Tuesday, November 13, 2018

This Month: Ten Years

Dearest Daniel,

    In fifteen days, the calendar will have reached the day of your sudden departure once again. This year, it will have been ten years since you left Earth.  I know that time is marked quite differently in Heaven.  It sometimes feel as if your sudden death bent time right here.

               As you know, in the intervening ten years, we reside on the same farm.  Most of the animals you knew have departed and joined you, except for Sally, the golden labrador who is very old and is recovering from a recent stroke,  and Warrior Princess Camellia, the alpaca, who is quite mature but remains healthy. One or two of the ducks we bought together are still here, but the rest of them came to us after your departure. A number of the Rhode Island Red chickens and roosters are children or grandchildren of Ross the Rooster that you bought just a few days before your departure.The horses, the sheep, the poultry, and the rest of the dogs and the cats were all additions following your passing.

               Of course it has been difficult for us and for your siblings not to have had you here. The eldest three have all graduated from college and are on to jobs.  One has their own home, and one has their own business, and one of them is married, but I know you know this, because I felt your spirit in the wind that day when we entered the church.  You also have a precious nephew who knows all about you and would share your sense of humor and your taste in many things.

      Sadly, there are still twelves and teens who collapse and die with no other notice due to sudden arrhythmic syndromes, just as you did that day.  There are AEDs now in airports and a lot of public buildings.Your friend Olivia Hoff's mother, Corinne Ruiz has seen to it that many schools and porting venues have an AED now.   I have been less effective, in this regard,  than she has. Wal-Mart didn't wish to get one, citing legal issues. I know that even an AED might not have helped you that day.  I still have one here now.  Please look out for Corinne and for Olivia's brother if you can.

                It doesn't seem like ten years.  It feels like three.  If I live to be a hundred I will not forget
how it felt when you hugged me when you were almost as tall as I am. The friends you had while here on Earth are still so ind to me. Please send my love to Papa Lawrence.  I love you Daniel, wider than the oceans and deeper than the seas.


Saturday, September 8, 2018

"Westward: The Novel is Released !

Westward:The Novel is a 6x9 inch book or available electronically, and is 322 pages long.

                      Since Daniel's passing, I have not returned to do any of the jobs I had before. Instead, I needed to be home with his siblings, his animals and on the land he new almost all of his life.  In that time, I have written books.  First, I wrote the one that told of Daniel's life and of his passing, called What I Learned from Daniel,  which is atop the page. Next there was the Rational Preparedness: A Primer to Preparedness book.  Then, there was a first novel, Portsoy Woods, which is my first novel and tells of a family during a US financial collapse who live in the country.  Lawrence DeWolfe Kelsey:The Life of the Explorer  is the true story of an American patriot and explorer, who also happens to be Daniel's grandfather.

                       Westward: The Novel is the story of a young woman with four children who loses her husband suddenly, just after he makes the final transitions from being a police officer to an attorney. She is left not only navigating life with four young children without her husband, but she is also left needing to return to work in order to support herself and her family. This is the inspiring story of how she does that while continuing to parent. Ultimately, she must also navigate finding the second great love of her life, and how she and her children adapt to his becoming a new part of their family.

                      Of course, Amazon has Westward, but my publisher seems to have the paper bound book and the electronic versions available less expensively at this link:



                 Thanks so much for continuing to read from this collection.

   Best wishes to everyone. 

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

On Having a Pure Heart


                I thought you might enjoy this soulful new song by John Clark Blackwell


Daniel, I think you always had a pure heart.

Congratulations, Al Yankovic

               Daniel, Yesterday, August 27, 2018, your friend Al Yankovic finally got his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  Yes, it is surprising that he had never received one before.  He was apparently very excited about this. I knew this would please you too.  Of course, when it came time for him to speak, he asked that people didn't attack it with a pick axe as they had the one for President Trump, which incidentally simply keeps getting replaced.
               Al continue to work, satirize and interview in the manner in which you recall him. As we both commented at his concert, he certainly has a great deal of energy!

Saturday, August 25, 2018

The Best Review


                          This book was released in the Autumn of 2012, and was the story of Daniel's life here on Earth, and of his sudden departure from it.  I wrote it for many reasons. First, I had a strong desire to share what a special person Daniel was while here on Earth and unless someone from my family told the world, then no one would know. Secondly, I had a strong desire to write down everything about his life and about his passing before I somehow forgot any of it. The memory is a strange thing after the death of a child. Some incidents are brushed with gold afterward, and other periods of time may be forgotten until years afterward. I was taking no chances. I also had a desire to help those who also were grappling with the sudden and unexpected loss of their own child, or who were navigating grief.  Lastly, I suppose I must have written for the simple catharsis of  it. There was relief sometimes, after a chapter at a time was completed. Sometimes there was also a feeling of closeness to Daniel as I wrote.

                        I did not experience great book sales with this book, but there have been plenty of letters or e-mails from all over the world in which people told me how touched they were by the book and how they feel they know Daniel.  One family, had a beach funeral and remembrance for Daniel where they said a few words about his loss, and tossed beautiful orange flowers into the ocean, and then wrote to tell me, including the photographs they took.  I have also heard from other families where their child had died of Sudden Unexpected Death in Childhood (SUDC) or of Long QT Syndrome, which is also a potential consideration in Daniel's passing.  The world's response to this book has helped me to feel tethered to the world and to my remaining children here, rather than to want to simply evaporate in order to go to find Daniel. I will always be grateful for the contacts from these people.

                        This Autumn, the book will have been available for sale for six years, and Daniel's passing will have been ten years ago. However, the book and the experience are still giving to me, and I would imagine, to others as well. This week, the very best review the book has received was posted on Amazon.
 (Link to the review below:
 https://www.amazon.com/What-Learned-Daniel-Jane-Alexandra-Krehbiel/dp/1479752657    )


The tragic account of Jane-Alexandra Krehbiel and her family's sudden, tragic and completely unexpected loss of 12 1/2-year old Daniel goes well beyond a sad and tearful account of loss, grief, and the search for catharsis, understanding, acceptance and healing.

This little man was particularly bright and insightful, having a soul and a spiritual connection to the hearts and minds of those around him. He was kind almost to a fault. He had an uncanny understanding of science and technology, the terms of which he used to draw parallels to the brokenness he observed in other people.

I don't think the author wrote this account without the fear of what the sense of vulnerability can do when you open every thought and emotion for anyone to read and react to. Jane-Alexandra Krehbiel takes us into the innermost otherwise secret chambers of little Daniel and the family's love and reverence for the dozen years they were allowed to enjoy such a precious gift from God.

The book should be read by anyone who suffered a loss and feels the grief that accompanies an event that cannot be changed or reversed. But I recommend it too to anyone who loves to peer into the souls of others...if you value the visceral dimension of our human condition, and cannot seem to find much beyond the typical accounts of people you cannot relate to, I urge you to buy this book. It will be food and sustenance for your heart and your spirit...I promise.         Rodd Mann


               Daniel, I think he understood. 




Monday, June 18, 2018

I Miss Showing You New Songs


      Sometimes I see something like a computer, a photograph, or a song you would have liked.

This song was released two weeks ago and uses so much of the computers you loved so much while you were here on Earth.

    This is Nigel Stanford, with Dallin Applebaum doing the vocals:


Saturday, May 5, 2018

Daniel's Twenty-Second Birthday

            Tomorrow will be your twenty-second birthday. I can hardly believe that in November, it will have been ten years since your abrupt departure, which so often seems like yesterday. I still remember all of the details about you. What you liked, what you would say, your wisdom, and your favorite games, computers and foods. I clearly remember what your hug felt like. Your nephew, who plays with some of the better items you had when you were small, knows you, by pictures and by our recollections. Sometimes, it's as if you are simply away at college.  Your friends are all adults!  Occasionally, I envy them for being here while you are not, but just as occasionally I sometimes feel sorry for them for having to navigate the trials of life, when you were called Home, and spared so many of them.
             Just as I did on that day when the medical helicopter staff finally ceased CPR, I knew that you would go to find Papa Lawrence, and Jesus, and I told you to go, and not to be afraid, and that I would handle everything from here.  I have done my best to honor that promise to you and to God, who blessed me more than you can imagine by allowing me to be your mother.
             When you first passed, I felt occasional things which led me to believe that you might still be able to hear me occasionally.  I haven't felt any of those in a long time, but I know you have other concerns and important tasks with God.  This week, I was thinking about you and wondering how often you think of me. That song you used to like that was a hit when you and I used to drive to places in Charlottesville when the older kids were in college there, came on the radio. I haven't heard it in years. I'll look it up and place it at the bottom of the page. Something about "A Hundred Years to Live", by Five for Fighting.  I took it to mean that you knew I was thinking about you, and darling, I wish a hundred years is what God had given to you.

           Happy Birthday and All my Love,


Saturday, February 10, 2018

Somehow, I am Still Lucky

Dear Daniel,

           I don't get the chance to go out by myself as often as I used to. I am busy with your nephew, the horses, the dogs, the alpacas or something else at the farm most days.    This week, I got the chance to run and errand in Richmond, and it went fairly quickly, and so I had the time to make a couple of stops during the return trip.

           One of the stops I made was at an antique shop. There were a couple of things I knew they had that your sister would like, and so I bought them with a plan to put them away for her.  While I was there, I felt compelled to talk to the shop owner, a man who'd been there a long time.  I spoke about all of the kids, and the man actually had met your brother Adam and knew his work.   Then, I told him about you.  After nine years, I deal with the matter and your loss matter of factly when I relate the story. It's not that I don't feel it, and it's not that I am not, at times, sorrowful, but I have the faith I had the day of your departure, and I have the perspective that comes from nine years of contemplating that if God called you in such an unusual way, that he must have had purpose in an action that has touched so many other lives.  I told the man what had happened, and it brought him to tears.  I told him that it was alright, because God has you.  I thought you might like to know that people are shedding tears and missing you, and remembering their own losses from Earth, even nine and a half years after your departure.

            Most days I deal well with your being in Heaven while I complete my work with the rest of your family here on Earth.  Of course sometimes, I shed tears, or wonder what I could have done that God would see fit to call my youngest son home.  I don't think it's about me though. I think it's that you are so important, that you were needed at Home for some reason, and that I must accept this.
             My life has been so much richer as a result of your having been born to us, and have occupied the place of my youngest son.  I remember your presence on Earth as if it were yesterday. Sometimes, when I am deep in sleep, usually at four am, I feel you sitting with me. I am so proud of you, for so many reasons,
even now.

             I love you wider than the oceans and deeper than the seas,   always.

Sunday, January 7, 2018