Children are blessings from God himself and anyone who is a parent knows just how special life with a child is! Now, parenting is not always easy, in fact, it rarely is! Being a parent takes a lot of hard work and effort, but in the end, it’s all worth it! And, even when tragedy befalls a family, God is always there to make sure we are all right.
A little boy named Leland Shoemake was just six years old when he began his battle against a rare, yet terrifying, disease. Leland, who is from Williamson, Georgia, contracted a free-living amoeba, Balamuthia mandrillaris, and this led to a serious infection in his brain and spinal cord. It was a tough and grueling battle, and Leland fought hard. But, tragically the little boy passed away on September 25, 2015. His parents, Amber and Tim, we crushed and they returned home from the hospital to pick out clothes for Leland’s burial. It was then when the couple spotted a note sitting on the table in their living room. What they discovered left them in tears! This note was from Leland, and it was handwritten in a spiral-bound notebook. When Amber read the words for the first time, she instantly broke down in tears. The note read: “Still with you / thank you mom and dad /love mom and dad/ it’s a good day.”
“We were in shock and broke down as soon as we saw it,” Amber said. “He was amazing in life and still is after his passing. He touched everyone he met and we are amazed at how many lives he’s touched since he left us.” Amber even got a tattoo of Leland’s final words that were inked in his exact handwriting. She decided to share what Leland meant to her in a Facebook post and to encourage others. Here is what she said:
“The one thing he loved most was playing in the dirt. I never imagined that would be the thing that would take him from me. He was my world. He made me a mother. We struggled so hard to have him. He was a preemie baby but came out screaming and healthy. He was smart from day one. He knew his ABC’s, numbers, colors, shapes and 20 sight words by the time he was a year old. He was our little nerd and we loved that about him. He loved school and loved to learn. He loved the history channel, the weather channel, documentaries and anything about history. He loved ships like the Titanic and learning about things like WWII. He was perfect. His favorite movie was Jaws. His favorite director was Steven Spielberg. And his favorite actor was Adam Sandler. He loved his brother and his family so much. He was the life of every party. His smile could light up a city. He was the smartest, most caring, loving little boy there ever was. He was taken from us too soon. He could have done great things in this world.”
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