the longest line

This time last year Tony and I were on the best trip of our lives. A trip to surprise trip to Disneyland with just Jennfier and baby Charlotte. She was 7 months old so totally easy and flexible. The trip was all about Jennifer, what she wanted to do and when she wanted to do it.

It was perfect.

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We had so much fun. She had so much fun. She was so happy to be all done with radiation. We thought this was just the start of a honeymoon period most kids with DIPG get.. a time to make memories and pack a lifetime in. We were so lucky to get gifted two incredible days there. One with a tour guide taking us through the crowded park and the other day with passes for her favorite rides.    We will forever be grateful for the generosity that allowed us to do every single thing she wanted. Easily.

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I wonder so much how she was feeling on this trip. Did she know? Could she tell that the cancer had grown? The last morning we did Goofys kitchen. She was so excited to meet the characters. To be able to eat all the great gluten free goodies they have there. But then suddenly she told me she was going to get sick. I picked her up and tried to run her to the bathroom. We didn’t make it. She threw up in the lobby. Right where people line up to go into the restaurant. She got both of us… and the ground. I felt so terrible for her. She tried so hard to hold it in.. to force me to put her down so it didn’t get on me.

A woman came into the bathroom to clean her shoe.. made some snide comment that I served right back to her. I think Jennifer was actually really happy with me thinking back on it. I think she was grateful in that moment that it never phased me… her throwing up or peoples reactions to any of it.  And we had a good laugh about it.

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Just like Jennifer, she went right back to the table and didn’t complain that she had missed the only princess at that meal. But just like Libby.. I went and found a manager and made sure she was visited by each and every character.

I love that spirit of hers. That bright shining that came from deep within her. Always. She always had that shine to her.

I love her face in this picture. She was in the middle of teasing me.
I love her face in this picture. She was in the middle of teasing me.

 

We really thought it was just after effects of radiation that made her sick on the trip. I really never thought.. never imagined she wouldn’t get a honeymoon period. Looking back now I see it was such huge denial.

We laughed so much over those few days together. We all fell in love with each other a little bit more. She got to see the parade from the best seats in the place and she got to meet all the princesses and then be made into one herself.

oh i miss you so much jennifer lynn.

so so so much.

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I told her on that trip. That we would take the other kids too one day. A special trip for each of them when they turned 6 or 7.  She was so pleased with the idea that they would get the time like she was.. I meant it to. Well I did then at least. I cannot imagine Disneyland without our first princess. .. I don’t know if we will ever be able to go back.

The way she was looking at herself .. so much promise of a future in that mirror.
The way she was looking at herself .. so much promise of a future in that mirror.

So today after naps we hopped in the car and headed to the local amusement park which is open for special night hours right now. For them because of her. We split up some so each boy could be in charge. Once I took Nicholas alone and then we swapped Charlotte so Tony could have solo time with Jonathan. It was good.

We got in line for the train ride.. . That line was just like my life is now.. and will be forever.

Waiting in a horrifically long line. Creeping forward painstakingly slowly. All I could do was try to make the wait a little fun. Make some memories and some jokes.. all while counting down until it was my turn to finally board that train.

The final wait. The last bit before my turn on the train came was more relaxed.. because I knew the end was near .. I just really didn’t worry too much about the wait since I knew it would be ending soon.

Then it was time. I boarded that train. And the time on the ride went so much faster than it felt like would. Waiting in line the space between pick ups seemed to drag on. But it was different when I was the one on the ride..  Being the one on the train made time move just a little bit different.

here i am jennifer

waiting in the longest of lines

the one to see you again

i hope the ride is so fast

i hope the colors are so beautiful where you are

i’m trying baby

to make the most of my time here in line

line11 …until there is a cure…

 

 

 

12 Responses to “the longest line”

  1. I pray you enjoy your time in the line, even if you are aching for the ride at the end of it.

    You matter, Libby. Jennifer matters. <3

  2. Sending love every day and continuing to remember and say Jennifer’s name. So many thoughts, too much to say, but for now : Lots of love to all of you.

  3. i love every single one of these happy, beautiful photos! i so wish this long line is fast and full of happiness and glitter!

  4. Maybe that’s a good way to look at this life when we have experienced tragedy and loss. A line that sometimes seems to be endless. The wait can be excruciating and painful at times. When we are able to focus on “having fun” and making the time easier for others, the waiting is less awful. And we learn to actually embrace the good moments, especially when we are sharing them with people we love. You are growing and healing, Libby, moment by precious moment. And Jennifer is so proud of you, just like she was when you stood up to the rude lady in the bathroom. Much love to you all, and may you continue to learn ways of blooming in this longest of lines in the new year. Big hugs and God bless you!

  5. I hope this line goes really fast for you Libby. It will be just seconds for Jennifer. I am still here reading think of you all always. Say Jennifer’s name. My love to you all today and everyday.

  6. So beautiful. The pictures, her smiles, your memories. I’m hoping and praying that the line is filled with much laughter and love and moves quickly for you, Libby! Always thinking about you 6.

    Jennifer<3

    XO

  7. Libby,

    I am so very sorry it was Little Angel Jennifer’s time to go to Heaven. Your writings, although heart breaking, are absolutely amazing and poetic. God is speaking through you. Someday … until there is a cure …

    Love,

    Jan

  8. What a beautiful smile Jennifer has and the pic of her teasing you is adorable. I pray she stands by your side and gives you many signs. LOVE4JLK

  9. We are all waiting in line…some in short ones, some in longer ones…but we all stand In the lifeline to bring us to our families in the end which will be a new beginning for you and your beautiful, sweet Princess Jennifer…until there is a cure

  10. I want to hear what the woman said about her shoe and how you responded. I want to learn from your wit and your chutzpah. Love you, Libby, for your incredible defense of children and unswerving rightness in all situations.

  11. Dear Libby,
    You don’t know me, as I am just one of those people that started reading your blog from back around December of 2013. I read it everyday still. I look at those pictures of your beautiful little Jennifer and I cannot help but wonder why? My heart aches for what your family has been through and continues to go through in the face of this unbelievable grief. You inspire me so much to help make a difference in pediatric cancer. Your love for your beautiful little girl is so evident, and hers for you, in all the pictures you share. Keep your chin up and be proud of what you are doing and and how much you’ve done already. I hope and pray with all my heart that the “ride” at the end of your long line will be well worth the wait 🙂 Lots of love and peace to your beautiful family.
    Love, Kath

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