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.

Waiting For The Repairman

Does anyone remember those, “Baby on Board,” signs that were prevalent in the late ‘80’s and ‘90’s? They seemed to be suction cupped to the window of every other car on the road. I thought about those signs this morning and how I never got one after Jordan was born because it seemed to me that people should drive safely regardless of whether there was a baby in the car or not.


We’re still waiting to see if the video camera we sent in for repair will come back to us with images of Jordan in the last months before he died. The repairman called again recently to say that they needed to repair the motherboard and wanted our approval because they couldn’t guarantee that our hard drive wouldn’t be lost. If the hard drive is lost in the process of repairing the machine we lose the footage that’s on the camera. When the repairman asked what I wanted to do, proceed, or not with the repairs, my response was silence, then a heavy sigh and then a plea.

“The hard drive holds footage of our son. He was killed in a car accident. We need it.”

“Ma’am, I can’t guarantee that the hard drive won’t be damaged. Can you have your husband call me back and tell me what you want to do?”

Another long silence as I try to keep the tears out of my voice.

“Um, I’m not sure what we should do. I’ll have my husband call you.”

“Thank you, Ma’am.”

Mark called the repair center and told them to go ahead with the repairs. This morning while I showered I thought about the camera and visualized the repairs being done, hoping that they’re being extra careful so we have more memories of Jordan. I finally shook my head and thought, “Whether you have the footage or not, Jordan’s still gone. Stop putting so much importance on the camera. It doesn’t bring Jordan back.”

I realized how ridiculous it was that I’d poured my heart out to the repairman as though with my camera he’d be extra careful and more professional and with everyone else’s repairs he did slipshod work. That’s how I got to the baby on board signs in my meandering way. I would hope that the repairman always does his best work, just like when I saw the, “Baby on Board,” signs I hoped that everyone drove responsibly. Now I wish I’d wrapped the car Jordan was riding in on October 12th, 2008 in, “MY BABY ON BOARD,”signs and that doing so would have kept him alive. There are no magic formulas of protection or safety. I’m sitting with that harsh reality and waiting again for a box in the mail.

Comments on: "Waiting For The Repairman" (3)

  1. Jackie–I’ve been continuing to think about you and your family even though I have not posted for awhile…as a fellow Midwesterner I’ve commiserated after hearing about you dealing with the effects of this winter’s storm. Also, I’ve been meaning to tell you that I thought of Jordan while watching President Obama’s State of the Union address a few weeks ago when he mentioned the new credit card reforms that took effect this past year. I know you had said that Jordan worked on that during an internship, and that was a reminder to me of the legacy of Jordan that lives on.
    Sending good thoughts to you and your family, always. Please continue writing.
    Tracy M.

  2. Oh, Jackie, I wish it were not so. I’m so, so sorry. Your beautiful writing and gracious living leave me breathless, once again.
    Sending HUGE hugs.

  3. RibbitBliss said:

    I truly hope that the footage is saved in the repair of your camera. I thought of you as I process the recent death of my cousin. He died suddenly in his sleep. No foul play. They are calling it natural causes but he was too young for that! My uncle found his son. While I grieve for my cousin and his missed opportunities, I so grieve for my aunt and uncle who are now faced with burying their child and moving on through life without their only son. Blessings to all moms and dads that must face this tragedy.

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