Sunday, April 23, 2017


Dear Jacob,

I am at peace tonight. I had a beautiful, peaceful day remembering you. Your dad and I ventured out on the bike path to Boulder for the first time. We got to Boulder a little quicker than we thought, and we realized we had some more time we could kill before heading back home. We decided to bike up to Flagstaff amphitheater to visit with you. That hill always gets to me, and as it got hard I ran your name through my mind. I know I always find peace at the top of that mountain.

As we got up to your special place, sweaty and with tired legs, I saw a beautiful vase of flowers at the center of the amphitheater. A wedding was about to happen. We only had a few minutes to visit with you in order to not disrupt the wedding ceremony. I dangled my legs over the edge, and took in the view, took in the smells of spring morning, and felt as I was sitting on top of the world seeing the road we just climbed up in the far distance. I took in all the places where I know your ashes are. This place will always be a piece of you, and I am so very happy that this is your very special place. It gives me so much peace.

We got home a little later from the bike ride than I expected, so we rushed over to Children's for their memorial service honoring the children who have passed. We got a seat in the back, and quickly waved to a dear friend who is on this journey with us. If I would use one word to describe today's service it is heartfelt. Everyone spoke from their heart, and having a personal relationship with so many of them, made my cheeks wet from tears. It gave me comfort and sadness to hear your hospital will forever remember our children. This was your place when you were not home. This was your second home. It felt right to remember you right there.

I especially connected with this poem read during the service:

To Honor You

To honor you, I get up every day and take a breath.
And start another day without you in it.
To honor you, I laugh and love with those who knew
your smile and the way your eyes twinkled with
mischief and secret knowledge.
To honor you, I take the time to appreciate everyone
I love. I know now there is no guarantee of days or 
hours spent in their presence.
To honor you, I listen to music you would have liked,
and sing at the top of my lungs, with the windows
rolled down.
To honor you, I take chances, say what I feel, hold 
nothing back, risk making a fool of myself, dance
every dance.
You were my light, my heart, my gift of love, from
the very highest source. So every day, I vow to make 
a difference, share a smile, live, laugh,and love,
Now, I live for us both, so all I do, I do to honor you.

By Connie Kiefer Boyd

After the service, it was time to send balloons to you and all the other children. The fight for life helicopter just arrived as it was time to send off our balloons. It delayed the release a little, but also put in perspective what this hospital is all about. A very sick child just arrived to the hospital needing care. And then off went the green balloons into the sky. I follow your balloon for as long as I could knowing you would find it on the other side.

I am so happy we went to the service. It was a beautiful afternoon honoring you and so many other children at a place that gave you so many years of life. The hugs were heartfelt, and so special. It means so very much to me that we all can still be a part of Children's. Sweet Jacob, you don't need this hospital any longer, but we do. We very much do.

After the memorial service, it was time to meet Sarah at Macy's. She and her friend were trying on prom dresses for Children's Prom coming up in a few weeks. Jacob, your sister is working through her own feelings about you and this hospital by the work she is doing on the Youth Advisory Council and soon entering another summer volunteering at the hospital. She could decide to never put a foot in the hospital again, but she keeps coming back. It was fun to watch the girls try on endless dresses, and both leaving with a big smile as they found their first prom dress. Your sister is beautiful.

I so needed a day remembering you. It was filled with people and places I love. And right in the center, there was you.

Sweet Jacob, I love you to the moon and back. I do miss you dearly.


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