Sunday, September 12, 2010


Sarah and I in Charleston April 2010, our last trip there

I'm going to preface this entry by telling you this is the last entry I am going to write about my Sarah for awhile , it is really getting hard to write about her and I know for you readers difficult too. But about two months before her fatal accident, I was talking to her at the house about a few things I wanted to write about...and one of those was about her. She perked up and said , " What ? " I said I was going to title it,  ' My Daughter /My Mirror ' , and write about how we were so much alike , and she interrupted me and goes , " Do it ! "..and ' Write your book. "
She was my biggest encourager , her and her sister.
Sarah in 2007-Look at those eyes.

So , closing in on what would have been her 22nd birthday in a few days, I wanted to go ahead and write it.  Birthdays are big in our family , and this week will be painful. The point of the title was not just how alike we were, and I will tell you those qualities, not all good for sure...but true about us. But how all parents have a child that is like their mirror or uses them as a mirror and reflects back themselves to them, and vice versa. Usually that child is the one that is the most difficult for a time for you to get along with, because you are so much alike. But also it is the one that you understand so well, as you have walked in their shoes, have the same habits, same preferences, etc. The point about them being our mirror, is they reflect back to you, your shared weaknesses, strengths, dreams and hopes. They reflect back in their actions, the lessons they learned through talks you have had , and through the common mistakes and errors in judgment that we humans all have. Oftentimes they reflect certain physical gestures, postures, walks, looks, etc....that we pass down through generations.  We look at them, and see ourselves...a younger version of ourselves, right before our eyes.  We see in them such possibilities, such promise. Once they get in their twenties, you start to see it even more.
Sarah and I knew we were very much alike, we joked about it , I believe she was happy  and proud that we were alike. If she was happy, it made me happy, if she was made me sad. The flip side of that is it worked in reverse , she would get very sad if I was . She loved to see me happy.
Sarah in Charleston, loving up some dog, she loved animals

I will first start out by explaining how we were very much alike . We were both , and it is very hard to write ' were ' when I want to naturally write ' are ' alike. But since she is no longer with any of us, I have to use ' were' . We both love to dance, and both love or HAVE to exercise. I am a big power walker, she was a runner. We were both not remotely neat-nicks at home, but she had become neater since she moved out in her own apartment. ( disclaimer , I am much better at yardwork than housework ).
We were both territorial-jealous-protective about the ones ( men), we love and where their attention is.
Not a great quality, but true about us.

We both love romance, anything remotely romantic made us sigh, ohh and ahh.
We both were very physical , demonstrative, affectionate with the ones we love. That was mine and Sarah's top love language-touch.
We were both picky about being healthy when we eat, though she was a Dove chocolates fanatic ( any chocolate ), and she loved desserts, but felt guilty after she ate them. She was overly concerned about gaining weight . That point makes me very sad now. That was something she mainly got from the media and magazines, but me being so big about exercise and eating healthy probably did not help her with that  mis-perception she had about herself. I would say the lesson here , for mothers to daughters, don't focus too much on food at all. Share a meal, make it healthy, if you have dessert, just enjoy it...less, " I now have to run 4 miles to burn this off " talk.
Sarah to the right, running in the Marine Mud Run 2009

I do not believe she ever knew that she was as beautiful as she was. I know many women do not know how beautiful they are, but she was off the charts beautiful, and never realized it completely. She would have the insecurities that have been inbred in women for the last 60 years or so, the not-thin enough, fit -enough, sexy -enough, smart -enough, and even more garbage drilled in her head...and I would tell her continually, that she ( and her sister ), were two of the most beautiful women I had ever seen.
Very true. 
She was also so full of ' life ', we have had many people tell us that about her over her lifetime.
Getting kissed on the cheek by her roommate 2009

 She would always tell me I was beautiful, always. I think we believed it from each other , but not from other people, we were alike in that way too. I know that we believed it from each other, because we knew how much the other loved us. I do not doubt Sarah knew how much I loved her, and her love towards me was evident in her eyes and her words to me.

A birthday trip for her in Charleston Sept. 2008

In this way, I pray and beg each of you parents, grandparents , tell your children they are beautiful --inside and out--compliment them, build up their confidence in not only their outward appearance but their evident skills they possess. Also , do it with your daughters especially, as if you don't they will gravitate towards someone who will tell them that. And often , for women, that someone is using the words to seduce and not nurture.
Husbands, also tell your wives daily, yes daily...appreciate your wife's beauty. 
Tell them how much they are loved. 
Posing in 2009 , Oct. for me on the Battery

 Sarah and I also were pretty goofy in general , laughed at the absurdness of circumstances , laughed at ourselves. I used to be very ' fun' , softer than I am , and vivacious. She was like that very much. She and I also rush too much, we rushed everywhere, hard to slow us down, I have slowed down..with age of course...but she was always on the go. Until she started pouting about something, and that quality she may ( definitely ), got from me too. She and I could whine and pout up a storm when the mood struck. The really neat thing about that though, is between the two of us, if one was pouting, the other was one of the ONLY people to get us to stop. I would either tell her to keep her chin up , or make fun of the situation to make her laugh, or commiserate, I usually picked the right one for the right time. In return, she mainly sympathized with me , or ranted with me. Both worked.

Hugging when she made me a birthday dinner June 2010

Sarah and I are also encouragers, with family, friends, strangers. A quality , or gift I believe from God, that is one of those typical gifts that is not usually reciprocated by whomever we encourage.  I know she did have good friends, I am not trying to discount how they treated her..I know many encouraged her, she was just so special in her enthusiasm when she was trying to pull someone out of a slump. She needed lots of encouragement, and I do not believe got as much as she dished out, because she truthfully needed more than most people do. But that is how God works through us, our gifts are not for our benefit , but for the benefit of others.
On the windy Battery in Charleston Oct. 2009

The best quality about Sarah, that is part of her legacy, is the quality of being very , very loving. She and I differ here. I am very selective who I love...I have not truly loved many people . Sarah was all out there' love everybody '..until they crossed her somehow...but otherwise she gave everybody the benefit of the doubt and told probably hundreds of people that she loved them. Friends, co-workers, boyfriends and of course family. She was also very friendly, much friendlier than I am...we would go to Charleston and would walk around, I would smile at people when we passed them, sometimes say , ' Hi. "
Sarah on the other hand would smile and say , " Hi, how are you today ? " I would fuss at her and tell her if it was a couple she said it to, the woman was not happy as Sarah was so young and beautiful. Or if it was a single man walking, he might think she was interested in him. I was always trying to protect her. To teach her.  Always.
Sarah and me in her big sister's apartment in Virginia 2008 , fun visit

She then would turn right back at me, and say, " You're just being mean and unfriendly ! " I told her very beautiful women ( her ), need to be careful in this world. "
By the way, that never stopped her from being very friendly, that stubborn streak she gets from  me, that very friendly streak from her dad.

Rachel and Sarah-my two daughters May 2010

Sarah and I also stood up if we saw injustice , or if someone needed help, we both would not just stand by if we were somewhere and noticed someone needed help, with opening a gate, with a package, with a rude waiter , with a mean co-worker , or with a stranger.

Sarah also was different from me, so much less jaded, from her youth and from her basic personality...she believed that most people were good still. I am more leery, more cautious with people. She had recently become more jaded about men, but I knew that would happen soon.

So you see, it is painful to have my daughter, my little reflection , be forever out of my sight. To not only not be able to see her, but I wanted so much to help her , to help her see how beautiful and loved she was. She never knew that she was loved by so many people. I also wanted to keep encouraging her for her future, I saw such potential and promise in her..and told her so many times. I would tell her, " I wish I was you... young , beautiful, on the cusp of life still. " And she would always respond, " I wish I was you ",  back to me. She would get depressed , many of her friends were surprised to hear this, but her very close friends and boyfriends knew this about her .
That quality she and I also shared. But super-sensitive people, get that way.
Charleston, SC Oct. 2008 we were about to go checking out the city

Another way we were different, is Sarah had a guy's sense of humor, she thought if one of her friends fell down or accidentally hurt themselves , that it was funny. You know , not seriously hurt, but you know how guys laugh when they get hurt around each other...she would too. I told her many times she had a guy's sense of humor and she would laugh. She also liked different music than I do, but that is normal for our age difference, though she did like country...and I still like some country if it isn't too corn-bally or twangy.

Sarah and I in Charleston , about to go eat Sept. 2008 , a birthday treat for her

This entry has turned out different than I would have written it if she was alive, and writing that sentence makes me cry...but I cannot change the fact that she is gone. I know that in my other children, I see reflections of myself, especially in my other daughter , Rachel, who I will write an entry about soon.
But Sarah was my baby, our last little one came 12 years after her, so she was my baby, my youngest of my children,  way before he was born.
Me and baby Sarah-circa 1989

I know that I am blessed to have my other three children still, I am grateful...but I can tell you, they do not replace her, they cannot. And she could not replace one of them if they died.
Each of my children, each of them I consider the best contribution of my life to this world.

I am going to end this entry with a happy memory , of Sarah, down below, there she was dressed up as Madonna for the 25th anniversary gala for the restaurant she worked at.
Sarah waitressing 2009 California Dreaming

I was very lucky to find these pictures of her on her facebook page, and one of her friend's facebook page. Some of our happiest times were going out to eat there, about twice a month, sometimes I went once a week awhile back...but we were going less to save money off eating out , and because her dad always left her such gigantic tips we couldn't afford to go out much ! Anyway, I found the picture below, you see her waiting on us, my husband with his back, and you don't see her little brother to the left of my husband, but he was always there.

 That picture really gets to me, because she LOVED and appreciated so much when we came in . I was shocked and thrilled to find this picture , as it captures a moment in all of our lives there. A very joyful time, we had a great time that night. I was excited to see her there, every time we came . She would always hug her dad and me , and tell us she loved us. She made my life exceedingly happier , joyful life.

My precious reflection, I will love you forever and ever and ever.

Love strong,



  1. I read and looked over all of the beautiful entries and photographs of your beloved daughter. It rings to true for our children to be mirror images of us. I am so sorry you lost your baby, may God strengthen you and hope that her differences may become your strengths. I love your witness of her life. Thank you for sharing!

  2. I loved all the beautiful entries and photographs of your beloved daughter. I am so sorry you for your loss. It resonates with me how our children are mirror images of ourselves. I pray that God continues to strengthen you. Thank you so much for sharing!

    -Mary Elizabeth


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