Words will never express my intimate deep heartache, my hope is that my actions have. This man (Mark Jeffrey Wandall) loved me with all of his being, every beautiful ounce of it. And my love to him and for him will grow and be nurtured for the rest of my life. To know that Madisyn (our daughter) is not privy to witness this love is another total heartache that stands on its own two feet yet most times is what brings me to my knees.
People are amazed at the work that is done in Mark’s name. It is not because I am pining away or sad or trying to hold on to something that will never physically “be” again. It is because of something called true authentic love that builds and impacts. The work has been guided by God, born out of understanding for my heart and with the help of many others. Love is not boastful. It has never been about what “I” have done – it has always been about all of the hands that have pitched in to affect others.
A lot of days I am tired, not in the physical since but in the deepest emotional sense. What helps with that “weak, tired” feeling is to give and share “our” love that is no longer physical.
When love is given, love grows.
When forgiveness is given, forgiveness grows.
When hope is shared, hope grows.
When faith is nurtured and shared, faith grows.
My “work” is love. It is love that has grown out of the deepest darkest heartache that could have sent me into a hole but rather has reached out to support, impact and nurture.
It is a love that says to my children and families in grief “I am going to be here, you have my word, we will grow at The Mark Wandall Foundation, we will make a “home” for us, we will “ASK” we will authentically impact “YOUR” lives so you can reach out and impact others.
It is a spark that ignites and a “flame” that can never be dimmed. The support will continue to grow, nurture and make bigger impact because LOVE never gets old and love never dies. Love is not a “word” it is an action.
It is love that says to a politician, who does not agree with stiffer penalties for road tragedies, “I have compassion for your misunderstanding “but I have promised my daughter and family, my community and nation, my fellow survivor advocates and children and families affected by road tragedy that I will utilize my voice to make impact and serve. It is Love that stands tall and says, We do have a problem on our National Roadways and we all deserve to be safe, “it is your responsibility along with my advocacy to make sure we drive down this insatiable heartache.”
It is Mark’s love that keeps me going even today. It is his love that voids out all of the negativity in this world. I never, for one second, wanted to be a single parent but “Free Will” took that choice away BUT it did not take love away and nothing ever can unless we throw it away.
I choose to not give love away but share it. By sharing Mark’s love it has led me to the most vulnerable place in my life, the most beautiful people I could ever come in contact with and has allowed me to cherish the gift given after his absence in our daughter Madisyn Grace. Before she was born her middle name was chosen for the “Grace of God.” Who knew the deep meaning that would be born out of this vital heartache that was forced on our family at 9 months pregnant. Love brought her to me and l choose to see that Love surrounds me daily, especially in my weakest moments.
On this day, July 4, 2017 I celebrate a love that will continue to serve, nurture and grow.
July 4th is so special to Mark and I! It was our first date (19 years ago). I choose to love him with all my heart and all of his and that love will see not only see me through but expand over time. Love will see you through, too! You just have to feel, believe and embrace every ounce of it, when you do Love GROWS up!