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I finally slept well the last two nights. I wake a little bit, but it’s nothing like the fear and the sadness that I’ve been dealing with the last three months. In fact, it will be three months tomorrow that my nephew is gone.

Last night I got in my car to go take one of my kids somewhere, and the radio station was changed again. The Sam Smith song came on, and I got it…okay Matt. You changed my station again and I’m hearing the song again. My sister Laura put this song in the video for the funeral, and I had never heard it before that day. I hear it all the time now. When I get back in my car later that evening and am driving home, that song is on again. Now, I guess I could say it’s a super popular song and it probably means nothing. Maybe.

I had a few times during the night where I sort of felt warm. Is this menopause I ask myself? Or is it simply that I’m being connected. I get in my car this morning to leave, and I turn on the car radio and again. Stay with me. Will you stay with me? I never knew who Sam Smith was before, but he’s becoming a really good friend of mine.

And suddenly just as I pulled out of my driveway, I had this sense that Matt was there. On my roof or in my trees or something. And he was protecting my children. He gave me like this look that said, “I got it Aunt Linda. I’ll take it from here.”

The sense that Matt was protecting my children came over me like a wash of warm water and I felt in the stream. I felt connected, and I felt at peace.

Tonight, in Dodger Stadium, Clayton Kershaw pitches. If we win tonight, we clinch the division. I think maybe it would be appropriate, since the last conversation I had with Matt was when he texted me about Kershaw’s no-hitter back in June. Six days before he died, my nephew started texting me at 6AM, the day after that game. And he told me that I didn’t believe. He called me a bandwagon aunt because I was starting to believe that our season was over. He told me that I had to believe that they were going to go all the way, and I didn’t. We had just come off a hard early June, and I was thinking that the hated ones would be in first place all the way. And Matt just laughed. He said that he knew they were going all the way to the World Series. And then he died.

It’s maybe one of the most important games of the season for me, and I would give anything to be there.

So. Is it just because Stay With Me is a popular song? Is it just because maybe there was an accident and somebody changed my car channel (for the second time) to this hip-hop dance music that Matt loved? Is it a coincidence that Clayton Kershaw is pitching tonight, almost 3 months to the day of his no-hitter?

Is it a coincidence? Or is it absolutely Matt’s protection?

Tomorrow, it will be three months since my nephew has died. There is definitely a hole in my family, and as my young son said last night, “because we don’t live in LA with the rest of the family it’s sort of like not real.”

So I imagine Matt taking care of my kids, watching over them, treating them like little brothers …just like he did in 2002 when he lived with us. I have never felt such peace. I imagine him with a front row seat tonight in Dodger Stadium watching Kershaw clinch our division. And I imagine him saying “See Aunt Linda? I told you.”

Grief is a constant, and yet today I feel his love.

The last words I said when I spoke at his funeral were “Go Dodgers”. I’d like to think he would approve.

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