I Love You and that’s All I Really Know


Ronan. I’m pretty sure I had no clue the pain of missing you could become worse. I’m pretty sure I thought I had felt the worst of it. I was wrong. My first sign? Friday morning. What do you do on days like Friday morning? You sit outside of a Smart and Final for 2 1/2 hours, crying, sobbing, screaming, writing, and texting very intense things to one of our lovies. I believe I fully freaked out and considered driving to some rehab place to check myself in. I could not get out of my car. But I HAD to because, I had to bring drinks to Liam and Quinn’s class for their Halloween Party. OPPS! I forgot, “FALL FESTIVAL!” Halloween does not exist in schools here anymore. Thank God the real problems of the world are being solved. I finally got out of the car, while on the phone with our lovie, sobbing…. not making much sense. But I got the freaking apple juice I needed and hopped into the car. I drove to the boys’ school early and waited. I worked up the nerve to put on my “Hello! I’m just a normal mommy face! Nope! The love of my life did not just die. You must have the wrong person.” I wish it would have went down this way. I was helping set up with a mom whom I don’t know. She asked how our year was going. I should have just said, “Totally Awesome!” But I didn’t. I told her it was awful. I told her my almost 4-year-old had died only 5 and a half months ago. I was sobbing. I couldn’t keep it together at all. I tried my best. But I think I totally failed. I think I got a big fat “F,” on my report card. And it for once, was not for the word FUCK, but rather FAIL, instead. Quinn didn’t seem to notice that I had been crying when he came into the room, which is all that matters. I left Quinn’s room and skipped over to Liam’s classroom. You should have seen the way his face it up when I walked into his room. You should have felt the mama guilt wash over me instead of happiness. He was very intently reading a book. He was so focused. I sat and watched him. He was concentrating so hard on his book. My serious student. Your beautiful brother.

After I left the school I and headed down to PCH. Sandra needed some help with her Mia today. Even though I was a mess, going to help Sandra is something I am always happy to do. WTF PCH. Poor Mia and this damn button on the outside of her stomach which is used to administer her medication. The area itself is raw, gooey, red, and Mia has been screaming for months because she is in so much pain. After a lot of talk about what to do…. because we, the parents have learned….. we have to advocate for our kids’ well-being and make the choices and decisions because nobody knows the right answers. They finally gave Sandra a choice. A choice after she FOUGHT to get a choice to choose from. They told her they could remove old button and basically replace it with a tube that hangs out Mia’s stomach. Well, duh. Why wasn’t this done months ago. It seemed like such a simple answer, to relieve the rubbing on Mia’s stomach that was causing all of the pain and irritation. Her poor little skin has been rubbed raw for months while everybody just walked around, not knowing what to do about it. How is that acceptable in this day and age? Sandra looked at me and said, “What do you think?” She asked me in a room full of fucking DOCTORS when they should have been the one’s making the call. I just looked at her and told her, it wasn’t even a choice….. get the thing that is hurting her so badly, out of her. The end result was she had the GI Button taken out, and something else put in, to hopefully give Mia’s skin a break. But Sandra, had to make the fucking request. It wasn’t offered to her. I mean seriously? How is it acceptable when there were other alternatives out there, but nothing was put on the table? Doesn’t anybody care? And can I please vent about the doctors assistants that were in the room with us as well? Two of them. Two girls, who are sitting back, staring like Mia is a Zoo animal on display. They didn’t say a word, but just sat back, smiling…. grinning from ear to ear. All while Mia is screaming, crying and Sandra has her head buried in her hands as she fought to find the right words and questions to ask for her daughter. I so wanted to scream, “What the FUCK are you all smiling at?! Is something cute or funny? Is there an imaginary fluffy bunny rabbit, running around the room that I do not know about?!” For FUCKS SAKE!

After we left there, Sandra texted me to thank me for giving her the courage to stand up and advocate for Mia today. I texted her back and told her that she didn’t need me for her courage today, that she was a badass. She said that she felt more badass with me around. I told her nonsense, that I totally think it’s her sassy hot blond hair that she now rocks. The hair that has grown back from shaving it BALD when Mia was first diagnosed. Nothing says badass like a mama who has a bald head, because her baby has cancer. I’m so proud of her.

I’ve decided, it’s official. I do not live on this planet anymore. Even though my body does, my physical spirit does not. It’s long gone. Nothing makes sense. I know nothing about life except what I know at this exact moment which is this: I’m laying in your bed. You’re dead. I miss you so much. I miss you so much, that I don’t know what to do or how to be. I can’t talk much about this weekend. Fuck. Tomorrow is Halloween. Fuck again. I met a new baby boy tonight. Cooper Ronan Bunger. He was sweet. Only 3 months old. I took a picture of the two of us. He smiled in it. I think you told him to. I love you for that. I’m sorry I failed you. I’m sorry you’re dead. I’m sorry I have to do Halloween without you tomorrow. It feels like betrayal. I have to drive to Sedona to see Dr. Jo. Because I’m scared. Because I’m tired. So. Very. Tired.

P.S. I forgot one other thing, that I do know. That everyone, who reads this blog, should click on this link: http://www.arizonafoothillsmagazine.com/best-of-our-valley-2012/voting/150.html and vote for our Miss Katy. Because her store is full of awesome things like Garbage Pail Kids,Sugar Daddies, Fake PURPLE and PINK Glasses, Invisible Ink, Silly Putty, and Retro phones that you plug into your iPhone, while you talk on it. It totally makes you look like the raddest kid on the block, in an old school kind of way. It it is the one and only thing that make me laugh today. Thanks Miss Katy Grace.

Goodnight my babydoll. You were the most beautiful thing that’s ever been mine. I miss you. I love you. I hope you are safe.

xoxo

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27 Comments

  1. I have no words to ease your pain, but I am sending all the love and strength I can. I lay awake thinking about Ro last night thinking “if I can’t sleep thinking about him, how on earth is Maya expected to?” I’m sorry this weekend has been so hard on you. I’m sorry Ro had to leave…but I know he is always, always with you because that’s where he belongs.

    Reply
  2. Glenda

     /  October 31, 2011

    Maya… I think of you and Rockstar Ro every day!!! I was laying by the pool earlier today and I saw a hummingbird by one of the trees. “I thought of Ronan”

    I wish I can take your pain away :(

    Peace and strength mama bear.
    Hope you have sweet dreams with your beautiful blue eyed spicy monkey…

    XO

    Reply
  3. Jen

     /  October 31, 2011

    I am really sorry for how terrible your weekend was, I am amazed at Your strength and the determination you face each day with, I know you don’t feel that way inside right now but I had to let You know SO many of us see it and Learn from You everyday, we learn to slow down and not sweat the small stuff, we learn how to keep going when we want to give up and all because we see YOU doing so with all the indescribable pain you carry every minute. Just voted for Katie’s store, Thank You so much for giving us little ways to help! Wish I lived closer so I could be of more help.

    Reply
  4. Emma

     /  October 31, 2011

    Maya…l tried to email you but it didn’t go through. I can’t feel your pain, but l do feel my own. My daughter, mila, passed away in august. Sometimes l think l will go crazy from the pain…the only thing that stops me from doing anything is the thought of my mother losing her own daughter..me..and l wouldnt wish this on anyone. This has to get easier…love to you xx

    Reply
    • Daniella

       /  October 31, 2011

      Emma – I just wanted to say that I am so sorry about your daughter Mila :(.

      Reply
  5. Melissa Vendt

     /  October 31, 2011

    Oh Maya. I hate the pain that you are in, that Ronan is not with you, Woody, and his twin brothers. that Mia and her Mommy must fight so hard for life and suffer in doing so, that people are so uncomfortable that they can not cry, sob, help, show COMPASSION in the face of someone in such desperate need of it. I am terrified for you and your boys that you are in such an understandably bad place. Sending you love, hugs, strength, and moments of happiness to get you through the 1440 minutes that will be today. You can do it. Kick Inferno Fuckwad Bob’s ass, K?

    Reply
  6. Jaime H.

     /  October 31, 2011

    Beautiful Maya, I think of you and Ronan all the time. I am sorry he isn’t here with you, my heart truly aches for you. I am praying for you tonight, for strength and peace. Sending much love your way…xoxo

    Reply
  7. Stephanie Vargas

     /  October 31, 2011

    I will be thinking of you, sending you love, and saying prayers for you today. I’m so sorry and I wish I had magical powers to undo all you’ve been through and put Ronan back in that bed! Stupid holidays suck ass sometimes. I would skip my Halloween if it meant you got to skip it, too.

    Reply
  8. Jenny

     /  October 31, 2011

    Sweet Maya. I know you feel like you are breaking down, but I promise you that you have your shit so much more together than anyone else I have ever met. You are real, self-aware and a much needed reminder that love is not always butterflies. Love is raw – the tears, the screaming, the good, bad and the ugly. Love is fighting for what is right and never backing down.

    Reply
  9. Amy

     /  October 31, 2011

    I wish we really could all send you the strength you need. Maybe in some way we do. I pray that peace will find you…and I hold my children tighter.

    Reply
  10. Laura

     /  October 31, 2011

    Love you so much. Sorry things are so difficult. I’m glad you are going to Sedona. Our thoughts, love and prayers go out to your entire family.

    Reply
  11. Daniella

     /  October 31, 2011

    Maya, I wish I could take away some of your pain. I wish that so much. I don’t know if you are a Bon Iver fan or not but there is a music video for his song “Holocene” that is incredible. It is sad, scary, amazing, mischievous, beautiful, humbling and powerful …. so much like you and Ronan and your blog. This is strange (but what in this strange reality isn’t) but I love you. Even if knowing that people, strangers, love you doesn’t help right now (even if it makes you want to scream, “who the fuck cares if I am loved, I just want me son back”) you should still know that.

    Sending you thoughts of strength, love and lots of deep breaths.
    -Daniella

    Reply
  12. Jesus Fucking Christ! Someone do something to help Maya get through this. This is one of the most desperate posts. I know nothing will make things all better. Dr Jo…how about some action here? I think you are the best hope.

    Reply
  13. Oh Maya. There are no words, but my how I wish better things and better days and better hours for you and your men.

    Thinking of you today. And, stealing from one of your family’s favs, today “may the force be with you”.

    Stay strong.

    Marian

    Reply
  14. sara maurer

     /  October 31, 2011

    What you are doing Maya, is so AMAZING! You and Ronan are truly heros to other little ones suffering through cancer. You and Ronan are kicking some major cancer ass! I am so sorry you lost the love of your life…and you are now suffering. I know life is so unfair…because he should be here! Poor MIA, and her Mama…..I cannot imagine having someone sitting in the room smiling, as my child is hurting and scared. Where is the compassion? Sandy is fighting for her babys life….and that’s the treatment she gets? Things need to change. You are going to change things…with Ronan whispering in your ear. I know you can do it.

    I will be thinking of you all day, as I know this will be an extra tough day for you. I think we may have to do something special for someone today, in honor of Ronan. A simple act of kindness. I will make it my goal to make someone else aware of Ronans beauty….and story.

    We love you Maya, and wish the days were getting easier. I am so sorry for your pain.

    hugs….

    Sara

    Reply
  15. Colleen Fisher

     /  October 31, 2011

    My heart aches for you. I wish I could take away your pain, which is in every way real and justified. Sending you a big hug. I wish I could do more!

    Reply
  16. someone who cares

     /  October 31, 2011

    Maya – as open and honest as you’ve always been, I’m surprised you edited this post. I imagine you did it in response to a lot of scared and worried readers, like me, but it’s not going to remove our fears. Removing the words telling us that you “tried to leave this world” this weekend doesn’t remove our terror. I’m so glad it didn’t work, so so glad. Can you please take that as the ultimate sign from Ronan that he wants you here with his brothers instead of trying to leave them to be with him?? He IS safe and he’ll be fine waiting for you. However, Liam and Quinn would never be fine if they lost you too! Ask them, and I know they’ll tell you that you’re the one person they need above all others… above the rest of the world combined, they need YOU! It’s one thing to think about suicide, to wish you were dead too… that’s part of grief. But to act on those thoughts is not ok! Not when those two boys need you now more than ever! They would never get over losing you, especially not by choice. If you choose being with Ronan over staying with them, they’ll always feel inadequate… they’ll blame themselves for not being enough for you. They’ll feel guilt as long as there is breath in their bodies. I know because I lost someone I loved so very dearly to suicide. I still blame myself for not being enough for him… all his family and friends still do too. You promised us you would never do this, Maya… You assured us that you were just going through normal stages of grief by thinking about dying and suicide, but that you would never give in to those thoughts. But you did. You said you could’t talk much about this weekend except to say “I tried to leave this world. It didn’t work. Fuck.” Oh Maya… Please, please, please get some help NOW! Talk to Dr JoRo about it, but that isn’t enough. You’re in such a fragile state (understandably), but acting on suicidal thoughts means you need to be in intensive therapy in a hospital. It’s the only way to try to prevent another suicide attempt. It’s the only way to be sure you stick around for the twins, and for Woody. You’ve said you felt like you were having a nervous breakdown, and you might be… You might have. At any rate, you are exhausted beyond belief and need to be hospitalized for that if nothing more. It’s far better if the twins lose you very temporarily to a hospital than to lose you forever to death. Do it for them. Do it for Ronan, because he wants you to stay here too… He refused to take you with him this weekend, didn’t he? Believe that’s your biggest sign from him yet, and let Woody take you to the hospital. Please, Maya. Get help now and stay here where you are needed. Just look at what you did for Mia and her mom! Look at what you do every day to help others. Look what you are doing for childhood cancer. And most importantly, look in the eyes of your twins and your husband and you’ll see just how much you’re needed here! Know I say all this out of concern but not judgment. These are things I’d give anything to have said to my loved one before he took his life. I didn’t get a chance to help him, so I hope I can help you. Being left behind after suicide is a double tragedy because you lose your loved one and your self worth… and you’re left with both grief and guilt. Don’t do that to Quinn, Liam, and Woody. Get help now. I think you initially told us about your attempt because you were reaching out for help and support… Know you have it in spades here from your followers, but first and foremost from your family. All the best to you Maya. You can win this battle. You just have to want it badly enough. May you find peace – on this side.

    Reply
    • Thank you so much for your lengthy comment to Maya. I posted a very short one above the day i read the unedited version of the post. I was in panic mode for Maya and knew she needed hospitalization and intense therapy. I could not have said it better than your touching words. Thank you! Thank you! Be proud of yourself and know although you have suffered a great loss you are helping others.

      There have been two suicides in my family within just a couple months of each other. The devastation to the remaining family is unfathomable. Sad to say suicides often trigger more suicides.

      We are all here to support Maya on her journey.

      Reply
      • someone who cares

         /  November 2, 2011

        Elizabeth – Thank you for your kind reply to my post. I saw the post you made and was so glad you spoke up too. What I don’t understand is why everyone else – the people who saw the unedited post where Maya admitted to a suicide attempt over the weekend – haven’t spoken up too! To tell her how amazing and brave she is (and she is to have come this far!) while completely ignoring her intense frailty right now isn’t the support she needs. Why is everyone glossing over her admission of a suicide attempt?? Yes, Maya edited the post and removed her admission, but people still saw it. Everyone, to ignore Maya’s needs right now for intense therapy in the safety of a hospital setting is the last thing she needs! Speak up and tell her she’s got your support no matter what, as long as she keeps fighting! Wishing you were dead is a normal aspect of grief, but actually attempting suicide is NOT! Maya, we’ll only love you and support you more if you get help! No one will leave you! So don’t YOU dare leave, ok?? Please get help Maya, and someone update us on how she is. Please. We’re worried.

        And Elizabeth, I know I wrote a ton but it just poured out. As soon as I saw Maya’s post, I envisioned it being my family member… what if he had reached out like this and I ignored him?! It’s too late to save his life, but it’s not too late to save Maya… and to save her family in the process. Please know you don’t just have my sympathy for your losses, Elizabeth, you have my empathy. Be good to yourself and your heart as you journey toward healing. Maybe it’s because we’ve lost family to suicide that we were the only ones to panic and speak out?? I just hope Maya is ok… I hate this silence.

      • I am o.k. Today. Thank you for your concern. xoxo

  17. Beth

     /  October 31, 2011

    Oh Maya…not a day goes by that I do not think of you and your sweet Ronan! You are stronger and braver then you think…..an Inspiration to everyone around you. Sending you lots of love and prayers…everyday.

    Reply
  18. colleen

     /  October 31, 2011

    I follow your posts every day and you speak right from my heart. You say everything that I want to say. I need to get the balls you have to just tell it like it is sometimes. I did just want to share a concoction I made up when my daughters button irritated her skin so bad, they wanted to burn the granulation tissue off and that was just not an option for me. I mixed silvadene cream with bactroban on a q tip and applied around the tube and then put balmex around that, and applied a 2×2 drain sponge that i cut to fit around the tube and secured it with pink tape. I changed it morning and night and her granulation tissue and irritation went away. I just couldn’t NOT share with you to share with your friend. You are an inspiration to so many and do is your Ronan. xoxo

    Reply
  19. I wish that all those people who tell you that time will make things better were right. I want to yell everytime someone tells me “time heals all wounds” that it is crap. I don’t usually yell or even bother explaining to them how wrong they are. I just take a deep breath and wish that they never have to understand what it is like to have your child die and be left in this world without them.

    Sending you hugs and hope. Take care.

    Reply
  20. Sara

     /  October 31, 2011

    Maya….
    You saved my life…i am a mother of four, and they still have a mommy because you. I will save the details for the day I can share them in person, but, thank you….from the very depth of my soul……one perfect love…..

    Reply
  21. Jennifer Ann

     /  November 1, 2011

    Hi Maya I Just needed to come and let you know I still think of your sweet little boy very often and it always brings me to tears, and when I read the struggles you are going through trying to go on without him it makes me sob. Im so sorry, Its just not fair that children go through any of this. Im really no good with words but I just wanted to let you know you and Ronan have changed my life and I will always think of you both.

    Reply
  22. Jennifer

     /  November 1, 2011

    Saw this today and thought of you…
    The Cord

    We are connected,
    My child and I, by
    An invisible cord
    Not seen by the eye.

    It’s not like the cord
    That connects us ’til birth
    This cord can’t been seen
    By any on Earth.

    This cord does it’s work
    Right from the start.
    It binds us together
    Attached to my heart.

    I know that it’s there
    Though no one can see
    The invisible cord
    From my child to me.

    The strength of this cord
    Is hard to describe.
    It can’t be destroyed
    It can’t be denied.

    It’s stronger than any cord
    Man could create
    It withstands the test
    Can hold any weight.

    And though you are gone,
    Though you’re not here with me,
    The cord is still there
    But no one can see.

    It pulls at my heart
    I am bruised…I am sore,
    But this cord is my lifeline
    As never before.

    I am thankful that God
    Connects us this way
    A mother and child
    Death can’t take it away

    Reply
  23. D. Murray Armitage

     /  November 1, 2011

    I went to the link to vote, but I see that the Garage has already been declared the 2011 winner with over 48% of the vote. Well, that’s SOMETHING that went well. Not quite EVERYTHING is for shit in this world. Small mercies.
    The seemingly unstoppable juggernaut that is political correctness keeps rolling over all of our holidays trying to reduce the meaning to universal blandness. Is it only a coincidence that this year seemed to have a marked increase in younger (pre-teen) kids coming to the door trick or treating? Everytime I saw a child dressed as a star wars character, it made me smile and every young child that came left with warm wish to “have fun and stay safe”.
    I think it is sad that in all medical systems the same lack of patient advocacy exists – that the comforts that should be the easiest to provide are left for parents and family to fight for – sad that a fight even is necessary. In this way the medical system is the one that fails. Not after extreme effort, but without even lifting a finger to try. That is what seems so fucked up to me.
    All I can say is thank you for bringing us along on such a personal journey. We are humbled to be invited and we will do our best to respect your choice to share this most intimate and difficult part of your life. In return I will continue to follow and to honour Ronan’s memory by offering love and support to a family I have never met in person but that has touched my life and continues to do so every day. It seems so inadequate.
    Murray

    Reply

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