The Road Back – With Annie's Voice

The first quarter of the school year ended at Mt. Si High School this week.  It’s been challenging and gone by quickly.  We’ve experienced many emotions in our home over the past two months.  My oldest daughter was confronted not only with grief when her friend died , but feelings of guilt, regret and anger  – to name a few.  Learning how to process so many powerful emotions at once is a huge task.  Both for her and for our family.

She is slowly getting back on track at school.  There have been battles along the way and many late night study sessions.  Her grades did improve.  Given the circumstances they are not what she is capable of achieving, but that’s understandable.   I take solace knowing she is healing and we are moving in the right direction, though.  Second quarter is a fresh start.

People heal in different ways.  Some quietly retreat.  Others scream and cry at the top of their lungs.  My daughter is a mix of the two.  She has taken to writing poetry – and it’s helped release her emotions in a positive way.  In my opinion it is beautiful writing.  It comes right from her heart.  I promised her I would publish it when she was ready.  She is ready….

A smell,

intoxicating with a small whiff                            

drawing me near,

wrapping me in an image of beauty,



A pair of eyes,

blue crystals,

never revealing their depth,

once baring the truth,

shone bright with innocence,

disguising a longing to escape.

A smile,

infectious at the very sight,

stretching ear to ear,

stopping hearts at a glance,

burns a hole into my mind,

that can never be filled.

A heart,

twice the size of another,

unpredictably changing,

aching to find real love,

one never falling astray.

A dream,                 

saving lives at will,

never ending possibilities,

handed over on a silver platter,

drift away now,

in the midst of memories,

drenched in despair.

A life,


stretching miles ahead,

cut short,

far from the finish line,

haunting our dreams,

remembering all,

that could have been.

A whisper,

somewhere in the distance,

I hear your voice,

soft as an angel,

music to my ears,

you say to me . . .

Don’t you cry,

everything will be alright,

just close your eyes,                                 

you will see me.

I’m by your side,

take my hand,

let me guide you through,

we will find light,

in this darkness.

These moments of pain,

shall fade in time,

but cherish our memories,

remember our secrets,

every word I spoke,

keep me close to your heart,

find peace within this mystery.

Hold on a little longer,

be stronger than me,

for someday,

we will be together again.

I can hear you,                                                                 

when you call my name,

every word you left unspoken,

in the depths of your heart,

they are mine now.

The end is nowhere near,

don’t give up now,

you can let go,

I will catch you,

if you fall.

Open your eyes,

this is not goodbye,

I wait behind that door,

spend life,

finding the key . . .


before your grave,

I lay down,

the broken promises,

empty dreams,

and this shattered heart,

take them away.

This time,                                                    

I’ll never let you leave,

I feel your spirit,

in every breath I take.

Though we cannot go back,

your beauty lives forever.

Cody Scott Botten


Comments are closed.


  • beautiful Annie,
    I am so happy you are writing about your special friend, Cody. Your words are reaching others more than you know. Every one who loves you feels your pain and I think that extends to even those who don’t …for Love that is lost carries alot of weight. Your ability to put into words those feelings touches my heart and is balm for the soul. Keep writing, honey and know we are with you, loving you, and praying for your family and Cody’s.
    Sending big hugs,
    AC and UM

  • That poem is absolutely beautiful. Great work. All the blog posts are very good and are nice to read.

  • Dear Annie,

    Thank you for sharing your feelings. I’m a friend of Cody’s grandma Joan. I was at the beautiful memorial and I still feel the grief shared by so many. I think of my beautiful 15 year old granddaughter and how tragic it would be to lose her. You are very precious to those who love you and people who don’t even know you. Please remember how much you are loved. Keep writing. I’m sure it helps. God be with you and your friends as you heal.

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