Tuesday, March 29, 2011
How to Celebrate Jesse's 15th Birthday
In 2005 I met a young man named Sean Busby. A professional snowboarder, Sean had recently been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. A story all his own (and can be read at www.ridingoninsulin.org) Sean was determined to find good in his diagnosis. Sean and I worked together to bring Riding on Insulin to Wisconsin in the Spring of 2005. Jesse participated in that first camp and every other Wisconsin camp after that.
In 2007 I started working at BRAVA Magazine. I met our fashion editor, Mollie Shambeau. We had a different way of working with one another (i.e. LOUD) and over the years developed a strong connection. In that time Mollie would receive several text message "merks" from Jesse. For those who don't know, a "merk" is kind of like a 1980's "made ya look". Mollie and Jesse met for the first time in November of 2009. The merks continued.
In that time Mollie had never met Sean.
When Jesse died it was never a question to me that Sean would deliver the eulogy. Over the years Sean became family to us and a big brother to Jesse. It was then that Sean and Mollie met for the very first time coming together in a time of great sadness.
Flash forward to June of 2010 when Mollie packed up her bags full of scarves and shoes and moved to nowhere, Utah, to live with Sean. Since then they have traveled the world literally...and while on an expedition in Iceland, Sean proposed. (Photo above)
While driving to this moment in Iceland, "You and Me" by Dave Matthews Band came on - a song that meant a lot to Jesse & I. Signs were everywhere.
Today I received a voicemail from Mollie checking in and "Oh, by the way, Michelle, mark your calendar, we are getting married on 9/24!" What an indescribable feeling to realize as it came from my phone...that Mollie & Sean had picked Jesse's 15th birthday for their wedding day - without even realizing it.
I believe as I've said many times that death did not silence Jesse's soul. Sometimes a solid sign from him - like this - is enough to keep me smiling.
There is no doubt to me that Jesse will be there on 9/24/2011 to celebrate both his birthday, and their new beginning.