Five years ago, we moved to Phoenix to be closer to you, mom and Ric Dad. Five years ago we had Emalynn arrive a month early and we were unprepared. Five years ago you would pick up Levi, who was two, and babysit him so that Katie could try and sleep. Five years ago I was working at a charter school down in the city of Maricopa and Kyle was in second grade at this same school. We drove forty-five minutes from our apartment in Ahwatukee to the school Kyle attended and I worked at. Five years ago I got a phone call that you had stopped breathing. Five years ago our lives changed forever. Five years ago the life I was living was put into perspective of something much greater than myself. Five years ago I experienced deep despair and purpose in the same day. Five years ago I started writing a book about you, about me and what God did the week between your death and your burial. I miss you more than I care to show, I keep my cards close to my chest, it is my defense mechanism. This is why I write, to force myself to reflect on life and not bottle up my hurt. Thank you for making me an older brother, I love differently having had you in my life. Hannah I want you to know that even in death, your mom and dad care for you greatly and miss you every day. I mourn with them and I am taking care of them and they are taking care of us. God I know you hear my prayers and thoughts, and I voice them here so that others may understand that it’s okay to grieve and it’s okay to feel broken. As Paul said to the Corinthians, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4, ESV).
If you have found yourself reading this, please download and share a sample from my book. A small gift on the 5 year anniversary of my sister’s passing. Thank you for reading.
In Truth & Love,
Matthew J. Diaz