weight

This morning I did not want to get out of bed…I felt too heavy to move.

I am lucky. Tony got up with the kids and let me lay in bed a bit longer. I think I might have stayed in bed all day..but we had art therepy coming over for our boys. Currently its mostly useful for JonathanDSC_0793 I think…but it helps him to have Nicholas involved…he opens up to strangers faster. I also think long term it will be good for Nicholas to look back and see he was involved and talk about what he did and help him make up memories.

CSC_0439He is 2. I know he wont have memories of his own. But my hope is with the conversations we have about her…the pictures and videos…our memories will become his. Like the first time she held him. She knew exactly how to do it and taught Jonathan.

Jonathan was difficult from the start this morning. And Tony woke up hurting too…not the best combo. We watched her slideshow last night. And cried…and remembered and longed for her. It wasn’t fun…but it was right for us to not just keep waiting on it. We needed to have that time…probably a few more times before watching with the kids. My hope is we watch it over and over again for the rest of our lives.

IMG_3971I got up around 9 before the art therapy ladies got here. I am so glad I was up for it. Just to watch them create and listen to them talk. They glued shells and marbles and cut out pictures of memories and significant things to them, with sissy. I hope they let me hang them in the playroom so we can see them all the time.

The best part of the pictures Jonathan put up in the boys room is the one he put on the floor. Its IMG_3912leaning up against the wall right when you walk in on the floor. He is very particular about it and that its in the exact right spot. Its like she greets us when we walk in there.

 

Since today was total sad day for me and Tony we had a friend take the boys. Tony went outside to work and clean. Then run errands. I got the baby to sleep and went to her room.

I decided to light a candle and tidy it up.

The door has been closed since she died. I think Jonathan wanted it open…I think maybe I do too. But Tony needed it nice looking. The bed made…toys where they belong. I cried as I worked…no surprise there. Then I realized this was the last time I would be cleaning it up for her. Organizing all of her things. That realization did surprise me…

I opened a drawer to look at her clothes. It was too much.

Then my phone rang. My sister. I almost didn’t answer…I always answer when she calls. But in that moment my hurt was so pronounced I wasn’t sure I could. I did and she was calling from my front door. I almost didn’t make it to the door. I opened it with knees buckling.. the weight of my sorrow.

…I never asked why she showed up today. oh..

..oh. . maybe my Jennifer sent her?

I found little treasures along the way. Now its a place we can all go into if we want…especially for reading books. I took the book basket my book club gave me filled with books for her and I put it in her room.

Jonathan has been mostly picking all of her “girl” books for me to read to him lately. Now he has a place to go get them and keep them and read them.

Tonight it was his turn to set the table. He got out plates and handed them to me and said who they were for. ..DSC_0007

“Jennifer”

I did the same thing last night. Looking through pictures to put on the blog I came across one with a cute hairstyle I hadn’t done on her for a long time…I smiled thinking I should do that again for her..

…then I stopped smiling. I think I even gagged a little on the truth.

He couldn’t come back from it. He was just broken at that point. I ended up scooping him up after plating everybody’s food…I wasn’t even sure what I was going to do other than hold him as he struck at me…its his way of trying to release the pressure that builds for him..that at 4 he isn’t supposed to have and doesn’t yet have the tools to deal with it.

Jonathan has always been an intense little creature. Loves intense and hurts intense. His feelings manifest loudly and physically. Deep hugs and swinging anger. The potential depth of his hurt…well it scares me…I am so thankful that we had, before Jennifer got sick,  been getting help..somebody for him to talk to…but more-so somebody who helped us be better parents to him.

Something to be thankful for. Because it certainly made a difference. I hope it will again. We are looking into groups for us as parents and for the boys. And couple or individual therapy for me and Tony…first appointment monday.

A parent isn’t supposed to lose a child. Its simply unnatural. But a little boy isn’t supposed to know this depth of sorrow so intimately…Its upside down.

I ended up carrying him to Jennifer’s room. He loved it. We sat and read a book right then. I told him he can go in there whenever he wants or needs to. Its her room…yes…but its our room now too…

I told him how much I cried today getting it looking nice. We talked rules for being in there and thats its only for us…so then we practiced what to do if friends want to go in there.

At dinner we talked about our highs and lows for the day. His low…

missing sissy.

Incredible this boy of ours. Able in that moment to bravely verbalize the weight he is also struggling under. .

…a dead sister is a heavy burden to carry around.

After his bath he went back in her room…upset about something….

but I think he just needed to cry.

I get it…her room is a safe place…Just like she was a safe place. Its not just a glorification of her now that she is gone. She was always like that. So many of my pictures of my kids together she is hugging them…or arms around them. Always protecting…

DSC_0048-1 DSC_0642 DSC_0507 DSC_0603

Maybe I will talk to him about that tomorrow. How she loved and took care of him here….that she can still do that now..Just in a different way.

In the end she did the same for us. Reaching for us to comfort and protect us. Both of these photos she moved with great effort…to touch…heal…love us.

DSC_0518 DSC_0298

 

This morning I woke up…Hurting. Broken. Feeling so sorry for myself. I cried for my loss all day long.

…that is until I was witness to the loss of my 4yr old. ..the hefty weight of his pain.

Tonight I cry for him…

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61 Responses to “weight”

    1. I don’t know if you get a chance to read the responses. I hope so. They are filled with love and prayers for you and your family. Your blog brings me to tears each day and I can’t tear myself away from reading your posts. My heart breaks for you and your family.

      Yet, it is so healthly that you are allowing yourselves to grieve this enormous loss and the beautiful part is that you are helping to heal each other. Making her room a safe place for your family is beautiful. I am sure you will shed many tears in there but that eventually it will be a warm safe lovely place for you to be with your kids and your husband.

      My prayers are with you every day. Every day. Sometimes all we can do is just put one foot in front of the other just like you are doing. Love to you all

  1. Libby you are amazing. I know you don’t feel amazing but you are! It has become my nightly ritual. To read your blog while lying in bed next to my daughter ( still sleeping in her bed since the day JLK passed), and crying for you. For Jonathan. For Tony. I truly look forward to the night I read about how your day was just 1% easier….

    1. I feel & have been doing the same thing. I am so sorry you are hurting! & to see the pain of another child hurting because he misses her too is even harder. Praying for comfort. ❤️

  2. When I read your previous post “Too much” yesterday…it was again a little bit more heavy on the heart, very sad even for me for a stranger, I though this must be a million times heavier on your heart… The next thing what came to my mind was the thought of you seeing her clothes again because that would multiply the pain and realization of her physical being (or the lack of it) in this world…and then I read your post from today and there it is…I can feel through your lines how much that hurts. Please don’t torture yourself…leave the clothes for later, for much later. There will be a right time for that too.
    The pictures you put up are beautiful, so full of love. I think she gave enough love to you all to carry on till the very end of your lives, till you meet again. That was her mission, that is why she came to your family. Look for the signs of love, they are so clear on the face of your children (even through the pictures). xxx

  3. My heart breaks daily for u and the family, please know prayers are always coming and love being sent ur way.

  4. Lifting your sweet boy in prayer! I know Jennifer is keeping watch over you all…..that said….it is so unfair that you all have to go through this.

  5. I am positive Jennifer knew you would need the support today and she put the bug in your sister’s ear. So thankful you have family to support you through this horrific time. I am also glad to read you are seeking therapy. No one should have to go through this alone, and it will give you all a safe space to express feelings and learn to help the little ones through their own. It makes me so sad to know that Nicholas and Charlotte won’t know their big sister except through pictures and videos- but I am also glad they HAVE the pictures and videos so they can at least know something of her.
    Still here, still listening, still fighting, still praying for you all.

  6. My ritual now and ever since I knew of your story, is to get up before my boys do to read the blog just in case I cry- because I do often. Love to you Libby. We are all still listening…

  7. My ritual now and ever since I knew of your story, is to get up before my boys do to read the blog just in case I cry- because I do often. Love to you Libby. We are all still listening…

  8. I have not has your hurt. I have seen your hurt in the faces of patients that I take care of. It’s an immense hurt to experience. My heart bleeds for you, your kiddos and husband. I have no idea how you get back from such a loss. But I know that you will find a way.

  9. Like so many, my heart breaks for your family. Thank you for continuing to share your pain as you struggle so that we might lift you up. Hugs and heartfelt prayers.

  10. Libby,

    You continue to share your story with us and we are so grateful. I think of your family constantly. Thank you. I think your words have affected everyone in such big ways.

  11. I read your blog daily and daily I feel an ache in my heart that is almost too much to bear. I am humbled at all your family has endured. No words can appropriately convey my sympathy. I can only hope for you that the happy memories of Jennifer help to soothe your families’ pain and that she comes to see you soon and to let you know that she is ok.

  12. My heart breaks for you. Jennifer is part of a much bigger picture, and I pray that we will understand it some day. She has touched so many lives, and continues to do so through your words. Many people have already told you this, but you have made me a better parent. I am more patient, less angry, and I take more time. Because I still have time, but we never know how much or how little time we have. I wish I could give you more time with your beautiful Jennifer. It breaks my heart.

  13. Hi Libby – it’s me again, the stranger that sobs in my work bathroom every morning after I check my blog with/for you and your family. I can’t help but think that Jonathan is going to grow up into something profound. All I can think is about children throughout the world who deal with monumental tragedies (war, sickness, etc) WITHOUT the benefit of loving, strong, vocal parents who try to help them work through their confusing, complicated, huge feelings. His ability to feel so strongly is a handful, I’m sure (I’m the parent to a toddler whose highs are VERY high, and lows are very low) but I think that same profundity of feeling will make him a compassionate, uniquely aware adult some day. And that your ushering him through this torrent of pain, loss and memory will give him the tools, in the long run, to be someone great. Jennifer’s gift to him, and yours. Thinking of you, Libby and your whole family. And Jennifer TOTALLY planted that seed in your sister – “get over there and give my mama a hug.”

  14. Still holding you in thought and prayer. Even though we don’t know each other, I hope you can still feel my care, and my sorrow.

  15. Libby,

    I know you don’t see things as we ‘readers’ do….because you are so entrenched in it all. But BELIEVE ME when I say this: you are an excellent mother. Your kids are going to be just fine. There is no magic strategy here. But, they know how much you love them, and that is going to see them through. I believe that Jonathan will be okay. I often ask myself (w/my kids): would I want ME as my own mom? And if the answer is yes I know I’m doing ok….well, not to sound strange, but how could one not want YOU as his/her mom? You love them despite how awful you feel. They know that. Never ever underestimate. Kids always know.

    As for that safe place (her room)…,keep writing….because I think you are seeing things for what they are, and I hear in you a truth that wants to come out….I see the good and the truth and the comfort peeking it’s way out….and your writing helps make that possible. Again, I know you can’t see it….but I see it all coming out slowly. You are going to get there. It’s going to be okay. (And I hate saying that as though I know your pain….so forgive me if it sounds annoying.)

    Your sister? Jennifer sent her? There you go. Believe it. That was my favorite thing that you said.

    One tiny, little step at a time. And I am so so sorry.

    L

  16. So much love and hugs for you. I wish I had something profound to say; some way to make it just a little bit easier for all of you. Always know we are here to lift you up, to help in any way we can.

  17. I have no words other than thank you for sharing your story. I wish I could give you a big hug even though we’ve never met. Reading your posts is a big wake up call to so many parents to not take any day for granted. I’m so terribly sorry for your loss and pray for your family often.

  18. I made the mistake of reading this in class while my Kinders were busy…mistake…I bawled. I can feel your pain and so want to take it from ypu. Know that she is still with you. She is present in the love that permiates within your family and always in your heart. My prayers are with your family.

  19. Libby, my heart hurts for you and your beautiful Family. Thank you for continuing to share your story. As always, sending love, hugs, prayers and support.

  20. Dear amazing mother, It is so heartbreaking to read but I thank you for allowing another mother who is a stranger to get a glimpse into your experience even though it is flooded with pain. Although I have never met you or your family I have had to stop and cry as read the depth of hurt that your beautiful family is going through. I hope it doesnt feel cheap, my sincerest simpathy is all I can offer and it doesnt undo anything. I wish all of the collective love and support could do something to help. God bless you and I pray you can continue to be brave as your beautiful Jennifer and you are impacting others by your sharing and stirring up compassion that this unfair world deperately needs.

  21. I think of you and sweet Jennifer daily and send love, lots and lots of love, to you and your beautiful family.

  22. Every time I read one of your blog posts I can’t help but hope and think this is all just a bad dream. I am still so sorry for your loss and continue to pray for you and the whole family.

  23. This post has made me cry so hard. I woks I was closer to try to help you help J. You are doing all you can. It’s so good. But you’re so right that he should not have this burden, nor should you. Sending love.

  24. Hugs to Jennifer’s brothers and her little sister. She is their guardian angel. Strength to you Libby. Your a great mom. Stay strong my friend. Stay strong. Let Jennifer help you and hold her arm as she helps you be a mother to her little brothers and sister.

  25. I have no words, just prayers. I read everyday and will continue to do so. We are still listening Libby. Your story and your sweet Jennifer has made such an impact on my heart and in my life. May your beautiful angel rest in peace, and may god bless you and your family with peace and the strength to heal

  26. You are an amazing mom. Your kids are the luckiest. And now it is your time to grieve. Don’t ever feel bad for others, you have to feel this to be able to be there for them when you are ready.

    A very wise person told me when I was trying to deal with loss that those who die young deliberately “took a short contract” so they can teach the rest of us and show us the way. Your beautiful forever 6years old Jennifer has done so much already (with you and through you) and this is just the beginning…

    And we will stay with you in this.

  27. Tony and Libby, you have been such amazing parents, it’s why your children are such good people. I pray for all of you always. I adore what you have done with Jeniffer’s room.its simply perfect!

  28. Praying for your family. I’m so glad your are going to get some counseling. It will be good for your marriage and your kids.

  29. I read ur blogs and my heart breaks for u and ur family. The videos pictures and story of ur family touch my heart. I pray for u to find peace in ur day. I know u hurt. Ur children are all amazing and need u. Jennifer is always watching u. Ur an amazing mother. I loved the glitter photo shoot. I cried. Ur daughter was blessed to have u and tony as parents as u were blessed to have her. She is and will always be alive in memory and in spirit. Thank u for allowing us all into ye life.

  30. My earliest memories are from about 15 months old, and they are all about people or animals. You may be surprised what your little one can recall. Even now at 28 I am recalling things that I had not before, and then I confirm details with my parents and they are about things they had even forgotten about. There are some children who even remember their births, around age 3 is when these sorts of memories can be conjured oftentimes.

    So thankful you are getting help for the boys and for you and your husband. You are right- this is NOT right. Praying peace.

  31. Wonderful to hear that you’re getting therapy for yourself and your family. I think that it’s important. Art therapy really does wonders for children! May you put one foot in front of the other and find peace at some point on your journey. Find comfort and support in your family and friends and from the many strangers around the world who are following your story and sending you prayers. BIG HUGS!

  32. You are doing amazing, Libby. Therapy for you, art therapy for your boys, you are incredible. I so wish I could bring Jennifer back to you all. Your pain breaks my heart every single time I read your entry, but I log on every morning to see how the previous day went for you in hopes you’ll find little things to smile about – eventually. I will do what I can to try to make pedi cancer supported much more than it has. Thank you again for sharing this incredible profound, painful journey.

    You continue to amaze me day by day.

  33. Libby,

    I have been following your heart breaking story for months but have never commented. I knew that nothing I could say would ease your pain. But I do have to tell you that I 100% believe in guardian Angels. One saved me from drowning when I was Johnathans age. Sweet Jennifer will forever be protecting them and you.

  34. I see your posts every morning and think about them throughout the day and into the evening. With every post I shed more tears for you and your family.
    One word continues to stick out for me in all of these posts…inspiration.
    You continue to inspire mothers to spend more time with their kids, you’ve inspired others to be involved with the cancer organization and donate, you’ve inspired others to come together as a community, and you continue to inspire those reading your blog, that life is hard right now, but you keep moving forward. You have such a beautiful gift Libby…you’ve inspired me.

  35. This just breaks my heart, can’t EVEN imagine what you and little Jonathan are going through but sending Big Hugs for you and you little one, Bless his heart. So glad you’re going to go to therapy, it will be good for you in due time <3

  36. Jonathan is a very smart little boy and you are such a great mom even through this very difficult time.

    Today I thought of you when I came across this article on the internet about why Robert Munsch wrote the book “I love you forever”. He lost two babies. So it is really about “the love that persists beyond time and space, and an ode to those parents who never had the chance to rock their babies.”
    http://blogs.babycenter.com/mom_stories/09192013-the-sad-story-behind-i-love-you-forever//

  37. I am so sorry! I sit here at night at the end of my day and I read your beautiful, heartfelt, and grieving words…I cry and pray for you and your family. I wish I could hug you! xo

  38. I’m so glad your sister showed up. Jennifer must have known you really needed her at that moment. Lots of love and hugs your way.

  39. Libby, I came to this site via a friend, who suggested we send out extra prayers for JLK. I fell in love with a little girl who clearly was dearly loved and cherished. I’m a Mom of 4, and I have asked myself many of the same questions you pose, since I started following and praying for children with cancer. How would I parent my other kids when my heart is broken?? How would I go on?? The grief you write about is so palpable, that when many of us read your blog, it takes those questions all us Moms ask and makes it all so painfully clear. There is not a good answer for any of it and it is so unfair!!! I so wish that I could do even one tiny thing to make this better for you but I know that is impossible. So many have said this but I hope you know there are bunches of us out here praying daily for peace and comfort for you. You are an inspiration to me, and I hope you see JLK in your dreams soon. God bless you all!

  40. You are doing such a great job Libby. Really amazing. You are proud of Jonathan for sharing his hurt, his low of the day and you share with us. You are a great mother.

  41. I am so sorry to read your story, yet I cant NOT read your blog each day and feel your pain along with you.
    You are an amazingly strong woman with a strong family and you will learn in time to live again and the pain you feel now will be replaced with happy memories of your sweet girl. Lean on anyone you need to for support and strength, keep writing your blog as your outlet and please know that so many are here for you even though you dont know us…
    I found the article below and thought of you and your family as well

    God bless you Kranz family <3

    http://www.parenting.com/article/dipg

  42. That I think about Jennifer every day, although I never met her, is one of the greatest joys of my day. I have learned so much about love, and joy, and grace, and strength from her. I am moved by the purity of her soul. When I hear the song Brave, or Girl on Fire, or a Thousand Years, I see her laughing smile in my heart. She is like my little protector, she protects me from saying the hurtful things that creep into my head to say to the people I love. She protects me from judging myself. She protects me from shying away from important and powerful truths because they are too sad to believe. Thank you for sharing Jennifer with me, with us. And thank you for sharing yourself, so vulnerably and painfully honestly with me, with us. I can never imagine the hell you are living, but I hope with each tear you shed that one day you will have equal the number of smiles.

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