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I write to keep the memory of Tommy alive, to never be forgotten.  Tommy was my only child, my son. 

Tommy died May 29, 2010 on a Saturday evening ... he and his family had gone to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina to spend a week.  It was their summer vacation, they were happy, excited to be going to the beach.  Tommy was especially excited to be going to play with his little three year old son, Taban... for the first time at the beach.

Tommy wasn't going to go with his family at first... 'something changed his mind at the last minute'... he became excited, happy about playing with Taban at the beach.  He was very animated while telling me, his mother, what they were going to do.  His eyes were shining, smiling... happy.  He was beautiful that evening.... 


I've seen that 'beautiful look' many times in the past... just 'before'...  As I write, you will see what I mean.  Also... there's a 'soft, velvety look' that I see sometimes, 'just before'.  This is for another time when writing...

They made it to their destination safely.  Shortly thereafter....Tommy and Taban disappeared... they slipped down to the beach without telling anyone.  I wonder 'if Tommy knew somehow'?

He did just what he wanted so much to do, so looking forward to do.  He ran, played, laughed, squealed with joy, playing with Taban.  He was sending photos to my home computer 200 miles away.  He was doing a video of Taban as his fingers slipped off the cellphone camera....

Taban was sitting on the sand watching the water come close to his feet.  I 'know' that was Tommy's last thing he saw... little Taban through the viewfinder.  Maybe he looked at him as he... collapsed to the sand... not knowing he was 'leaving.  He didn't have time to think, nor to feel pain.


As Tommy's mother, I 'feel deeply'... that Tommy 'knew, felt' something just before he decided out of the blue... to go on that vacation.  'Something' prompted him to go... no one has mentioned any kind of feelings, premonitions he might have had.  All I saw the evening before was 'pure happiness to be going to play with Taban'...... and the 'beautiful look'.

Tommy had a heart attack at age 40... the autopsy showed two complete blockages in his heart.  No one knew he was sick physically... he was experiencing emotional turmoil that disquised any symptoms he might have shown.

I write another blog ... ... you are welcomed to visit it to see photos of Tommy, of us.  You are welcomed to follow there, also. 

Below, you will see what I wrote about Tommy:

My Son, Tommy, has gone to Heaven now...

Below are photos of Tommy, my son. He walked into Heaven on May 29, 2010 from the sand at Myrtle Beach. He was doing something he'd been looking so forward to doing.... playing his first time at the beach with his little 3 year old son, Taban.
They were running, squealing with joy, laughing ...Tommy was sending me photos on his cellphone to my computer back home. His fingers slipped off the video ... he collapsed there on the sand.
The phone rung, the caller ID showed Tommy was calling! I answered it, my mind became confused as I realized it wasn't Tommy, but.. a strange man's voice saying.... 'I have a man lying here on the beach, he's not breathing'!
My life forever changed ... he was my only child whom I loved with my very heart. Tommy had 2 blockages in his heart... no one knew... he was only 40 years old.
I am keeping my son's memory alive, my memory alive for my grandchildren... Taban and McKenzie. I don't have family left who can do that for me. I sit and write my life's stories, my thoughts here ....everyday.
You will see a mother who has fought her way back from a very dark place to be here now. You will see a mother's real grief here and how she learns from all that's happened in her life.
I would like to grow older gracefully, not old...mean, bitter or angry. I love the light of the sunshine warming my heart and soul... not letting any dark places remain there.
I can 'see' now on my life's path... I want to live. The light on my path shows me exactly where to go... it used to be so cold, dark... I was a lost soul for almost 2 years.
You, my readers... friends... family mean the world to me. Each day I look forward to talking to you, you talking to me.
Love, Granny Gee / aka Gloria Faye Brown Bates :)))
I learned that while my son lay on the sand, he died... from a stranger who thought to pick up his cellphone and call the last number Tommy had called.  It was me, his mother, whom he called an hour before he died. 
That call was to say, "we only have seven miles to go, we made it here safely'.  I was so happy, so relieved.  I had worried for them in the Memorial Day holiday traffic. 
I 'knew everything was alright' .... they were there.  I took in a deep breath, and I silently thanked God that my son, his family had made it safely to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
When the stranger spoke to me, I was smiling, happy.  Tommy was calling just as he promised, he was playing with Taban on the beach and... he was going to tell me about it!
As the stranger spoke, I was smiling as I went into the 'world of darkness'... I was happy just as I entered the dark world of grief..... for almost two years. 
It's been two years, 4 months now... as of today September 26, 2012.  I may not have been here now, to write these words if it hadn't been for Skip, and our Pups... my life savers. 
Grief... I have known grief for the past twelve years intimately... grief, pain.  Everyone I've loved have... died during this time frame.  I lost so many 'family' members to death... in ways that bothered me.
We lost our home in a house fire, Skip was in two wrecks... one was a tractor trailer wreck in New Mexico, the second one was close to home.  So many scary things happened during this time frame. 
As time goes by... I will write these stories to hopefully be published one day... hopefully at least several books to give to my grandchildren, Taban and McKenzie... and several friends. 
I want Taban and McKenzie to one day know their Granny Gee (that's me!) through my words... to know their father, Tommy... to know Pa Skip.  I don't think there's anyone who will know enough to tell them about us.  Their mothers never got the chance to be close to us... we never really knew either mothers.
As time goes by, I'll tell the colors of Granny Gee's life in my words... my life stories.  I'll remember Tommy... Lena, my loved ones who have died. 
Love, Gloria Faye Brown Bates (aka Granny Gee, Colorful Granny) 
My systervan, Lena, in Sweden died... she meant the world to me... she died months after Tommy died.  Our Fairchild, eleven old Rottie, died three months after Tommy died.

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