Dear Andrew, I met your son.

photoDear Andrew,
I had an amazing day yesterday. I met your son for the first time. Mommy, Nicole and I took a ride to Long Island and we met our grandson, and Nicole met what will be her only nephew.

Your son is gorgeous. I want you to know that, but I am sure you already know that. He is playful, adventurous, funny, and so happy. He smiled the entire time we were with him. He reminds us of you when you were a little boy. He has beautiful red hair, just like you used to have. He has wide round eyes – just like Jovi’s. He has your walk and your quick feet, and he is small and petite like Jovi. He is the perfect mix of the two of you.

We brought him a few things, from all of us. First, we brought him a stuffed giraffe, just like you guys gave him last year and when he was born. He immediately took and played with it, and of course shoved it into his mouth. And after a few minutes threw it down and went onto the next toy. But he kept on going back to it, kept on picking it up and playing with it. Little does he know the link between that little stuffed animal and his parents. We will keep giving him a giraffe every year when we see him, as long as we can, and one day he will wonder why, and he will read the letters I am writing him and realize it was the first and only toy his mom and dad gave him when he was just a few days old. We also gave him a hockey stick. Not just any stick, but the one’s we gave out at your Bar Mitzvah. He grabbed the middle of it, but Nicole quickly corrected him and taught him to hold the right end of the stick – hopefully that will stick. There were also a couple of small foam pucks for him to hit around. He didn’t know what to do with them yet, but I am sure he will learn soon.

Nicole took to him so well. She picked him up and held him – and she smiled – and I cried inside. She took pictures of herself holding Tiger, and insisted that I take more of them as well with her phone. This way she will forever have them with her. People call him Tiger because of his gorgeous red hair, just like you, Jovi and the nurses called him Tiger in the hospital when he was born – it stuck.

I held him. I held him like I had held you so many years ago. I was proud of him, and loved him so much, although I have only known him a few minutes. He is part of me, he is part of you. He is the part of you that is still here on this planet, that will forever be here.

I looked around, and I did not see you. But I know that you were there. I know that you are always there with him. I know that you will forever watch over your son, protecting him, showering him with love from heaven, and being his guardian angel throughout his life. You will protect him and help him make tough decisions, just like your father did for you, for as long as I was allowed to.  He will one day want to know more about you, and hopefully in the letters that Mommy, Jovi and I are writing him he will know you as well as if you were still here holding his hand. That is our job now, to leave you legacy to your son so that he knows where he came from, and to hopefully guide him in some small way to where he might want to go.

Will he be a reader or a writer? An athlete, or as Nicole says, a N.A.R.P.? Will he want to know all about you and one day question us about everything you were, or will he just read the letters we write and be happy? Who knows. But no matter what – he is your son, and he will always be your son. His parents tell us he loves puzzles, and loves solving things. We immediately thought of your Rubic’s Cubes. He has so much of you in him.

We were with his parents, and the way their faces lit up when they held him was amazing. The words they used to describe their son just filled our hearts with warmth and love. The love they have for him is immeasurable, just like your love for your son when you met and held him. They are amazing parents you and Jovi chose – you guys did a great job.

I am home now. I am also at a different place in life than I was a few days ago. For the first time I held my grandson, i looked into his eyes, and knew he was loved, and when I looked into his eyes, I saw you looking back at me. I see you, and although you are not here with us, you left this world an amazing gift. This world, as well as Tiger’s home, is a better place for you having been here for your short number of  years. You gave life and happiness to a family that could not have it without your love and your baby. You and Jovi did something so incredibly generous and without any hesitation or regret, Heaven has a special place for you.

I hope that you can one day visit Tiger, and for him to know his father came to see him. It might be a dream, or a butterfly, or a found coin on the floor, but I know that he will love you as you love him and as we love you. I am sure you will see him graduate kindergarten one day, then high school an college, and you will be as proud of him as his parents are.

Love never dies, only people do.

By the way, a NARP is a Non Athletic Regular Person.

14 thoughts on “Dear Andrew, I met your son.

  1. Mark Deutsch

    Perry, thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. The love within you comes shining through with every word you write.

    Reply
  2. Susan Wallace

    Wow… Perry, I am taken aback by this post. I don’t think I will ever look at a giraffe in the same way! Something so common can, at the same time,be an uncommon secret. I am so thrilled that you were able to meet your grandson and that you see so much of Andrew in him… As you said, I’m sure Andrew is watching over him, loving him, and will appear in mystical and mysterious ways. The fact that you are all writing letters to this little boy will undoubtedly shape his perception of Andrew. My heart is happy that you met, played with and made some memories with Andrew’s son. May that practice continue throughout the years! May God bless and keep you all in His heart…

    Reply
  3. Ann Zanette

    Perry – what a touching post, can’t stop the tears. I am a FIRM believer in angels. I also am a believer that everything happens for a reason. Of course at times we don’t understand the reason. Before last week, I had no idea that Andrew had a child. When you initially posted about your grandson, I instantly felt (knew) that the birth of this beautiful child was a gift for you and your family and Jovi from Andrew. I agree with you, love never dies….

    Reply
  4. Julie Zukof

    Beautiful words perry, I’m so sorry for your loss but glad to hear there is a piece that lives on and brings you joy

    Reply
  5. Patti

    My tears are flowing with sadness and happiness for all.. Sadness of your loss of ANDREW and happiness for your visit of your Grandson…May your little one bring you Love, Peace and Joy Always GOD bless him With much compassion, Patti

    Reply
  6. Hope

    I was in tears reading this Perry, because I felt all the emotions behind your words. So happy you had that day. Andrew is always with you, I believe.

    Reply
  7. Mandy

    Perry. I can barely see, as I wipe away tears. I am so happy for you and Dorothy and Nicole. This is a great gift.

    Reply
  8. Sally

    Perry, Such a beautifully written tribute to your son for the joy he has brought that loving couple. Of course, Andrew will be watching over his son and protecting him as his Guardian Angel. Tiger will grow up knowing about Andrew and appreciating him until they meet. Meanwhile, you are blessed to have him in your, Dorothy and Nicole’s lives and hopefully Jovi’s as well!

    Reply
  9. Mom

    I saw pictures of my beautiful, beautiful great Grandson this week-end. Perry, like you said, he has a lot of Jovi and Andrew in him but that gorgeous red hair is Andrews. I feel much better for the first time in a long time seeing him so happy and cheerful. I know one day I will meet him and let him know he has a great Grandma who will love him always !!! Thank you for the wonderful pictures. I love you all with all of my heart.

    Reply
  10. K'Daya

    Just simply beautiful I do not have any words very touching. Glad u spent time with your grandson. Your writings are amazing.

    Reply
  11. Pat

    To the lovely father that is writing these. Thank you. I am seeing in writing a lot of my thoughts and feelings that I have not been able to put down on paper since I lost my 6 year old son Mikey in 1987 to Leukemia. He suffered for one year, though if you were able to ask him he would say he was very, very happy. Such a tragedy to have lost him, he would be an amazing 34 year old man now.

    My family is getting smaller which means that the people that remember my Mikey are dying. I am his mother, and I do have another son who is now 32, and everyone thought my sons were twins. Their father died 3 years ago, and even though we were divorced he always called me on Mikey’s birthday and the date of his death. So now I do not have him to share with anymore, and my mother is 89 and fading mentally, so pretty much it is just me having the memories. My 32 year old was 4 when his brother died, and he claims not to have memories of him. I doubt that is true, but I believe he has tucked these feelings somewhere in his brain to protect himself emotionally.

    I will continue to read your writings, two or three at a time, until I catch up to your most current one. Thank you.

    Reply
  12. Mitch Carmody

    Perry, I am so sorry for you death of your son Andrew and that you joined this club of mourning and survival from a child gone too soon. My father also died when I was young (15), my brother when I was 21, my twin sister and her two sons when I was 29 and my 9 year old son when I was 32, and then my mother when I was 42, but nothing rocked my world like the death of my son. I stood upon the classroom desk of my life, like the students in the Dead’s Poets society and never came back down, there was no going back, or bouncing back from this. I too find my solace in writing, it is above all else cathartic for the soul, but so helpful to others to understand the forever life changing ramifications of living with loss. You do your son proud. Your write prolifically, honestly and beautifully. A dear friend of my mine just released her book about her son who was also a snow boarder, loving Colorado like Andrew, same age. I its call ” Flying High in Spirit” by Mikey Morgan. Her son Mikey wrote the book posthumously through her and its a fascinating read about continuing connections and the afterlife. I will be in Denver/Fort Collins for a week in March speaking for several different grief organisations and spending time with relatives, not sure where you live today. Twenty eight years ago I was an maintenance engineer at a refinery writing training manuals working for an oil conglomerate, today I write for the bereaved and have spoken at almost every major city in this country, and have spoken in Newtown three times, serving the bereaved is my life. Joy has returned and I my life is filled with gratitude and a sense of purpose meant for my life. Hope to meet you sometime. God bless you on your continuing journey. Love never dies.

    Reply

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