Dear Amelia…


You’ve been gone for a month now and I miss you more than the day that you died. I never thought I’d be 25 years old mourning the death of my only daughter. I thought about other things like being 30 years old and taking my five year old daughter on an ice cream date. I thought about taking you fishing, and I thought about walking you down the aisle at your wedding. It seems weird to think about walking you down the aisle at your wedding because you were only six months old when you left us. It didn’t feel weird though when I thought about it. It made me feel so proud of you. I imagined you in your early twenties and as beautiful as could be, like your momma. I would’ve loved the opportunity to hang out with your husband and treat him like another son. I imagine camping trips with you and your brothers and their wives and all of the little kids you would all have. It seems weird to imagine life as a grandparent when I’m still only 25 but I believe that if you can envision it, it will come to fruition…at least most of the time.

The truth is that I’ll never be able to take you to a father daughter dance, I’ll never get to walk you down the aisle at your wedding and we’ll never go fishing or camping together. That breaks my heart and it doesn’t seem real yet. It can’t be real that you’re really gone. It hasn’t settled in that you are never coming back. Every day since you moved on to your eternal home every phone call I got I thought might be the hospital telling me that they made a mistake, that you were just in a coma but that you had recovered. Even now, after we’ve picked up your cremated remains, I still have a small hope that you’ll come back.

I hear you cry in your room but you’re not there, I can sense your smell but it’s just your worn clothes in the hamper that we can’t bring ourselves to wash. I see your smile but it’s just my mind playing cruel tricks on me. I’m so thankful we still have your brothers. Beckham and Maverick miss you more than is possible to vocalize in their limited vocabulary. Mav will walk around the house looking for you and when we show him videos or pictures of you he thinks he is talking to you on FaceTime, he seems confused but happy at the chance to talk to you. Beckham has become angrier at little things and prone to throw a fit when he doesn’t get his way, which is exactly what we were told would happen, but at the end of the day, when he’s tucked away in bed, he’ll softly whisper to us that he misses you, he’ll ask us when you’re coming back and it breaks my heart to have to explain to him that you’re never coming back. It’s so hard to help him understand that one day he’ll see you again, but that before that day comes it will be several years of waiting.

The mornings and the nights are the hardest. It used to be that while I would get ready for work in the morning you would make mommy up around 7 so I got a chance to kiss you goodbye every morning. Now that doesn’t happen and I stand in the kitchen for several minutes staring at the wall waiting to hear that morning greeting from you in the form of a soft cry that will never come again. At night your mommy and I were used to following a strict schedule to make sure you slept enough, but now we can’t even keep ourselves on a sleep schedule because we stay up too late talking about you and laying in bed with your blankets, soaking them with our tears, wondering when we will get to see you again.

In the last month we haven’t become angry with God, maybe those days will come, but for now we are working hard in our hearts to trust in God’s plan, whatever it may be, and to believe that His plan is for our good. His plan for our life is to bring glory to His name. I have tried to comfort myself by reasoning that God himself also had a child die, but then I remember that child was a 33 year old man when it happened and he rose from the dead three days later. You on the other hand, as much as I want you back, you’re not coming back. This is it. We had our time with you and now it’s over. It’s a gut-wrenching, stomach-curdling feeling that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.

It’s hard to go back to work and not become angry with people when they are rude to me, but to just hold it inside and pretend everything is ok. It’s hard to come home expecting to see you, only to remember that you’re not there. Amelia, if I could have one thing in the world it wouldn’t be fame or fortune, it would be to simply have you back, even just for a moment.

I know one thing Amelia and that is that God loves you. You were created in His holy and perfect image. He called you chosen and set apart. There are so many unanswered questions; would you have ever had enough physical strength? I don’t know what life would’ve been like with your many ailments, which your momma and I just treated as opportunities to trust God, but I can’t imagine it would’ve been perfect. What I do know beyond a shadow of a doubt is that you are now healed. You ARE perfect. You are whole. There is nothing that can take that away.

I can just imagine your cooing smile and your long fingers as you hold yourself up. You can now do so many things that you weren’t able to do here. It’s still so early but I’m starting to realize that you are in a better place. I’m just saddened I have to wait so long to see you again.

I love you Amelia.



4 thoughts on “Dear Amelia…

  1. Jamie Roberts says:

    Peter, that was truly beautiful. I am grateful that you are able to find the words. You and your young family have been in my mind and in my heart. I pray that you will find strength to continue on.


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