I Have Cried A Million Tears But I Will Not Drown
 By Finally There   •   31st Mar 2011   •   10,618 views   •   45 comments
Life isn't easy. No one ever said it would be, it never was, never will be. We all go through struggles, some worse then others. We all have a story to tell of of a lost loved one, our own story is always the worst. Sometimes we want to go back in time and change everything. We need to learn to accept life how it is. It might take a while, it did with me. Life is too short to waste on wallowing in self pity. We need to get up and move, make our mark, do something that makes a difference. I lost many people in my life, my mother when I was just 11, recently my Aunt, three of my grandparents, and my best friend Josh.

I Have Cried A Million Tears But I Will Not Drown

This is our story

Josh and I were born two years apart. We were inseparable. We were called the dare devil twins. Always getting into trouble. I remember one summer when I was seven and Josh and I let all the sheep out of the pen at his house. We got in trouble big time, but over time all was forgiven.

Josh had curly, unruly, little boy hair since he was a baby. He had deep brown eyes, that were always laughing, or smiling. Always soft and gentle, always kind and loving, understanding. He was 6'2" and I was 4'10". I was always looking up to him, metaphorically speaking and technically speaking. He was my hero growing up.

Josh was diagnosed with a disease called "Cystic Fibrosis" which is a disease that often ends in young deaths. It is a disease that affects the lungs by mucus build up, eventually causing the inability to breathe.

Last August there was news that Josh and his family were moving to Florida. Somewhere less dusty and where the temperature changes weren't as extreme. It broke my heart to see him leave. I remember when he came over to break the news of him leaving. I was in the barn with the horses while my music blared in the background. I could tell something was wrong just by the way he walked. I knew they told him he didn't have much time to live, thinking he had even less I held my breath waiting for the news that he was close to death. Right before he opened his mouth to speak Taylor Swift's song "Breathe" came on the radio.

It was our song.

He looked down at me with tearful eyes (he never cried) "Gracie." He said holding back tears. "We're moving, moving to Florida."

My heart broke. I couldn't breathe and it seemed like my whole world was coming down in flames before me, and what did I do? I broke down, as angry as I had ever been since my mother died, and I screamed at him. Anger and fear filled me, I backed away and balled my hands into fists, shaking and with a small trembling voice, I said, "Fine, get out, I don't care!" Then he cried.

I wasn't angry at him, I was just angry about the situation. So much had been going on that I just didn't understand why this was happening. "Go!" I screamed at him at the top of my lungs. He backed away slowly as tears fell down his face. I stood there alone, watching him walk away as tears fell down my face. He had a mere three months to live, and he would live them far away from me, all the way across the country. I just stood there, seeing his face in my mind as he walked away.

Two Days later we were supposed to help Josh and his family pack. I was still angry and couldn't face him because of my behavior. I faked sickness and stayed home. Something I wish I hadn't done. My brother came home and told me they were leaving in the morning. Holding back tears I mounted Kanji and rode out onto the trail that connected our house and Josh's. I sat there looking through the trees at the little red house as they loaded up the moving trucks. I promised myself I would never cry again. After a few minutes I turned around and went back home. The next day I woke up feeling like a piece of me was missing. A piece I needed. I glanced at the clock, their flight was at 8:45 AM. It was 8:15. I jumped out of bed. They already would be on the way to the airport if not there already. Thankfully, we lived only about 10 minutes from it. I threw on my boots ran out the door.

I arrived at the airport and looked around frantically. I needed to see him one more time before they left. "Josh!" I screamed. Suddenly all eyes were on me. Two people moved out of the way when he pushed between them. We stood there staring at each other for several moments before I ran towards him. He scooped me up into his strong arms and spun me around before holding me closely.

"I love you Joshua Andrew Hudson." I whispered as tears ran down my face. "I love you Danika-Grace Angeleene." He replied burying his face in my long blond unruly curls. "Just breathe for me okay?" I asked him softly trying to control my sobs. "Only for you Gracie, only for you." He replied.

His flight was announced and he put me down reluctantly. I stared into his deep brown eyes for the last time and he leaned down and kissed the top of my head gently. "Live for me my dear." He said softly before turning away. I stood there and watched him walk away for the last time. The very last time.

August and September 2010 seemed to lag on as we wrote back and forth, called each other and emailed often. We talked everyday. We had a certain time set that we were to call each other. His condition was getting much worse, to the point that they were going to have to put him on the ventilator. Then we no longer could have our talks. That was in the beginning of November. He still emailed me, but was sleeping most of the time. My dad flew down to Florida on business and visited the family. Dad came home on November 17th. I could tell something was wrong. I figured Josh had barely any time left to live.

"Can I fly to see Josh?" I asked him one night at dinner. Him and Ty exchanged glances and my eyes narrowed. "We're all flying down tomorrow morning." He told me gently. "Oh good!" I exclaimed. Then I saw the looks on their faces, they didn't look excited. "Honey, Josh died yesterday."

He was gone.

I was in complete shock. I couldn't even speak. "No!" I finally screamed after I caught my breath. "You're lying!" I jumped up from the table and ran out the front door. The November air chilled me to the bone, but I didn't care. I ran through the layer of fresh snow in my socks, not feeling a thing. It was like all my emotions had completely drained out of me. I reached the barn and through the doors open, before collapsing in the doorway. Falling onto my knees I curled up into a tiny shaking ball and sobbed. Reality hit me, that was the last time I would ever look into his soft brown eyes, the last time I would ever have felt his arms curl around me in a loving tender way. The way I loved the most.

The day of the funeral came and I was trying to not look as depressed as I really was. Now something bigger was missing from inside me. Something I needed, I wanted, I begged for. I put on a good face like Josh would have wanted me to do. They were having a viewing which I dreaded, but I had to be there and stand by his casket, as he wished me to do. Building up my strength I walked with my brother Ty to the room he was in. Stopping dead in my tracks, my breath hitched and I turned to go back, but something pulled me back towards the room. I clutched Ty's hand firmly and we walked through the door. There he was, laying still, as handsome as he ever was before. But lifeless. I felt like someone was crushing me, like they were tearing me apart and tormenting me. He was wearing his favorite shirt, the one that I had given him for his birthday the year before. I stepped closer and let go of Ty's hand when he stepped back. I couldn't keep the tears from spilling out of my eyes when I looked down at his pale face.

"Please no..." I whimpered reaching down and holding his cold hand. I ran my fingers through his unruly curls and laid my head on his chest as if to prove to myself that his heart wasn't beating. That heart that moved in tune with mine was no longer sounding. Sobbing uncontrollably I closed my eyes thinking about all the wonderful times we had together. Standing back up straight I made a silent promise to him that I would never love again. I stepped away, but left a piece of my heart with him that he had always had. Letting go of his cold hand I closed my eyes for a moment and turned around to see my brother with tears falling down his face. He never cried, he wasn't crying because he was sad that Josh died, he was crying because I was destroyed. I wiped my eyes, took a deep breath and turned standing right by Josh's side, by his casket. I stood there the whole time during the viewing, never once crying again. I looked down at the little promise ring I had on my ring finger. The engravment on it said, "My saving Grace." (Josh called me Gracie). It was his promise to love me no matter what, and no matter how far apart we were. I knew even though we were the furthest apart we'd ever be, he'd always be as close me as he could ever be, right in my heart.

Josh's mother gave me most of his things. His journal with all his writings and this little envelope that had something metal in it I could feel. I opened it while I was alone and pulled out a little metal heart engraved, "Joshua Andrew's heart, kept by Danika-Grace Angeleene." I held it close to my own heart and then held onto it with a firm grip as I pulled out a piece of paper.

"Breathe for me." It simply said.

I put the paper into my pocket and put the little heart around my neck. When I walked over to the casket one more time to say goodbye I took his hand in mine and pressed a little key and locket into it. My heart, and the key to it. Kissing his forehead softly, I stepped back. But before I left something caught my eye, a little folded up paper with my name on it tucked in the pocket of his shirt. Curiously I tugged it out and unfolded it, "Just Live" it read. He was known for his simple words making all the difference in some one's life. I put the paper in my pocket and stepped back slowly. When they closed the casket and carried it out to bury it took my heart with them. Josh took my heart with him.

Reading through Josh's journal's and poems I read many things that I knew were directed towards me. He was a beautiful writer. He was a beautiful man, with a beautiful heart. Josh taught me many things, he taught me never to give up. He didn't give up, with his last breaths he wrote down those simple words.

Joshua Andrew passed on November 16th 2010 at the young age of 19 years. His heart was used in a heart transplant, for a young girl who desperately needed one. His liver was used in a liver transplant for an older teen who was in desperate need of a liver, Josh saved two people's lives and with the simple words he said to me, he saves mine every day.
Horse News More In This Category:  General      Horse News More From This Author:  Finally There
Painted Destiny  
Even though I've read this two or three times, it's still inspiring and sad. Hope you're doing better Danika!
  10 days ago  •  5,175 views
Oh, Dani, I'm so glad they made this into an article!! *hugs* He'll always be with you no matter what!
  10 days ago  •  4,305 views
Oh gosh, way to make me cry. This is the most precious story!
  10 days ago  •  5,173 views
:) So sorry you had to go through all this, Narrow. Hope you're feeling better.
  10 days ago  •  4,366 views
You are a very strong person my dear.
  10 days ago  •  4,327 views
I was crying through the whole story, to tell you the truth i have no IDEA how you feel. Yes i have also lost many people in my life but this is heart breaking, please feel better.
  10 days ago  •  4,313 views
Flying Change  
This story is so sad I mean when I was reading it, it made my eyes water
  10 days ago  •  4,326 views
T W I  
I was very close to crying while reading this heart rending story.
I'm so sorry!
  10 days ago  •  4,376 views
My brother loved you very much Danika. Very very much. I'm glad this got posted even though it's not horse related. And now I look back and I wish I had been there for you through those months that you had to go on alone. He loved you more than the world will ever know, love. Just keep on going, like he told you to. Just live. Don't give up because he will be disappointed in you and you don't want that do you? If you live for him he will live on through you my dear. I think you will recognize this little bit of something he wrote to you:
"My dear Gracie, don't cry all of your life thinking about me. Instead remember the good times we had, the times when we laughed, maybe the times when we cried. But don't be stuck in the past, move on. You have a bright future. I know you do. You are a wonderful young woman, and I know someday a man is going to be privilaged to marry you. I desired to be the one, but that didn't work out in the Master's plan. Don't fight the feelings you have. Don't
  10 days ago  •  4,356 views
Keep holding on. Look to the One who sticks closer than a brother. He will always be there for you. :)
  10 days ago  •  4,365 views
T E M P E S T  
sad, sad story. :( *cries*
  10 days ago  •  4,388 views
I've read this multiple times and have cried during all of them... you're a very strong person and I hope you are feeling better Narrow!
  10 days ago  •  4,359 views
Wanderin Boy Memorial  
*tear* That was beautifully written.
I'm sorry. If you ever want to talk about anything, feel free to message me. *hugs*
  9 days ago  •  4,376 views
Prarie Rose  
Wow, I never knew what you went through. You are an amazing girl. Most people that go through things like that make their lives and other peoples lives miserable. But you are always so kind to everyone here on PB. We all love you. You are an inspiration to me. Remember God is always with you no matter what. God sends hard times our way to test us. He's done it to me too. Just stand strong. )
Yea,though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,I will fear no evil:for thou art with me thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.-Psalms 23:4
  9 days ago  •  5,181 views
No Walkin Farms9  
Still brings tears to my eyes.
  9 days ago  •  4,383 views
Danika you are an inspiring person, I don't know how I could live if I were you, I feel horrible for your loss, I wish their was something I could do, from what I can tell Josh was an amazing person surrounded with amazing people! God has a plan mapped out for all of us before the world even existed! Josh was part of God's masterplan and you were lucky to meet a guy like that-these days finding a guy like that is like finding a fish in the desert-he was certainly one in a million and will be a hero in many people's lives now I'm sure, he might even be an angle up there in heaven, if only people knew about people like him, true heroes hidden behind average society, I wish I could have met him, this story has certainly changed my life. I cry for you Danika and my heart aches for you as well. I don't know if I could make it through the other side if I was you.
Keep holding on Danika, you are his saving Grace.
  9 days ago  •  5,197 views
wow....very touching, and I'm sorry for your loss.
  9 days ago  •  4,359 views
Clair L  
wow have anouther reason to cry tonight(:
  9 days ago  •  4,370 views
Emma Watson  
AWW i almost cried want 2 read more
  8 days ago  •  4,363 views
Inactive Member  
awwww -wipes tear-
  8 days ago  •  4,863 views
I started to cry its so sad I hope you feel better - its also romantic to I bet Josh was so sweet, If you ever need a friend just let me know.
  8 days ago  •  4,851 views
I feel so bad for you. Just reading it made me cry. I can't imagine losing someone that special. I am so sorry.
  8 days ago  •  5,107 views
rest in peace.i know how you feel.
  7 days ago  •  5,084 views
I cried through all of this! I really hope that your feeling alright.
  7 days ago  •  5,078 views
That was a REALLY touching story. I have lost a close grandparent, a favorite dog, but never a best friend. That's really cool though that you were able to go through this and still be ok, that takes a strong person. This story is truly inspiring!
  6 days ago  •  3,853 views
i aam sobiing onn thee offiice floooor. So toucching!
  5 days ago  •  3,859 views
I have the same thing to say as WilbursWish. That's both sad and touching, as well as inspiring. I'll pray for you.
  5 days ago  •  3,832 views
Such an inspiring story, my condolences for your loss, but I am glad that you shared this with us.
  4 days ago  •  3,825 views
Seven Sins  
narrow, this is such a sad story, im sorry you have had to go through so much at such a young age.
  4 days ago  •  3,831 views
Aww! I'm so sorry!
  4 days ago  •  4,198 views
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