|I must force myself to
look upon the familiar things, the coat hanging on the chair, the hat in
the hall…..To ease the pain I took over some of her things for myself.
I wore Her shirts, sat at her writing desk, used her pens to acknowledge
the letters of condolence; and by the very process of identification with
the objects she had touched, felt the closer to her…Daphne Du Maurier
It is so hard to try to
pick memories from my daughter's life. There are so many things that it
is difficult to choose what to write. She was happy most of the time. She
loved being at home and having all of us around her. Ashley loved family
things. She was quiet and shy and it took her a while to get to know people
and for her to relax and be herself. Often, people would think her unfriendly
because of that shyness. But once you got to know her, she was very easy
to know and love. The things I guess I remember now are all the last memories
that I shared with her. Things from her childhood do not seem as important
as those last months of her life. We had talked a lot of school and her
life after graduation. She did so want to make her life count. She wanted
to do something important. Important to her was helping people, and those
she wanted to help the most were children. Ashley had a way with kids.
We often called her the pied piper, for everywhere we went, she attracted
children. They all wanted to sit with her and sometimes at church she would
have 4 or 5 kids on the bench with her, but she would always be smiling.
She liked to give and do things for others. She had her own ways and she
certainly had her temper, too. She would get upset sometimes about things
and say her speech about it, but she never went to bed or out the door
without making amend's first. She never left the house without saying ""Bye,
I love you, Be Careful." Those words became her trademark. We all knew
she would say them and now we cherish those words. She wrote notes to all
of us also. I still find little post-it notes stuck places. I found a few
in the top of my kitchen cabinets recently, just a few smiley faces and
the sentence "Ashley loves all her family" written on it. I found them
in the phone book, in my address book, in places that I cannot figure out
why they are there. I do not question, I just treasure those little messages
from her. Ashley has 3 brothers, 1 sister and 1 nephew that have had to
learn to live with not having her here to share things with. John and I
now must figure out how to go on living with this hole in our hearts. Our
world is darker now, for some of the light went out the day Ashley Marie,
age 18, left us all here.
Ashley was on her way home
from school that day. She was a senior at Covenant Christian Academy. She
was looking forward to graduation and the future looked bright for her.
She had accomplished so much in her short life, so much more than most
adults think of doing. She had made her mark on the world. Her death left
many broken hearts and touched the lives of many of her friends. She had
stayed after school for basketball practice. She worked at Bruster's Ice
Cream Shop and was on her way to work. She had driven only a couple of
miles from the school when a man ran a stop sign and violently took her
life. She was gone before I ever knew it, I never had a chance to say goodbye.
It has been a year now, and the loneliness and hurt are still with us.
We miss her more each passing day. She is greatly loved and missed by all
who knew her.
IT BROKE OUR HEARTS
TO LOSE YOU BUT YOU DID NOT GO ALONE
A PART OF US WENT WITH
YOU THE DAY GOD TOOK YOU HOME
A MILLION TIMES WE'VE
MISSED YOU, A MILLION TIMES WE'VE CRIED
IF LOVE COULD HAVE SAVED
YOU, YOU NEVER WOULD HAVE DIED
NOW TO THE GRAVE WE
TRAVEL WHERE FLOWERS ARE PLANTED WITH CARE
NO ONE KNOWS THE HEARTACHE
AS WE TURN AND LEAVE YOU THERE
IF LOVE COULD BUILD
A STAIRWAY AND HEARTACHE BUILD A LANE
I'D WALK THE PATH TO
HEAVEN AND BRING YOU BACK AGAIN.
IN LOVING MEMORY OF
ASHLEY MARIE SOCKWELL, 1-31-78……..10-22-96
TCF Atlanta | Wall