February 28, 2018 at 6:28 pm | Posted in Love | Leave a comment
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Please Help Save Lives

February 11, 2018 at 6:52 pm | Posted in Grief, Love | 3 Comments
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Jake and Sawyer’s short lives have taught me many tough lessons.  One, which I already “knew” (but now know with much greater depth and understanding) is how terrible losing a loved one really is, whether it is a child, a parent, a spouse, a grandparent, or anyone who you are close to.  That loss and the grief that comes with it is so powerful and completely life-altering.

A family that I hold dear to my heart experienced an untimely loss of a beloved son, husband, brother and uncle, a man who always showed kindness not just to me and my family, but to everyone he encountered in his own community and in his job as doctor.   His death was so preventable and such an unnecessary tragedy — he was riding his bicycle with a riding group (he was an avid and well-trained rider), when a driver hit him from behind.  The driver was distracted by his cellphone.

We all get distracted by our phones and other devices, but there is no reason for driving while distracted.  Whatever that driver was doing could have waited — or if it was so important, he should have pulled over and handled it.  But when you are driving, you put yourself and everyone around at risk if you do not pay full attention to the road and your driving.

If you are ever asked to “please help save lives,” you are likely to think, “of course, but how?” Well, the family of that wonderful man, and particularly his wife, are trying to make sure that no other family suffers a loss such as they have, and it creates a simple way for you to truly help save lives.  In Georgia, legislation has been proposed to help prevent distracted driving.  House Bill 673 sets up commonsense provisions and rules, and penalties that hopefully would make anyone think twice before allowing themselves to become distracted by their phone or other device while driving.  They are pushing hard to see the legislation become law, and have gotten plenty of local media coverage to try to convince everyone to support this bill.

I am on board and I have contacted my elected officials to tell them to please help save lives — please pass HB 673.  If you are in Georgia, I hope you will contact your legislators in the state house and senate and tell them you support this bill too.  You can Find your Legislator at this link.  And if you live elsewhere, contact your elected officials and tell them they should be doing more to put a stop to distracted driving too.  We have already lost far too many wonderful children, parents, spouses and loved ones to distracted driving.  We can all help save others from knowing what I, and so many others, already know all too well.

 

Sawyer and the strawberry

December 28, 2017 at 4:58 pm | Posted in Grief, life after loss, Love, Sawyer | 6 Comments
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December 26th is the date on Sawyer’s death certificate. I am not sure when exactly he died but Evan and I kissed him good night for the last time on December 25th.

No one ever really knows how long we have between birth and death. I am very thankful for the time we did have with Sawyer.

Buddhist story:
“A man traveling across a field encountered a tiger. He fled, the tiger after him. Coming to a precipice, he caught hold of the root of a wild vine and swung himself down over the edge. The tiger sniffed at him from above. Trembling, the man looked down to where, far below, another tiger was waiting to eat him. Only the vine sustained him.

Two mice, one white and one black, little by little started to gnaw away the vine. The man saw a luscious strawberry near him. Grasping the vine with one hand, he plucked the strawberry with the other. How sweet it tasted!”

There are many interpretations of this story.  I like to think of the strawberry as the present.  One of the tigers is birth and the other death.

I wish I had more time to spend with Sawyer.  If I had known that time (and the tiger of death) were present and against us that Christmas night when we kissed him goodnight, I am sure that I would have never stopped kissing him.  Love and miss you sweet Sawyer.

Sawyer

gone but never forgotten

November 17, 2017 at 8:18 am | Posted in Grief, Love | 10 Comments
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Sweet Sawyer

Sawyer,
I miss you every single day but today I miss you extra.  Today eight years ago you were born.  It is (or should be) your 8th birthday.  How do I get through your 8th birthday without you?  I am not so sure.  I know I did it last year and the year before, so somehow I will get through today as well.

I am wearing purple for World Prematurity Day.  You were full term but all of your siblings were premature so I think you would be okay sharing your special day with them.  You were born on your scheduled C-section date and we could not wait to meet all 8 lbs of sweet wonderful you!

Wherever you are, I hope you know how much you are loved and missed.   As always, I will look for you in my dreams.

 

Mother’s Day when your child is dead

May 12, 2017 at 1:14 pm | Posted in Grief, Love | 4 Comments
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There are no rules for Mother’s Day without your child/children.   We miss our children every day but some days are harder than others.  This is one of those days.

  • Remember that you are and always will be a mother.
  • Know you are not alone.  This club has many members.
  • The baby/child loss club is not the only one out there.  There are those without their mothers on Mother’s Day and countless other loss clubs.   Buddha’s story about the mustard seed sums it up perfectly – “in the whole city, in the whole world,  there is not one family, not one person free from the certainty of death.  It is the way of all living things – we must at some time leave one another.”
  • Do one thing (no matter how big or small) for yourself – even if that one thing is crying or showering.
  • Honor/remember your child.
  • Hug your family and friends a bit tighter.
  • Talk about your child.  Say their name (or names).
  • Be kind to yourself.

I hope that you all have the best day possible.

 

Hope

April 18, 2017 at 2:18 pm | Posted in life after loss, Love | 4 Comments
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Some days hope is hard to find.  On my running route, I have discovered a few hints that there is always hope.  One time I stumbled upon this sign of hope:

And, on another run I came across this one:

The signs are on telephone poles but that is okay with me.   I will take hope however and wherever I can find it.

On my run the other day, I noticed that one of the signs had been painted.

I like to believe that I can still catch a glimpse of  hope even though it is now harder to find.

 

 

“Don’t cry because it is over. Smile because it happened.” Dr. Seuss

November 17, 2016 at 1:52 pm | Posted in life after loss, Love | 7 Comments
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Sawyer,
Today is World Prematurity Day so I am wearing purple in memory and in honor of your oldest brother Jake and all the other babies born into this world too soon.  Today is Georgia Gives Back day so I just drove food to a shelter and will be making donations in honor of you and your siblings.

Today is also the day that we welcomed you to the world! Today I want to celebrate wonderful little you.  Today I am going to read all the congratulations emails we received after you were born because last night I discovered your Dad kept them all (and I have never seen them).  Today I will give presents to your brother and sister for your birthday because there do not seem to be any rules on how to celebrate your 7th birthday without you – so,  I am trying to make up my own.  Today I will try to smile, not to cry (but please forgive me if I do).

Today you gave me the gift of being your mama and for that I am forever grateful to you my sweet Sawyer.

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Happy Halloween

October 31, 2016 at 4:28 pm | Posted in life after loss, Love | 2 Comments
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Happy Halloween from Mudkip (a type of Pokémon) and the Friendly Polka Dotted Monster!

Mudkip and the Friendly Polka Dot Monster

“One joy shatters a hundred griefs.”
– – Chinese Proverb

 

 

Wave of Light 2016

October 18, 2016 at 7:00 pm | Posted in life after loss, Love | 5 Comments
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We lit our candles on October 15.

candles-2016

This year and last year I made the candles we lit.  I made candles that were given out at the Atlanta Walk to Remember.  There is not much I can do to lessen the pain that a bereaved parent carries throughout their lifetime.  I am hoping that the candle makes their path a little brighter (even if it is only for a little while).

quote - candle - 2015

 

 

Wave of Light

October 14, 2016 at 4:44 pm | Posted in life after loss, Love | 4 Comments
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wave-of-light

Tomorrow is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.  As part of the day, everyone is invited to light a candle at 7 pm in all time zones, all over the world.  The idea is that if everyone lights a candle at 7 pm and keeps it burning for at least 1 hour, there will be a continuous wave of light.

Today and every day I miss Jake and Sawyer but tomorrow at 7 pm we will light candles.  This year I will once again hope that the light from all the candles will make the darkness of the unknown a little brighter.

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