Friday, January 7, 2011

Victim's Impact Statement (part 1)

On January 6, 2011, I stood up with Dominic by my side to read my impact statement to the judge. I split my speech into two parts. The first part focused mainly on Trevor and the second part focused more on our pain as parents. The words weren't hard to write, as they came from my heart, but reading them in front of the judge, in front of Trevor's murderer and her family was extremely difficult. Not to sound cliche, but I felt Trevor with me. I felt him in my heart and soul as I read.

After the hearing, a lady asked if I would post my speech on my blog. So here is part 1, about Trevor. I can't take credit for this whole speech. My dear friend Kelly wrote some of it when she spoke at Trevor's memorial service. She did such an amazing job that I borrowed some of her words and some of my own to give "life" to my precious baby boy.

Trevor James Ulrich was loved and adored from the first moment we knew he was going to be our precious baby. He was our pride and joy, our miracle baby. Before he appeared to the rest of the world, he had forever changed our lives, blessing us with a love that is inexplicable, a love so true and pure that it defies all rules and reason, a love that is unconditional and eternal.

Trevor came earlier than anticipated. I guess he was just so ready to meet us. He was a fighter though and he worked hard to achieve all of the requirements necessary for him to leave the NICU. He came home 4 weeks before his due date, and in time for Christmas with his family. Trevor was our extraordinary Christmas gift.

Not only was he a gift but he was also gifted. Trevor had the innate ability to melt hearts and was known to touch even those who usually pride themselves at being “tough.” It took only a look with his big, beautiful, blue eyes, his cherub-like cheeks, and his sweet, sweet smile. If you were lucky enough to hear his giggle, then for a brief time you encountered the pure and sacred sound of happiness, for you see- Trevor only knew “Happy.” He didn’t know hatred, war, or poverty… his life was comprised of joy and delight, warmth and love.

Dominic and I were lucky enough to know Trevor the best. We knew his likes and dislikes. We knew his favorite foods. We knew what his cries meant. We knew how to comfort him, make him laugh and smile. We knew his favorite toys and his daily routines. We also knew how lucky we were to be his parents. Trevor was easy going, always happy, and eager to explore the world around him.

We celebrated each milestone Trevor hit- rolling over, crawling, saying “Da Da” and yes, even pulling up. He was full of life and sunshine, in a picture shortly after he had mastered pulling up in his crib. He stood proudly wearing a sheepish grin while his delighted eyes glistened. He knew that he was just “too cute” and that we would be thrilled with his new found skill.

“Da Da” he said one day while mom and I were shopping. I quickly called Dominic so he could hear his sweet voice. Those words melted our hearts. Being bright, Trevor soon learned to turn this into a game as he coyly said “Hey Da Da” when I would prompt him to say MaMa. While Trevor didn’t have a lot of words yet, he spoke volumes with his eyes and with his smile. He loved his parents, his family, and life itself.

We stand before you today just as heartbroken as ever. We have a room full of his things, his toys, crib, books, and clothes. A room that we keep closed most of the time because it is too painful to walk past. I still walk in there and expect his head to pop up from his crib and smile at me. His pajamas that were supposed to be for Wednesday night, still hang on the side of his crib. His crib still contains his favorite toys, his frog, his Elmo book and his blanket dog. Everything is in its place as if it too is waiting for him to return.

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