Monday, September 2, 2013

Labor Day

Hi Everyone,

I hope you are all having a great Labor Day. Sorry to say, but this past week has been the hardest for me yet. Darnit, I thought I was supposed to get better, not worse. I am feeling good today so I will forget the past week and forge ahead. I know, I know...One day at a time. This is just exhausting and I can't wait for the day when I can think about Wo with a smile on my face!

Mark was off Sunday and is off today and tomorrow as well. He is so excited to have that many days off in a row. Poor guy hasn't had a vacation since 2011 when we went to Myrtle Beach. The last two years, his vacation was taken as days off when we went to Michigan with Lauren. It is raining right now, but we are hoping to go swimming once the sun comes back out. I made a big breakfast this morning and tried a new recipe called Baked Praline French Toast. It was about 9 million calories worth of goodness.

In honor of Labor Day, Mark and I decided to do a little labor of our own. There is a big monument back by Lauren's grave that always looked terrible. It is dedicated to someone that must have donated money to keep the cemetery looking nice. Hmmmm on that one. The weeds were so grown up and the bushes were all raggy looking. This bothers me every day when we go to visit Wo because we drive in that way and have to look at it, so we decided to take matters into our own hands. Mark loaded up the Explorer with tools, a blower, and tarps and we went to tackle this mess. I want Wo's body to be in a nice place, and it is except for that eyesore. It was crabgrass city and we ripped it all out and trimmed the bushes. Mark was laughing and saying the cemetery workers are probably scheduled to clean it up tomorrow and will have a party when they see it was already done. I don't know whose responsibility it is to keep it nice, but I guess we have kind of adopted it. Here are some before and after pics.

The disaster we looked at every day when going to see Wo.

Mark hard at work and you can see Lauren's grave in the upper left corner. The tiny red dot is flowers at her grave.

Much better.

I feel like we did our good deed for the day!! Feels great.

Mark and I sitting in the comfort of our air conditioned SUV after some hard work.

I have joined a support group online for parents who have lost children. I'm not sure yet if it is right for me or not. It has over 5,000 members and everyone's stories are so heart wrenching. While the members are so friendly and welcoming, I don't know if this will make me sadder hearing about everyone else. I still belong to my Cholangiocarcinoma website, but don't know if I fit in there either. Most people on there are fighting for their lives and I'm not sure if they want to hear from a Mom that had a child die due to this cancer. Not too uplifting for them. I'm still searching for my purpose and what I am supposed to do. I know I will figure out what that is when it hits me on the head!!

Well, as usual I will leave you with a memory of Lauren.

Poor little punkin was even beautiful without her hair. She endured such hardship, but always had a smile.

Have a nice holiday everyone and remember to tell those close to you that you love them every day!!
Until next time...



  1. You and Mark will be blessed for the amazing work you did at the cemetery! It looks great! Always praying for you and always here for you! You and Mark look amazing considering all you have had to endure! Hugs, love, and blessings! Marybeth Swift

  2. Pam, I love reading your blogs. I lost my daddy on 4/7/2013 and have been sad ever since. I have good days, bad days and just plain horrible days! Little things set me off. I try so hard not to be sad because I know my dad would not want that and I certainly would not want my 2 girls to be this grief-stricken when I pass. But I can't help it. Your blogs are inspiring. I read them and then I remember things about my dad and I feel some happiness. So, thank you! Also, you and your husband are wonderful people for cleaning up that monument. It looks incredible. Hugs to you!!

    1. Nice to meet you, Tina. Thanks for taking the time to send me a message. I am very sorry to hear about your Dad. Did he have CC? I'm happy my blogs make you think about your Dad in a good way. The monument clean-up was a totally selfish act on our part. We wanted the cemetery to look nice for our Wo. So it didn't even feel like work when we did it. Give your two girls hugs and tell them you love them every chance you get!! Take care.


  3. Hi Pam,
    You picked a peaceful spot for Lauren. I wish she was still with you, but I think heaven had other plans for sweet Wo. You and Mark did a wonderful job reworking the monument. It looks much improved and I’m sure others who visit will be uplifted! I got a kick out of Mark sporting his orange sweat band. My husband swiped one of my bandannas and he looks like a middle age hippy wearing it.
    I can relate to what you’re saying about not being sure where you fit anymore. I decided to put more fun activities in my life since for so long the focus was doctors and hospitals. We are currently taking social dance lessons. At the time I signed up it seemed like a good idea, but oh my am I ever horrid! Finding a good fit is trial and error. I think you will know pretty quickly if something is going to click for you and if it doesn’t move on.
    I believe you did everything humanly possible to heal Lauren. Everything happened so quickly and you still have a lot to process. Time brings a certain perspective and coming to terms with everything doesn’t follow a straight path. I don’t have the answers, but I sympathize with what you are going through.
    Take care and I’m going to light a candle to honor Wo tonight.
    Cathy & Heather

  4. Hi Cathy and Heather,
    It's nice to hear from you. I hope you are both doing well. I am used to Mark and the sweatband. He wears one every time he does yard work and thinks they are great. He is a big sweater and it helps from getting sweat in his eyes. Haha. I am sure I will get into more activities as time goes by. Right now I am just trying to get through the day. I like to do crafts so I am looking at ornaments for Christmas to make for family. I also want to get a part time job in the future, but I am waiting for the right one to come along. The last job I had was at a candy factory and I felt like Lucille Ball every day. That was the most awful job ever!! I hope we did everything possible to help Lauren. Sometimes I wonder if she would still be here had she not had the surgery, but she still had CC. She wanted the surgery, so she did what she wanted. I miss her so much and just wish I could see her and talk to her. Thank you for caring and how sweet of you to light a candle for Wo. Love to you both.