Grief, Pregnancy, and what else?? I don’t know, I forgot.

Ronan. Today seemed like a really, really long day. The days without you never fly by anymore. They still seem to be never-ending. Today, seemed extra long for some reason. Looking back I cannot even remember what I did, but as I sit here and think about it, I know. I missed you with every single step I took just like I always do. I had to go to Target, to stock up on some things. I was in the middle of grabbing some stuff and I had one of those moments where I thought to myself, “Today feels like a really hard day for some reason. You should go back home and go to bed for the whole day.” I finished up my Target trip and told myself to power through the day and just get some things done. It was one of those days where I had to have multiple pep talks with myself. I got home and was determined to get some things done that I have been avoiding. One of them being getting rid of the hand me down clothes that I have been saving forever for you, from your brothers. I went through about 7 bins that we have in our garage. I wanted to throw up. What do you mean Ronan won’t get to wear those Nike shoes now or those little John Deere cowboy boots I saved for him? What do you mean I don’t get to pass down your brothers things for you? That wasn’t part of our “plan.” I had a very specific plan in store for our family and never did it consist of you getting cancer and dying. How the fuck did this happen? I don’t care how real this is, I will never get used to it.

I packed up your brothers clothes. I think I called your daddy on my way to the consignment store. I told him what I was doing. Or at least I tried to tell him, but I could barely get the words out without choking my tears back. He told me to wait that he would do it. I was on a mission and just wanted to get it done. I got to my destination. This was me, walking in. “Don’t cry. Don’t cry. Don’t cry.” I dropped off your brothers clothes and got out of there, as fast as I could. I don’t remember what happened the rest of the day. Everything is a blur as this little event happened earlier in the week. I’m still dealing with the if I don’t write things down, soon after they happen, I usually won’t remember them. I sometimes think my cloudy grief brain is never going to get better. I’ve been called flaky now by others. I don’t mean to be. But if I don’t have it written down, or a reminder from someone…. I tend to forget a lot of things. I wasn’t this way before all of this. This is a part of the new me. I don’t like it, but I also don’t have much control over it.

I went to see Marie Tillman speak the other night. She is the widow of Pat Tillman. One of our hero’s in our house. Remember Ro, how we used to call you our mini Pat Tillman? Your daddy and I used to always talk about how we thought you were going to grow up to be just like him. Unbelievably beautiful. Freakishly coordinated. Fearless. With the best heart. I used to tell you bedtime stories about him. We used to do the Pat’s Run every single year and I would happily push you in your jogging stroller while I ran the race. I was excited to go out for the night with Stacy to listen to Marie talk about her life and the book she has written. After she was done speaking, I had the chance to talk with her a little bit. We talked about you, Pat, and this bitch of a thing called grief. She said something to me like, “Everyone expects you to get better over time, and I don’t think that’s true. I told her that I couldn’t agree more. That unfortunately, grief does not seem to have an expiration date. It is such a misconception that time heals all wounds. If anything, I think it makes the pain worse. Deeper in a way. I think I miss you more today, then I ever have. I think I will go on missing you more and more everyday as time passes on by.

I think I have kind of been hiding out a lot. Grief and pregnancy do not go hand in hand together and they are not my friend. I’m still trying to wrap my head around this Poppy sister of yours. She’s starting to kick a lot which is helping to make me realize that she really is growing in my stomach, otherwise I think I might forget. I was with Fernanda today, telling her about how I cannot even go into a clothing store without wanting to scream and run the other way. In my mind, I was thinking this was a more of a what’s wrong with me thing? What is so wrong with me that I cannot even pick out some sweet little clothes for your baby sister? Fernanda put it to me in a way that only she could do. It’s not a what’s wrong with me thing. It’s a because “you know that material items such as clothes in a fancy store, are not what matters. They won’t make you happy. It’s just stuff and you know the worthlessness of that stuff.” I think she hit the nail on the head. All the stuff at the end the day, doesn’t matter at all. So maybe, this is what my road block is all about. Poppy has to be clothed, but Fernanda told me not to worry about that as it will be taken care of. If I had my way, she’d just be a nudey baby forever I guess. I was told also not to worry about her nursery. That she will pick out all the furniture, how it looks, etc…. Of course I trust her with all of this. I am just so thankful that I don’t have to think about any of it as it all seems so overwhelming. I am so thankful for my amazing magical friend who can fix any situation and instantly make me feel better about it. Well, almost any situation. I know she wishes so badly that she could have fixed your situation but I’ll never forget how hard she tried. She tried just as hard as your daddy and I did. I’ll never forget that.

This is all for tonight little man. I’m tired. But restless. You are still waking me up every single night at 3:25 a.m. It’s been this way, since you left. I know it’s you, trying to get to me. I know it’s as hard for you, to be away from me. I’m so sorry about all of this. I wish so badly I could bring you back. I miss you. I love you. I hope you are safe. Sweet dreams, little man.


22 responses to “Grief, Pregnancy, and what else?? I don’t know, I forgot.”

  1. I cannot even begin to imagine how hideously traumatic giving those clothes away would have been. This all just seems like the sickest joke…not only do you lose Ronan after he fought so fearlessly, but now you have to deal with all this shit that is left behind. What kind of fuckery is this?!

    I’m also guessing that Fernanda, along with everyone else that loves you across the world, will be making sure that everything is taken care of for Poppy’s arrival. She won’t want for anything, Maya…especially not love. Let those who love you and her take care of the material things; for some of us that is all we can offer you. You take care of YOU…and that will be taking care of Poppy.

  2. Thinking of you and Ronan every day. Thank you for sharing. I’m sad about the hand-me-downs.

  3. You inspire me. and you’re making me stronger with every word. i heard Ronan and came upon your blog about a month ago. i’ve been keeping up with it as much as i can. i lost my little boy as well. and there are days like today that i think i cant make it through. Days i think that i’m alone. that nobody knows how i feel, and then i read your blog. You remind me differently. i know i don’t know you and we have never met. But i want you to know you give me hope. So i can let my son live through me, just like you’re doing. i honestly believe there was a reason i heard Taylors song that day. And as crazy as it sounds i think my son knew that i needed someone. Theres a reason i was led here so i could hear Ronans beautiful story and read how to live like a rockstar. because i know i needed to hear that. i needed to start living like my son and Ronan would have wanted. So i’m trying to make a change. instead of mourning my sons death, im trying to celebrate his life. thats all because of YOU and your Ronan. Even though i cant repay you, i want to thank you for everything you do. You’re one of the most strongest people on this planet. and i love you for that. i will never forget what you both have taught me.

  4. I’ve never commented, but have read faithfully since September. I’ve been mulling over in my head how I should word what I want to say because in a way, for sharing Ronan’s story, I owe you my life.

    I say this because before learning of Ronan, I was aimlessly going through life. I had no purpose. I don’t know what it is about Ronan’s story, but it hit me in such a way that my heart stopped and started to beat in a different way. My heart started to beat not for myself but for you, for Ronan, and for other kids and their families who have or who are battling cancer.

    I’ve opened an Etsy shop and make bracelets where all the proceeds go to Ronan’s foundation.

    I thought about changing my major to pediatric oncology nursing, but after much thought, I decided that I’m not strong enough academically in science and math to do it- but I am going to volunteer at the Vanderbilt pediatric cancer clinic here in Nashville.

    My husband and I have decided if we have a son, we’re honoring Ronan, by naming our son after him. Because Ronan has changed my life and deserves to be honored.

    I wanted to say thank you for sharing your and Ronan’s story- in fact, I can’t thank you enough for being brave enough to lay it all out there for the world to read. I would love to be more involved in the foundation in any way, whatever form that may take. I wish I could put into words how fulfilled I feel doing what I can to spread awareness and fighting for kids. It’s given me a happiness I haven’t had in such a long time- because I’m changing someone’s life and making my life more than myself.

    I’m sure you’ve been flooded with e-mails and comments, but I hope this still reaches you. Thank you so much for sharing your story and fighting, Maya.

    Jessikah Warfle

  5. Hi Maya. This is Jakob’s mom. I messaged you on FB but I am sure that is the last thing on your priority list. I just wanted you to know that my whole family and all of my friends know about Ronan and his story. My Jakob was diagnosed with neuroblastoma at 3 weeks old on Valentine’s Day in 2001. What you are doing is nothing short of amazing. Losing Ronan is wrong and horrible. If anything good can come of it is that because of him (and you) people will have to put a face to this terrible disease! It isn’t just a long weird word anymore, it is a beautiful almost 4 year old boy with the most stunning blue eyes anyone has ever seen! Your blog is so real and so raw and I hate that it is taking a mother having to share her most private and soul crushing moments to make people pay attention. But I also applaud you for not being quiet, not taking it on the chin. I will scream it from the roof tops with you… Fuck You Cancer!!! If it can bring you any comfort at all please know that there are so many of us who know about Ronan and he has made a difference in this world.


  6. Oh maya. Sittin here after reading thy with tears streaming down my face. My heart aches for you it really does. I have no words right now to help you exept that you are in my thoughts every day and ronan has helped me truley appreciate every single day I have with my family and embrace them and everything they do. Sending love all the way from Ireland. Xxxxxxxxxx

  7. Stupid fucking cancer. Seriously.


  8. You are an amazing, beautiful, astonishing person, and you made an amazing, beautiful, astonishing son and God was so, so wrong to take him from you.
    That boy of yours will be in my heart forever.

    1. Please stop saying things like God took him from her… That is a lie of Satans… Is God the almighty and creator wanted angels he would have created angels like he did in the beginning. The God of love would never be cruel as take a mother and fathers child! This is a result of Adam and Eves sin and when Gods time arived he will remove all sickness, pain, and death. Revelation 21:3,4.
      If I believed what you said I’d really hate God! That’s exactly what his enemy wants us to believe so we lose out on everlasting perfect life on earth with no wickedness, sin, death, pain, torture etc… Please think before you say such things!

  9. Mama Maya, you are NOT flaky. You are the leading beacon that will bring all the focus on what is important. You have exposed Childhood Cancer for the murdering bastard it is, and you have an enormous army just waiting to assist you to VICTORY. FUCK the fools. FUCK CANCER. Lead on, Sweetie. You are AWESOMENESS personified.

  10. Heartbroken and thinking of you and Ronan— and raising a big middle finger to cancer… xxx

  11. Oh Maya, sweetie, Ronan is waking you up at 3:25 because that is the time of day the veil on the other side is the thinnest…it’s when our loved ones come the closest to us. Just keep doing what you are doing and Ronan eventually come through. xxoo

  12. Take care of yourself, and Poppy will be taken care of. You have family, friends, and strangers that will all make sure that Poppy will have everything she needs. I don’t blame you for not being able to do any of the seemingly simple baby things, like setting up the nursery or buying clothes. Sometimes the most ‘normal’ things are the hardest, because they were the things that you didn’t really think about doing before.

  13. You are my hero. Because of your honesty and your devotion and your love…and how fucking good you are at crafting sentences that literally can stop someone in their tracks and make them sob and change and want to be better. Not a lot of people can do that. I think Poppy is the most beautiful name for a little girl, it’s pretty and playful and smart and witty and that’s everything I’ll bet she will be with a mom like you. Thank you for giving the world your story, I wish it wasn’t that way and he was here.

  14. Maya, I believe when Poppy pops into this world she will bring you so comfort your heart yearns for… She will give you so much love and strength to carry on with this amazing cause you are fighting with body and soul for. I believe she will bring loving memories of Ronan along with her and Ronan will be right there playing with her as well. He will not miss out on the little sister he always wanted…

    My heart goes out to you… And when it comes to the hand me downs I know this is one of the hardest things to face… We still haven’t got brave enough to take that step as yet along with other things… But reading your blog has made me look at it a bit differently. I can now see some other child wearing his brothers clothes living the life we wished our love ones were living. The clothes and shoes that should be getting muddy and wet while jumping in puddles. Getting paint on them and dirty while playing in the play grounds… Just getting the use that they would be getting if our babies were still here with us… This will give me and my daughter some comfort when the time finally does come…

    Thank you for being you and helping others deal with their own grief along the way… I know this was not your intention when you started this blog but you have helped so many people. You have helped people who are grieving themselves as well as doing a great job in bringing awareness to this horrible disease..

    God Bless you and stay true to yourself.xx

  15. RoMama,

    You are real and raw. You are an inspiration. Take care of you & Poppy
    Thinking if you & Rockstar Ronan
    Always rolove

  16. Maya I hear a song I think of you and Ronans love story, I see purple and I think of Ronan. Everything reminds me of him and I never met him but I’m thankful I found your blog and heard your love story about Ronan, because I tell everyone about childhood cancer, and how unfair it is to these kids and their families, and I wont stop relaying this message! It is the right thing to do for children. Thank you for fighting for beautiful children, I’m proud of you and u absolutely know that Ronan is too! Love you chica!

  17. Despite reading your blog for over a year and half – I am still continually surprised and inspired by your honesty and willingness to be so vulnerable with the world. I’ve said it here before and I say it again, we (your blog readers) are here, here for the good days the bad days and really bad days. I’m so fucking sorry Ronan died, it is so horrible and so messed up. Sending you thoughts of love, calm, and self forgiveness.

  18. Always thinking of you, your family and your sweet Ronan – wishing things would get easier but I know that is not possible. I do wish you peace, and I send love always.

  19. I wish I could have known baby Ronan! He was indeed a beautiful child. I can not relate to your grief in any way, but I can see you are a strong willed woman and than in itself is inspiring. I cant imagine the void you feel. may you have better days in your future. Your family and little Ronan will always be in my thoughts and prayers. Xxxx

  20. It’s been 6 months since my cousin lost her battle with medullablastoma. It’ll be the first holiday season without her. I sit here listening to Taylor Swift and all I can think about is how f’d up this is. She was a month away from turning 19 when she passed. She had a lot longer life than Ronan but she was de

    1. Deprived of so much. I didn’t even know if I was going to send this but my iPhone decided on its own. I applaud you for waking up every morning and doing the best you can. I am a recent grad trying to get a job ad a child life specialist and I’m so afraid that that ill feel too connected to do that job but I know it’s what I’m supposed to do. Thanks for creating this blog so others have something else to feel connected to. Rolove <3.

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