It was a crisp, cold, December day after church that I sat in my vehicle and read the card a friend left me. She told me how much I had helped her this past year with struggles. She was thanking me and said I was a blessing to her. I gave her strength and courage to work through some life things.

The tears ran down my face uncontrollably.

I never thought I could ever say anything to help someone work through life stuff. I’m just ME, no one special. I don’t have a special title, education, or anything – just me.

At that moment it made me realize that my story does make a difference. I can help others. People must read what I write or watch what I do. I have never been anyone but myself. What I go by is my gut feelings and my faith. However, as I’m helping others they are helping me.

You see the tears that ran down my face were tears of sadness for the loss of my son. Sadness that Tyler’s accident had to happen in order for me to be able to help someone else. If we had told him he could not leave that night to go hang out with friends, then my story that has touched so many lives would not have happened. Their lives may have not have been changed.  They may not have received hope or courage to keep going.

So when I think I can’t go on and the tears flow, I remember what a friend once told me.  She said the only way she got through her loss was to wake up each day and in the shower she would wash the tears away. She said many mornings she would cry, talk to God, yell or just sit until the tears would all wash down the drain. She told me it helped her feel better so that she could start her day as a loving mom to 3 little kids that had just lost their Dad.

I remember the first few days after Tyler’s accident I did cry in the shower. I guess it was the only place I could be without anyone seeing or hearing me. It felt cleansing, healing, and peaceful. It was there that I would talk to God and just be still to listen and soothe my tired body. There are still days I get hit – blindsided by my grief. But that is always how it’s been for me.

I still use my friend’s advice and wash my tears down the drain. Now as I am encouraged to help others, I know it’s helping me take one step forward also.  I’m reminded daily to keep telling my story with the hope that it will help someone.  I encourage each of you to reach out to a friend that has helped you and tell them how much it meant. Because you just never know, you may be helping them heal just as much as you.

Missy Hillmer

My name is Missy Hillmer. I’m married, live in a small town named Palmer, NE and have 3 children. Jake is our oldest who is 19 years old and Gracie is 11 who lives here with us. Tyler which was 15 years on August 20, 2013 is now in Heaven. He was killed in a car accident just 3 short days after his 15th birthday. I am very honest, very real sometimes to the point of not being fun, I guess that’s because I’m a black and white kind of girl. I like to look at the positive in every situation. I really believe there are two ways to look at things. Look for the bad or the good. The “bad” does me no justice and can spiral out of control in a heartbeat. The “good” however gives me hope and it connects with my belief that God is with me through everything. I believe my faith has gotten me through life and especially since my son’s accident. I pray a lot more, watch for the signs that God gives me, listen to my inner gut feeling, as my husband calls it and really focus on living a simple life. Family means everything to me, I love to laugh and think it’s the best medicine for any problem. Music soothes my sole and being outside in the sun brings me great joy! I have learned that many times you cannot control the storm in your life but, you can learn to dance in the rain. I really mean it when I say DANCE in the RAIN! The summer before Tyler’s accident, Tyler, Gracie & I danced in the rain. This memory I will never forget! Since Tyler’s accident I am passionate about telling my story with the hope that it will help or inspire at least one person.