In a Word


Babes, I still take Ollie for a walk every morning. We still come to the lake a lot, we're here now. This is the first place I came the morning after. Shauna and I brought Ollie, and I stumbled Ollie-at-the-lakemy way through phone calls telling my closest friends, words I still can't believe came out of my mouth. Some of the details are foggy. I can remember some things so intensely, and others have become a blur.

I remember after I got the call that I needed to come home, I was driving and wasn't sure I could make it safely, I was freaking out. I called Heather on the car phone but she didn't answer. I called her again and again I don't know how many times. Screaming ‘answer your goddamn phone’, as it rang and rang. Finally I called Shauna. She calmed me down enough for me to make it home. There was some time before we knew for sure, we were all just sitting around, that time was the worst time. I felt so much pain for your pain. I thought you were suffering and my body was aching for any pain you would be in. It hurt me that you might be all alone and struggling, I was praying you knew I was with you even though I wasn't there. Right after I found out for sure, Heather called back. Literally seconds after I finished screaming in the backyard someone handed me my phone and said, it's your sister. I think my first words to her were, ‘Rene died’. She didn't say anything and I said into the silence, ‘I'm not kidding’, even then I thought that was an odd thing to say. There is no way she thought I was faking, there just are no words to follow what I had told her. I'm not sure what was said from there. She was super pregnant and T was sleeping, but they came down that night anyways. She told Mom and Dad who were still in Vancouver dealing with Grandma's death. They showed up at my place hours later. I had already been to your Mom’s place.

I guess after you tell the family of your beloved that their baby isn't coming home you have pretty much said the worst words imaginable.

The morning after we came here to the lake and walked. I think I called Jessica and Sarah, I called Tina and I think that might have been all. I’m not sure to be honest.

I haven't really dealt with all of that. I see Adam's face every now and then flashing across my mind like a video. His pain writing all over it, as we told your crew the next morning. Sweet young Charlie was there, you loved him. You were so proud to make a spot for him on your team. Joking that we would always have a neighborhood kid that would do odd jobs for us.  Reg came and helped me with it, he had already told Chris and together we told the boys. I miss them coming around, I miss listening to Adam and Connor’s random stories. We'd joked about being old as they recounted tails of single life, but really we knew how special it was to be where we were.

So much power in a word. So much pain in those words. I skipped over feeling a lot at that time, not intentionally. It was just too much to live and process at the same time. It was serial and I was doing my best in every moment to get by. To make decisions that I could never have been ready to make.

There we were in the kitchen, me, Reg, Shauna, my Mom and yours, when my Dad comes in. ‘The coroner needs to know, burial or cremation? I'm sorry Chels but you need to decide what you are going to do for the funeral…’ That really happened babes. I looked up at Reg and said, I want a celebration of life at Carlos. I had never ever in my life through that before, ever. But just like that my world had shifted and there we all were. Words I could never have imagined saying, less than one month after your 29th birthday. God, babes, I am so sorry. 

The power in a word.

I hope I said enough loving words to you when I had the chance. That through the years my words were kind on your heart and loving for your soul. I am grateful that my last words to you were, I love you and have fun. Still my wish for you to this day. Our last touch was a big full-on hug and kiss. I am grateful that the words spoken the day before were sweet and honest and that we ‘napped’ twice. We were connected and present with one another. That I saw your beauty and felt seen by you. Babes these times now are tough, but really it is a testament to the love we all have for you.

Rene, thank you for all you taught and are teaching me. Knowing the profound power of my words;

I am Loving you.