Makenzie: Five Times Now, Today.

32638547100I’m up earlier than normal again.  The last few weeks have stolen hours of sleep from me, most likely because of today.

Five times now, I’ve endured the turning of this calendar page without my oldest daughter Makenzie.  Five times now, this day has kept me from work, from happiness and from others.  Five times is five times too many.

39437192100I spend this day, like the four before, pondering.  Like Mary in the Bible, like many others of whom I now know, I think deeply on the meaning of tragedy that befalls us.  Like my fraternity of other parents who’ve lost their children, I pace through the same pictures and videos that fib and tell me she’s still here.  I want more.  I wonder what life would be like if Makenzie had not died in the car accident.  Would it be a good life with her?  Would she be safe?  What would she be doing?  How many lives would she touch?  Would she be in love, married? Would I be called “Pops” by her beautiful child?  I wander the halls of these questions today and I miss her.  Random pecks on my cheek.  Goofiness. Snorty laugh.  Graceful dance.  I miss all of it.

Five times now.  And I have to.

Yet even in the cloudiness of this day, God meets me.  He flips through the pictures with me.  He laughs when a shot reveals Makenzie’s goofiness and He tears when He feels the hurt I feel.  Even five times now, He does the same.  And my sorrow is His sorrow.  My hurt is His hurt.  He endures with me and promises good from bad.  Five times now, He has been faithful.

Makenzie on Easter Day!
Makenzie on Easter Day!

So today, I will spend most of it simply with God, talking about my ballerina and foolishly asking Him what she’s doing in heaven.  I will find a corner in a coffee shop nestled in an old river town and buy Makenzie an iced Frappuccino – she loved those.  It will be the 5th one I’ll end up throwing away, un-drunk.  And in my ache, God will meet me as the clock digits 8:08 tonight, the time of the accident.  And I will be grateful that Makenzie is alive and safe, waiting with God who loves her more than I possibly could.




19 thoughts on “Makenzie: Five Times Now, Today.

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  1. #26. DohknoaTms. That house is cute but its the first house on the right after John Ringo continues into Ringoes from Route 31N, just past the Route 202 overpass. Can’t believe it sold for that price. Must have been the $8000 credit.

  2. Todd & Kelly – You have reached out and blessed so many others who are experiencing the same pain and trauma that you know and truly understand. It’s been a terrible burden to bear, but a blessing of hope for so many others. Trusting God to continually touch you (& all) with His healing, loving care.

    With loving care and concern,
    Jeane Ambrose

  3. I am the mother of daughter’s whose lives Mackenzie touched. When they were ostrasized Mackenzie made an extra effort to sit , talk, and laugh with them. Include them with the greater group. I have wrestled with telling you the following but think this may be comforting -it is my hope in telling you. The paramedic that was the first responder said that when he came upon Mackenzie that she looked like she was sleeping peacefully. No signs of an accident on her beautiful self. Just like she had rested her head and gone to sleep. God’s peace

  4. Todd: Her death has effected me since I hear about it 5 years ago. I never met her but I feel her & your loss. I pray for her & your family often. I pass the site of the accident frequently and pray at the sight of her cross and flowers. You are a strong & faithful man. Both her death and your grief are very powerful in a positive way. I have become a more faithful person as I follow your journey. Peace to you and remember that in God’s time, you will be reunited with your beautiful daughter in an instant.

    Sent from my iPhone

    Anthony S. Melillo, MD


  5. Thank you for letting us sit at a nearby table in your hallowed place of thoughts and tributes to Makenzie. I am again moved by your sheer blessing to share your grief and God’s present work. We may be eaves dropping but, I want you to know that you are loved and supported in prayer by all of us you have invited in. And so I thank God for you and ask you will be given everything that you need and that you will be assured that your pain is not in vain. The hope we have with faith in a resurrected savior is simply amazing.

    Hugs and prayers.

    Iwill take the long way home tonight. Drive by the water. Drive by the site. And look at the sky, in honor of your daughter.

  6. Do you have your video of MacKenzie dancing to the beautiful song that you originally posted on your website? I think it was called, “I’ll Dance for You My King.” I loved that video and would like to watch it on her anniversary.

  7. May God continue to wrap you in his mercy and love as you miss your beautiful daughter and remember all that she brought to your life while she was here.
    Hugs to you and your family!

  8. I too share your thoughts, and my prayers are with you. My Tammy also was a beautiful dancer, and I know that they are both dancing before out Lord everyday! Nancy in SD

  9. Mackenzie has touched many. Two weeks ago, I was at Clear Lake High School’s Flair Spring show & a ballerina devoted her beautiful dance to “I Can Only Imagine” to Mackenzie. She said how Mackenzie had taught her to dance. I don’t remember the dancer’s name though. It was beautiful. Peace and prayers for you & your family.

  10. Pastor Todd, my heart aches reading this. I know I can’t say anything to take any of the pain away, but know that you are all in my thoughts and prayers today and always.

  11. God’s Peace to you, Todd. My heart is broken with yours. I pray that the love of Jesus continues to heal…Your Brother in Christ, Steve Maske

  12. Thank you for the reminders. It will be six years this August 21 when my brother met Jesus face-to-face suddenly at the age of 49. There are no words to describe the emptiness and the questions of “what might have been.”
    I know of Heaven, and have confidence in God’s promise to never leave us, nor forsake us, but there are days, like this one, that sadness almost overwhelms and darkens out the light.
    When doubt and fear, the sense of longing and loneliness bring us down, the struggle feels hard to overcome.
    I pray that Heavenly Father would wrap His huge, powerful, soft and loving arms around us and hold us close, so we can cry and sob and sniffle and shiver and shake and mourn our loss. Then we will feel His warm and caring love envelop and surround our pain with southing relief.
    Jesus never fails.

  13. Todd
    You’re a great father, inspiring and challenging. I respect and love you my friend, will be lifting you up before Christ in prayer, that His Spirit would strengthen and guide you.

  14. Thank you for sharing this modern day version of an old pillar of words that I have leaned upon often, Footprints In The Sand. Shall I happen upon you nestled in the quiet corner of a coffee shop today, I shall smile your way in honor of reading these words. May our Father’s arms of His peace and understanding hold you and yours with his love today, and all of the days still to come.

  15. Peace and prayers for you and your family today.
    May you continue to find strength in the sweet memories of her and the promise of your reunion in heaven. God bless you.

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