Ronan. Today didn’t start out extra hard, but that is how it has ended up. So much has been going on. Too much, I suppose. I made it through my birthday as best I could. It it any surprise that I didn’t feel like celebrating? I just wanted the day and night to be over as quickly and painlessly as possible. I didn’t even let your daddy buy me a birthday gift and he is still talking about it, today. He’s begged me over and over to please let him buy me some pretty earrings. He knows if he goes out does it himself, I’ll just return them. Pretty earrings won’t bring you back and that is still all I want. NEWSFLASH PEOPLE, I STILL WANT MY DEAD SON BACK AND TIME HAS NOT MADE THE YEARNING FOR HIM GO AWAY. I still beg for him every single day. So sorry to disappoint some of you who seem to think because of this thing called time, that my wanting my son back will just disappear. That because Poppy is here, she magically makes all my pain and sadness something of the past. She doesn’t. Yes, she brings back such wholesome goodness into our lives, but my pain is still here and just as present as before. I sat with your Sparkly for a while on my birthday because it’s a tradition of mine now, 4 years in the making. I sat across from him as he said, “What did I say, to make you cry on your birthday?” as he watched me wipe my eyes from behind my glasses. I told him that it wasn’t anything that he had said, that I just missed you so much and my birthday seemed to make me miss you that much more. He said he knew and how sorry he was and did his usual, I wish he were here, too. I came home and threw myself into bed for a few hours in the middle of the day and woke up to a pillow soaked with tears that I don’t remember crying, but the black mascara was evidence enough that they had been there. I survived my birthday but birthdays to me will never be the same again as they just make me very, very sad.
After my very unbirthday, I’m not celebrating a thing, I had to get ready for that bitch of a marathon that I said I was running. I didn’t really train at all except if you count going for some runs here and there, training. In my mind, I train for a mother fucking marathon everyday by just doing life. I talked our Bri Bri into doing it with me as well. She didn’t train at all either but I told her at 19 years old, you can do anything in the world, including running 26.2. We got up that morning in preparation for the day. I made us a little food, and we whispered in the dark about how excited we were to run this thing. I took out a Sharpie and did my usual writing of your name everywhere I could. I told Bri I was going to do her arms and she could do mine for a little extra running motivation. I wrote, “Ronan” down one arm and of course “F U CANCER” down the other. I handed her the Sharpie and told her to do my arms next. I looked down at my arms after she was done.
RONAN was written perfectly on my right arm and I looked down at my left arm to see the word, “FUCKER” written in huge, black letters on my left arm.
“BRI! You wrote “Fucker” on my arm!” My whispers were no longer whispers.
“I know!” she said. “I thought that’s what you wrote on my arm!”
“No! I wrote F U CANCER!”
We both were doubled over, laughing hysterically for a good five minutes before we could compose ourselves. There was nothing I could do about it as the sharpie was not coming off and the car that was picking us up to drop us off, had arrived. I decided just to roll with the word FUCKER down my arm and to see what added fun it might bring to the day. Besides, cancer is the biggest fucker anyway.
We got downtown to meet up with my dear childhood friend, Laura who came into to town to run the marathon as she actually trained. I had a sweatshirt on but told her the fucker story anyway to stop her from crying. It is an emotional thing to do a marathon for the first time, and on top of that add the reason that you are doing it is for your childhood besties, dead son… well, game over. Laura was officially a wreck but the fucker story definitely made her laugh and I think she had an even better time, calling me fucker throughout the marathon. So did the spectators on the street. The entire marathon I heard, “GO FUCKER, GO!!!” or “F U CANCER” or “GO RONAN!” as that is what we had on on the back of our shirts. I got asked who you were and I always said, “My son.” I didn’t say, “My son who died of cancer,” because to me that is not who you are and I won’t let that define you. I was doing pretty well in the marathon until about mile 17 and that was pretty much it. I hit that invisible wall that you hear people in the marathon world, talk about. I started walking, grabbed a gatorade that a lady was handing out on the side of the wall and chugged that thing like it was the last drink I was ever going to have. I waited for my friend, Katie to catch up to me where we walked/jogged/begged for the finish line. Bri met back up with me at mile 21 and somehow, we crossed the marathon line together, holding hands. I’ve never been more proud of my sissy in my life. She is such a little badass in training and I am so honored to be showing her the ropes.
I wanted to also take a second on here to thank all of you who supported me in the marathon by donating, volunteering, cheering or running yourselves. It wasn’t just Ronan I thought about while doing this, but you all as well. You kept me going when all I wanted to do was take the short cut, call it a day, and run back to my house. I love you all so much for never giving up on me and for pushing me to do really hard things, just so I can remind myself that I am capable of overcoming all of the odds even on the days were I still do just want to crumble up and die. You remind me to get back up and fight harder than I ever have before. So thank you, from the bottom of my heart for keeping me going as I try my hardest to change this for these other kids who deserve so much better than what they are getting tossed their way.
Oh, back to today and how it was a really, really, really fucking hard day. So hard, that I am too tired to write about it now, Ro baby. It was just one of those days where I really felt like I had the wind knocked out of me because I just miss you so very much. I have to get back to this book writing now. I’ll try to check in with you in a few days.
I miss you. I love you. I hope you are safe. Sweet dreams, baby boy.
Obsessed with this song. It may make me bawl like a baby, but it is so beautiful. Plus, Poppy loves it.
Ronan. We are back home and I am almost done with the whole holiday/celebrations of all things that still feel weird without you. My birthday is Saturday and I promise you I am trying to have a super good attitude about it, but I don’t really feel much like celebrating. This does not fly with your daddy as all he wants to do is make sure my day is overly the top special. What is the nicest way to tell him that over the top special to me would be hiding in bed all day, under the covers? I can’t do that though. It would break your brothers hearts so I will suck it up and do what is best for them. I will smile when I blow out my candles and make the same wish I do, every year. The one where I just hope so much that you are alright, safe, and hope that someday, I will see you again. I will smile for the picture that I know will be taken and I will forever wonder how in the world I can look so happy, in a picture when I feel like I am still so broken, sad and shattered. It truly is amazing the things we as adults can do to survive such horrific pain.
Washington was all things perfect. Well, almost;) I basically go there and hibernate for the winter. I feel like I did a lot of sleeping, which I never do well here. Every night was the same as I would crawl into bed with Poppy and pass out until she woke me up. Quinn and Liam have their own bedroom there, but they prefer to sleep in my room with me every night in another bed that is in the room. It’s like a big slumber party and is one of the things in life I love so much. Every morning when Poppy would wake up and I didn’t want to, Liam would grab her and say, “Mom, do you want me to take her downstairs and play with her so you can sleep a little longer?” Best brother ever and I happily thanked him and told him what a great big brother he was as I snuggled up to Quinn to sleep for another hour or so. I don’t know if it’s the fresh air, cold weather, or just the comfort of being at home that knocks me out, but it always seems to do so. I also spent a lot of time running which felt so nice. I finally feel like I have my running mojo back and it always seems to come back when I am there. I have a marathon to run in a couple of weeks so I made myself be pretty disciplined with my fake marathon training. I was pretty consistent with running my standard 3.5 miles just about every night. I somehow talked Brianna into running this thing with me. Must be the older sister influence;) She ran with me at home and we even did 7 miles one night which was surprisingly pretty easy. Her little 19-year-old body will be just fine.
Back in Arizona is hard for me, I’m not going to lie. The first night we got home I felt like I was sucker punched as I walked through the door to our house without you bouncing behind me. I handed Poppy to your daddy as he hadn’t seen her in a few days, told him I was exhausted and asked him to please take care of her so I could go to sleep. I knew the sleep wouldn’t come as all the voices in my head were screaming so loudly. I haven’t touched anything to sleep in over a year, but that night I needed to just pass out into oblivion for a solid 6 hours so I did. Oh, how I sometimes miss the days of complete darkness with my old friend, Ambien when the world just quietly slip away. I had to give up my love for that shit a long time ago due to loving it a little too much, but I think once a year is an o.k. compromise. Sometimes I just need a night of blackness. I had warned your daddy, so he was on Poppy duty and was happy to do so as he had missed her so much.
Speaking of Poppy, Ronan. Uhhhh…. remember when I asked you to make her “extra spicy?” It is too late to give just a bit of that spice back??? What in the world happened to my sweet, cuddly baby girl who just cooed and started sweetly into my eyes all day long?! Now my days are filled with this very wild, strong-willed girl who reminds me of a little boy I once knew so very much. She has turned into such a little spit fire who is on the go all the time and is constantly babbling, screaming (in a good way) and is into everything. To say she keeps me on my toes is an understatement as I am chasing her around all day and she is only crawling. Imagine what she is going to be like once she starts to walk! You know I am loving every second of it and so are your daddy and brothers. She is full on obsessed with your daddy, too. In a way that I really don’t remember any of you boys being. If we are in a room together with her, she wants your daddy over me. I secretly love it as it is amazing to see the bond between a father and a daughter. It’s all so new to us all but so beyond sweet. Your daddy is in total heaven about it.
Alright little man, this is all the update I can do for tonight. Back to writing this book I go. I miss you. I love you. I hope you are safe.