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Journal Letters to Brandon

My Sweet Brandon - I added this page to write personal letters to you and to write about all the special (and sometimes funny) things I think about and remember about you each day.  Oh, how I wish I could sit with you and discuss my day and hear all about yours. How I wish I could just pick up the phone and call you when I need to hear your voice.  I Miss You and Love You so much and pray that my words, my thoughts, my prayers and especially my love reach you each day.


Thursday 01/24/2008 

Dearest Brandon - I am so sorry it has been so long since I have written you a journal letter. I want to baby, but it's so hard when I think of why I am writing to you here - I promise to write you soon honey but right now I have to think of you as just not being home right now. I think of you every second of every day and always will - you are forever on my mind and always in my heart.  I'll be back as soon as I can to write to you - just know how much I love and miss you and keep sending me those wonderful signs. I Love you Brandon, bigger than the world and with all my heart.  Forever your Loving Mom.


Thursday 11/08/2007

My sweet Brandon - I am so very sorry that I haven't written to you in the past week. Please don't think it's because I haven't thought of you - I think of you every second of every day- this past week has been bad so I had to think of you as just not home. It's kind of hard to explain honey, I wrote to the wonderful people in my support group about you and what happened but it's almost like I am two separate people when I do that.  It's like I can be me and say 'you'll be home soon' then I'm this other person who talks about her son being in Heaven. Does that make any sense to you baby?  I miss you terribly Brandon and lot's of days I have to think of you just being away, like when you lived in NJ and I lived in VA. It's sad now that the weather is cold and it gets dark so early - I always loved the fall and the smell of the leaves and the smell of wood burning in fireplaces - this year it brings a new sadness, an unfamiliar sadness. I remember visiting you in NJ and sitting by your fireplace playing games and talking well into the night. I remember when you would visit me and split wood for me for my fireplace. You and I always loved splitting wood - while others hated it. We find it exhilerating, maybe because we both love fireplaces so much.  I need you to do me a favor and watch over Mema for me, although I'm sure you already are. She is really upset about the news about her lung cancer. She goes to the Dr on Monday and we'll know more then. I sent an email to my grieving parents group to say a prayer for Brandon's Mema and I got a lot of heartfel replies - tell your Heavenly Buddies that their Mom's and Dad's are wonderful people and they should be very proud. That is something we as parents want Brandon, I still want you to be proud of me. It's so very important that I do the right thing for you - for you and your Memory. I miss the butterflies Brandon. Each time I saw a butterfly I would think it's you sending me a sign to let me know that you are alive and that you are free - I still believe that honey, but I miss the butterflies.  Everywhere I look now is all about the Holiday's and Christmas and it makes me so very sad to think of us apart at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Every year you would say are you coming to NJ or am I coming to VA? If for some reason I couldn't make it to NJ you always made it home to me. I wish last year that we had celebrated bigger at Thanksgiving and Christmas. I feel so badly that we didn;t even have a tree last year - your last Christmas and I didn't even have a tree for you. I hated that finances were so bad that I couldn't make it big - you, always being the unbelievable son you are, always said it's us that matters and being together, not the tree or the presents. I feel so bad that you were so sick and in such pain that you didn't want to celebrate Christmas. Oh Baby, how I wish I could turn back the clock and do it better for you - you deserved so much more than I could give you. The one thing I do know that was and is never lacking is my love for you - I could not or cannot love you anymore. You are and will forever be the most important person in my life and I love you completely with all my heart and soul - and I do know that you loved me back the same way. You always let me know how important I was to you and how much you loved me and I will forever cherish that.  So many people have told me that they could actually feel our closeness, that we had this unbelievably strong bond and friendship, beyond and so much stronger than the traditional mother/son bond and you know what I say "Yes, we do". That will never change for us Brandon.  Please Sweetie know how very much I love you and miss you - Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Friday 11/02/2007

Hi Baby - Today I am not going to write you a letter like I have these past few weeks. Last night I awoke in a panic so many times I lost count and so today has been a 'he's just not home right now' day. So for today sweetie you are just out and about doing things like every other 25 year old - Be safe Honey - I love you.


Thursday 11/01/2007

Dearest Brandon - I can't believe another month has passed. It has been 7 months since God called you home to him in Heaven.  It has been 215 days since I last heard your sweet voice, felt your strong hugs and looked into those beautiful blue eyes.  The world around me seems to keep going, but my world stopped when you went away. There are some days when it feels like just yesterday that you and I were standing in the kitchen talking, yet other times it seems an eternity. My head is all confused baby - the only thing I am certain of is how very much I Love you and how desperately I miss you. I would have given my life for you Brandon if given the chance - I would have gladly died to let you keep living - I am left here in this big, cold and empty world and I am dead inside. My heart breaks a bit more for you each day, yes, it still beats and what is left of its shattered pieces is filled with love for you. The anger, guilt and the emptiness I feel reside in the hollows of my heart and I try so hard to keep them from invading what is left. I want that to hold nothing but the profound love I feel for you.  Living each day is a battle - I want so badly to end this existance here, for that's all it is now, it is not a life, yet a part of me feels I need to go on living to be your voice, to right the wrongs against you and to keep your memory alive.  I hurt so much every day baby - I am so confused.  Please Sweetie know how very much I love you and miss you - Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Wednesday 10/31/2007

Happy Halloween in Heaven Sweetie.  You should see the Halloween website that your heavenly buddy Lucas 'Luke' Ross's Mom and siter Emily did for all of you. You were dressed as a ghost this year honey, as were many of the young adult boys, the girls were witches and the smaller children had cute bear costumes. I hope that you all danced from cloud to cloud in celebration. It is so hard to think of you that way, but at the same time I have to think of you as laughing and having fun with all of your new friends in Heaven. I believe that you are probably one of the older ones that has taken it upon yourself to take care of and look after the younger ones - you were always so good with the little ones - Gabby, Bree and Meg. 

I know you were beyond the age of trick or treating but today was still a hard day, for it brought memories of halloweens past and seeing the excitement on your face as you put on your costume and prepared to go out and get your candy treats.  You didn't eat most fo the candy, you just simply emjoyed the thrill and excitement of the day.  I also remember the past 2 halloween's when you looked forward to handing out candy to all the kids - you had gotten to the point where you could appreciate the little ones all dresed up and excited to be out.  I thought about you all day today baby and my heart ached with missing you. I know that the next few months with the upcoming holiday's are going to be unbearable and right now I honestly don't know how I am going to get through them without you. You were the one that always said that lot's of food on Thanksgiving or gifts at Christmas never mattered, that it was who you spent it with that mattered - and you being the loving and most incredible son always followed those sentences by saying you wouldn't want to spend those days with anyone else but me. That's how I always felt felt Brandon and continue to feel that way - there is no one in this world that I want to spend the holidays with more than you !!

Right now the only thing I amloking forward to is the 14thof December and the chance to hear from you at the John Edward's reading in NY. I hope and I pray everyday baby that somehow, someway you will find your way to come through - Regardless baby, I love you and miss you with all my heart and soul, today and every day. Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Tuesday 10/30/2007

Hi Sweetie - Your heavenly buddy Luke Ross's mom did a wonderful Halloween website and included you and all of your Heavenly Buddies - I cried when I saw your name under the little ghost.  I'm sure he's mentioned that his birthday is on Halloween and I'm sure you will all be celebrating with him to make his day special. How I remember all the Halloween's with you. You loved trick or treating, even though you didn't eat most of the candy. I think you were the only kid in the neighborhood that still had candy left in January.  Some of the costumes I remember you wearing was an Army Soldier, a Hobo, a Clown and Dracula. So many beautiful memories baby and I want to remember and cherish them all. Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Monday 10/29/2007

Hi Baby - I'm sitting here tonight looking at all your photos, as I do every day and every night, and my heart both swells and breaks.  I look at how truly handsome you are, how your eyes seem to talk to me through the depths of our souls and I think of the man you grew to be and my heart swells with pride. You are a truly loving soul Brandon and you always tried to live your life with others feelings in mind.  That's not to say your actions didn't cause pain to someone, but if it did it was never intentional and that makes a huge difference. We all have actions in our life that at one point or another may have caused unintentional pain to others, but it's what we take away from that and what we learn and how we try to right the wrong that makes us better people. It's the things we do and the way we truly feel inside about having caused that pain that makes us good or bad - and you my love, are a good soul.  You hated to hurt anyone and if you did you yourself suffered inside because of it. I have always hated to see you pained. You were always so hard on yourself, much harder than you should have been. But it's what made you who you are, the loving, caring young man that made this world, my world, a better place.  I know that so many people are better for having known you, I know that I am truly a better person for having the privilege and the honor to be blessed to be your Mom, loving you and getting so much love and respect in return. Brandon, you continue to touch so many lives. I will forever miss you terribly and love you more than words can say. Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Sunday 10/28/2007

Hi Baby, Sunday's seem to be very hard days for me to write to you. I promise to write to you tomorrow. I Love you and Miss you honey, so very much. Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Saturday 10/27/2007

Dear Brandon - Today I woke to a very rainy day. Almost humid but very cloudy and foggy and very wet. I got some news today that is exciting but at the same time saddens me.  Roger and his girlfriend had their baby the other day, a little boy they named Mason Dean. He is very small, just a little over 2 lbs but seems to be doing well.  Please watch over him for Uncle Albert and Sue. Yes, Uncle Albert and Sue are Grandparents, as are Aunt Terry and Uncle Leo with the birth of Jason's baby Desiree in July.  I am truly happy for them all, the blessing and the miracle fo birth is a joy like no other - I know that first hand. There is no greater joy than the joy of being a parent. The sadness comes from knowing you will never get to experience the joy of fatherhood like Jason and Roger (and you would have been an incredible father) nor will I experience the joy of being a grandparent.  Please watch over both of these new additions to our family Brandon and shine your love down upon them.  I love you and miss you so very much honey - please feel the love I send to you each day and please feel the hugs I send to you in my dreams each night. Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!*********************************************************

Friday 10/26/2007

Dear Brandon - This world without you is so very hard. It's like living in a Maze, a maze with walls so high I can't see anything. I know you're at the end of the maze and I run frantically to get through it to get to you, but at each turn I hit a wall. Sometimes I can hear you calling me and I panic, I need to get to you, I know you need me. I'm using all the strength I have, but I can't get to you. I fall to my kness, exhausted, as hard and as desperately as I want to reach you I cannot. I want to keep running, but my legs won't work anymore. I scream in despair, I can't breathe. I pray for strength to go on but it doesn't come. I still can't reach you, my precious son. I sit and I try to rationalize the course but my brain won't work either. I know you are there, just on the other side and no matter how hard I try, I cannot reach you. I sit, I am broken hearted. I beg you to forgive me. I'm trying Brandon, with all my heart and soul, my arms outstretched, trying to reach you, trying to pull you back to me. I'm trying Brandon, I can't, please forgive me. Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Thursday - 10/25/2007

Dear Brandon - I sent an application today to adopt a NJ highway in your name. I remember how much fun we had doing it when we lived in Va and how proud we felt when we finished filling all the bags with trash. The road looked so much prettier because of what we did. I want to do that again, for you honey, so that when you look down from Heaven above you will see just beautiful things.

I took Nikki for a walk at Swartswood Lake today.  It brought back so many memories of us going there every day in the summer until we moved to Va. How you loved to take your little toy dump trucks and play in the sand for hours. You learned to swim in that lake and would stay in the water until your lips were blue and i made you come out. I remember sitting on the beach together eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches covered in sand. i remember as you got older how we would race one another across the lake, you always one being the little fish that you were. Walking today I just kept thinking how much you would have loved to be walking there today too, the sun was shining, the leaves all bright with color and no one else around - you liked your solitude sometimes. I keep thinking that there has to be something I can do to make all of this right again, something that can be done to bring you back home again.  I couldn't come up with anything today baby, but don't worry, I'm going to keep trying. Until then my Love - Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Wednesday - 10/24/2007

Dear Brandon - Hi Baby, I woke today to a chilly and rainy day. I hate to see the cold weather come, not only because you know how much I hate the cold but because it means the butterflies will be gone until spring and that makes me sad. I sit and wonder what will you send my way, if not butterflies, to show me that you are ok.  I look everyday, perhaps a bit too hard, for signs from you.  I need them honey, so very much, so please keep sending them, ok? 

Most of the stores already have their holiday decorations and displays up - How Brandon, am I going to make it through Christmas without you here? We always talked about how the presents didn't matter to us, it was spending it together that made it so special. I wish I would have made last Christmas big and spectacular for you - I wish I made all your Christmas's that way, but especially last Christmas. I feel so bad that we didn't even have a tree last year, I know you said you weren't feeling well and didn't want one, but I should have insisted on doing more than  just the lights and the stockings. I have so many regrets Brandon. So much guilt that I will forever carry in my heart. I know it hurts you to see me so sad all the time, and I hate thinking that I'm causing you heartache, it's just so hard honey. I miss you so much my heart hurts every day. It actually feels like someone is crushing my chest. How I wish I could trade places with you baby and give you the chance to live a full life. I wish i could go back and change things, please know that I would if I could. I hope that you know that while I wasn't always able to give you everything I would have liked to that I tried. I hope you always knew, and continue to know, that you mean more to me than anything in this world and I pray that you know how very much I Love you.

 Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Tuesday - 10/23/2007

Dear Brandon - I was out shopping today (and cutting off all my hair) and decided to stop at Dominick's for a slice of pizza.  I had been in there a few times since moving here but hadn't yet seen Pete. Today I got to see him when he came in to work. He immediately came over and sat by me where he stayed for an hour or so. He didn't care that it was busy, he even shut off his phone so he wouldn't be disturbed. We talked about you the entire time and all the things he remembered about you when you were growing up. He mentioned that you had a charisma about you that made everyone who met you instantly love you - of course I agreed. He remembered how he could never walk past you and not at least ruffle your hair - he said he just always felt this draw to you.  He let me talk and cry and talk some more and I was so grateful to him for that.  He also said something else that was very special to me - He said that people could live to be 200 years old and never come close to knowing or having the closeness and special bond that you and I shared - he said our love and friendship was so evident to everyone who knew us.  I know that you and I felt it and knew that we always had one another and that we shared a mother/son bond like no other but it means so much to me to know that others saw it and were touched by it too. He hugged me again when I left and said he loved me and that he loved you too - oh how it touched my heart to hear someone talk about how your life touched their's. You are an amazing soul my sweet and precious son and you continue to shine and impact the lives of so many people. I love you so very, very much. Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Monday - 10/22/2007

Dear Brandon - I am sorry that I did not write to you yesterday. I was not feeling well and just could not sit and write. Perhaps it was because it was a Sunday (the day you went to Heaven) or the 21st of the month (the day of your birth). I do know that I thought I would go insane last night. I needed to talk to you so badly, to be with you or call you on the phone and hear your voice like I had a million times before. When I realized that i could not, I could not catch my breath or breathe. I had to get up from the chair and I paced the floors begging my mind to think of something else.  I miss you so much.  Please try to send me a sign that you are ok.  I worry every day that you are feeling alone and that you are scared and I am not there to comfort you. I need to know that you are safe and at peace and living a life, although so very, very different than the one I wished for you, that is filled with the love and happiness that you deserve.  That is all I ever wanted, and still want for you Brandon, for you to be safe and happy and to feel loved.  Please know Honey that I miss you terribly each day that you are not here with me and know that I love you to Heaven and back a million times more than you can imagine. 


I still believe in miracles and I keep telling myself everyday that somehow, someway, someday a miracle will bring you, my precious Brandon, back to me. That you will walk through the door like you've never been gone, and after hugging you tightly I will look at you and say "please don't ever scare me like that again, please don't ever go away and leave me like that again".


I still believe in miracles and pray for one every day.

Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!

Saturday - 10/20/2007

Dear Brandon - Today I woke to a beautiful fall day. The kind of day that you love. Unfortunately I also woke with a stiff and very painful back. I'm not sure if I slept on it wrong or what. I did some yard work the other day but haven't really lifted anything heavy. Needless to say, work this evening waitressing will be a challenge.

I don't recall if I mentioned it before but I have joined this wonderful support group for grieving parents. Many of the parents are some of the people who leave such beautiful messages for you on your websites. They provide me so much comfort and support and let me talk about you all the time - and you know how I love to talk about you and show you off.  I remember all the times you would stop by my office and get all embarassed because I insisted on walking you around and showing you off to all my co-workers - Sorry again for that Brandon, but that's what proud Mom's do. Anyway, one of the things I like about the online group is that each day a question is sent to all the parents and we write our replies for all to read. It's my chance to talk about all the wonderful things people who never met you don't know. Today's question was about endearing qualities and I got to brag about you and your endearing qualities. I told about how respect was very important to you not only for you but you always made sure everyone treated me with respect too.  I also mentioned the card you got me for Christmas when you were about 15, the inspirational one that spoke of coping with dificulties because I was upset that I couldn't afford a big Christmas for you that year.  You wrote the most heartwarming words to me about Christmas being more about love and who you spend it with. You said you wouldn't want to be anywhere else or with anyone else.  What meant so much to me was that I know you weren't just saying it - you showed me that type of love all throughout your life.  I know that every parent thinks this but I am truly blessed to have the honor of being your Mom. The love and the closeness we share is something special beyond words and it is something that I treasure each and every day.

Ok, Brandon - this one will throw you for a loop. You know how I feel about tattoos (although i did eventually come to love yours) and how I always say 'you can't pay me enough to get one'. Well, I have been teetering on that one lately. I would love to get one of you - just like the black and white photo from last fall that I love so much - but with your beautiful blue eyes - no other color just those striking blue eyes of yours that seem to reach out and grab people by the soul.  So baby, what do you think? I know that Shawnee, as talented an artist as he is, could do it for me, but I don't know where to put it. Well, somrthing for us both to think about huh?

Well baby boy, I hate to run but have to get ready for work. I will write more again later.

I love you bigger than the world and with all my heart (do you remember how we used to say that to each other every morning when I dropped you off at Sister Mary's for pre-school).  Well sweetie, that never changed and never will.

I Love you and Miss you Honey- so very much - Mom

P.S. if there is anyway you can get your adorable cats to stop fighting I would be so grateful - I know they miss you and while they rarely fought when you were home they fight so much since you've been away.

Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!


Friday - 10/19/2007

Dear Brandon - It's a cool and cloudy day today with a misty rain falling. Not too cold or rainy to close the windows which is good- as you know, I love to keep the windows open for the fresh air.  I know it won't be long now though and the windows will have to stay closed for the cold NJ winter.  I have had to close them a few times already and was sad that I could no longer hear all the windchimes  out back because my apt is on the 2nd floor.  As you know, I love windchimes and find the sound to be soothing. I even have a very small one (with butterflies) hanging from my rearview mirror and love the sound. Most of the time I find the radio too noisy and distracting.  Anyway, I went out back earlier and removed the windchimes. I then went out on the little rooftop off the living room (had to climb out the LR window)  and hung them from the tree limbs. Now I can still hear them even if the windows are closed. This apt reminds of the one you had when you lived in Branchville, with the sign shop downstairs. It is an older home and there is an office on the first floor but the guy is rarely there.  There are no neighbors close by and there are lot's of woods and a huge field outback. I cleared a large area to play ball with Nikki, as it was all overgrown with tall weeds when I moved here.  I would like to clear more and Pop-Pop is going to help me cut down some more brush and all the poison sumac trees.  Speaking of Pop-Pop, he helped to get your weedwacker and leaf blower working for me. He is still working on the chainsaws but since they are so old may not be able to get them going. I used them both the other day and thought of you the entire time. How your hand held that handle or how the leafblower rested heavily on your shoulders. Who would have thought that simple lawn equipment could mean so very much, but they do.

There are a lot of deer outback that Nikki tries to chase and just the other day I looked out and saw about 12 red head turkeys in the yard. I think they like to drinnk the water from Nikki's pool.  There are also a ton of turkey buzzards that sit in the trees and sometimes fly overhead pretty low - kind of scary. Oh but not as scary as the bear I have seen.  One day he was about 5 feet from me when I came around back from the front of the house - luckily he did not see and I was able to back-up while he continued on.  I get nervous at night out back when I take Nikki out.  I get home from work after dark and of course Nikki wants to play outside since she's been inside for so long. I usually bare the car horn when I pull up and Pop-Pop bought me a large airhorn.  So far so good as far as not seeing him at night, but I do get scared when Nikki starts barking and runs out into the dark. Pop-Pop gave me a pair of his binoculars to keep here to see all the critters up close.

Last night I was going through the Tv channels late and saw a bit of America's Funniest Videos. they had a spot on there where a frog was on a toy motorcycle. It made me think of when you would sit your hamster Snoopy in your radio controlled trucks and drive him all over the house. You loved doing that with him.

Well Sweety, Mom has to run for now and get some things done before work. I know that you are looking down from Heaven and already know about the things I am telling you, but I need to talk to you, to tell you about things just like always.  Oh how I wish I could just sit here and talk to you all day.  I will write more again later. I love you honey and miss you so very much - Mom

P.S. I found the dime you sent me yesterday - Thank you baby !!

Be safe in God's loving arms Honey and know that we are one day closer to being together again !!



Brandon -
Oh, how I miss you. I wish I could see you, feel your hugs. Like that last night when you hugged me - when you came up behind me and put your arms around me with your chin on my shoulder and your cheek next to mine. Telling me you loved me and were sorry for making me worry about you. I didn't know that would be the last hug you would ever give me - I didn't know that a few hours later when I helped you to bed and you shut your eyes that you'd never again open them. I didn't know.

I want so badly to hear your voice. I've kept your outgoing voicemail message on your phone and I call it often, but it's not the same, it's not you alive and well on the other end of the phone, or here safe at home. Even when you were living away from home we always spoke at least once a day, everyday - sometimes a few times a day when we wanted to share some news and sometimes for no real reason but to hear the other's voice. I am so grateful for that special bond - Mother and Son, but also Best Friends. We always said "I Love You" to one another before hanging up the phone. That was one of the many, many things I loved about you as you were growing up -it didn't matter where you were or even if your buddies were around to hear - you always said "I Love You" and never seemed to feel embarrassed like most boys would have. I loved that we were able to speak so openly and share so many things with one another, especially after you moved back home. I miss the comfort of you being here. Even when you would spend a lot of time upstairs in your room when you weren't feeling well, I knew you were just upstairs, a few feet away. I'd just have to call your name to ask you a question (usually about some problem I was having with my computer) or to tell you one of our favorite shows was on and you'd come right down. I miss cooking for you. I miss sitting in front of the TV with you eating dinner and talking. I miss finding all the little hairs all over the bathroom floor after you'd shave your head - I'd sometimes get frustrated, but what I wouldn't do now to have a bathroom full of those hairs. I miss you singing silly songs out your bedroom window when I was out back playing with Nikki. I miss you telling me to make sure you were awake in the morning so you didn't miss the ER re-runs you watched every day. And I miss hearing you talk about all the things you were going to do when you were finally free of the pain.

I feel so alone here without you. It doesn't feel like home anymore. A home is filled with loved ones, comfort and laughter. It's quiet and cold here now - no longer a home - it's just a house. Your memory is not in this house, your memory is carried within my heart and will go with me wherever I go. Each day, as the hole in my heart gets bigger from missing you, I will fill it with another memory of you. That hole will forever remain in my heart, but I will surround it with beautiful memories of you and the enormous joy and never-ending love that you brought to my life each and every day.

I Love You Brandon