Saturday, February 27, 2010

Would You Look For Her?

A few months ago, during one of my drives to see my dad when he was in the hospital, I began having this innate desire to find someone.  It was such a strong desire that as soon as I got to the hospital and settled in to the chair by my dad's bedside, I began to tell him of my desire to find this person.  I was so excited...it seemed so right...it was as if this HAD to be done...I thought his reaction would be the same...but, it wasn't...he wasn't really big on the idea.  So, being that I am kind of a daddy's girl, I took his advice and 'called off the search.'
Well, today, I am revisiting the idea of looking for this person.  So, I want your advice on whether or not you would try to...given the situation...to find this person. 

Of course, for you to answer that question, I kind of have to tell you what the situation is, don't I?

So, let's go back...Hmmm...almost 15 years ago...when I was the young age of 15.  The date is August 20, 1995.  It is a Sunday.  I was living with my mother, 'stepfather,' and my 'setpbrothers' in Northern VA.  Lee, the oldest of my two step brothers (and the one I was closer to), decided we were going to go swimming with a friend of ours, Patrick (who had just returned from Basketball camp), at a local swimming hole in a nearby resevoir.  I remember while we were walking towards the swimming hole...about a mile away...we were eating a package of coconut cookies.

The area we were swimming in was a branch off the main resevoir and was about 20 feet wide...on the other side of the 'branch' was a huge rock that went out into the water...we decided to swim to the other side and jump off of the rock into the water.  So, Lee went first, then Patrick, then me.

About halfway across, Patrick stopped.  I know he stopped because I caught up to him.  I was confused and I looked at him.  His face looked completely blank...his eyes got big...in that split second he began frantically splashing and waving his arms...and, in the only way I know how to describe it, he began trying to 'climb me like a ladder'...pushing me down into the water as if he were trying to climb out of the water.

I remember coming up...SCREAMING for my brother...All I remember is trying to keep myself up while trying to hold onto Patrick...I could feel myself taking in a lot of water...and I was becoming weak...as my brother swam back out to us, he told me to go back...he was worried I would drown.  So, I did...I left...I went to the rock.

Once I got there, I turned around to look to see what was happening.  What I saw was nothing..no one!  Not my brother, not Patrick...NOTHING BUT WATER and ripples.  Then, Lee came up...I saw him.  He said, "I got him, I got him."  Then, my brothers face turned as white as a ghost...'HE LET GO, HE LET GO...HELP!!!!!'...then Lee went under water again...up, and down, and up and down he went as I yelled and yelled for help!  It seemed like forever before someone came...I was running down the shore line to some boaters and a few people from their homes came out and called 911.

It seemed like forever...forever!

All I remember was an officer escorting us home...the road we went home on that daywas not the road we walked on to get to the swimming hole.  The road we were on would never be the same road we walked on again in life.

Our friend drowned that day.  It took over 40 minutes to recover his body.

His memorial in his family's South Carolina Southern Baptist Church was amazing to someone who had never sat through such a service (you know, the extent of religion in my house was a regular joke my Dad would tell)...During his memorial, the pastor spoke about how it was not our place to question God's will for calling Patrick home...he went on to say that for all we knew, God needed a new player on his Basketball team.

That day I found God...or rather, God found me.  Moreso, that day I accepted God's will into my life. 

It was an unbelieveable experience...one I can never tell, or write, with out shedding tears. 

However, there is something from that beautiful day that doesn't rest well with me.  I remember waking past the casket at his funeral and looking at his mother...I remember wanting her to reach out to me so we could comfort each other with an embrace.

I still want to hug her today!  I want her to know her son did not die in vain...that he is still thought of...that his death 'saved' me and brought me to God...I was certainly not in a position to ever know Him otherwise. 

I need to tell her how I feel...as a mother, if I lost my child, I would want to know something, anything, good came out of it.

So, that's my question...would you look for her?

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