This is the first full week without my cousin Shawn here on earth.
This past week has been full of emotions. I have cried way more than I ever would have wanted to.
I have looked inward way more than I wanted to. But God has also spoken to me. And He did it through my cousins funeral.
My cousin Shawn passed away on Saturday March 14 2009 from cancer. He fought a couragous battle. His wife and kids went through trials way bigger than we can think of.
Going to my cousins funeral was eye opening to how much I did not know about him or his family. That made me really sad. I learned more about Shawn in an hour and a half than the 32 years I had previously.
Something his brother and one of the partners at the law firm that he worked at said openend my eyes. Live your priorities.
So often we don't do that. We stay at work one more hour (which Shawn did not do, family came first), or we pass an opportunity to spend time with the kids (Shawn did not do that either, Him and his Daughter went to a daddy/daughter dance just a couple of months back, Shawn new that he was not going to make it much longer at that dance. Brad (the co-worker) said that Shawn and Madelyn danced all night and Shawn told Brad that the dance was his chance to dance with his daughter since he would miss the prom and her wedding.
So hard to hear but definitley needed. I know it opened my eyes, especially since we have been dealing with a 17 year old that has made life just more than a little frustrating. But after that I have to learn to let that go and love her beside the attitude she may give me or her daddy. I have to remember that God has her and I need to let go.
Going to funerals is never easy, but going to a funeral of a 38 year old man with a young family seems to be harder than going to a funeral for an older person (say in their 90's).
But God was not surprised by this. He knew exactly when Shawn would come home. He knew exactly when Lori (wife) would be "ready" to be with out him, at least until Heaven, He knew exactly when Madelyn and Blake would be able to understand and remember times with Him.
God is good even when we don't want to give people up God holds us up especially when we don't think we can hold ourselves up.
When God is all we have we realize that God is all we need.
As hard as it will be for Lori, Madelyn, Blake, My unlcle and aunt, and my other cousin (Dewey (this is a nickname, from Shawn,) his wife and three kids God will be there to comfort them in times of need, like Easter coming up. Or Madelyn's birthday the day after they buried her daddy. Christmas at Grandma's house (which was the last time I saw him, gave him lots of hugs glad I went this year) wedding anniversaries.
One thing that we can take from this is cherish every moment. Nothing is worth missing out on any thing because of pride or selfishness or just plain ignorance.
Live every moment to the full.
I know that I am going to try to be a better person, more calm, even tempered, leaning on God way more than I have been.
Saturday March 21, 2009 I read a CaringBridge update by Lori, a week after Shawn had passed, It made me cry, but also allowed me to see how I should react to situations that come my way that God orchestrated.
Blake got up on Friday and asked Lori how Daddy was. This caught Lori off guard, but she answered him and told him that Daddy was in Heaven with Jesus and He is fine now. No longer hurting or sick. Blake threw his arms up in the air and shouted "HOORAY!!!" "HOORAY!!!".
If we could just have that reaction everytime that God does something in our life whether good our bad.
Lessons are learned everywhere you look.
Shawn I will miss you. I love you, I am just sorry I never got the chance to tell you this side of the Jordan. I am proud to call you cousin. Can't wait to see you again.