Shenandoah, Virginia Time: 1996-08-25 22:46:00

Comments: FROM MY JOURNAL (it's been a while since I shared from it..... but am feeling especially melancholy tonight - can't sleep - ) Eric....There is a light that burns under the deck of our house, my son, in the Memorial place we made for you here. It comes on at dusk and goes off at dawn. But the light that you brought into my life when you became my son - will NEVER ever go out.... no, Never.... never.... never......
*At Christmas-time -96, I found the star fixture pictured here - and inside burns a little 7 watt nite-light bulb and it has burned round the clock from that day unto this writing 1/24/99 without ever being replaced! I check that light each night at dusk - expecting that one evening it will need a replcement - but so far - it burns perpetually!

I love you Eric. My whole life was changed at your appearance, in so many ways - because something so special happened. And I - I don't even have words for it... don't know them myself. I just know that there is a bond and a joy and fulfillment that came with you. It sounds funny to say this about a son - but.... you helped me to know that men can be more than the kind of men I knew growing up! That a man could be deep, wise, witty, gentle and caring..... all those things without fearing or sacrificing his manhood to do so.

So much like my beloved Grandpappy you were. I lost him so young as a child. I lost you so young as a mother & son. So soon to give you up.... So many years that I potentially must go on without you. (who knows though - perhaps not so many?) In your leaving..... my life has changed once again, changed in a way (ways) that..... well... 
there IS good and bad in ALL things!

I will never again be that person that I was - far from it in fact. There is a constant aching emptiness. Something of me, died with you, Eric. What I am, and what my life is today and will be for whatever tomorrows will be assigned to me - is going to be different, is going to be more because you were here, and less because you are no longer.

The memorial light here shines from dusk till dawn - but your light will shine always and forever in and from within, my spirit. Peace and joy..... oh yes. I longed and longed, even prayed for them for you... but I was, of course, thinking of your finding it here..... in this time and place. But then Do any of us ever, really ...? here....? There are always, in each persons' life and experience.... events and circumstances that trouble and seek to destroy it. ~ Now though - you have it. ~ Perfectly! Answered prayer... Yes ~ but at - Oh, what a price (for me....) For that price, is my being here without you. One thing I can say though - I am willing to pay the price for having loved you and for having you be taken from me ..... to there.... Yes! ~ Where you are is worth where I am and what I feel at being here.... I too, will be `there' one day and all this will not even be worthwhile to recall.....

I would not want you, "looking down here", to see my grief and suffering at your leaving...... but I do hope, that with you there, is the memory of how fervently and completely I loved and love you, my son! I am certain that the `works tested by fire'.... will be those of loving and so, perhaps that has gone with you.  A part of me....   
I will love you always....

When I go to Freesoul Rock - I sit or stand there and feel so close to you and to my own destiny (to joining you in the kingdom).... There is that sense of freedom and serenity - that nearness of heaven - and it fills me with strong awareness of your everlasting peace. ~ The best, and most comforting feeling/thought - is that you now know God Himself - that you no longer suffer the delusions and disillusionment of men who claim to represent Him... No more hypocrisy or sense of being a stranger in a strange land.

I've come to realize that the comfort and peace that come to me up there on that Rock - is simply the association of my own coming release... It is knowing that this life is Not forever! I too will leave it when He is ready for me to do so.... That is a great reassurance - it keeps me able to push on and endure.... Compared to Eternity - this is but a tiny little space of time - and will be forgotten when it ends.... Eric, my beloved son, You are..... Face to face with Him now! Seeing our Heavenly Father ~ Who He is! ~ What He is.!..

How could I wish anything else or more for you?

A thousand times now my soul has whispered to me of His mercifulness in your death! Not only for you - but for me. In just the blink of an eye.... without terror, fear, pain or agony of any last moments in physical pain, no lingering even for seconds.... - He is truly a wonderful and most loving and merciful God! I know not why He has chosen for you to go and for me to stay here... but I do know that through you, I became ever closer to Him. You are with me now. You influence all my thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Your mark upon my life is a permanent one - and as I mark the lives of others - you have a part in that too! And so, even as I sit here, sleepless and aching with the emptiness of your absence from my life.... I can and I do say -

~~~AMEN, My Abba, Amen~~~

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