Tag: childhood cancer

is 3 real?

Tomorrow morning I wake up to a 3 year old little girl… and it makes me sick to my stomach. and really really angry. I, like all moms, get a touch melancholy about their birthdays.. about how quickly time passes once you are a mom.. But my ridiculous decorating the night before their birthday has helped it become a fun night.. Birthday eve. The other kids get to stay up and help decorate and wrap presents. I make the birthday kid a birthday chair horrifically decorated in balloons and streamers.. Its made me happy to have them turn a year older. A day all about them. . and I like giving them that. Nothing expensive.. just attention and traditions. I’m usually excited about their birthdays. .. even after Jennifer died I still have loved.. maybe even more if thats possible.. decorating and getting the house all ready after the birthday[…]

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[…]

forgiveness for mothers day

Another mothers day is coming. .. I dread it. And then I feel so much guilt over that. I still have my amazing mom and I know so many others that don’t. .I am lucky not just to still have a mom.. but to have her be MY mom and my kids Coco. I am a mother to 4 of the most incredible people you could ever hope to meet. They love me. They will want to show me they love me… in simple and often sticky ways. ..but .. the one that made me a mommy. The one that bestowed the most important title on me is missing.  I remember that first year so well. And that first Fathers day. How surreal it was after years of infertility.. 5 losses.. We finally got to celebrate. Tony and I promised each other we would always make a big deal out[…]

contagious

Its not contagious. Thats one of the early things you tell a child about cancer. As their friend/sister is battling.. You can’t catch it from them. Seems like a good thing.. But maybe not… In New York we went to the American Museum of Natural History. One exhibit I wanted to see was the one on disease. I didn’t expect it to impact me so emotionally.. But it did. Silent tears fell .. just a few.. I remember I had my arms wrapped around me.. tighter and tighter… I guess thats what I do. I instinctively hold myself.. I don’t think I ever did that before.. is it you? do you make me do that now? I had given Bridgette to Tony so I could really read each sign. .. and tears started to fill my eyes. So many thoughts .. anger and sadness piling up. And surprising me. I[…]

NYC

Life moves so quickly sometimes. I thought while I was in New York I would carve out time to blog, but we were so busy I didn’t. And then coming home I have just been trying to get the house stuff and kids in order. So for those that don’t follow on Facebook (and if you don’t you should!) Tony, Bridgette and I went to New York to give money to a few labs as well as meet with additional ones we are considering funding and a few other East Coast foundations. I went through a lot of surprising emotions on the trip.. Just even being there was bittersweet. Its always been a dream of mine to visit New York. But we chose to have me be a stay at home mom and figured there would be no reason to travel that way for a long time. Then Jennifer got[…]

cool kids table

I’m jealous. Of things I never ever would have imagined feeling jealousy over. But cancer has changed me. Losing my daughter has changed me. I see the bonds other cancer families have created through time spent wandering the halls of the hospital and I want that. When I see them getting together.. those surviving and those still fighting a feel like I am walking around the school cafeteria with a tray in my hand.. with only one table to sit at. Most of the tables filled with parents who haven’t carried a cancer diagnosis and they look away and down when I walk close.. Truth is.. even when welcomed I can’t seem to figure out how to lay my tray down and sit anyways. The table is too smooth too shiny .. I see another one and a part of me longs so desperately to sit there too.. Kids that[…]

down the aisle

So I had my day planned.. . I was going to practice my speech for the upcoming MNO this weekend since I haven’t done it yet .. and then maybe carve out time to blog about how often people are surprised by my smiles.. and the joy they see in my family that is ALWAYS present.. …but Facebook had another idea for me.. Tony and I have talked lately about the love/hate affair we both have with the “on this day” option. The one that you can see old memories. .. moments that you shared a year.. or more ago on that day. Today scrolling through .. luckily after all the kids were at school or napping I was seized by the grainy image on my screen. .. with a caption of bitterly ironic words “not ready for this” Oh how I miss the safety of the sadness of watching my[…]

her same long fingers

Her fuzzy head was nuzzled against me. It was a very rare moment for me with Bridgette. My 5th child and by far our most difficult. .. sent to us from her sister in heaven that I can imagine giggling just a little for sending us this little high needs creature. So I was so appreciative of that moment. Her sleeping next to me as the sun came up .. giving me a few extra moments to lay in bed before starting our day. … but suddenly the carpet was swept out from under me. I was pulled away by my own mind from the simple beauty of the moment. To a time 2 years ago .. snuggling another fuzzy headed baby in my bed. Baby Charlotte was just 9 months when her sister left us for heaven. The day after I was broken. Battered. Quitting. I refused to get[…]

so i lied

I try to be honest. Especially in this new life we have been handed.. But I am finding I have to lie sometimes. To the outside world and my kids. With a smile that covers up the falling apart happening inside at that exact moment.. The surprising hard moments are often times the worst ones. The ones I am not ready for or expecting.. When the school year started. I used to walk Jonathan in every day. We would wait during assembly and watch him walk to the classroom. .. But the weather got colder and he wanted to be dropped off so we transitioned to that. Yesterday Nicholas asked if we could go in again. And Jonathan liked the idea so we did. I hope they don’t ask again. Two lines behind him I saw these kids.. The ones that are all strangers to me… but I know their[…]

unrelenting questions

My days seem to be so full of questions. Unrelenting questions that most will never ever have an answer. Sometimes I wonder.. why do things happen the way they do… Why does she send me the things I believe are signs the way she does. . A few days ago I was at Starbucks and saw a woman wearing a sweatshirt I knew from a distance was about brain tumors. .. I debating.. Maybe it was for an adult. Maybe she wouldn’t respond well to my coming up to her. .. but I did. Just like I asked all of you to do. I walked up to her and told her wy I approached her. Her granddaughter had a brain tumor. ..  And I felt a rush of kinship. .. Except it wasn’t. Her tumor was operable and treatable. .. And she was an adult. I think because of that momentary imaginary[…]