llama llama

Memories are all I have left.. Its what us bereaved parents cling to.

but when they hit unexpectedly it can be devastating. I feel like I have been hit over and over again today, and I feel so weak. I rarely leave the house to run errands anymore. Her memory seems to haunt me everywhere I go. I actually wouldn’t mind it so much if it was just me .. I have no problem crying in public.. But it just isn’t fair for my kids. ..especially on days like today when the tears were fairly constant.

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Turning on the car.. I hear the song we walked her down the aisle to.. The only time we will have that privilege.

Even just driving in the parking lots for the grocery stores got to me today. I still haven’t been able to go into a grocery store since she died.. Today being near them had me in tears .. and leaving the parking lot.. facing directly towards the place she will be buried..

I went to the drugstore to pick up a prescription.  I remembered being there the last time .. with all 4 of my babies.. She was in her wheelchair. I looked around and I could almost physically remember her being there.. Like I was trying to will her back into being by staring hard enough down the toy aisle.

DSC_0206We went to the sporting goods store .. when we walked past the baseball stuff I felt like I was being sat on.. my whole body felt so heavy.. so weighted down.  I remembered buying her tee ball pants. How cute she looked in them. So tiny we had to roll even the smallest size up in the waist. How she wanted the ones with a little design on the waist band.. and a pink helmet. I wanted to get black so her brothers could use the same one in following years. .. But she looked so cute in the pink one I went for it.

Thankful today.. for those times I turned a “no into a yes” (read about that here )without realizing the lasting gravity those insignificant moments would hold.

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And then I was exhausted by it all.. broken down by the grief struggling to escape. At home I got the kids lunch and snuck away into her room.. to fall on her bed and sob.. and talk to her.. .. and pray .. Just for a minute.  And I escaped to write this.. to find freedom in my words.

******* Picking back up long after their bedtime *****

For her birthday she got a card with a musical bracelet.. the boys found it and were playing it.. I was transported back immediately.. To a time when I still had hope.. When I believed a miracle just might happen .. The lyrics end with..’all you have to do is believe the impossible’… How I ached for that to be true as she would play it over .. and over again..

fuck you bracelet

And Charlottes baby toy. A friend brought it over …either right before she went on hospice or while she was on hospice. It was like the background music to our lives over those 2 weeks. When I hear it now.. it freezes up parts of me..Remembering how horrible that time was.. but how much better it was than the present is most of the time.

And I struggle with that.

How horribly selfish I am for wanting that time with her suffering back to relieve my own suffering now.

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I even dread memories that were never made..

My family is all going away for a massive family trip. Planned before we even knew she had cancer.. that feels like forever ago but its still 3 months til the one year of diagnosis. For our cabin her name is still listed with us..  The other day talking about the trip with my sister she mentioned horseback riding and it felt like somebody had taken a a tire iron to my knees. ..

I was so excited to take her… you had to be 7 to go.. but I was all set to lie. She would nearly be 7 anyways. ..

Now -forever 6-

I had forgotten about that.. and have been struggling to shake that … broken at the knees feeling ever since . Tony is going up early to golf so we tried to pack some tonight. Packing for just 5 of us.. tire iron moving upward.. her absence pounding me in the stomach. realizing I have no idea whats even going on for the trip.. because I don’t need to be as prepared as I used to be as parent to a kid that had to eat gluten free.

And trying to figure out how to physically bring her with us.. and emotionally how to remember her.

Reading the kids Llama Llama misses mama tonight it struck me. A piece of my fear. This Llama goes to the first day of school… He misses his mama .. but he learns that mama always comes back.

What if she misses me like that? What if she is just waiting for me to come for her.. like I always promised her I would?

What if she isn’t?

What if it’s just me … reading a children’s book to my living 3….crying because I am the one waiting for her to come back?

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Until there is a cure

25 Responses to “llama llama”

  1. One day you will be reunited with your precious daughter. It may feel like a lifetime to you, but it will be a blink of an eye for her. Sending prayers and peace.

  2. She is waiting for you there where all other loved ones are. But not in a hurry, time is endless there. She will welcome you there one day and it will be only love around you. I believe this 100%.

  3. She is with you. Leaning over your shoulder as you read the book. And sometimes off with the dragonflies, and sometimes like that children’s book you read at the service holding hands with the man who loves children.

  4. As a preschool director I meet and talk to hundreds of parents a year. I met with a family yesterday that lost their daughter to an unrelated illness. My kind immediately came to you and Jennifer. I thought how this mother was struggling with the same feelings that you must be and I prayed that she had an outlet or allowed herself one like you have here. She was holding her 2 month old and enrolling her two year old. I think just getting through each moment, each day is a heroic action from women who simply want to be mommy. I pray for you everyday Libby and while that won’t bring Jennifer back, my prayer is that God will continue to strengthen you and inspire you in your endeavor to fight this monster that faces more children everyday. I believe in eternity and believe that you will be reunited with Jennifer. Until then I pray that your story, your willingness will continue to reach even more people and change their lives as it has mine.

  5. Stick with what you know… with what your faith tells you…she is with God. She misses no one, and she feels nothing but joy. Focus on your healing and please don’t torture yourself with useless worries about her. She is more than fine.

  6. Libby, I know how you feel when you hear those songs, I was at the dentist and boy I hate the dentist, but sitting there with my ear buds on two of her songs came on, Brave and Let her go, I felt the tears coming and that big lump in my throat and I sat there and talked to her and thanked her for sending me thise songs.. I think the Brave song was so that I would be strong and not be such a big woose at the dentist lol. Libby I think of Jennifer every day and the struggles you are dealing with and wish I new you so that I could help you more with your daily tasks., but I will keep praying for you and your family, maybe one day when I’m at my aunt’s house who lives just around the corner from you maybe I’ll hear Brave again and come and try to meet you, again the last time when I dropped off your necklace that my daughter in law and I made for you, I’ met your mother what a wonderful lady just like you.. big hugs for your family of 6. Have a wonderful vacation remember Jennifer is always with you and stamped in yourt heart.

  7. Libby, I hope you can feel her and that she sends you signs on the trip. I miss her so much! I miss her for you. She looks so cute in her pink helmet. So glad that No was turned in a Yes. You are the reason I have more Yes moment with my daughter. I will always be thankful to you that lesson. (Let her go just came on the radio as I am typing this) Jennifer will be Forever 6 but never forgotton. JENNIFER JENNIFER JENNIFER xoxoxox

  8. I pray for ways you can all connect with her and remember her on your trip. I agree with above posts…she is in a place where sadness and fear do not exist. She is not worried about when you will show up. I think about that reunion sometimes and smile because I am sure you will be exclaiming how you have missed her so much and it has been so long, and she will look at you a little bewilderingly and say she just got there. In the meantime, I pray for you, all six of you, and wish with all of my heart things were different.

  9. So much love to you. The memories can knock you off your feet. Recently, on my brother’s birthday (even more than 10 years after his death), I was so filled with loss, that I started writing them down. All the memories, things that only he and I would know. It helped, to have a record of it all, to recognize the impact that he still has. I hope you find some peace in the writing here. If not now, someday.

  10. Bring pinky. You know if she were here she would bring pinky. Not trying to be bossy lol, but nobody will judge you if you carry pinky around so Jennifer can be there for everything!

  11. I’m so sorry Libby. This is all so hard. The big events, the small ones, every minute of everyday. Lama lama is now added to the growing list of things that makes me think of you and Jennifer.

  12. Dearest Libby, I wish I could hug your neck & soak up some of your pain. She is so happy, dancing in the clouds, free from anything negative.
    She will not be forgotten. Love4JLK

  13. Dearest Libby, I wish I could hug your neck & soak up some of your pain. She is so happy, dancing in the clouds, free from anything negative.

    She will not be forgotten. Love4JLK

  14. If you read her the llama books then there is another line she can hold onto… “Even when Mama is not right here Mama llama is always near”. The two of you are soulmates you can never be too far from one another. I know it feels far to you but not to her, she sees you, hears you, and hugs you when you cry. It is because of her that you are able to get out of bed each day and go through the motions. Not how things are supposed to be, I know but your little llama knew how much mama llama loved her 🙂

  15. Such a sweet angel face. You have such GREAT pics of your angel. She is always by your side and I pray that she sends you signals of her presence. Prayers and more prayers for comfort.

  16. Libby, Jennifer is with you. I k ow its not in the way you both deserve. She will be with you always. And one day you will get to see her again..Just before I got home from work “I choose you” played. By sara berellis. I cried for Jennifer and I cried for you. I love you libby and your whole family. I think about Jennifer every single day. We all love you all. All 6 of you. I talk to Jennifer everyday. Hoping she goes to you. I will always be here for you.

  17. When I hear her “walk down the aisle song”, wherever I am, I feel kicked in the gut – but I can’t stop listening, remembering her service, and thinking about everything I’ve learned about her here. It’s impossible to stop listening, and in spite of the pain, I love remembering Jennifer. Heaven is perfect, and she feels no pain – physical or emotional. I think that’s got to be wonderful and horrible for mommy’s. Libby, you’ll be with her again. I know you know that. Continuing to pray for peace for you and all of your family.

  18. Libby I believe that Jennifer is happy and pain free. With God. But I don’t for a minute believe that this means she has forgotten you. She loves you just as much as she always has. The love you two shared can never die or diminish. It just isn’t possible. And when you see her again it will be as if no time has passed for her. Xx

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