Category: Our Story

What’s it like- living with child loss

Whats it like? What’s it like to be you? I see it. I think that is probably the number 1 question I see burning behind people’s eyes that is never asked. Though it’s hinted to… in the escape of words like I can’t imagine. .. So I’ll tell you.. It’s showing up to drop my son off late at school.. walking him into the cafeteria to get one last hug as he drops off his lunch box. Something is going on.. lots of kids and fun. Its seeing a mom who asks if I am ready for the craziness.. It’s asking what and hearing that its the 3rd grade arcade day. Its the wonder for just a moment.. until you can feel the ground move beneath you.. She should be in there.. And the gym that was moments ago just 15 feet away somehow becomes miles away.. at the end[…]

earthquake country

I live in earthquake country.. I always have.. but now its more. Now I exist in it too.. I am always ready.. vigilant for any potential tremors. But that’s what makes them so scary .. you never know when they will hit.. Even when they start.. you just never know how high they will register on the Richter scale.. I already know. As my fingers hit the keyboard I already know .. this might be one of those posts I never publish.. Because I know whats eating at me. .. something I struggle too admit to myself .. let alone out loud.. My jealousy. My heartbreak in the middle of others joy. The birth of my niece. Yes of course seeing a healthy baby… of remembering what it was like to first have my Jennifer placed in my arms.. Of wanting so desperately to go back.. to get those years[…]

do you get counseling..

I decided to blog about some FAQs and comments that I get..In particular I notice that as time goes on I get more judgmental themed comments on the blog. Im ok with that.. I have a thickish skin. .. But i’d be lying if I said it wasn’t part of the reason I blog publicly less .. I still need the release I get from writing.. but it does make me more hesitant to share.. I am realizing more and more how misunderstood the way I am choosing to do this whole grief thing is.. So I figured why not tackle a few of those constants.. or the ones that have bugged me the most. ** “Do you get counseling, you need counseling**”. I try to explain it this way. One. I need lots of counseling, A “ish-ton” one might say. So I get it in a mulititue of ways.[…]

live again

I set up a get together with other local bereaved moms.. It was a great experience for me and I hope for them also. I was there with a table full of woman who all wish we didn’t have a seat.. We came to the table for different reasons.. sons and daughters.. cancer and accidents and a multitude of other medical causes .. we all took our seats at this table at different times. I took my seat more recently than some.. but earlier than others. So I feel like I had a unique view.. one of what the future may hold.. and one of what my past did. And I realized I have been … well there really is no word for it.. Just like there is no word for a parent that has lost a child I think there is no word for a parent that is ..[…]

upside to child loss.

There are side effects of child loss, but I have learned lately not all are negative. And none of them are stagnant. They all seem to be, at least for me, on a pendulum. I realized today I miss some of the moderation that life used to hold. That middle ground of normalcy.. Maybe it will return.. Maybe 10-15 years .. But right now I can’t imagine that it will. I realized today I am always on edge.. Not a razor sharp emotional breakdown edge.. or losing my shit edge but rather just tight? or guarded? or maybe waiting and prepared?.. Not sure the right way to explain it. . I just know I am pretty much never just hanging loose in the middle anymore. .. Because I know that thing that causes people to say ” I can’t imagine it” or ” thats my worst fear” .. I know the[…]

a letter to my surviving kids

Kids. This ones for you. I recently said I was excited to get old. That my age only bothers me because I am still so young. One of my brothers is turning 40 this week and I thought I know exactly what I will think when I blow out my 40 candles.. The same thing I think every year now.. One year closer… a little bit closer to my grave. And that makes me happy.. Then I was asked about my other kids.. Do I worry about how those feelings might impact them? So kids. This one. This ones all for you. .. ..your mothers love letter to you.. They all are really though.. Just not in the typical fashion. Every word I type here is my fight for you. My digging into the infection that is grief. A wound created by the loss of your sister. One that if left[…]

flawed but whole

I have these positive posts planned. These things I want to write about laid out in my head and I get excited for it. Excited to explore different avenues of myself and my thoughts and my heart in the way that blogging allows me to. But.. my body seems to know. I write a lot now on Thursdays. My Mom watches 3 of the bigger kids .. will it be like that for the rest of my life.. will I forever stumble over how to refer to my kids. 3 bigger,  the kids,  the girls,  .. its a constant and subtle stab.. one is missing one is missing.. So my parents have them on Thursdays. Its my work day. I try to fill the day with all things Unravel.. and at night we go to counseling. Somewhere along the line I started writing while Bridgette slept. And now its part of[…]

growing up with grief..

Grief has a place in our family.. at our table. Its kinda like a sibling to them.. One that grows and changes right along with them. Parenting a child through grief is something I never really imagined myself having to do. And most of the time I don’t feel well equipped to do it. Its much harder than I thought it would be. I am so grateful I am not alone in doing it though.. I feel so deeply for parents that lose their spouse and have to face this alone. .. Right now its Nicholas. His struggles are deep and loud and real. The disappointment he felt flipping through the most recent yearbook and realizing his sister wouldn’t be in it.. The look of settled in disappointment in his eyes. It was unnerving and unnatural to see that in a boy of his age. I ached for him. I[…]

a ocean for mothers day

I think grief is like the ocean. .. Powerful and constant. It comes in and goes out. Sometimes a storm passes and it becomes violent and dark. .. sometimes it is calm and peaceful. But it is always moving, always changing, and you have to keep kicking or you will drown. That can be exhausting.. I don’t want to drown. I don’t want to be pulled too far out from them.. my shore.  I made it through another mothers day..  I woke up to that swollen feeling in my eyes that let me know I was crying in my sleep. My mind is merciful in forgetting  what I was dreaming about.. The day was good. Blemished and bruised but so very beautiful. I am grateful to this blog for that. By digging and releasing I was able to be open to the beauty of the day versus just obsessing on the[…]

Guest Blog: Carmen Murray

October was about Jennifer. Thank you for that. It was this mothers hope that my daughter could motivate and inspire .. “forTHEMbecauseofher” but I have so many more children that make up my “her” The kids that motivate and inspire me to fight for a cure. Kids that make me want to be a better mom in every way..  This month we are honored to introduce you (both through blogs and social media) to just a few of these children.  Allow me to introduce Carmen and Ty. Carmen is one of our board members and a woman I am proud to call my friend and Ty…. Ty is simply incredible.  “But your son is all better now….. because he doesn’t have cancer anymore right?” I can’t tell you how many times I have heard this phrase or something similar to it after people find out about my son’s battle with cancer.  While I totally understand why someone[…]