These past few Spring-like days, have made me think so much of Austin.
I think Spring may have been his favorite time of year. He hated being stuck in the house and loved the warmer, longer days of Spring. It was an opportunity for him to ride his bike, play basketball and visit his friends.
There is a basket behind my side door that is still filled with his baseball glove and other sport equipment. It doesn't seem right that he won't be here to use them this season. And I just can't make myself move them from their spot.
Spring also means the grass will begin growing, which again reminds me of him. He would be excited that his mowing...or rather "money season" was beginning. He mowed several yards in the neighborhood last year and enjoyed having the extra cash. People probably think we spoiled Austin with the latest gadgets (like PSPs and MP4s) but he usually paid for them with his money. Sometimes, if he saved extra hard and long for something, we would kick in and help. I thought it was a good lesson for him, to learn to save for something he wanted and to see the value of hard work. He also appreciated what he purchased more and took care of it, because he realized how expensive it was.
Spring Break is approaching and the house will certainly be quieter without Austin here. We usually spent the break being lazy and sleeping late in the beginning and then spring cleaning towards the end. He enjoyed working out in the shed with his Dad, pulling out accessories we'd be using for the season. Sometimes we'd take trips to the mountains, or just small fishing trips and picnics. Whatever we did, it was together as a family.
This year, there are only three of us. And that number seems so strange to us, not what we're used to, not normal. We're trying to face it with braveness but there is a sadness in all our hearts. As we see the flowers grow and life begin in the world again, we are reminded of the precious life that left us too soon. He was like a flower, not fully bloomed. I can only imagine what an addition he has made to God's garden.