No One, No Thing, No RIVER Can Separate You From Me!

Willy at Elbow Falls... on the Elbow River

Willy at Elbow Falls… on the Elbow River

Friday, June 28, 2013 (768 days)

Dear Will,

So much has happened since I last wrote to you, but that didn’t mean that you were not in my thoughts.  On the contrary actually, for through the tragedy of the flood that ravaged much of Bragg Creek and the rest of Southern Alberta, we miraculously dodged it.  For those days when we weren’t sure if the berm would hold and save our homes, it was you that consumed me, you that gave me hope, and most of all, you that sealed my belief that you really are looking out for us, and that it was you that kept our home and us safe.

When we were served with the mandatory evacuation order last Thursday evening, the first thing I packed was you (your ashes), your favourite plaid shirt, and my macbook that holds all of our treausured photos. I couldn’t imagine leaving you behind with all the uncertainty that lie ahead.  As I watched others in our community anxiously trying to move things up from their basements to higher ground and listened to their stories and watched their stress levels climb, it was clear to me that what I left behind was just “stuff” and that I didn’t have the emotional energy to put into things that were replaceable.  Losing you has given me a different perception on life events and what is truly important.  It is the people that I love, that I cherish beyond anything else that matter the most.  What was most important was that I had you and that Dad and I and Ben were on our way to the Schneider’s home in Elbow Valley where the threat of the river was nil. I knew Justin was safe at his home in Calgary and what I drove away from last Thursday evening was just stuff.

I have said it before – that what I know for sure is that nothing in my life going forward will ever be as difficult as losing you.  Of course, I felt a huge relief when we were given the go ahead to return to Redwood on Sunday and to see that things here were good.  We were lucky, Will; our home was dry and all of the reminders of you were still here; dry and intact.  Some of our friends and neighbors were not so lucky; wet basements and lots of work to remove wet carpets and drywall and “stuff”, negotiations with insurance companies and the inconvenience of cleaning and rebuilding and the stress that goes with that, but no loss of a loved one. We all have much to be grateful for in the aftermath of what happened in our part of the world last week.  Some lost their homes, their businesses, their financial security now in jeopardy, but all those that we know have each other and that is most important.   We are ever grateful, Will; to a God that heard our prayers, to ALL that worked tirelessly to repair and reinforce our berm when the river was relentless, to the miracle that kept our community safe and to YOU for keeping it all in perspective and keeping me sane.

I love you more and more each day, little one.  So very much and like a bus. That’ll never change and no one or no thing or no river can ever take that away.


4 thoughts on “No One, No Thing, No RIVER Can Separate You From Me!

  1. I am so glad Joni you were all safe and my dear your words are so very right its just stuff my prayers were going out to my own kids and friends and just thankful everyone was safe. Then just a week later there was a forest fire in Preston AZ and a loss of 19 young men. Now that’s something you can’t fix, I am sitting at the airport waiting for our flight and today was the memorial service for these brave young men if I wasn’t here I would have attended the service but my thoughts are with the family’s and community that are just heartbroken. Keep writing Joni you are an inspiration. All my love Lyn.


    • Lyn, you inspire meto keep going, to keep writing. You have always believed that I could write, that I should write. The whimsical, polka dotted frog (WillBilly)that you sent to me sitson Will’s bedside table, his arms wrapped around the boy things Will loved so much.

      Have aa wonderful trip, Lyn. Travel safe. Xo


  2. A beautiful love story and so true. We all feel so truly sorry for the flood victims and their losses but know that a lost child is also very devastating. Will was our grandson and he lives in all of us.Thanks for your letter Joni. Also love you like a bus. Mom


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