Our family reunited – a piece of heaven
(This post was originally written by Michael Hock on November 14, during a weekend stay in Savannah, GA.)
Today was a great day… a glimpse of what I imagine life will be like after we die. It’s been three weeks since Houston, Hadley, and I have seen AJ. The kids are at their best when they are together and it has been hard on them to be apart. So Lani and I decided that we should plan a short little family get-away in Savannah, GA. It’s about five hours from our home in North Carolina and two hours from AJ’s treatment facility in Jacksonville, Florida, so it seemed like a nice “middle point” for us to meet. It’s also a place that both MeiLani and I have always wanted to visit.
When we got to the hotel all three of us (Hunter was too sick and not able to see AJ), were very excited to see Mom and AJ. When the elevator arrived on our floor we started heading down a windy hall to the room. I tried to remind the excited kids that this was a hotel and we don’t need to run in nice hotels.
As we were walking down the hall the kids could hear MeiLani’s voice and although they tried to heed my warning, their little legs just couldn’t seem to stop from going faster and faster until they turned the corner, whooshed right past me, dropped their suitcases they had been so diligent in bringing from the car, and sprinted toward Lani.
Hadley Bear kept repeating, “Mommy? Mommy?!” as if in disbelief even though she could see her. Lani had tears in her eyes. Houston didn’t even stop at Lani and went straight into the hotel room and jumped on the bed. “Where’s my AJ!!!” he yelled when he opened the door. Bear stopped to give Lani a hug until she heard Houston and immediately remembered who was inside and went to go tackle her brothers.
My family is the most important part of my life. I felt so much joy holding my little AJ. Having our family reunited (mostly) together felt exactly what I imagine heaven will be like. We were all so happy to see each other. Houston and AJ were so excited to see each other. A few times in our short weekend, they started rolling around on the floor together wrestling so excited to be together.
It was so awesome to be together! Five people staying in a small hotel room was not at all a burden, but instead it was the way we would have chosen even if given the option of a mansion. The feeling of all being in one room brought an energy from just being together. Even though we missed our baby brother Hunter, I couldn’t help but think of heaven and how excited we will be to be reunited with our Father in Heaven, and loved ones.
We strolled down the riverfront with the three kids and Lani had tears in her eyes. She said the same thing I had been thinking, “This must be what Heaven will be like.”
We had a couple people comment on what a sweet family we had that night, as if they could tell the energy of love that we must have been exuding. Lani said she wanted to tell everyone that passed by that we had just been reunited and it doesn’t matter what happens, because this is what it will be like in the end. She refrained because she was worried she would start crying like a crazy woman with each person. I’m grateful for eternal families. This situation with AJ has been really difficult, but I know that no matter what happens at the end, we will be together again someday.