Posted by: Kathy | July 11, 2014

Time Moves On…I Still Miss You

Time moves on. Days, weeks, months, and years have passed since I lost my mom to pancreatic cancer on November 16, 2008. Although it’s been over 5 years since my mom’s death, during which we’ve celebrated numerous birthdays, holidays, and milestones, I still miss my mom. I think about her every day.

Here are some facts that time cannot change:

  • There are times when I need my mom
  • There are days when I wish she were with us, with her family
  • There are times when I wonder what would life be like if my mom had not died

I can still picture my mom’s smile. I remember the sound of her voice. I will never forget all that she did for me and how she put her family before herself. My mom was the most giving person I knew and her family meant more to her than anything else in her life.

I talk to my mom at times and I truly believe she hears me. I knows she comes to visit and watches over her family. In spirit, she is with us as we celebrate birthdays or holidays. My mom is always in my heart. I keep the promise I made to her almost 6 years ago − to keep her memory alive for her grandkids. Even though my daughter never really knew my mom, since she died when Nikki was only 2 years old, Nikki knows who her grandmother is and loves her. She understands that one of her grandmoms is in Heaven and she accepts that, probably better than I do. I know my daughter talks to my mom too sometimes. I’ve told her more than once that if she’s ever scared at night to talk to Grandmom Angel, as we call her, and my mom will be there with her.

The pain of my mom’s loss has lessened a great deal, and there are only certain times when a reminder of her death brings me to tears. Fortunately, these times have become few and far between. But that fact will never lessen how much my mom means to me.

Six years ago today, my mom was still alive, but I was petrified of losing her. Five years ago, I was in emotional hell and unable to cope with what life had become. Four years ago, I was still a mess, but I was starting to really deal with all my feelings of grief and loss. Three years ago, I started truly accepting my mom’s death, but her illness, especially that last night, still haunted me. Two years ago, true healing set in. One year ago, I truly accepted the loss of my mom and began to feel peace.

Healing does occur. It occurs at different stages, different times, and in different ways for everyone. There is no right or wrong way to grieve or deal with the loss of a loved one. For me, I think it took longer to heal than others who have been in my situation. But there is no timeline for grieving, only time to deal with the loss from your life. For me, the most important thing was to let myself feel. To let myself grieve. To let myself cry. I tried for over a year to be strong for everyone else, that I didn’t grieve for my own loss. I wanted to appear strong, especially in front of my kids, when inside I was falling to pieces.

Time moves on. Grief lessens. The pain of loss goes away. But no matter how much time passes, I will always miss you, Mom. You were taken from us too soon. I love you.

 

Posted by: Kathy | July 2, 2014

A New Family Member

In March, I wrote about the loss of my dog, Kodi. He was a wonderful friend and companion. Not just a dog, but a member of our family. I thank everyone for their support, understanding, and kind words.

As I wrote, the house wasn’t the same without Kodi. I needed a “big black dog” in my life. For 22 years I’ve owned black Lab mixes and I wanted another one. So I adopted Jade, a Lab-Alaskan Malamute mix.

Jade 8 weeks

Jade and her 7 siblings came from a rescue in Mississippi that takes in dogs who have been left at high kill shelters or just dropped off somewhere. By the time I checked out a site, which was recommended by a friend, only 4 dogs out of this litter were available for adoption. I was amazed at how different all the siblings looked, but I fell in love with Jade.

Jade 9 weeks

I contacted the rescue and after some paperwork, I was approved to adopt Jade. Unfortunately, I had to wait 6 weeks to get her because we were going to Disney for our first family vacation in 11 years. My son’s marching band was performing on Main Street USA. The rescue found someone who could foster Jade until we came back from our vacation. Before I even got her, she had been through a tornado that went through Tupelo, MS. Fortunately, all of the dogs and their foster families were ok.

A few days before getting Jade, the owner of the rescue sent me an updated picture. I was amazed at how much she had grown.

Jade 5-22

 

Jade was 4 months old when I got her. She arrived by transport and I picked her up at a rest stop on the NJ turnpike. I couldn’t wait to hold her.

Jade - transport

Jade 5-24

 

I’ve had Jade for 5 weeks and she’s a wonderful dog. Funny, active, loving. Slowly she is fitting into our family (although one of our cats is still undecided about the new addition). Jade has found a new playmate in Nina.

Jade-Nina 1

 

Jade-Nina 2

 

I haven’t blogged in a few months. Things have been crazy busy. I just wanted to take a minute to share pictures of our new family member.

Jade w toy

 

Jade sleeping_6-14

 

Posted by: Kathy | April 15, 2014

Death Can’t Kill

Death killed my mom’s body, but it did not kill her soul.

Death took away my mom’s physical presence, but it cannot take away her place in the hearts of those who will always love her.

Death keeps new memories of my mom from coming to life, but it will never take away the memories of all the precious moments we shared.

Death is the finality of life on this earth. The ones left behind grieve for the loss. We moved forward. Give away our loved ones clothes. Take down pictures. Remove things that symbolize the person who is gone. But it is not the physical knick knacks that hold true memories. Those special moments live in the heart and mind as feelings and pictures of the past. They will live on in the stories I tell my children, and those I keep close to my heart. Ingrained as a piece of me.

I will never stop loving you, Mom. I will never stop thinking of you or forget all that you did for me and all that we shared. I promise that you will never be forgotten by the family who loves you. Always.

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