Friday, August 10, 2012


Did you know that there is a cow appreciation day at Chik Fil A?  
Well there is.  
If you dress up like a cow- you get a free meal.  
One of my best friends Tina is super crafty and encouraged me to come with her and Nea and all of their wonderful children.  
I was not so sure I could rig up a cow outfit in less than 24 hours- 3 days after I buried my daughter....but somehow I did-

do you like our herd?  
ha ha lol
it was really fun.....until...
well until it hit me...
someone was missing :(
In that moment..I was chewing my sandwich and I just started to cry.
All I had to do was look at Tina and Nea, and they knew.
....and they cried too.
I sniffled and snotted and I did not care- 
nothing is the same without her...
all our happy moments have sadness in the midst of them

We are so very proud of our Aidan.  He has earned a red belt now, and the only belt left is BLACK!  He has one more stripe to earn- a black stripe and that will take about 3 more months.  Then if he tests and gets his black stripe that means he is ready to go through a series of 6 months of evaluations and mentoring and more evaluations etc..before they will even consider him ready to test for his black belt.  It is exciting and we are so thrilled with Aidan's determination and very proud of the perseverance he has shown through out this last year to earn so many belts.
It is a therapy to him.

IT WAS SO HOT the night of the test,- there is NO a/c in the dojang and there were SO many kids testing- which made the test potentially long- but Master Cashatt did a superb job of moving quickly and efficiently through the testers.  We are so thankful that some of our family and friends came to support Aidan- I think we had the biggest group- lol


Everyone keeps asking how Aidan is.
His sister died. 
He watched her die.
His grandfather died.  
His grandmother died.
All in less than 4 months.

He is sad and mad and happy and quiet 
and loud and crazy and sane 
and just about everything in-between.
He does not want to talk about it with anyone, 
and feels bad inside when people bring it up.

We know you all mean well...
 but could you please stop asking.
Just pray for him
send blessings 
and love 
and encouragement his way
No words you or I could ever ever ever say 
will make him feel better 
or normal 
or eased right now...

The art therapist has still been coming to sit and talk with Aidan and do art and talk alone.  He has been painting and sketching, and doing mosaics and making a memory box.  He has been really taking his time to make some meaningful pieces..pieces that remind him of his sister...
This last month.... 
has been very hard and weird and we all feel like we are in the twilight zone.  
Someone is missing from our every day 
from our every minute.
Each of us is coping differently.  
Each morning for about three weeks, I crawled into Calli's bed 
and smelled her there, 
I cried 
and prayed 
and just sat quietly- 
soaking in the silence.
feeling her
seeing her
hearing her
This made no sense to Aidan, 
and made Mike cry
but I had to
it it is therapy to me
Now they sometimes join me....
Like the other night...
 it was thundering 
I was in her bed
and I was reading...
comforted in her covers
on her pillows
in the dark of twilight
Aidan came in 
and joined me
in silence

Mike will come in at times
and just sit with me
and then we cry
we cry a lot
 feeling every single raw emotion 
feeling every moment...
without her
I have been sketching and journaling a lot too..... I did a glass mosaic as well- it feels good to create and pour my heart and hands into something
 I have been busy planting the bushes that Calli herself picked out 
right before she died....
 a Tinkerbell will look wonderful in the spring

 a butterfly bush
wisteria and two bloomerang lilac bushes

I also planted a weeping River birch tree in memory of my dad
 right next to the weeping cherry that we had planted 7 years ago 
in memory of Mike's dad.

When I took Calli to the nursery, she wanted to plant a white dogwood tree- 
she remembered them for our time living in Perkasie.  
We had one in the back yard she used to climb.  
I never got the tree..

So, the other day...
I came home and there on my doorstep 
was a white dogwood tree from my best friends from high school
Thank you girls- it means so much 
So I will plant that in memory of Calli.
I am still looking for a "Snowball" tree as Mike's mom called it.  
Calli wanted to plant one in memory of Grandmom.
 I finally planted the rose bushes that were given to Calli :)

It is very therapeutic to get all hot and sweaty and dig 
and feel the earth in your hands and under your feet....
to feel the heat scorching your back and smell the smells of summer.

Mike and Aidan are different, which is really good...
but it is so hard not having Calli in this house
she balanced us out....
she was the voice of wisdom 
and reason 
and calm 
and love 
and strength.

I found this note a few days after she died....
it was in a prayer journal that someone gave her.  
She kissed it.  
She kissed me
She wuvs me 
I wuv you too my sweets!!!
 I loved it so much, that I framed it 
the other picture is of her on LOCH LOMON in Scotland 
I kiss her kiss every single day
 I also had an artist on etsy make it into a bracelet for me :) 

when no one is home....
I call her name out loud...
I call her, and wait for her answer...
and I think I hear her, the way she used to always answer me back...
but truly silence surrounds me...
and I melt
I beat at the silence 
and scream at the top of my lungs 
as loud as I can.
I wail and weep 
and somehow my broken heart...
finds a place there..
in the silence, 
in the screaming...
in the horrible ... lonely feeling I have inside 
 On August 4...
one month later...
I woke with a heavy heart...
I knew I had to go outside and be outside in the sunshine...
so I took my camera and my journal 
and started my therapy session with God and His creation...
 and a little butterfly flew by my head.......
and landed on the pavement...
and then it landed here ....amazing
 Calli's cosmos are all over the yard
 the birds plant the sunflowers every year
 my favorite
 God planted all of the Queen Anne's lace in my has never grown here before....the week Calli all bloomed

 the weed that I would not let my mom pick...I knew it would flower...and it did :)
 the lambs of Calli's favorite- magically appeared in my flower bed this year- I never planted it- how do you explain that?
 the squashes that come back every year on their own

 Aidan's tadpoles from Peace Valley are now frogs :) cute little buggers
 Look!  Even Calli's cosmos grew IN the tadpole terrarium...amazing


 I had to go for a drive...
I knew where I was going..
had not been there since July 10...
on my way, I saw the most beautiful field of Queen Anne's Lace
 I stopped and soaked in the sweet smell
picked as many as I could manage....
and went my way
As I was driving, I could see purple and yellow from far away 
as I came upon another field I knew I must stop.... 
another field full of all thistles and mustard ....

 the last field came into view.....

 much better now......mommy fixed it for you my sweets....

 just as I started to rain
 heaven was weeping with me....
 I love the rain.....

 the grave right behind her...
the one with the butterfly...
the butterfly she put there on March 6... 
is Mike's mom and dad's grave.
His mom's still covered in dirt...
Calli's earthly body is buried at their feet.
That day, I sat and I cried, and I talked to God 
and I talked to Calli 
and I tried with my human brain to understand what I can't
So, I wept in the rain.
As Heaven cried on me...
I wrote and drew in my journal, 
As I looked at the precious wildflowers, 
those weeds that lay on her grave...
I never wanted them to wither or die....
I didn't want dirt to be there
I wanted the flowers to live forever there...
and I asked God to let these seeds take root.  

so often we think weeds need to be destroyed 
and pulled out right away...
we think they are just weeds...
but if we wait...
they might just turn into beautiful flowers....
I asked God to turn all my weeds into wildflowers.....


  1. What a beautiful post…thank you for continuing to share Calli with us.
    I love how you can see God in His creation. How He’s always speaking and comforting us in the most amazing ways. The butterfly pictures made me gasp…then weep. I ask myself how do I miss someone I never meet…it’s because you make her alive to all of us and we have all fallen in love with Calli. :)

  2. My words can not express how beautiful this piece is.
    I am in a shell, so it is with joy that I see your life/poetry/blooms/therapy. xoxoxo

  3. You don't cry alone. I gotta stop reading these blogs on Monday mornings at work. All these tears are not good for business. Love you little sis. You hang in there. You are a survivor. I'm so sorry for your heart-aches & pain. Breaks my heart that my little sister and her precious family have to go thru so much suffering. It will be a glourious day when you are all reunited with Calli and all our other loved ones that have passed on before us. God will sustain you and will help you find that new normal in the years to come. Calli would want that for you too. Words really do no justice. Love you, Jules.

  4. You are beautifully adorned in God's loving grace and mercy. Continue to walk, my friend. The journey is long, and we will be tired in the end, but OH! When we see the Son! And, next to him, OUR DAUGHTERS! We will all be perfect together. That day, the day HE comes....and, I know He will come!

  5. Praying for you all. That your sadness will not overwhelm you....thank you for sharing.


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