I am certain I have mentioned somewhere along the way, how much of a private person I am. But, I have this need to pay homage, publicly, to a god-daughter that is seriously gone to soon. Although, we cannot question why God moves His hand, or why He chooses to do the things He does, life becomes extremely puzzling when a young person is laid to rest before their parents. With that said, we lost our beloved god-daughter, Nicole Courtney, in the wee hours of last Friday morning. In fact, my sister-in-law called my husband on his cell phone while we were driving in the car. And, can I add, thirty is way to young. In my mind, I just assisted her with a letter to the Dean at Rutgers School of Law in Newark, New Jersey as to why she wanted to transfer from Hofstra in Long Island. It is devastating to lose a loved one at any time, but for a mother to lose a child on Mother’s Day weekend, puts that mother to a test of strength that can only come from One source.
I recall this bundle coming along right at a time when I, myself, dealt with an experience that would stay with me the remainder of my life. Therefore, this little girl brought us much joy. Many days and nights were spent enjoying her company as we watched her grow into the young woman she had become. As a little one, and since her parents lived only a few miles away, we were fortunate enough to have her with us maybe as often as her parents. In my mind’s eye, I’m watching a three-year old reaching and saying, “I want more,” when we introduced her to clams on the half-shell. Then, by the time she started school we didn’t spend as much time with her. After that, the teenage years hit, and you know what happens with that. But, when she turned sixteen, we all vacationed together. In fact, right here in the town we now live. On one of those days, we walked in to a seafood restaurant, and her mother asked her what she would have. Her response, “I think I’ll just have a bucket of clams.” My husband and I snapped our heads around to stare at each other, because we had, not a clue that habit had taken hold.
It’s been a rough go for both my husband, and myself since we relocated to this state. We came here in August of ’04, and from January ’06 until now, we’ve lost ten people – both friends, and family. Then, just as you think things have calmed down, a call comes that my last aunt is having challenges. If you’ve been reading along, you already know that. Now, five months later, and we get this phone call, which raises the number to eleven. I heard a renowned minister say not long ago, he and his wife’s family went through just this type thing at one time; all very close together. He admitted that he prayed, and repented for everything he could think of, knowing those things must have brought about such misery. But then, he had a revelation – it had nothing to do with any wrong doing on he or any family member’s behalf. This is life – this is how it happens at times, and there is nothing anyone can do to make it stop.
Because of all of the above, and by Sunday, even though I knew we had to make the trip home, I decided, I just couldn’t. Honestly, both my husband and myself are still dealing with much of what has transpired since we’ve been here. But, on Wednesday the family said their farewells to yet another who is gone to soon, leaving all of us with a large hole that she once filled. And, there is nothing else for anyone to say but, sleep on angel’s wings baby girl. You will be missed by so many.