This morning I had the privilege of volunteering for the Super Sam Foundation’s Super Hero 5k and 1 Mile Fun Run. We had a beautiful morning and are so grateful to have so many supporters, near and far. The kids mile was as wonderful and inspiring as it was last year. Seeing those smiling faces take off running with their superhero capes flying high…there’s nothing like it!
But it is baffling to me how one’s heart can be so full, and yet still feel empty. After the race was over, the balloons taken down, the clean-up finished, the hard work before, during, and after the event that were so worthwhile done, the day was not complete.
I was given the humbling honor of visiting the cemetery with Matt, Cassie, and Cassie’s family. We took with us one of the superhero capes. Last year after the race, I had the extra capes in my car and decided to visit Sam and tie a cape on the tree next to his resting place. I did this quietly, unsure if it would be appreciated but hoping it would be seen as a gesture of respect. The cemetery staff was gracious and allowed the cape to stay. Through wind, rain, and snow, the cape stayed in that tree for the entire year. Yesterday, we took the cape down to replace it with a new cape. It was, as Cassie said, like a “Changing of the Cape” similar to the Changing of the Guard.
It’s hard to believe how much time has passed. How Ava has grown and had milestones that Sam will never get to have. I grieve for Sam. Definitely. But I also grieve for Matt, Cassie, and Ava. I wish I could take their pain away. My heart swells with pride at the work they are doing. Despite their devastating loss, they are keeping their heads up. They are marching forward and working toward a cure. They are fighting for All. The. Kids. No one would fault them if they chose to grieve privately and to carry on with their own lives. But they have seen a need and are dedicated to carrying on the work inspired by Sam. To help other families in the fight and to do all they can to allow children to have those milestones that Sam will not get.
None of us doubt that Sam is in heaven and knows nothing but peace and joy, but as long as we live here on Earth, we will have a hole in our hearts that cannot be filled. We will miss Sam every day. But we will continue living faithful and joyful lives. We will continue fighting for all the kids. We will be there for Matt, Cassie, and Ava, to love them, to honor Sam’s wish, and to journey together toward healing for all.
#WeBelongToEachOther #SuperSamFoundation #MoreThan4 #SSF4AllTheKids