The CHOC WALK Experience

My dearest Jojo,

     Come close my sweet son, I have something to share with you. Let me be close to you…let me be close to you once more…breathe in your scent, hear the tenderness of your voice, feel the waves of your hair. Come…listen in for this story…and let me once again see the exuberance on your face and the light in your eyes. Come, my Jojo-Bean, a little bit closer, if for only a moment to brush against your pale, soft cheek. Your mama loves you…she has and will continue to love you deeply and profusely until, until…until eternity. Let me have this moment with you, every corner of my heart is present…let it be my honor to tell you this story…a story about you, my son…the little lover Jordan “Jojo” Kalua Cline.

On Sunday, August 11, at 3:00am, long before the sun shone bright; the world, the people, a community stirred and yawned and dressed in green, baring reflections of turtles and truth. A community convened as strangers, family, and friends…banding together to make a proclamation. A proclamation that the Cline Family will not have to do this alone, that Jojo’s brothers will not be reduced and hidden in tragedy, that Jojo’s story will not fade into the darkness of the night, that the legacy of this young life will not lie dormant today. The show of support and presence is overwhelming, speaking volumes…”The impact Jojo had on my life will not end with me.”

Oh my sweet son, your people were there…with stories of karaoke and memorable Jojo hugs…and smiles and tears and wrists glowing green and a skyline decorated in black turtles soaring over on white balloons. It is beyond amazing to see nearly 2 0 0 people gather and create Team Live Like Jojo. They gathered to see, hear, and share your story. Some were personally touched by you during your seven years, others in the past 18 months have been drawn in by your unfolding and evolving story.  

This walk for CHOC hospital was not limited in location, remote walkers in Washington and Nebraska, passionately supported and loved on us from afar. 

As unbelievably early as it was, Team Live Like Jojo was united and ready to march. A perceptible energy filled the air…inspiration, celebration….and heartache. We miss you Jojo-Bean. YOU gifted hearts with an encircling of love and acceptance…these people have not forgotten you, they truly do remember.

Darkness turned to dawn that morning, a gorgeous golden hue fell upon all of us. Your three brothers were front and center, bearing and sharing the responsibility of carrying a banner of you, displaying seven moments of your SEVEN years. Each and every day your brothers must close the day without you, the finishing of these days are so incredibly hard. This walk, this gathering of people is their greatest “Jojo moment” of the year! It is like Christmas morning…THIS IS THE DAY they await all year long. Jojo, you can’t even believe the dedication your brothers put forward for this walk. They plan on it, reminisce about it, and share about it… ALL YEAR LONG. You would be so proud of them and they are so very proud of you; who you were, are, and the pieces of your story that continue to live on.

Dawn turned into sunrise, it was time to walk…whether smiling or somnolent, the collective expression was clear, “This one is for Jojo: he is my brother, my friend, my patient, my nephew, my grandson, my cousin, my neighbor, and MY son.”

The minutes of waiting, suspended in anxiety and anticipation, slowly passed by. Sunrise turned into daylight, rows and rows of Team Live Like Jojo could be seen, a bright green mob standing tall and determined. Introductions had been made, hugs exchanged, stories shared…it was time for this brigade to move on up. Jojo, your friends showed up my sweet son! Judah, Hayden, Chase, Kaden, and Sebastian, Baron, Deakon, Pierce, Macy, and “T-yana”, River, Reed, Beckett, Halle, Ella, Sienna, Noah, Caleb, Micah, Colin, and so many more. The people carried poster boards displaying photos and sweet words about you. Turtle tattooed arms and faces beaming with pride and conviction…they were marching for you Jojo! 

Three meandering miles…looking around us were many other stories and teams to feel compassion for and to draw strength from. It is impossible to fully describe this experience or the expression of love that took place that morning, it was incredibly powerful and it is MY PRIVILEGE to call you my son.

Now my sweet, take this with you…wrap this story, tuck it gently into your heart, steep in it, savor it…how grateful am I for you my precious son…I don’t want our time to end…my heart begins to shutter…it is time to say goodbye my sweet…I cannot possibly let go…please, please don’t go…oh no…I must calm my breath and close in my soul…and so it must be…my stomach turns, my heart pulsing…I MUST open my eyes to see once again, our meeting was but a dream…a precious dream I will tuck gently into my heart…until we meet again, I love you my dearest Jojo.♥️

#livelikejojo #onemoremoment #chocwalk2019