You didn't say, "Goodbye"!
by Kimberly Ann Mays
It was January 10, 2010 when you left us. I called, but you didn't answer. You were already gone! My son, Joseph Nicholas "Nick" Taylor, age 22, was shot and killed. There are no words to express the deep emotions that come with losing a child. Especially one so young. I struggled for months trying to solve my son's death, in order to see that he receive justice for such a brutal death. I failed to succeed at doing so due to the nature of this crime. It took place in a high crime area where illegal drugs, guns and gang activity was commonly known. My son's death was made to look like a self-defense crime. No one would come forward on his behalf due to the fear of retaliation. I found myself so consumed with searching for answers that it drove me insane. Finally, I had to turn it completely over to God and ask Him to bring me and my family comfort and peace. It's been 2 years and 2 and a half months now since he left and the pain is still so difficult. I've not gone one day without thinking about and missing my child. I miss him constantly. We were so close and shared such a wonderful bond. Everything I was and knew has been changed and will never be the same. I'm just now beginning to do things again that before meant nothing to me. It was part of daily life. I couldn't cook any more because I felt guilt that he wasn't here. I just stayed stagnant and watched as the world passed right by everyday. I didn't know what I wanted or where I wanted to go. I spend all of my spare time writing to Nick on the Legacy page that was issued after he passed away. This is my way of coping. I can talk to him as if he's in another state somewhere, unable to write back. I celebrate his birthdays still by having a ceremony with balloon release, flower cake and other special things in memory of him. This will be our third birthday at his grave on May 13 th. It will also be on Mother's Day this year. I continue to give him a Christmas present under the tree and each holiday I include a special moment for him. I still cry. I always will. My faith has grown so much since all of this happened and my relationship with God is stronger than its ever been. I can't tell anyone here that it will all be ok. I would be lying to myself and to others. I can say that God will be right there with you the entire time if you let Him. He's been my only hope and my reason to survive this. I know that someday I will be with my son again. I live each day now for that purpose. I don't know why a parent must suffer the loss of a child, but I do know that God knows what's best for us. For my son, being with God and Jesus is far greater than any place he could be. I love him too much to think differently, even though I miss him severely. My grief continues to exist, but I allow this pain because it reminds me of the wonderful life I had with my son. When I hurt, I feel everything I loved about him and I'm missing him. This is one pain I never hope to lose. It's my way of knowing that I'm still alive and he's not forgotten.