The summer of the Dolphins

Ronan. I’m not sure what I have written in these past few posts. I think they have been a little dark, scary, and sad though. I’m sorry. I had a better day today. I promise. I tried my best. We took your brothers for lunch and were deciding on going to the Zoo or to play football. They chose football. You would have loved it. You were missed by everyone. It still feels so strange, it just being the four of us. Not right at all. But we made the best of it that we could. After Football, your daddy and Liam went to run some errands. Quinny and I hung out here. As soon as they returned, I had a craving for Pinkberry. Quinn and I hopped in the car to drive to downtown San Diego to pick some up. As I was texting Liz to see if she wanted any, she told me to come over to the bench that she and her mom were sitting on, in front of the El Camino Pool. I parked and walked over with Quinn. Liz started to tell her mom to tell me what they had figured out about all the dolphins we have seen. Karen said no, not in front of Quinn. I sat and just watched the ocean. About 5 minutes later, Quinn spotted the dolphins. Liz started crying. Karen and I held her as the tears rolled down her cheeks. I wasn’t aware of what they had figured out, but I knew it had something to do with the dolphins, Ronan, and me. It has been a strange dolphin summer. Every time I am out by the ocean, they just appear. Liz told Karen tonight, if they appeared when I came over to sit down at the bench,she was going to freak out. They appeared and that is when she started to cry. I knew why. We all know why, Ro. It is your sign to me that you are o.k. That you are happy, playful, and loved….. wherever you are. When I tried to get out to the dolphins on my paddle board the other day, as soon as I got out into the water, they all disappeared. It was weird. The second I was coming back into shore, they appeared right behind me, where I had been moments earlier. It’s like you are telling me, you can see me, but you can’t get too close. You will see me again, but it’s not time yet. You still want me to know you are here, you will always be here until we are ready to go off in our own little world together. I cried on that bench today too with Liz. She then went home and looked up some dolphin symbolism. So beautiful.

Dolphins seen in Christian art are symbolic of resurrection. Some artists utilize the protective, stabilizing, compassionate demeanor of the dolphin as a message of wellbeing to the pure of heart. Some artistic renditions speak of dolphins transporting the spirits of the faithful to Christ’s side upon leaving their physical bodies. Also in Greece, the dolphin is a compatriot of both the god Apollo (sun) and the goddess Aphrodite (moon).This is a key understanding because the dolphin meaning is connected with themes of duality. It has to do with the dolphin being both fish and mammal. It is both of the water, and an air breather. Ergo, dolphin symbolism talks to us about “being in two worlds at once.” Poseidon (Greek), Neptune (Roman)
Themes of kingship, rulership, authority, strength, dominion, freedom, intelligence, compassion and fatherly protection over the entire kingdom (sea).
Eros (Greek), Cupid (Roman)
These gods contribute dolphin meaning of: Love, friendliness, playfulness, sensuality, desire, exploration, curiosity, attraction and joy.
Dionysus (Greek), Bacchus (Roman)
These deities underscore the dolphins ability to uplift, and carries themes of joviality, freedom, wildness, abandon, creative self-expression. The term delphi is noteworthy as the Greek word for dolphin is delphis and its derivative, delphys means womb. This incorporates more lunar and feminine attributes to the dolphin scene. In Celtic animal symbolism, the dolphin as a highly honored creature as it was seen as the protector of sacred wells and sacred water. The dolphin, to the Celtic mind, is the watcher of the waters, and the guardians of all things water-associated. Pirate lore also hails the dolphin as a symbol of protection.

From my love, LIZ::::::: I know you’ve want to see Ronan in your dreams, but I swear… these fucking dolphins, Maya. My mom said when you guys were talking by the pool yesterday, they were there the entire time. I have no doubt in my mind they are the sign you’ve been looking for. I hope you can sleep better tonight knowing that Ro is always ALWAYS by your side. Love you so much.

I do believe this. It’s happened too many times for me not to. I can’t think of one time that I have not been out by the beach and not had them be there too. At the exact same time I am. I know they don’t just hang out there all day and night. It’s a sign indeed. A beautiful sign from my baby boy. Thanks, Ro. You know I needed that, especially after my hard couple of days.

I took Quinn to Pinkberry tonight. He is my little sidekick. Stuck like glue. He is sleeping between your daddy and I with you GiGi on his head. Just like the way you used to sleep with us after you got sick. I miss watching you sleep. I miss you squeaky voice so much. I’ve got to figure out how to get through this without you, Ro. I’ve got to “flip the switch,” as my friend says. I wish it were that simple, that easy. I need a better attitude?? I need to not miss you so much?? I need to find things to occupy my time?? Are those the answers? I don’t know. I hate the unknown. It’s days like today that I am happy that I got out of bed before 9 and I did my best to play with mommy role that feels so unnatural without you. But I did it. Sucked it up and did it.

I got a random text from my little 17-year-old airplane pal. I have not heard from him in forever. He said he was having a bad day, he is lonely, and he is tired of the drama with girls. This made me smile. Not to take away anything from what he is going though at 17, but what wouldn’t I give for those problems. He told me at 17 he just wants someone to share his life with. I told him the only people he needed to be sharing his life with at 17 are his friends and figuring out what truly makes him happy. I told him it could be a lonely journey, but it will be worth it. How if you take care of yourself first, everything will just fall into place. I told him how I understood, how at 17 I felt very restless and wasn’t really sure what I wanted out of my life so I took the time to leave my town and just focus on me. I never looked back. I told him how I have learned the very hard way how precious life really is, how I will forever be destroyed because I don’t get to watch you grow up. I told him that he, Bryson, has everything, right in front of him. My advice to him was not to let the petty things get him down, to take this time and live his life for him and nobody else, travel, get out of Utah, read books, run, play sports, study, fall in love 10 different times, make mistakes, learn from them, and then make them all over again. I think he liked what I had to say as he told me that I had just made his life sound 10 times more exciting. Glad I could help:) You are a good kid, B, so you will be just fine.

OK baby boy. Ambien nights are here. I love you to the moon and back. You are my heart, my soul, my everything, forever. Nothing can take that away. Sweet dreams, I hope you are safe.

xoxo

To live with ghosts requires solitude

Ronan. Is the world ending? I have never in my life had a year full of so many awful things happening around me. 2 deaths on Coronado a couple of weeks ago. I don’t know much about what went on, as I don’t watch the news or read the paper anymore. I only heard the whispers of others around me. I heard that the little boy passed away a few days ago. It made me cry. It made me sad. It made me angry for this fucked up life that his parents will now have to go on living, without their little boy. After an awful night of sleep last night, even with my Ambien, I woke up to very sad news. A girl that I had never met, but we had talked via email many times, lost her battle with cancer.  A young girl, around my age. She was married and she wrote an amazing blog about her life, her passion, her strength and her determination to beat it. Her name was Jen and I followed her blog. I don’t follow anyone’s blog, but I stumbled on hers a couple of months after you were diagnosed. I reached out to her, to tell her how inspiring she was, how much she inspired me to keep fighting for you and to never give up. She emailed me back and it went from there. I fell in love with her and her fighting spirit. I told her I was convinced that the two of you, would beat the odds. We tried to meet up in New York City the last time I was there with you, but it just didn’t work out. She was sick and you were sick. She so wanted to meet you and I so wanted you to meet her. I wanted to wrap my arms around her and give her the hug that she deserved. She recently went all the way to Switzerland with hopes that this new trial would make her better. It didn’t work. This is all so unfair. I hope now you get the chance to meet her. I hope you will look after one another. Her service is tomorrow. She loved life so much and wanted her leaving of this world to be celebrated. She wants a dance party for tomorrow. This is what was posted today:

As you are all aware, Jen’s funeral is tomorrow and we wanted to give you some insight into Jen’s last wishes regarding honoring her memory. Jen believed “life was for the living.” She wanted her funeral and any other memorials to be as much of a celebration of her life as possible. In fact, she even wrote of possibly wanting a “dance party!” In that vein, please feel free to smile and laugh as you recall special memories of Jen and please dress however you like. Jen would have loved there to be some color in the room and not have everyone dressed in all black! 
As much as Jen wanted her memorial to be upbeat, she was respectful, however, that everyone mourns in their own way and that there was no “right” way to do so. Please help us honor Jen and her legacy in whatever way you see fit. 
We have cherished reading the tributes written here and on Facebook. Please continue to contribute memories, thoughts and wishes. Those who love Jen have already taken great comfort in your kind words.
PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO READ SOME OF HER STORIES. HER LINK IS ON THE SIDE OF MY BLOG, UNDER MY OTHER HERO. OR GO TO WWW.YOUFEARLESS.COM
LET’S HELP HER CONTINUE HER FIGHT AND HER VISION. SHE NEEDS EVERYONE NOW MORE THAN EVER TO KEEP HER DREAM ALIVE. I LOVE YOU, JEN. TAKE GOOD CARE OF MY BABY.
Although I didn’t know Jen, she inspired me throughout your journey, Ro. She was all about living a life without fear. She felt, if you took fear out of the equation, you could accomplish anything. I am absolutely sold on what she believed. Fear is for the weak. Fear is for the ignorant. Fear can ruin your life. If there was ever a time that I was feeling defeated, frustrated, mad, or just plain tired, I would often time read Jen’s blog and email her to tell her thank you and how much I believed in the two of you. You two should have both survived this. You two should have both beaten the odds. My heart breaks for everyone who knew her, but how lucky they were. I hope you two have the biggest dance party tomorrow together. She would have fit right in with us and our love for dance parties, Ro. I know you two will take good care of each other. In honor of her tomorrow, I am going to make another music video just for Jen. Get ready for another youtube hit:)

I also found out that one of  our good friends’ brothers, Eric, passed away from cancer yesterday. I spent a summer in Newport with your daddy and Eric when your dad and I first started dating. He was such a gentle soul and I always felt as his eyes were smiling. My heart is beyond broken for his family. I called your daddy tonight and we talked about him going to the services on Saturday. I told him I really think that he should. We both won’t feel right if he doesn’t go. Mark has been a very good friend to us. Your daddy should be there for him. Eric leaves behind a wife and two little boys. I just want to know what the fuck is going on in the world. Two amazing people, just gone. It’s as the world is opening up and swallowing all of these beautiful souls up, one by one. It is beyond unfair. Hey world. I have an idea. Why don’t you take the freaking Casey Anthony‘s of the world instead and leave all of the amazingly good people alone. You are about to royally piss me off and I am on the verge of doing something crazy just to see if I can fucking cheat death and survive the odds. Fuck you world. You can piss off.

I went to Yoga this morning. Yay me! I have been saying I was going to go all summer, but I just haven’t gotten myself to do it. No Yoga fail this morning. Liz picked me up and we headed off to do a class. I was afraid to go this morning. I have been avoiding it. The last time I went to Yoga, was while you were in the hospital. I went and ended up crying pretty much the entire time. It seems to open up a lot of emotions for me. Today, I was o.k. I tried to focus all of my energy on you, Jen and Eric. I tried to stay positive. At the end of the session, our instructor asked us to close our eyes, and to be thankful for the life we had. I had to restrain myself from standing up and screaming at the top of my lungs that I was not thankful for life, because you are gone. I am mad today, sad today, lost today. I don’t know who I am without you. I don’t want to be anybody. I am trying to take these thoughts and make them motivate me. Motivate me to do something amazing for you. I will, because if I don’t, then who the fuck will? Nobody. I have to take these lessons that I have learned and turn them into something good. For the sake of you, and all of the other people in the world who are affected by cancer. Nobody is safe. This can happen to anyone. I still wish this were me and not you. I would still trade places with you in a heartbeat.

So, after I finished Yoga, Liz and I walked to Starbucks. We got a coffee and talked about everything from UFO’s (duh, they totally exist) to my sparkly nail polish that I am obsessed with. Oh, don’t worry….. it was just a nice peaceful stroll back to The Shores when we saw the smoke pouring out of one of the units. Not only was smoke pouring out, but flames as well. And not just any flames, but huge flames, out of the sliding glass doors and out to the balcony. One of the units had caught on fire. It was a big fire and everyone sat outside and watched, took pictures, and video taped it. The firefighters showed up but it seemed to take them forever. Liz and I just looked at each other and both asked what in the world is going on and that is when we decided that the world must be coming to an end. Bring it on. I’m totally fine with that.

Ronan. Somebody told me he thought you were too pure and good for this evil world. I sat with that for a while and I think I kind of agree. I don’t think such an ugly would like this would have known what to do with all of your wisdom, beauty, love, courage, strength, fearlessness, and the brains that you possessed. The world decided that you were too perfect so it had to take you back. I have schemed up so many theories about you and your life. It’s what I do at night while I sit her and think about you. Do I need a higher dose of this Ambien shit? I took it two hours ago and it’s almost 2 in the morning and nothing. Well, I hope it doesn’t have to do with the fact that I am drinking a COKE right now. My only vice in life really.

Not sleeping, mind is still racing. I don’t mind though. As long as your brothers are asleep, and my music is playing, cold Coke nearby, and you are here….. this is my heaven. Thanks for my perfect playlist on Pandora tonight. You have been playing the best songs. Everyone reminds me of you and some of them were our favorites. I hope you can still hear music. You loved it so much. I always play it twice as loud for you when I am running in hopes that you can hear it too.

Alright my little bug. Think I will cozy up with your brothers and try to get some sleep. I love you to the moon and back, Ro. Just you and me. Forever. Sweet dreams. I hope you are safe.

xoxo

 

Ro…. Inquiring minds want to know. Nailpolish color is by Debroah Lippman, the color is Happy Birthday. You would have freaked over it as it is so sparkly!!! I think of you everytime I wear it!!

Ronan. Do you know that I wait all day for this time at night with you?? It has become so special to me, that it is now a major part of what keeps me going through out the day. I wait for our time together, when everyone is asleep and it is just the two of us. I wait all day so I can finally sit here at night and write to you, take care of you, cry with you, and nurture you the only way that I get to now. I do this for myself, as much as I do it for you. It’s my time with you, alone, to sit with my thoughts and share them with you. It comes so naturally to me now that I am convinced that you can hear the words that I am saying to you. I so need you to hear them. I so need my time with you at the end of the night. The silence is just too loud.

I wrote to you last night, only to have it disappear. I’m not sure what I even said. I know I filled you in on what we have been doing to keep busy. But as I sit here and try to recall what that is, my mind draws a blank. I can’t even remember the day of the week, let alone what now goes on in a day. I can sit and tell you about today though. Even if it seems like everything that happened, was so long ago. The days are still dragging on and time is still standing still. The stupid sun is still rising, every morning and just makes me angry. I’ll tell you about today, before I forget. I took your brothers to Laguna for the day. We needed to get off the island and I wanted to see my friend, Denise, before we went back to Phoenix. We left this morning around 10 and spent the day with her. We met her at her brother’s house, which is unlike anything I have ever seen. It is filled with exotic things everywhere. You would have loved it. We spent a big part of the day, exploring her brother’s house and his love for snakes, frogs, lizards, fish, fossils, butterflies, trees, plants…. it’s like a mini zoo. Liam and Quinn had the best time and Denise did such an amazing job of explaining what everything was to them. It was a very educational day to say the least. We walked into town and had lunch overlooking the ocean. We got ice cream afterwords and sat on the beach, just enjoying the simpleness of the day. We walked back after a few hours and had a little adventure by the ocean shore as we navigated our way down a cliff, through the water, over rocks and back up some stairs; to reality. We said our goodbyes and I drove off feeling so happy for the beautiful day we had just had, but also so sad that I didn’t have you physically there with us. My heart was heavy. On the way home, we got stuck in traffic. Not a surprise, but it ended up taking us twice as long to get home. I would have usually been annoyed by this, but not today. Do you know what I did for the 2 hours that we were stuck in traffic? I talked. I talked to your brothers for so long that I probably turned blue in the face. I don’t know who this person was in the car today as you know I tend to keep my thoughts to myself. I tend to be on the quieter side as I like to think before I speak and it is as if I am always processing and analyzing the things I say. Today, on the car ride home, I did none of that. I let my worlds fly out of my mouth, and I engaged with your brothers in a way that I haven’t done in a very long time. It felt really good. I talked a lot about my childhood and told them a lot of stories. I told them how I had a lot of hard things happen in my life, but how I never felt sorry for myself. I told them the importance of appreciating everything that they have and how lucky they are. I told them they are lucky, Ronan. I still feel this way even though you are gone. How is that even possible?? I really can’t explain it, except for I am so much more grateful for the little things in life that they have now. Even with you being gone. You were the most precious gift to us.

I ran on the beach tonight. I took Liz with me as I am trying my best to turn her into a runner. Olivia stayed with your brothers. I pushed Liz for her mile that I have been having her to run. Baby steps for her. I ran ahead of her and marked a line in the sand for when she reached her mile cutoff. I had her turn around while I ran a few more miles and met up with her back on the boardwalk by our condo. It felt good tonight, running on the beach, with Liz by my side. We both had our headphones on and it felt good to get out of my head for a bit. I need that break so much now. It feels good to spend time with Liz and Olivia. Olivia brings out the innocence of being a child that I feel like we have all been robbed of. Liz reminds me of my younger 21-year-old self, back when life was simple but so complicated. I sit back and watch her and the lessons she is learning from all of this. I know it will make her a better person, if that is even possible. I’m actually not sure it is. Both of those girls are unlike anyone one else on this planet. I feel so lucky to have them in our lives. You loved them so much too.

I’m waiting now. Waiting for this Ambien to do it’s work and force me to drift off into my black wall of sleep. I remember nothing about my nights now. No dreams, not even falling asleep. I try not to get too concerned about this and my therapist agrees. We talked about this Ambien thing the other day. She said if I weren’t processing things during the day and during the time that I write to you at night, that it may be a different story. We both agreed that as of now, I need a break from all of this reality in the form of sleep. I hate it though. Never in my life have I had trouble sleeping. I now have to fight off the demons that live inside of my head as the night slowly creeps in. Your brothers are both in bed with me. They look so peaceful and beautiful. But it is so painful to not have you in here with us too. I can just picture you snuggled up beside us. That image lasts about 10 seconds before my mind automatically goes to you, lying in your bed at the Ryan House, as you were preparing for your last breaths. I watched as your little body gave out and your heart stopped beating. How quickly your little body turned still and cold and your lips, a soft shade of blue. I think about how I gave you a bath after you died, everyday. I remember I was so mad that I couldn’t get the sharpie pen off of your body from your radiation treatment the previous day. I wanted you to be perfectly clean, but I could not get the black sharpie off of your hips. I wanted to take a picture of you so badly, but just could not bring myself to do it. I have my last picture with you before you died and it is awful. You didn’t even look like the same little boy. You weren’t a little boy anymore. Your body, your face, your eyes….. everything had evolved into a man who would have been in his 90’s. That’s why you were so wise beyond your years, that’s why you loved me so much. I sometimes think you were really an old man trapped in a child’s body. It’s the only way I can fucking justify this bullshit. I think your spirit was so much older than the physical you and your spirit was ready to go on and move on to other things as you felt like you had done your job here. Now, I feel like you are really here, still watching over us, and showing your presence in different ways. If we ever have something good happen in our life again, I know it will be you who has made it happen, Ronan. You will be the one that we thank because you are now taking care of us. I’m o.k. with this, but I’m also fucking pissed about this. I wanted to be the one taking care of you, for the rest of my life. That was my job and I totally failed. I didn’t fail in loving you because you know how deeply connected our love was. I failed because you died. I don’t care what anyone says to try to tell me otherwise. I let you down. I promised you we would get you all better, that your daddy would coach your basketball team, that you would play on a baseball team, all the places we would take you and things we would do. I broke all of my promises to you. I hate myself everyday for this, Ro. I’ll never forgive myself.

I’m sleepy now baby. Time to close my eyes. Yoga in the morning. I hope you are safe, warm, and peaceful. Sweet dreams my favorite not spicy monkey boy. I love you to the moon and back.

xoxo

My Ro. I miss you so.

 

 

 

 

Ronan. I think it’s been a few days since I’ve written. The days are still creeping along, ever so slowly. You’re still gone and I am still here. Barely. We are still at the beach. It’s getting closer to the time when we will leave this place, and return home. The thought of that makes my stomach turn. Back to reality. In a big way. Back to life going on, without you here. Your brothers will return to school and life will move forward. I don’t know how I am going to do this without you. It doesn’t seem possible.

I’m not really sure how the days have been going by; but they have. My memory is still foggy as I sit and try to recall how we’ve spent our time. A little time at the beach, eating out, seeing some movies, running….. I think I’ve slept a lot. Mostly just laying in bed, missing you. Not really living as I’m still not ready to. I had dinner with your daddy last night. It was a sad dinner. Everything with him is sad because we are both so sad about you. We talked about you a little, but dinner was mostly filled with silence and small talk. We saw a movie afterwords and it was really hard for us both to sit though it. My lack of concentration is distracting to everything I do, even trying to sit through a mind numbing movie. You would think things like that would be easy for me, but they are not. Even the simplest things have become difficult.

I think I’ve been avoiding phone calls. Crap. I haven’t called your Nana back in a week. Grandpa Steve has called for weeks and I haven’t returned his phone calls either. I’d really just prefer it if I weren’t here in this world anymore to worry about returning phone calls or having people worry about me. I just wish I were with you. Not my choice though, I know. I miss you more than ever.

I’m reading a new book. I like it so far, although I’m not that far into it. It’s called, “The Other Side of Sadness.” It’s basically about the way the mind works when losing a loved one. It is making sense to me as it’s more of a scientific approach to the way the mind and body work when dealing with so much pain. I think I’ll finish it in a few days, but it takes me longer to read books now. I used to fly right though them, absorbing everything easily. Now, I find myself having to go back and re read things and taking the words at a slower pace. It’s as if I’m becoming an entirely different person. Even the way I read a book is fucking different now. Just when I thought I had myself and life all figured out. Turns out, I knew nothing and I only really existed as the person I was, due to being your mom. I don’t know who I’m supposed to be without you. You were such a big reason to why I was the way I was. That person seems gone. I do get glimpses of her every once in a while. Certain people bring out parts of me that I miss so much. Macy is one of them. So are Liz and Olivia. I guess it’s because I feel so comfortable around them. One second I can be looking at Macy, and we will both be crying about you and a second later a song will come on and the next thing I know we are singing our lungs out together to an old school song, while laughing so hard we can hardly breathe. Thank god for those moments…. I need to be around people who make me laugh. Laughter really is the best medicine. For a few minutes a day, it makes me happy again.

I started Liam and Quinn in a camp over here today. They desperately need something to keep them busy, especially Quinn. He’s been really clingy to me which is understandable, but also not healthy for either of us. They both seemed to think it was o.k. and the will go back all week. I am hoping they will like it a little more tomorrow. I think it looks like a really fun camp, but I know for Quinn it’s just that he is separated from me and worries about where I am, what I’m doing, and if I’m coming back. He seems unsure about everything no matter how much I try to convince him that nothing is going to happen to me. What I really want to do is scream that he is absolutely right, that he is so fucking smart, that there are NO guarantees in life, and something could happen to me, as they could happen to any of us at any time of the day, because they can. Look at you, baby. My healthy, strong, baby boy who had this fucking cancer eating away at his body and nobody knew it. Quinn is completely right, completely intuitive, but that is not proper knowledge for an 8-year-old to know. It’s my job as his mom, to reassure him that everything is going to be o.k., when I know this in fact, could be a fucking lie. I am trying my best to protect the shred of innocence that your brothers have left. They have had to learn such a very hard lesson, one that a child should never have to learn. I have to make a choice with this lesson. I can either let it destroy them, or make them in to better human beings because of it. I am working on making them better human beings, trying to take losing you and the lessons that have come with it and turning it into something positive. It feels like such bullshit to me though because it’s not the truth. The truth is this is totally fucked and they shouldn’t have had to learn such a hard life lesson this way. All I really want to do is hide in bed, cry, and scream and let your brothers do the same. I can’t though. I have to go on, I have to give them what tiny pieces of me that I have left. I am giving them everything I have, but it is not much. They really are amazing little boys though. Such good, sweet, funny, smart, boys. Liam has the mind of a 30-year-old and Quinn and his memory that blows me away. I do find myself blown away during many points of the day over things that they say or do. Life has so quickly gotten ahead of me and it’s as if I cannot catch up, no matter how hard I try.

O.K. baby. I think I’m tired now. It’s 2:30 a.m. Ambien is kicking in. UGH. Once again I had so much more to say to you but just cannot do it tonight. Just know I miss you so much. I love you to the moon and back and hope you are safe. G’night my Ro baby. Love you forever.

xoxo

 

Just say no to death do us part…….. time to update wedding vows people. What if your child died? Did you ever think about that while saying them???

Ro

Ronan. Hi my love. I hope you had a good day. That sounds so weird to say, because how could any day possibly be good when we are apart?? I miss your giggles so much. The world is so empty without them. I know I say this all the time, but I would give anything to have you back. I tell you all the time to please take me with you. I know you can’t, as you wouldn’t do that to your daddy or brothers but I miss you so much.

Today was a long day. The kind of days that I seem to have pretty often now that you are gone. I managed to keep Quinn busy though. We hung out at our place and then I took him and Olivia for lunch. We came back to the condo after and hung out. Olivia helped me clean everything as we needed to get ready for Liam and Papa Jim’s arrival. She is such a big help to me. Quinn looks up to her like a sister and she is a really good playmate for him. He gets lonely when she is gone as he loves having her around. I do too.

After we cleaned, we got ready and met up with Liz. The 4 of us walked and had sushi. It was a nice dinner but it always feels weird to be doing things without you. Between, Quinn, Olivia, and Liz, I was able to keep it together as they all provided much laughter. We walked around the island a bit and started making our way back to The Shores. As we were crossing the street, I looked up at locked eyes with a mama who was pushing her little boy in a stroller. I was dying inside because of her little boys amazing, curly, red hair. I smiled at her and she looked at me and goes, “Maya!” She approached me and introduced herself and gave me a warm hug. She follows this blog as does her sister whom I had the pleasure of meeting as well. We have mutual friends and the friends we are all friends with are GEMS….. so I know these two women must be as well:) We chatted for a few minutes and I managed to only get choked up once. It was so sweet, so rewarding, and it just felt good to hear them say that they think about you everyday. How I will never be without you because you live in each and every one of them. How you’ve inspired them to do something more with their lives. Nothing will ever be worth losing you for, Ro. But in losing you, people are finding what it truly means to live a life you are grateful for. Do I hate that it has to be you and me teaching this lesson? Absolutely. But we cannot control our fate, our destiny, what is being set out in front of us. It is not up to us so we have to just give in and trust that this is what our purpose in life is supposed to be. To help others see their way, to help them be more grateful and kind, to let them help us by raising awareness for you and Neuroblastoma or childhood cancer in general.

As I was talking to those two beautiful ladies today, I honestly felt you there by my side. It was weird. At one point, I looked down at my feet to see if you were there. That is how much I felt your presence. I then looked over at Liz and gave her a teary smile. Liz is my home, my heart, part of my soul. She gets it. She knew you were there today too….. I could tell just by looking at her. I was honored to meet both of you today and just wanted to tell you thank you again for loving and supporting strangers whom you didn’t even know, until today. I can’t wait to see you again.

After our “meeting random strangers,” whom I don’t know but they pretty much know everything about me…. which is weird but I’m oddly comfortable with it….. we went back to our condo. It as time to get ready to pick up Liam and Papa Jim at the airport. It’s been nice having some one on one time with Quinn. He’s really opened up to me and we had some pretty intense conversations. He is like a little sponge and never forgets anything I do or say. I got to watch him open back up to me again and he told me how hard it was on him to not have me around to take care of him when Ronan was sick. I told him I knew, and that it was hard on everybody. But we didn’t have a choice. We had to take care of Ronan the best we could and I’m sorry that I had to be away from him for so long. I hope he will forgive me. I would have done the same thing for him and I tell him this all the time. I just hope he really believes it. An 8 year olds mind is such a fragile thing when dealing with a tragedy. I don’t have all the answers and this is when the therapy will come into play when we get back. I recognize that we all will be needing it pretty intensely.

I was thinking about this the other night on one of my runs. For some reason I started thinking about wedding vows. The whole, “Until death do us part.” I couldn’t stop thinking about it and I thought to myself, I’ll bet when people say those vows, they don’t take into consideration if the child would be the one to die….. would death do them part?? I think people say that vow just thinking of one another, as man and wife; never a child because that is just too horrific and does not happen. WRONG. BIG FAT LIE. It happens. And I am so freaking glad Woody and I did not say those vows to each other. Not that they are awful…. but we are just different. We had E.J. Kotalik marry us because it was important to us to make them a part of our family. I never knew how much we would truly need them. We now need them more than ever. We didn’t read the traditional vows. We read a poem by E.E. Cummings, instead. One of my favorites:::::

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
i fear
no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)

It was perfect for us and still is. And whomever is telling my mom the statistics for people who divorce after the death of a child….. Seriously needs to stop. This is not something a grandmother who has just lost her grandson and who is worried sick about her daughter, needs to hear. I know the statistics, Woody knows them. We know who we are. We know that throughout all of this, we’ve stayed on the same page with pretty much everything. We know we are each others best friends. He has my heart and I have his. Forever. End of story. We don’t do drama, we don’t do hurt, we don’t do fighting (unless you count the time I threw a slurpie at his head) We do love. We love our twins. We love each other. We are not going to let cancer ruin anything else for us. MOTHERFUCKERCANCER. You’re not taking anything else away from me. You took the most precious thing that has ever been mine and I will fight you until you die and exist no more. YOU FUCKWAD.

Oye! Ronan! I’d better be signing off now. Before I get too bloody out of control! I love you my not spicy favorite monkey. I hope you are safe. I hope someone is taking good care of you. I just want you back here with me. Please. This life is too hard without you. I LOVE YOU TO THE MOON AND BACK RO.

xoxox

Yay! Awesome! Best 4th of July, EVER!!!! (bullshit)

 

Ronan. 4th of July is over baby. I’m still here. Quinn is sleeping in the middle of my bed and Macy is on the other side of him. I made it through today, by the skin of my teeth. I woke up this morning and went for a run with Macy. Well, kind of. She ran on the beach and a I ran along the bay. She went into town to get us coffees after and braved the madness of Coronado. I couldn’t handle it. We didn’t go to the parade this year, but Macy saw some of the action. She saw the Clonetroopers, Master Yoda, and some other Star Wars characters. I am glad I didn’t see that, as I’m sure my reaction would have been horrific. Macy would have had to carry me back home. After I finished my run, I came back upstairs to your Nana, Daddy, and brothers who had cooked breakfast. I wasn’t hungry, but ate a little fruit and some eggs just to get everyone off my case. We got showered and Quinn headed down to the beach with Nana and Macy, and I headed to the tennis courts with Liam and your daddy. It was really warm here today, but the tennis was still fun. Your brothers are both naturals. I think I need to get them signed up for lessons. I tried to act like I was really good and kept talking smack to your daddy about how I wasn’t trying, which is why I wasn’t playing well. UGH. Turns out, I am not that great at tennis. And I am pretty much good at every sport. Tennis is not one of them. I’m o.k with that. I’m happy to admit that your daddy totally kicked my butt today. It’s a fun sport though and we had a fun time playing. It meant a lot to Liam.

We headed down to the beach where we met up with The Kotaliks and 50,000 other people. The beach was packed head to toe with people everywhere. I was soon annoyed by all the drunken idiots and we packed up our things and left. No, today I was not in the mood to watch a 60-year-old man with his shirt off, drunk, and dancing to “Jessie’s Girl.” Sorry, but I just wasn’t feeling it. The whole being wasted in front of your kids thing really bothers me. I just don’t get it and it makes me sad. The same thing applies to smoking. Last night, I was waiting outside a restaurant with Macy, Liz and Heather. There was a mom crossing the street, carrying her Louis Vuitton bag, with her young kids walking beside her. She was SMOKING in front of them, just casually in the middle of Coronado. I have become so sensitive to the whole smoking thing that people CHOOSE to do; but to do it in front of your kids…. that’s just taking it to a whole new level. I made Macy chase her down just to prove that I was not just seeing things. I should have handed her one of your little bracelets and told her how you died of cancer at 3 and not by the fate of your own hands. Maybe then, she would have decided to stop smoking and maybe you would have saved her life and the life of those kids’ mommy. Because if you smoke long enough people…. pretty much sure you will die of lung cancer if you don’t die of something else first. Plus, not to mention what it does to your skin, teeth, nails, and breath. That is just foul.  And rude. And I don’t care if I’m judging because my son died of cancer and the fact that you people are here, roaming the earth, and harming your bodies, upsets me. Your body is a temple. Treat it like one! I know if Ronan would have had the chance to grow up, he would have never harmed his little body as he learned such a hard lesson as to what it means to live a healthy life. What a gift it is. He would have been so grateful and thankful for his chance to live his life. But he didn’t get a chance. He had his chance stolen away by something that was not his fault or his choice. Fuck cancer. And fuck cigarettes. And fuck drunk parents who drink in front of their kids, get wasted, and totally embarrass them in a restaurant.

I witnessed all of this stuff tonight and I had no tolerance for it. All I could think about while I tried to eat a few bites of my chicken taco at the mexican food restaurant, was how much I missed Ronan. I have the best picture of him from a couple of years ago…. 4th of July weekend where we were sitting down in the restaurant tonight and he was chowing down on a chicken taco. I wanted to be time warped back to that moment so badly. Instead, I sat and cried, watched my mom and Macy cry as the idiot family next to us continued to suck back drink after drink with their young kids around. They got really loud and the kids were mortified. I see things like this all the time now that you are gone Ronan. People who take so much for granted in life. I would have given anything to have had you in that restaurant tonight and I would not have wasted my time with you by getting drunk. I would have been the doting mom, I always was to you… to make sure you had eaten enough, and that your brothers were o.k. I would have had a hard time sitting still as you always kept me on my toes. That was so more than enough for me. I was so happy to play that role. I’m so pissed that role is gone now. I, of course get to play it with Liam and Quinn, but it’s not the same. They are independent enough that if I leave for a couple of hours they are fine with it and I am fine because I’m not worried about them. If you were here with us, you know I would have a hard time even being away for an hour from you. Because you would have only been 4 and a 4-year-old requires so much more than 8 year olds do. I missed you so much in that restaurant tonight that at one point I thought I was going to hyperventilate. We left in a hurry to get out of there and headed to meet Auntie Karen and the girls to watch the fireworks from her patio.

Coronado has the best fireworks. Remember them from a couple of years ago, Ro? You were 2 and we had the best seats in the house, right on the terrace by our condo. Tonight, the fireworks just made me sad. I found myself wondering if you could see them from where you are. Wondered who you were watching them with. I wondered who was taking care of you. Are you brushing your teeth? Are your fingernails getting clipped? What p.j.’s are you wearing?? I wonder if you are sad that you don’t have GiGi with you, because we kept it here with us. I wonder these things all the time. Who is doing MY job for you??? I don’t care who it is, because it is just wrong. Nobody should be doing these things for you except me. I need you to come back. I need you to make the most impossible thing in the world, possible. I NEED YOU BACK. We all do. Everyone is so sad, Ronan. So sad all the time. Nobody is handling this well. The only thing that will fix this is you. Somebody just needs to drop you off on our doorstep tomorrow and say they are so sorry, that this was all an experiment and that you are perfectly fine and healthy. My mind is so far gone, that I can almost make myself believe that it is a possibility that it could happen. You know what else my mind is trying to do to me??? I think the pain of having you gone is so intense that my mind is trying to trick me into thinking you never existed. That you were simply a figment of my imagination. I think my mind is going into protection mode and it is trying to make me think I made you all up. That you were never mine. That I didn’t have the most perfect little boy for almost 4 years. It almost convinced me yesterday. I had to stop and ask myself several times if you were really real. My mind is tying to make me forget you because the pain of having you gone is too much. I am aware of what it is doing, but it takes me a couple of seconds to form a memory of you to prove my mind wrong. You were real. You did exist. You were my best friend. You were my other half. You loved me. I loved you. Remember that time I was training for the NYC Marathon and you were about 2 years old?? I loved you so much and you loved me so much that we didn’t want to be separated for my Saturday morning training run of 13 miles, so I just put you in the jogger and ran with you the whole way. You were so content and happy because you knew it was me pushing you and we were together. I felt so blessed and lucky to have you with me. I’ll never forget that day… you hardly made a peep.

I had to take your daddy to the airport tonight. I was sad to drop him off. He was sad to leave us. After I dropped him, the tears started flooding down my face. I said to myself, please let a good song come on the radio so I can stop crying and blast the music. Oh hello, my little friend Ronan. Not 2 seconds later, a Prince song came on. You know, my all time favorite, artist, before he went all crazy and totally changed his music. It was an oldie but a goodie. “Erotic City.” You know I blasted that as loud as I could and laughed the whole time it was on. It could not have been a more perfect song to have come on. If it would have been something like, “Wind Beneath my Wings,” I would have totally driven my car off of the Coronado Bridge. Thanks for that today, Ro. Best song ever;)

I know I haven’t written in a few days and I’m sorry. I’ve been totally absorbed in the people around me. Your brothers, your daddy, your Nana, New York Miss Macy, Liz,  Auntie Karen, Olivia, and Liz’s friend, Heather. We have been doing things like playing tennis, having movie nights, some intense board game nights… I had a night out with Macy, Liz and Heather last night that was much needed. Innocent, girly, bonding time. We watched dolphins at the beach during sunset, had pizza, held hands, laughed, and cried from laughing so hard. These long days and night where I am all consumed with people make me exhausted by the time I get to bed. I’ve just kind of needed a break from staying up so late to write to you. I feel guilty about it too. I know h0w silly that is, but it’s though this writing to you that I still feel so connected. I feel like you know what I am saying and I don’t like the days that I don’t write and you have to miss out on what I am saying or the things I want to share with you. I know I talk to you all day in my head, but so much more comes out when I write it.

O.k. little bug. It’s 3 a.m. and I’m supposed to get up for yoga at 8 tomorrow. I told Macy tonight that I feel like my body needs an exorcism or something. Everything feels off. Everything is sore, tight, tense, and I feel like I have a ton of toxins in my body although I don’t see how that’s possible. I’ve been living off of humus and cauliflower. As well as prescription meds so maybe that could be part of it too…. I told her I think I need acupuncture or something. Everything is off. Even my run was off today. Boo for that. Tomorrow is a new day. Yoga may be the answer. We shall see, my love. Ronan. You know how much I love you. You know how much I miss you. You know how hard I am trying to be strong and it is SO hard. I will keep trying and I will never stop missing you so much that it hurts. That will last forever. I love you to the moon and back baby. I hope you are safe.

xoxo

A little hummingbird told me……

Ronan. You should have been here today with us. I forced myself to have a better day today. Forced myself up out of bed, out into the delicious San Diego sunshine, out on to the beach; armed with my surfboard. I knew the only way I was going to get though this day today, was by getting my ass kicked in the ocean. That’s precisely what I did. I welcomed the angry ocean with open arms as I tried my best to get up on my board; only to miss the curl of the wave over and over again. To be ripped under the water where the salt water stung my eyes and I choked on the bitter taste of the sea. Happiness. Torture. Hurt. Pain. I felt it today out there and I wish I could say it quenched my thirst for what I am missing in life now. But it didn’t. Not even close. But I knew if I didn’t get out, and try to live….. well, that’s not going to be good for anyone. And as I’ve said before, this is not just about me. As much as I selfishly wish it were sometimes. There are other people involved. Other little people whom I have to take care of.

After I surfed for a while, Quinn came out to join me. I put him on my board and pushed him out past the waves. I carried him out as far as I could go and turned him around to wait for the right wave to come. He missed the first one, and toppled under the water. We tried again and this time, he got up easily and rode the wave all the way into the shore. Liam came out as well just to splash around. We played out in the ocean for a while until your daddy pointed out the dead Sting Ray on the shore. We decided to come in after that. I hope I never meet one of those guys in the ocean. They do not look like somebody I would like to be friends with.  After the beach, we went up to the pool and enjoyed the rest of the summer day.

Your daddy had to head back to AZ tonight for the rest of the week. We went out for dinner and dropped him off at the airport. We headed back to Coronado and decided to walk to the Hotel Del for ice cream. Your brothers seem happy. It’s strange to watch just the two of them interact now and how their relationship is changing. It’s as if they have to get to know each other all over again. You were such a big part of them. It’s almost as if you were such a strong force between them, as you had such a different relationships with both of them. Everything you brought into this world was unique and special and that includes the bond you had with your brothers. We all feel lost and awkward. It’s hard to sit back and watch all of this. It was hard for me to take your brothers for ice cream at The Del tonight. I know you know this. I know you can feel me because at my saddest point tonight, as the sun was setting on our way back from ice cream, I looked up and there was a little hummingbird. Flying right in front of us. Quinn and Liam both started laughing and chased it. It kept fluttering away, but only to turn right back to us again. It landed on a tree right in front of The Shores and it stood still on a branch as we came over to look at it. It stood still for a couple of minutes and Quinn kept insisting that I take a picture of it. I took one on my iphone for him. This little hummingbird didn’t move the entire time we watched it. We finally walked away, and I told the little hummingbird, “Bye Ronan.” Your brothers said, “Bye, Ro,” as well. It was a sweet moment that reminds me as lonely, lost, and scared as I feel without you; that I am never truly alone.

I spent the rest of the night playing with your brothers. I caught up on a couple of phone calls that were way overdue. This whole “hiding,” thing of mine that I like to do, is hard on my friendships. Not hard in the way that I worry about losing my friends; because the one’s that have stuck around are in it for the long haul. Forever. It’s hard in the respect that I just truly miss them and the simpleness that our friendships used to consist of. Nothing is simple anymore. I’m complex and any illusions about life being easy or fair, has been ruined for them. It must be hard to be on the other side of this and to kind of be sitting back on the sidelines; watching. Watching and waiting because you don’t want to overstep your boundaries. I am aware of my little angels surrounding me though. I know they are all still there, and giving me time to grieve. I am so thankful for that. When the time is right, I will see my friends again and all of their beautiful smiles that I miss so much. I am forever and eternally grateful and thankful for the love of my friends. I am a very lucky girl in regards to them.

We finished up our night, just the 3 of us by watching a movie together. Your daddy will not be back here all week. I’ve got to find some things to do to keep everyone entertained and happy. I’ve got to be a mom, to your brothers, like I used to be without the help of anyone else. I haven’t really done this since you were diagnosed almost a year ago. It’s going to be a challenge to say the least. The things that used to come so effortlessly to me, are now the most difficult. Being a mom. Being a wife. Just being Maya. Adios to that Maya. She no longer exists. I don’t know who I am without you. I hope to find my way back someday, but as of now, I am completely lost. At the end of the day, I am just happy that I am one day closer to being reunited with you. I miss you so much.

That’s all tonight my baby doll. I’ve given up on this trying to sleep without the help of my Ambien experiment as well. The pain of having to survive the nights of not sleeping, but instead lying in bed and feeling as if every part of me is burning with pain is not something I am capable of handling. Bring on the Ambien.

I love you. To the moon and back forever and ever. Sweet dreams, my love. I hope you are safe.

xoxo

A Sea of Sadness

 

 

Ronan. Hi baby. I’m waiting to board my flight back to San Diego. It’s late. I had to leave you tonight and somehow I made it to the gate of the plane. I had an o.k. day. I kept busy and luckily I had enough things around Phoenix to do to keep me that way. I ended my o.k. day with dinner at my favorite restaurant, Chelsea’s Kitchen, with my lovelies, Tricia, Danielle, Marisa, and Stacy. It was a good dinner and it felt good to be with my girlfriends. Tricia took me back home after dinner and she and Marisa helped me pack up my things to get back to San Diego. I didn’t have much to pack, but they helped me with little things too like making my bed and picking up little things here and there. I kissed your urn goodbye and told you I loved you. I had a hard time leaving the bedroom where you sit, all alone in the dark. I didn’t want to go. Marisa left me with a hug goodbye and an I love you. I miss her so much. As soon as I sat down in Tricia’s car so she could take me to the airport, I started to bawl. I stared at your bedroom window and all I could think about was how you were never going to play in there again. Tricia pulled out of our driveway and held my hand. I cried all the way to the airport and said things out loud to her that I don’t really say to other people, but I think in my head all the time. She asked where I thought you were. I told her I didn’t know and how hard that is for me. She told me that she thinks you are always with me. In my heart of hearts, I think that too, but it doesn’t ease the pain any less. When we got to the airport, she insisted on coming in with me instead of just dropping me off at the curb. I didn’t put up a fight.
She walked me to security where we both cried, hugged, and she told me how she would never let me go. How we will get through this. How much she misses me. I just held her tight and told her I knew. I hate so much, that you, her first godson, are gone. I will never forget the day I asked her to be your Godmom. It was such a special moment in my life.  I hate how badly she hurts. She was with your Daddy and I when you came into this world. She was the one holding my hand with your Daddy as I screamed for another epidural. She saw how perfect you were after you were born. And then she stood with me as you were diagnosed with cancer. She held my hand through everything and watched as you got sicker and sicker, but refused to believe the worst. She watched the worst come true. She watched you come into this world and she watched as you left. Along with feeling the pain of missing you, I feel the pain of everyone else around me too. How can one person be given so much to handle in life?? How am I expected to survive this when not only do I feel like dying because you are gone, but because everywhere I look, I see nothing but sadness and tears in everyone else’s eyes. I am swimming in a sea of sadness and all I want to do is drown. I don’t even want to use the word, unfair anymore because that is such a weak word. This is beyond unfair. It’s mother fucking fucked up.
 Today, as I made it though the day without crying, I sat in the waiting room of my therapists office and I was going through all of my new emails. I saw one that was from Dr. Mosse from Chop. She sent me a real, heartfelt email that said things such as she hoped it wasn’t  too disruptive or painful to hear from her. She simply wanted to reach out and say hello, to let me know that you are in her thoughts as she comes to work everyday and thinks of you as she works harder to find a cure for Neuroblastoma. For something so simple and so little, it meant the world to me.  I started crying as I read her words and sent her a quick email back to thank her for taking the time out of her very busy life to check in on us. I told her how I am struggling and a big part of this comes from the what if part of if we would have chosen her path, for your treatment. I told her that I will always second guess our decision. I told her how I was sorry because I didn’t listen to my heart after our first meeting with her. When we first met Dr. Mosse, I sent Fernanda a text that simply said, “It’s her. She’s going to be the one to save our baby.” Then we went out to New York and met with Dr. Kushner, whom I really liked. Whom I really believed too. So, I shoved my “gut,” feeling down as far as I possibility could and ignored what was in my heart. I will always wonder, what if. Your daddy and I have gone over and over this. He is sure if we would have went to CHOP, that your outcome would have been the same. The bottom line is, we will never know. We will never know and you are gone. Something has to be done about this. Someday, a cure has to be found for this disease and it has to be understood because no family should go through something as horrific as this.
Tonight, I feel weak, scared, and sad. Tonight, the feeling is back like I cannot breathe. I would like to go to sleep and never wake up just the way you did. Tonight, the pain of being on this airplane all alone, without you, is just too much. Where is my Bryson friend when I need him? There are no Bryson’s on this plane tonight. It is full of people. People who are busy. People who are happy. People who are unhappy. People who are unsatisfied. People who don’t care. People who have no idea how many children die of childhood cancer everyday. People who have no idea what it means to truly feel, to truly live, to truly be grateful for every little thing they have in their lives. At one point in my life, I used to be like these people. Unaware of how precious life TRULY is, because life just WAS. It was a given, not a gift. I never took the time to fully understand how precious life really is, how precious every moment in life, no matter how good or bad truly is because whatever it was…. I was alive and I had 3 healthy children and I never second guessed that things would be any different. Now I know. I know because you are gone and I am the closest to knowing what it feels like to being dead, while being alive. I don’t want this life without you, Ro. But I also respect that this life is not my choice and I cannot decide when it is my time to be with you again. I respect that I have to take care of your brothers, your daddy, our friends, and family. I have a lot of people who I cannot let down. I cannot let you down either.
So sorry for the pity part tonight, my love. I will push though this, pick my head back up, and stay focused on the job that you have given me to do. I refuse to fail you. I love you, Ronan. To the moon and back baby boy.
I wrote that last night, Ro. But was too tired to finish it. I had a hard day today. We spent the day moving out of the unit that we have been in for a month and into a new unit. It’s a different building, overlooking the bay, and it is pretty much the same layout of the unit that we stayed in over here when you were just a year old. This has opened a floodgate of memories for me and I have spent the majority of the day crying. As I was unpacking the car with your daddy, he noticed my tears. He picked me up off the ground and held me for a long time. I hate everything in our new life that we are doing without you. I hate that today, I unpacked the car without having to worry about you running around crazily in the parking garage, as I pictured myself having to chase after you to make sure you wouldn’t be hit by a car. Today, I had none of that worry and it is all I wanted.
Once we got settled in our new place, we went into town to eat. We ate at our favorite Burger place here, just the 4 of us. You would have loved the chocolate milkshake that I shared with Quinn. It had a ton of whipped cream on it and your brother laughed as I fed it to him. You used to LOVE your whipped cream. After we had our lunch, we ran into the grocery store to get a few things. As I was walking through the frozen food aisle, there it was. Your Fettucini. I felt like passing out on the spot. I stopped and stared at the Marie Callender’s Fettucini Alfredo that you lived off of while we were in the hospital at PCH. You always hated hospital food and I cannot count the times we would cook this in the microwave together and how happy it made me to watch you gobble it all up. It was the one thing I could always count on you eating. I loved feeding it to you because of all the calories it had in it. I’ll never be able to look at that Fettucini the same again. I’ll never be able to look at a lot of things the same again.
We came back to our unit and tried to get unpacked a little more. Mimi and Papa came over to take Liam and Quinn to see “Cars 2.” Your daddy tried to talk me into going out on a date with him, but I couldn’t muster up the energy to go anywhere. I was just feeling too sad today. I did get out for my nightly run though. I did my usual route; a fast 6 miles. Around mile five, I started to feel sick to my stomach. You know me and my notorious throwing up ways if I run too hard or too fast. Luckily I found some nice bushes out of sight from anyone and out came my one meal of the day…. lunch. I finished the last mile and now here I sit. I still feel sick to my stomach and I’m sure it’s from the combination of you being gone and pushing myself with my 8 minute mile tonight. I had a lot of anger to pound out on the pavement and it seemed as if my feet were on fire. Too bad my body decided that it was too much because it felt pretty good. I haven’t run in a few days which always makes me extra anxiety ridden, depressed, and leaves me with extra nervous energy that I don’t need. I had to get that out tonight otherwise I was going to end up doing something drastic; like eating a bag of donuts.
Alright my little man. This is all for tonight. I miss you so very much. Sweet dreams and I hope you are safe.
P.S. A very Happy Birthday to my dear Laura Leigh Chase. My friend since we were 14. My friend forever. I’ll never forget the day in our 8th grade P.E. class when we got “married.”  It was the most gorgeous, sunshiny day outside and we skipped off, holding hands, and went to pick the flowers on the side of the hill instead of participating with the activity that we were supposed to be doing. Instead, we decorated each other with flower hippie headbands and had some pretend to marry each other ceremony. 17 years later and here we are, mama. I am so proud to still be able to call you one of my best friends. I love you. And I am so happy you married Kasey in real life. Have a beautiful day my dear, sweet friend.
xoxo

The Saddest Hour

Ronan. The night is finally creeping in. Another day done without you here. The days still drag on and on without you, no matter how busy I keep myself. We all woke up this morning and I walked into town. Your brother, Liam, has swimmers ear so I had to pick up his prescription. When I returned back to the condo, your brothers were all ready to hit up the beach. We packed up our things and headed down to the beach. We took a big bag of your little Star Wars guys with us and decided that we would build them a fort for you. Liam was in charge of the “bad guys,” area and Quinn and I were in charge of the “good guys.” It was so hard for me to keep it together for your brothers while we did this today. You would have loved it so much. I took pictures for you so you could see how it turned out. We had fun doing this together in your honor today. Or as much fun as we could without you being here with us.

After the beach, we headed to the pool. It was really nice out today so we played in the pool and the hot tub for a couple of hours. Your brothers are missing you so much. They get so board with each other and without having you around to play with. My entertainment pales in comparison to the way you would have entertained them for hours. I did my best, but they were soon ready to come back up and they were tired from the sun. The rest of our day slowly went by and Mimi and Papa called to see if they could take your brothers to the movies. They both wanted to go and this was a good chance for me to have some quality time with your Daddy. Your brothers left with Mimi and Papa and your Daddy and I went out for our date. We sat at a little restaurant in Coronado for their Happy Hour. So much for that. Happy Hour should have been called  the Saddest Hour because that’s what it turned into. I sat with your Daddy, and pretty much cried the entire dinner. We talked about you the whole time, went over again and again, what we could have done differently. I told your Daddy how much I worry about you and I can’t stop thinking about where you are. The whole time I kept thinking in my head, how I was your mommy and I couldn’t save you. I was supposed to protect you and I will always feel like I failed you. I was supposed to keep you safe, baby. But there was nothing I could do and I’ll never understand how that wasn’t enough. How our love for each other wasn’t enough. Wasn’t anybody listening? Couldn’t they see how much we loved each other and deserved to be together for the rest of our lives? Who would be so cruel to take that away? The love we had for each other was so powerful I was sure it was going to save you. The love you had for me was the same….. something beyond this earth even, Ro. Where are you?!?!?!?! Why did you have to go?!?!?!?!? I will never stop questioning everything, Ro. I will beg for you to come back for the rest of my fucking life.

I didn’t eat much at dinner, but instead I sat and watched how sad your Daddy is too. At one point, the waitress came up to us while my tears were pouring. She quickly walked away. I wondered what she thought I was crying about. I am pretty sure she thought something like a failed marriage, an affair, one of us losing a job. I’ll bet you in a million years she would have never guessed my tears were for you. My tears were because our beautiful boy just died of cancer. Our reality is just too awful to be reality. I still can’t believe all of this and I swear I am still waiting to wake up from this nightmare.

After dinner, we came back to our place but it was so nice out we decided to go on a walk. We walked to The Hotel Del and then down to the beach. We climbed up on some rocks together and looked at all the crabs crawling about. Your Daddy was looking out to the ocean and all of a sudden, a fin appeared. The next thing we knew we were watching a bunch of dolphins jump about. One of your little signs, baby?? I’ll take it, but it still doesn’t make me miss you any less. I grabbed your Daddy from behind and wrapped my arms around him as we stood for a long time together and watched them play about. It was peaceful and I wished so badly that we could just be that normal, happy, couple that we used to be. Back when you were here and we had nothing to be sad about. Now, we will be branded for life as the couple who lost a child. Sadness will always be a part of our togetherness. All innocence we once had will never be again and therefore, we as a couple will never be the same. Will we come out of this stronger? I don’t think we have a choice. We have to as we have too much to lose if we do not. But the sadness that now exists in our world hurts so much, Ro. Nights like tonight though are important to the both of us. Grieving about you, together is something I haven’t been ready to do yet but I can slowly feel myself coming around. I can’t do this all alone and I feel like I can heal better by letting my guard down a bit. As much as I want this wall up, keeping everyone out…. that isn’t going to do anyone any good and I really need to stop just thinking of myself as there are other people hurting just as badly as I am. Your Daddy being one of them. The bottom line is, he needs me and I need him. I need to be better about remembering that as it is very easy to get wrapped up in my own little world where nobody else exists except me and my pain for you. Sometimes I prefer it that way, but this is not healthy. I will try harder for you, baby. For our family.

After our date, we came back to our condo and I slipped out for my run. UGH. I was so not feeling it tonight but I pushed through my 6 miles at a sluggish pace of a 9 minute mile. What the heck is that?? I’ve been pretty consistent with my 8:23 minute mile. Tonight was brutal. At one point, I wanted to stop and walk but I heard you in my head so I refused to stop. Thanks for that extra push tonight when I needed it most. The rest of the evening was spent playing with your brothers and Daddy. We played PS3 together… something I don’t do very often but it ended up being pretty fun. We played Call of Duty: Black Ops. I was on a team with Quinn and we beat your Dad and Liam. There was a lot of laughing and I think your brothers were surprised at my mad shooting skills. Never underestimate the power of your mama… video games and all.

This is all for tonight my love. Until we meet again, hopefully in my dreams tonight. I love you, Ronan. Forever and Ever. Just you and me, baby. I hope you are safe.

xoxo

Love is enough

Ronan. Hi baby. I miss you so much. Today was an o.k. day. I slept in with your brothers and we cuddled in bed for a long time this morning, just watching cartoons. It was a lazy morning, a quiet morning, a cuddly morning. I wish I could say that these mornings bring me peace, but they do not. They just make me miss you more. They just make me want you here so badly, where things were never quiet because you were always up to something.  I was always having to look after you because if I turned my back for a second, you would have done something crazy and silly. Now, without you, I don’t have to look over my shoulder at all times. I can go to the beach with Liam and Quinn and sit quietly without having to worry about them. They are big enough and independent enough that I can just let them be. I hate this so much. I don’t want to be the mom with nobody to look after at the beach. I don’t want to be the mom that doesn’t have to worry about you eating sand, throwing sand, running out too far in the ocean. I remember those days that I had to worry about all of those thing with you and I loved them so much. I miss them so much. I fucking hate this life without you.

Laura, Kasey, Cameron, and baby Chase all came over and we spent the day down at the beach. I sat quietly for a while and it was so peaceful that I couldn’t handle it. I soon got up and played football with your brothers. I drew a start and finish line in the sand and I raced them both a bunch of times. I watched them wrestle and throw sand at each other. I watched them be boys. Boys who are having to learn how to be brothers again without you. It is such a different dynamic now. I feel like a foreigner living in a different country trying to figure out this new life. How to fit in, how to adapt, and how to survive.

After our beach and pool time, we headed up to the condo to get showered and ready for dinner. I talked the Lunds into staying with us for a day or two. We love having them here and your daddy was so excited that they said yes as he was going to miss out on seeing them due to being in Phoenix. We could really use some Thompson/Lund family time now. We ended up grabbing pizza in town and bringing it back to our place to eat. Laura and Kasey offered to watch the boys so I could head out for a run which I gladly took them up on. I have a new little route I’ve found and I’m loving it. It’s a perfect 6 miles total. It felt good and I of course talked to you a lot. I cried a lot on my run too. I wish I could think of something other than the last few hours of your life, but as of now, it is those memories that consume me on my runs. I go over and over them in my head. I go over and over what we could have done differently. This always upsets me and it is always while running that these are the things I think about. I remember every second of your death, every detail, every moment. It is as if they are frozen in time and oddly, as sad as these memories make me… I treasure them too. I talked to you tonight after my run as I was cooling off. I yelled your name, I yelled up to the moon that I loved you. I then started to cry and begged for you to let me be with you. To take me with you as I don’t want to be here without you. I want to be with you, wherever you are, together forever. I don’t want this life without you. But unfortunately, this is not my choice to make. If you wanted me with you badly enough, you would find a way to take me with you. I will wait for you, for however long it takes for us to be reunited. I know it would make you too sad to have me not be here for your daddy and brothers, but honestly Ronan, some days all I want is to be gone with you.

Your daddy arrived tonight so I went to pick him up and Uncle Kasey went with me. We stopped by your Daddy’s favorite brewing company here to refill his “Growlers.” I don’t really know what they are, except they are two huge jugs and they fill them up with different beers. I knew your Daddy would be needing a beer tonight after his had few days at work. I was happy to see him and so was Kasey. The “Bromance,” between those two continues. We came back to our place where sleepy kids awaited us, but your daddy and Kasey wanted to hang out. Being the lovely wives that Laura and I are, we happily sent them on their way to some bar on the island. It’s some guy time that your daddy really needs right now and Kasey is the best medicine for him. I hope they stay out as late as possible, drink their selves silly, and your daddy is able to let go and enjoy himself for a few hours. He deserves it.

Last night, before I went to sleep he sent me the sweetest test message. He said, “I love you. You are strong, stubborn, witty, articulate, and sexy. Night night.” That daddy of yours made this mommy smile so big. I know you know how hard things have been for us. How in the world do two grieving parents get though this, stay married, while trying to raise a family? It’s got to be the most stressful thing on a marriage in the world. I don’t know what the secret to all of this is, but we are doing it. Even on the days where I want to run away and never come back because there is too much pain and sadness everywhere I look. Even on the days that I just want to disappear, and run away to Vietnam with Tricia….. I won’t. I can’t. I guess it’s simple. It’s because your daddy loves me and I love him. Love will be enough to get us through this. Love is enough.

I have to go to sleep now baby. It’s late. I’m tired and the Ambien is kicking in. Goodnight my sweet baby boy. I love you to the moon and back. Please be safe, please be happy, please don’t cry. I promise I will meet up with you again. I cannot wait for that day to come, but I will wait for you to take my hand and come and get me. I love you so much, my little seal.

xoxo