Jared and Sharry Buhanan-Decker weren’t only husband and wife, they were best friends. So imagine Jared’s heartbreak when Sharry unexpectedly passed away while giving birth to their first child, JJ, after an emergency C-section. “I was supposed to be the happiest day of my life,” said the devastated new father. But, despite the great tragedy of his beloved wife’s passing, Jared found comfort in the most unlikely place… Reddit!
After returning home with baby JJ, Jared found files on his computer containing recordings of Sharry singing. Sharry had a great love of music, and the amateur singer-songwriter had recorded some new songs that Jared was eager to hear; the only trouble was, Jared wasn’t sure how to access the files. “I saw these songs that were in a file that I didn’t have the program or the skills to convert and so I turned to Reddit.”
Jared posted on the site asking if anyone could lend a hand: “Odd request for help. My wife recently died during childbirth and I need help with some of her recordings…I just want to be able to hear her voice again. Thank you.”
He was quickly overwhelmed by responses! “I was looking for one or two people to help,” said Jared, “but dozens responded very quickly and hundreds sent me messages on the post or through inbox.” Some users even worked to improve the quality of Sharry’s recordings so that Jared and JJ could better enjoy her music.
“They’re like lullabies to me and JJ,” said Jared of his late wife’s songs.
One of Sharry’s songs is called “Baby Don’t Worry.” The message brings comfort in a time of mourning: “”It’s like she’s telling me and JJ right now, to not worry and that it’ll be alright and we need to have that faith and hope,” he said.
Further comfort has been found in an old post Sharry wrote for the couple’s blog. A year and a half ago, Sharry wrote a blog entry in which she answered 5 thought-provoking questions. One of those questions was “If you were going to die one year from today, what would you and and how would you want to be remembered?” This is an excerpt from her response:
The first thing I would do is treasure my loved ones and tell them how much I care and how sorry I will be to miss spending time with them– to miss meeting their future babies, to miss seeing their successes, to miss eating a piece of pie with them on Thanksgiving Day.
My second thought would be to notice the amazing beauty in our daily lives… Somehow, a realization of death brings an awareness of life. And I would like to soak all of those senses into my skin until I can no longer feel anything, and my cells have turned cold.
And finally, I would like to experience as much of life as I could squeeze into one final year, and one final day. To spend more time writing, and reading, and painting, and learning, and travelling, and singing, and dancing.