A death day and an almost birthday


Ronan. We made it through your death day the best we could. I didn’t sleep much the night before and I even had my alarm set to go off during the time that you passed away, just so I could be awake. I didn’t need the alarm because your Poppy sister woke me up almost exactly at the time you left this earth; because she wanted to eat. Of course she did, right Ro? Poppy knows what’s up. I did a lot of my crying the day before you passed away, a lot of it the night before, and still a lot of it on the awful day itself. I picked up the phone on your death day for the one person that promised to call and the one person that I would pick up for. Your Sparkly. I started crying as soon as I saw his name pop up on my screen. I let him do what he does best which is say a few things to help me get through the day. I didn’t say much, just quietly cried instead and told him I loved him. Not many words were needed by either of us.

We spent a quiet day in Sedona together by the river and in the woods. We had a little lunch and an early dinner. At one point, your Daddy and Liam ran into the store while Quinn, Poppy and I waited in the car. Quinn was changing the music in my car and a mixed C.D. that I had made, came on. The first song being, “Ronan.” He seemed so excited about it. “Oh! I haven’t heard this song in forever!” I just smiled at him and told myself to let it play while I sat in the back seat next to Poppy. It only took about 5 seconds of listening to that sweet voice and those oh so powerful lyrics before I lost it completely. Full on could not breathe, sobbing, as I wiped tear after tear away. I am still amazed at how Taylor did the most beautiful job at capturing my grief in such a way that it leaves me breathless every time I listen to your song. I love it so much, but it is so hard for me to get through. Quinn just watched as I cried, bent his head down, and held my hand. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to get through that song without crying. I could see every single word play out in my head like a real life movie except it’s not a movie, it’s my life and it never gets any easier.

Once we were back to our hotel and the sun was setting, we all headed down to the creek with our 6 purple balloons and a Sharpie pen. We all took turns writing on our balloons. I’m sure it was quite the sight the 5 of us, all huddled together, writing our thoughts to you. At first Quinn only wrote a couple of things. It went a little something like this:

“I miss you, Ronan.ย I love you to the moon and back.”

But then he said, “Wait! I need to write more!” It ended up being a novel for as much of a novel that would fit on one purple balloon. He said some other things that I tried to read out loud, but I started choking on my tears as I read his words.

“I wish you were here. I was really looking forward to watching you grow up and play baseball and basketball. I miss you.”

Liam’s words went a little something like this:

“Ro Ro. I miss you. I am so proud of you. You are so strong. I love you.”

Your daddy wrote his words, I wrote mine, and Poppy wrote hers;). We went down to where there was a clearing in the sky from the trees and let our balloons go. Only Liam’s made it out of the trees. The rest of ours got caught up in the branches above. Liam was jumping up and down in excitement as if it were a competition. It made us all laugh through our tears. I’m sure you giggled, too.

We had to come back from Sedona on Friday because your brothers had a basketball tournament to play in on Saturday. It was the playoffs for the YMCA team that your Daddy has been coaching them on. If they ended up winning, they would play again that night for a chance to go to the finals and play next week at the Phoenix Suns arena. They won the first game. After it was over, we ended up taking your brothers and 3 of their friends/teammates out for pizza. It’s these happy moments that I see through your brothers eyes that keep me going. We all sat there together at a table full of boys and we gave them a pep talk about their upcoming game. There were a lot of laughs and the talking was non stop. I am blown away at your brothers and so thankful for what respectful boys they are. Not only them, Ronan but the little group of friends they have made as well. The table was full of please’s, thank you’s, Yes, Mr. Thompson, No, Mrs. Thompson, all coming from a group of 9 year olds. At one point your daddy looked at me and said, “How much would Ronan have loved all the boys’ friends?” So much, Ronan. They are the nicest boys, the hardest little workers, and just so respectful. I know you would have been in the middle of them, causing your little mischief and they would have eaten it up with a spoon.

Your brothers won both games today, Ronan. I looked at them before their last game and said, “Do this for Ro,” as I gave them both knuckles. They both smiled at me and said that they would. I sat back tonight and watched as your brothers played their hearts out and I know it was all for you. Liam had 19 of our 22 points. They were both on fire and so determined to play in the finals. I love watching them play this game so much. I love watching your Daddy coach them. He is amazing at he and is the reason they have become such good little players. He works so hard with them to make them the best players that they can be. It makes me so proud of all 3 of them. I remember how when you were so little and so freakishly coordinated at such a young age how your daddy would talk about how he couldn’t wait to coach your teams. You would have been such an amazing athlete. Our mini Pat Tillman as we used to say. I’m sorry buddy. So very sorry.

It’s late. As soon as your brothers game ended we headed home to get our things so we could head to Tucson. We didn’t want to spend your birthday tomorrow sitting around our house being sad. So, we are taking your brothers to a resort that has one of the biggest water slides in all of Arizona. We will let them run around and be crazy for you tomorrow. Tomorrow we will all do our best to celebrate you by doing something you would have loved. Your brothers are very excited about doing this for you. I will do my best to put on my bravest smile to get through the day. I have a feeling your little sister will help me out. She seems to have a knack for this already. She is already helping me so much just by being here and making me feel like I have a tiny piece of you back. Thank you so much for her, Ro.

Happy almost 6th birthday my spicy little monkey. I love you so much. I miss you. I hope you are safe. Sweet dreams.


P.S. Happy Mother’s Day to all of you mum’s out there. I hope you have a beautiful day tomorrow and I know you all know how lucky you are. Please don’t ever forget that.

To all of my mom’s out there who are in my shoes…I know tomorrow will be rough and for that, I am so sorry. I wish you a day full of gentleness to just get through the day. Just getting through the day is something to be proud of. Here is a little lesson I have learned after going through something like this. Days like tomorrow will never get any easier. Ever. So on a day like Mother’s Day when it is supposed to be all about us, take this one day and stop trying to please other people. Take this one day and acknowledge your grief, don’t apologize for it, and do what it is that would make you the most happy on this day. For me, tomorrow isn’t about me and that makes me happy. I would much rather just spend the day celebrating my Ronan through the eyes of Liam, Quinn, and Poppy with my amazing husband. And you know what?? If tomorrow comes and I decide that I can’t get out of bed and do a thing, I know I am surrounded by the people who love me most in the world and they will be o.k. with that. I have learned that surrounding yourself with people who have no expectations of you, is the best way to get through these holidays that are so bloody hard now.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

41 responses to “A death day and an almost birthday”

  1. Thinking of your family- happy bday Ronan & Happy Mother’s Day Maya! We are taking our kids to ” Strike Out Cancer Day” @ our SF Giants game. Jack wants to parade around as an 11 yr old former cancer patient and hopefully the ugly beast stays away. Another child we had been following in our neck of the woods here in the Bay Area lost his precious life today from cancer- I cried so hard when I began reading his mothers caring bridge update. His name is David Jacobsohn and its davidjacobsohn when entering into caringbridge.. So wrong & sad- he even had his leg amputated in hopes of saving his life.. I can’t handle another precious life gone to cancer.

  2. Happy Birthday Ronan! We will be honoring him today by wearing purple and giving out cards all about him, and of course, donating. I hope you all have a good day ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Poppy is adorable! I know you may not have Ronan, but you have Poppy… I’m pretty sure when you look into those eyes, Ro is staring back, Poppy is his eyes to the world!

    Happy Birthday Rock star Ronan! Give your Mama some extra love tomorrow! Xoxox โ™ฅ

  4. Happy Birthday to Ronan. Happy Mothers Day to you….you are amazing and have the most amazing 4 children. Love to you on this day.

  5. Proud to know you, proud to call you a friend and so so proud of all you have achieved through your grief. And if I’m proud, someone who has never met you, imagine how your little man feels about his mama! Do what you need to do to get you through May xo Happy birthday RoBaby.

  6. Happy Birthday Ronan! ๐Ÿ™‚ xxxxxx

  7. Oh Maya! This may just be the most beautiful blog post yet, and coming from your sea of beautiful words that is really saying something! How wonderful your 3 sons are! What wise little men! And oh that Poppy daughter! She’s really growing & somehow getting more beautiful! Four treasures! Five when you factor in your wonderful husband – what an amazing dad! What a truly amazing mama you are! What an astonishingly amazing, powerful, and beautiful family of 6 you all are! ๐Ÿ™‚ Such love, beautiful eternal love!

    Happy 6th birthday, Ronan!!
    Happy Mother’s Day, Mama Maya!!

    Love to you all -xo

  8. Happy Birthday Ronan โค

  9. Happy 6th birthday to the spiciest little monkey, Ronan Thompson, and Happy Mother’s day to his mama. Your family have been in my thoughts and prayers for the last few days. Such an intense week of memories for you – Ronan’s death, cremation, memorial service, and birthday wrapped into a few days.

  10. Happy birthday Ronan and Happy Mother’s Day, Maya. Today my daughter Rosie and I are running a Mother’s Day 5k. We have our Ronan shirts and purple ready to wear to honor and celebrate him!!

  11. Hugs to you all – you have such a beautiful family. I am inspired by all that you do. Just wanted you to know that I’m one of many that follow – have grown to love not only Ronan but all of you. Hoping I can raise my son to be as good as your boys. That I can be half the mom that you are. Wishing you peace.

  12. Dear Maya,
    I’ve never left a comment before, but I want you to know that you and Ronan are always in my heart. Thinking of you during these horribly difficult month and trying to live life with the purple glitter/lifechanging passion that Ronan did,

  13. Your children are beautiful Maya, my thoughts are with you and your loved ones today!

  14. Happy birthday Ronan! I love you so much!!!! Mrs Maya thank you so much for your wonderful words and thoughts you are amazing just like your little son!!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ Aw and Maya happy mather’s day!!!! You are the best!!!! I love you and your family to the moon and back!!!!

  15. Thank you Maya. Thinking of you and Ronan. Wearing purple and will try to spread glitter today. Sending hope, hugs and an extra giant FU CANCER!!

  16. Happy Mother’s Day Maya! Your Poppy looks like you ๐Ÿ™‚ she’s beautiful! Hope the boys enjoy the water slide and you all have a lovely day! God bless…

  17. Happy birthday to your beautiful boy Ronan! Hope you have a great Mother’s day ,my thoughts are with you . Your Poppy is perfect ! With all my love

  18. Oh God, I lost it at the novel on the balloon. I am so sorry, Maya.

    I’m starting nursing school on Tuesday and reading this blog and thinking about you and Ronan got me through a lot of long nights while writing my application’s statement of purpose. You are changing a lot of lives. I’m sorry it had to be you.

  19. Happy birthday mini Brad Pitt!!! Thank you for sharing your spicy monkey with all of us!!! Rolove always!!! XO

    Enjoy your day with your boys, PopStar and your Romazing hubby RoMama xoxo

  20. Loved the slide show of pics. My hearts with you today Maya. In the pics of Poppy, she looks so much like you and in a few of them she looks just like Ro. Hugs today dear.

  21. Happy (crappy I’m sure) Mother’s Day to you. You are the best mother and I am so very proud of you and inspired by you daily.

  22. You have an amazing family. Glad that things seem going in a good direction. Love the tails of the balloons, boys games, and can’t wait to hear of the amazing water slides. Happy Mother’s Day.

  23. Happy Mothers Day Maya. Your beautiful family is a lot to be thankful for. I hope you have a perfect day filled with love and laughs. Baby Poppy is so beautiful. I had to smile at the picture of her with the pacifier in her mouth, it’s bigger than her!! Have a great day.

  24. Natalya Robinson Avatar
    Natalya Robinson

    I am so sorry for your loss of your sweet child! I can’t even imagine how hard this day must be for you! You inspire me so much! I have been reading your blog for awhile now, and I just want to let you know that I believe Poppy was woken by Ronan, at the time of his death, because he knew you would need to hold her to have strength at the time! She sounds like an angel baby! WITH LOVE, your reader Tally(:

  25. She has his mouth and cheeks, so perfectly,loves

  26. Happy Mother’s Day to the best rockstar mom in the planet!!

  27. Poppy really does look like Ronan, it’s unreal!! I’m so glad she’s bringing y’all some peace. Xoxo

  28. Thinking about you today, Maya. Poppy has such precious lips.

  29. On Mother’s Day and Ronan’s birthday, no words seem right, but know that I wish you peace.

  30. Happy Mama’s Day Maya, you truly are the best mom in the world. Thinking of you and your family, and sending much love to you all and Ronan!! Your Poppy girl is GORGEOUS. Love and hugs โค โค

  31. I’m in tears from your post Maya. You write the absolute truth & I’m so sorry that your Ronan is not here to celebrate this day with you. I hope you found some peace today & enjoyed your day in Tucson. Some of my family lives there & were also celebrating at a resort there this weekend, hopefully they did not disturb you all! ๐Ÿ™‚
    I cry every time I hear Taylor’s song.

  32. Happy Birthday Ronan! Happy Mother’s Day Maya! My wish for you is peace; and that the love of your family and friends will get you through this very hard day. Lots of love for all 6 of you!

    PS: Poppy is so beautiful! She looks so much like Ronan!

  33. Maya, I cannot believe how much Poppy looks like Ronan! I too believe that he sent her to you and your family to bring you some much needed peace. You are a great mom and I totally agree that you should spend Mother’s Day doing exactly what you need to do for you. Peace and love to you and yours!

  34. I love you so much maya and ro! happy birthday robaby and happy mothers day maya! you deserve only the best! thought of you both so much today and sending all my love and well wishes! infinite amount of x’s and o’s to you and your family mama maya, and give poppy an extra big squeeze, she is so precious โค

  35. Happy Birthday Ronan and Happy Mothers Day Maya! You have four beautiful and amazing children. I think about your family and spread the RoLove and awareness as often as I can!

  36. Colleen Fisher Avatar
    Colleen Fisher

    What a beautiful way to celebrate Ro’s birthday and Mother’s Day. Big hugs go out to you on these May days … xoxo

  37. Always thinking of you Ronan always deep in my heart and prayers, so happy you have a new baby sister and your brothers are doing a little better, you are so missed, prayers for you all every day, Happy Mothers Day to your mommy Maya

  38. I thought people who were commenting on Poppy looking like Ronan before were crazy, but I totally see it now, they look so much alike!! She is just precious.
    I just know that Ronan picked Poppy out especially for you guys. He just knew she was the perfect Poppy girl to help make the pain of losing him a little less sometimes. I also bet a piece of Ronan is in Poppy, and I bet he rocked her and played with her a ton before sending her down to you and your family. I know your heart broke the day Ronan died, and that piece of your heart you will never get back. You are so inspiring, so strong and determined to be able to keep going and handling everything you are going through the way you are. You are someone to look up to, I truly believe you will change the world of Childhood Cancer, and I thank you for that, and I promise that I will do whatever I can to help support you in doing so in honor of Ronan. You are so strong, and so brave. I hope Poppy girl makes your heart bigger than it was before, to help fill a tiny bit of the huge piece that is missing. No mother should know the pain of losing a child, but unfortunately that is how sick this world works sometimes, and my family is all too familiar with the feeling. I wish you could rub off some of your positive energy on me =)
    Thank you so much for continuing to express your thoughts and feelings with the world, I know it can’t be easy sometimes, especially when you get assholes on here commenting on how they think you should be handling your grief, but have not experienced a loss that great themselves.
    When I found your blog a couple months ago, I started from the beginning and printed out as much as I could read on my lunch break, I read it in my car, I cried and laughed with you. I would look forward to my break for that reason, and you my friend made my day more bright by expressing your feelings, and showing other people going through similar situations that there is hope, and there are positive ways to deal with such a huge loss. Now that I am all caught up on the blog I look forward to receiving an e-mail notification when there is a new post.
    You are awesome. Thank you.

  39. I couldn’t stop thinking about you over the weekend. I have always cherished my daughter, as any parent should. However since the day she was born, I have always felt like my time with her is limited. It’s a feeling I cannot shake. Whether I lose her, or I die young and leave her motherless. I try to make even the most ordinary things memorable and special. Knowing you are living my nightmare shatters my heart for you.
    I have no words other than letting you know that even “strangers” have been moved by Ronan and your family. We will never forget. โค

  40. Ronan and Maya the most beautiful love story between a mother and child…nothing not even time can take away. Thank you so much for letting me live and breathe my blessings..the three most amazing children and my husband…thank you Ro thank you Maya for being such an inspiration to this mama. Hugs!!!!!!

  41. I have been thinking about you all over these past few days and hoping that you all found the strength to get through it. Not only did you have to deal with the anniversary of little Ronan’s death, but also the celebration of his birth and Mother’s day too. I cannot imagine how difficult it was…. but I do know that you have amazing strength and stamina to see you through. Your beautiful children are amazing and little Poppy has features that are uncanny to Ronan. Stay strong and true, remain loving, and may you all have health, peace and happiness in your life. Love to you all…

Leave a Reply to EmmaFromUK Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: