Saturday, April 20, 2013

Mathew Jacob Riley, From Your First Breath To Your Last, I Will Always Remember You!

Mathew  was born May 9, 1996 in Greenville, Pennsylvania at UPMC Horizon Hospital. 7lbs 5 oz and 20 inches long. He was born at 8:14 am. Several babies were born that morning only minutes apart. It was Thursday and a beautiful morning, the sun was shining and it was a perfect spring day. What a beautiful day God had given us for the birth of what would be our last baby. His name was chosen from the bible, Mathew, meaning child of God! Jacob, meaning may God protect! Perfect! As was he. Beautiful blue eyes and the blondest hair I had ever seen it was almost white! Perfect from head to toe. As dad and I looked at each other we cried. His birth was easy, no problems for either him nor me, we were in love!
God had so blessed us with this new life and we were to teach him and train him to know God and to know love. That we did! We taught him to love others, to love himself, to be kind and to appreciate life and all that we were blessed with. We taught him about life and we taught him about respecting himself and respecting others. We gave him instruction for 16 years hoping that what we had taught him would be enough to carry him through this life, to live well, to find a mate and to succeed along his path.
You give birth to a child and each day you look at this child and you think I know him so well! Now knowing what I know, I don't think that we know them half as well as we should. I don't think that we but into their lives as much as we should. It is so hard to parent in this century, so hard to know all the burdens that our children our carrying and all the demons they are facing. 
Mathew's 16 years were the best 16 years of our lives, the happiest 16 years of our lives! What innocence as I look into his eyes in this picture, what memories it brings to me, as well as a flood of tears. Great sorrow as well as great joy! Every night those 16 years fill my dreams as well as every second of everyday!
On April 20, 2013, his father and I woke up just as we had every other day for work. Unbeknownst to me what had occurred over the night. His father knowing how badly it would upset me, remained quite, hoping that the situation was just a false alarm. He did tell me that the police were there and there was a phone call but did not tell me details, just that he had left over the night and was not back yet.What he did not tell me was: the police had awoken my husband at 2 am letting him know that several of his friends had received a text message that was very disturbing showing a picture of our son with a make shift noose around his neck. The police produced no proof, my husband checked for our son, who was not in his room, then checked outside. The police then searched around finding nothing, spoke with my husband who explained that Mathew had snuck out on multiple occasions to go to friends without permission. Mathew was a wild one, very rebellious and very 16 year old boyish.  Mathew had several friends that were a terrible influence on him, dragging him down into the depths of hell. Friends you would never call a friend! Drugs and alcohol were their main focus and they encouraged Mat to do them with them as well. If there was trouble to get into with a friend it seemed as if Mat couldn't resist. We had our share of sleepless nights with our Mat and it wasn't uncommon for him to let himself out at all hours of the night, without permission and returning at times before we got up. We knew this just because parents know it! We knew EVERYTHING, we knew which kids to stear Mat from and atempted at our best but they of course were to persuasive for a 16 yr old.
At 5:00 am up as usual getting ready for work, I walk out to my car, walk back in, have to go out again because I forgot something, now I am getting mad because I remember I forgot something else I go out the 3rd time and as I am coming back in the house, my husband hands me the phone, and he's running past me with a look on his face that I will never forget! It's that look that people that are terrified get, the you've just seen a ghost look! His dad says call 911, I just found our son, I turned to look and there hanging in our tree in our back yard is my heart of hearts, my precious son and the love of my life! It was then and there I felt as if I myself had just died.

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