In the middle of the night 1 month ago…

Last night was harder than today in most ways. I sobbed…body racking sobs. Going to bed I went to her room. I talked to her…and cried with her…But I decided to sleep in my own bed.

Heavy sleep found me.. . Like my body just needed to be really really numbed by sleep. I am appreciative… . I woke up this morning to a quiet house. All my boys were gone (Tony camping and kids with my parents) …baby girl sleeping…and big girl..well we all know where she is.

DSC_0349The empty house was a brilliant reminder of what I have to be thankful for.  DSC_0343




I am glad I wasn’t alone though. Just me and Charlotte was perfect. She ate…I cried (kinda a theme for the earlier part of IMG_3995the day).  I just talked out loud.. . to both of my daughters while going about normal tasks. We watched the glitter photo shoot video on the tv and then her slide show. I cried and smiled. I genuinely missed her.

. .. but soon after realized how much I am still just waiting for her to come back. Its like when I really slip into the murky water realization she is gone my body kicks me back up to breathe…I think the disbelief is the only way I can survive still.

My sister came over for a bit and that was good to. I needed a break from my mind ..

Another mother…bereaved less than 2 yrs ago texted me a piece of what works to get her through the anniversary date of loss…she tries to do what her son loved…So I made plans to have my mom bring the boys home and I met them outside to go for a walk…That was one of her favorite things to do with me and her siblings.

Its always so hard for me to know if I should bring her up to Jonathan or not. But I decided to since he wanted to walk holding hands. I told him why were walking. I asked if he knew what a anniversary was…and I explained it had been one month since she died.  He told me he missed sissy. I told him I did too…then he ran ahead with Nicholas…they ran in the blowing wind…blowing down the blooms from the cherry blossom trees. … Later he told me they were fairies flying all around him.



We have always stopped a lot on these walks.. look at rocks or trees.. just about anything. Today we found a rock. We thought it looked like a heart..Jonathan clung to it… fiercely…and full of hope. He wanted to bring it home for her. He just loves to bring things for sissy to put in her room. Very interesting the difference of our interpretations…I saw it as a gift from Jennifer…he saw it as a gift to her.

I wanted to take a picture of him holding it. I asked him to smile…but he said he didn’t want to because he missed her. Sometimes he milks it… because the “I miss sissy” card is a fail safe… but todays was all genuine.

I so wish I could fix his hurt. I hope talking with him… helps.


At home I made a gluten free dinner. Its always so much easier for me to prep the gluten free food…but also hard to finish it off and throw away the box. We talked while we ate about all sorts of things and I asked what they thought Jennifer’s favorite dessert was…cold yogurt. aka frozen yogurt.

So we jumped in the car and headed out. My first time behind the wheel in 2 months. I love our small town…but its also so full of memories. The last time we were there Tony and I had taken Jennifer. She ate a little yogurt. We headed to Target and she threw up.  Her final out of the house excursion..I just hoped music from her services wouldn’t be playing.

Jonathan wanted a cone. My knee jerk reaction was no…it might cost a little more and Jennifer can’t have one. I stopped myself and told him I changed my mind…this was my no into a yes moment. I read them the flavors I thought they would like…even sampled a few. Jonathan walked over to one I hadn’t read…I didn’t think he would like and he firmly said thats what he wanted.

.. . watermelon.

*****I just plugged in my phone to charge it and  download/upload? pictures and a few videos popped up as never been taken out of my phone..not true…so I figure I better share a few…here is a blog about this first one dancing with mommy and first visit with the boys during radiation and a great one from a few days ago of Charlotte cracking up over Nicholas (who has no pants on so I won’t be sharing) *****

IMG_4026We ate together. I missed her. But still enjoyed being with these 3. Eventually though I felt anxiety creeping in. I decided to get some to go for Tony and I to share together when he got home from his camping trip. So he could be part of it too. He got home late…and he was tired. But a good tired. Still he made time to talk with me and eat our cold yogurt together. Its hard for him not to read this blog…but I think its the right choice for us. It helped to connect with him.


Driving home…Brave came on. We turned it up and sang along. (I cried) .. my hope is they are becoming more ok with that. Nicholas doesn’t try to get me to stop every time I start now…hopefully he is just adjusting healthily to this new hyper emotional mother I am.

I put Nicholas to bed..then Charlotte. Jonathan stayed up with me for a bit. He enjoys getting to be the big boy. A lot. I DSC_0415need to remember to find ways to give this kind of treat to Nicholas too. Special moments for just me and him. Jonathan is thrust into being the eldest… but Nicholas is now alone being the middle child. I don’t want to just forget him…Get so caught up in missing Jennifer…worrying about Jonathan and babying Charlotte that he gets left in the dust.

Nicholas is just such a good guy… even at 2 thats how I would describe him. Easy going…loving…protective and hilarious…

I just typed…

. . then erased. .

“I cant wait to hang out with him when he is older…”

Its so scary to even put that out there. That I have faith in tomorrow with him.

I miss that normalcy…where your kids don’t die.


49 Responses to “normalcy”

  1. Dear Libby, I think you did on this difficult day exactly what was meant to be done and it sounds like it helped to everybody, you, the kids and Tony too. With the time you will be able to do it more often and then you realize one day that the memories can turn to a trigger of making you happy rather than making you sad.
    We were all remembering Jennifer with you and will be doing it for a long time!
    I love the picture of the 2 boys with Charlotte in the middle, Jonathan’s arm around the baby is so much “sissy-like”, SHE IS THERE with them in that picture. xxx

    1. Dear Libby,
      I think children are really in-tune with the spirit world without even knowing it! Their little minds are ‘open’. I have no doubt at all that your Jonathon saw Fairies. And I think that Jennifer led him to choose watermelon yogurt. Those are your signs that she is with you every moment <3 How wonderful for your son to feel such goodness! I hope you get to feel that goodness soon!
      So good to hear you had a good sleep. I hope you have a loving, peaceful day.

  2. I have already read tonights blog twice. The watermelon bit just got me. So amazing. How would he have known….

  3. I’m so happy for you and proud , I know this day must of been a difficult one for you. I still cont. to pray for u and your family, I so hope you can feel the love and the prayers. Xoxo Libby

  4. Libby,

    Sounds to me like you are doing as well as can be expected. Continue to find love in those moments that you can.

    Sending love,

  5. What a beautiful blog in such a hard day. I couldn’t have imagined a more perfect day for you amd the kids…well untrue…but this is a close second. I truly believe Jennifer was with you throughout the day and gave you the strength to get through the day. Between the heart rock, watermelon yogurt, then Brave in the radio? She is letting you know she is okay. Thank you for sharing.

  6. I am so amazed by you each and every day! I love this entry for many reasons. It is just beautiful, the relationship you have with your children – all of them, even Jennifer (although I wish she were still here in physical form with you). I love that you talk with her.

    You really are incredible and I got goose bumps reading through “normalcy”. Keep going, one day at a time – each day will present new ways to deal with your loss. But you will get through them. Your children are learning to appreciate your emotions, and in turn you are teaching them that it IS okay to be in touch with every emotion. Laugh, cry, it’s all so normal and healthy.

    I hope you realize the amazing things that you are doing, that you don’t even realize.

  7. You are an incredible mother, my heart aches that you still have so much pain. I imagine that never goes away, just gets pushed back a little further as the weeks pass. The videos you posted were amazing, you can see what a loving and free spirited little girl you raised. You should be proud…very proud.
    Sending you all my positive thoughts…

  8. Baby steps into new normal. You did great today! I’ve seen a few mentions of watermelon, but I don’t know the whole story. Please share sometime.

  9. I agree on the above mentioned comment that she was there with you today…so many signs. And reading today brought me a smile through the tears, it brings me great joy, a stranger, that you had a good day with all your kids and husband. Many hugs and much love to you and the entire family.
    PS- You girls rocked that dance video!

  10. Watermelon……I think heaven smells like that too. And I know she is just sending you signs to tell you she is okay. Sending you love.

  11. My Maddalena saw the picture of Baby Charlotte, grabbed my phone, and started kissing her!! I read everyday and believe with my whole heart that you are the strongest woman and Mama I’ve ever met. Your family’s love is incredible and I hope that will continue to help you on your journey to “normalcy” as you learn to live with Jennifer in your heart. All (4) of your children are beautiful Libby! Sending love your way everyday!

  12. Ahh Libby…Baby steps To normalcy I admire you so much. You are truly an inspiration.
    Watermelon…these are the things that let you know she is still here with you and Tony and her siblings. Cherish those little whispers from Jennifer.
    I am so glad you had a little sleep as well.
    ♥ Hugs Libby….

  13. I was going to write that I have to be sure I read your blog when I’m not in a public place because it makes me sob. But then I thought about you. You don’t have the luxury of being able to “save” your tears for a more private setting. I think about you all the time, Libby. I am trying to say “yes” to my kids more…trying to be a more patient mother. Because of you. xoxo

  14. Libby I wish i could hug you but then youd be like whose this crazy stranger lol you amaze me and I just know Jennifer is right by you daily, your an amazing mother and I pray for your family daily, i love listening to Brave now because it reminds me of your beautiful JLK. always in my thoughts <3

  15. Do you even have any idea how cool/thoughtful/wonderful you are??? You made this most upsetting of anniversaries a day of grace-filled remembrance, tears, sweet things, and the forever-healing power of nature. I will say it forever: you are an intuitive mother whose insights and powers as a parent humble me and try to make me better. All four of your kids lucked out.

    I almost deleted that last sentence. But man, Jennifer could not have had a better place for the last six years.

  16. Love the video clip of you dancing with Jennifer! What a special moment captured in time. You are your family are always in my thoughts. I pray that things get easier for you– that you can find some sense of peace and comfort in your new “normal.” You are truly doing such an amazing job – even the smallest things make a giant impact on the healing process. Please know that we are still listening and loving you!

  17. I truly believe these are Jennifer’s God signs coming to you…. the watermelon choice, the heart rock, the fairies in the air…

    I am not one of those people that grasp for signs or have this esoteric view of heaven and God… but I do hold true that signs come to use from the Holy Spirit..

    Many prayers continued…

  18. Libby, I continue to keep you and your family in my
    Prayers. Thank you for continuing to share your process with
    us. The pictures, video’s (love them! Especially you dancig with
    Jennifer and her and little brother hugging ~ so sweet) your open hearted
    dialogue of your thoughts and feelings and your heartfelt emotions are
    gifts to all who have shared the experience that you are going through.
    Big hugs to you All. I will continue to pray for you all …my hope is
    that you will have periods of peace and serenity more and more as you
    walk along this journey <3

  19. Libby… looking at Jonathan in the picture at the yogurt store…he is hugging charlotte as Jennifer was often seen in photos with her younger siblings..Jennifer has taught them love and kindness.. so much they have learned from her and will grow up with this instilled in them because of her… so much love in your family… that will always be there…

  20. Charlotte’s hair makes me laugh its so soft and fuzzy and I love the way Jonathan has taken on giving hugs and kisses. Sending love and prayers your way.

  21. Kids hearts are so open. Their innocence allows them to connect so much more easily with spirits. The watermelon story brought the biggest smile to my face. You really honored her yesterday in the most lovely way.

  22. I have been following your blog for some time now. Words are useless when it comes to express how sorry I am about your Jennifer. I too have a little girl her age and I can never imagine the pain you are going through. I recently heard this song the other day and it reminded me of your beautiful girl. Perhaps it can bring some comfort to your broken heart…..

  23. As I said yesterday, everything reminds me to think of and pray for you. Today it was a watermelon that fell in the Safeway parking lot and split open. When I stooped to pick it up, the scent was amazing, and I thought . . . . Well, you know what I thought. And then I came home and read about watermelon yogurt. It sounds delish…..hope Jonathan loved it!

  24. I read this blog daily and pray for you just as often. I love your honesty and willingness to share. Today I made a donation in JLK’s memory to a little guy who lost his mother to cancer a few years ago and now is participating in St. Baldricks. I hope we can find a cure in my lifetime and will always do what I can to further the cause. Not only for Jennifer but every child who deserves a happy ending!

  25. Reading more and more healing in every post that you write – Proud of you and Happy for you that some normal moments are creeping into your daily life! Keep up the very hard but very rewarding for your kids and your tender heart work you are doing each and every moment of every day since 1 month ago!

  26. I was thinking about you guys all day yesterday-I am glad you were able to do some of the things she loved-and all those signs you received (rock, song, fairies) were surely from Jennifer, letting you know she loves you. Lots of love and prayers.

  27. I hate I can understand your wish for normalcy kids don’t get don’t get really sick and or die. My son Lachlan, who is 8, had a huge brain tumor removed a year ago Christmas it was benign But a craniotomy had to be done and the docs were very serious with us. We were so scared and frankly he’s lost most of the sight in his left eye but so far the right eye is stable. He goes to school, takes medicine to do the things that his pituitary gland will no longer do.
    The thing is we had already gone through a major infection he had in his femur where he ended up having surgery, being encased in a body cast and staying in the hospital for 10 days before we finally ended up going home with a pic line and intravenous antibiotics that I had to do every six hours along with visits from a home nurse to change his dressings .
    he was in the body cast nearly 4 months and had to learn how to walk again.
    Your comment about things being normal really struck me because I honestly in the five years that passed between these two events would think “oh wow that was crazy” that we went through that really tough thing with Lachlan.
    But now I can’t help but think “what’s next?” He’s the youngest of four so I felt like I’d already been through everything.
    but now I feel like every time I take him to the doctor,any ache or pain or when we go for his six-month MRI and bloodwork is it going to come back normal? or what else are we going to go through? Do I dare picture him in high school or college? I can’t imagine how much you must miss Jennifer but I do understand your yearning for looking at things the way you normally would with your kid, picturing the future… I’m sending much love to you and your family

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