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10 Years Without T.J.

Today marks 10 years since T.J. took his life on a cold, dark December evening.

10 years. . .a decade.

The dictionary defines a decade as any ten-year period, such as those of a person's life, or to refer to specific groupings of calendar years. Never did I think I’d use the term decade to define how long one of my children was gone from this earth. That is one of the conundrums of life. We really have no idea what the future may hold and what we can endure. I have learned so much about myself these past 10 years. One of the most significant is that I have within me more strength and faith than I ever imagined and I understand the bedrock of that strength and faith is all the LOVE I have been blessed with throughout my life—especially in the darkest of times. That LOVE is what I have tapped into every day for the past 3,650 days—the number of days in a decade, the number of days T.J. has been gone. And I am grateful to every single person who has crossed my path during these 3,650 days to lift my family and I up with love, support and kindness. If you are reading this, no doubt you are one of those people. No action was too small, every kind word, thought or deed was noticed and appreciated more than you could ever know.

There is a quote: “They say you die twice. Once when you stop breathing and then again when someone utters your name for the last time.” It is my life’s mission that T.J. never dies twice. I will continue to say his name daily, as I have for the past decade and to share his gift for living life to the fullest and honoring his essence which was exuberant and endlessly loving. While I can’t control eternity, as long as I live there will never come a time when T.J.’s name is uttered for the last time. I love you T.J. and boy do I miss you!

Sending out a decade’s worth of T.J. hugs


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