Jode Patricia Wonsey, aka-Sunshine...A Year With God

Anyone knows that a part of recovery involves dealing with your
feelings. You never forget things, but you have to confront your
emotions. So, as a part of healing, I am going to share my feelings
about a sweet soul who went to be with God on 3/30/10.
At the time
of this writing, one year ago, I was texting and Tweeting Jode. Nothing
of importance, just our usual banter. She made fun of my pregnancy
cravings and I told her to FedEx me some smothered pork chops.
Of
course, we still enjoyed running gags about Las Vegas and swore we
would be returning to Vegas some kind of way. Had I known that was the
last night I would ever talk to Jode, I think I would have ended it with
"love ya, Chica". It was a love between friends. In our case, fast
friends.
Jode
wasn't in my life very long, but our friendship was full of joy and
laughs. This, I would find out at her funeral, was why everyone fell in
love with her. She had an infectious laugh and a smile that was simply
mesmerizing. She was our "Hippie" and I still think she didn't have but
like, four pairs of socks because she was from California. I'm sticking
to my story!
I
still remember the phone call that brought me to my knees last year. I
don't think I broke down like that in my adult life. When I lost my
grandmother, I had time to brace myself...to prepare my heart and mind
for her transition. You couldn't possibly tell me that Sunshine was
gone. Why would our Jode be gone? How could this happen?
Nobody
wanted to be the one to tell me because I was pregnant with CJ. The
calls flooded in asking me if I was okay and all I kept wondering was
why? How in the world could a woman like Jode be taken away from people
who loved her and never hesitated to tell her?
As
many years as I have been going to church, I always heard that God had a
reason for everything he did. We may not understand, but there was a
reason. I struggled to find out why. One year later, I still wonder. But
then, I decided that I would not be honoring her memory and staying
positive by constantly questioning God's decisions.
Jode
was a positive person. This was our Hippie. A California girl who was
full of smiles and joy. A person like her should not be grieved over,
but remembered. Occasionally, I sit and think about our many
conversations and running gags. I drop a line on her Facebook page
every blue moon because she is still alive and well in our hearts and
minds. It is human nature to constantly ask "why God"? But everyone is
in your life for a reason.
Maybe
Jode was in my life to encourage me. She had a vision board with goals
on it that she wanted to accomplish. In her passing, I find myself
tying up loose ends and checking off my own goals. Not because she made
me stare at my own mortality, but because she was a hustler. The JoJo I
knew had some heavy ambition...and like, one pair of socks! LOL Jode
may have also been placed in my life to help me take more bricks out of
my emotional wall. I had my circle before I met her in person...and
seldom do I let new people in. But something about that girl warmed my
heart and made me feel like we'd been friends for years.
A
little over a year ago, we buried her as she left us physically. That
fateful day in Nashville, I wiped away my tears of sorrow to see
something just as beautiful as Jode herself. I saw a church full of
people who loved her. I saw friends and family of all ages,
ethnicities, backgrounds and walks of life remembering a wonderful
soul. I couldn't help but to pay attention to this display of love.
Yeah, I have laid many friends and relatives to rest, and even my
grandmother had a packed church when she was funeralized. But Jode, in
her 29 years on Earth, touched so many souls. You couldn't help but
smile even in sadness.
So
one year later, I still miss Jode. I don't think I'll stop missing
her. I can't promise I won't cry when I have flashbacks of our good
times, but I can promise that I will respect her memory. I am sure
people still wonder why she had to go and I am sure some people wish
they could have done something different. But one lesson I have learned
is that you cannot change the plan God has in store. We cannot redo
March 2010, though we all wish we could. What we can do is remember
Sunshine with pride.
Whether
you knew her for months or decades, Jode Patricia Wonsey was a
beautiful soul. She was golden. I believe that the natural caretaker
she is won't let her not look down on each of us. So, I remember that
daily as a reason to smile though she is gone. It's natural to want a
wonderful person like her here, to answer the phone and to hug you. But
Jode is with God. I think that is what we have to remember and hold on
to. One year later, the loss still stings. But the love is stronger
than any pain.
Jode,
our Sunshine...we will forever love you and remember you. One year
later, we still miss your physical presence, but your spirit shall never
be forgotten! Neither will your smile and ever-changing hair! Keep
looking down on your loved ones and taking care of us. Jode's family,
stay uplifted and know that she touched us all in a special way. I know
that my words won't bring her back, but believe me when I say that when
a person is loved like she is, it keeps her legacy alive and strong.
Such an awesome person will never leave our minds and our hearts.

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