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A letter to my son

February 20, 2012

For the book contest give-away, please see the February 15 post.

Reed  – I can hardly believe four years ago at this hour, I was still trying to figure out where you were.  No answers were coming, and my heart was frantic after seeing the story in another mother’s eyes.  Yet, I clung to the hope only found in Jesus that you were okay.  I simply didn’t (and still don’t) know any other way to operate.  And even though, Daddy and I (along with Sawyer, Erin, and Cloie) didn’t receive the news we wanted, God still provides!  He provides the blessings of friendships, memories, hugs, and sometimes more than anything else, rest. 


In these four years, we have tried our very best to remember and honor your most important legacy of loving God with all our hearts, souls, and minds.  And I think that you would look down and smile at the ripples in the pond that your death created not only in our lives but in the lives of family, friends, and strangers. 


Just to give you a quick update of those ripples:


  • Many have shared that because of the faith of one sweet little redhead that they got right with God and are DEFINITELY going to see you in heaven now.  (Even if we never know the full story this side of heaven, this news is incredibly comforting.)
  • Your dog and best friend continues to touch the lives of others when he goes to visit friends at nursing homes.  The love you poured into him through the countless hours spent together shows in the way he gingerly and tenderly gives back.
  • The best friend who you spent most hours with is an awesome guy who I know you would still be proud to call your friend.
  • The best friend who shared your faith is probably one of the most live out loud Christians I know and is also a tireless worker at Reed’s Run.
  • The best friend who shared your church has grown into the most amazing prayer warrior and quiet leader.
  • Many other friends continue to share the difference that you made simply by being you, and now they, too, are making their own ripples.
  • Your love of reading lives on in a reading program up north at a daycare we chose to adopt. 
  • Your love of Star Wars is known far and wide.  People still joke and laugh about your send off.


Things are not always rosy. But when we feel sad and blue, some sweet person will send us a tangible reminder of God’s love, or we will hear that beautiful cardinal sing.  It’s then that we know that God is present in the here and now, and He is big enough to withstand our doubts, worries, and grief. 


When I look at your siblings, I am often reminded of the tangled web of emotions that you shared with each of them.  Those unique relationships are the impetus of your legacy cheetah program.  I can tell you that Sawyer’s comedy routines have only gotten better with time, and that you would hate them (because he still gets big laughs around here).  Erin has moved a long way past her first days of learning to shoot hoops.  She no longer has a “Laura, Mary, Carrie wind-up” to just be able to get the ball through the hoop.  And yes, we still cheer just as loud as we did back in the driveway with the “Ingalls” girls.  And Cloie, oh Reed, you would not believe how much of you is a part of her.  Her passion for learning and her heart for loving others are identical to yours.  She even has your penchant for opening the wrong side of the parmesan cheese.  Oopsies! 


Reed time doesn’t heal all wounds.  Despite what some think, we have closed on houses and business deals, but we will never close on our children.  With that said however, each and every day that we miss you, we know that God knows exactly what it is like to lose a Son.  He knows our pain intimately.  This past year we have decided as we bring a close to Reed’s Run the theme will be “To rise from tragedy, cling to HOPE.”  Every day, we choose to do exactly that, knowing in heaven to you it will be a blink of eye when you see us again.


Always proud to be your momma! Now and forever, clinging that HOPE!


  1. Mrs. Stevens
    Your an inspiration to all who hear and read what you have to say. You are a strong mother, wife, teacher, friend, along with many other occupations that God has graced you with. Reed was an amazing person and friend to all. His attitude towards life is one that we all should follow. He was a person that would give it his all in everything he did. His actions have touched everyone he has met. He lives on in each and everyone he has touched.

  2. Jason – thank you for always helping by sending us a note of encouragement or some great Reed story. He thought you were a great guy, and I know that like me, he would be proud of the man you are growing to become.

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