George Charles Garman 09/09/09 to 01/29/10

January 29, 2010 our world was turned upside down when our 4 month old little boy earned his wings after a battle with Mitochondrial Disease and awoke in the Lords loving arms.

"Life can not be measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away."

George's Guardian's of Grace Projects

Stocking project is now in full force collecting donations. We have a list of the items we can use. You can also choose to sponsor a stocking in memory or honor of someone else. We will include a paragraph or two in the cards we place in the stockings to let the recipient know about the person that means so much to you. Our paypal account is posted on this page and ready to take donations. Email us for a list of items needed or with any questions or information you would like included on a sponsored stocking/donation.

Saturday, September 4, 2010


I really sat down and thought about the post yesterday. Much of what I wrote could be taken in the wrong way and I find sometimes people do take things personally rather than at face value. In no means was it a pointing of fingers or gross disrespect for people who we know care but maybe just don't understand where we are in our lives right now. I did want to add to that post by adding in my thoughts for today.

I've done much soul searching since George passed and this sort of soul searching is not something any of us happen to do alone. I truly believe God has been walking this path with both Hugh and I. We both know he has a greater plan than we will ever understand. I've always said I have always been content with all that has transpired dispite my gross lack of understanding for it all and have known this is just where we need to be in our lives. Often times many people are called by God to do things but due to our own human nature resist the whole way because it doesn't seem right to us or we may have selfish reasons or just hate change in general because we don't understand. That is where your faith really comes need to be willing to walk blindly and giving him the ability to guide you...a task that is extremely difficult for most of us.

Where does this all fall into with the post yesterday about relationships? Well, I believe he has now given Hugh and I the personal and couple based strength to move forward. Often times we have not listened to where he was calling us out of fear or due to the fact we feel some insane obligation to keep giving to these sorts of things and that takes time and energy from where he wants us to be. I've been reading all sorts of books on faith and I am currently reading one on relationships and how to have a healthy productive one. In it there is a passage that just struck home to me...I of course don't know it by heart but can give you the general idea. It basically depicts God as a gardener and we are his plants. As a gardener cuts away the dead parts and prunes back the fruitful parts, god does the same with us. it is such a great picture and actually is very deep.

If you leave the dead parts they will ruin the plants, just as dead relationships can truly hurt us as individuals should they be left in our lives. If you know anything about pruning there is a distinct need for them with a plant or the plant will go wild and actually not be as fruitful or could even cause damage to itself. The longer you let that stray piece go, the more work the plant has to do in order to make it fruitful. I believe these are the relationships that change when tragedy happens.

Often times my mother has said that she wants me back. That truly is just not possible, I am a different person for life. Different however does not mean it is a bad thing. Much like a plant that just had all it's shoots pruned, it takes time to get comfortable with this new structure and person that we are becoming. Sometimes those individual relationships need to be changed to reshape who you are going to become. That does not mean that they will not grow in a different manner or one more plentiful to the whole plant, it just means that it will be different and have a different purpose. Those shoots who resist after time for adjustments eventually become the dead ones that need to be cut away.

Think about a garden and truly how it works in harmony to create a beautiful all around. Without removal of weeds the plants would be over run, sometimes things need to be transplanted. Sometimes plants are moved to another location all together for another need or purpose(I believe this is much like those who pass on and go to heaven vs remain with us...especially children taken to soon or born into heaven...they bloom in heaven) There is much to be said for this and how this one particular passage has so much meaning. It isn't that we are saying to hell with everyone else, I think it is more that we are moving forward and realize what parts of our lives/relationships are over or just taking their time to become fruitful again.

We cannot rush these things and sometimes there is a lot of work that needs to be done just like a plant should the elements of life have beaten down on them like a heavy rain with extreme wind. If your roots are deep though you will stay grounded but it doesn't mean you will go unharmed. You will need much tending to and help to be able to be that person God want's and sometimes I believe it is his personal attention that is needed and you just have to rely on him at times and right I think that is where we are. We are trusting in him to bring us both back and to heal the damage from a very bad storm. As hard as it is to think to leave some relationships behind, I think it is imperative to our survival on so many levels, they were just meant to be there for a shorter period of time than we thought. Just as with anything else it weighs heavy on you and has it's own type of grief that transcends as these things happen.

As I talk about faith,I cannot go without mentioning God's unending love and grace. Hugh and I have been through so much in our lives, not to mention the past few years being extremely difficult as we mourned the loss of our dreams for ourselves and our family. Somewhere in there though we both knew that we were called for greater plans than what we ever had for ourselves. All we ever wanted in life was to have a family and raise them. Never did we have aspirations to be a mover and a shaker or to change the world. Somehow and somewhere in it all, God acknowledged our faith and called us to do much more with our lives. Never would we have chosen this path nor would we be here surviving such trials, it is only with his grace and love that we stand stronger than ever before.

I often think back on all that has transpired and can see exactly how things have lead into another to get us where we are. Two years ago when Hugh lost his job it was hard but somehow we just were not devastated by it all. My faith had changed at that point because of all that had transpired with Joshua and learning that I have no control over things so all I can do is put it in God's hands and wait for his direction. I have come to know in a great way that God provides. We may not have what we want but we have what we need.

The day that I held George in my arms almost a year ago, I knew he would leave us. Anyone who does not believe this can ask my sister Tara whom I had a conversation with only weeks before George died. To this day I know she is in awe with the fact that I knew that and had shared it with her such a short time before he passed. Somewhere in all of this, I learned that those "gut instincts" are God calling and talking to you. Sometimes it is in whispers and you have to truly learn to listen and trust. Even George dying, I knew there was more to it than I will ever know. I don't profess to understand any of it but I will place it in his hands and wait for his guidance as I walk blindly in faith through the dark. I could elaborate more but I would probably have the longest blog in history and truly what you to think of how this may apply to your life.

Think about your own life and roads you have traveled. Can you see the lines connecting the dots? Ever look at a connect the dot picture with tons of numbers to it? Did you sit there and look to see if you could tell what the picture is but not be able to so you have to actually work the puzzle itself? I believe that is sort of what life is. I hope this clarifies things a little and helps you to take a look at your own relationships that you have lost or that are changing and be ok with it rather than sad that things are different or are no longer there. Faith is what it is all about and it is such a powerful thing when used correctly.

Friday, September 3, 2010


Much of this grief journey has come with much soul searching and eye opening on so many levels. In some ways it was not only like loosing our son but also like loosing the life as we knew it for we could no longer walk around with blinders on and just find ourselves short with what we can actually give of ourselves. The giving part is hard for both Hugh and I because both of us have always been the giving ones in many relationships we carried, just to make them work and a hope for some sort of acceptance in our lives.

Tuesday at Hugh's counseling session his counselor told him that oddly enough the two of us are very similar but just handle it differently. This has been running through my mind ever since she has said that and I have to agree with her. Both of us are the ones who sacrifice ourselves to make relationships with others work just so that we find some sort of acceptance. I was always the understanding one in my family who would do whatever was needed to make a situation work when others would just walk away or get frustrated. Often times I found myself the mediator or the one who would understnad dispite if I was hurt or not.

Where frienships were concerned, if I did not keep them going they ended. To be honest I have never had a true best friend in my life dispite the fact that I always thought I did in my own mind. A good part of me is jealous of those who have those sorts of relationships I have struggled my whole life to just find. In all of my travels through this process, I have become closer with my younger sister and found one friend in a very odd place. My ex husbands ex girlfriend has become a true friend to me and even though she has many medical issues she has always made the effort to email and has actually taken me out to lunch once or twice. Also, my one aunt and cousin have really taken initiatives on their own to try and help without us having to ask for it by making a meal or stopping by with balloons or something, a gift that is truly priceless since this is what we truly need.

Hugh was always the go between both sides of the family, sort of the odd man out/middle man seeking approval and love from both sides. He would invite himself to things or his siblings homes just looking for their love and acceptance in some way even if he had to force the relationship. Each set of siblings had one another and on many occasions his mother forced him to feel as if it was his responsibility to keep the family together. On numerous occasions she has told me this too. With his father dying things have been even harder for him as there seems to be even more of a dividing line. His father was no saint and not a good man and he knows that but he was his only father and still grieves that loss when it seems as if others are happy he is gone, which leaves mixed feelings.

He does however have a few friends that have been there for him since both passed and I am so grateful for that. They have called and asked him to come over or stopped by just to see how he was, and now call him on a more regular basis than before. I remember the day after George died, waking up in our house together alone, knowing the day that was ahead of us was going to be long. I thought of him and how my family was there and would stop by but knew he would not have anyone just for himself. While he was in the shower I got on the phone and started to call people grasping at straws asking them to come be there for him that day. It was such a horrible feeling to have to do that for him. When we went to the funeral home to see our son for the very last time, my two sisters went with me and we had to actually ask a friend from the chorus that we met in to go with Hugh to be there for him since he was at my mother's house at the time. My heart broke for my husband that day knowing how very alone he felt but there being nothing I could do to make it better. Yesterday I started a photo montage and realized I don't have any with George and Hugh's was very hard for the two of us to realize that as we searched through the hundreds of pictures I took of George.

I think in some regards that the reason we have gotten closer through all of this is because all we have is one another on many levels. In all of this we have acknowledged that most of the relationships that we hold are not easy to keep and often times we have to put in so much effort to make them work, they tend to be one sided. It is not that the people don't care for us, we know many people are there and think of us often but to be honest we can say there are very few who would go out of their way to drop it all and be there without us having to ask for it. Often times we don't know or even realize we need someone in our lives. Much of these realizations have made us finally realize it is not our responsibility anymore to forge these relationships. We are not going to force relationships with others that will require more than we have to give anymore and we are not going to feel guilty for it or feel as if it is our responsibility. People know where we live, what our phone number is, and what our email address happens to be.

We will be here for one another and our children and devoting ourselves to that rather than the hope of acceptance of others. This will be a hard task for us both since we are so used to living our lives in a manner quite opposite of that. I am of course more vocal about how I feel when push comes to shove. Hugh on the other hand tries to accept it but the pain in his eyes is so very apparent even when he is at his braking point. It is not that we won't keep these relationships, I think we have just realized we cannot hope for them to be more than they really are because it is unfair to us and of us. We will never be the people with tons of people around them, we will be those in the shadows holding on to one another and our faith to get through this and life in general. Our little boy taught us many things while he was here and still now that he is gone. Even though some of these lessons are hard, they are what we need.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Our Sign

Missing you so much right now my little man...wish I was holding you tonight!

Changing the World

Well dispite all the pain I carry in my heart every day, I realize how much you are changing the world even when you aren't here. You have touched so many lives and continue to do so. Today we dropped your clothes off at the church. I cannot tell you how hard it was to go through your things especially those that still had tags on them knowing you never wore them. I just cannot keep them in a plastic bag when there are so many people they can help. Yes it is hard for me to give away things that remind me of you but I know you are living on through these things. They will travel across the continents to Ecuador where some child of an earthquake will find warmth and love in them.

As daddy and I went to put the bags in the car we saw a butterfly on the door. It was the most beautiful one I have seen in a long time. It was black with blue spots on its wings. It was then that I knew we were doing the right thing and our sign from God that you are part of his greater plan in this world. We never get butterflies up at the house because they love the plants in the backyard. This one just lingered as daddy and I fumbled to get the camera and take a picture of it. Although I am not one for signs, this was just undeniably a sing and the very thought of it brings tears to my eyes.

We also got a call today from a woman at the newspaper. She is going to come out on Thursday with a photographer to take pictures and interview us. We have been very blessed to keep in touch with one of the police officers who came to our house the day you left us. He has been a great help by giving me contacts of his. I've written to many of them and received a warm response since your story touches their hearts. The unconditional and never ending love that our family has is apparent to them through my emails and the fact that your brothers love you so much they want to keep your memory alive.

Whenever I wonder why you are gone, I think of all that has come from loosing you. I still want you back but realistically know I can't have you back. If that is the case then knowing something good has come of all this horrible pain and heartache that I will have to forever live with, than I know there was a purpose to it all at the very least. That doesn't make it better at all and I hate when people tell me things like that because I would rather have you here but it isn't possible so I know I have to make the best of it.

Your brothers are quite excited and are buzzing around the house. Josh has plans to clean tomorrow and took out his clip on tie! Richard if course is that proud big brother of yours who carries his pain under his tough exterior but has such an awesome perspective on life. For Michael, life is simple...he misses you...but I think he is more worried to make sure you have lots of balloons and cake for your party! We all love you so much and I wish I was holding you and planning your birthday party rather than trying to find a way to honor and keep your memory alive. I would give anything for you to be here. Despite it all, I do know that together we are all changing the world one baby step at a time and doing what God has planned for us even though it is much bigger than anything I ever thought or planned for our family. You still amaze me with how you are still changing the world!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Another Child in Heaven

Today I found out that an old friend of mine lost her son about a month ago. Despite our falling out after George died, my heart still breaks for her. I remember seeing him in the NICU at the hospital when he was first born. I remember throwing her a mini baby shower in her hospital room the day after the twins were born. The boys were preemies and so tiny...I had never been around a baby that little in my life and watched her handle them like a pro where I was afraid they would break! Back then I had considered us best friends although I don't know if she saw things that way. Much to my dismay much of what I thought about our friendship was really not the case when I got an email shortly after George died from her.

She lost her son Ryan a while back and then had the twin boys after he passed away. Chase was adorable but definitely had problems from the very beginning. Even though we went our own ways I always prayed for them because I did not want her or her family to ever have to suffer that loss ever again. Unfortunately, that was not the case. I don't know any details since I stopped checking her page a while back and had stopped being friends on Facebook and the other connections that we had.

For me I was in the very beginning of my grief and thought that if anyone would understand it was her. Much to my dismay she told me that I did not know for sure that George had Mitochondrial Disease and that me saying so demeaned her boys fight with the disease. That was when I realized that I was alone...truly alone. It was bad enough I had docs from the beginning saying there was nothing wrong with him until after he was dead and then they all changed their tunes. Of course I definitely took it very hard and just needed to distance myself from her and the pain that I felt after feeling as if I had just been betrayed because the pain from the loss of my son was far greater than I could carry, to have that added just made things even worse. I really thought that even after that she would have shown up to his funeral and she didn't so from then on I had just decided that our friendship was over.

I don't really think that there was any wrong or right in the entire situation to be honest. I know for me, I definitely took things to heart and was acting more out of pain and grief for the loss of my son and the loss of a relationship I thought I had. For her, I am sure she watched her children suffer through this terrible disease every single day. Our experiences with Mitochondrial Disease have just been so very different and I know on many occasions that people thought I was over protective of the boys and felt as if I was causing my own drama. In fact I was just trying to get a doctor to take me serious. After Ken closed his practice, I was on my own and felt so very incompetent to handle the boys care...I was not like this friend of mine, she just knew so much more than I did due to the extent that her boys were affected. Because my boys were not as sick I faced a very different set of challenges and still do to this day with the kids.

Today I sent her an email saying how my heart went out to her and that I had just learned of her little boy's return to heaven. I don't know if I ever will hear from her but my heart breaks for her thinking of how she has had to endure this twice. Even though our relationship was not what I thought it was I would still be here for her even though I know she has made friends with another child's mother who definitely had more in common with her. Grief is such an odd and unpredictable thing. I sat there thinking of how I wish we didn't have to ever go through these sorts of things but how they change our perception on life. I don't know if we will ever be friends again but I still feel for her in a very deep way, more than I would for a stranger. Please pray for their family and their little boy who is now in heaven with George.

yesterday Hugh and I went to church together for the first time in a long time. My mom watched the little boys. I think I just needed to get out and away from all the drama and things that I have felt so very overwhelmed by. We of course mentioned the fundraiser for Comfort Zone we are doing. I am glad that the boys are so excited and had such a wonderful idea...the only draw back is that there is just so much to do and with me being the only one really working to organize it along with George's birthday coming up I am just so very overwhelmed at times. I will be glad that we did it but also be glad for it to be done too. I was very touched yesterday when a little girl came up to me and asked if she could do a puppet show for the event!!! It just meant so much to me. We are getting more things added every day and I am excited for that. I do have to order a birthday cake for George still...think I want to get something special...going to have to call around to a few places.

Please also keep Hugh in your prayers. He did finally get a call back from that interview where he went a week or two ago. The gentleman said he had two more interviews to do this week but would let him know by Thursday. I think he has many mixed emotions about it and I surely can't blame it. We figure it is worth a shot for him to try and see if it works. I know he can do well with it all, I just hope that he gets the job. Whatever God wants will happen, we have learned that the hard way and have just learned to put things there and leave them. Thank you all in advance for your prayers for the family and Hugh.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

7 months since you awoke in God's arms

The Cord

Author Unknown

We are connected,

My child and I,

By an invisible cord,

...Not seen by the eye.

It's not like the cord

That connects us 'til birth

This cord can't be seen

By any on earth.

This cord does its work

Right from the start.

It binds us together

Attached to my heart.

I know that it's there

Though no one can see

The invisible cord

From my child to me.

The strength of this cord

Man could create

It withstands the test

Can hold any weight.

And though you are gone,

Though you're not here with me,

The cord is still there

But no one can see.

It pulls at my heart

I am bruised…. I am sore,

But this cord is my lifeline

As never before.

I am thankful that God

Connects us this way

A mother and child

Death can't take away!

This was posted by another mom!

I miss you my sweet little monkey in heaven and await the day we are together again!

RIP George!

Video Tributes/Celebration of Life Footage

Here is a link to a video tribute that was made by Richard's dad in memory of George. Get out your tissues!!/video/video.php?v=1360981185308&ref=mf

We Finally have footage from the service up and running:!/video/video.php?v=1368692138077&ref=mf!/video/video.php?v=1368733099101!/video/video.php?v=1368770540037

It is in 4 sections running about 17 mins each. If you were unable to attend, you can now see what you missed. We were so blessed to have everyone there with us in person and in spirit!

Me With My Prince Charming In Front of the Castle

Me With My Prince Charming In Front of the Castle