Thursday, January 3, 2013

letters from my brother

Today I received a huge blessing in the mail, letters from my brother Darren, yes the one that is in heaven....

Back up a few weeks ago (december 11th to be exact)

I was contacted by an old friend who wrote me the most encouraging note about my brother Darren, the most encouraging note I have ever read.  In the note she told me about how her and Darren had been pen pals while he was sick and dying.  She was in Southern California (where we use to live, Rosamond) and he was in Northern.  They had never met, but knew mutual friends.  They exchanged numerious letters throughout his illness and shortly before he died she came up to Paradise to meet him.

Here is some of what she wrote
"we became pen pal's and i LOVED it so much. i do believe i only received one (out of about 15) that was hand-written by darren before he had to have someone do the writing for him. we became great friends. i treasured the moments i went to check the mail and had a reply from Darren. i use to write about anything---my day; my dreams; scriptures i was reading at the time---anything that i felt would make him smile. i would often imagine him lying in his bed in your home at the time, reading, or hearing someone else read it to him, my silly, fun letters. he impacted my life greatly and i always hoped that in some small way, i touched his too. i sent him flowers on valentine's day to brighten his day. not long after that, your mum wrote to me and i asked if i could come and visit darren, to meet him in person, as she said she fellt he didn't have long left. i immediately requested time of work....
the letters from Darren i treasure to this day and occasionally get out my bundle of letters and sit down for a read and a big cry. but meeting your brother that weekend is one of those stand out moments from my life that changed me, and impacted me forever more."

I asked her if there was anyway I could see the letters, she lives pretty far away now, but thought maybe she could send me copies.  What a treasure it would be to read my brothers notes, his thoughts as a 20 year old, dying, but full of life.  What a treasure to just remember him through his words.  She responded by not just sending me copies, but the actual letters!!!!  I got them today and my heart is full and blessed!

I have only read 2 of the letters, and many tears and much laughter was shed.  I can't wait to share some of what he said.  I want those of you who read my blog  to have a better understanding of how much my brother impacted my life, how he truly changed me and so many others around him.

I know sometimes this blog can be sad and dreary, but this is my life and much of it has been sad.  But maybe, just maybe it can encourage someone who is going through sometime hard.DSC_0561


  1. Jenni,
    How special to receive these letters, they are more valuable than a gold mine.
    I use Darren's life and story in one of my classes at Simpson University.
    I look forward to hearing some of what Darren wrote.

    1. Phil, what a treat to hear from you. And they are a gold mine. I forgot that he was just a teenager when he was so sick and reading them has reminded of that

  2. Wow. I cannot wait to hear more about your brother! Tears in my eyes right now. <3

  3. I'm anxious for you to share more about Darren. How special to have these! I appreciate your honesty about the sadness in your life, Jenni. It is important for us to grieve with you and pray for you, not just rejoice with you in good times. - Laura C

  4. oh jenni. i am SO glad they got to you safely---my heart has been slightly anxious while i knew they were somewhere over the sea's, making their way to you. i knew you needed to see them. and i knew i never wanted to loose them. and now, am so glad they are with you.
    please make copies of everything. for your mother as well.
    he was/is such an incredible being.
    and so are you jenni.

  5. Such a wonderful gift! So amazing how God works and his timing!

  6. What a special gift, Jenni. I can only imagine the joy it must bring you to get a piece of your brother, thru the letters. Thanks for always being "real" on your blog. I hope you know how much your testimony and transparency inspires others. It really, really does.


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