Skip to main content

On the second anniversary of Julie and Timothys parting

Looking back, these have been the longest two years of my life. On the day of the accident we got up early, like many other mornings before taking a long distance trip. We got in the car, said a short prayer and got on the road. It was a normal start to our day. An in that normal day, everything was about to change.



A little over one hour into our trip, on April 18th, 2012, the accident happened. Everything changed dramatically since. The first months were mere survival, struggling between getting up in the morning, asking hundreds of questions, working out all the legal aspects of the accident, and trying to do the job of two. Some days getting thru the next hour seemed overwhelming. Two years have passed since that dark morning. This week I have given myself some space and intentional time to process another layer of what happened. My hope is to bring more closure and healing.


I am writing goodbye letters addressing areas that I felt needed closure. I am writing out excerpts of conversations I feel I wanted to have had with Julie and Timothy. I am apologizing and expressing things I wish I could have said in person. From others peoples experience of loss, this is a good thing to do. The more I face the pain, the more healing takes place.

I remember how during the week of Easter we lost electric power for three days. This is common in Obligado where we live. Julie and I had long conversations. We stayed home. Julie was a very fun person to be with. She was a very hopeful and optimistic person. After that week she wrote , in one blog entry, "this was a quiet and dark easter".

Julie was not a complainer. She found daily strength in her devotional time. She would take a day every week to fast and pray for her family, future kids and the various ministries she was involved.  Often I woke up at 4 AM and Julie was reading her bible or on her knees praying. She seemed to be caring a burden for others at various seasons of her life.

Its unique that this anniversary falls during good Friday. This is a day that symbolizes pain, love, forgiveness to millions who believe in Jesus Christ as the incarnate son of God. Gods willingness to give up his only son and see the pain before and during the moments on the cross is beyond me. This act of God alone, transcends all reasoning and should be enough to draw us into His presence. His love goes beyond the best written theology or the most self sacrificing acts of any human being.



Fathers and mothers who have lost a beloved son/daughter, know very well the human pain involved. It does not seem fair, it goes against all logic. Timothy was the joy of our home. He welcomed Julie and me to the world of parenthood. All I wanted to do is spent time with Timothy. And we did spent a lot of time together. The night before the accident we still shot a home made cannon which we had built following a YouTube tutorial video. We had so much fun with that.

Timothy's lights was snuffed out too early for me, but perhaps in Gods ordained time. I feel that Timothy represent so much unfinished work for me. I had all the desire and will to raise him, help shape him and one day see him get married, and take off with his own wings. I loved this kid soo soo much.



I must end by saying, I recognize that Julie and Timothy will never be back on this earth. But I am not hopeless because God has given us the promise of eternity which is the  longing and quest of every human being. He promised us a new heaven a new earth. He promised us He would be preparing a home. He is the beginning and the end of all things. And He promises us He will be with us until the end of times.








So as the future unfolds and new memories, people and activities occupy Anahi and myself, we will trust and continue to zoom into the glimpses of eternity displayed in creation in the people around us and my relationship with HIM.

Comments

  1. Norberto,

    I am new to your site, and I have tears in my eyes. Your writing and vulnerability as you wade through your grief while putting one foot in front of the other is powerful.

    I have also lost a spouse but under very different circumstances. My first wife died a slow painful death from cancer while me and my six year old watched helplessly. I was able to have all the conversations that I could think of before she died so that closure was not as difficult, but it was still hard for sure. I took a month and looked over all the old letters, greeting cards, photos and I treasured the memories and cried.

    I took a trip to the mountains with my son, father, and brother in law and I asked the "what next" type of questions. One question in particular that I was asking was about remarriage. As a young man with a young child, I was torn. I didn't want my son growing up without his mother, but I couldn't help that. I didn't want my son growing up without A mother, but that meant I had to be willing to move on. I thought about 1 Cor 7 and being single and concerned about the lord's affairs. My brother in law gave me some sage advice observing that as a single parent, I would be very much consumed by the world's affairs and that I might even be more free to be about the Lord's affairs as a married man.

    So, I opened my heart to expectation that God would supply a partner for me and he did. We met, courted, and married within a year and a new chapter in life had truly begun. After a few years She adopted my son legally, gaining full legal stature as his mother. He calls her mom, she calls him son, and I take great solace in knowing that my child did not grow up with noone to fill the mother spot in his heart. We have 4 more children and life is good, crazy but very good.

    I don't know where you are in that part of your healing, but I wanted to share my story to encourage you to consider the option and to hope again. In retrospect, the hardest part of my healing journey (besides the fear that my son would grow up motherless) was the loneliness of living life and having no-one to share it with. When something good happened, I wanted to tell my wife. When something bad happened, I wanted to be tell my wife and have her pray with me and she wasn't there. It wasn't just my son who had a slot that needed to be filled. David said, I looked to my left and my right and behold there was no-one who cared for my soul. That's a painful way to live.

    I pray God reveals his will to you and blesses you as you continue your healing journey.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Christmas in Paraguay!

If you're wondering what Paraguayans do at Christmastime, they have some great traditions, including the "noche buena" meal on Christmas Eve at midnight.  They eat lots chipa guasu (a type of corn casserole, stay tuned for a recipe), asado or grilled meat (some eat it cold), salads, especially fruit salad, watermelon and drink mucho terere.


Families travel from all over the country, many even return from working in other countries like Brazil, Argentina, and Spain, to celebrate with loved ones. This is us at last year's Kurrle celebration in Asuncion. Festivities are anything but a silent night with fireworks, loud music and drinking cidra (hard cider). 



Most Paraguayans do not decorate Christmas trees (we decorate ours in shorts!) or emphasize Santa Claus.  Instead, they put beautiful nativities "pesebres" in their yards and in store fronts.  Kind of novel to focus on Christ at Christmas, isn't it!


To beat the heat, many Paraguayans go to a river to rel…

The Genesis of my story in Paraguay: Part 2

In Part 1, I shared how my first move to Paraguay was at age 5. At that time I was a minor, following my parents around. But my second move to Paraguay was at age 25 when after college, I—or better said, we—decided to move back to Paraguay. This time, the Genesis was a letter inviting us to help pioneer a new radio station there.


At the time I had just gotten married to my college sweetheart Julie. We were both enrolled in seminary, enjoying just being married and going to school. Among our hobbies at the time was traveling the U.S. and to any country that we had the funds to go to. During those days, we began running seriously and trained for our first marathons and adventure race. Our first marathon was the Flying Pig marathon in Cincinnati, Ohio. Julie and I finished together in what I thought was a pretty good time of 4 hours, 12 minutes.


One day, a letter in our mailbox got us thinking about plans beyond graduation. The letter was from Walter Franz, inviting us to help establis…

Paraguayan Weddings

On Valentine’s Day, we had the joy of attending the wedding of Sandra and Anastacio, young leaders in the church. Sandra is my assistant with Children of Promise and Anastacio, apart from his carpentry job, has a popular youth-focused radio program every night at 8:00 on our station.

We’ve been to quite a few weddings, and these are some of the uniquenesses of southern Paraguayan wedding celebrations from our North American culture:

1. Nothing is fancy. Emphasis is placed on the act of marriage and not on the decorations or food.
2. It is not an expectation that parents help pay for expenses. Most families just make it each month with regular expenses and cannot afford to pay for eleborate feasts. Most couples have to spend months saving for their own wedding.
3. Borrow as much as possible. Many times wedding dresses are borrowed 5-10 times, because few women can afford their own. Flowers, decorations, shoes and ties (Norb loans out his ties often...since he never wears them!) are …