Mom….don’t be mad….Oh if you were here I could just see your face.  You would be soooo pissed!!!  Because of course!  Heather just called and they are running late.  Oh why did she have to get that trait from our gene pool!  Why didn’t you give her your early for everything gene!!!!

I’m so sorry mom….so sorry…..I didn’t want to do tonight like this….please don’t let it ruin the night…..please don’t be mad at us……we are going!!

Love you Mom…..I’m trying…………but I am still me, and Heather is just like me…..late for everything……forgive us.




Trying hard….

Mom…tonight is the concert at Wheaton College that we went to last year.  My hands are shaking.  I’m nervous, anxious, and hoping this is the right thing to do.  We got through Thanksgiving fine — we talked about what we needed to get through the day.  Adam asked if we could sit in the dining room — he gets it — holidays are special!  Alex stayed with me while I cleaned up the table and told me how much he was thinking about you.  We did it!

Maybe I used up all my courage and strength over the weekend.  Now I have none left to get through tonight.  What have I gotten us into???

Will it be too much of a trigger for me? 

Will it be too hard to see the remaining 3 look-alike sisters together?

Will Heather be here on time?

Will traffic be bad?

Will we meet Fran, Keith and Vera on time?

Will we finish dinner in time to get to the concert?

Will we find parking?

Will my hands STOP SHAKING??

What we shared…

Mom…you are/were the best mom ever.  Dennis and I both told you so on many occasions.  I really mean it…and I am so grateful that we lived so close together for so long.  When you and I both had issues with our Johns, we went through it together!  When you and I both were alone, we went through it together.  We shared the boys, anatomy flash cards, kindergarten sight words, everything.

 I’m sorry we had so many shared sorrows, but it made us closer.  Those tragedies brought us together as much more than mother daughter.

We are survivors Mom.  We are strong women.  We are loving, forgiving, hard working women.  And I will carry on without you.  I’ll do my best to be the mom and woman you taught me to be.

I love you and I’m so grateful that I have/had you as my mom.



CCR and Elvis — thinking of you in heaven…..?

Hi Mom!

Adam and I are spending time together tonight.  He’s playing music on his laptop and playing Minecraft.  So far, he has played Eminem, CCR, and Elvis’ Love me Tender.  This kid sure does have a broad taste in music.  Hmmmm…..wonder where he got that, Mom? 

You would have been proud of us tonight!  I came home from work, made dinner, took Adam’s friend home, then Adam and I both did our homework!

I made your famous casserole tonight.  I had to stop making it for awhile this year….no one would eat it.  I think for Adam especially it was too much of a trigger for his feelings about your death.  Tonight he ate it just like he used to for you!  I made a double recipe and have just enough left for him to eat tomorrow.  I know it sounds silly, but it sure made me feel good.

I’ve gotten my homework done for the pst week and part of it’s done for next week.  Do you see what I am doing to avoid my feelings of loss and grief?  As long as I keep busy I don’t miss you too much.  That’s why I’m here at the kitchen table with my laptop….I’m forcing myself to face it.  I’m forcing myself to miss you fully.

But you know what?  Others have reminded me that I need to think about the joy of knowing you are in such a better place!  So, here goes….I am so happy for you that your struggle is over.  I’m so glad you have a body that is perfect now.  No more pain.  No more pills.  No more feeling ugly — I hope!  You fought so hard…for so long, Mom.  God took care of you and all those worries you had about pain and morphine.  For you, time will go fast.  For us, it’s dragging on and on and on…..

I also know that we will be with you again one day.  (to me that sounds so hollow and empty….why don’t I “feel” that one?)

Are you really there, Mom?  With God?

What’s heaven like?

Are you with Baby JJ?  Is he still a baby?

Do you know what’s going to happen with this country?

Do you know when I’m going to die?

See, there I go again….slipping into the negative thinking.  I don’t really want to do that but it happens.

This is hard….being without you……




How long have we been eating gyros?  I went to our favorite gyro place tonight.  I miss sharing this with you.  It’s still good…but it’s not the same to enjoy it alone.  For the last 3 years we couldn’t share any food anyway…except for that one Easter at Red Lobster…but that’s another story….

Your memory is everywhere, Mom.  Even there.  The guy behind the counter asked how you were doing — then he immediately remembered that you had died.  He came around the counter to talk to me.  It was so nice….you know I’ve always kinda had a crush on him right?

I remember when you had a car accident with him!  How funny!  For months he was so embarressed by that accident.  You never did get a free dinner outta that did you?

He is such a nice man.  He sounds like a great dad and husband.  He asked about the boys — wanted to know if they were spending time with their dad even.  He encouraged me to just keep loving my boys….he said that if any of my blood is in their veins, they will be great men of compassion and love.

Why is that whenever someone is kind to me, I cry?

I felt so foolish…but then again….I didn’t care…I’m a wounded heart…

Missing you as always….


Hi Grandma! It’s me, Alex!


Hi Grandma,

Hi Grandma it’s Alex! I miss you, I sometimes come home on the bus and I kind of sigh… Normally I expected to come home and either see you waiting for me, or watching Jeopardy in your room. Know I normally feel alone sometimes when I come home and you are not there… Normally it is Adam who is being obnoxious… I feel really bad because the last words I said to you was “See you when you get home.” I never said I love you, well here it is, I love you and miss you so much.

I really love 5th Grade, it is so much fun, I got to meet so many new people!! The Adventure Club is alot of fun too, I get to play doge ball alot!! I wish you were here to see how much I have advanced in keyboarding and in my school work! I remember the last thing we did together, we were talking in your room watching Jeopardy, with the college kids! I really miss you, I know I keep saying that but hey, if I mean it then I mean it…

Love You and Miss You!


Thanksgiving is next week? oh crap….

Mom…I miss you…I’m listening to Bob Dylan tonight.  (Blowin’ in the Wind…) Thanksgiving is approaching quickly.  I am a little worried about how I do this without you.  We always planned a menu, made a shopping list…together.  This year I have to do it alone.  The only other time I did this by myself was when you lived in Seattle.  But even then, I had John’s family to share the holiday with. 

Maria pointed out that my boys are my family now.  I need to embrace that.  I need to start a new tradition to replace the ones you and I had created.  (Like a Rollin’ Stone…)  

So, I’m going to borrow from last year.  We went to the Salvation Army Staff Band concert last year.  You were so sick.  You were at the end of the row where your sisters were sitting.  I looked at each of them – so healthy and strong.  Then I saw you.  Frail, thin, cold, pale…I stopped looking. 

This year I’m bringing my boys to that same concert.  It’s a way for me to remember you and to enjoy the memory of that concert with you.  I know the boys are not too excited about it, but I want to honor your memory by doing this each year.  

 I don’t want anyone to forget how you grew up in the Salvation Army church.  I don’t want my boys to forget that your mom and dad went to that church.  I don’t want to forget how you and your sisters played in the Salvation Army band.  I will do this to remember…I hope the boys understand…

 (Subterranean Homesick Blues….your ring tone!)

 We will work through this together – the boys and me.  Alex is here watching me as I write.  He has such a great heart so full of love.  He expresses himself easily.  He would like to write you a letter too!  Watch for that one soon!

 Love and grief are two sides of a coin.  I learned that with Baby JJ’s death.  If you risk your heart loving someone, you also risk the pain that comes when they leave.  It is so worth it.  My love for you is so deep, so constant, so painful.  I’m embracing all of it tonight.

 (Knock Knock Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door…is that what you did Mom?)

 Love you…