Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A New Wave Of Grief ...

The loss of Joey is so profound and deep and heartwrenching, that it is almost unbearable at times. It helps so much that others know that and care. We don't know how we are ever going to resume "normal" lives again. We just long for his presence and yearn for one more day with him. Life feels empty without him. Whenever he walked into a room he brought happiness, humor, and love with him and gave it out generously. He was full of excitement for life and lived so much in the moment. He was engaged and involved and aware of each one of us and what we were feeling and doing. He was just such a rich and giving person and we feel so much poorer without him.

Being back here of course starts a new wave of grief, remembering everything we shared with Joey here. He loved Maui so much, and he loved our condo here looking out on the ocean. I have so many sweet memories of mornings here on the lanai, him drinking coffee and drinking in the beauty of the ocean. He couldn't stop talking about it. I know he was looking forward to inheriting the place someday! Our lives will reorganize, but they will never be the same again. I just pray that God will comfort us and that Joey is having an incredible experience exploring heaven right now....seeing things we can only imagine and speechless from the beauty around him.



kim insley morrell said...

Dear Karen & Joe,

It's at times like this that we can only imagine.... it is so hard to try and process how to go on, and what is normal life?

We look forward to coming to visit and just being with you.

Love in Christ!
Dave and Kim

lorensaved77 said...

Dearest Karen and Joe
I was so glad to hear you want your friends around you...people grieve so different, but I understand that the comfort and presense of friends are sweet to the soul in such a time as this...looking forward to our visit soon my friends.
Love& Blessings,
John,Nancy, Jonathon, and Michelle

dannylem said...

Joe and Karen,
Danny and I keep praying for you. We will be there at the end of this week and we will come by and see you! I am like you , the distraction of people helps me alot. From all that I have read I wished i could have known Joey. What a combination of the two of you he sounds like!
We love you and think of you daily,
Linda Lehmann

Michael said...

Dear Karen & Joe,

Thank you for sharing your heart with us, and we pray that your hearts are being held by your Maker, as we pray for you daily. Joey is "surrounded by His glory", and that is an amazing peace.
We love you,
Ciara, Michael and Mikaela

Gavin, Jamie and Kade said...

Dear Karen & Joe,
I look at Joey's blog every night before I go to bed and my heart breaks each and every time for the both of you and I know that I don't understand even just a little bit what you are feeling, but I want you to know you are surrounded by people that love you dearly and Jesus will carry you through this. It makes me smile when I think that Joey is in heaven with Lindsey, she always thought he was so cute!! Joey was so amazing!!! He has touched so many lives and my sister and I were laughing because that guy knew everyone and if he didn't know you he would be sure to meet you one day. I am so privilaged to have been one that knew him and I am so thankful for the memories I have of Joey at school, on mission trips and as a neighbor. We can only imagine what that day wil be like when we will all be together again. We love you so much and will be by to see you soon.

Jamie, Gavin and Kade

Trish Garcia said...

I love you both.

Trish Garcia

Elaine Williams said...

How very lucky he was to have you love him, and how very fortunate was his family to have him in their lives. May you be well. elaine

Anonymous said...

Dear Karen and Joe,
Early this week I had a little down time to look at Joey and Rachel's trip blog. HOW AMAZING! And how wonderful that they chose to document such an exceptional trip.
While we grieve with you, we can look back at those pictures and notes as a way of remebering the zest for life which made them.
What an uncommon son! What a blessing to so many! He made a difference in this world. That is a credit to you as his parents and to Joey as he made choices throughout his short life.
We know you will be embraced and supported by your Maui "family" and that the Lord will bless and keep you and give you peace.
Love, Chad and Lynne Andagan

Anonymous said...

Dearest Joe & Karen:

My being away from home right now is just agonizing for me. I missed celebrating Kit's homecoming and his first Friday service back, and now Joey's Memorial this Sunday.

Please know that I love you both dearly; although I'm thousands of miles away, you are close in my heart and prayers. My heart breaks as I read your blog... thank you for sharing Joey with us and making your home open to all.., even if it's just for a lovely cup of tea and soaking up the magnificent view from your lani. I look forward to sharig that with you soon, and hearing more wonderful stories about your family and Joey.

love you, Les

Anonymous said...

Dear Joe & Karen,

Last night I saw the most heartwarming picture. Joe was playing the song Joey had written and performed on CD. Izzy sat next to him playing Joey's ukulele to the song as Aiden layed on top of Joe gazing into his eyes with that electric smile only Aiden has. Joe coached Issy through the song.

It was innosence, love, joy, pride, devotion, caring; a true Johnson family moment. I think it was a glimpse into what it was like for Joey growing up in your family. You all have such a love and a closeness.

We miss Joey. He will forever be with us as we daily remember him. He will forever be in our hearts.

We are here for you and your family, to help you in anyway and everyway. You are our friends and we love you so much.

Toni & Jason Spence

Anonymous said...

Dear joe & karen,
We are so sad to hear about your loss and we are praying for you daily.We love you both so much and you 2 have brought so much joy and hope to our little family in the time that we have known you.We are both very happy to hear that you are wanting friends to stop by.We would love to stop by and show our love and pray with you.Words cannot express how much love we have for you joe and karen.So please call if there is anything we can do.We will see you soon. With much love and prayers,
Calvin,Michelle,Brandon and Tyler.

Anonymous said...

dear joe and karen
we send more love your way today and more prayers to the Father for peace and comfort and strength.

pete and i were just talking about fantasy football last year and how joey would change his team name every week to match with his opponents. just in that little way we saw his living life fully engaged. and wanting to make a trade with pete for tony romo, explaining to pete how it was to his advantage to take these 2 running backs and sending him pages of stats and profiles. and then when pete didn't do it, Joey taking it all in good humor and responding with what we are sure is Joey's classic affectionate wit.
we love you both so much
pete and carrie and girls

Anonymous said...

Dear Joe & Karen,
Thank you so much for allowing us into your home to share your grief and in some small way carry your burden of loss. I so wish we could do more. I could of been there for hours longer listening to all the amazing stories, videos & songs you have to share of Joey & the full life he lived. You have so much to be proud of in your son. You guys are so transparent, and you make it easy to be with you. Even when the tears come, or when there is silence. It was a priveledge to be with you.
I was just thinking of God's grace, how sufficient it really is. How it has the super natural strength to keep us going and get us through no matter what the circumstance. God's grace reminds us of our faith and keeps pointing us to God. Gods grace echos in our spirit that HE is with us and embraces us with the assurance that God is in control. I know God's grace is on the two of you. I pray for a flooding of it 24-7.

We love you,
Pierre & Cari

Anonymous said...

Dear Joe and Karen:

We went to Sierra's graduation at Wildwood tonight. It had such memories for me of Joey. One of the songs the 5th graders sang was "Somewhere over the rainbow" -all I could picture was your slideshow of Joey. The class president got up to speak and of course all I thought about was Joey's great year at Wildwood. His memory is here with us and we cherish and miss him so much.

Love - Viv