Letter to My Daughter, Paige

Posted by on Sep 22, 2012 in Blog, Grief and Loss, Lessons

Letter to My Daughter, Paige

Dear Paige,

I am not even sure where to start my letter to you. In so few years you have endured more in your life than most can imagine. Yet despite it all, you are happier than ever and always remain positive. Thank you for always being such a trooper.


When I learned I was pregnant, I knew right away that you were a part of God’s plan for my life. Something deep in my soul told me I needed to have another child. Strangely I feared that something could happen to Blake or Brooke and I knew I didn’t want either of them to be an only child. Daddy and I weren’t getting along and our marriage was strained. Regardless, we were all excited about having a new baby—especially Brooke.


You were an easy baby and your brother and sister loved to help take care of you. Brooke was literally like a little Mommy to you. By the time you were nine months old, your colorful personality was evident. You loved to make your siblings laugh and we renamed you the “wild child”. You were hilarious and full of spunk.


Daddy and I divorced when you were just a toddler; you quickly adjusted to this life. Although you were extremely independent and determined to do everything on your own, your sister took on a parenting like role with you, especially when you were with Dad. She was always there to help look after you and enjoyed every minute you had together. You were the center of all of our lives.


You had just turned six when the tragedy happened. Like the rest of us, you were having a blast in Costa Rica. You spent a lot of time there with Brooke. You slept with her at night and she never complained about having you with her as most girls her age would.


I know the accident itself left a scar on you forever and I know sometimes you struggle with the memories of that day. You were right there with us, also in shock.


What amazes me is how you helped comfort me through my mourning. You always knew Brooke was still with us and reminded me in my darkest days that I didn’t have to let her go. You helped me realize she is always here.


Although you only had five years of life with Brooke, you still recall a lifetime of memories. Your memories are much more vivid than one would expect considering how young you were when your sister passed. Perhaps this is because you value them more than most children your age.


Many people comment about your constant smile and  “always happy” demeanor despite what you have been through. I suppose it is because you understand how fragile life is and how real death is for all of us. Therefore, you appreciate life in a way many are not capable of doing. Although you have suffered through the death of your sister, you have gained tremendous strength that has made you resilient and fearless. You know there is nothing to lose, you already feel exposed and naked recognizing the reality of death. Because of this you will go on to accomplish great things; fear will not hold you back from reaching your dreams. You understand that sometimes life hurts; but it goes on.


Paige, you are young but your life lessons have already made you very wise. Hardship has allowed you to recognize how beautiful and rich life is in every way. You stop and appreciate a beautiful sunset, the miracle of the birth of baby birds, or simply the clouds in the sky. You have a capacity to experience total joy from the simple things in life. You love freely with all your heart and have learned the value of memories, and time with those that you love.


Let Brookie continue to live on in your heart.  I see so much of her in you, things like how you love to do good deeds and expect nothing in return and how your realize there is always something to be thankful for.


I am sorry your childhood has been so different than most. My working with other bereaved parents has proven to you life is dark; we must supply our own light. The reality is the sky isn’t always blue, and the sun doesn’t always shine. Tragedies happen but you cannot give up, you have to fight. The pain you feel is life. Sometimes we experience heartbreak so new light gets in that helps transform our life.


You may only be nine years old, but your smile is because you have already fought the toughest battle and looked life in the face. It is obvious you believe nothing can hold you back.


I am thankful I have you in my life. You make me smile and laugh often. I promise we will do many fun things together and make the most of life. You give me tremendous strength and comfort just by being you.


I love you Peanut Butter. I look forward to the many things ahead of us. Keep smiling; it touches hearts in a way you don’t yet comprehend.


Love forever and ever,


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