A Daughter’s Love

A while ago I found a message Shea had written to me about 2 weeks before she died.

Thank you for everything! I know I am not the best daughter in the world. I am really messed up.
I wish you the best. I miss you already. I have for many years! I can’t be a baby again, but I will TRY to be a young lady.
I am very lucky to have you as a mother who loves and cares for me. I hope this will be for the best. Both of us deserve to be free to grow. You are my turtle dove. We will fly away together one day and never look back. It will be everything we have dreamed of.
I love you, Mother, and will write often and make you proud! I will also be with MiMi and Aunt Iris. I need them as much as they need me. Uncle Mark, Aunt Mary and Matthew too.

I am blessed! Tell Pete I love him and he is in my prayers.


In Feb. 2011, she had moved from AL to LA to live with my brother, Mark. My mother and aunt lived right next door so Shea helped them out a lot when she could. She wanted to start a new life in LA but became very sick shortly after she moved there. When she mentions the turtle doves, it is because we had given each other a small ceramic turtle dove 15 yrs. earlier and had both kept them as a symbol of our love for each other and that we would be together forever. I still have mine beside the candle I keep lighted in her memory.

I read this note she wrote so close to her death and wonder if she knew somehow she was leaving me. It brings up so many questions about her state of mind at that time. I wonder if she was saying goodbye or was it just a sign of her struggle to hang on a little while longer.

I have stacks and stacks of letters she wrote to me. All of them expressing how much she loved me. I can’t help but cry when I read them. God help me, I still miss her with every breath I take.


Christmas Day 2014

Merry Christmas, my precious child.

Shea, I thought of you every day during this most Holy of seasons. I remember how much you loved Christmas and missed the time we always spent together getting ready for the holidays. I miss how you always decorated the house and it would look so beautiful. You always had such good taste when it came to decorating. It was a talent you did not get from me, but I was always proud of you because every decoration had to be just so perfectly placed. I have not put up not even one decoration since you have been gone.

This year since moving back home around family, I have had to force myself to participate in the holidays. Being around everyone’s grand babies has been hard. I feel so alone without you and wanted you to have a normal life, married, and having children of your own. It made me so sad to see that you missed out on so much of life and were taken so young. You deserved better and if I could have given you that life, I would have done anything to see that you had it. I still ask God, why my child? Why not me? I would have gladly given God my life, to let you live. But I know I cannot bargain with God. This was His plan.

I know you were with me through the holidays, holding me up, protecting me from my own pain long enough to get through each day. But, that’s not how it should have been. I am your mother. My job was to protect you, and I could not do that. God’s will is so much stronger than even the love I feel for you.

You are my greatest accomplishment. I am thankful for our years together but I wanted more. I will always want more time with you in my life. There is a big hole in my heart that can only be filled by you. So, I count the days until we will be together again. It is then I will feel whole again. Until that day comes, I will have to survive with memories of our time together and pray you are with me in spirit.

I love you with all of my heart and miss you as if you left only yesterday. Time has stood still without you.

Your mother always

Hills and Valleys

While I was going through my files the other day, I came across an email that Shea had written to her father. A little background about her dad………………we divorced when Shea was 4 yrs. old. He immediately moved to Spain. He is a geophysicist and explores for oil mostly in the Middle East and Russia. He never paid court ordered child support until I sued him when Shea began High School. He never exercised his visitation rights unless she called him begging to see him. His permanent home was in Houston and she had 2 half brothers she adored but never got to see. She saw him “maybe” once a year until she was in High School. She never received a phone call or gift from him on her birthday or holidays.

The facts are that she was abandoned by her father from age 4. The only contact she had with him was when she initiated it. But my kind and loving girl never gave up on him and she adored her father unconditionally.

In her mid twenties he was living in Russia and had been there for many years. He called his sister and told him that he would not be in contact with any family members and that they would not be able to reach him in any way. So, for over 15 yrs., Shea did not know exactly where her father lived, had no phone number, address, and none of her family on his side knew how to reach him either. She still held on with hope and never doubted that he loved her and no matter what he did, she would always love him and she did.
The email I found that Shea had written was to her father’s last known email address so it did not reach him but I would like to share it with you. She wrote:


I have written to tell you how much I love you. I have heard what has been going on and how those jerks will not renew your visa. I understand you need to travel because of your type of work. I there is anything I can do or any phone calls I can make for you. Helping you would mean so much to me.

Well, I am healed from my leg surgery but I have gained an awful lot of weight. It will take a while to get 30lbs. off. Anyway, I will do it!

I finally bought a car with my own money. It is a 92 Ford Explorer 4X4 with leather upholstery, the Eddie Bauer edition. It has quite a few miles on it but was owned by a mechanic and is in top condition.

Here’s my favorite poem I thought might make you feel better.

It’s In The Valley I Grow

Sometimes life seems hard to bear,
Full of sorrow, trouble and woe,
It’s them I have to remember
That it’s in the valleys I grow..

If I always stayed on the mountain top,
And never experienced pain,
I would never appreciate God’s love
And would be living in vain.

I have so much to learn,
And my growth is very slow,
Sometimes I need the mountain tops,
But it’s in the valleys I grow.

I do not always understand
Why things happen as they do,
But I am very sure of one thing,
My Lord will see me through.

My little valleys are nothing
When I picture Christ on the cross,
He went through the valley of death,
His victory was Satan’s loss.

Forgive me Lord, for complaining
When I’m feeling so very low,
Just give me a gentle reminder
That it’s in the valleys I grow.

Continue to strengthen me, Lord
And use my life each day
To share your words with others,
And help them find their way.

Thank you for valleys, Lord
For this one thing I know
The mountain tops are glorious,
But it’s in the valleys I grow.

Shea loved our Lord even though her life was filled with so much pain and confusion. She never questioned “why me?”. She just did the best she could. I will always miss her loving spirit, beautiful smiles, and love for everyone. How did I ever deserve to have such a wonderful daughter for 37 years? I just thank God everyday for His gift.
BTW, she never heard from her father again before she died. He called me 8 months after her death and said “I’m really sorry. All I ever wanted was for her to be happy”. Honestly, if I had not still been in shock, I would have exploded on him, but it is just as well that I had nothing to say to him. Shea was gone. It would have changed nothing.

Much love to you all,

Anniversary Dates

October 19′ 2011, the day you went to live with our Lord.
That day is burned in my heart and will always be remembered by me and those that loved you.

I can feel you are with me today, holding me up so that I do not fall. I have used your strength and your love for two years now to help me carry on in this life without you. It has been the struggle of my life and always will be.

he only way I can understand your short life and why you had to leave is that God sent you to this world as one of His “victim angels”. You were here to teach others so many things, to smile through troubles, love others with all your heart, and always keep a kind heart no matter what betrayals you may face, to turn your back on Satan, and fight for the good in all people and God’s animals.

Your life was not easy on this earth but I will never forget your beautiful smile when I am filled with sadness. I was so blessed to have been your mother. Thank you for all the love we shared throughout the good times and the bad. I understand your work here was done and God called you back to Him. Your suffering was over when He called you Home.

When I feel so lonely and sad I try my best to remember this passage from the Bible.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms, if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going”.
John 14: 1:3

You are now in a place of quiet and love that is so much more than you ever had in this life. Every day I hear your voice, feel your presence surrounding me, and I know you are reminding me that we will be together again. Remember that I am patiently waiting for that day.

I love you now as I loved you when you were here. A mother,s love for her child never dies but grows with every breath. Time will pass, my life will go on, and you will remain constant in my thoughts, actions, and my heart.

Until we meet again, I am your mother forever. I love you and miss you, my darling daughter.


I have been thinking about my mother a lot lately. She died within months after Shea. It was hard to believe that God would take her when I needed her the most. My mother was my very best friend. We talked on the phone every day at least once. We never ran out of things to talk about. One day I asked her what her favorite poem was. She didn’t even have to think about it and answered that it was “Tree”. She recited it to me from memory and I never forgot that moment. I would like to share it with all of you.

“I think that I shall never see,
A poem a lovely as a tree,
A tree whose hungry mouth is pressed,
Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast,
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray.
A tree that in summer wears,
A nest of robins in her hair.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

It seems even more beautiful now that she is gone. I still talk to her each day and ask her to help me find peace. I know she hears me and I feel her presence all the time. There is nothing more glorious than to have a mother that gave all the love she had to her children. When she faced dying, she told us she was not afraid, but she didn’t want to leave her children. How blessed I was to have known her much less have someone so special as my mother. At 83, when she left this world, she was still beautiful, smart, and joyful. She was so full of life right up to the last moment. She was one of those rare people that you immediately love because you can feel she was so full of love for others. I hope that I have even a small amount of her in me.

Much love to all,

MiMi and Aunt Iris

Posted by graceofmyheart on September 7, 2012 at 4:15 PM      Comments comments (0)


My Darling Shea,


Aunt Iris left us on July 1, my birthday and MiMi passed on August 23. I know that you already know this because you are together with them in Heaven. How great is our Lord that we can all be reunited after this life. I know you were waiting and calling them home. I was so relieved to know that you would have them there with you. I always thought of you being so alone and it would make me cry. Now I am comforted in knowing that MiMi is with you and PawPaw. MiMi was so at peace with her passing. She simply shut her eyes and went to sleep which is what I thought would happen and she proved that life on this earth is impossible to hang on to forever. I never thought of my life without my mother. I am writing to you from MIMi house where I am packing up her house.


Shea, MiMi was so proud of you because you were so happy and had such a big heart in spite of your many troubles. She grieved your passing and had many questions, like we all had, about how such a loss could happen so suddenly and without warning. We have all learned to accept what we cannot change. It has been hard for me especially since I will never understand why you had to leave when you did but I can accept that God calls the shots and his decision to take you was His alone. I will forever miss you.


When you see MiMi and Aunt Iris tell them for me that I miss them. Their presence on earth had such a profound influence on my life. I hope you will be at peace with them now and know always in your heart that I will be there with you soon. Life on earth is so short but eternity with God goes on forever.


I love you so much, my child, my love forever.



Happy Birthday, My Darling Girl

Happy birthday my darling girl,

I will never forget the day you finally made your way into this world. You were so tiny and beautiful. I only got a glimpse of you through the window but I knew you were so special.

I had spent 6 yrs. trying to have a baby and against what all the doctors said, it finally happened and there you were. Perfect. I was delighted and never forgot to thank God every day for giving you to me.

You were a hyper little thing from the first few moments of life. You kicked up such a fuss in the baby nursery at the hospital that they put you in a separate area from the other babies. You were already kicking your legs and moving your arms all around that they couldn’t keep a blanket on you. I knew then you were going to be so full of life and such a hand full. My work was going to be cut out for me early on.

When we came home, you only slept for an hour at a time around the clock. I remember being so tired from lack of sleep. But, I didn’t care. You were mine no matter what.

I doubt if there are birthdays in Heaven but here In this life I will never forget September 1st as the most special day of my year.

Remember how special you were to your mother from the day you were conceived. There is nothing I’ve ever achieved in my life that ever came close to giving birth to you. You made my life worthwhile. You will always be remembered on this special day as “my baby”. I love you and celebrate this day in my heart.

With all my heart,

Remembering Jennifer Shea McGee