Wednesday, November 10, 2010

JONATHAN, WE MISS YOU

Warning: this is not a lighthearted post.

JONATHAN AND ME   BETTER TIMES 2001
 Startled, I sat straight up in bed. Did I just hear strong knocks on the front door? My heart started pounding. It’s not the first time, so the memories of those past late night knocks and phone calls were quickly flooding my scared mind. Our 16 year old dog is now so hard of hearing that he couldn't confirm anything. By some miracle, Tim, who has been gone almost non-stop on business for months was actually asleep beside me. I hoped what my gut and heart were telling me wasn’t true, but deep inside I knew. I glanced at the clock on Tim’s side: 1:33 a.m. I touched Tim and told him I think someone is at the door. From past experience we both moved quickly. We each looked out different windows to down below. From my angle I saw a car with the headlights on in front of the driveway and Tim saw at least one person on the front porch. They knocked again just as the phone rang. Tim headed for the stairs and as I reached for the phone I saw it was the police department. “Is this the Prass residence? There are officers at your door and you need to let them in”. I knew. I clutched my chest to keep my heart from leaping out as I tried to make it down the stairs. As I was heading down, afraid I would collapse, I heard the officers asking, "Are you Tim Prass?" “Are you the father of Jonathan David Prass?” My poor Tim, he was weak in the knees and I needed to get to him. “Do you have any medical conditions we need to be aware of?” “Is there anyone we should call?” STOP SAYING THAT. “We need to come inside and let’s sit down”. I finally made it to level ground without collapsing and we all headed towards the family room. Tim’s knees were not supporting him sufficiently and I was clutching my chest still trying to prevent my pounding heart from escaping. We finally reached the sofa. One officer got on bended knee and as politely and respectfully as possible said what we didn’t want to hear: Our son Jonathan was found dead in Portland, OR of an apparent overdose. He had been dead for some time.

Breathe. I kept telling myself to breathe. I was just hearing the worst words that I thought I had already prepared myself for, but my mind was jumping to other things. Like I wondered how old these two officers were…I bet Jonathan’s age. I thought about my mismatched nightwear. When I grabbed my favorite pajama pants out of the drawer I realized the matching top was in the dirty clothes. Tired and thinking, “Who cares” I grabbed an extremely old t-shirt that I’d never throw away. I quick glanced down at myself and wondered what they thought of my mismatched attire and if through my clenched hands they could see the worn words World’s Greatest Mom. Isn’t it amazing that Tim was here in town instead of in San Diego. I had to force myself to stay focused on what I didn’t want to hear. I thought what a tough job these officers have and Tim thought it too, because as they were leaving Tim was thanking them for all they do.

It still feels like it’s Friday….just a very long day that won’t end. I know I’m breathing now because I can hear my sobbing. It comes in waves. Tim said it’s like the flu. You think you’re starting to feel better when suddenly your body revolts again.

JENNIFER AND JONATHAN   SPRING 2001
While many of you know our Jennifer, only the people closest to us or who have known us a long time know much about our other child Jonathan or of his constant and intense battle with addiction. It wasn’t that we were embarrassed that he was our son (even though his behavior and choices were often quite embarrassing). It’s just that he stayed in Portland and we didn’t always know the Portland Jon. Frankly, we fervently hoped for the day he could beat this, which appeared to be closer than ever, and we could shout it from the rooftops together with him. I’ve told him that three months sobriety was equal to a college degree in my eyes. The things we rejoiced in looked way different in our little family. Knowing he wasn’t sleeping on the street was a good day for us. Hearing he was still alive after another severe beating brought us to our knees one more time. I haven’t been able to say it outloud or even bear to think it because it’s not the outcome I wanted for my boy, but I hope I will soon be able to rejoice that his suffering is over. He put up a really good fight. I was amazed at his strength, that he was able to pull himself up by his boot straps each day and give it one more try.

We are finalizing plans for a memorial here in Indianapolis and I hope to have that information soon.  His friends in Portland are having theirs on the 14th.  We all need to share how Jon made us laugh and how much we will miss him. 

When we are too weak to pray, your prayers and kind messages are the strength we need to put one step in front of another. One of my Facebook friends grew up in Nashville with my kids and sent me this note.  I thought of all my fabric friends:

I pray that the strength that has sustained you these many years comes to wrap you up like a big quilt and carry you until you are strong again.

MAKING ME LAUGH

159 comments:

  1. There are simply no words. But I hope you can feel the love that I'm sending to you and your family Paula.Thinking of you all xxxx

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  2. Paula,
    I've been praying for you and your family. I also want you to know how very brave I think you are for sharing Jonathan's story. Your story. I hope you will soon have some measure of peace. Hugs, Jen

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  3. I understand what you are going through and I hold you and your family very dearly in my heart

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  4. Dear Paula - I don't have the words to express the sadness I feel for you and your family. Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  5. Oh Paula, I can't imagine what you are going through. Such a handsome young man. I can tell from the pictures that he really loved and enjoyed his mom. Thank you for sharing your story, as hard as it is to tell.

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  6. I'm so sorry. I can't imagine the loss and the pain of losing a son. You are all in my prayers today.

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  7. I am so sorry for your loss. Please know your family is in my prayers.

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  8. Paula, this is so heartbreaking, you have shown incredible strength in this post...may that strength continue to carry you through to healing. My deepest sympathies.

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  9. I cannot imagine your heartache- your little boy-always. My heart goes out to you and I send my love and strength to you and your family to help you through through these days... weeks... years. May there be peace on the horizon.

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  10. Father,
    Shine your Jerusalem Light in their window during this darkness. Fill them with your love and grace and mercy as the hardest days come and go. Wrap them in your arms and carry them while they are weak.
    Amen.

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  11. I am so so sorry for your loss. Although we don't know each, will never meet in person my thoughts and prayers are winging their way to your family.

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  12. Our deepest condolences to you and your family. There is no greater pain, than with a loss of a child. We will keep your family in our prayers.

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  13. I'm so sorry Paula. Thank you for sharing your story and please know that you are always in my heart and prayers.

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  14. Thank you for sharing your story. I have 2 daughters who both went through a dark period of drug addiction. I know how lucky I am. I am so sorry that your son didn't make it out. I feel your pain

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  15. Deepest deepest,sympathies, Paula. I am holding you and your family in my thoughts and prayers. xoxoxo

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  16. Peace that passes all understanding is my prayer for you and your family.

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  17. Praying that God would be your comfort throughout all of this...you have a beautiful family and I hope you know that so many people love you and are here for you. Blessings dear friend!

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  18. Oh, bless you. My brother who didn't have addiction problems but battled other demons that he was to bull-headed to have treated (we assume that he was severely bi-polar)died in a car accident 13 years ago Nov. 8th. He lived his life much like your Jonathan and like you, deep in our hearts we knew that day would more than likely come. I have watched my mother go through this mourn process for all 13 years-- you won't ever stop-- but you do learn that the sun continues to shine and that there are still beautiful things in the world and your heart doesn't necessarily heal, but it develops new pathways to loving and living. I will pray God's peace and comfort for you and your family and that you'll soon feel His light on your face.

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  19. Paula,
    My heart sank when Jenn emailed me the news. I have been praying for you and the family. It hit so close to home and immediately made me think of my brother and how much time he has left on this earth. I am going home this weekend to see if I can smack some sense into him. I know he won't listen if he's not ready. I pray that God can help me get thru to him.
    I wish there were words that could make things better but just know that I am thinking and praying for you.
    xo,
    Missy

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  20. oh, paula, i am so sorry for your loss. all i can say is that you are on my prayer list and your whole family will be thought of often.

    don't forget that God is right there with you. He will give you guidance in each and every moment.

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  21. Just to say that i hope someday this pain can go away and you and your family can find some peace in your hearts.
    My sincerly kiss and hugs for all of you!
    Patricia

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  22. Paula, please know that the crafting community is wrapping you and your family in a virtual quilt of love an prayers right now. (((hugs))) to you.

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  23. Paula, you and your family are in my heart and prayers. I admire your love, courage, and strength in sharing this with us and hope you can feel the love and support we are all sending to you.

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  24. I'm so sorry, Paula. So, so sorry.

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  25. Paula, sharing this chapter of your son's story with us is so incredibly brave and I hope very cathartic for you. Sometimes, writing and reading your own words can help the process of grieving - there are so many details to reconcile in your heart and in your head. I hope that the memory of his laughter brings you peace and comfort at this difficult time. Laugh when you can; cry when you have to.

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  26. Oh Paula. As the mother of two mostly-grown boys, I'm so broken hearted for you. Thank you so much for having the courage to share with us. XOXO

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  27. Paula...so very sorry to hear the sad news of your son. As a parent, I understand the emptiness you feel in your heart. I'm sure you and Tim along with Jennifer did everything you possibly could have. Take care...I have been thinking about all of you.

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  28. I read you story my heart goes out to you.Just remember when you see one set of foot print Jesus is carrying you.I have prayed over you family as soon as i was done with this.Mary Jesus mom knows how it feels to lose a son,so just pray and God will heal the broken parts and missing.Well May God bless You and yours.

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  29. Praying that God will uphold you with His mighty right hand.

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  30. There are no words... My prayers are with your family.

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  31. All our love Paula. Praying for God's strength and grace during this time...xoxo...Jenn

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  32. I am so very sorry Paula. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

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  33. Thinking of you and your family, and praying for comfort and peace for you all. I can only imagine how much you treasure those pictures you shared, in which your love for each other is obvious! So sorry for your loss...

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  34. Prayers and hugs for you. I truly cannot imagine the grief, and I can only echo the setiments in that last quote you posted. I pray that you will find comfort in family and friends during this time.

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  35. Oh Paula, my heart goes out to you & yours. Reading your story, at 6:16am, getting tears in my coffee... I know how you are feeling (haven't lost a child, but my mother, in a similar and abrupt way) and it does get better. Take it day by day, hour by hour. Hold on tight to Tim & family and don't let go. xoxo

    Cynthia (from Delish Mag)

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  36. My heart sank when I read your post. I was hoping you were dreaming. I am so sorry. My thoughts and prayers are with you, Tim, Jennifer and your entire family. Thank you for sharing Jonathan's story. With love,
    Barbara

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  37. You and your family are in my prayers. Thinking of you and Jonathan today. Hugs, Virginia

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  38. Having just lost my son to ALS I understand the level of your pain. Prayer is what will get you through this; along with the love of family and friends. We are your friends and we are praying for you.

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  39. Oh I don't know what words someone can say to help you through this rough time. I feel that a parent shouldn't have to experience the death of a child. But when it happens we are in little pieces....Please know that all of your devoted followers and stragglers here will keep you in our prayers and thoughts.... May God's arms keep you warm and lift you to get through this time of sadness...may his warmth make you strong to walk through your days of loss. May you remember how much he loved you and that he is looking at you and smiling at you right now...Jon will be so proud of your strength Paula.....Be strong .... Be Strong....

    Love,
    Shannon Margaret

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  40. Sending thoughts and prayers to you and your family.

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  41. Thank you so much for sharing this very difficult time with us. I pray that you will be surrounded by the love of family and friends. I am so, so, sorry for your loss.

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  42. You shared the horror so many feel on a daily basis as we wonder why our loved ones were selected to bear such a burden. Wishing you all a peace that can only be found with time and prayer.

    I'm so very sorry.

    Ellen

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  43. I am so sad for you and your family. Thank you for sharing, we love you and are praying for you.

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  44. oh paula, i am so sorry to hear of your loss. please be strong and you and your family will be in my thoughts. take care!

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  45. Paula- I am so sorry. My heart goes out to you and your family. May God wrap His arms around you and hold you tight, comfort you and give you strength. You are in my prayers.

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  46. May the lord bring comfort to your heart and believe that he is in His arms as addiction is to blame not him as a person. I currently have a brother suffering with this and my parents live in the shoes you have worn every day. Many Blessings and may the lords healing hand comfort your home.

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  47. Sending prayers to you and your family! My heart goes out to you.

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  48. Prayers for you and your family. Have no idea what loosing a child feels like. Hope I never have to find out.

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  49. i have shed tears for you and your family. how brave of you to put your pain in words. you continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.

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  50. So so sorry - I can't imagine the heartache... And for sharing your story, as hard as it was to do.
    Give and get plenty of hugs...

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  51. As I read your words, tears stream down my face. I too have a son who is battling addiction in a far away city. I know and remember the middle of the night phone calls and knocks on the door that take your breath away. Know that I pray for you and your family in your grief. Stay strong and know that he loved you in spite of his apparent inability to cope with life and his addiction. I understand all of the feelings that you are going through. I will continue to pray for you.

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  52. Paula (& Jennifer) -

    this is Andrea...Jennifer's highschool friend & college roommate.

    I wanted to tell you both that I only see Jonathan in my mind with a huge smile on his face.

    Of course, I did not see Jonathon much after highschool....

    but...during those years...he brought MUCH laughter to those around him.

    He was a goofy, handsome, complex human being ....

    I will keep "smiling Jonathan" in my memories as I keep your family in my prayers.

    I think it is important that you shared Jonathon's "story" because many go through it silently, grasping for support but to shy to talk about it.

    Andrea

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  53. Paula,
    My heart is so heavy for you and Tim and Jenn. I will continue to pray. I want to do so much more but I feel so helpless from this distance. Please know Joey and I love you and are mourning with you. You are surrounded by so many people who love you.

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  54. my heart goes out to you and your family. xo

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  55. I am so sorry you all have to go through this. I'm thankful you have good memories to go back to. There really are no words. {{hugs}}

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  56. Rest in peace Jonathan!

    Take care Paula! Here comes a virtual quilt from Helsinki for you!

    Hugs,
    Kajsa

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  57. I do not even know you, but I can understand a part of what you are going through. My adult daughter is a recovering drug addict. It has been touch and go at times.

    I'm so sorry to hear about your son...so very sorry. Words can't express my sadness for you and your family.

    How did I find you? Daria posted your story on FB and I felt I needed to respond.

    God bless. Lynn

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  58. Hi Paula,
    I got to your post from Jen's FB page. You should know that there are legions of us you have never met, and may never meet, who are so deeply touched by your loss. Addiction is so pervasive, almost every family I know has been touched by it.
    I find your courage astonishing and hope in the days and weeks ahead you are surrounded by those who love you and are buoyed by their strength.
    Shaya

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  59. I am crying with you and praying for you. I cannot imagine losing a child, but I do understand what addiction does to a family and I am so, so sorry for your loss.

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  60. I am so sorry for your loss, I will keep you and your family in my prayers. May he bless and comfort you.

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  61. My heart breaks for your pain and suffering. I am amazed at your ability to tell this story so soon after your son's passing, and humbled by your incredible strength. Please know that my heart and prayers go out to you.

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  62. Thank you for sharing your story with us in this difficult time. Sending prayers and virtual hugs your way.

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  63. I know I've already told you countless times but I love you and your family dearly and it pains me that you have to go through this. I wish there was something I could say or do that would ease your pain... even a tiny bit. You are so brave and strong to be able to write a post like this. Thank you for your honesty and friendship. I am here for you.

    patty

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  64. Paula...oh how it's not supposed to happen this way! May you and your family find the strength and the courage to heal. And may the light from Jonathan's beautiful soul encompass you all in the process. Thoughts and prayers...Liz

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  65. Paula, I just heard. What strength you have to even be able to write the words down. I can't imagine losing a child. You obviously loved him perfectly the way that Heavenly Father needed you to. I'm so sorry that you didn't get to have the day that he beat his addiction, but at least he'll be at rest now.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you and Tim and your family. You've been through so much in your past, you must be one of the strongest woman I know of.

    I hope that peace and especially comfort are your new companions.

    I'll go hug each of my kids a little tighter now.
    Elizabeth

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  66. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I hope you find some peace.

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  67. Our hearts and prayers go out to you at this difficult time. Thank you for sharing so that we may all hopefully help you carry your heavy heart through this time. May the God of hope bring you peace and strength.

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  68. Paula, I have never actually met you, but I wanted to let you know that my heart is burdened for you and your family. There are no right words to say but know that you are being remembered and lifted up in prayer often. Praying that God will comfort you through your grief and eventually provide peace in your heart. Thank you for sharing about your son.

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  69. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this most difficult time. May God wrap his arms around you.

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  70. Prayer it is...until the day you can start to remember - to focus - to see those "happier times" with your son....prayer it is.

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  71. thank you puala. thank you for being strong enough to share your heart with us. god be with you, always.

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  72. Paula,

    What a brave and profound post, I cannot imagine how you had the courage to even write about your loss. I am sending my deepest sympathies to you and your family for such a profound loss. As a sister to an ex- addict I know how hard the this road must have been for you, and not an easy one to write about. I believe as you do that now your son is at peace, I am forever humbled at your strength and truly believe you are "the worlds best mom!"

    You will be in my thoughts and prayers!! Hugs

    Ellen

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  73. A parent's worse nightmare, loosing a child. I'm so sorry for your and Tim's loss.

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  74. Oh, Paula. Many prayers are surrounding you even now. I prayed for you last night and this morning knowing you deeply need it. Thank you for sharing this and giving each of us one small token, one way to reach into your life through prayer and love. My heart breaks for you and your family, and I pour that out to a loving God hoping his comfort envelops you unceasingly.

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  75. What can we say? Thank you for sharing your story, it is so brave of you, but it's so REAL. Sending hugs and {{prayers}}

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  76. I came across your blog via QuilterBlogs.com. My heart goes out to you, your husband, and your family on the loss of your beautiful son.

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  77. I'm so sorry. My very close cousin OD'd when he was just a week out of his third time in rehab. I know what a difficult journey it is for the one addicted and their family. You will get better. Continue to remember the laughter. You will miss him always but I pray you will soon find the comfort in knowing that you no longer need to worry about him. You, Tim and Jennifer have my deepest sympathy. ((hugs))

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  78. Paula, I am so, so sorry for your loss. It is unimaginable what you must be going through. My heart is broken for you and your family. I'm praying for peace and strength for all of you.

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  79. Although I dont know you or your family...My heart and prayers go out to you in this hard time.
    Olivia

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  80. Paula,

    I will be praying for you and your husband. I'm praying that God will wrap his arms around you so tight that it feels he will never let go (cause he won't!). I'm also praying for God's perfect peace for you in the midst of this storm. I hope that just knowing prayers are going up, even when you can't pray in some ways helps with the healing.

    Hugs,
    Gina

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  81. Paula, I am so so sorry. I can't possibly imagine what you are going through but know that my prayers are with you and your family. May God's perfect love give you comfort and peace now.

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  82. My deepest sympathies for you and your family at this time.

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  83. Paula, words cannot express the sadness I feel for you and your family. I pray that the love and support of your family and friends will give you strength and comfort during this difficult time.

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  84. Paula, words cannot express the sadness I feel for you and your family. I pray that the love and support of your family and friends will give you strength and comfort during this difficult time.

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  85. I'm so sorry for your loss. You and your family will be in my prayers.

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  86. Paula, thank you for the strength to share this with us. My parents live with this with my younger brother and they know the fears when there is a late-night knock. My prayers are with you and I hope you feel the hug around you.

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  87. Paula my heart goes out to you. I pray for comfort and peace for you and your family.

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  88. Paula,
    I will be sending you wishes for strength and peace. I pray for the pain to dissipate and the loving memories to fill you with warmth.
    Lots of love.
    Jess

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  89. Prayers and hugs. There really are no words. Here in MN we have a great place for addiction and families of that have had to deal with it to meet (Hazelton), hopefully there is something in your area as well. Many thoughts go out to your family.

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  90. O, Paula; I am so very sorry to hear of the passing of your son. While this brings closure to a very difficult period, it is definitely not the kind of closure one wants to have. I won't make any silly, trite remarks; all I'll say is that I am praying for you and your family during this very difficult time.

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  91. Dear Paula there are no words to say, just prayers for you your family and Jonathan. There is nothing more tragic then losing a child. Hugs and blessings to all of you Sandra

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  92. Paula,
    I just heard about Jon's passing and am fervently praying for your family.

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  93. Praying God's comfort. I am so, so sorry.

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  94. So sorry for your loss. May you and your family find peace through this...

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  95. Please take care of each other and be easy on yourselves. I understand what you are feeling, my 29 year old son fought addiction for years, but finally gave up eleven years ago.

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  96. My thoughts and prayers continue to be with you and your family. I am so sorry for your loss and pray that you feel God's comfort during this time. One of your friends on Facebook recently said that Jesus saves, and through Him, Jon is saved. I firmly believe this to be true and I pray that this belief gives comfort to your family when you need it most! Love, Caroline

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  97. You don't know who I am at all but I read your story and just cannot imagine your pain and heartache. I am a mother to 2 and I cannot even begin to imagine what you are going through but I will be thinking of you with much sadness for you all.

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  98. Paula,

    My deepest sympathies to you and your family. My brother lost his only child to a heroine overdose last October just a few weeks short of his 20th birthday. My heart continues to break into a million pieces for his loss, and now it breaks for you, too. Thank you for sharing Jonathan's story.

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  99. I am so deeply sorry for your loss Paula. You do not know me--I am a stylist with Stella & Dot; however, I feel I know you through the light and happiness that is Jen.

    You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I hope your faith in God and the Lord keep you strong through this time.

    Take care.

    Sincerely,

    Cricket Cantonwine

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  100. Paula, I am so sorry. Jonathan will continue to live through those he loved, and those who loved him during the good times and the dark times. Thank you for sharing your story. Through it, you may never know the lives touched or saved. May our prayers sustain and strengthen you during coming days as you gather, remember and celebrate your dear son's life.

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  101. My heart breaks for you and your family. Thank you so much for sharing Jonathan and your story with us. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

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  102. Paula, I know you don't know who I am, but I feel as though the fabric world is a family of sorts, regardless of how many of us have ever met in person or not. My heart broke for your when the news first circled Twitter, but now even more so hearing these details. There are are never the right words to say when someone is in this situation, but I just want you to know that I am thinking about and praying for your family. *hugs*

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  103. devastating. I'm so terribly sorry for you and your family.

    Corrie:)

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  104. Paula, I have been thinking of you and Jennifer and Tim every day. I know first hand the sharp knife of addiction. I also have a sibling who is fighting. It is a heartbreaking and devestating and suffocating disease. I have shared your story with him and please know that Jonathan's story will make a difference in his life. Thank you for sharing..it is a very difficult thing to do. You are my hero.
    Wishing you peace.
    xo
    Simone

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  105. I am so sorry for the loss of your beloved son.
    --Cathy

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  106. Everyone has said what I wanted to say, but I wanted to say how sorry I am for your loss. My thoughts are with you and your family.

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  107. My husband is one of the agents who fights this awful drug war, but hearing real life like this reminds us how small his impact is. It is so hard to see what good could come out of something like this, but I think it started with your words shared with others. You are so real, honest and strong. By reading the comments, you know you have touched others. I'm so sorry for what you must be going through, but I thank you for sharing it with us.

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  108. I am so sorry for your loss, Paula. Thank you for being willing to share. I am praying for you and your family.

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  109. Paula...Your family is in my thoughts and prayers. You are very strong for sharing your story. Sharing and talking about what happened is great therapy.

    Those late night knocks are horrible. I had one nine years ago and it was my husband dead from a car accident.

    I will pray for your family through this difficult and horrible time.

    ((HUGS))
    Julie

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  110. Paula, please know that a mother of two teenage boys in Jacksonville, Florida, is praying for strength and grace for you and your family, and for all who knew and loved Jonathan. Also please know that by posting about Jonathan, you are helping mothers and children all over the world. In Jonathan's honor, I pledge to do everything in my power to keep my sons from ever trying drugs.

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  111. I sobbed as I read your words and looked at the photos of your beautiful precious son. I am so very sorry. We lost my beloved grandson Henry to the same horrible disease on May 31.

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  112. Thank you for sharing. Prayers Love and Hugs coming your way.
    Bev.xoxo

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  113. Paula, my heart goes out to you and your family during this challenging time. While I don't have children, I do have sisters that I love dearly and I can't bear to imagine how painful it must be for you all. My prayer for you is that each day gets a little brighter and that through all the tears, happy memories bring a little laughter. Hold on to that tee shirt with all your heart, you are "World's Greatest Mom."

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  114. I am so so sorry. My heart is with your family.

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  115. My heart is heavy for you. Keeping you and your in my thoughts.

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  116. I'm so sorry for your loss. What a handsome young man. You can just see in the pictures how much you loved each other. Praying for all of you.

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  117. I am here from Kate Granju. I am so, unspeakably sorry for your loss. I know addiction and it is in my family, I understand the fight and the struggle and watching it wear down the person you love. I will say a prayer for you and your family and your son's spirit.

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  118. I wish you strength at this most difficult time,
    Much love.
    Andi x

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  119. Oh Paula..I barely have words to express my feelings for you right now. I stopped immediately upon reading this post and prayed for you and your family. Thank you for being brave and for sharing Jonathan's story. I send you love, Terri

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  120. I wish I had words for you. I am a 35 year old recovering addict. On November 22nd of this year I will celebrate 1 year clean from a crack cocaine and opiate addiction that has nearly killed me several times. I read your story, (found you through a friend of yours who also lost her son to addiction) and my heart breaks. My sponsor once told me, 'our people just don't make it kid', so it is not new to me to hear of folks dying from this disease, (I've lost seven friends this year) but it is something entirely different to hear the broken heartedness of family that cared and loved. I know this is to much information... but with tears, great sadness and compassion and understanding far beyond words I tell you thank you. Thank you for loving one of us. I'll keep you in my prayers!

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  121. here via katie alison gradjus blog...

    my sympathies
    erika

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  122. Dear Paula, I admire the way you write and share this terrible tragedy with all of us. There are no words any of us can say to help. All we can do is to let you know we think of you and pray for you. May the hugs of our virtual quilting family comfort and support you a little.

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  123. I pray you and your family get thru this someday. You've touched many hearts with your post, thank you, hugs and prayers from Texas, Elaine

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  124. Such a terrible illness that you wouldn't wish apon anyone! You are a amazing, thankyou for sharing your strength and inspiring others to be strong. ox

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  125. my heart just breaks for you and your family. my prayers and thoughts are with you.

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  126. Oh what heartbreak for you and your family. I'm sorry to read of your loss. RIP, Jonathan.

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  127. Dear Paula,

    I am so very sorry for the loss of Jonathan. Please accept my deepest sympathy and know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  128. Paula,

    I am so sorry. Thank you for sharing this with us. I am praying for you and your family.

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  129. I would like to give my sincere condolences to you and your family. I hope you can take comfort in the happy times and the love that shines through in the pictures you shared.

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  130. Here from Katie Allison Granju. I am so sorry and cannot imagine your grief. May you find the strength to put one foot in front of the other as the days wear on.
    Claire R.

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  131. So very sorry for your loss. My heart was pounding as I was reading about it. I can't imagine what it would have been like to have experienced that visit from the police. Your story hit home in more ways than one. First, I live in Portland and second, my 17 year old son OD'd on heroin in San Diego (he lived) in March. I got a call from his father. It was both shocking and horrific and I was gasping for air. He is here with me now and thankfully, doing very well. I wish you some peace as you navigate this heart wrenching experience.

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  132. I am so sorry for the heartbreaking loss of your beautiful boy Jonathan. I wish you and your family peace and happy memories at this sad sad time. Sarah xxx

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  133. Paula, know that we all are here praying for you and your family, your loss is a great one.

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  134. Wishing I could send a wordless hug to you, because no words are enough. Heartbreaking. Sending love and strength your way, hoping you feel loved.

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  135. I'm so sorry and I will be praying for all of you.

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  136. I can not even imagine the pain you and your family are going through. A parents worse nightmare. My prayers are with you and your family. May God give you the strenghth you will need to get through this.

    Linda

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  137. I also have a son who battles addiction and alcoholism - my heart is so heavy for you! I found you through another blog and had to click and read your story. I am so painfully sorry for you and your family. I may be a stranger but I am feeling your pain. God bless you!

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  138. so much love is being sent your way. i hope it sustains you during this most terrible of times. <3

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  139. I am so very sorry for the loss of your son. I too am the mother of a beautiful boy that has battled addiction and know that horrible sickly feeling each time the doorbell or phone rings. I'm praying for you and your family as you learn to live life once again.

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  140. Paula and Tim, you and your family are in my prayers. XOXO, Kelly

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  141. I understand and HOPE God will comfort you and your family during this time.

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  142. My heart aches for all of you who loved your son. And for all who continue to go through the same thing each day. Sending much love.

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  143. I don't know you but found you by way of mamapundit and I have no idea how I foudn her.

    I'm so sorry for you loss. As a recovered addict, and a child who also is, I am so grateful for our lives and the blessings God has given us. Reading this makes me more grateful my daughter didn't descend this low. So thankful.

    I am praying for you in your loss.

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  144. I'm so sorry Paula. You are and will continue to be in my prayers. God is good and He will make good of your sons passing. There will be a day when this burden and pain is washed away. Let God carry you through. Hugs for you and yours.

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  145. I'm so very sorry for the loss of your beautiful son. A life cut short so tragically. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

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  146. I felt my heart beating both in my stomach and in my throat as I read your post. Thank God Tim was there with you. I am so very sorry you have to experience the devastation of losing your son. You're in heart and in my prayers. xoxo

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  147. I'm so moved to tears and my heart aches for you I can hardly see to write this note. I pray God grabs hold of your entire family in one big hug with all His strength and might as you take comfort in His arms. Praying also that God would clearly reveal to you each day just how close He really is. Hugs OOOx

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  148. With sympathy to you and your family at this difficult time.

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  149. Dearest Paula...You have been in my prayers and thoughts for days now...it just won't leave my mind. You have shared so much - blogs are such a unique medium...you get to feel so close to people you've never met. Know that I am sending you love. I have also experienced loss via addiction. Having it be your own child must be beyond words...but I have a shadow of understanding of the uniqueness of the grief. Love and Prayers.

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  150. My deepest sympathies to you and your family at this difficult time. I pray that God will wrap you in his love and comfort you.

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  151. You are so brave and so strong, and thank you for sharing. I am so deeply sadden over your loss, Paula. To all of you. So typical of you to be so thoughtful of others (the police officers) in your time of horror and pain. My you be comforted by all the kindness and love you've put into the universe... that it is all now coming back to you - and hugging you and giving you strength. You are loved, Paula. I love you, Monica

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  152. Paula, you are one brave woman to open up the depths of your heart and share your loss with us. I am truly saddened and sorry, and wish you and your family love, comfort and peace.

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  153. I am going to pray for you and cry with you. My heart aches for you Paula. May God bless you.

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  154. I have been thinking about you and your family so much since reading this post. I said a prayer at Thanksgiving for you and asked God to wrap you up in his loving arms and comfort you. I hope you are able to feel him doing just that. As the holidays come and go and we all are able to run about in our usual fashion, please know there are moms out there praying and thinking about you. As my family continues to deal with addiction of a son, we grieve with you. I hope you are able to draw strength from the heartfelt words of strangers.

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  155. I am so sorry for your loss. We lost my brother this year after a long struggle with mental illness. It's just the worst thing in the world. Sending you good thoughts as you navigate these dark days.

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