This was us…

just A month ago..

yet also a lifetime ago…her lifetime..

Today however was actually ok.

First therapy appointment. Went well. We will have separate appointments in the next week.


***loves of my life***

.. . how many children living in your home?

I teared up. and got somehow really nervous about what to write.

I wrote all 4…with names and ages…

Our friend watched the boys so we could take Charlotte to the dr …another ear infection…

We got there and the kids were being so goofy…wrestling and smiling.

…we laughed. a real laugh. Just one, but enough.

the guilt punched me in the gut.

..the feeling of laughing without her was horrible. And it shook me…in a whole new way. ..

We talked for quite awhile, luckily Tony with the husband and I with the wife. Talking about Jennifer relieved some of that guilt..About missing her and how I will keep her alive in our family.

We also talked about some of the random thoughts that occupy my mind. Like that I know how hard it is for people to know what to do with/for us. The number one is people attempting to make a connection with us, surprisingly this is an especially big one for Tony. Texting, emails and even phone calls…My advice to anybody who knows somebody facing the worst time in their life is to risk getting shut down. Risk getting rejected…because you certainly might…

But if you want to help…its a risk worth taking. So reach out. Just be sure you do it for them. With no expectation to have the reach accepted…

..I personally accept some and reject some…it depends on the moment….the place I am emotionally and what my needs are in that moment. But I appreciate those brave enough to take the risk.

On the way home we stopped to get McDonalds. That threw me..the old me…

.. .the real me …would be bemoaning how hard it was not to be able to just stop and get food on the way home. How

**indoor picnic. she loved to eat and this was one of her favorite surprises**
**indoor picnic. she loved to eat and this was one of her favorite surprises**

unlucky we were.

I was so lucky…so very very lucky.

We ate and bathed the kids. And shared more laughs and snuggles…but this time she was back in the forefront of my mind so no real guilt.

Now tonight sitting here I am trying to understand that guilt. I’m a little afraid she is “sad” seeing us seeming to forget her. That she is jealous wanting to be with us…physically…living breathing..experiencing.. I understand the idea of her being with us always..but I am not to the point to not attach human emotions to her.

And guilt that I laughed..a real laugh. Just a moment. ..

but enough.


51 Responses to “enough”

  1. My faith helps me to believe that Jennifer is in heaven. I believe that her life plan was laid out for her before she ever chose to come to earth and be your daughter. I believe that she is watching over you and hoping that you will make it through. I also believe that she is in such a miraculously wonderful state of being, that given the chance to come back, she’d probably chose to stay where she’s at.
    As parents, we want our children to be happy. I believe she is happy!
    If the roles were reversed, if it had been you and not her, what would you want to see when you looked down from heaven?
    It is ok to smile and to laugh. Survivors guilt sucks, but it’s gonna pass. I promise it’s gonna pass. I didn’t believe it when I heard it either, but it does….. Sending my love always

    1. Sarah, you said exactly what I was thinking. Jennifer is in such a wonderful place that given the choice she would choose to stay. We will never understand that until we get there ourselves. The thing that will make Jennifer feel the most happy and at peace is to see the people she loves happy and laughing again. Libby don’t ever fell guilty for laughing or feeling happy when you can. Jennifer remembers you happy and if she sees you so sad all the time it may make her feel bad, like she hurt you. Im in no way saying that you aren’t entitled to cry and cry a lot, I too would be a mess all the time if I were in your shoes. All I’m saying is take the moments of happiness and laughter when you can and know Jennifer is laughing and smiling with you.

  2. Feeling guilty is completely Normal, but i also feel it’s safe to say she wants you guys happy and she wants you laughing. I bet she knows you think of her constant all of you and she is just happy you are all keeping her memorie alive . She knows how much you guys love her and always will. I pray daily for u and ur family. I also want you to know ur blog has given me a reality check. Reading your blog daily has reminded me to not take life for granted . That we r not promised tomorrow . I have found myself doing activities I normally wouldn’t do with my child to make memories and enjoy everyday. For that I thank you Libby. I don’t know when or if it will ever get easier for you, but I’m always praying for u and ur family. Know everyday I’m here, listening as many of us are. You are our Rock. Thank you! Xoxo

  3. Libby

    Here thinking of you. I hope you keep on blogging
    and posting these beautiful pictures of your Jennifer.
    I don’t can’t possibly understand the depth of your despair.
    I think our loved ones hang around us in spirit at our moments
    Of despair. I believe Jennifer is closer to you than you know.
    I will to keep reading and just be here…

    Lots of hugs

  4. Your daughter loves you so much! I’m sure she is up there with Jesus looking down filled with joy when she sees you smile. She wants you to find happiness again. I know it will b a different kind of happiness but to know that your ok. We all love you and we know the pain will always be there and that’s ok, she is your life and yes part of it is gone, but she lives in your and through your children. See her through them she is always with u. 😀

  5. I am glad to see the therapy helped, and that you will continue going. The guilt for being happy at times will fade. You will feel genuine joy again. You will be able to look back on the memories with a smile. It won’t be soon, but it will happen. Will there always be a piece missing? Yes. But, you learn to live life again and enjoy life again even with it missing. Especially if you all continue to honor her the way you are planning.

    Still here, still reading, and most definitely still praying for peace and some sort of understanding in all of this. ♥

  6. She loves you so much and when you laugh, I picture her laughing, too. I truly believe this. There is no pain, no sadness where she is. I know that is difficult to comprehend and in time it will sink in. You are doing incredible. So brave, with so much grace. Even if at times it doesn’t feel that way.

    Keep up the great work, and continue to be kind and patient with yourself.

    Sending continuous love and support your way.

  7. I meant to add this to my above post, but posting on my phone seems to take on a mind of its own! When my little brother was killed while fighting in Iraq when he was 19, it was very traumatic for my whole family, but especially my mom. She couldn’t get past not getting to say goodbye, and worrying about how his last moments on earth went. I remember her laughing-a real laugh- for the first time about two months after his passing. She followed it up by immediately sobbing. She felt so guilty for that moment of happiness. I asked her if she thought he would want her to be miserable her whole life. Being Christians, we believe Revelation 21:4- “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” People are not sad in Heaven. People feel no pain or fear. I truly believe Jennifer, and my brother, do not feel sad when we are happy. In contrast, they feel joy. She loved you so much and knows you love her, knows you think of her constantly. She wants you to enjoy life until you are reunited with her. Do not feel guilt for laughing. I believe she laughed with you in that moment.

  8. I am grateful you and Tony started therapy. All of the emotions you are feeling are foreign and normal at the same time. I’m happy you felt able to do something normal and please know that Jennifer would want that for you and her family. Sending you love and prayers.


  9. I am so very happy to hear you had a better day. Please, do not, even for one second, feel guilty about that glimpse of happiness that slipped through. The guilt and fear of forgetting or letting down deceased loved ones is often what traps people in endless grief. Jennifer does not want that. All of the information I’ve ever seen regarding spirits communicating from the other side, always expresses that the grief of their loved ones is the hardest thing for them to work through once they pass. Once they pass over, they lose all of our human boundaries and want nothing more than to see their loved ones healing, moving forward and enjoying the remainder of their lives. She loves you, just as you do her. Imagine the roles reversed, having to watch her grieving…you would want nothing more than for her to heal, find peace and find the happiness that remained. You have to KNOW that’s what she wants for you. For all of you. She is a beautiful spirit, no longer confined to our worldly parameters…she knows and understands way more than we can imagine. She will always be six to you, but she is so much more than that in her spiritual freedom. I hope she will find a way to clearly communicate with you…to confirm what we all know…you are an amazing mother, you love your family with all that you are and you WILL get through this. She will see you through. <3

  10. Jennifer is most certainly in heaven. She is watching you but is not able to feel things like jealousy. She knows she will always be with you- that you on the inside- are still a mom of 4. On the outside, people who do not know you and your story will only see a mom of three. She knows you will never forget her- ever. And for awhile, she will be the only thing on your mind- engrained in everything you do. Libby, it makes my heart burst to hear you laughed. It will come. And if you don’t feel ready still? So what? Take your time. You are honestly one of the strongest women I have the pleasure of “knowing”. Sending you the biggest hug today.

  11. A little, tiny glimpse of life. One step forward, two steps back, I would imagine.

    I cannot, for one second, imagine that Jennifer would ever want you to feel guilt. Or that she wouldn’t want you to laugh.

    Just hoping that words and love from a stranger gives you even a little modicum of peace.

    Sending love from NH,

  12. They say that a lifetime on earth feels like seconds in heaven where a nuisance like “time” does not exist, because God and His kingdom are eternal. So for Jennifer you will be with her in the blink of an eye…she wouldn’t even have time to miss you. I also agree with the others…Jennifer is basking in the endless love of our Lord Jesus, she is most definitely rejoicing when she sees her mommy and family smile or laugh. <3

  13. Your precious little Jennifer doesn’t want you to be sad or feel guilty for living, laughing and smiling without her. She was a little girl that was full of smiles and laughs, and wouldn’t want to look down from Heaven at her family and see only tears. She wants you to laugh and smile, and in those times you will feel her presence and love more than you know.
    Give yourself time to grieve, but also remember that Jennifer will always be by your side in spirit.

    Love and hugs to you and your family.

  14. Libby you are such an incredible person. I appreciate the way you write. You don’t hold back and have let so many people learn so much from you. Look at what your sweet girl has done she has brought so
    Many people together and maybe together we can all make a difference. I will continue to keep your family in my thoughts and prayers.

  15. My heart believes she is in Heaven, a beautiful place of ultimate comfort. She is waiting to be reunited with you all, when your time is done here. I also believe she is with you always, and wants you to all to be happy. While life here on Earth is so hard and unforgiving, know in Heaven she is feeling love and comfort. You will be together again. Time. Long here but short there. She is showing you in little ways that she hasn’t left, that she is with you. Charlotte being so little can see her the best. Look for the dragonflies. <3

  16. Jennifer is so beautiful…in every picture her actions remind me so much of my four year old daughter. My heart breaks for you…I don’t even know what to say right now. God bless and thank you for the posts…

  17. Dear Libby, All that these ladies have posted is so true and not much I can add. But I have also lost a beautiful little girl years ago, and felt that guilt when laughter burst through. After a few weeks I began to truly feel her gentle comforting nearness. It’s a warm calmness that tells me it’s Ok to feel joy and that is what our daughters still want for us. Yes you are brave, but don’t punish yourself when days hit with anger, when you want to scream “No I am not brave”! Drive somewhere and scream it out, and then you will feel her laughing with you afterward. You are blessed to appreciate your other innocent children and wonderful husband who will help you live in honor of Jennifer. She is no longer in pain, and she only wishes you Joy of life! Pain will ease. Praying for you and sweet family!

  18. Thank you for the honesty about accepting/not accepting attempts to reach out to you. Very honest, real, and eloquent. You don’t know me, but according to facebook, it looks like we have a few mutual friends. I have been following your blog, and I have told many people about it. Some people can’t understand why I’d want to cry everyday, reading about your story. Your grief. Thank you for giving us a chance to support you by reading this. I hope you feel comfort from our responses to you. Yes, you make me take a step back, hug my children tighter, have more patience…all of the above. But you also give me a chance to pray for you- when you are so descriptive with your feelings, actions, perceptions- it helps us know what to pray! Lately my pray is that you know that God has you and your family in the palm of his hand. He grieves with you, and He gives you the perfect ways to deal with your grief and the grief of your family. I pray you KNOW this. Don’t worry. Your babies are getting everything they need from you. Feel the love, Libby 🙂 You are a wonderful mommy and wife, and you are grieving in just the right way- even if it doesn’t feel like it at times! Again, thank you for sharing.

  19. More than anything Jennifer wants you to be happy. There is nothing that could make her more content than seeing you laugh with the kids… Even if it hurts you afterwards…for the time being. As if she would be looking through that flower and saying with her eyes: “laugh, mommy laugh”!

  20. I have been reading for a while but have never commented before now. First of all I want to say to you and your husband thank you for sharing this journey with us. Casually overtime I would mention this blog to my husband. Every so often he would out of the blue ask for an update . Now it’s been something we read together on occasion when it’s quiet and the kids are in bed. We’ve learned to be better more patient parents. To take our time and not rush especially at bedtime. What you are going through is so unimaginable but from the outside looking in I think you’re handling it with such grace. I know our paths will never cross but your blog his impacted my life forever. We think about you often and are grieving for you. I know nothing I could type out here will take the pain away but just know we are reading & plan to do more in the fight against childhood cancer.

  21. I’d say you did a good thing today getting out of the house. It’s important to acknowledge the steps you are making. Just one day at a time. One hour at a time. I’m still reading daily and you and your family are in my thoughts.

  22. I also believe absolutely that Jennifer is in heaven. I also believe that in heaven, she can feel what’s in your heart even more so than she could while she was still here on Earth. She knows she is loved, and being the little Mother Hen that you’ve described her to be, I cannot imagine for one second that she would want anything less than happiness for you, Tony, and her precious siblings. Thinking of and praying for you daily ♥

    More love from NH!

  23. Libby dont feel guilty. Jennifer I am sure is in heaven and I am sure she would want you to be happy and not sad. She is not jealous when you laugh or are happy. I think she may be sad when you are upset and sad. What if you had passed away (God for bid) would you want your children to morn your death forever. Or would you want your kids not to smile or laugh any more. I know you would want them to go on with their lives and live them the way they are suppose to. I know as a mom we feel like loosing a child is the worst that could happen and it is but loosing a mom to a child its just as horrible. I lost my mom when I was 13 and to this day I remember the day of her death because I spent the whole day with her that day instead of going to school. I fed her, I combed her hair and I sat at her side all day long. THe minute my cousin took me to go and get something to eat my mom passed away. I felt like my life had ended that same day. I would come home from school and cry and cry and I hated everything and everyone but slowly and I mean slowly the pain was a little less each and every day. The day will come when you will feel stronger and will be able to handle everything a little better. It will take time but the day will come when you will live your life and enjoy your other 3 children more than you do now. My prayers are that the Lord will touch you and give you the faith to believe that in time your heart will hurt less and your life has a big value to your other three children. Right now you feel like nothing else matters other than the fact that you lost your first born but in time you will accept it and go on each day. Counseling will help both you and Tony. When friends try to comfort you they always tell you what you want to hear so they dont hurt you but a counselor will tell you and help you get through it and make you see that your life still has purpose. Sending my love to you and your family and holding you all in prayers.

  24. This picture of Jennifer with her face in the middle of the flower… absolutely beautiful. Her eyes are glowing with kindness and love. I am positive she is watching over her family now with the same love and that same beautiful glow in her eyes. I wish you continued strength as you tackle each new day that comes Libby. I am here like the others and will continue reading and will especially continue praying and sending love to all of you. xoxo

  25. I think you’re right, she DOES still have real, human emotion. And she’s not watching you laugh without her…she’s laughing WITH you. Heaven isn’t as far as we tend to think. Heaven is standing right next to you not watching you forget, but watching you live. It’s not that she’s with you just in thought as you keep her memory alive. Her spirit, her actual, physical, spirit is alive! She never leaves you because that part of her never dies! That part of her is actually alive. You will see her again. Really see her. Prayers forever with your family…

  26. Jennifer would never be sad seeing you move on in life because she would NEVER want you to live in constant sorrow she was a little Mother in her role in the family and as you have typed many times she always wanted to make anything she could better however she could for whichever family member she could.

    Knowing this you have to know really deep down that she would want you to focus on healing and being Happy and Joyful again with happy memories of her in your heart she would NEVER want to know that you are stuck in a place that you will never come out of because of such big sorrow.

    Jennifer would want you to be the best mom you can be to your 3 left at home with you because she would never want them to not have a happy loving healing Mommy – She would want what is best for all of you and she would do whatever she could to help you get there!!! <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

  27. I read your blog every day and lately I have thought to myself, how awful it is that we all as moms tend to put such harsh judgments on ourselves, when really we are all just doing the best we can. In following your journey, it hit me that harsh judgment and guilt about the facets of parenting doesn’t stop even in death. I don’t know you, but I want to tell you my wish for you today is for you to be gentle with yourself. You are in the trenches fighting literally the worst battle a mom could face. Whatever you are feeling is just part of this hell that you will eventually walk through, there is no right or wrong. I for one, think you are amazing and an inspiration to us all!

  28. I bet she laughed too, I bet she watched and laughed and it came through you. She doesn’t want you to stop being the family she loves, and maybe the human sadness isn’t there and maybe she’s there laughing with you.

  29. I’m no theologian, but my guess is that jealousy is an earthbound emotion. 😉 I think Jennifer is filled with light, love, compassion and yes, probably laughter! I understand it must feel like a betrayal…and my heart hurts that you feel guilt for such a delightful, offhand reaction to your boys’ playing. Love, love, love to you and family.

  30. I hold you and your family close to my heart and in prayer. Sending hugs and love your way. Your beautiful little girl is smiling on all of you!

  31. Revelation 21:4
    “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

    Our human body and mind cannot fully understand the eternal love and happiness of being in heaven with Jesus forever. Jennifer is in the best place she can be. In the arms of Jesus. I am so heartbroken for you that you don’t have her physically with her. But I also rejoice that she is with our Lord and the angels. I read a boon called “heaven is for real”. It’s about a boy who’s heart stopped, but they were able to resuscitate him. Months after his ordeal, he opened up to his dad about his experience of going to heaven. It was a great read, and when you’re ready, you should read it. I think it will help you.
    I’m still praying for you guys.

  32. Oh Libby. I ADORE these photos of Jennifer! When I get to the bottom of your blog, so heavy hearted and wishing I could just pray away your pain . . . . this bright sunbeam is beaming at me from within a daisy . . . . And a big smile breaks out on my face. I give thanks that you truly have been blessed with a special angel for 6 years on this earth. And though your heartache of learning to live without her is still fresh, I know that you are gonna make it. Those twinkling eyes and that bright smile are glowing within you and healing your heart, day by day, moment by moment. God knew this sadness would come into your lives, and He grieves with you, but He rejoices as well, because He also knows that you will be reunited one day . . . . and then it will be Forever.

  33. I have only been reading your blog for the last 2 weeks. I’m captured by your story, your honesty and your truth. I look forward to your blog each day. I end up feeling angry that your sweet girl was taken from you, I feel happiness during your recollections of your sweet girl, I feel sadness that you all have to experience this level of grief and loss, I feel helpless. I wish I could come up with the right words to say. I do know Jennifer is with you, every second of every day. A sweet and beautiful spirit along side you . I can imagine that thought is bittersweet for you. One step at a time. My thoughts are with you.

  34. You know I actually prayed that you would laugh again. To remember for a split second what joy feels like even if it didn’t last long. Jennifer will never be forgotten and I believe as well that she loves you with all of her heart and is happy in heaven. I’ll continue to pray for you and your family that Jennifer will always be in your hearts and that you will continue to find peace.

    Thank you again for sharing with us. You are doing a great job and such a great mother.

  35. That last picture of her in the sunflower melts my heart. That amazing smile…I saw a tree today full of white blossoms and I thought of you and Jennifer and how I felt like she was spreading her beauty and in the moment I hoped that she would show you that beauty too (which I’m sure you see in moments in the day).

    I want to find this beautiful quote I still remember from the book “Operating Instructions” by Annie Lamott. Her best friend had breast cancer and finally succummed after many years battling it. Anyway, there was some quote a friend of hers told her that went something like – we are just a small part of this great beautiful tapestry of life. Some people’s string might be shorter because their part is so much more brilliant and bright. We are part of it so we can’t see the whole but from above we are all woven together. Anyway, it was said much more succinctly and beautifully but I like to think that your sweet Jennifer contributed in a beautiful way to that ‘tapestry’. Hugs and love to you and your whole family

  36. We can only imagine how difficult it is and that it must on some level feel like a betrayal to laugh. Jennifer would want you to continue to teach your kids how to laugh at silly moments and to show them how they affect you! Thinking of you and trying to send strength for this continuing journey …. that sunflower picture is one of my favorites!

  37. Libby, I stared at her eyes in the picture and I laughed. Real, outloud laughing! Those eyes want people to laugh. Thinking about them is keeping a huge grin on my face as I type. Her eyes give the gift of laughter, much like a tropical bird gives a gift of beauty.

  38. Sweet Libby ~ I KNOW that Jennifer WANTS you to laugh, love and live for your living children. She didn’t choose to leave any of you, including her siblings. Jennifer was the big sister, the protector of her siblings and she wants NOTHING more than to watch you and daddy love and enjoy ‘her’ babies. There is no sorrow, no pain and certainly no jealousy or envy in heaven. I’m certain she was giggling out loud at the silly things they were doing that made you laugh. Jennifer “gave” you her earthly love and filled your heart with all she had before she left you. You know that, you felt that warmth. She is inside you and she will never, ever leave your heart. We are all here…reading, listening, praying for you as you move ever so slightly foward, not without her, but with her inside YOU, her mother, her protector! Jennifer loves you forever and she wants her mommy happy. LOVE to you all!

  39. Continued positive thoughts and prayers to you and your beautiful family. <3 This Mom is proud of you and your husband for getting into therapy! Hold on to each other and get through it together. She would want to see her family happy again. You will get there. You are a survivor and you're stronger than you think.

  40. Don’t feel guilty for a laugh…for living…for enjoying J, N & C. Jennifer doesn’t want you to be suffering and missing the smiles and fun. She wants you to be happy and soaking it all in. I am so glad that a little…a big laugh snuck it’s way into your day. Maybe that was her, touching your heart with her glitter girl self…reminding you of the joy and love of life. Reminding you of your deepest love…your family.

    Much love to you and yours.

  41. remember who directed you toward laughter, God and your daughter. it is they who lead us toward events that can either either crush us or lift us. it is up to us. jennifer wants you to be happy again, but that damn guilt. all we can imagine is the betrayal of happiness, the belief that being whole and centered again means that maybe we are already forgetting about them. moving on may mean that we didnt love them that much. but going on means that life can be good, okay, maybe even wonderful, but NEVER the same. NEVER. damn, this grief crap is so hard.

  42. You have depicted Jennifer in such a way I do not believe she would want you to be grieving or sad… or not laughing. I am sure she would want you all to laugh and love and go on remembering her! I echo several people here. I believe she’s in heaven and truly – she is so busy with the light and life there – she doesn’t have time to worry or care about those here on earth! She is free! She is running and playing and loving her new life! I truly believe that! I hope you do too! Hugs to you. I remain so sorry for your profound loss.

  43. I stumbled across your website and have so much love and empathy for you. In the past year of grieving my mom who was my best friend and who died far too young I have found one book that has really spoken to me. It is a lovely, simple book that just seems to ‘get it’. Written by a woman whose daughter died after an accident so someone who can certainly relate, in her own way, to the grief a mother feels. It is called “Healing After Loss, Daily Meditations for Working Through Grief”. author is Martha Whitmore Hickman. It doesn’t fix anything or even try to, but the one page per day comments, quotes and thoughts speak to me. Perhaps they will to you, as well? Another great book for children is “The Invisible String” about how we are all always connected. It’s a sweet, comforting story, not focused on death but addresses it briefly. Sending you and your husband and children so much love, all of them.

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