May 18, 2010

I STILL REMEMBER!!!!







Good afternoon on this May 18th.....I'm going to share a piece of my heart with you this afternoon....A part I don't share with too many people.....

In my hallway on my peg rail I have a simple sampler I'm asked about often....It has the initials JLT as mine as being the stitcher, and then it has the initials MCS for Michael Christopher Smith....Born 1968...Died 1981....A short life lived....I don't remember who the designer of the sampler is because it has been many years since I stitched it......

I don't know why God brings certain people into our lives, but I know it is for a purpose...And I've asked myself many times "why"??...But I'm forever changed and blessed for having known Mike....

You see, Mike was the popular boy...Good looks, excellent at sports, and all the girls liked him....But for some reason I caught his eye back in 1981....I was 14... He was 12....I was the envy of all the girls....And Mike became MY boyfriend...LOL


Then, on May 18th....We had really bad storms all day..You know the kind that it is just like night time outside all day...My mind takes me back to that day every year as I remember....A phone call after school...Baseball games were still on for that night even though the weather had been bad..."I'm going fishing for a while"...But "I'll see you tonight at your brother's ballgame"....Then he said "I love you" and he was gone....Later at the ballgame I waited and waited, but Mike never showed up....They came....Word spread fast...Mike was gone...There had been an accident and he had fallen in...They speculated that the current from the storms were too hard even though he knew how to swim...MY Mike was gone!!...And my heart broke into a million pieces....


Days of mourning, a funeral, trying to get through final exams....It had only been a week before summer vacation....My life ceased to exist as I it had ever been....I was forever changed...My friends and Mike's friends rallied around me as  shield of protection to help me cope....


So I wrote.....I have a thick 3 inch notebook that is full of memories....A diary of the first time I saw him...How he looked at me...How he smiled at me through his bangs hanging in his eyes....How he'd sing to me in every phone conversation.....I wrote every expression and conversation I could remember up until a point that I didn't need to write as much anymore over a period of several years later...Friends wrote about their memories of each moment that they were there around us,what they heard, what Mike said about me in conversations with them,
and I compiled it into a book.....I still have that book that I can sit down and read and go back in time....When Taylor was 16, I let her read it...She had been begging for several years to....I wanted her to know her mother's heart as a girl....And she laughed and cried throughout it...


So these pictures, my locket, and this book is all that is left from that time in my life.....And I remember him every year on this day....I promised I always would...And even though my adult heart belongs to Tim and our family there are tears in my heart that can never be repaired...Tears that take me back to that time....


And to this day whenever I go home to Middle Tennessee....Home to Smyrna...I ALWAYS go to visit him....I take red roses and I remember him....And Tim goes with me....He always has! Even when we were dating and I'd go home to visit...I always went to the cemetary....He has always been respectful of my feelings and I'm forever greatful for that.....

My heart knows that  my God takes away, but he always gives back.....Twenty five years later, my due date for my son was the day before Mike's birthday....No one can convince me that that was a coincidence....And even though Luke was induced and born on the 13th instead....I know it was sign from God telling me...."Here's my gift back to you".... 

And becoming a mother helped me to know the depth of the pain his mom felt and I'm sure feels to this day......I think of her often..I wish I had kept in touch, but as I got older and went on with my life I didn't call as much as I did for several years after....I saw her my last day before taking a trip to Georgia my senior year..She was getting remarried..And then I learned several years later that she had moved to Florida....I will always regret I didn't find out her new married name and keep in touch...She was always so sweet to me and would check in on me after Mike's death....


So on this day I want to share my sampler that so many have asked about and my pictures....His school year picture....The picture of him I have in a locket on my charm necklace....His baseball picture taken just weeks before....And his All-Star basketball pictures taken from the newspaper....

So as I gently tuck my book of memories and pictures back into my grandmother's old trunk I want to end by saying......

"Thank you LORD for bringing him into my life.... Keep him close to your side til I see him again someday....Kiss his cheek and tell him for me that he's not forgotten... "I still remember!!!"


Until next time~~hugs, Jen

47 comments:

simple~needs said...

oh jen, you made me cry.
i know those feelings all too well. my first love died too, only i was 20. i thought my heart stopped beating when i was told.it was like a bad nightmare and i couldnt wake up. i live near the cemetary where he is buried, on a Fall day when the leaves are gone i can see the plot from my door.
many hugs to you, kim

primitivebettys said...

That is so very touching... brings tears to my eyes & warms my heart. Thank you for sharing.

Blessings...

Betty

Carmen at Primcatshouse said...

Hugs to you ((((Jen)))) I feel your pain. I have a very similar story of my first love, Sean. Gone to young from a tragic car accident but he will hold a special untouchable place in my heart forever. ♥

Carmen

WoolenSails said...

No, I am not going to cry;)
What a loving tribute, to someone who was special in your life.

Debbie

Farm Field Primitives said...

What a beautiful tribute to someone so close to you. We will never understand why things happen as they do, we just have to trust. Like you said, you have received so many blessings since. Take care and thank you for sharing such a personal story.
~Melissa~

darlarauch said...

Jen,
As I sit here in tears I am thinking of you, his mom and dad, and all his friends,thank you for sharing your story with us, god bless you and I am sending you big warm hugs today,
Darla

Holli~Where The Rooster Crows said...

Thank you for sharing that wonderful tribute. Hugs!

~Judy~ said...

So sad and so young! You never forget your first love.

hugs, Judy

Dan said...

Jen~

Thank you for sharing this with all of us. How wonderful that you have kept his memory alive all this time.

~Dan~

Erin @ I Heart New England said...

What a heartbreaking story... I can't imagine the horror you and his family must have went through. Thank you so much for sharing this with us. Many, many hugs ♥

Linda said...

Oh, Jen......thank you for sharing this story...........a very touching tribute to someone very special to you. And your Tim sounds like a very special man.
Linda/simplycountryseasons

PrimWyoGirl said...

Very touching! I am sure it took alot to share that story! This kind of reminds me of the Bridges of Madison County in the respect that it was so special and then ended, yet you have the memories and pieces to share with your daughter later. Definately brought tears to my eyes! I think it is great that you hold on to those memories! TFS! I love the stitchery by the way!
Hugs, Jayne

Dora said...

Jen,
Thanks for sharing this touching story. How wonderful that you have kept his memory alive in many ways.

macbasketspa said...

jen, You have touched my heart with this lovely tribute. It is wonderful that you have kept him special in your life. Your husband is an amazing man to understand your feelings. I am sending warm hugs to you today. You are truly deserving of all of the blessings God has given you.......Maureen

Karen ~ Life In A Primitive English Cottage said...

It is always so sad when one so young is taken, but such a wonderful tribute. My thoughts are with you.
Karen

The Crafty Crow said...

Hugs, what a touching memory, and how special it is to have your family support and live this memory with you, that is rare, something definitely to to cherished. He will always live in your heart.
Blessings,
~Ronda~

Gettysburg Homestead said...

What an awesome tribute!

Mary

~ Stitchin Sweet Sue ~ said...

Such a lovely tribute, TFS...

lakeffect said...

A beautiful tribute, Jen. He was a special guy, and lucky to have special you in his short life.

Beckyjean said...

Jen~

What a wonderful tribute. Thanks for sharing.

Hugs~Becky

basketsnprims said...

Jen,
Such a beautiful sampler and such a tragic story. It's wonderful how you have kept his memory alive and that Tim goes with you every year.
thanks for sharing such a sweet tender story.
hugs,
Pam

Homestead Wares said...

awwww I absolutely LOVED that...brought too many tears...love the first picture but the 2nd one is the picture I remember..

I know I was just 7 BUT I remember when I found out...we were at the ball field watching Robbie play ball and some kids where sitting on the bleachers talking about it...I thought..NO WAY...they must be talking about someone else...I also remember laying in the bed that night and hearing you talking to mama and crying...that was a tough time for you...but atleast now you can think back on him and smile even though the pain is still there...after all these years it's not something you will ever trully get over...

BUT on a happier not...EVERYONE should know that my sister ALWAYS dated someone younger than her...LOL

Diva Kreszl said...

Jen, thank you so much for sharing this beautiful memory with us. What a gift that you came to know love so young and while you also came to know loss at that very same age I believe that God brought you too together for a very special purpose. How comforting to know his last thoughts were of the love you shared.

Susannah said...

Jen....I am so overwrought with sadness for you and his family. What a terrible thing to happen.

Thinking of you in prayer....
Susannah

Karen/My Colonial Home said...

Well my dear girl you have me crying...but in a very heartwarming way.

Your story is touching many hearts. some can relate and some can only say OH HOW SAD AND SUCH A HORRIBLE ENDING TO A YOUNG LIFE.

You have delt with this in such a wonderful honorable way in his memory and I think it's such a terriffic acclimation of Tims love for you that he supports your memory.

Big hugs and thank you dear girlfriend for sharing your most deepest and precious private memories.

Karen

tegdirb92 said...

beautiful...thank you so much for sharing that.

Patti said...

Jen-what a wonderful tribute to your dear friend.....brought many, many tears through my eyes...

Linda* ~ TheKeepingroom said...

Oh Jen,
This post touched my heart and made me cry.
Thank you for sharing.
Blessings,
Linda*

colonialhomestead said...

Tears fill my eyes as I am at a loss for words.

Sherrie said...

Well dear friend, you have touched all of our hearts tonight. What a loving, special person you are and what a wonderful husband you have!!
First loves are very special and a part of our heart will always belong to them. The tragedy in this story causes you to hold on a little tighter to those special feelings and memories. You honored Mike in a very special way by sharing this story with us...thanks for the reminder that life is so precious and can be so short! I am sure you already know this but Tim is a Keeper!!

Have a good week,dear friend!!

Hugs, Sherrie

Trace4J said...

what a sweet loving heart you have..I have goose bumps. I do believe when God takes away he gives you joy back. My heart was broken when I miscarried but a year later God blessed me with my son. I still have a hole in my heart from my loss..But God gave me joy again with a loving son. I wish you were my neighbor Jen.What a wonderful husband you have now too. Big hugs to you Jen.
Love Granny Trace

JenR65 said...

Thank you for sharing your precious memories, it brought tears to my eyes. I am so glad you remember and keep his memory alive. HUGs to you....

LeeHillPrimitives said...

Jenny, You made me cry now for you as a little girl. THANK YOU so much for sharing your beautiful and lovely memory with us. I am sure that this post cause you so many tears. Since I started blogging I read so many posts that made me cry but this one is very touching. My respect for your DH, God gives you an awesome man to fill the rest of your heart although a part of it always pertains to your Mike the rest of it belongs to your husband. You are so lucky to have him in your life to share your past memories and have the liberty to cry in front of him. Hope you find Mike's mom again and she can see this tribute to her son. Hugs my friend, Evelyn

Sherry said...

what a wonderful story. it brought tears to my eyes.

Never So Simple said...

What a sad but sweet story. I'm sure my co workers are wondering why I have tears in my eyes. I think it's great you still remember him every year. I love the sampler great tribute.

Donna

Tracey said...

Your story touched me so much. What a lovely tribute to your first love.

Hugs,
Tracey

The Real Estate Talker said...

So beautiful, and heartfelt. I'm sorry for your tragic loss. Love lingers on, and your love for him, has made you a stronger person
Blessings

marnie said...

I'm sorry you had to go thru that at such a tender age, Jen. What a great tribute...not only to your first love but also to your wonderful husband who "got it" right from the beginning.

Hugs to you and your hubby,
marnie

Primgirl39 said...

Oh Jen,
A beautiful loving tribute, brings tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing something so special.
Hugs to you my friend,
Marissa

Erna said...

What can I say that hasn't been said...thank you for sharing this wonderful story.
Hugs
Erna

Janet-Olde Crow Primitives said...

Thank you for sharing this story. Now I am teary eyed.
You do have wonderful memories of him.
~Janet

ctlogcabin said...

Jen Im late to comment...but what a Beautiful piece of your Heart you so generously shared
with us. Thank You ~~
Hugs ~ Connie xox

TheCrankyCrow said...

Happy Birthday Mike.
You were truly loved - this I know. I also truly believe that when God closes a door, he opens a window. We may not know the window is opened, but it is. Jen - bless you and may God keep Mike's memory safe with you. Robin

Trace4J said...

What a sweet loving heart you have! How touching. I think God gives us a wonderful gift by loving and being loved. And you gave that to Mike in his short life. And then God also gave you Tim. You are blessed.
Hugs To You,
Granny Trace

www.grannytracescrapsandsquares.com

primlin56 said...

the hair on the back of my neck was standing up and goose bumps running down my arms as i read your post....very heartfelt....i know he is your angel.....watching down on you everyday...thanks for sharing

*Kountry*Porch*Primitives* said...

Very touching....made me tear up again! Thanks for opening your heart ~Kriss~

Denise's Kountry Patch said...

What a beautiful story, made me cry but also made me smile...so touching...you writings are so moving...hugs....