Granger Smith’s Wife, Amber, Reflects On Their Most Challenging Year Following Loss of 3-Year-Old Son

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Granger Smith and wife Amber share loss of son River in 2019
Photo by Arroyo-OConnor/AFF-USA.com

The turning of the calendar page on a new year causes most people to pause and reflect on the twelve months prior. For Granger Smith, his wife, Amber, and their family, 2019 marks a year of great pain and loss, but also profound faith after their youngest son, River, died in a tragic drowning accident at their home in June.

Amber has shared some of those healing and inspiring thoughts on Instagram and, in a way, they provide a source of healing for others who may have suffered loss or trauma in 2019.

[RELATED: Granger Smith’s Wife Amber Speaks Out About Son’s Drowning Accident]

In a New Year’s Eve post, she called 2019, “The year that brought me to my knees.” Amber went on to explain, "The year our beautiful red-headed boy turned 3 & went Home. The year that same sweet boy saved 2 other lives. The year that broke my heart into pieces but also tempered my spirit.”

The mother of three didn’t forget her other two children in her stirring post, remarking, “The year Linc turned 5 and started kinder and London started 2nd grade. The year that I became the closest to God I’ve ever been. The year I cried every day for 6 months straight. The year London lost 3 teeth and turned 8.”

Amber then reflected on how they turned their pain into purpose. “The year we ministered to hundreds about grief and hope,” she writes. “The year we vowed to not let anything tear our family apart. The year we promised to find meaning and not reasons. The year Granger and I became closer than ever before. The year my eyes were truly opened to what is important. The year we’ve never felt more love from our community. The year I found out that joy and grief can coexist. The year we dove back into the fire to help other grieving parents. The year that changed me. The year of the blue butterfly. The year I learned that I am not in control. The year that solidified that I can’t live this life without God.”

But Amber didn’t just consider the past in her post. She also contemplated the future with great hope. She writes, “My goals for the coming year are to grow the @theriverkellyfund and help as many people as we can, keep London and Lincoln thriving despite the heartache of the past year, grow in grace and faith with my Maker, share our story in the hopes of helping others, and be in the present moment, because as much as we want to plan and dream, today is all we have. This moment. Each day, whether good or bad, is another gift from God. I hope to live it with gratitude and compassion for others. I hope to continue to surrender my battles, because in my weakness He is my strength. I hope to forgive myself little by little. I hope to keep bringing people to the Kingdom and sharing the love of God that I have felt so strongly.”

[RELATED: Granger Smith’s Late Son River Saves Two Lives With Donated Organs]

Her final words in the post were of encouragement and gratitude: “Know that as you head into a new decade, you are loved, you have purpose, you are  stronger than you think, and you are never alone. Thank you for following along with us on this journey, for supporting our family, Granger’s music and our healing. We really do appreciate all of your stories, messages, letters and prayers.”

Amber’s post was so remarkable that even Granger had to comment. “Gosh. You and your words… You’ve found your voice,” he wrote.

Indeed she has.

View this post on Instagram

2019 – The year that brought me to my knees. The year our beautiful red-headed boy turned 3 & went Home. The year that same sweet boy saved 2 other lives. The year that broke my heart into pieces but also tempered my spirit. The year we started The Smiths. The year we moved from our home and all the memories we made there. The year Linc turned 5 and started kinder and London started 2nd grade. The year that I became the closest to God I’ve ever been. The year I cried every day for 6 months straight. The year London lost 3 teeth and turned 8. The year we ministered to hundreds about grief and hope. The year we vowed to not let anything tear our family apart. The year we promised to find meaning and not reasons. The year Granger and I became closer than ever before. The year my eyes were truly opened to what is important. The year we’ve never felt more love from our community. The year I found out that joy and grief can coexist. The year we dove back into the fire to help other grieving parents. The year that changed me. The year of the blue butterfly. The year I learned that I am not in control. The year that solidified that I can’t live this life without God. I can’t believe it’s been almost 7 months since we held our sweet Riv and that we will be starting a new year without him physically with us. Through this sadness, I’m hopeful for all that is to come. My goals for the coming year are to grow the @theriverkellyfund and help as many people as we can, keep London and Lincoln thriving despite the heartache of the past year, grow in grace and faith with my Maker, share our story in the hopes of helping others, and be in the present moment, because as much as we want to plan and dream, today is all we have. This moment. Each day, whether good or bad, is another gift from God. I hope to live it with gratitude and compassion for others. I hope to continue to surrender my battles, because in my weakness He is my strength. I hope to forgive myself little by little. I hope to keep bringing people to the Kingdom and sharing the love of God that I have felt so strongly. (Continued in comments)

A post shared by Amber Smith (@amberemilysmith) on