Friday, May 20, 2011

Fairy tales...

Dear Sara,

I've been traveling a lot lately. It gives me plenty of time to think and process. For some reason the whole concept of fairy tales popped into my mind the other day. They're so happy...but I think that's because all we get to read is the beginning. They all end with, "and they lived happily ever after."

The fairy tale doesn't have the chapter where you sit in a broken van and watch the life draining from your wife's face, feeling helpless and scared. It doesn't have the chapter where you hold your daughter to your chest and wait...and her heart beats its final beats. No one would want to read the fairy tale where we really got to see what happens later on. If feels like our fairy tale ended with, "and they lived happily, until the end."

The hard part about losing you this way is that there was no time to say goodbye. I feel horrible about it, but I'm sometimes jealous of people who lose their loved ones after a long battle with an illness. They sometimes get months, or years, to say goodbye. I don't think that would make it hurt any less, but I do wonder if it "mutes" the pain of loss due to stretching the goodbye out over time. I guess I don't know, and I don't really want to test my hypothesis.

I think about things I would have wanted to say to you, if there had been time. I'd want to thank you for the "fairy tale." For showing me that true love does exist, and that it is simple and pure, not complex and chemical. As I travel I have time to think about what that means for my life. I'd want to thank you for showing me that marriage is good, wonderful, full of wonder and adventure, and something that SHOULD be pursued, not given up on. I'd want to thank you for making marriage something that I want to experience and share again with someone else, using the template and skills created and learned over 15 years. Thank you for that life gift.

I feel like I'm moving into the final, but longest stage of grief. The one that lasts the rest of my life. I've just recently started to have "moments" when a normal, everyday event sparks the memory of you, and Miranda, and brings soft tears to my eyes. It usually passes within in minute or two, and often ends with a happy smile of remembrance on my face. I have come to accept that my love for you has reached its peak (but what a peak it was) and will grow no more; but, it will also never shrink. It's in stasis, unchanged until the day when the Lord calls me home to join you, and all those who have gone before.

I love you. I miss you. Give Miranda a kiss from daddy.



  1. You always say things so eloquently....

  2. Speechless..........praying continues

  3. I'm so thrilled to read that the prospect of marriage is something you'd do again. That's been my prayer for you, that you'd know there's more for you. What a wonderful life-lesson Sara gave you. You are thought of and prayed for (as is Sara and Miranda).

  4. What a great post. You're amazing. Glad to hear you're doing well.

  5. Chad,
    I really believe this post is one of your best. There is no fairy tales in a real relationship and from experience I can tell you the " long goodbye" isnt as easy as you think. You lost Sara and Miranda in such a cruel way, there wasnt time for goodbye, and thats gut wrenching to the survivers I think. You were so lucky to have had such a loving relationship and being a parent really has complamented both of you.
    Time will help ease the pain, life goes on, you stay busy, you love what was and enjoy what she left you in this world.
    Some days I wish you didnt have to go threw all this pain, but God walks with us, and Chad, you are what you are today because of the love you and Sara shared, count your blessing. Some people never achieve what you had.
    I continue to keep reading your blog, it humbles me and makes me a little softer and kinder. God be with you..
    Have you considered planting a tree in your yard in memory of Sara and Miranda? Dwarf fruit trees are a great one to plant.
    Be safe, be well. I admire your strengh

  6. Chad, I admire you. For the man, husband, and father you are. Your posts are real. Emotion felt. Honest.

    Prayers continue for your healing. God Bless.

  7. God bless, Chad. I was thinking of all of you on Mother's Day and knew it might be hard. Hope you will remember that lots of folks pray for you. The dream you had and the memories are all precious gifts, and we still, if we want, can have that spiritual connection to the souls of our loved ones. I truly believe Sara and Miranda are watching over and loving you from where they are, and will keep doing so. Peace to you always.

  8. Chad, this was just a breathtaking post. :o) You really do sound like you are doing very well for all that you have been through.

    It's still been such a short amount of time, you are more than okay to grieve until you meet Jesus. You are right...I think the final chapter of grief is just what you wrote: it never ends. But you do learn to have more lapses of time in a day, week etc. where you don't cry ALL of the time.

    God bless you!

  9. Chad, my grandma died about 8 1/2 years ago at the age of 66. This mothers day was very hard on my mom. She hasn't cried in a long time and then she saw a bouquet of roses with a "happy mother day" balloon attached and it broke her heart that she had no one to send flowers to on mother day and it made her realize how much she still missed grandma. Even after 8 1/2 years her heart has not healed. We have all gone on with our lives, but she is still there. I remember grandma every time I sit down at my piano, she loved the piano and encouraged mom to get me into lessons at a young age. It's a part of her that I carry with me always, but in a happy and warm way. You will find your happy Sara and Miranda place that brings happiness to your heart. Always in my prayers.

  10. Dear Chad: You are truly an amzing person. I pray for you and your little family each nite andthat you will find peace and happiness again. Nina

  11. Dear Chad,
    You write so well...saying things in such a deep and meaningful way. I follow your writings and with each one I shed tears. I continue to pray for your healing process. I'm so glad that you have wonderful memories of your marriage to Sarah.
    God bless you.
    Ruth Knights

  12. Dearest Chad, Today I had some of my young english students come into my office and they quickly noticed the photos that I have on my bulletin board: your beautiful wife, you holding your darling baby girl...and of course ALL the questions of Who? Why? When? Where? "But Why Teacher? " How do you explain to little children the word "loss". I tried my best to explain to them( in little-people's language)about your story. Their little faces were sad this afternoon. You are always a prayer, a thought in my daily life

  13. Dear Chad,

    When my first son passed away, it was suddenly, during full term labor, pinching the cord, in a moment, he was gone. I was in shock and sometimes, even 8 years later, I feel I still am. Little did I know, 3 years later I would find out in the 23rd week into my pregnancy with my second son, that he had a fatal chromosomal abnormality called Trisomy 18. I had a choice to end the pregnancy, or carry him full term if God allowed. I spent the next 15 weeks carrying him, knowing he most likely would die in my womb or shortly after birth. I spent that time preparing in every way I knew how, already having been through loss. But, when it came to the time of death at 2 days old, it was just as hard, if not worse than with my first son. The fairy tale ending didn't happen for me either, although, I did not experience losing a spouse as you have. My sons deaths taught me not to ever take for granted a moment with those I love. I tell them how much they mean to me, hug them, spend time with them...although the life lessons have come at a high price.

    The only thing we can take with us to Heaven and eternity, are people. Everything else on this Earth is just not as important.

    Thank you for sharing so honestly. I truly appreciate your blogs. May God continue to reveal His love as He carries you through this journey...


  14. Chad,
    Thank you for continuing to write. I am so sorry for all you are going through, but so happy to hear of the love you shared with Sara. Few people ever reach that level of love that you write about. I think about you and your girls daily and pray for you often.

  15. Chad,
    I heard about your story right after the accident when someone posted it as a prayer request on a totally unrelated Facebook group that I was following. I mourned for you for many days after that, even breaking down crying during worship one Sunday as I felt the weight of your suffering on my heart. I tried to remember to keep up with your blog, but I think it was down, or blocked, or something for several days, so I just assumed that you had closed it to the general public and I stopped checking for updates. But God wouldn't let me forget you. Every now and then He would put you directly on my heart and I would think, "I need to check his blog when I get home to see if he's still writing." But by the time I'd get home I would already be thinking about what to fix for dinner or what we needed from the store, etc. Then tonight, the Spirit once again put you on my heart and urged me to find your blog again. I found it and for about the past 2 hours my heart has been groaning and grieving for you before the Father as I've read your posts from the last 3 months. It's crazy how deeply I feel your loss because I don't know you at all... I don't even know someone who knows you. Nor have I suffered the tragic loss of someone I love. And yet my soul groans for you before the Father in a language that is beyond words. There are no words, my friend, and there is nothing I can do to lift this burden from your life. But I hope that somehow, across the many miles that separate us, I can be among those that bear the burden with you so that the full weight of it isn't yours alone to carry.

    Tonight I am earnestly asking God to comfort you, knowing that His comfort reaches to the depths. And I'm asking that, in His mercy, He will send a rainbow to you as a reminder of His promise. "Rainbows are made of sunshine and rain" (Elizabeth Elliot).

    You are not alone as you walk this road.

    Atlanta, GA

  16. wow. This one took me aback. Your words are powerful and poignant. I hope you keep sharing your thoughts with us. They humble me.

  17. God created a good man in you! (HUGS)

  18. Chad;
    As "Jacqueline" said in the first post, and I don't think I can say it any better ...........
    "You always say things so eloquently".
    I still check your Blog since hearing about your tragedy on the VR site.
    I'd love to meet up with you some day! God Bless!
    My thoughts and prayers are still with you.


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