Sunday, January 11, 2009
I really am at a loss for words. Such conflicting emotions. I am so sad and tired, yet so amazed at the outpouring of love and prayers from friends and people I do not even know from around the world. I haven't said the words out loud and having to type them is almost as bad. Thomas went to heaven Monday, January 5th 2009. I really cannot believe I am writing this, but I have so much to say and I believe it will be of value to Caroline and new baby in years to come. At this point, I am only able to say a few things that I feel I have to write and then I will fill in more details and stories in days, weeks and years to come.
We went to church Sunday January 4th, ate lunch with family and friends, spent the evening watching Planet Earth and playing with Caroline, eating ice cream for dessert, and went to sleep, Thomas woke up to go to school early on Monday morning. He kissed me goodbye, I was still in bed, but awake. He got in the car after getting my love note (for lack of a better description!--see next post,) buckled his seat belt and two minutes later he hit an icy patch on a bridge and went to heaven. I got a call around an hour after the accident telling me to come to the hospital. Another hour later they gave me the news.
First and foremost, I have a peace that Thomas (my devoted, precious husband) is in heaven and he has been able to see the love and events that have been happening this week. God is good. I can still say that and believe in it with all of my being even after the tragedy.
Secondly, I would not be able to type this, get out of bed, play with Caroline or anything for that matter if it was not for the prayers being lifted up by everyone constantly. Please continue to do so for as long as you possibly can.
Just to clear the air a little more...Thomas and I are pregnant. We had not told anyone (except for my sister Becky, and I wasn't supposed to!) because it was so early in our pregnancy. We had planned on sharing the news by having Caroline wear a "big sister" t-shirt to her 2nd birthday party coming up in a few weeks. While at the hospital Monday morning I told the doctors who came to give me an update that I was pregnant because I was desperate for them to do all that they could to save him (I know that they were, but like I said I was desperate.) Apparently others heard me and somehow our special announcement ended up on the TV news for all to hear (I am okay with this now, it allowed more people to pray more specifically, but it did take away the joy of being able to announce it to our friends and family.) A few other things they got wrong in the report-Caroline is 23 months old and I am on a year leave from working at Harp Elementary and most importantly Thomas was using his seatbelt.
I know those of you close to me have heard me talk about this so much--you can skip this paragraph!
We are faithful seatbelt wearers and when the policeman came to talk to me at the hospital that morning that wasn't even a question in my mind, about his use of a seatbelt, so I did not even think to ask him about it. (The policeman did not share with me any details, he was just giving condolences.) I did not find out until the next day from a friend that the television news stations had all reported the false information about the seatbelt not being used. It was like a knife to my heart. My friends went to the car, saw the seat belt still buckled in and where the firemen had cut it off of him. My sister's co-worker's husband was the fireman on the scene who was one of the men who cut off the seatbelt. I say all of this because I know in the past when I heard (which I will never do again) of an accident where a seatbelt was not being used, I might get mad at that person or feel that they should have known better, etc. This can be a lesson for everyone to not believe everything they hear in the media.
I especially did not want Caroline, new baby or any of the thousands of students to think of their Dad, teacher, friend as being irresponsible or reckless. I am coming to a peace about this so please do not think I have any ill feelings toward the police department! They work tirelessly for our safety and I appreciate them all very much. The policeman who visited me that morning had very kind words for me and I could tell he was very broken up about the situation.
I know KNWA and the Morning News ran new stories with the correct information and I am so, so, so, grateful. Please let me know who else you have read or saw that corrected the information so that I can thank them. *I have since heard that all of the stations and newspapers have reported the correct information.*
The thought of trying to come up with words to thank my friends and family for being with me through this is daunting. One day I will have the words. Right now all I can say is simply "THANK YOU!" The constant company, food, calls, texts, and e-mails I treasure. I also appreciate all the help with the house and the "technical" aspects of all that is going on. I may never even know all of the things that were done for us.
I know this sounds silly, but I am also thankful for Facebook, I don't know what I would be doing without it. I read each and every posting that is sent to me or to his "In Memory of Mr. Culp" page set up by his students. Try the link: http://www.facebook.com/inbox/?ref=mb#/group.php?gid=48331982233&ref=ts
I love the stories and memories posted there.
His precious students (and faculty): I love you and I know you are hurting so much, too. Let's get through this together to make Mr. Culp proud. You can ask our friends about this, but he never quit talking about you guys. Seriously, all the time. He loves you so.
Please keep in touch, In Christ-Bonnie