Sharing my mourning journey as my family learns to live a new normal after the death of my 19 y.o. son in an auto accident on 10/12/08.

Banner at Jordan's tree dedication, August 2009-his 20th birthday

Dear Jordan,

I woke up around 5:45 this morning because I thought I heard your cellphone alarm. In the distance I heard your signature ringtone of the flute interlude from the “The Boondocks” show. Merrick still loves that show by the way. I watch it with him sometimes but he doesn’t laugh as long or as hard as he did when the two of you watched it together.

When I heard your ringtone I sat up in bed and my first thought was, “I wonder why Jordan’s getting up so early.” That moment was fleeting as I became fully awake and realized I’d only dreamed hearing your phone. Even still, I lay back on my pillow, closed my eyes and smiled remembering all the times you were just down the hall. I couldn’t sleep after dreaming of you being so close but I wouldn’t trade that moment of fuzzy awareness when I thought you were safely home even though I did have to let it go.

Today is your birthday and I’ve been thinking so much in the past week about all the things I imagine you’d be doing with your life. In my mind you’ve told me about your semester abroad in London and your travels in Europe. Right now you would be planning what countries you want to visit in Africa as you prepare for your Senior year in college. Watching your friends mature and settle in on various interests gives me a portal into what things you might be doing now. Kathryn keeps in touch and has been so kind and giving to our family. I see why you liked her so much. She like you is a Political Science major. I can imagine the long talks you two would have about how you planned to change the world. Matt, Billy, Luc, Quinn, Pat and Sam come to visit regularly. They keep us updated on their lives and take special interest in what’s going on with us, especially your siblings. They are amazing young men. Some of them have started a music production company and have “dropped”(I’m learning the lingo) two albums. They have enfolded Merrick into their group and he has done a couple of songs with them. Their love for you shows in the care they give your brother.

I watched that crazy YouTube video, “Charlie Bit Me,” this morning. When I was on my computer it popped up on the Huffington Post site and I couldn’t help but click on it. I laughed as I watched it, remembering when you first showed it to us. I don’t know how many times we watched the video that summer but I do remember all of us taking on British accents as we conversed in the house. The laughter and fun you brought into our home will always linger. Rarely a day passes that your brother and sisters don’t start a sentence with, “Remember when Jordan….” We all miss you. Learning how to live as a family of 5 when in our hearts we are forever 6 is so hard. We keep going fueled in part by our love for each other and the love and sweet memories you gave us.

Today, August 9, 2010 I’m struck by how much I anticipated seeing you turn 21. Your birth date is 8.9.89 and today, 8.9.10, I can imagine you proclaiming in your deep voice how incredible you are because of the way the numbers aligned for you. I realize that all of your milestone birthdays have been milestones for me as well given you’re my oldest child. You taught me what “5” looked like, what to expect with a teenager and the thrills that come with 16 and 18. Even though 19 was the last birthday we shared with you on this earth, what a milestone it has become. I want you to know how much you are loved and missed. We will celebrate today, this day, because it gave us you. Happy birthday Jordan



Jordan celebrating his 19th birthday with his siblings


Comments on: "To Jordan On His 21st Birthday" (8)

  1. Happy Happy Birthday Jordan – the superstar I never met but am enjoying “meeting” and getting to know through the loving words of his mother. You are all in our thoughts today as we bathe you in a golden bubble of love and light! Peace to you all!

    PS….Now let’s take that wonderful Jordan energy and go change the world together! XO

  2. Happy Birthday, Jordan. Jackie, I send my hopes for your peace.

  3. Ann Arthur Andrew said:

    Happy Birthday dear Jordan and peace and blessings to your family.

  4. Happy Birthday, beautiful Jordan. And happy birth-day, Jackie– a celebration of the day you were born anew as a mother. I so wish your Jordan were here to celebrate it with you, and you with him. I hope the day itself has been more of a blessing than you anticipated.

  5. Oh my. What a heartwarming, heartbreaking letter to your son. Happy Birthday Jordan.

  6. Jackie,

    I hope that on Jordan’s birthday and every day you are able to feel the joy and love and laughter that is beaming from the pictures you posted. I thought of Jordan and the whole family on 8-9-10 and will contine wish you all nothing but the very best.

  7. Jackie,
    I pray that you felt all the love that Jordan had for you on this day.

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