Frustrating Fish

So a few weeks ago my co-worker friend T told me about a program called Pets in the Classroom, where you can apply for a grant to get a pet for the classroom.

Super cool right?

Well, the only catch, was that my boss wouldn’t let me get anything other than fish (lame), but I really wanted to add more nature to my room, so I went ahead. I’ve had fish and I’ve never had any trouble with them, so I wasn’t too worried. I filled out the forms, got the confirmation, and got my coupons in the mail. I was super excited, and so were my kids.

So Robby and I went to the pet store and picked out the tank and all the supplies and set it up in the classroom. We let it sit for a week to get acclimated, like you’re supposed to, and went and got our fishies the next weekend. We picked out a snail and a green cory catfish to help clean the tank, and we also got fancy guppies, thinking they would be a simple but pretty fish and they could have babies for the kids to watch.

Boy were we wrong.

One male died before the weekend was over (we purposefully got them on a long weekend so that if any kicked it we could get them out before the kids saw them), then another died later that week after some really weird symptoms. She would swim upside-down, fall to the gravel, only use one fin. It was weird. Then the kids and I noticed that the other fish had cuts in their fins and were missing some of the color on their fins. The male used to have a big beautiful polka-dot tail and by the end of the week the center of it was completely plain.

Robby came in Saturday and looked at the fish (he showed fish tanks in 4H, cause apparently that’s a thing) and he said he thought they had fin rot, so off we went to the pet store again. The fish lady agreed, and said if we wanted to try and save them we could use a medicine tablet, so we got it, gave it to the fish, and went home. The next day (Sunday) they all looked way worse. Huge chunks of their tails and fins were missing, and a few of them were swimming wrong. The fin rot was too advanced, so we ended up doing a mercy flush, and went back to the pet store again.

This time we got 2 mollies and a platy. I had mollies when I was in high school and I loved them. They lived a long time, they had lots of babies, they were easy to care for. But the male dalmation molly died later that week. The other two seemed to be doing well, and the kids named the fish; Molly for the black female molly, and Swimmy for the platy.

Well, we noticed that Molly kept biting Swimmy. And every time, the kids would completely freak out. I mean, yelling, screaming, the whole nine yards. Crazy levels of freak out. And, of course, today Swimmy died.

So now I get to explain, again, that we lost a fish.

And I am worn out. I thought getting fish would be a fun thing for the class. That the kids would go “cool, fish” and move on to the next thing, and if one died, then I would eventually replace it. But they are FLIPPING OUT over EVERYTHING. And they want me to fix EVERYTHING with these fish. I get that some of these kids haven’t experienced loss, and that’s fine. But I can’t handle 15 kids screaming and yelling at me about the fish every 2 minutes. I can’t take the guilt that I couldn’t save the fish. Again. I can’t take the pressure that I have to be responsible for not only the fish, but for making sure all of the kids are okay.

And I feel like I’m failing.

Because I can’t keep these stupid fish alive. I can’t explain why they are dying. Or I can, but I can’t do anything about it. And I can’t keep the kids from being upset, or help them feel better. And I can’t handle the kids freaking out about the fish and do the rest of my job.

I’m getting grouchy and short tempered. I feel like I’m unravelling at the edges. I just want the fish to live, for things to be simple. For the kids not to freak out.

I just want peace.

I don’t want to feel like I’m failing.


Little ‘T’ Trauma

Lori and I have been talking about my need to protect myself for the last few weeks, and my view on why I feel the need to protect myself, and she thinks that I am suffering from something called “Little ‘T’ (t) Trauma”.

Big T trauma (Trauma) is a horrific event. A person who is gang raped, someone who survived the 9/11 attacks, being in war. Something that would be horrifying to anyone. Something that you would expect anyone to get counseling for.

Little T trauma (trauma) is an ongoing scarring event. Being bullied your entire childhood, an overly critical parent, living in a household with an alcoholic or addict. Something that causes your reactions to become ingrained overtime into the very nature of you, so much so that you don’t even realize that you’re different.

Lori thinks–and it makes sense now that I look at it–that the extreme bullying and ostracization I experienced from 2nd grade on developed into a case of Little T trauma and I have never really recovered from it. It’s why sharing things about myself makes me feel vulnerable and unsafe. Why I don’t like to talk about myself, especially my struggles. Why I always feel as though I have to keep everyone at arms length and even have a hard time opening up to my husband and my family. Why I can’t for the life of me ask for help even when I know someone is treating me in a damaging way. Why I have this overwhelming fear of telling people what I need. Why I am terrified of showing any kind of weakness or flaw, because a part of me is just waiting for someone to turn that against me.

And I always thought that the kids who turned on me just liked him better. I thought they looked at my story (the truth: he abused me) and his story (the lie: I made up the story that he abused me to get him into trouble because I was ‘mad at him’ for him ‘breaking up’ with me in 1st grade) and just decided to take his side.

I thought it was a normal kid argument. You see it all the time: Kid A and Kid B argue, A says one thing, B says the opposite. The class takes sides. A few days (or hours) later, it’s all over and everyone is friends again.

But they never got over it.

They never decided to be my friends again.

I kept thinking ‘maybe this is the day they’ll be my friends’. Maybe this time they’ll include me. Maybe this time they won’t tease me. Maybe this time I won’t be the brunt of the joke. Maybe this time when I trust them, they won’t torture me. Maybe this time, maybe this time.

But this time never came.


And I could never figure out why. I didn’t make sense. And I kept trying. For years. I know it sounds pathetic, but I just kept thinking that somehow, someday, I would discover the right thing to do, to say, something, anything to make it all go away. But it just never happened. They were always against me. It never got better, I just moved away.

And as I talked to Lori and told her that I could tie the bullying to the very day that I came to school and the kids had all turned against me because they believed him, she pointed out something I had never realized before. They only ever heard the lie.

After I told my parents what he had done to me, they held me out of school for a day. From what I know, they contacted the school and he was sent to a counseling session. I can clearly remember being terrified to go back to school. I didn’t want to face him. I didn’t want to face anyone. They were all going to judge me. I was convinced everyone would hate me. I know he had told me that everyone would hate me if I told, but my parents didn’t hate me, so I don’t know why I was so scared to go back to school, but man was I scared. I don’t remember if they kept me out a second day, or just part of a day, or what, but I remember them telling me that I didn’t have to tell anyone why I wasn’t there or what had happened. That it was nobody’s business but mine, and they didn’t need to know. That the teacher’s weren’t going to tell the students, and that he shouldn’t tell anyone either, so there was no reason to be scared to go back to school. So I went. But the moment I walked into the classroom, everything was different. I could feel the difference in the room, and I remember seeing the kids across the room whispering together and I immediately felt afraid. The girl–who until that day was my best friend–came up to me and said (in an extremely superior and condescending voice) “He told us what you did” and swear I could feel the world drop from under my feet. What I did?

What I did?! I had never been more confused in my life.

I asked her what she meant and that was when she told me. That he has told everyone that I made up the story that he had abused me just to get even with him because he had broken up with me the year before. I tried to tell her that I didn’t make up anything, but she didn’t believe me. She walked away and I remember standing there at my little yellow locker, just fighting down the panic and the sorrow.

I always figured that somehow the truth had gotten out and he had panicked and tried to counter it with the lie he told, and they chose him and the lie. But, as Lori pointed out, they probably never heard the truth. Other than that one little girl, I never talked to anyone. They never heard the truth. So, to them, his lie was fact. In the minds of all those kids, I was a vicious liar just trying to hurt their friend. I hate that anyone could think that I was capable of purposely hurting someone. Because the exact opposite is true. He hurt me. I was just trying to get help. It feels like he was punishing me for trying to get help.

And he didn’t even need to tell that lie. No one would have known why he was pulled out of school. There was no reason to do that other than to be malicious. He went to everyone before I was even back at school and told this giant lie just to purposefully hurt me. How can someone be that evil? I can accept that the abuse was a reaction to him being abused, but telling that lie was more damaging to me than anything else, and that was just done out of spite.

He cost me my childhood. I didn’t have a childhood, I barely survived it. And I can never get that back. And I just have to keep trying to heal, trying to recover from what he did to me. And it’s just so unfair because there is no justice. I never did anything wrong and I am left to pay the consequences. I am suffering. I have to work to heal, fight to heal, pay to heal. My life has been damaged, broken, and all I can do is live with it. More than anything, I just want justice and I feel like I will never get it.

Because I’m still living in this trauma. Still expecting everyone to be against me. Still feeling like it’s not safe to trust anyone, because the second I do, they’re going to turn on me. And legally there is no way to get justice. It’s past the statute of limitations. It doesn’t matter that he sexually abused me, it’s been too long. And in any case, there is no documentation because no case was ever opened (which makes me wonder if the school believed him). And I highly doubt there would be a way to get justice for the bullying that was caused because of his lie, even if I had reported it at the time. I hate knowing that he did these horrible things to me and got away with them.

I hate that the more I understand what happened to me the more broken I feel.


Losing Myself

I hate feeling like I’m losing myself.

I used to be able to process things and work through them, now I have to shove them aside so that I don’t burst into tears. Then I come home and burst into tears. I’m not able to remain in control like I used to. I don’t have the confidence or the surety that I once had, and I hate that I’ve lost that. I know that it’s temporary, but in a way, it’s worse to know that I had it and now it’s (temporarily) gone. I feel as though I’ve become helpless. I know I used to be worse, but I never had a ‘better’ to compare it to. I never knew what I was missing.

And now I do, so while I’m trying to hold it together and make myself work through the situation, I also feel as if the former, stronger, part of me is trying to hold on but is slipping and can’t figure out why. It’s like losing the ability to do something you could always do. I’m losing that part of me that made me feel free. And that scares me more than I can put words to. And I hate that after all the work I have put in, it’s already slipping away. That I’m already slipping away. I’m so heartbroken.

I know this can be fixed, and that in time it will be fixed, but it’s just so hard. And I’m so tired of it being hard. I knew there would be some regression, but I didn’t think it would be this drastic, that it would hurt this much.

Laying Out My Hierarchy

One of the fears that I have been trying to face is the fear of the places and faces from my past. Lori recommended that I set up a hierarchy to start facing those fears.

Basically, I need to ease myself into the things that I am afraid of, for several reasons. It will help to slowly reassure myself that I am safe. It will help disperse the high levels of fear that I still carry. It will help me be able to return to places that I have been avoiding. It will let me eventually get to the point where I am not afraid.

But I have to actually start facing those people and places, and that scares the crap out of me.

Although, I don’t have to face them literally. And that’s what this post is about. I’m trying to figure out how to face them mentally and emotionally, not necessarily physically. So I’m going to try and make a list of ways I can slowly immerse myself, and then determine how I am going to do them.

  • look at old year books
  • drive past buildings- Elementary, Jr. High, High School
  • drive through Butlerville
  • park in the school parking lots and walk around
  • play on Butlerville school playground
  • go inside Butlerville and walk the halls
  • go in the classrooms where I was bullied, where they turned on me, and where he molested me

I am happy with the order, but I think with each thing I’m going to have to to each step in phases. Maybe start each step by doing them with Robby, and then slowly be able to do them on my own. And with the year books I could start with better years and then work my way to the tougher years.

I think I have a plan. Now I just have to do it.


How Much Do I Share?

For so long I never shared anything with anybody, and to be honest I didn’t want to. But now I’m starting to want to share. To bond. When I first started wanting to share with my friends, I was terrified. I had no idea how to share. That was actually part of why I started this blog. I wanted to share myself but from a distance. Sharing myself through a blog with people I didn’t know just felt safer. It was a medium I could control.

Since starting EMDR I have been wanting more and more to share myself with the people in my life, but I haven’t known how. I’ve bonded with a few new people and told them the truth about my past. I’ve even shared pieces of my past at GIRL Time, but I’ve remained guarded. I’ve had the constant fear that sharing myself will cause someone to reject me, judge me or even use it as a reason to be against me. I’ve been afraid of meeting the same reactions I got when I was a child and not having the strength to withstand it, just like I couldn’t back then.

You see, I’m still developing my sense of self. When those kids rejected me, I couldn’t see that their reaction wasn’t because of who I was, and so I absorbed it. I took all the hate, judgement, and blame and turned it inside myself. I truly believed that I caused their reactions. That their reactions were an indicator of who I was, and they were simply reacting to that. Since they treated me like a dirty unworthy person, I believed that that was who I was. And I carried that with me. For years, I truly believed that I was an unworthy person. Unworthy of love. Unworthy of praise. Unworthy of any positive reaction from anybody. I still struggle with the idea that I deserve praise for my achievements, even when I know–on some level–that I truly have done a good job.

But through the EMDR I have started to get to know myself. I have started to strip away the words those children thrust onto me and I’m starting to see the person that has been trapped all these years. But I’m still growing in myself. Instead of being a young woman, confident in who she is, I am still learning who I am. I am still protecting myself, learning to be proud of who I am, be sure of who I am. Because I want to share. I want to open up. I know that not everyone I open up to is going to love me, or even like me, and that is okay. I don’t need that. I don’t need their approval. All I need is to have the confidence to stand firm in who I am, and if a day comes when someone reacts poorly to what I share, I won’t backslide and lose myself. Instead, I will have the strength, the knowledge, and the self-confidence to know that their reaction belongs to them alone.

It does not define me.

Time to Be Me

Well, now my cousin is pregnant.

It doesn’t hurt as much as it did when I found out Beth was pregnant. But when Beth announced her pregnancy (quite rudely might I add), we were in the middle of TTC. Now we aren’t. In fact, we’ve actually decided that children aren’t a part of our immediate future.

That’s actually a pretty new revelation. When everything went wrong in August, one of the first things that Rob and I decided was that we would rather have a strong marriage with no kids than have children and neglect our marriage. We realized that TTC was putting too much strain on our relationship, and after a lot of talking we decided that having a biological child wasn’t that important. So we landed on adoption.

That was around September, right before I started EMDR. As we have worked through EMDR and everything that comes with it, we have made several realizations, and one of them is this: we  haven’t had any time to be us unencumbered by the PTSD. It’s always been there, we’ve always had to work around it. But soon it won’t be there anymore. And we want time to enjoy each other–just the two of us–before we add another person to our family.

Also, I haven’t had a chance to be free since I was 6. I’ve always had to put on a face–mask the pain, mask the fear, mask the fact that I’m drowning. I’ve always felt as though I have to have everything together. There is a line from a movie that says “You can’t lose it. Other people lose it. We’re supposed to find it” I’ve felt that my whole life. I’ve never felt as though I had the option to lose it. I always had to hold it together, hide how I was feeling. And I think (perhaps wrongly) that when you are a parent, you can’t ‘lose it’ anymore. You are responsible for another life. You can’t spend days watching TV and sewing while desperately trying to hold onto your sanity.

I want to know what life is like when you aren’t afraid to lose it. When you aren’t afraid to show your feelings. Hell, to feel your feelings. I want to get to know who I am. I want to have time when I can be free to just be me. The true me, not a me that I create for anyone else.

So we have recently decided that while we may want children in the future, we don’t want them right now. If/when we decide to have children, we will adopt, but our first priority is always our relationship.

I think that’s why it doesn’t hurt as much with Katy. It stung. I would give anything to have Jamie back (Rob would too, we talked about it) but we can’t. I will always miss Jamie, but this is the life we have. This is the life we have chosen, and I am happy with it.

I’m Remembering More

I remember sitting at that low wooden desk with my book, I think it was Henry and Mudge, waiting for my turn to read aloud. I was wearing long sleeves. I think they were light pink. He was pulling at the sleeves, trying to get his hand in them. I was confused, I thought we were going to read. I didn’t think that that was going to happen every time we sat here. I wanted to learn. He kept trying but could get his hand in the sleeve, the wrist was too tight. I could see him getting mad. I remember trying to spread the sleeve out with the fingers of my right hand while still holding my book flat with my left arm. I was worried that we would get caught, worried that I would get called on and not know where we were, worried that I would get in trouble. He could only get his arm part way up my sleeve. He was getting mad. I was scared and confused–I couldn’t understand why we weren’t just reading. I remember thinking that since he couldn’t get his arm up my sleeve he would just let it go, but he didn’t. I don’t know if he went under my shirt or down my pants, but I do remember thinking that instead of getting a break, it was way worse. After that, I stopped wearing long sleeves. At least that way I got to choose how he abused me.

It’s Over, I Am Safe Now

Today was EMDR, and this was the first time we did the bilateral stimulation with the trauma memories. Lori had me bring up the image and feelings that I associate with the abuse–A low wooden desk, plastic and metal chairs around it. I’m looking down at my lap. I can see my bright pink sweatpants with the white cord and the desk is covering part of my knees. I was wearing sweatpants because I had learned that he couldn’t get his hand under the elastic, so he would stay out of my pants. I can feel his hand on my right arm, going up the sleeve of my t-shirt. The phrases we had paired with that memory was “I am helpless and alone” and the phrase I want to change it to is “It’s over, I am safe now”.

Lori asked me to rate on a scale from 1 to 7 how true the phrase “It’s over, I am safe now” felt. I said a 2. I knew logically that it was over, but in my heart it didn’t feel that way. Then she asked me to bring up the image and tell her on a scale of 1 to 10 how disturbing it was. Tears burned my eyes and my voice shook as I said “Ten”.

Lori started the bilateral stimulation by having me follow her pen with my eyes while she moved it horizontally at varying speeds, all while I kept the image in my head along with the phrase “It’s over and I am safe now”. Every time she stopped she asked me to tell her what impression I was getting. It could be anything, from a color, to a physical sensation, to an image. I just had to be honest. I don’t remember all of my responses, but I know some of them were ‘blurry’, clouds, and clouds with a little red kite.  With each new impression, she had me focus on that impression, so it was kind of like a chain leading away from the original image. After a while she asked me to again rate how true the phrase “It’s over, I am safe now” felt. This time it was at a 4. She asked me to bring up the original image of the trauma and the phrase “It’s over, I am safe now” and I couldn’t find the image in my mind.


This is something that has haunted me for 19 years, and in the span of a half an hour, I went from crying when I thought of it, to not being able to find the image. I was completely thrown. I told Lori what I was experiencing, explaining that it was like when you are searching for a specific word and it’s on the tip of your tongue but you just can’t reach it. She told me to close my eyes and take my time and bring up what I could of the image and when I had that paired with the phrase “It’s over, I am safe now” to open my eyes and follow her pen, concentrating on those two thoughts. I did manage to find the image, but it seemed almost faded, like it was a memory, not reality. It didn’t have all the details I could see just minutes ago. I knew that there were scratches on the wooden tabletop, but I couldn’t see them. I knew my pink sweatpants had a white drawstring, but I couldn’t see it. I knew his hand was on my arm, but I couldn’t feel it. When her pen stopped, she had me take a deep breath in and out, and asked me to rate how true it felt. This time it was a 6. I told her how it felt true, but there was still this little part of me that was holding back, that wasn’t breaking through.

We repeated the exercise, and when I let out my deep breath my eyes filled with tears and I felt a huge smile on my face. It was a 7. I started laughing and crying. I am safe. I couldn’t believe I’ve never felt this way before. I AM SAFE! IT’S OVER AND I AM SAFE!!!!!! I was practically giddy. I wanted to run through the street laughing, I felt so amazing. Part of me never truly believed I would feel this way. When our session was done, Lori and I were talking and she said how she could see the joy on my face. That’s what I feel. Joy. I have a part of myself back that I never thought possible. I still don’t think it has completely sunk in. I want to run up to everyone I know and tell them how awesome of a day this is, how much I have gained. I AM SAFE!!!!!! It’s just so amazing.

When I stopped laughing and crying, Lori had me visualize the ‘safe place’ I had created in one of our earlier sessions (a forest with the sun shining through the trees) and to describe any changes I could see or feel. It looked the same, but it wasn’t. It was still a pleasant place, but it didn’t do anything special for me. It wasn’t a sanctuary, a retreat. I felt like I had outgrown it. Lori asked if a new safe place came to mind, and instantly the thought of being with Rob came to mind. I have never thought of a safe place with another person. It’s always been just me. But the thought of us together, just laughing and talking and being together made me feel amazing. I could feel myself smiling. Lori asked how that image made me feel. Loved, safe–truly safe–warm, happy, complete, whole. She asked me to assign a word to that image and feelings, and I chose Love. My safe place is now the love I share with my husband. It’s not me hiding out on my own, it’s being close and sharing my heart with the man I love. This is only the beginning of my EMDR journey, and I already feel I have been blessed beyond measure. As I am writing this I am smiling with pure joy and my eyes are filled with tears because I never thought I could feel this way. I can’t thank God enough for what He has done for me, nor can I thank all the people who have and continue to support me. I love you all.



Taking Off the Life Jacket

I have had so many people say to me that I am brave, that I am strong, that they are amazed by what I have been through. And what they say is nice, and I appreciate it, but I don’t believe it.

I’m not strong. I have gone through things because I had to. I didn’t have a choice. If I could choose I would gladly choose to be a selfish person with no life experience rather than go through what I have. I face things that I have to face Yes, I am very good at dealing with whatever life throws at me. I don’t like it, but sadly I have had enough experience that to onlookers it comes off as ‘brave’ or ‘strong’.

But I’ve never really been brave. Or strong.

When I tried to get help for my abuse and it backfired (horrifically), I took one look at what had happened and gave up completely. I hid inside myself for thirteen years. I mentioned to Sheila that I felt like I had been avoiding my issues and now with the EMDR I was having to truly face them, and I didn’t feel strong enough. She gave me this look, as if she was surprised that I didn’t see the truth, and said “But you haven’t been avoiding it for the past four and a half years, you’ve just had a life jacket on. Now you’re in the deep without a life jacket.”

So I think this is the first time I have been brave, and strong. This is the first time I have said that I don’t want ‘good enough’, I don’t want the bare minimum I need to get by. I want everything. I want my life back. I’m scared, and I know it’s going to hurt, and I hate that I’m having to go through this, but dammit, I’m going to do it.

This time, I am brave.

Broken Now Instead of Destroyed Later

Right after losing Jamie, I talked to (and yelled at) God a lot about why He took our baby from us. I knew he had a reason, but for the life of me I didn’t understand, and I didn’t agree. Every one I spoke to about this said the same thing, that ‘someday’ we would understand. But I felt so betrayed by God. How could He do this to us? What possible reason could He have for taking away our child? Were we being punished? Had we done something to deserve this pain? For months on end we talked and prayed, questioned and cried. Every time a person said ‘someday’ it felt as though a bitter knife was driven a little deeper into my heart. I blamed myself for being a bad mother, I blamed God for being unfair. I hated myself and I especially hated every pregnant woman I saw. And I still miss Jamie. I would still give anything to hold Jamie in my arms, to kiss that little face. I still wish that things had turned out differently. But I think we’ve reached ‘someday’.

When Rob and I went through our rough patch in August, we had a lot of heart to hearts, and one of the things we talked about most was Jamie. We both agreed that we never really processed losing Jamie, or accepted that loss. We both just tried to push past it, to tell ourselves that if “this” happens, then the pain will stop. We talked about how much we missed our baby, and how losing Jamie broke our hearts. We talked about how not mourning together ripped us apart and in many ways broke us. And, hardest of all, we talked–honestly–about what could have happened if we hadn’t lost Jamie.

It’s easy to tell myself that life would have been perfect, but the truth is that’s probably not real. I had a really hard time being pregnant. I felt like I wasn’t in control of my own body. All of a sudden there were so many things I couldn’t do, food I couldn’t eat. I was feeling things I had never experienced and couldn’t stop and couldn’t take medicine for. Feeling out of control is a huge trigger for my PTSD, and so many things about being pregnant were making me feel out of control. When I started bleeding at 9 weeks, I was put on partial bed rest and told not to lift anything. Rob, being the sweet and loving man that he is, did everything he could to take care of me, even carrying my purse, but to me it felt like all of a sudden I had lost my power. Now instead of having a few restrictions, I wasn’t allowed to do anything. I was frustrated and even resentful that I was having to go through this, all I wanted was to be pregnant, but be able to live my life normally. When we had our honesty talk, we realized that those feelings wouldn’t have just gone away. In fact, there is a very real possibility that they would have gotten worse. That could have, in turn, caused issues with the pregnancy and delivery. It would have

The scariest thing we talked about was postpartum depression. I was told by my therapist that I was at very high risk for postpartum depression due not only to my PTSD, but also to the fact that I have depression. What if I had abandoned Rob and the baby? What if I had started cutting, or even killed myself? What if I had hurt the baby?

What if I had killed our baby.

I know I could never have forgiven myself. That would have destroyed me. In all honesty, I probably would have killed myself once I realized what I had done. That would have destroyed not only me, but Rob, and our relationship. Rob recently told me that even when I was pregnant, the thought of me with postpartum being home alone with the baby terrified him. Even then, something inside him was afraid.

I will never be glad that we lost Jamie. I will never stop missing or stop loving Jamie. Jamie is our miracle baby, and I am so thankful for the time we got to spend together.

We believe that God took Jamie home so soon because He wanted Jamie to be a light in our life. A reminder of our love and happiness. He took Jamie so that we were broken now instead of destroyed later.