The 4th of July holiday has come and gone and we celebrated it in the usual way surrounded by family and friends at Norway Lake. As usual there was lots of laughter and lots of food (too much food) and we caught up on the latest news. There was something a bit different this year as our neighbors at the lake were missing their husband and father who suddenly passed away from heart failure the week prior. So we each have our losses and just like we did last year at our first 4th celebration without Stephen Reynolds they had their first 4th without Larry.
On Friday July 5th we went to see the Long Island Medium from the TLC show, Theresa Caputo. She put on a great experience for all those in attendance. Although we did not hear anything from Stephen that night we experience signs of his presence all the time. We just figured he was not going to talk to Theresa in front of all those people. :) We know he is with us and watches over us.
Every day we all put on a courage's face, and some days we do a better job of hiding our emotions than others but this is now a lifelong journey that we walk on. Our friends and family have been so supportive of us as well as 100's of others in our life. We are so thankful to everyone who walks beside us in our journey, they walk along with us with love and support in their hearts. They wear their Renny's Way bracelets they wear the Renny 7 t shirts. We cannot express our eternal gratitude in words alone, just know we are humbled and appreciative.
I have lost a father but no loss is as great as the loss of a child, and we grieve with others who have experienced this loss with us. We all try to live a normal life as it was before our child passed, but we quickly realize won't ever be our life again. It is different now, and we are still trying to figure out what our new normal is or will be. We still enjoy the company of our friends and love when they get us out of the house, we are still the same people.
It is funny for those that have not experienced a deep loss on how they cannot grasp the fact that when you grieve or mourn you have good days and bad days. Time does not completely heal this void in our lives, what time does do, it takes our memories from directly in front of us to our periphery. It is still there but now is on the side, so we can live a close to normal life. Most everyone in our lives understands this and supports us with as I mentioned before so much love and kindness. However, sometimes you come across individuals that do not quite grasp the fact that grief is not a checklist and once you have checked the boxes, you are not done. It does not matter if it is the loss of a son for Darla and I, a loss of a grandchild for our parents, a loss of someone that you treated as your son to our close friends, or a loss of a brother to Anthony and Alex. The hurt and pain is there for a lifetime. So when you tell someone who has lost a dear loved one to "Get Over It" realize what you are saying. You think it is a checklist, and I ask you what is the amount of time I get to grieve? A month, 6 months, a year, what is the time? I don't want people like that in my life or my families life. If that is they way you think and live your life I pity the people that you hold dear to you knowing that someday you will just get over it. I believe the day you find yourself in a situation of loss you will realize how damn shallow and vain you really are and you will choke on your words. Shame on you!
But one bad apple does not spoil a lot and in 18 months since Stephen as passed this is the only time a member of our family has had to deal with a situation like this.
God bless all of you and again thank you for all the love and support!