Dear family and friends,
Today marks another anniversary since Jud’s death. I might have thought after 5 months that a little of the pain would begin to abate, but it just seems to morph into different forms of deep, heavy grief.
However, we experienced a reprieve on our trip to Kauai. We cannot express enough gratitude to the many people in our church who contributed to send us on this vacation. It was such a blessing to enjoy the beauty of the Garden Island and get away from our day-to-day world of sorrow. We did lots of hiking and snorkeling, took a helicopter ride and enjoyed a boat trip that gave us an opportunity to see the uninhabited side of the island. It was a sweet time!
Coming back, on the other hand, was more difficult than we anticipated. I, in particular, experienced significant anguish with re-entering my daily life that screams of our loss.
We found Easter, the celebration of our risen Lord, to be a great reminder of the hope for which we cling, but it also proved to be heart-wrenching as we could not escape visions of last year when Jud was racing around my parent’s backyard to hunt for hidden surprises tucked inside plastic eggs.
All the “firsts” without Jud prove to be extremely difficult and we have another “first” coming up as my birthday quickly approaches next week. These occasions accentuate his absence, serving as glaring reminders that our family is so incomplete without him.
We have been working with the City of Costa Mesa to have a park bench and tree donated to Wilson Park, also known in our home as “Judson’s park”, in his honor. They will have plaques displaying his name and the years of his life: 2004-2007. This is a particularly special way to memorialize him because it was one of his favorite places, and we can see it through the windows of our home. The Parks and Recreation commission has approved our proposal and the target date for completion is Jud’s ½ birthday on June 24th.
We ache for our precious little boy, but continue to be amazed at the many ways people are still reaching out to us. I honestly do not know how we would be making it through this season without the constant love, compassion, and thoughtfulness of so many. Our hearts overflow with gratitude!
I close my letter today with the sustaining hope of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…
“Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. You will increase my honor and comfort me once again.” -Psalm 71:20-21
Christina (on behalf of Drake too)