For her children

Dear friends,

I keep wanting to sit down here at my computer and write about Sarah.  I want to replay the past three years and write it down so I don’t forget.  But every time I start to think about it, I fall apart.  I want to sit and copy and paste three years worth of emails from her into a word document, print it, and bind it.  But I can’t yet.

I think I hurt a friend’s feelings yesterday because of my manner on the phone with her.  I’m keeping it together right now because I have to.  There are those who are suffering far more than I am.  This friend commented that I was in “Admin Ginny” mode.  Yes, during the day I am.  At night, I sob.   I hear her voice, her words to me on the telephone, just hours before I got another phone call, from another friend, telling me that Sarah was on her way to the hospital, no pulse, not breathing.

Sarah’s funeral is on Friday.  Her birthday is Saturday.  Last night, together with Sarah’s husband Eric, their family, and a few close friends, we planned her funeral.  I’ve attended my fair share of funerals, but I’ve never played a part in planning one.

I am reading your emails, your comments, all of it.  I know how hard it is to reach out to someone, especially someone you only know via the internet, at a time like this.  It’s impossible to know the right thing to say, and it is brave to reach out with your words, however imperfect and inadequate they might feel.  I get it.  I’m with you.  And your words are helping to hold me up.

Last night while we sat around the table, Sarah’s parents choosing readings for her funeral Mass, me writing them down, her younger brother was working to set up a fundraising site for the future of Sarah and Eric’s children.  Their children are my children’s friends.  Their future is very important to me.  So, I am going to ask you to give, even it all you can share is five bucks.  Eric needs our help.   Sarah’s babies need us.  They need strangers to do the brave thing and give, and write that they care.  They don’t fully understand what has happened.  They are still babies.  I watched them say goodbye to their mommy, with innocent smiles on their faces.  I don’t know if they noticed that all the adults in the room were crying.  I helped Sarah’s oldest son, seven years old, tape a card he had made for Sarah on the wall.  It simply read, “Mommy and Liam.”  He had drawn two stick figures, the taller one sheltering the smaller one with her arm.

One day they will look back at this time, and they will realize that people from all over the world banded together to pray for their mommy, for their daddy, and for them.  They will know that God used all of us, together, to carry them through this.

Thank you so much for caring.  Thank you so much for giving.

Love,

Ginny

(photo credit Lori Elizabeth)

(photo credit Lori Elizabeth)

(photo credit Eric Harkins)

(photo credit Sarah Harkins)

(photo credit:  a stranger.  On our last girls’ night out together)

And finally, from that same night, a photo of my best girls taken by me:

Please pray for Sarah (updated)

sarah (photo credit Lori Elizabeth)

Sarah and baby Cecilia passed away last night. Please continue to pray for her family.

One of my best friends is in the hospital on life support.  She was attacked by what we believe were yellow jackets and had an allergic reaction.  Further tests revealed a ruptured aneurysm on her brain.  She is 21 weeks pregnant with her fifth child, a baby girl named Cecilia.  Please join me in praying for Sarah, her husband Eric, and their children, Liam, Annalee, Jude, Faustina, and tiny Cecilia.  Friends and family are saying goodbyes while praying and hoping for a miracle.