wait

IMG_2733-optSee you at dinner.

That’s what Tony said to me tonight before he went to bed. Tomorrow is his first day back to work. Its going to be a rough transition for all of us. His work has been so good to us.. they are allowing him to come back slowly, 3 days a week.

Its interesting, looking at that top sentence I realize how much that thought used to carry no weight. It was normal life.. it is normal life for most people. Maybe thats what makes it so profound a thought for us.. it shows how changed we are.

That being apart for a day is scary.

What a great man he is. All he sacrifices for us. He missed so much time with her.. its one of the reasons I get so upset she IMG_2528didn’t have that 9 month average time parents are quoted with DIPG.

We were really banking on it. Its why we waited to have him take time off.

After she was diagnosed we started treatment .. and it took a week longer than it should have. So 7 weeks they were apart except for weekends and maybe a dinner mid-week. We had a few weeks afterwards.. filled with a girls trip to disneyland then our make a wish family trip to DisneyWorld. Then a week later we learned that that the cancer has spread. ..

We had just decided that he would start to go to work one week on, one week off. .. Because he missed her so much. Because we were scared he would have regrets…Then we found out that there was no time… He never went back. .

til tomorrow.

I fear for a potential of a lifetime of regrets for him. .. A sacrifice he made that allowed me such a special time with her.

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I went through my clothes today to switch out cold weather clothes for warm weather ones.. I haven’t worn anything but a love4jlk shirt since she died (except at her services) . Going through those clothes so many memories came flooding back to me. I should have hated those clothes. I should have looked at them and remembered a horrible time spent at the hospital in treatments.. instead I saw them.. touched them

and was transported back.. to a time I completely and  so desperately miss.

our last time together as mother and daughter. Not completely normal.. but together.. sharing trips to the park, meals out.

… .the movie Frozen.. .

She was supposed to be nauseous and exhausted… But we did something every single afternoon.

I can’t believe I have such an attachment to those clothes that I wore. I can’t believe how much I cherish that time.. I knew I would miss it. I remember writing about it, but I had no idea how horribly accurate I was. I thought we had so much more time.

I was crying in my room going through the clothes. And I heard the boys playing outside. Running through the hose. For the first time I walked away mid-chore.. unsure if I would have time to organize them later or not.. I started crying.. pretty hard actually. I wanted her there.

I wanted her to get to run in the water with me.

So I ended up walking around the house trying to find something of hers to bring outside with me.. room to room I couldn’t find whatever it was I was looking for. I just headed out to them and played in the water with them. I noticed how the trees are in full bloom.. Again memories flooded in. Truly happy times..

more than happy.

carefree.

I have heard I will be happy again. Carefree though. . I forgot that word even existed.. I forgot what a gift that was.

We were supposed to go to a remembrance  day hosted by Stanford/Lucile Packard.. when we talked to Jonathan about it though he was pretty firm in not wanting to go. We were ok with that since last weekend was a bereavement camp and friday was a hard day for Daddy and Saturday a hard one for me. He asked for a fun day.. we owed him that.

One of my brothers showed up.. his girls were playing field hockey at the high school down the street. We went to the game. It was ok. I found myself watching so many of these teen aged girls walking around with their Dads.. It wasn’t gut wrenchingly sad, maybe since that was so far off still.. but I just keep catching myself staring.. imagining.. maybe even a bit of longing..

I look out into the dark of night now.. knowing how changed I am.. and hoping it stays. The clothes were able to wait.. my kids could not.

I got to play with my kids in the water. We laughed. I played a trick on them…

.. . I cried.

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And I still got my clothes put away.

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28 Responses to “wait”

  1. I don’t know why this first picture took my breath away but it did….and then, so did the last. These pictures are just as strong as the words written.

  2. See, these are the kinds of lessons you teach. I would have just kept putting my clothes away, thinking the chore just needed to get done. Chores can wait, the kids can’t. I will be thinking about and praying for you all, but especially Tony, today.

  3. Sending you warm greetings from MN and letting you know I will be thinking about you all day as you transition with Tony going back to work.

  4. We love you Libby. You, Jennifer and your family are always on my mind and in my heart. You are an amazing mother. ♡

  5. Libby! You are such a beautiful young woman! I love that you played a trick on your boys!! And it’s okay to cry. Looks like you turned yesterday into a big, giant YES!! I would call that a win for you and your family but certainly for Jennifer <3 I'm sure she is happier when she sees you taking a brief moment to welcome happiness <3

  6. Lifting you all up in prayer today as Tony returns to work.
    I’m so glad you went out to play in the water with them. You all look so happy. Love to you.

  7. Yesterday, when I “needed” to do the dishes, my 3 year old asked if I would play with him. I thought about you and JLK and I turned a “no” into a “yes” and got on the floor and played with him. Thanks for inspiring me to be a better mother.

  8. I teach and the children in my class know Jennifer because you have shared with us. Friday we had the radio on and the song Brave came on. One of my girls said. “Oh, listen. It’s Jennifer’s song!” All of the girls began talking about her and what I’ve told them about your family.
    Before the song ended….a child made the following statement, “Jennifer was brave but her Mom is strong.” I agree…you ARE strong…stronger than you realize.

  9. Wow, it’s probably going to be hard at first to not have Tony there. and Hard for him at work, those first moments leaving… and coming back home. Hang in there thru this transition, kids!

    My daughter was in the Relay for Life down in LA, i did not know she was doing that…she is going to school there… she posted a selfie that literally made me catch my breath, she was wearing one of Jlk’s t-shirts; I guess she went online, bought it and spread her glitter all over L.A.! I’m not surprised at her thoughtfulness, just didn’t know she was doing it.

    One more sweet girl spreading awareness of your sweet girl!

  10. Praying for a good day for you and for Tony returning to work. I am sure it is hard for both of you but you will get through each and every hurdle. Stay strong and focus on one day at a time and one thing at a time. Your a wonderful mom that always has time for her children and that is BIG. Some mothers would rather watch t.v. then spend time with their kids. So sad but so true. You are grieving and going through so much but you always manage to please your kids. What a wonderful mom and wife you are!! Jennifer was so blessed to have you and your family was so blessed with her. Her energy, love, and kindness came from her parents because we are an example to our children. Love you and your family Libby.

  11. Praying continuously for Tony. His face is so pure and transparent, I ache for him. A daddy’s love for his little girl is something that we women can’t really comprehend, but it is very special. I know that God will heal his heart, too, and that Jennifer is streaming grace and love to him from heaven.

    Looking forward to meeting you, Libby, and hopefully sharing a hug this Friday night. I am praying for strength and peace to carry you through. It is an awesome thing for you to do, and I am honored to be a small part of such an important cause.

  12. I’m so happy that you were able to play with your boys in the backyard. The pictures were amazing everyone so happy. I’m hoping you do get to do that more often. I’m trying to do that myself, thanks to you.

    I also wanted to share a little more about our photo shoot on Saturday. Two things I forgot to mention yesterday. My kids do know that I follow your blog, they ask me questions about Jennifer and they knew she was the reason we were going to have photos taken. I was telling my kids how we only had a short period of time with the photographer and so we needed to be good listeners and make sure we smiled a lot, etc. My son (he just turned 7) asked me if he had to smile. He said he was sad that Jennifer died and didn’t want to smile. That really hit me, from the mouth of babes. I told him how lucky were to be there and that maybe by us being there we could help so many others, etc. The kids had a great time, giggled….and even smiled. On the way home I said lets stop and rent a movie tonight and my son chose Frozen! It took my breath away and gave me the chills. It made me realize that Jennifer was there on Saturday and smiling down on all of us.

    Keep it up, Libby. You’re inspiring so many people!

    Big Hugs!

  13. I don’t know what company your husband works for but that is the type of company that I want to give my business to. So nice to hear that a business was compassionate and family friendly.

    1. I will ask their comfort level of me sharing. Its a bigt company too so they do not have to be so good to us

  14. I learn such valuable lessons from reading your posts Libby. I have learned to leave laundry and go play with the boys for a while, I have learned to turns no’s into a yes… thank you for sharing. Our prayers are with you as always <3

  15. Libby, so many prayers and so much love sent your way. I have a love for you and your family and don’t even know you. You inspire me to be a better mother and definitely make me think twice when I think “my stuff” is more important than being with my littles. My daughter is 2 1/2 and has had these episodes every day for about a year and a half where she day dreams and doesn’t snap out of it very quickly. We talked to her pediatrician and are now being reffered to a neurologist so she can have a brain scan and it’s hard not to think the worst and also hard not to think of your sweet girl. We just got our JLK magnet in the mail last week and I put it on our car & we have had quite a few people ask what it means; Jennifer’s story is getting out there and touching so many lives!

  16. As I read this from Australia Tony’s first day will now be over. I hope you all got through it without too much pain. Praying for you all with love. I agree with everyone else. The pictures of all 6 of you are stunning

  17. Hi Libby…I read Ur blog and u help me to be a better mom. Ur pictures Your words Your memories are beautiful. Jennifer has been blessed with an amazing mom in this lifetime no matter How long she was here. She still stands at Your side in spirit and is truly proud of How loving u are with the siblings. U Are a strong woman and mom. It is OK to be sad and It’s truly OK to be happy. She wants u to be happy Libby. Love u so much. Prayers for Tony. What a wonderful father he is.

  18. You may not be able to be fully in the moment with your boys,
    But they will remember the great memories you continue to
    Experience with them! You are such a great mom! Even in your grief
    You continue to be the best you can be for them! They will always appreciate that!

  19. turned a no into a yes today because of you. Prayers for Tony in resuming work today. love the awesome princess “headdress” in the last image.

  20. Thinking of you and sending extra support as tony returns to work. I agree with the above comment: a company with that much compassion is one I would like to give my business to. Thank you for reminding me that no task is more important that being present with my child. Hope you get through this transition time.

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