Robert and I went to Seattle last Friday, and we recently came back the following Monday. On Friday we flew to Portland, picked up my Grandma then rented a car and drove to Seattle. Later that night my brothers Ryan and Dave flew in and stayed at the same hotel as we did. The next day (Saturday) was River's memorial. Her friends were arriving, some people from the LDS Sultan Ward were helping my mother and I set up River's artwork, pictures, the guestbook, and a few of River's personal items. Many people sent flowers and cards. Her memorial was held at the Sultan Ward meetinghouse. The bishop was conducting it. Many family members were there, but not all of her family which was sad to me. Ryan gave the Opening prayer. Richard(River's father and my other brother) spoke about River's personality, and shared some of his personal feelings. Then I spoke on what River valued in life, which was love and family. I also shared some of my personal thoughts and memories of River. A nice man from the ward sang a beautiful song, Richard's home teacher shared some words, and then the bishop closed the service with some doctrine, which was meaningful. Then we sang Nearer my God to Thee, this made me breakdown. I cried so hard, more than I have in awhile. I was hurting, I was sad, I missed my bubbly outgoing River. I realized that the next time I was going to Seattle to visit with family, she would not be there. That hurt. She was always there, and always spending time with me. That wasn't going to happen anymore. A part of my happiness was taken away. Dad gave the closing prayer that brought a lot of people to tears. Robert had to hold me. I don't know what I would have done if he weren't there. After the service, many of River's friends greeted me and hugged me. They were so young, I felt their pain. I wanted to give them peace, and yet they wanted to give me peace as well.
The night before her memorial I had a dream. I don't usually dream because I take meds for insomnia. But I had a dream that I was speaking to another niece of mine about River, and how much we missed her and sharing our memories of her. Just as my other niece left the room River came to me and hugged me so tight it felt real. She told me she loved me and then left. This was the comfort I had been praying for. Heavenly Father answered me in a way that I would understand. I still hurt and I still cry, but I know that River loves me, and I need that assurance.
I hope no one has to go through this type of ordeal. Just imagine that it was your child who took their own life because they were not happy with you as a parent. That would break anybodies heart. It broke mine, to see my brother and sister-in-law go through this. They hurt.
Remember, the choices you make affect the life you give to your children. I feel like all my nieces and nephews on my side are suffering because of their parents wrong choices. As a parent you have a responsibility to raise your child correctly. Heavenly Father has entrusted you with his children, and it is your duty to bring them up the way Heavenly Father has commanded of us.