Memorial website in the memory of your loved one
His legacy
March 10,2012 What do i feel now!  
When thinking about Stephen some seven plus years later I realize how much of him lives on through me. I am surrounded by people now that mostly never knew Stephen but yet they do through me. I still miss him so much sometimes but there is always his presence that seems to be in my life where ever I go or what ever I am doing. I feel him here and at the farm and so many other places I am. I am in a happier place in my life now with more Peace and Beauty surrounding me. I have to laugh when I say that since I was right in the middle of an EF2 Tornado only a little over a week ago on March 2, 2012. I survived unharmed and again that gave me strength to know I am supposed to go on and live and live life well. Your presence is felt in my life all the time. I am grateful for what you have taught me both through the way you lived your life and what I have learned about me since your death. I have the incredible gift of laughter again which I used to share with you and others in the past. Even though at times I thought I would loose it I have been able to keep it. I also have the gift of love and caring that I share with friends that I have now and from the past. I am not afraid to love and care about the different people in my life and they know it, That is part of your legacy too. You were an incredibly wise son in your young years of life and taught me much about life, love and compassion. Thus I say that your legacy does live on through me and your brothers and even through people that never knew you. You never were afraid to jump in and do whatever needed to be done in any situation. What an example your life was. When people let go of balloons for your birthday or with me when I just need to watch one go up into the sky; your legacy lives on through me and through those other people. People that wondered what the heck I was doing have a new appreciateion for balloon launches! After all you never would keep a balloon because you liked to watch them sail into the sky! When I see a full moon your legacy lives on because I remember us singing " I see the moon the moon sees me, prettiest moon I ever did see. God made the moon and God made me, God made every thing you see!" That song goes through my head and your sweet little voice singing it does too. I will never forget singing " Devoted to you" at Brewsters when your friends where there for your 18th birthday and how you smiled and shot me a bird the whole time! Still have trouble with that song for Karaoke but thus your legacy lives on through me. I used to rock you to sleep when you were little singing that song along with a whole bunch of other ones. But because of that night it is hard for me to sing it because it is part of your Legacy. Well Son, I miss you but feel your presence all the time. I am proud to be your Mom. Your Legacy will live on through me and this website. I love you Stephen! Mom
31/2 Years later there is meaning  

As I sit here reflecting on my journey of the last 3 years and a little more I can't help but marvel at the fact that I have made meaning out of my son's death. So his legacy lives on through me. I have a passion to help other parents that are going through this experience as I have. More than that I have a passion to try to prevent what happened to my son happening to other teens. E. M. D. R is a trama victims treatment, it has been used in the Oklahoma City bombing and for other not so traumatic events in our lives. One of the uses is for people that were abused in some way as a child.
A lot of our children where victims of some kind of abuse in their lives, it may have been bully's sexual, physical or emotional abuse. What I have learned about E. M. D. R is that it helps us deal with the trauma in our lives. One personal story I heard was of a girl that was raped. Her father thought she was going to be a victim of suicide like my son but got her the E.M.D.R therapy and it saved her.

I am also a survivor of suicide because of that same treatment for trauma. Without it I do not think I would have come to an understanding of my own grief at losing my son to suicide. Especially because I was in my home when my son shot himself. I guess what Iris Bolton says in her book, "My Son, My Son" is true because as I have looked for the gifts my son's death would give me I have found them. I am a crusader for youthl. I am a crusader for parents that have been through this grief and I am a firm believer that in spite of the tremendous grief I feel at the loss of my son, I am a better person for having lived through it all. Trust me I mean lived! Sometimes fighting for every bit of life I could grasp but now realizing that I do have a full life. A wounded life but a life that is worth living.

My one question is this. Where is E. M. D. R in depression that may or may not be related to abuse in childhood with teens? Too many of them where abused in some manner, shape, or form in their childhoods. Could we  not make this treatment more avialable in the treatment of teen depression, especially if we have hints that it may be due to childhood trauma? After what that treatment has done for me and my other son that was there when Stephen killed himself it makes me think that if that could help me deal with the trauma's of my life and his how much more could it help a teen that is in desperate need of the abiltity to deal with trauma that has happened no matter how big or small.

Please check out the web site for the E.M.D.R Network at this location for more information on this form of trauma treatment:

http://www.emdrnetwork.org/

My son's legacy is this. Please help our teens deal with the trauma's that may have led them down this road to contemplate or complete suicide. I am now a crusader to try to help those that help teens be aware of this form of treatment and be there to listen to them when they feel totally helpless. As a parent it is hard for us to hear our children but we need to listen because they do need to be heard.


Dear Mom  
DEAR MOM

When you wonder the meaning of life and love
Know that I am with you,
Close your eyes and feel me kissing you
in the gentle breeze across your cheek.

When you begin to doubt that you will ever see me again
Quiet your mind and hear me,
I am in the whisper of the heavens
Speaking of your love.

When you lose your identity
When you question who you are and where you are going,
Open your heart and see me.
I am the twinkle in the stars smiling down upon you,
Lighting the path for your journey.

When you awaken each morning
Not remembering your dreams
But feeling content and serene
Know that I was with you ~
Filling your night with thoughts of me.

When you linger in the remnant pain
Wholeness seeming so unfamiliar
Think of me and
Know that I am with you,
Touching you through the shared tears of a gentle friend
Easing the pain.

As the sunrise illuminates the desert sky
In the breathtaking glory, awaken your spirit
Think of our time, all too brief, but ever brilliant.
When you were certain of us, together
When you were certain of your destiny

Know that God created that moment in time,
Just for Mom,
I am with you always.

Stephen Paraprased it I just found it looking through the console of my car. Romans 8:38 & 39  
Stephen's version:

I believe that nothing that has happened nor anything to come will seperate me from Jesus and His love.

Romans 8:38 and 39:

For I am convinced that neither death,  nor life, nor angels,  nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The Broken Chain  
We little knew that morning that
GOD was going to call your name.
In life we loved you dearly, in death
we do the same.

It broke our hearts to lose you, you did not go
alone; for part of us went with you,
The day GOD called you home.

You left us peaceful memories, your love
is still our guide; and though we
cannot see you, you are always at our
side.

Our family chain is broken,
and nothing seems the same;
but as GOD calls us one by one,
THE CHAIN will link again.

(Author unknown)


Mom's Legacy  
"I am a Survivor: Please bear with me

I am a Survivor. I am the Mother of a Suicide. My child killed himself, and
that fact is always just under the surface of everything else that exists.

Please be patient with me. Though it has been nearly a year, I am not the
same person I was, I doubt what I ever was, and what I am now is still
evolving. While I can look and sound quite regular, I am not.

If I had a broken leg, you would allow me some time to heal but yet accept
me when I tried to return to normal life. You would hold the door open for
me, walk a little more slowly to be with me, and still give me credit for
sense even as the regular things I used to accomplish had now become
strained and awkward.

I have a broken heart. I never anticipated this, never prepared for this. My
"cast," my support and protection while I mend, is your friendship and
understanding. Daily I find new ways to live and survive, but everything is
different, strained, evolving. I need you to recognize this. I need your
help in lots of little ways.

The brain is a mysterious thing as it tries to heal the heart. I focus on
forgetting, and it works too well. I forget where I set my keys, my shoes,
my purse. I forget your name, what we discussed last, what day it is, where
I left your phone number or address, whatever appointments I made. I forget
to cook, to eat, to tuck the tag into the back of my shirt or check the
mirror before I leave. I am embarrassed. I try to focus on remembering, and
I remember too well. My mind wanders while I am trying to listen to you.

Our friendship or our conversation reminds me of something he said or
something funny that happened to him, or the scent of the Autumn air reminds
me of the last season I spent with him. Your sons and your children and your
daily joys conflict me--I was once there where you are, or maybe I would
have been, if only... I feel guilty for short-shifting our friendship, after
all you have done for me.

Everything has changed. I am disabled but healing. My purse and briefcase
have been traded for a backpack to give me a measure of security over
misplacing them.

My keys are now tied to a string around my neck (when I can find them). My
freezer is full of quick frozen meals that I can whip up as effortlessly as
possible, if I have the energy to shop for them. I rely on medications to
shore up my thin veneer and keep me positive and almost normal-looking.
Sometimes I forget them, too.

Don't be afraid to ask me about or comment on what you see; I need your
perspective on anything, everything, my friend, because I am re-learning to
trust my own judgment again.

Once I was confident. I learned too late that my love for my child,
something I took for granted as simple and sacred and strong, was not strong
enough to hold him in the world I brought him into, and this loss has
shattered the very foundation of everything I've ever believed in.

I need to talk about what happened-I like it when you care enough to ask.
Don't be afraid you will say the wrong thing, and especially, don't become
anxious or uncomfortable if your tenderness or the memory of my child makes
me teary. This is simply the rain on the roses, and it will pass. If I am
ever to bloom again, this is as important as the sun, which does come
through these clouds more often as the months go by. You are helping me
heal.

I need to feel good. It's a struggle sometimes. When I begin to enjoy
myself, it is quickly interrupted by guilt. "how dare I laugh again when my
baby is dead?" "have I forgotten him so quickly that I can feel happy again
so soon?" "maybe I didn't REALLY love him enough, and that's what REALLY killed him..." These tapes are deadly.

These thoughts are a downward spiral. Help me drown out those painful
voices by reassuring me that life is for the living and I deserve to live
again. Remind me to have fun. Let me laugh with you and forget for a moment.

You will know when I am ready to talk. A genuine, "how are you doing?" will
bring one of two responses. If you get a quick, "great, fine, how are you?"
then probably I really am, and let's keep going from there. Please. If you
get a quiet, furtive, "fine, thank you." then I am probably NOT fine. Asking
"what can I do for you?" does not help. It will probably bring
"nothing-really-thanks anyway."

Here is what I really need: Encourage me. Listen to me. Do small normal
things for me that I may be too absorbed to do for myself. Help me care for
my family. bring dinner. Drop by and feed my cat. Drop by and bring me
lunch, or tea, or chocolate (lots of chocolate) or share an evening with me
just visiting. Ignore the state of my house when you arrive-it mirrors the state of mylife. Water my plants.

Lend a hand where you can. Get somebody to mow my lawn or rake my leaves or offer to drive the kids to their appointments. Remind me of my appointments..

Cover for me if I am not where I should be and then go looking for me. Ask
me out, take me out, get me out.

Let's go do normal things, like shopping or folding laundry at your house or
going to a meeting together or hot-tubbing on a Saturday night. Help me
rediscover the satisfaction and even joy that everyday life brings. Believe
me, I am acutely aware that every moment is precious.

Check in with my children-they are hurting, too. Encourage them to talk and
heal. Pizza and an ear helps. Help me keep an eye on them when they are out
of my sight. Feel free to be a friend or to "parent" them, too. They are
just as disoriented as I am. They are also at risk. They are survivors who
have lost both their sibling and the stability of a home they once knew.

Treat us like any other survivor of a fatal illness, always living in a
tentative, strange remission between the lost past and the ever present
fearful new possibility that another child, another someone we love will
shock us again. We are not contagious, except for that first excruciatingly painful moment when it dawns on you that this could happen to your child or someone you love, too.

Treat us just as you would a cancer survivor over the long term, with
respect, support, tolerance; expecting and riding through setbacks yet
forging ahead to make every day just a little bit more pleasant.

Our Angel died only once. Survivors of suicide die a 1000 deaths.

William Shakespeare once described: "Grief fills up the room of my absent
child, Lies in his bed, Walks up and down with me, Puts on his pretty looks,
Repeats his words." Macbeth left brave advice: "Give sorrow words. grief has
need to speak, lest whisper o'er the fraught heart and bid it break."

My grief has need to speak, and each time I am fortunate enough to be
allowed to talk and share or speak to help spare someone else this sorrow, I
gain a renewed strength that heals my heart. I am honored that somehow Grace gives me a voice to explain all this.

Daily I am reclaiming some bit of treasure from this tragedy, and my broken
heart mends just a bit more. Please bear with me.

Copyright - Holland Rainey, Mother of Nicholas Kemp May 17, 1986- November
13, 2002, Forever 16."

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