I’ve had a lot of people inquire as to why this year is the last year for Team James and Jake. (I don’t think I’ve announced that on this blog, have I? Well, this is the fifth and final year for Team James and Jake.)
After last year’s walk, or maybe even on the drive to the actual walk, I told Brian what I was thinking “just one more year.” I told him that I’d see how I felt during the year and make my decision once the fundraising push for 2012 began.
2012 rolled around and I knew my decision. It was simple.
This was it.
Things are so busy right now. Four kids, a full-time (totally dreamy) business, a husband who works in a different city entirely and who goes to grad school. It’s obvious that time is an issue. Time should be an issue.
What’s not obvious is how hard it is to handle people forgetting.
I get it. It happens. I’ve forgotten about others, I mean, I remember, on many occasions, the raw heartbreak that I once read about, I remember clutching my chest and tears streaming down my face as I read about someone’s loss, someone other than mine.
And there’s no way to properly describe what it feels like. Aside from the pain, the heartbreak, the learning how to take each day and RE-learn how to live having lost something you so desperately loved, there’s another aspect you probably don’t think about.
It’s how others feel.
There’s always an initial outpouring and it’s necessary and beautiful and the best thing for a grieving person, no matter how much they try to deny people (*raises hand*)
And then there’s the people, the people who feel completely vested in you. Whether it’s your mother or your sister or a blog reader, whether they’ve met or not, they are there, holding your hand, whether it’s in person or virtual. It’s there and it’s felt and it’s … again … necessary. (and so, so beautiful.)
And life … moves on … and things being to
And that’s how it is. That’s how it’s supposed to be, that’s what helps us become stronger and move on.
I like it that way. I like that my deepest moments of despair are reserved for just me or are intimately shared with someone close to me. It doesn’t have to be tears, it can be a look, a simple nod, but it’s there. And it helps.
After losing James and Jake, I shared something with my sister, I said “I can’t bear the thought of them being forgotten.”
And I couldn’t and I still can’t. But I’m trying to reframe that thought. We, as a family, will never, ever forget. But others, they’ve moved on, they’ve shared their piece of their heart with me and it was so beautiful and some of you still do. Some of you donate or walk or share with me when you saw two birds and it made you think of our sweet babies. And some of you, have picked up your loving hearts and shared them with others who needed it. And I … love that.
And so maybe that’s where I’m at. Maybe I know you haven’t forgotten, I mean, maybe I feel at peace with this decision of this being the final year of Team James and Jake because I BELIEVE that you, as a loving human being have given me all that you could give ME and you’re ready to give to someone else who needs you as much as I did.
And Oh my God, that is completely okay with me.
And so, if you feel it, donate. If you can and want to, walk with me. But if not? That’s okay with me. Knowing your heart is doing something good for anyone is the best tribute I could possibly ask for when it comes to James and Jake.