Dear Robyn

To the one who introduced me to Ace of Base when she would take me to 2nd grade in her old skool Datsun wagon - which would be so freaking rad now. Who saved me from nearly being hit by a car when crossing Brown on our way home from 7-Eleven. Who gave me asthma from her second-hand smoke (Don't worry, I forgive you. It was before all the research came out about how toxic it is - and you tried to keep it contained in your room). And to the one who introduced me to the counter scraper that Pampered Chef is probably most famous for...

I can't believe you're gone. Like literally the shock hasn't worn off yet. I have so many really fond memories of you. Like how you showed me that Taco Bell had green sauce, and you could order it and they would give it to your for free. Piping hot in its own little container. I'm sure you're the reason why they now have salsa verde in their famous little packets.

You lived with my mom and I when you were pregnant with Kailei. She was your first girl after three boys. The first time I saw her, I fell in love with her. She had the sweetest little chubby face and so much black hair on top of her head. I kept her baby picture with me for a long time. She slept with you every night, and when I asked you if you were ever afraid you would roll over on top of her, you said "No because I just always know where she is." When I had my own babies and they slept so cozy next to me, I understood exactly what you meant.

Your life wasn't easy. It was full of choices and occurrences that led to really hard lessons. I've so enjoyed reconnecting on facebook over the last few years. You were cheerful and optimistic. It seemed you were in the middle of trying to make a happy ending for yourself. I'm sorry you had to go during this time in your life.

I still think of the pictures that went up our stair case. Some were my mom's, some were yours. Your kids, your siblings, you. They're all still framed and hanging in my memory. And you so young and beautiful will be etched in my heart and mind forever. Godspeed.


My extended family has experienced two losses in the last week. One week ago today marks the day I received a text saying that my cousin Tisha's husband had passed away. In my old* age I seem to cry less. I've become much more of an internalizer of emotion. But receiving that news was such a huge blow. Tears came instantly. My heart broke for my cousin. They have a son who is two months older than Cora. I couldn't imagine trying to explain to Cora why Jake wouldn't be around anymore. That coupled with the tragic way he passed completely overwhelmed me.

I'd been following the updates about services and the family that my cousin Robyn, Tisha's oldest sister had been providing, and praying for the family constantly. Kimmel's (Tisha's husband) funeral was yesterday. I called my mom yesterday evening to see how things went, and she told me that we had another tragedy. I instantly thought something was wrong with my Grammy because she hadn't been feeling well, and I knew my mom had taken her to the doctor on Monday. It wasn't Grammy.

She told me that Robyn passed away earlier in the day. It's so tragic - certainly enough to break a heart in two several times over. I'm so sorry for the family. And for my Aunt Brenda who is now part of that exclusive club that no mother ever wants membership in - outliving your children. 

God be with you till we meet again. When life's perils thick confound you, put His arms unfailing round you. God be with you till we meet again.


  1. Thanks Brie....needed that. I too feel like I internalize a lot more...especially since these are both tragic but due to personal choices made by each individual. I know my life wasn't perfect growing up and a lot of times my parents were "so mean" but looking back on their "meaness" I realize how lucky I really am and was because I think that is what has allowed me to be the person I am. This is so hard on those left behind because they are all trying to make sense and there just isn't any to be made. I can't imagine being in Aunt Brenda's shoes and my heart breaks for her. These things really put life in perspective.

  2. I'm sorry, Brie. Tough week. We'll be praying for you even more.



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