If you want to understand, READ THIS

This morning I was doing a google search on Michaela. There are many web sleuthing pages out there that talk about Michaela, and there are so often things I would like to answer but can’t. But on one of those pages I came across this comment:

For whatever reason, the mom seems to think Michaela being a sex slave all of this time is preferable to her being dead. I totally get that she doesn’t want her daughter to be deceased and never see her again, but the thought of her being raped, sodomized, beaten, and whatever else for over twenty years would be horrible. I guess neither option would be a good one.

I think I have talked about this here and there on this blog. In fact, I think many of my posts kind of hint at this. But answers get lost in the proliferation of words, so I thought I would just lay it all out clearly at least for this moment in time.

First, do I positively believe Michaela is still alive? No, I don’t. I fully realize that the most probable scenario is that she died within a relatively short time of her kidnapping. Even more, there have been many times over the last 23 years that I have stated publicly, even to the media, that I thought that might even be the more preferable scenario, because it is absolutely true that I did not want to think of Michaela living a life of prolonged suffering. And yes, whether it be in someone’s back yard here in California or in the UAE or anywhere else, I do believe that she would have lived an absolutely miserable life of torture, suffering, grief and sadness. People talk about what I have had to live with for all this time, but hey, that is a walk in the park compared to what Michaela would have had to live with for all this time, if she lived. I am not stupid, and I am absolutely not delusional. While it is achingly difficult to imagine my daughter’s death, something I don’t ever want to contemplate, it is equally difficult to imagine her life after November 19, 1988.

If she died shortly after her kidnapping, she would have been at peace for the last 23 years. I don’t personally have any absolute beliefs about what happens after death. I do not believe in the traditional heaven and hell. I do tend towards the belief in the continuation of the spirit in one way or another. But at the worst, death is sleep and nothingness, and is this preferable to 23 years of torture and abuse?

What I do believe is that it is possible that Michaela is still alive. I feel as though I have said this a hundred times, including in fact in the blog I posted this morning, before I went on my google search. If Michaela is not alive, it doesn’t matter what I do, or say, or think. But if Michaela IS alive, it makes all the difference in the world. IF Michaela is alive, she has to know that she is still loved, still wanted, that we are still waiting for her to come home, that we have never ever given up on her. Therefore, this is the only assumption I can operate under. It’s like when your child has a fever … maybe it’s nothing, and you can sit home and watch TV … but maybe it’s something serious, and if it is, you need to take her to the doctor. So you go to the doctor, because you have to do what you have to do to assure the best for your child.

Does this make sense?

Awhile ago there was a lot of talk about Shermantine and the wells full of bones, and many people seemed to not like the fact that I said I didn’t think Michaela was a victim of the Shermantine and/or Herzog. I was accused of being delusional and many other things, but the fact was that I knew a lot of facts about both that lead and Michaela’s case which led to a pretty rational conclusion that Michaela was not part of this scenario. A lot of television reporters wanted me to buy into this lead as well, but I just didn’t in my heart or my very rational mind believe that. Just because it’s in the news, that doesn’t make it true. There are far more plausible scenarios in Michaela’s kidnapping, but you don’t know about them because they haven’t been on the news.

After Jaycee was found, my hopes that Michaela might be alive rose tremendously. Yes, Jaycee went through a lot, but look at her! Look at Elizabeth Smart, or Shawn Hornbeck. Would any one of them rather be dead than where they are today? OF COURSE NOT! I knew Jaycee had been found. I knew her mother had been told, that she was brought here to be reunited with her daughter. And yes, you’d better believe I wanted that for Michaela and for myself. I can’t even begin to describe the feelings I experienced during that time. Our police department did a thorough investigation of Garrido and as part of that investigation they searched for bodies buried on his property. I was there at the property while they were doing that search, and when they didn’t find anything I didn’t feel disappointed that I didn’t get a resolution. I felt pure, unadulterated relief.

In the years since then, I have had to question whether I am actually prepared to hear the news that Michaela is not alive. I will admit that. But I know now that if this is the truth, I do want to know it. After all, the truth is the truth, and my ignorance of it doesn’t make it any less true. Whatever else it would or would not bring, it would end at least some of the forms of torture I experience at the hands of those few people in the world who want to beat me up either because of my hopes and fears about my daughter.

So if you happen to be someone who knows what happened to Michaela, tell me please. If Michaela could endure it, so can I. Leave an anonymous comment on this blog, or e-mail me at sharon.murch@gmail.com. But please leave enough information to actually bring a resolution, and not just a teaser.

And Michaela, if you are alive, and you are reading this … well, you can end the torture yourself by at least telling me that you are alive, and whether you are well or not. You too can leave an anonymous comment on this blog. Just let me know you are you by including a piece of personal family information that nobody else would know.

Whether you are alive, or whether you are not, whether you come home or never do, Michaela, I love you forever, and forever.


39 thoughts on “If you want to understand, READ THIS

Add yours

  1. I also have done many google searches on Michaela.The first time I did was when Shawn Hornbeck saw found,That time I came across a coment I think about often and have tried to reserch online to see if it was true(never had any luck).It said that a boy named tony was rescued from a sex ring and later wrote a letter to americas most wanted saying he knew michaela,and the same people who had him had her.Is this true?I have always wondered.~s


  2. There was a schizophrenic young man who claimed to have been part of a sex ring, and claimed to have helped kidnap another boy, and said that a man named Tony was the getaway driver and used a composite created for Michaela's case to identify this Tony, and did so on America's Most Wanted without even speaking to us about it or telling them where the composite came from. I personally met with the private investigator working on that case and he said that he knew nothing about any little girls, that this was supposed to be just boys, and specifically there was no mention of Michaela. But honestly, there has been so much disinformation connected with that lead that don't place any credence in it.


  3. My heart breaks for you every day and for Michaela — just know people you have never met are praying and thinking about you every day !!! BPayne


  4. I know I say this all the time, but Michaela's case really breaks my heart.. Whenever I first heard about this case was when Jaycee was found, and I had hope that Michaela may be found shortly after. When I saw you speaking about Michaela on Oprah, it really hurt me to see you suffer, what kind of awful man would ever do such a thing to an innocent nine year old?! I still believe she may be found some day. An answer, alive or not, would really end everyones suffering.


  5. I have to stop reading these everytime I do I start to bawl. I cannot imagine the pain you go through in your darkest hours. The ever knowing what happened to yourlittlegirl. If she is out there I hope she is in a great place and her life is great and if she is not alive bite she is waiting to see you again wherever that may be.


  6. Sharon – Your writing's wonderful. I'm 31, and I always remember learning about Michaela's case on Unsolved Mysteries when I was about 10. I'm sure she'll come home very soon. I wish the best for you and your family. Take care.- Matt


  7. I hope Michaela is found very soon. It breaks my heart to imagine your pain. Nobody should have to go through this. Best wishes.


  8. I hope michaela will come home sooner or later. I have high hopes for her. She's such a beautiful girl I hope a new clue in this case comes up soon. -Raquel


  9. Lupe-Umm yes it is a possibility that she is still alive out there. Have you ever heard of the long-term missing children who have been found alive? If all you have to say is negative comments for a positive, strong mother, then you shouldn't be commenting at all!To Sharon, Don't listen to what Lupe has to say. It is not worth it 🙂


  10. Whose to say she isn't alive??? She very well could be anywhere in the world right now eating dinner or god knows what maybe things happened to her that we're so evil she just thinks it better to stay wherever she is. She could be alive and until they have a body why should Sharon give up completely???


  11. And to everyone else, thank you for your defense and your support, but I'm not going to let this get into one of those things with lots of name calling back and forth. I think this comment by Lupe #1 was phrased badly, but I did say in this very post that I thought there was a good possibility that Michaela is not alive, but that if there is any possibility that she is alive, it is really important that we act based on that assumption and not give up on her. If anything, it's just frustrating that people comment on the blog apparently without reading it first. There is a lot of time and feeling that goes into these words, you know. It's not a picture book.


  12. Hi Sharon,Thanks for sharing again with all of us. I love to read what you have to say.These people that make these stupid, rude and dumb comments on this site and other sites need to be quiet. Until they've walked in your shoes all these many years without your daughter, and felt all you've gone through, they need to be quiet and not say anything unless it's positive and uplifting to you and your family! I don't understand people like that!Like I've always said I have Faith and Hope that Michaela will be found. I will never loose hope for her and all of your family. Love and Prayers alwaysfrom Thelma Mandera & family


  13. How is it with me never even knowing her that one can feel a string connection to her? We are the same age so I would think up until 9 years old we could have had a lot of the same interest and things like that. Michaela makes me remember my childhood and I hate so much how hers was taken away it makes me so angry that this happened to her it is not fair at all! I cannot wait for the day they find her if I was able to help I would but I am too far. I just you to get your daughter back no one had the right to take her from such a loving home life. If for whatever weird reason heaven does exist and I get there before my time I will see if she is there and If she is I will tell her you never gave up and we will try to let you know where she is. Yeah it's a little strange I guess but who knows. I read these nightly and always end up crying in my bed wondering about her. She seemed like an awesome person.


  14. I see the comments when they are published, because I have to approve them. I often do it from my phone, or at work, and can't always answer immediately, but if it's quick and I'm on a computer and not my phone, I do try to!Thanks, Jose.


  15. Has anyone tried going to any car dumps looking for the car? It's an old car so it would stand out. If I lived there I would help out. Yes even after all these years.


  16. Sharon,I love your strength and courage that you've put up for 20 years. I was abducted as a child, and I know there is still hope for your daughter.-Rubye


  17. Hello Sharon,I just recently found out about this case, and my heart hurts so much for you and Michaela. I have two little ones, and it puts knots in my stomach imagining the torment of not knowing whatever happened to your child. I have to commend you for your ability to stay strong for the rest of your family and keep moving in life while never giving up on Michaela. As a mother, I completely understand your reasons for always reaching out to her, just in case she happens to see what you're writing. I would never give up on my child, not in a million years!! I also commend you for taking any negative comments with a grain of salt. They have no idea what it does to your heart and soul to be a mother. I wish so much that I could find her for you!! Sometimes I find myself searching people's faces just to see if I happen to recognize her from the young pictures, which is so silly because I'm so far from where you are. But I guess I can't help it….I'm a mom, and my heart goes out to you so much. All I can do is pray that they will finally knock on your door with some answers, and I will be doing that every day from now on. Thanks for sharing all of your thoughts with us!!- Becki


  18. Thanks Becki. And the world is a small place these days. You never know where someone might be. But what would they look like? That's the hard part. I wouldn't have recognized Jaycee as being Jaycee. I wouldn't have recognized the adult Steven Stayner as being the same person as the child who was kidnapped. I don't even think the age progressions are really accurate either. That's why I write here, and why I write to Michaela, because I know that if she is still alive the only way she is going to be found is if either she or someone who knows who she is can be motivated to contact us.


  19. Hi sharon. Sorry this might be a silly quetion but just out of curiosity I was wondering. You mentioned in one of your blogs that the scooter that michaela went to go pick up was not the one that she rode to the store but when you read about michaela on wikipedia it says that “they notice “michaela's scooter missing”. Or were both the scooters hers?


  20. Neither of the scooters belonged to Michaela. They both belonged to her friend's family. But it wasn't the one she'd ridden that was moved. It's not really a significant mistake for a website for the general public. I think I even have used those words. It is significant in the fact that it shows Michaela wasn't specifically targeted. Somebody didn't follow her from the house and set a trap specifically for her.


  21. Hi Sharon, I so hope you find your beautiful daughter Michaela soon. It breaks my heart to read your writings but you are so strong to be able to keep writing. I hope you don't let these ignorant negative people ever get you down. I know you are probably used to it but it makes me so angry that people could be so cruel and insensitive. It's entirely possible that Michaela is still alive. I remember when she was kidnapped, it made me scared to leave my mothers side. Someone out there knows something and the more her name gets out there,maybe someone will finally come forward and give you the answers you need.To Michaela: if you are out there please contact your mother. You have to know that none of this was your fault. You were an innocent child which happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. I don't know your mother personally but from reading her blog it is blindingly obvious how much she loves you. None of this was your fault, there would be nothing for you to be ashamed of. I know you would be welcomed home with open arms and no matter what trauma you may have endured, your mother could not stop loving you EVER. So please if there is any way for you to get in touch with her please do it. The world would be so happy to see you come home.Sharon – I pray for you and Michaela daily. Anyone would be blessed to have such a devoted mother.


  22. The car found in Phillip Garrido's backyard is a 1984 or 1985 Ford LTD LX. According to Michaela's friend it matches the description. So it could also be a 1983-1986 Ford Ltd, 1983-1986, 1982-1987 Lincoln Continental or a 1981 or 1982 Ford Granada. Hope you ind this helpful.Lori


  23. Sharon, I come from the forum that this post was on, and I just want to say I completely understand what you are saying. I don't think you need to justify your hopes for anyone, but it totally makes sense the way you describe it. I remember when your daughter went missing (I was 15) and I always prayed she would be found safe, and I still pray for that for you. At any rate, I hope you are able to get answers some day and that something will bring you even a little bit of peace you deserve. All my best…


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