Vanessa Bryant posted on Instagram for the first time since her husband, Kobe, and 13-year-old daughter, Gianna died Sunday in a helicopter crash. The post is a photo of the whole family together and features a gut-wrenching caption that evokes a combination of grief, strength and love.
That caption, which can be read in full on Instagram, in part reads:
There aren't enough words to describe our pain right now. I take comfort in knowing that Kobe and Gigi both knew that they were so deeply loved. We were so incredibly blessed to have them in our lives. I wish they were here with us forever. They were our beautiful blessings taken from us too soon.
I'm not sure what our lives hold beyond today, and it's impossible to imagine life without them. But we wake up each day, trying to keep pushing because Kobe, and our baby girl, Gigi, are shining on us to light the way. Our love for them is endless — and that's to say, immeasurable. I just wish I could hug them, kiss them and bless them. Have them here with us, forever.
Bryant initially broke her social media silence on Wednesday when she changed her profile picture on Instagram to a photo of Kobe and Gianna embracing from 2016--the same year that Kobe retired from the NBA. Vanessa unlocked her account and opened up comments for her most recent post, though comments on the rest of her page remain disabled.
Kobe, Gianna, and seven others lost their lives on Sunday when their helicopter crashed into a hillside in Calabasas, California. The group was on their way to a basketball tournament at the Mamba Academy in Thousand Oaks.
There has been an outpouring of love and support from basketball fans all over the world. In addition, people have been flocking to the Staples Center to pay their respects to the star guard that spent his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Lakers have yet to return to the court since Bryant's death. They were supposed to face the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday evening, but the game was postponed due to the circumstances. The Lakers will host the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday.