Thursday, June 24, 2010

Telling Z....

Wow, I have been gone a long time......

I want to start by thanking everyone for their comments, prayers, cards, donations and love.  It has been a very hard month but we have been so appreciative of all of those around us (near and far, real and virtual).  I apologize if I have not returned your emails yet, called you back or been to your blog for awhile.....I will.  I have been trying to catch up around the house, spend some quality time with my family, write hundreds of thank you notes (no exaggeration) and continue to keep my beautiful sister in-law's memory alive through the websites I have created for her.  It has been a bit overwhelming but we are doing our best.

I wanted to share with you now the difficult task of telling Z that his Auntie Kiki, his godmother, had passed away.  We took the advice of a good friend and did not tell him right away (thanks Sey).  This ended up being very good advice because he initially went with me to S's parents house for a few nights (we were in a hotel) and then left us to spend the weekend with my parents at the lake while we attended the wake and funeral.  If we had told him right away, it might have been very difficult for him to leave us for the weekend.  It also gave us time to chat and figure out the best way to tell him.

Over a week a half had passed before we told Z.  We were successful in shielding him for that long from most comments and conversations.  On Thursday of last week, somebody said something in front of him and he looked at me with a look of confusion.  I called s and told him that we had to tell Z that night (we had hoped to wait until the weekend) and so that is what we did.

Right before dinner (the baby was in bed) we called him over to the couch.  Still unsure of what we would say (even though we had done so much reading and talked with a therapist) we sat him down.  We reminded him of the book I had read to him about cancer (it was for children and compared the disease to weeds in a garden) and discussed his Auntie's sickness.  We then talked about Noni and how she was an angel in heaven and told him that Kiki was with Noni now because she could no longer fight the weeds in her garden.  Z looked worried, sad and puzzled and I began to cry.  He asked if she would be able to come back and we told him that she would not be able to come back as a person but she might be able to visit us as a butterfly, bird or dragonfly.  We said that the next time one of these beautiful creatures is hanging around us, it might be Kiki (I have a post about this for another time).  At this point S was choked up and I was sobbing.....then the lights went out!  They quickly came back on and S and I knew it was Auntie Kiki trying to lighten the mood :)  She was successful and we went on to answer Z's questions without the tears.  (Thanks Kiki!!)

After lots of hugs, we went on to eat our dinner.  Z asked if he could say grace.  His usual grace goes like this......

"Thank you for this food, please help Kiki get better and please help find Buzz Lightyear"

He started his grace off in the same manner as always but when he got to the Kiki part he stopped.  He looked at us and we told him that he could still pray for Kiki and that he could say that he hopes that she is happy up in Heaven.  He added this in and then prayed for Buzz.

Since this night, he has had some nightmares, some worried moments (he thought that I might die because my back has been hurting) and some interesting questions.  Despite all of this, I am so much happier now that he knows because we can openly discuss our feelings and talk about Kiki and how much we miss her and share all of the wonderful stories we have about her.  This past weekend we were down visiting S's family again and Z was given a Batman stuffed animal that had belonged to Kiki.  He now treasures this toy and tells everyone who will listen that it was his Auntie Kiki's.

He is a special boy and we will make it our mission to help him remember his wonderful auntie.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Goodbye Sweet Angel

Good night my angel time to close you eyes
And save these questions for another day
I think I know what you've been asking me
I think you know what I've been trying to say

I promised I would never leave you
And you should always know
Where ever you may go
No matter where you are
I never will be far away

Good night my angel now it's time to sleep
And still so many things I want to say
Remember all the songs you sang for me
When we went sailing on an emerald bay

And like a boat out on the ocean
I'm rocking you to sleep
The water's dark and deep
Inside this ancient heart
You'll always be a part of me

Do do do do...

Goodnight my angel now it's time to dream
And dream how wondeful your life will be
Someday your child will cry and if you sing this lullaby
Then in your heart there will always be a part of me

Someday we'll all be gone
But lullabies go on and on
They never die that's how you and I will be 

-Billy Joel

Good Night Sweet Kiki......Your soul has been set free and you shall suffer no more.  
I Love you now and forever! 

Sunday, June 6, 2010

I Just Can't Imagine....

I want to thank all of you for your prayers, kind words and donations for my sister in-law.  Kiki is an amazing person and seeing her in the ICU, helpless, is just so unbelievably sad.  The other morning I got to have her all to myself for a bit.  I shared some letters and cards that I had received for her and told her all about her facebook messages and the emails I had gotten. I talked about the kids, gave her Z's flying kiss and told her how much I loved her.

As I looked at her, laying in the hospital bed, I could still not come to terms with the fact that I may never hear her speak again.  Her beautiful voice might never sing another note or act out another scene.  My beautiful "big sister" is most likely leaving this world and there is nothing I can do about it.  The damn cancer has robbed her of her thirties, has crushed her dream of becoming a mother and is taking her from this world much too early. 

It is so difficult for me to rap my head around it all.....I still feel like she could call at anytime and share the latest family gossip or call to check up on the kids.  As I sit here sobbing, I think about how Christmas, Easter and the Fourth of July will never be the same.......she was such a huge part of all of those holidays and I don't know what we are going to do without her.  My Z is losing his "Fairy Godmother", his fun and energetic Auntie Kiki....C will never get to play with her Auntie Kiki and will be too little to remember her.  The whole thing is heart breaking.

Kiki, I love you and hope that you find peace soon.  I can't picture life without you but I can promise you that I will do everything in my power to make sure that you are celebrated each and every day.  I promise to live my life the way you would have wanted to live yours and want you to know how proud of you I am and how very important you are to me!  I love you Big Sis!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I Need Your Prayers Tonight....

I know I have been missing lately and I wish it were for happier circumstances.  Sunday night, my beautiful and vibrant sister in-law went into cardiac arrest and is now in a coma.  She has suffered for four long years with stage for breast cancer.  She was only 32 when she was is all so tragic.

K is more than a sister in-law to me, she is my big sister.  Being the oldest in the family, I never had th
e priveledge of having an older sibling.  When I started dating S back in 1998, K quickly took on this role and I now I can't imagine life without her.  We share books, plan the holidays together, love to gossip, both like to shop and we love to spend time at the lake together....we do all the things that big sisters do without the fighting.  It is wonderful.

Now my big sister is fighting for her life, hanging on by a thread and there is nothing I can do about it.  It is awful, unfair and seeing her today was very hard.  My bright, energetic, loveable K was lying there helpless and withdrawn......words can not describe the pain I feel as I think about her and everything that K's husband, my in-laws, S and his sister A are going through right now. 
For the past three and a half years K has led everyone to believe that she was in remission.  She decided to suffer quietly with her husband while the rest of the world thought she was cancer free.  She made this decision because she was tired of being pitied and did not want the cancer to run her life...she wanted to be herself, not a person with a disease.  Starting in January, her health took a horrible turn.  Still not wanting people to know what was going on, she hid away and only her close family knew the pain and suffering that she was dealing with.  It wasn't until the beginning of May that she finally allowed us to share with people what she was going through and allowed us to start fundraising for her.

Over the last month I have had the honor of leading the fundraising effort.  It has been amazing to see all of the love and support that has been given to K.  We have even had perfect strangers come forward and donate money, it has been a beautiful but difficult experience for me.  People have shared pictures, letters, stories, notes, poems, paintings, songs and so much more....I have placed all of these on a website and have been able to share them with the family and K.  I have been given a great gift through this fundraising effort, I have been able to see how many lives K has touched and how special she is to so many people.  I am proud to say that in four short weeks we have raised almost $10,000 (still a ways away from the $100,000 of out of pocket medical expenses they have had over the last four years....but still very helpful). 
So tonight I sit her crying, praying and hoping for a miracle.  I would be so appreciative and grateful if you could also add K to your prayers.  Right now she needs as many people praying for her as possible.

Thank you and good night!