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A Note from Janice Harvey

Jason asked that I post a note that was emailed to him by Janice Harvey, Ken's wife. As you know, the three-month-old son of Bucs kicker Matt Bryant died suddenly last week and Janice wanted to share the story of the son she and Ken lost to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome:

Pain comes in many forms and through many resources. There is the physical pain of playing football and the abuse it takes on your body or the pain of cancer or disease as it eats away at the temple we call flesh. There is also an emotional pain which is unseen but can do a far greater damage than the physical pain previously mentioned. This type of pain digs deep into your soul and seeks to destroy the very essence of who you are, it claws at you daily, making you wish you could somehow scream out to the world for relief but, in the end, it is in the gentleness of healing that you find your way through.

No greater pain could be endured than a parent losing their child. Ken and I lost our child Nathaniel Ray Harvey, after only 3 months of life to SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) and at the time, the pain we felt seemed more than we could bear. I dealt with a tidal wave of emotions trying to understand, and asking God why me? What did I do wrong? What could I have done differently? Ken carried his pain inside trying to manage it and control it the same way he endured the physical pain while playing professional football. Like his game, the only way to "beat the pain" for him was to face it head on, fight and continue. Because of that tragedy, we understand where Matt and Melissa are right now. What they must be going through with the loss of their son. Like the silent nod of a veteran who has been through a war, Ken understood Matt's decision to play in the game the day after his son's funeral because for some, the best way to endure the constant grip of agony and sorrow is to keep busy. Immerse yourself in work and to fight against the constant bereavement of being "on display" or being judge by voice's of society standards.

I also understand the emptiness and sadness associated with the loss of a child. Empty cries go unheard, the future memories of a scrapbook that will never be fulfilled. My heart was heavy for Melissa because I know that few words will comfort her, but if I can offer her anything in this time of pain, it would be a sliver of light, of wisdom that awaits at the end of the tunnel. That wisdom is there's hope! There is a tomorrow! You will never forget but the pain, but with time, it will lessen. For those like Matt (and Ken) who get to share their tragedy with the masses of the sports world, there are many more obscurely walking in the season of burying their child, alone. To those I say, talk to your spouse, family members, and friends. And for others, when they come to you just be available and most importantly, understand that people grieve differently. In our society grieving often gets pushed out of the way for a "quick fix" but Matt, Melissa remember, it is ok to grieve and that you are on no ones time table. Grieve as long as needed but, in the end know that you are loved by God and that somewhere out there, there are those of us who understand and join together to lift you up in our thoughts and prayers.

This article is also in memory of you, Joe Bugel, who recently lost his daughter to cancer.

By Cindy Boren  |  September 30, 2008; 1:00 PM ET
 
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Comments

Can we do the right thing and NOT talk about football in this post? Lets respect the topic at hand.

Posted by: Rypien11 | September 30, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

did matt bryant's kid die from SID as well?

Posted by: dealer1 | September 30, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Here's to a kinder and gentler blog amongst fellow Redskin fans. The loss of a child transcends football and political agendas.

My thoughts and prayers go out to any parent who has lost a child. We are thinking of you too at this time, Pedro Taylor.

Posted by: SirAnonymoustheGreat | September 30, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Can we do the right thing and NOT talk about football in this post? Lets respect the topic at hand.

Posted by: Rypien11 | September 30, 2008 1:06 PM

Sorry but I do not want to talk about children dying, this is a Redskin blog and we talk Skins and Jibba-Jabba.

My heart goes out to any family that has ever had to bury a child, and I know if anything ever happend to one of my children I would never recover, but a Redskin blog is not the best arena to discuss this.

Posted by: Flounder21 | September 30, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

yeah...just read the last line...buges hasn't been buges on the sidelines this year...it's so sad to see him like that and i'm so happy for him aswell that his line (his work) is on display for everyone to appreciate. it must be so tough for him to do what he's doing.

Posted by: dealer1 | September 30, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Very, very sad story...

I think we should keep the football talk and jibba jabba on the last thread and then leapfrog to a new thread whenever it comes... respect...

Posted by: NateinthePDX | September 30, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Sorry but I do not want to talk about children dying, this is a Redskin blog and we talk Skins and Jibba-Jabba.

My heart goes out to any family that has ever had to bury a child, and I know if anything ever happend to one of my children I would never recover, but a Redskin blog is not the best arena to discuss this.

Posted by: Flounder21 | September 30, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Grow up.

Posted by: Rypien11 | September 30, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Prayers for the families who have lost their loved ones...

Peace.

Posted by: Stumped1 | September 30, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Prayers to the family.

Posted by: grittar1 | September 30, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

So sad.....prayers go out to the family....

Posted by: Lisa_R | September 30, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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