Miss Renee

We just never know someone’s story.

Unless we talk to them.

Today we talked.  And listened.

We sat at a ‘bar’.   I ordered iced coffee.   I ordered iced tea for my aunt and my husband, who wasn’t with us yet.   Husband joined us, took a taste of the drink I ordered for him and decided he didn’t like the iced tea.  We had been talking with Miss Renee behind the counter.  But as of yet we hadn’t really met her.   Miss Renee was intent on making sure my husband was satisfied before he left this counter.  He was insisting he would just drink what I ordered him.  I took the tea from him and gave it to my aunt, because she liked it.

Miss Renee's

I pointed out to husband that they had hot chocolate.   He agreed and Miss Renee made him up a lovely hot chocolate.  Finally, he was satisfied.

Then Miss Renee sat behind the ‘bar’.  And she talked with us.

And we finally met her.

We were talking of the loss of life yesterday that we had all read about in the news.  We discussed the circumstances and how the family must be feeling and trying to deal with this loss.  We were all sympathetic.  Miss Renee, however, was very empathetic.

Miss Renee told us how she could relate, she had lost a child in a very unexpected and horrible tragedy.

While Miss Renee was out of town for a basketball tournament her daughter was driving through a green light.   At the same time a man was trying to avoid a traffic check point.  He ran a red light and as a result, hit Miss Renee’s daughter.  Killing her.

Miss Renee told us about the magnitude of the outpouring she received at the loss of her child.  She was overwhelmed by the number of people her daughter’s life had touched.  She shared with us the trial process of the man who killed her daughter.   And she shared with us her coming to terms.   She knows he did not act with intention that day.  But her daughter is still gone.  She knows he did not set out that day to hurt anyone, let alone kill someone.   None the less her child is gone.   Miss Renee said it’s been five years.  And she’s trying.

Miss Renee told us she won’t get to plan or attend her daughter’s wedding.  She won’t get to see and hold the grandchildren.

But what Miss Renee does have, is her daughter’s life, and her daughter’s purpose.

Both Miss Renee and her daughter believed in mentoring youth.  Miss Renee plans on, as part of her healing, and her daughter’s purpose – to create a mentoring program for girls.  To continue what they have both long believed in.

Miss Renee said she feels she is healing.  She managed to tell us about her daughter without breaking down.   Though her eyes got very bright, as did ours.  There will be a day when maybe she can speak to the man who made a horrific decision on a day that greatly impacted the lives of many.   Like she said, what would the consequences have been had he just stopped at that check point?  He wasn’t under the influence.  He didn’t have a license.   Jail?  Bonded out?  A minor inconvenience in the great scheme of things.  Instead, he sits in prison.  His family and friends, how are they impacted?

Miss Renee and her family and friends?   The impact is much different and never reversible.

Miss Renee’s life has been altered.  There are things she can’t plan or do now that were taken away from her.  She can, however, plan something different.  Certainly not better.   But different.  She can plan to continue her daughter’s life – the benefits of her having been here.

Thank you Miss Renee, for sitting with us.  Talking with us.

Letting us be part of your story.

And Tia’s.

Miss Renee

Miss Renee

Thank you.

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36 thoughts on “Miss Renee

  1. Bless you for sharing Miss Renee’s poignant story. What a heart you have, Colleen. ❤

  2. What a wonderful post Colleen, and what a wonderful person Miss Renee is. She shared her story with you and your husband and Aunt and you shared her story with us. The world has become better for it.

    • I hope so Priceless. She was so warm and open with us. I think, for whatever reason, we were meant to be sitting at her coffee bar that morning. SHaring that time and that moment with just her, and her daughter.

  3. Oh what a sad story. There really is no end to the grief with these kind of things, is there? I hope Miss Renee is able to make something positive come of this.

  4. You are beautiful Colleen, first to stay and listen and then share it in here.

  5. reocochran says:

    You were ever so kind to open this story and listen to Miss Renee’s redemption plan for her daughter’s loss. I cannot imagine nor wish to think about such,a life-changing, devastating loss. Colleen, Miss Renee is amazing and her way of healing through a powerful plan of action is so inspirational. Wow, you go, Miss Renee! This story is a blessing for me, but may motivate others who face losses. ♡xo

  6. Mustang.Koji says:

    I am unable to feel the anguish inside her, of her loss of a vibrant daughter through the careless action of another. I sense her fortitude, though, through your story. I know, though, that I will not be as forgiving as Miss Renee. Perhaps if it were a true accident, I may.

    • We never know do we Koji? She amazed me just by sitting there talking with me. SHe still coaches kids basketball. I can only imagine the connection that gives her to her daughter. I’m honored that she shared her daughter with us.

  7. Sending good thoughts, prayers and cyber hugs out to Ms. Renee. Thanks for sharing this story Colleen. ❤
    Diana xo

    • You’re welcome Diane. I hope Miss Renee reads this so she can see the prayers, thoughts and comments. She was the one who shared. I did ask her about writing about her, and she was okay with it. I hope she approves.

  8. niaaeryn says:

    A beautiful and strong woman, and a very sad story, and profound story. To cope with such a loss I cannot fathom. :hugs: to Miss Renee and yourself, and hot chocolate. She has a beautiful soul to be so compassionate after such loss. Thank you for sharing her story.

  9. Jim McKeever says:

    A beautiful post, Colleen. I’m sure Miss Renee could see the empathy among your group, and freely told her story. It’s how she’s trying to heal, and everyone does it differently. I’ve heard many times that the pain and the grief never go away, but the sadness lessens over time. Not in all cases, certainly, but in many. It takes caring human beings like you to recognize that and help it along.

    • Thank you Jim. I hope her sharing with us helped in some small way. I’ve heard the same thing, it never goes away. Sometimes though, we get better equipped at processing it, dealing with it. Stronger? More numb?

      We were all three so with her in the moment. I’m pretty sure she could tell this.

  10. ksbeth says:

    how beautiful and amazing how life continues, even through it’s toughest passages –

  11. markbialczak says:

    You three listening and empathizing and feeling her pain and, yes, her convinction to make her daughter’s memory and life mean something still, I’m sure that helped Miss Renee feel a little better during your time together, Colleen. Thank you for being there for her.

    • It was our honor Mark/MBM. She felt safe, and for that I am grateful. I’m glad that we were there, that day, and open to her. It was beneficial to all of us in one way or another. Thank you my friend.

  12. Debra says:

    Miss Renee must have felt very comfortable with you, Colleen, to share such a deeply sad and personal story. I think that says a lot about you that you were open to talking to someone, when perhaps it would be easier to be wrapped up in your own thoughts. The importance of the human touch never ceases to inspire me. What a sad loss for Miss Renee. I really value her intention to honor her daughter’s memory with such heart and positivity. Beautiful story, well told, Colleen.

  13. People are so interesting.

  14. dogear6 says:

    I’m glad you had a good day and the opportunity to listen and be part of her life for a few moments. It’s just as special that you memorialized it to share with the rest of us as well.

    Nancy

  15. lbeth1950 says:

    Oh thank you and Miss Renee. You’ve brought me to tears.

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