Mitchell's Journey Videos
As Mitchell's health began to decline, his father began creating personal videos of their experience. He would then post those short videos on Facebook as a means of sharing their family's journey, along with the thoughts and emotions with each downward milestone. To him, it was cathartic and a non-intrusive way of sharing with those who wanted to know what was happening.
Lights Will Guide You Home
This video was posted days after Mitchell's passing that was a reflection of their longing for Mitch and the way their lives had changed.
This video was made the summer after Mitchell's passing and includes photos and video from people across the world who were moved by Mitchell's life and death.
The Greater Symphony
Mitchell's Last Days
Meditations on Grief
In this short video essay, Chris explores grief rituals and the role they play in those who suffer loss to death. It is a meditation on what such rituals do to ease our minds and hearts. This video was shot and edited from a cell phone and is a bit shaky, but the point is what mattered.
Travel well explores a tender moment where little Mitch couldn't concentrate on building Lego's ... something he did with great ease before his heart failed. Because of low profusion, Mitch had difficulty performing the most simple of tasks. Travel well explores the thoughts and feelings of one who is left behind and the importance of grieving in a healthy and productive manner.
Wastelands is an explorations on the aftermath of grief. Everything is uʍop ǝpᴉsdn
May Our Memories Keep Us
This video was given to Natalie on Mother's day and encapsulated some of their more tender moments with Mitch when he was living.
This short video contains a conversation between Mitch and his father, wherein Mitch says, "Dad, will you tuck me in?"
Little Moments, Big Memories
It’s funny the things we take for granted; the simplest moments back then have turned out to be my most treasured memories. For Mitch life was more difficult as compared to the average child. Walking was a burden made more difficult each year, as his muscles grew weaker.
Mitch loved life and was eager to explore the world, but for him a staircase may as well have been Mt Everest.
I am fascinated how the seemingly ordinary and mundane footage I took (almost without a moments thought) is so precious today: every image, every audio clip, every snip-it of video.
My memories of my son are without price. It feels like yesterday, but also a world away.
Simple Moments Matter
A short Instagram clip of Mitch riding 4-wheelers.
Not So Ordinary Moments
You never really know how valuable photos and video can be until the people you love are no longer with us. This was a short meditation on the value of memories.
A video chronicle of his first encounter with Mitchell's new puppy Marlie. This little dog would soon become a profound tender mercy during Mitchell's final moments.
While waiting for my plane on a recent return trip home, my kids left me some sweet messages on my phone. I decided to record the takeoff so they could see what I saw. This is a crude mash up of those two nearly simultaneous events.
Side note: with all of today’s modern marvels it’s ironic that microwaves don’t seem to cook fast enough. Despite their vast computational abilities, computers are always too slow. And no matter how incredible it is that humans can fly over 30,000 feet in the air, at speeds over 550 MPH . . . sometimes your flight home seems to last an eternity - especially when you have little ones you can’t wait to hug and to hold.
At any rate, if you’re the type that likes to look out the window during take-off, you may enjoy this. If you’re not, move along: it's a little bumpy and this will bore you to death.
Into The Abyss
A candid look at Mitchell's final days. This video depicts the fear we felt when facing the abyss of death.
Less than two months after Mitch was denied a heart transplant [see video No Exit] we discovered his heart function declined significantly. His ejection fraction was 5%. Therapies failed him.
Facing the Abyss
An appointment with our cardiologist in October 2012 where we learned Mitchell's heart was failing at a rapid rate. It was believed aggressive medicines would slow the deterioration of his heart muscle. We were warned he was at risk of sudden death.
The ravages of heart failure are starting to take grasp of our little boy with alarming speed and intensity.
When Mitchell's doctor denied our petition for a heart transplant. Citing antiquated policies governing transplant candidacy, Mitch faced certain death, although a heart transplant would have given him at least 10 years. There was no exit.
A Broken Heart
This video was made the Spring of 2012, immediately after we learned Mitchell's heart was in jeopardy. At the time, we had no idea how quickly his heart would deteriorate. In less than a year, he would die of heart failure.
A Message of Thanks
This was a message we posted to supporters of Mitch. We couldn't imagine that by the end of the month, little Mitch was admitted to the emergency room for end-stage heart failure.
The Spark Continues
On our second annual Miles for Mitchell 5K, we made this video to signify the ongoing impact little Mitch has had in the lives of others across the globe.
The Last Goodbye
Upon hearing Mitchell's prognosis, and being sent home from the hospital to die, his elementary school gathered together and made him a special video to cheer him up. As we watched the video as a family I grabbed my camera to film Mitchell's reaction as he listened to loving comments of hope and encouragement from those he knew and loved.
What you see here is a side-by-side of the video given to him and my video of his reaction to it. I was sure to time the videos exactly so you can see his tender response throughout.
At ~1:06 Mitchell's teacher wished him well, then the camera cuts to his class who cheer for him. Mitch smiles on the inside and out. Mitch loved his teacher and she cared deeply about him. I have more to share about her in the months ahead.
At ~4:50 Mitch sees his former elementary school principle, Mrs Davis, offer encouragement and love. She is every bit as genuine and loving in real life as she is in this video - in fact, even more so. Mitch started to cry and then I started to cry. I couldn't help it. What you then see is a tender exchange between my son and I and the loving words of his former principle.
I haven't watched this video for at least a year and a half. Today I thought I was ready to see it again. I did not expect the torrent of tears that would flow watching it again.
There was so much love and kindness offered to Mitch by all of the remarkable school staff, volunteers and classmates. We are eternally grateful to those who reached out in love to calm his trembling heart.
Mitch watched this video Monday, February 25, 2013. He died Friday night.