I made you fall down. Then I got mad because I made you fall. It was all my fault. I failed in so many ways as a father and I still do. I am trying to do better, and I am sorry I wasn’t better for you. I'm sorry it took your home-going for me to see how much I needed to improve.

I wonder if you even get these letters we send for you? I wonder if you are counting down the days till we meet again? I wonder if God gives you the hugs like I ask Him to give you from us? I could go on and on. There are days when I fight back tears all day long. There are days when I cry like a baby. There are days when I want to see what the rest of this life holds for me, mommy, mylea, and any future "brudders" or sisters. Then there are days when I wish I was with you. However, just like with you, its ALL a part of Gods will and His perfect timing. So, I will continue to follow, serve, love God, and seek His perfect will while I am left here.

I would guess that there are not many fathers who read this blog. If there are, or any moms who would like to pass this along, or even for mom's that matter. I would beg you ...... Take time to make memories. I regret the times I passed up on making memories with Lei. I was "too busy". Yeah, really, too busy? If you call facebook, tv, or just plane laziness (among many other excuses) being to busy. Get angry less, Love more, and ....... MAKE time to MAKE memories.

Love you so much Lei.