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A Hole in My Heart–Part III

I don’t talk about it very much, but when I was 12 years old, my mother died. She was 39, and died following the birth of a baby–a little boy named Terry, who also died. There were three of us older ones–my sister who was 10 and my 7-year-old brother. We desperately wanted the baby to survive, and were deeply disappointed that he did not. In retrospect, I believe God was merciful in taking Terry home with my mom, for although we had great plans for caring for him, it would have been very hard for us. I see that now.

The funeral was in our small church which my dad pastored, and I remember that my dad collapsed when the funeral home attendants carried in the casket. My other vivid memories include being hugged by a lot of people, some of whom I did not know, and that I had a feeling of embarrassment, and that I didn’t know what to say, but I felt as though I should say something. My mom was dearly loved and highly respected. Walls of flowers stood on each side of the casket in which lay my mother and baby Terry.

Those thoughts and others rushed to my mind yesterday, as I stood with the Scott family at the private viewing of Tanya. Glenn fairly had to tear fifteen-year-old Shelby from where her mom lay, and as she was led from the room, this beautiful young woman stretched out her arm to Tanya, weeping and calling, “I can’t leave her. My mom doesn’t want me to leave her here.” Shelby’s sister, Shannon, was paper-white in her grief, and appeared on the verge of collapse.
I write of this, not to embarrass these precious people should they read my remarks, but to emphasize how dear–how priceless–is life, but how fleeting and short may be its duration. How fervently must we grasp the flicker of affection for our family and friends, how quickly must we shed the ugly feelings of anger, deprivation, abandonment and mistrust.

Balm is for the taking, and healing will attend the dreaded holes in our hearts.


My devotional blog is here.

By Shirley Buxton

Still full of life and ready to be on the move, Shirley at 81 years old feels blessed to have lots of energy and to be full of optimism. She was married to Jerry for 64 years, and grieves yet at his death in August of 2019. They have 4 children, 13 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren...all beautiful and highly intelligent--of course. :)

7 replies on “A Hole in My Heart–Part III”

Pam, welcome to my site. Hope you visit here often.
As you probably know from reading here, I knew Tonya only a few months, but from the beginning I knew she was a special person. I believe I am not exaggerating to say that I truly loved her.
Yes, her funeral was beautiful, and the eulogies that were spoken underscored the impact she had made on her world.
May God comfort you.


my special neice.
oh how i will miss you so very much.
i was sadden by the call and could not make
the funeral, as i am here in Arkanasa, but
my children were ther and said it was beautiful.


Oh Sister Buxton–How very sorry I am for the loss of Tanya. I have been out of town. Please know that I will keep you and Bro Buxton as well as Tanya’s family in our prayers. Also, I will be praying for your church. May the Lord bring beauty from ashes.


Sis Eva


How very true…. Let us set aside old pains & long ago wrongs done to us by others. How many times have we done the same and more? I am reminded of the scripture found in Matthew chapter seven. Wow, have I ever learned a lot the last few years on this subject. This is definitely not what we were put on this earth for. We love you & are praying for you.

Shawnna, the first verse of that chapter fairly taps us in the forehead. “Listen,” God was saying. “Don’t judge.”

Thanks for reading my words and for honoring me with a response.

Love you dearly.



Oh, Mike. What can I say? Issues and situations that seem insurmountable and unsolvable, when seen in the context of this family’s grief, are unworthy of the bat of an eye.



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