~~ LISA ELAINE MEWBOURNE ~~
September 23, 1965 ~ April 23, 1991
Written by her Mother,
Faye Mewbourne Martin
Lisa was my beloved Little Lamb, a very special gift from God whom I was allowed to walk with a while on this earth. She was my third child...My Baby. The base of her grave marker bears the inscription, "You'll always be my Baby, Love, Mom." I had called her "Baby" all her life. She would smile her sunny smile and say, "Mom, I'm not a baby anymore." My answer was always, "You will ALWAYS be my Baby." She would smile and I knew she loved being her Mother's Baby.
It has been over eleven years since I last saw my Baby. You never expect to have to go that many years without seeing, hugging, kissing, arguing with, etc., one of your beloved children. While my overall anguish is better, the part of me that just plain MISSES HER remains inconsolable. What does a parent do about that? If she had been living away from home in another country for eleven years, I would miss her, wouldn't I? Of course I would! It is a natural phenomenon. I would have been on a plane long ago flying towards my Baby....
I wonder ... Do airplanes fly to Heaven?
My beautiful twenty-five year old daughter, Lisa, completed suicide on April 23, 1991, two days after a break up with her husband of three years. For many years, she had struggled with debilitating illnesses, and now her marriage was ending. He moved out on Saturday, April 20, 1991, taking their little dog "Hans" with him. When I phoned her Sunday afternoon, she was crying. I got into the car and drove straight to her house. She came to the door disheveled and still in her pajamas. She was holding little Hans in her arms. Her husband had taken the dog, then brought him back because he wouldn't stop whining for Lisa. She crawled back into bed with the dog, and I crawled in behind her. She held her precious little dog and wept while I held her. I must have held her in my arms for over two hours. This would be my last time to hold my darling daughter.
I stayed the night with her and we talked long into the night. This time with her was a gift straight from Heaven. She talked and cried about many things that were painful to her. I listened and tried to encourage her as best I could. She left me many gifts, but the best was being able to spend the last day and a half of her life with her. She said two things that have kept me going...While talking about people in her life who should have loved her and didn't, she gave me the first gift. "Mom, I've always known that you loved me." The other gift was when she looked at me and said, "Mom, you may not believe this, but I want you to know that I still love the Lord, and I still have a relationship with Him." Unknowingly, (or not?) she had addressed the two major things that this mother's heart would need to know. Those words are burned into my very heart and soul. Without them, how would I have survived the pain?
The next day in the middle of a busy market where we had shopped, she told me she was finished and was going to leave. There in the middle of the store, she put her arms around me, hugged me tight, and gave me a little kiss on the lips. She said, "I love you, Mom," and then she turned and left. Those words were the last I ever heard from my precious child..."I love you, Mom." To a mother, there are no words lovelier. My last gift from Lisa. They say that in any death, if you look for them, there will be gifts for loved ones left behind. I thank God (and Lisa) for my gifts.
I heard later that she and a friend had gone to visit another friend. They arrived home early that evening. While Lisa was out, her husband came back to their home and again took Hans. Lisa came home to an empty house and faced yet another loss. She phoned a friend and said, "He has taken Hans, and I just can't take all this anymore. I love you. Good-bye." The final straw was a much-loved little gray Schnauzer. She knelt on the floor of their family room where she had dozens of framed photographs of family members surrounding her, and put the gun to her head and fired. I think that she just could not take any more pain and loss. Her husband found her the next day clutching a small figurine of a gray Schnauzer dog. I was told that she left no note. She left behind a sister, Denise, a brother, David, and a string of brokenhearted people who love her and miss her, especially myself.
A part of me died with her...A part that can never be restored. My grief for my daughter has changed my life. It is a living, breathing part of me. It softens with the passing years, but surfaces, unbidden, with the slightest provocation. The same memory that brings a smile one day might well bring tears the next. Jayne Newton, editor of the Atlanta Compassionate Friends newsletter, said of the loss of her son, "It is not my guilt that won't let me forget my child, it is my love for him." A parent's love does not diminish, neither does the desire to see and hold our child. We feel a responsibility to forever take care of our children; but sometimes that responsibility is denied us.
But, life does go on whether we want it to or not; and all these years later, I'm still here. It took most of those years for me to even begin to recover from my loss. If we let it, life can go on in many ways. In 1996, I remarried a very special man. I met him only one year into my bereavement when I was still nearly insane with grief. He supported and loved me through it all, and helped bring me to the point where I can love again and be almost "normal." I believe in my heart that Lisa sent him, knowing that there would be big, empty holes in me that needed to be filled. He brought to our marriage a cute little seven-year-old daughter named Melissa. I have been given another chance to be "Mom" to a little girl. What are the odds? I thank my Heavenly cheerleader, Lisa, and a loving God.
Lisa is still with me in the strongest sense of the word. She began her physical life inside my body; and now that that part of her has gone on ahead, she is still inside me in spirit. We will never truly be apart either in this life or the next. I thank God for the gift of her.
If I could speak to her one
last time, I would say, "Dearest Lisa, my Baby, my Little Lamb, my beloved
child...I will always love you, and forever yearn for you. We will
be together one glorious day where there will be no more tears, no more
sadness, no more sorrows, no more death...Only the love of each other and
Christ. We will never truly be apart either in this life or the next. Until then, He will take care of you...You were my
baby for awhile, now you belong to Jesus."
I know that Lisa's love shines
down on me from Heaven. Her love, like her memory will never fade.~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~ My Child ~~
Would that I could love you more
But, alas, I know not how.
For it tis with my whole being
That I love you now.
Beverly L. Carson
~ Lisa's Headstone ~
~ FOR BOTH OF US ~
As long as I can...
I will look at this world
for both of us.
As long as I can...
I will laugh with the birds,
I will sing with the flowers,
I will pray to the stars,
for both of us.
As long as I can...
I will remember
how many things
on this earth were your joy.
And I will live
as well as you
would want me to live
as long as I can.
~from Wintersun by Sasha~
Lisa & Mom ~ 1988
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~ Home ~
~ Lisa's Story ~
~ The "S" Word (Suicide) ~
~ Lisa's Wedding ~
~ Words of Love From Lisa's Family ~
~ Photos ~
~ Lisa's Friends Remember ~
~ A Different Kind of Love Letter, From Lisa ~
~ Remember Me ~
~ A Love Denied ~
~ A Lamb's Last Message ~
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