Friday, July 19, 2013

Dear Brynn

Dear Brynn,

Today I heard about a 14 year old boy who drowned in the Black Warrior River, and the first thing I thought was, "That could have been you." His friends tried to save him, but they couldn't. That family, mourning the death of a beloved child, that could have been us. Your daddy says that he feels like he just can't thank God enough for sparing your life. I truly understood that today when I heard about young Jamal Harris. Everyone doesn't have a happy ending to their story, but you do. How could we ever thank God enough?!

So, Brynn, I just wanted you to know how special you are and how important it is that you follow God's calling for your life. See, He has BIG plans for you, girl! From your curls as wild as you are to your little suntanned bare feet, God is going to use you! You have already brought so much joy to everyone around you! You are so full of life! I call you a "wild child," a little girl with a HUGE personality, full of spunk! I don't think you ever learned to walk. You ran everywhere from day one. No fear! It's a good thing you have such a great big brother because it takes him, your mommy, and your daddy to keep track of you! Mixed in with all that "spunk" is a precious heart of gold. You give away your toys to try to make others happy. You give the absolute sweetest hugs and kisses! Oh, and don't let me hear your sweet little raspy voice sing praises to God! There is no sweeter sound! I could totally see why God would want you in Heaven. You are the life of the party! But, He let us keep you here, and I don't want you to ever forget that! You have an important job left to do here!

The week it happened we all just cried and cried every time we talked about it. Your mommy said your floaties were hurting you, so she took them off and told you to stay in the baby pool. When she and Aunt Laura started getting rocks and dirt and grass slung on them from a weed-eater, they turned to grab all their stuff and move. Then, your brave friend, Jack, came up and told them you were under the water. Your mommy ran over to the pool and saw you under water, not even struggling. Aunt Laura says she will never forget that look on your mommy's face. That's when the panic set in, but your mommy was such a hero! She jumped in and got you out. She immediately started doing CPR. You were already blue and they don't know how long you were not breathing. Several other mommies called 9-1-1, and they all thought it was too late. Your brother, Alec, your cousin, Cooper, and Cooper's friend, Pearson, knew there was only one person who could help. They gathered in the corner and began to pray. I told your mommy how great it was that she was able to stay calm and remember the steps to CPR. She said she was not calm. She was just screaming for someone, anyone to help her! She said there were so many people around, but she felt completely alone. Everyone was horrified, but she was the only mother there who was going to have to plan a funeral for her three year old. Finally, you started breathing again! God put air back into those small little lungs. Everyone was so relieved! People who saw what happened said that they will never be the same. The presence of God was at the Forest Glen pool that day, and He was breathing life back into you! You got to ride in an ambulance, and when the doctors checked you out, you were fine! You had no water in your lungs, no signs of brain damage, not even a bruise or scratch from the CPR! We met for lunch the next day, and you were running around like usual, telling me how you "went under water and it was gross!" There we all were, crying at the table, your mommy and Aunt Laura still unable to eat, and the background music was the sound of your little sandals doing laps around that Taco Casa dining room.

Brynn, I don't know why God chose to protect your life that day. I don't know why we are celebrating your life while others are in absolute despair. I do know that the Bible says, "In all things God works for the good of those who love him." If we were mourning your loss, I honestly don't think that verse would give me any comfort. It's hard to imagine anything that could comfort me in the face of such a tragedy. But, comfort or not, truth is truth, and I pray that we always remember that God can take even the worst things we can imagine and use them for good.

With all the love and gratefulness in my heart,

Aunt Lindsey (LiLi)

I dedicate this post to the family of Jamal Harris and other families who have lost their children to the tragedy of drowning. May God wrap his loving arms around you and give you peace. For He also knows what it is like to lose a child.


  1. Hard to read but glad you wrote it. And the last pic on here is hilarious!

  2. Lindsey that brought all the emotion back and tears to my eyes, but I couldn't agree more. We are so blessed to still have Brynn here with us. You have such a great way with words! Thanks for sharing this. I know Brynn will be touched when she can read this one day for herself. We love you LiLi!

    1. Thanks, Jamie! I know it was hard to read because it was hard for me to write! I just had the words in me and needed to share. Love y'all too!

    2. Read this again today Lindsey on the one year anniversary. Still brings years to my eyes. So glad you took the time to write this, so we can always reference it and continue to thank God. Love you guys