THE HARDEST LOVE STORY I Ever Knew

  Jacob Travis Bowersock – Our Oldest Grandson

     February 24, 1998 – June 27, 2014

The new text on her phone read “Goodbye Mom, I love you”.  She just knew. The knowledge was in her dna.

He was feeding the dogs, in the country a few miles away, for his Dad and stepmom, while they vacationed. After the text is a blur of exact moments of clarity, never to be erased, never to dull or fade.

She reached him. It didn’t matter how, but she reached him, alone and longing to trade places. A tear rolled down his youthful cheek. She reached to sweep the tear into her heart as a sacred offering. He was 16, the middle child of three, oldest son, father’s irreplaceable favorite, speeding to the nearest hospital.

She was the first to ever hold him and the last. It was courageous, but hardly more than a pittance of what was battling within her heart, her brain, her body.

In the days ahead, coherent thoughts came and went. She realized there was never a hospital or ambulance bill. She had other mundane thoughts. She prompted herself to focus, plan, sort and comfort just to fight off the injustice and searing pain that engulfed her for endless moments. She rationalized. She scoured her heart for every good deed, every sweet moment, every spoken word, every single memory in a 16 year file, that might erase or ease that last day.

We all love our kids. We love them from the first breath. We love them through all the firsts, through all the tantrums, through all the ages of growing, all the way to gone from home.  But not gone like this. This way-of-going rips at all her sacrifice, all her prayers, her hopes and dreams. This way-of-going stomps on her heart with spikes of judgement and selfish indifference, with no hope of reconciliation ever.

If she is to continue breathing, with no hope ever, the breathing will be shallow and weak and fiery and explosive and barely life sustaining.

One foolish deed, one simple tear, one empty heart, will forever be their love story.

 

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