Vic’s Mother’s Day roses


Iceberg Roses
Iceberg Roses
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Entrance to Vic’s flat. The Iceberg Rose outside her bedroom window when it was still snow white… 14.9.2011

In 2005 I planted an Iceberg Rose outside Vic’s bedroom window.  It looked pretty and gave her great pleasure.

Roses have always held a lot of meaning for me.

   
Red Roses: A red rose is an unmistakable expression of love. Red roses convey deep emotions – be it love, longing or desire. Red Roses can also be used to convey respect, admiration or devotion. A deep red rose can be used to convey heartfelt regret and sorrow. The number of red roses has special romantic meanings associated with them. 12 red roses is the most popular of all which conveys “Be mine” and “I love you”
White Roses: White is the color of purity, chastity and innocence. White flowers are generally associated with new beginnings and make an ideal accompaniment to a first-time bride walking down the aisle. White flowers can be used to convey sympathy or humility. They also are indicative of spirituality. Hence, white roses also follow suit.
Yellow Roses: Yellow roses are an expression of exuberance. Yellow roses evoke sunny feelings of joy, warmth and welcome. They are symbols of friendship and caring. The yellow rose, like the other roses, does not carry an undertone of romance. It indicates purely platonic emotions.
Pink Roses: There are a lot of variations of the pink rose. Over all, pink roses are used to convey gentle emotions such as admiration, joy and gratitude. Light pink rose blooms are indicative of sweetness and innocence. Deep pink rose blooms convey deep gratitude and appreciation. Pink roses also connote elegance and grace.
Orange Roses: While a yellow rose reminds us of the sun, an orange rose reminds us of a fiery blaze. These fiery blooms signify passion and energy. Orange roses can be used to express intense desire, pride and fervor. They also convey a sense of fascination. These flowers rival only the red roses as messengers of passion in romance.
Lavender Roses: A Lavender rose like its color conveys enchantment. It also expresses “love at first sight”. Darker shades of lavender roses (close to purple) convey a sense of regal majesty and splendor. These roses are used to express fascination and adoration.
Blue Roses: A perfectly blue rose is still elusive like the perfectly black rose. Blue roses cannot be achieved naturally so they represent the unattainable or the mysterious. Blue roses therefore embody the desire for the unattainable. They say “I can’t have you but I can’t stop thinking about you”
Green roses: Green is the color of harmony, of opulence, of fertility. It is also a color indicative of peace and tranquility. Green roses (these are off-white roses with shades of green) can symbolize best wishes for a prosperous new life or wishes for recovery of good health
Black Roses: Black is the color of death and farewell. A black rose, like the blue rose remains elusive. What we know as black roses are actually really dark red roses. Black roses convey the death of a feeling or idea. Sending black roses to someone indicates the death of the relationship.
Mixed Roses: By mixing rose blooms of different colors purposefully, you can create a bouquet of emotions. For example, a bouquet of red and white roses would mean I love you intensely and my intentions are honorable. A random mix of roses would convey mixed feelings or send a message: “I don’t know what my feelings are yet but I sure do like you enough to send you roses.”

The white roses symbolized Vic’s pure heart; the love that filled her precious heart… Vic had no malice in her.  She was a people pleaser with an abundance of love.  Vic loved passionately.  There were no half measures in her life.  She loved the way she lived.  She loved her family, her boys, her friends.  Vic loved life.

At Stepping Stone we started a memorial garden.  Symbolic gestures are part of the healing.  Planting a rose in memory of a loved one brings a certain amount of solace…  I see people come back to check on their roses; they photograph the roses.  Is it a way of clinging to something living that represents a loved one?  I think it may be the case.

I awaited Mother’s Day with trepidation this year.  Yet the morning dawned and I was fine.  I spoke at a church on Hospice that morning.  Jon-Daniel accompanied me.  Poor baby.  He sat through an Afrikaans sermon that I am sure he did not always follow.  I stood in front of the congregation and wished all the mommies a happy Mother’s Day.  I had a smile on my face but my heart wept for Vic’s precious boys who did not have a mom to celebrate the day with.  I wept in my heart for me – I was childless.  It was not a happy day for us.

In the afternoon we went to a nursery and bought roses for the memorial garden.  The boys chose a deep pink and I chose a gentle pink.  It represented Vic’s gentle nature, her femininity and “softness”.  The boys said their rose reminded them of Vic’s boldness;  her passion for life.

We bought Steers Burgers – Vic’s favorite hamburgers and that was indeed her last meal.  We picnicked in the Stepping Stone Garden.  We planted Vic’s roses and released balloons.  Gentle tears ran down our cheeks as we sent up balloons filled with love and longing.

Vic's memorial Mother's Day Rose
Vic’s memorial Mother’s Day Rose

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The Boys Memorial Mother's Day Rose
The Boys Memorial Mother’s Day Rose

A week ago I noticed an amazing thing.  Vic’s white Iceberg roses, planted outside her bedroom window, started turning pink…

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Vic’s message of love – white roses turning pink
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My precious little Angel I am so grateful for the reminders that you are with me.  I wish I could hold you but I know that you see our pain, our empty hearts and that you are trying to reassure us that you are indeed our guardian angels.

 

 

 

 

16 months of Hospice and two special angels in Heaven


In the early hours of my Dad’s 3rd anniversary I feel compelled to give some feedback on Stepping Stone Hospice.

Sixteen months ago, with unbelievable arrogance we started Stepping Stone Hospice. What a journey it has been. We started working from my home with a registered palliative care sister, a wheelchair and very little else.

Sixteen months later we have not only moved into a lovely building but we have increased our In-Patient-Unit for 4 beds, we employ 2 nurses, a staff nurse and a team of 13 palliative trained caseworkers. We have plans to extend the building so we can increase the In-Patient-Unit to 10 beds. Every piece of furniture and equipment was donated by the community and to date we have not asked anyone for a single cent. There have been months where we had to pay the nursing staff from our own pockets, but we have never turned away a patient.

We have received beautiful letters of gratitude, established a memorial rose garden and a reputation as a great Hospice.

I am in total awe of the phenomenal nursing staff who go beyond the call of duty. They will go and sit with a family and their dying loved one at 3am in the morning… On Saturdays and Sundays they interrupt their lives to care for the destitute dying in our community.

We have an amazing group of volunteer caregivers who sacrifice their time to guide the families through the final stages of their loved ones journeys. We cry with the families, hold their hands and sing for the dying.

I am so grateful for this amazing organisation and everyone who is involved with it. I am grateful that Vic’s legacy has made a difference to other end-stage Alzheimer patients. I remember my precious father who fought with every fibre of his body to hold onto his memories, his mind, his family….

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486 days…


486 days; 1 year, 4 months; 69 weeks….

Oh dear God, will this pain never stop? Will my heart ever heal? Will I ever be able to look at a photograph without tears welling up in my eyes? No matter where I am or who I am with – I miss my precious Angel Child.

I know your pain is over. Remember the night you crawled into bed with me and I told you that I looked forward to your pain being over? Did you know that night how many tears I would shed for you? Did you know that my life would change forever?

Yes, I know you did. Your words echo through my mind…”Mommy, I am so worried about you. How will you cope when I am gone?”

My stock standard reply was “I will cope baby. I will remember your pain and be glad that it is over”. How stupid of me.

As time goes by I forget how sick you were my precious little one.

Then I look through my photos. I see your pain. I see death in your beautiful eyes.

You knew how hard it would be. In your infinite wisdom you tried to prepare me. You tried to prepare the boys… Sweetie, nobody or nothing in the world could have prepared me for the pain, the loneliness, the void…

Sometimes I wonder how many days it will be until we meet again. I pray it is soon. This is just too hard.

Time heals as the season changes


New emotions are raw and intense. Think back to when you fell in love for the first time – the butterflies, the beauty in everything….. Colours were more vibrant and life soared through your veins. In a new love we are more forgiving, nicer, gentler… One’s whole life revolves around the other person.

As time marches on, the balance is restored. We settle down to realising that nothing and nobody is perfect and/or everlasting. Sadly life forces the big picture back into our lives, our minds, our vision….

It is the same with grief.

Time heals as the seasons change. Reason does not heal.

When Vic died my entire existence was filled with pain, tears and longing. There was guilt and self-recrimination. It used to echo through my mind “what could I have done different?”  Madness lurked in my mind.

Four hundred and seventy-four days later I still grieve. I still cry. I still feel as if I am losing my mind at times…

The intensity that I experienced immediately after Vic’s death has started diminishing and become softer, gentler… I often sit with a gentle smile on my face remembering Vic as a cute baby, a funny toddler, a difficult teenager and a precious friend, daughter and mother of my grandchildren. I page through old photos and sometimes I laugh out loud at the memories.

Life has started re-emerging. My grief is not less – I have just become used to it. My grief has settled into my heart as snugly as old slippers settle around tired feet. I have grown accustomed to the void in my life.

Heartache has become a part of my life. I feel the sadness in my eyes and smile. Yet I have learnt to laugh again.

Life has gone on… The seasons are changing – again…..

 

 

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Mother Daughter Poem


My words of love to my precious Vic

Precious Gift (Amended to suit)  © Sherri Lawrence

When times seemed too hard to bear and I felt like giving up
I visioned your beautiful face, the twinkle of your eyes and things of such
The bond we created from my womb to the day you were born
Is a mother and daughter bond that can never be torn
With the strength and guidance of God and the blessings he pours down from above
I wanted to be the best mom I could to you and embrace you with all my love
You were as precious as a flower and as gorgeous as a rose
You were specially made to the very tip of your nose
You were as sweet as honey; such an innocent young child
You were brighter than any star in the sky every time you smiled
I wanted you to be proud of who you are and strive to be the best
Put forth your efforts to achieve your goals and let God do the rest
I will always be your mother first, but I was also your friend
You are the most precious gift, that I’ve ever been given

With All My Love,

Mommy

Mommy

 

Source: http://www.familyfriendpoems.com/poem/precious-gift-2#ixzz2xg47iqJ2
Family Friend Poems

I Remember Vic


In the rising of the sun and in its going down, I remember her.
In the blowing of the wind and in the chill of winter, I remember her.
In the opening of the buds and in the rebirth of spring, I remember her.
In the blueness of the sky and in the warmth of summer, I remember her.
In the rustling of the leaves and in the beauty of autumn, I remember her.
In the beginning of the year and when it ends, I remember her.
When I am weary and in need of strength, I remember her.
When I am lost and sick at heart, I remember her.
When I have joys I yearn to share, I remember her.
So long as I live, Vic too shall live,
For Vic is a part of me, As I remember her.

I amended the words of this poem written by Rabbis Sylvan Kamens and Jack Riemer from Gates of Prayer, R.B. Gittelsohn

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Stepping Stone’s first death


Vic was the first Stepping Stone Hospice death.

I was clearing up some filing at the office when I came across Vic’s case notes. Tears ran down my cheeks when I read the observation of the Hospice nurse…

21.11.2012:- Pt gradually getting weak but stable. Pain controlled and up and about

20.12.2012:- Very weak but stable. Pain controlled

3.1.2013 Pt experiencing obstruction. Started on SD (Syringe Driver). Buscopan, Zantac, morphine over 24 hours. Prognosis short

8.1.2013 Pt seen by Dr Sue, very weak. Actively dying. Not eating or drinking. Vomiting much better. Pt still responsive even in deep sleep. Continue SD

11.1.2013 Pt terminally weak but stable on SD. Actively dying. Family up to speed with progress

18.1.2013 Pt R.I.P this am. Peaceful and comfortable at home

Vic’s suffering had been reduced to a couple of lines. A couple of words. No mention of her vomiting blood or did I forget to mention it to the nurse? No mention of her being unable to breathe because of the pain. “Pain controlled”…

The pain of Vic’s death is as fresh as it was a year, a month and 11 days ago.

We have now lived many Hospice deaths. Some have been friends, some strangers that became friends and some strangers that remained strangers. I feel the pain of the mothers whose daughters died in the In-Patient-Unit. I held them and comforted them, but I could not take their pain away. I tried to prepare them for the emptiness that would follow the funeral…the guilt, the anger, the loneliness.

I know that our Nursing Sisters are compassionate and caring. I know that I would want to die in the Unit. I know the staff will light candles to shield me from the harsh fluorescent light…. I hope that Lorraine Msini will softly sing Amazing Grace as I end my journey on earth. I have truly learnt that death is not the enemy. Living is.

I no longer cry for those who are dying. I cry for the ones who are left behind. I cry for the emptiness I have seen in mothers eyes… the raw, undiluted pain… I know that when I see them in a few months’ time they would have learnt to mask that raw, undiluted pain and emptiness in their eyes.

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Tom Attwater Is Dying. His Daughter Might Die, Too. The Letter He Left For Her Is Unforgettable.


I found this on Len Carver’s Kindness Blog.  This is about a brave young man fighting to keep his daughter alive.  Please repost!  If you can please donate to his worthy cause.  Posted on February 12, 2014 by Kindnessblog Smith

Tom Attwater is dying of a brain tumor, but he isn’t worried about his cancer. Instead, he is trying to save his 5 year-old daughter from her own.

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Tom Attwater with daughter Kelli and wife Joely

He has vowed to raise approximately $820,200.00 for her cancer treatment, even if he wouldn’t be around to see her go through it.

Now Tom is almost half way to his fundraising target he is more adamant than ever to reach it. Tragically his deadline is short as his latest scans show his brain tumour is growing.

He says: “These days people make bucket lists, and the very top of mine – the one that matters most – is raising money to make sure Kelli gets the medical help she might need.

Tom attwater

“Some people have advised me to slow down and concentrate on enjoying the rest of my days. But how can I knowing Kelli’s bright life might be cut short?

“Fundraising is a lot of hard work, especially on days when I feel too poorly to get out of bed. But I honestly feel I can’t relax until I know Kelli can have the best chance of a long and full life. I’ve run out of chances, luck and time but have had a wonderful life. So if I drop dead tomorrow, I know I will have done my best for Kelli.”

Tom and Kelli Attwater

Kelli is only 5 years-old, but she has already beat the disease twice. She is likely to relapse and need treatment in the United States, so Tom is dedicated to leaving a legacy behind for her, as well as this touching letter. Read it below:

Darling Kelli,

I’m so sorry I will not get to see you grow up as I so want to. Please don’t blame people or the world for this. A lot of life is simply luck and mine is running out.

I wish I had the words to make you feel better. I wish I didn’t have cancer and you didn’t have to see me in pain as you often do now. I wish so many things were different but they are not.

Most dads and daughters have decades to chat around the kitchen table, their hands warmed by mugs of coffee, as the dad dishes out advice and their girls no doubt roll their eyes. We don’t have that time. I won’t be able to drop you off on your first day at big school, pick you up after your first date, hold you when your heart hurts or cheer when you graduate.

But while your old dad is still around I thought I’d try to give you some life advice in one go. I hope it gives you some comfort. I hope cancer never returns so that your life is long, fulfilled and happy.

School Everyone will say it’s vital to work hard at school. Hopefully you’ll always do your best. I did well at school but did it do me much good in life? Not really. School work IS important, but make sure you have fun too.

Boys At the moment you don’t make much distinction between girls and boys and see all children as friends. That’s typical of your sweet nature. But Kel, that will change as you get older. You might see them as stinky, pesky classmates in a few years’ time. But, probably at secondary school, you’ll realise they can be quite nice.

You’ll have boyfriends when you’re older – MUCH older hopefully! – and I won’t be here to grill them about their intentions. So here’s some advice from your old man. It’s very hard to describe how it feels to really be in love. You might remember seeing me and your mum laughing together and cuddling on the sofa, and once the love hearts and flowers fade that’s what real love looks like. Have fun finding it.

Always choose boys with gen­tlemanly values, manners and respect. Imag­ine them having tea and a chat with our family around our table and if you think they’ll fit in, you have found a decent young man.

Sadly, you will have your heart broken one day. It hurts like hell and will feel like the end of the world. But you will get over it. And even if a romance doesn’t work out, try to be kind. Boys have feelings too. Lastly, if you have a special boy pal who is always there for you when boyfriends come and go, don’t take him for granted. Don’t overlook him. He might really care for you.

Marriage I often dreamt about your wedding day and imagined filling up with tears as I walked you down the aisle before giving you away. I won’t be able to do that Kelli. Sorry sweetheart. But I will be looking over your shoulder on that day, proud and happy you have found a special someone to love you and care for you.

I wonder if you will play what you call “the family song” (which is really I’ll Be There by The Jackson 5). It meant so much to me and my brother and sister growing up, and I know it does to you too. I’ll be there on your wedding day in spirit.

Mummy You and your mum will argue at times, especially when you’re a teenager. Please remember she adores you and wants the best for you. Give Mummy a hug when she is feeling sad and help each other get through any horrible times when I am gone. When you’re a teenager you might think your friends are right and your mum is wrong. But she has to make hard decisions for you and, more than any friend you’ll ever have, has your interests at heart. Treat her well.

Family Nothing is more important than family and the values they give us. Nothing.

Friends Treat people as they treat you. Be nice to anyone who helps you, always. Bullying is horrible – never become one.

Christmas & birthdays On your first Christmas without me, I’d love if you and Mummy would light a candle and remember me for a few minutes. It would be great if you two did the monkey dance together. Jumping around shaking our bottoms always made us laugh. That’s something to make me smile from up above. I’d also love if you visit my parents on Boxing Day. They will be hurting too.

I’ve given Nanny Sue presents for all your birthdays. I wish I could be there to see you open them. Hopefully you will like everything as it’s hard to imagine you at 10, 15, 20. I wonder if you’ll still like One Direction. I wonder if they’ll still make you dance around the living room.

Career You were two when you told me you wanted to be a “princess astronaut” so you could wear nice dresses and find new planets. You might now realise that’s not possible. But so many things ARE possible for you, darling. Do what makes you happy and that you enjoy. If you do so, life suddenly becomes much, much easier.

You may need to start a few different careers to find the one you enjoy, but so be it. One life, one chance.

Manners Always remember your please and thank-yous. The reason Mummy and I drum manners into you is because they will help you throughout your life. Always be courteous, especially to elders. Never put a knife in your mouth. Remember to write thank-you letters for gifts of kindness as it is always nice to act with grace and gratitude. (And please note that poo jokes are only funny when you are five, you cheeky girl!)

Learn to drive Most dads teach their daughters to drive and usually fall out in the process. Make sure you learn how to drive as soon you can – it opens up the world for you. Also, make sure Mummy doesn’t teach you (just joking, Joely).

Travel abroad It’s a cliche to say travel broadens the mind, but it’s true. See as much of the world as you can. But never on a motorbike (too dangerous).

Be happy You never laugh at 50%: you always laugh at 100%. Your laugh takes over your whole body and is highly infectious. I hope you never lose that. There is no point in asking you not to be sad when I go. I know you will be, princess. And I wish I could be there to wrap my arms around you and snuggle you until you smile again. Remember the Eeyore teddy I bought you from a charity shop? You said you’d keep him safe and cuddle him when you miss me. That’s a great idea. You can feel sad and use it as a driving force throughout your life. Or you can just be sad. You know which one I hope you choose.

Be charitable Please give to charities. Charities have been good to you and I. You’ll probably always remember our trip to Disneyland. But I’ll never forget the sacrifices people made to pay for your healthcare if ever cancer returns. Elderly people sent prayer cards and £10 notes they couldn’t afford. Heads were shaved, miles were run, thousands were raised. All for you. It’s important to pay back. Doing good deeds uplifts the soul. Never forget there are people worse off than you who you can help.

Remember your life motto Always keep trying. You might remember that I taught you to say “giving up is for losers”. I failed a number of times in my life but never gave up. Kelli, never give up.

Believe in yourself In life, many people will say you cannot do things. You make up your mind. Can you? Do you want to? Big challenges involve risks so make smart choices. Those who told me I couldn’t do certain things didn’t want me to do them. If you want something, it is nearly always possible, so do your best. I’m sure there’s a hell of a lot you can achieve!

I know you will make me proud and do something great in my memory. I know you can do it – so let’s start now.

And finally… Thank you for being you, Kelli. Thank you for paying me the biggest compliment of all time by calling me Daddy. Having you as my daughter is the greatest honour of my life. Thank you for teaching me more about love and happiness than any other person.

Enjoy your life. Don’t rush through it. I will be waiting.

All my love, always, to you princess and to Mummy,

Daddy xxxxxxxxxxTom and Kelli AttwaterIf you would like to donate to help save Kelli’s young life, visit her Just Giving page. It’s not fair that Kelli and her mom will be losing Tom so soon… but it’s even worse to know that young Kelli has her own big battles to fight.

Source: Just Giving / Help Kelli

Tom and Kelli Attwater

Please share Tom’s letter with others. Help us spread the word and save Kelli.

Sources: Daily Mirror & ViralFury

One death, one funeral, one dying, one day….


Friday morning, as the first rays of the new day peeped through the clouds, a brave young mother breathed her last breath.  She was surrounded by her mother, her two daughters, her ex-husband and a friend…  Seconds earlier her mom was whispering words of love to her.  Telling her it is okay to go… Friday afternoon I attended the funeral of another brave young mother who had died at Stepping Stone.  She died with her mom and Hospice volunteers next to her bed.  Earlier we had sung for her, prayed for her… Her family could not bear to see her dying and abandoned her and her mom in her final days.  This brave young woman had a beautiful smile on her lips when the undertakers arrived to remove her cancer ravished body. At the funeral pink balloons were sent into the sky

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Friday evening I stood in the room of a father and husband who was dying.  The youngest son sitting slumped in a chair.  His eyes red and swollen.  At the foot end of the bed a stepson smelling of alcohol.  “Had a couple of beers tonight Pop.  At least four for you” he said. “He was a man’s man.  He came home drunk every night of his life.  He lived his life!  He provided well for my mom.  He worked and played hard.” he said with admiration in his voice… My thoughts went back to earlier that day when the dying man’s wife tried to hug him. “F…. off… F…. off” he told her.  His wife wept for him.  She stayed with him.  She will mourn for him.

Silent Grief – Child Loss Support


I am reblogging these beautiful words.  Beautiful?  Yes, this was articulated beautifully.  Grief is raw.  Grief is hard. Clara turns grief words into poetry.  But there is nothing poetic or beautiful about grief.  Grief is horrible.  
I await the new rays of sunrise… I hope that today I will feel comfort.
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There is something so hopeful about a sunrise. When we are in deep, inconsolable grief from child loss, often we can’t sleep. We worry, cry, feel isolated and so alone, and grow more anxious by the minute. Sometimes it helps to watch the dawn of a new day arrive — maybe, just maybe, this will be the day our heart feels some much needed comfort. Sunrises, rainbows, butterflies, puffy white clouds, clear blue skies, blooming flowers…….signs from heaven, some would say! And, that’s what every parent and family of child loss needs — some sort of comforting sign from heaven letting us know our child is safe! God bless every family grieving the loss of their precious child today with some much-needed comfort and hope!

In Memory of Vicky Bruce for my friend Tersia


“Hi my name is Shaun from Scotland.”

Shaun is an amazing man who lives in Scotland with his beautiful partner Dawn, two sons and two daughters.  Shaun suffers from Fibromyalgia.  Fibromyalgia robbed him from coaching soccer and his active life.  Shaun has suffered many losses but has grown in his pain to be an amazing blogger and friend.  In his own words ,”The pain took things and kept doing so. I decided to make the pain my friend and live and laugh.”

Shaun started following my blog on the 19th of January 2013.  How do I remember?  Shaun responded to my post https://tersiaburger.com/2013/01/25/vic-has-left-home-for-the-last-time/

I remember his words.  He said that he and his partner, Dawn,  sat and hugged for an hour crying for Vic…. Shaun reached out to me in the midst of my worse pain and never abandoned me.  Many people have grown tired of my tears and sorrow and moved on to other blogs.  Shawn has stayed.  He comments, consoles and encourages.

Shawn, Dawn and Dean (their son, made this beautiful picture and link in memory of Vic.

When I read his post tears just ran down my cheeks.  Tears missing my child that had such a profound effect on people all over the world mixed with tears of gratitude for friends who are not afraid to use my child’s name…  Thank you Shaun, Dawn and Dean for taking time out of your lives to remember and honour my precious child.

I cherish our friendship!

 

My First Message from Heaven


I have no doubt that my child is in Heaven.  Vic lived hell everyday of her life.  Maybe her journey on earth was a purifying process….I don’t know.  What I do know is that Vic’s life was a lesson to most people.

Nobody can suffer a lifetime of devastating pain, indignity, loss and then still go to hell…This was her hell.  It was a hell that she suffered and lived with dignity.  She never stopped smiling.  Often through her tears…but she smiled.  Vic lived every second that she breathed.

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I do believe that Vic is running free in Heaven.  Running for the first time in her life… free of pain and suffering!

A year ago, today, we had Vic’s memorial service.  It was incredibly sad and beautiful…it was also the day I received my first message from Heaven.

I RECEIVED MY SIGN!

ImageTuesday morning arrived.  It had been a very long weekend.  I battled with the eulogy and my broken heart.  Everybody kept looking at me to make sure I was okay…  Patting my hand and saying: “It is going to be okay!”

It is never going to be okay.  Nothing can erase my child’s suffering and death from my mind.  In time I suppose I will learn to live with the pain and longing, but it is NOT GOING TO BE FLIPPEN OKAY!!!!! EVER!!!

I have slept in Vic’s bed since her death to “demystify” her room.  I also feel close to her.  I can smell her in her pillow; I spray her perfume before I go to sleep.

After Vic passed and before the undertakers arrived I lay next to her lifeless little body. I spoke to her non-stop.

“Sweetie, If your soul is hovering in this room I want a clear sign from you that you are still with me…”

I woke early and prepared for the lousiest day of my life.  I started chewing “Rescue” tablets.  It was the only way I was going to get through the memorial service without making an absolute fool of myself.  The boys looked so handsome!  Their mom would have been very proud of her boys!

At the church the hearse was parked at the front door.  Vic was already inside the church.  A huge photo was on an easel, and at least a hundred candles were burning around the casket.  The flowers were beautiful.  Vic would have approved.

I sat in the pew with tears running down my face.  I could not believe that my baby girl was lying in that casket!  That I would never see her, never hold her again, never hear her voice again.  Sitting in church I could not remember her pain and suffering only my own.

The service was beautiful!  The minister spoke from his heart and shared his memories of a brave young woman with almost 200 people.  He said that not many people are ever prepared for death, but Vic was to such an extent that she had planned her entire memorial service.  He wiped a tear from his eyes where he spoke of Vic’s journey.

As instructed by Vic we sang “Amazing Grace” and “How great Art Thou”.  I managed to sing – not a pretty sound though!  My voice was all over!  Vic would have giggled and told me that I sound like my mom!

I did the eulogy with the two boys standing on either side of me.  At times my voice wavered and at times even I could hear how strong I sounded.

And then it was time to carry the coffin to the hearse for the FINAL part of Vic’s journey.  I could hear the boys quietly sobbing as we carried Vic on her final journey.  I felt my face contort with grief and tears.

The coffin was so light!  I remember thinking “I wonder if Vic is really in the coffin….”

We lay single roses on the coffin.  The two boys’ red roses and the rest of us pink….  Kari and Simone (Vic’s nieces) came up and stroked the coffin.  They sobbed uncontrollably.  I could hear people crying.

The minister said a final prayer, and it was time for Vic to leave.

The undertaker solemnly hugged me and closed the rear door of the hearse.  It opened…. He pushed the coffin into position and relocked the locking mechanism.  He closed the door again.  Once again the door closed and opened!

“Vic is here and she is telling us she is going no where!” I said

People laughed nervously….

The undertaker unlocked the lock and pushed the coffin into position again.  The undertaker locked the locking mechanism for the 3rd time.  He closed the door. This time it remained closed.  Vic had gotten her message through to me…I received my sign.

My precious child is still with me.

CHILD BORROWED


The circumstances of our children’s deaths could not have been different.  Both our daughters died cruel deaths.  Vic died due to arrogant doctor error and Len’s Klysta died at the hands of her husband.  Our pain is the same.  We have developed a wonderful cyber friendship and Len has been an amazing friend.

In Len’s own words: “Hello, welcome to my blog! I started a mother’s sorrow after filling a page on my original blog (myownheart.me) about my beautiful daughter Klysta. Within this blog are my heart, soul , tears and anguish of losing my daughter when she was 41. After being beat to near death , lingering in pain for three days, her “man” poisoned her. Her story is here in all these writings somewhere I am sorry that you must dig through all the other heart pourings but maybe something will resonate with your heart. Thank you for visiting. God Bless” 

Jan22

Klysta                                                Vic

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God loaned me a child
He sent her from heaven above
I knew in my heart
I would have my lifetime to love.
But one day God said to me.
My Child, my purpose, my plan
Your work here is through.
He held out His hand
To this child I believed to be mine
this child He let me borrow
And He took her home to my sorrow.
Now my heart is wrenched
my clothes are rent, my tears
they fall softly for loss of you
God holds you gently and has taken
your pain and sorrows of this earth away
while sadly here I must stay
I will always remember the love that we knew
And someday my journey too will be through
Until then my dear one I will pray
and be thankful each step of the way
for the love we shared each and every day.

http://amotherssorrow.wordpress.com/2014/01/22/child-borrowed/

Len, thank you for your continued love and support.  Your gentle words of understanding and advice have soothed my soul many a day.  Thinking of you dear Cyber Friend with love and tears.

Rest in Peace Angel Child


Yesterday the sun set on our tears and longing. This morning I lay awake watching the sun send it first rays through the silhouette of the oak tree in our garden.

“Rays of hope” I thought.

I lay there, my eyes still heavy with tears and sleep thinking how grateful I am that my child’s suffering is over…

Yesterday was a day filled with selfish sadness. All I could think of was how much I miss Vic; how empty my life is; how much pain we are in… For one day I “forgot” her terrible suffering. Her tears of pain and frustration. This morning I thought back to Vic vomiting pure, bright red blood, crying “Mommy I broke another vertebrae”.

This morning I remembered that Vic had absolutely no quality of life. I remembered my fear that her suffering would never end… I remembered my prayers, pleading with God to end Vic’s suffering.  Alberton-20120114-00781  Image (178)

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So, today I will allow peace back into my heart. I will do my best to be a good back-up mommy to the boys. I will try to live with my pain. And when sadness threatens to overwhelm me I will force my mind back to Vic’s words “I can’t do this anymore”. I will remember the indignity that she lived; her tears…

I will remember my baby girl’s laugh; her beautiful eyes; the rich texture of her hair. I will honour her pure heart, compassion and goodness.

I will celebrate the fact that Vic is now free of pain, indignity and loneliness. I will visualize Vic running free in Heaven.

Rest in Peace my Angel Child. You are ALWAYS     in my heart.

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