Every year that has passed after Chrishia’s death Father’s Day has been difficult. I have found myself on a loosing end of an emotional battle to hold back tears and yearning for something I had been used to and very proud of. The feeling of waking up to plans of spending time doing things with Chrishia, going places, laughing, eating and the excitement on her face with the anticipation of me reading a card she hand made or a gift she put time and effort into finding or making. Just so she could show me how much she loved her dad.
On Sept 13th sometime after 1 AM I remember walking into my house alone, shocked, heart broken, and trying to grasp what had just happened in the last few hours. Facing the same reality I had just started to cope with in saying good bye to Chrishia’s mother after a difficult battle with breast cancer. I remember the utter silence walking in, going up the stairs to our rooms and waking into Chrishia’s room. Turning on the light and looking at her bed and realizing she was not coming home again and would never lay in that bed I had gotten used to tucking her into and saying bed time prayers with. It was Chrishia that told me I had to stop crying nightly when saying prayers as I hurt mourning over the loss of her mother. It was Chrishia that gave me strength and helped me start putting one foot in front of the other, because she needed me. Reminding myself every day that I still had Chrishia, my beautiful sweet daughter that needed her Dad.
As these weeks turned into months and now years, facing Father’s Day is beyond words. No matter how hard I try to fight to hold it back I find myself in tears and overwhelmed with grief and loss. As I am learning for myself and through talking to other parents, and family that have lost to this problem we face today, “Time does not in fact heal ALL wounds.” I tried to put into words a few nights ago about these feelings. The best I could do was to explain, my heart doesn’t accept her loss and is still eager and yearning for the moments that are supposed to happen, like Chrishia’s class of 2018 High School Graduation. Her class mates were walking across the stage with their parents watching with pride and excitement. But I wasn’t among those parents because Chrishia was not among her classmates and friends as she was supposed to be. When I woke up on her Birthday my heart wanted to wake her up to hug her and tell her “Happy 18Th Birthday” and let her know how proud I was of her. She was supposed to go have fun with her friends and have a huge party celebrating this special moments. But Her friends weren’t at the party they were off living their lives doing other things. I never got to wake her up, I never had the chance to wrap my arms around her and tell her how proud I was of her and how deeply I loved my little girl because she wasn’t in her bed room sleeping. She died at 9:30 PM Sept 12th on a street intersection in front of the city hospital. My brain sees her lack of presence, my brain saw her laying lifeless on a table in the emergency room. It processed to the funeral, the difficult choices of the planning, and the funeral itself. It processed the kids that came to pay their final respects and having to experience something they themselves had a hard time understanding and accepting.
My heart still hasn’t started to communicate with my brain. My heart seemingly refuses to accept what should be happing in this normal progression of Chrishia’s life and me getting to experience, isn’t happening. I can only guess this is what its like for others as well. To seemingly have the feeling of your arm trying to reach out to pick up a class of water, only the arm isn’t their and your heart and mind are not in agreement. You expect to feel that glass. The weight of it filled with something refreshing and expect to hold it and drink from it but you can’t, not with that arm. Only this loss is greater than a hand or an arm. It’s an emotional and physical piece of your life that has been permanently removed and you can’t get it back. Nothing will replace it, nothing can imitate it, and nothing will ever make it better.
For me the only thing that will even begin to help me find peace with her death is justice. The justice she should have had. Instead my mind reminds me that a man presumably resting comfortably in his home in Collin county enjoyed yet another year of waking up to seeing his kids growing another year older and experiencing the things that I should be able to experience as well. He woke up today and saw both of his kids, he probably got to enjoy hugging them and telling them how much he loves them. He enjoyed having a special meal with his family, his kids. He drove around town, went places and did things to share this special day with his kids.
My mind tells me he probably isn’t worried that he is driving around with no license, that he took a 13 yr old girls life 5 years ago, and ended her life and changed her father’s life. I can’t help but to think that he doesn’t care he lied to the police the night he killed Chrishia and said he was “borrowing the truck from a friend” only to be told 2 month later by the investigating officer ” We know he basically owns the truck. The original owner said he sold it to him about a year ago, but because he doesn’t have a license he can’t put the truck in his name.” And he already had the truck back within weeks of killing Chrishia and was driving it again. He lied to the Immigration judge in Dallas when as per the ICE Agent that briefed me “He said if he lost his immigration battle he would pack up his entire family and just go back to Mexico.” Instead in April 2017 he and his Illegal wife purchased a home in Collin County and moved without telling the authorities. So when they came to arrest him for not turning himself into the court in Oct 2017 for deportation “they were not able to locate him.”
I can’t help but take the information I have learned over the years and believe he is a lier and will pass on his poor values to his kids and they will be equally the same kind of person as he is. But he will continue to watch his kids grow and will continue to enjoy this holiday with his kids every year and have no thought of Chrishia N. Odette being killed at his hands on Sept 12th 2014.
Father’s day will continue to he just as hard and painful for me as it is every year until the politicians on the State and Federal level see what its like and understand what a Brother, Sister, Mother, Father, Aunt, Uncle, Husband, Wife, and Cousin experience! Finding out their loved one was hit crossing a street and having their neck broken and part of their head crushed and died with blood pooling out their ears, nose and mouth. A brother being hit head on and his car being flipped and being killed by the trauma while his girlfriend survives to only live the memories of that night remembering man she loved and expected to marry is now gone way before his time. A son stabbed to death in his own apartment and his body set on fire to hid the crime. A daughter hit and killed walking across a crosswalk by someone driving and not stoping. Crushing virtually ever bone in her body. A daughter and her husband being rear ended while at a stop light by someone going full speed and never breaking. Killing that daughter and putting her husband in a coma. A son having a paint roller stabbed into his head, his jaw punched so hard it breaks, and then being beaten and strangled multiple times until he is laying on the ground lifeless. A daughter driving home excited to tell her Dad about the new job, just miles away from home and being hit so hard the accident kills her. A daughter out on her evening run, and being spotted and desired so much that when she turns down the advances she is kidnapped and strangled and dumped in a field to hide her death. A daughter shot in the back simply walking down the street with her dad. A child beaten stabbed and beheaded for not joining a gang. A son hit by a truck while riding his motorcycle and getting lodged under the truck and drug several hundred painful feet to his death. When they finally end the madness and stop letting this lawlessness go unanswered.
These things are NOT from some graphic novel or horror movie. These are real accounts of lives lost from people like the man who killed my daughter. We are the Angel Parents that face this unbearable loss. We are all suffering from a lack of justice, and I can speak for many, when I say “we will find no closure or peace without that justice and these days like Father’s Day, or Mother’s day will forever be altered and be one that is mixed with smiles and tears. We will all continue to have family and kids in our lives and try to enjoy those moments. However our families are cheated of the full love and joy we should be able to share because we are all marred with the pain of the one we can’t have with us. The tears will always build up at a sight, or a smell, or something as simple as a color on a wall that reminds us of how our Daughter’s room was panted. Or how our Son liked to have his toast covered in butter with the cheese melted on either side.
I wish the same thing ever year that passes, that those who have never lost to this completely preventable crime never experience it, but its hard at times when you hear these positions say “how much their grandchildren wish on their birthdays they could have the same skin color or eye color as an illegal.” (Nancy Pelosi), “Or that these losses are an isolated incident,” “The problem is created because of the President”. None of that matters because they do not experience what we Angle Parents have. What I experience every Father’s Day as my heart longs for Chrishia’s voice, her touch, her smiles, and my mind along with my brain knowing its not ever going to happen again, because my daughter was killed at the age of 13, way before her time and with all the things that she still had ahead of her that was taken away.
From the deepest parts of my heart I, I do wish other Fathers that blessed and Happy Father’s Day I can’t have. It’s my hope you have had the honor of receiving all the love and joy you should have received from your kids. I hope you held them tight and made sure they knew you loved them, and just how deeply and how much pride you have in them for who they are.
To my fellow Angel Parents, I pray you were able to hold what remains of your families in your arms and they helped you feel the love you and they were denied by the loss of your Son or Daughter.
To a man I didn’t have the honor of meeting but I knew, Billy I pray your reunion with your Son was great and you were able to enjoy being with him in heaven on this special day. Rest in Peace Billy Inman.
Lastly, to you my dear Chrishia,
No words will ever be strong enough to express how much I love you and how happy you made me. From the moment you opened your eyes for the very first time, and I was the first thing you saw in this great big world, to the night I had to say goodbye for the last time. A father couldn’t wish for a better, more loving, beautiful and amazing daughter. You will always be my Daddy’s Little Girl. Rest in Peace my Chrishia, until we are together again. I love you!