Sunday, July 22, 2012

no where to be found

It is impossible, 
I think, 
for me to write a short blog.
I mean... really impossible, 
so please bear with me.

All of the thoughts in my brain and in my heart and in my soul....
they interweave…into this weird and chaotic tapestry of.....
colors and emotions and hard to describe and put on paper...rather on screen....
I am not to share them all with you...
but how do I separate them?  
how do I pick one thought, or thing to talk about?
I have been journaling a lot lately, 
I have not done that in a long time.

Calli inspired me to start again. 

The last few weeks...
wow it has been weeks...
18 days to be exact....
The last few weeks, I have been reading her journals.

She did not complain once about her lot-
not once- 
not even in her hidden journals.
I have read of dreams, a lot of them, 
real dreams the Lord gave her..
in them she was getting married, 
over and over and over again.....
I read of hopes....and normal stuff, 
like her first kiss and who she would want it with...
and hopes to travel the world...
and dig for lost treasures...
I read of spirit dreams....
to reach the lost with a message of HOPE....
to get married someday, 
and have the feeling of a baby growing in her belly.

That got me thinking....
 of when she grew beneath my heart...
in my belly.  
I got pregnant when I was 18.  
I was not married.
I was in love with a young man...
a hero to me...
I fell in love with his family, 
his gentle father, and wise mother....
I fell in love with this child in my womb...
a part of him, them, a part of me and mine.

As I sat on the toilet that September morning,
 and read the results of that dipstick, 
I cried with JOY...utter amazement, and HOPE.  
In that moment...
there was no fear, or tears of disappointment, 
there was not regrets or worry...
Only pure JOY and LOVE and HOPE filled my heart 
for this itty bitty baby in my belly.  
In that moment, I wrote her a letter 
and told her how happy I was that she came into my life...
how I would never ever regret having her, 
or choosing LIFE for her.

Pregnancy was so wonderful, 
and so physically painful at the same time.
I was so sick those first few months, and ended up getting so ill, that I needed to be hospitalized.  
A doctor told me that I would lose the baby, 
if I kept working where I was working...
so i quit my job..for her.

Mike came to each and every single appointment with me.  
The first time we heard her heart beating...
oh those emotions, those feelings of belonging...
of oneness...
there is no way to describe them.  
The first time we saw her little body on the sonogram 
and heard she was a girl....our own little girl, 
to love and cherish....was so deep

When it was time for her to come, she was so late, and I was waiting and waiting and waiting for the birthing process to start- 
no inductions back then....and I am glad- 
Because Calli never did anything  
unless it was on her own terms anyway...
 unexpectedly, a trickle and gush came down my leg...
she was coming!  

Back then we used pagers- 
and Mike did not answer his pager, 
so my sis-in-law Lori drove me to the hospital, 
and I wondered if Mike would make it at all...
we actually passed him on the way to the hospital- 
going the wrong way on Rt. 309
He finally made it, and tried to help, 
but couldn't do much at all but watch :)
and then my Aunt Alison came with her girls 
to encourage me...
to tell me to keep moving, keep walking...
keep going on...
it would happen soon and make it easier, if I just keep walking.  

I did not want to hear it at the time- 
IT was painful.  
So utterly painful, 
I thought I would die.  
But she was right.  
Walking, moving...opened up my womb.  
I took no drugs, 
I wanted to feel every pain, 
every contraction, 
every movement 
and push and pull of her life 
emerging into mine!  
I did not scream or howl, 
I focused every single ounce of energy 
into pushing my little girl out and into my life.

What a glorious and horrible moment at the same time!  
Oh my!  She came out in only 15 minutes of pushing, 
and she emerged screaming and letting her voice be heard....
she was different from the very beginning...
 I was going to raise her differently than I was raised...
I yearned to give her a voice, 
to give her HOPE and to let her, 
unhindered, to let her use her voice to teach me 
and the rest of the world.....

These last few weeks have been a like a birthing process of sorts. 
With birth there is sickness, and pain, 
and advice you don't want to hear, 
and there is a hope for new life 
and there is a hurt that must come if you want that life
and sometimes you feel as if you would die....

there is a process, a cycle, much the same as birth..
but it is a death process...
that is not a technical term, or from some book....
it is just my term.

There are stages in death and grieving, 
just like there are trimesters in pregnancy and birthing.
Each one, for each parent, each mother, each child is different.
I just have to keep walking through it....

I found your drawer of lip glosses, and I cried.....
you are everywhere I look, in everything in this house...
In the pictures on the walls, in my mind...
In your blanket that I smell each night....
I the shirt you died in that I cannot bear to wash....
so I just tucked it away in one of your special boxes...
you are in your books on the shelf, 
maybe I will read them all this year...but there are so many
you are in the smells in the air, 
the clouds you love,
the sunshine
the rain,
the sweet grass and flowers
I use your body wash and shampoo just to smell you
you are in the lotions....and perfumes that you did not want me to use...
but I cannot bear not to smell them, to smell you...
you are in the leaves that rustle and dance in the wind
you are in the chimes on the porch
you are in all the butterflies and birds 
that flitter and talk and sing to me...
you are in the dew.. fresh on the morning grass, wetting my feet....
letting me know it is a another day I have to get through 
without you
you are in the heart rock on the trail that I found...
I see you in your bed where poor Butchy relentlessly looks for you...never ceasing
I see you in Shaya......who lets me pet her... now that you are gone
I see you when I lay in your bed each morning...
where I can feel you 
and smell you, 
I see you suffering...and smiling, 
and I feel you curling my hair in your fingers...
 like you always would do to comfort yourself...
did you know you were comforting me? 
I see you laying there...stroking my head and 
telling me it is gonna be ok......
you are in the music on my phone
in the car
in the wash
in the closet
in the letters in my drawer
in the Queen Anne's lace along the road- 
one of your favorites sweets...and it is everywhere I look...
I see you in the thistle and I think of Scotland....
of pain...of joy
I cannot bear to look at your friends
or to be around them anymore.....
you are their eyes, in their hugs, 
in their youthfulness and purity and vigor
You are everywhere....

but no where to be found

I felt very lost this week
I felt very angry 
and sad 
and betrayed 
and utterly utterly empty.
I don't understand everything that happens in this world...
I don't understand heaven completely either...
I ask God to help me get through
I know I will never know fully....
until my ending
Will it be as beautiful as Calli's?
Will I smell as sweet as she did
at her end?

all my questions and wondering and wandering....
 make me just want to it all to be over 
and for the Lord to come quickly and take me there 
and see Him and ask Him all my stupid questions.
And see my Calli....

People try and help and ya know what?  
NOTHING helps.  
I feel bad for people trying to encourage us with songs and scriptures and their own words trying to explain it all away...
 I kind of had a melt down when someone tried in their futility to help explain and defend God's word...why this happens....
but none of it makes sense....
at all...
and I said it was all "crap..."

In that moment of despair,
I really felt that way.

But the truth is.....
we don't know crap.  
We only know a little...
very little-
in part
a section
not the whole...
that is what the Bible says.

We will only know fully, completely and wholly...
 if and when we get to Heaven....
You cannot please God without faith
The just live by faith 
So we are to blindly and openly allow this thing to gut us.... 
to break us into bitty pieces
and lay ourselves wide open to be eaten by the vultures 
and be burnt ...and trust....
trust that God 
that God will put the pieces all together in the end.
Yes Lord.
I was real and honest and melted under the inferno ...
burning away my insides 
I was angry...
at God..I am not sure...
I don't even know- 
maybe it will work out of me by the end of this entry...

I am a child...
 a child gets angry with their parents sometimes...
when they don't understand things..
so I guess I am angry at the situation...
I would not be normal if I wasn't.  
My baby is gone.
Last night, while looking at the sky full of stars...
a little friend asked me if Calli lived on a star...
I don't know.
I don't even know where heaven is

As Christians, we grieve differently...
with a meet again
but we still grieve.
We still grieve.

Jesus grieved.
When Jesus' friend Lazarus was sick- 
to the point of death, 
Mary and Martha- Lazarus' sisters sent for Jesus, their dear friend to come and heal him quickly, but Jesus said,
"Lazarus's sickness will not end in death.
No, it happened for the glory of God, so that the Son of God will receive glory from this."
 So Jesus stayed where He was, 
and did not rush there to heal Lazarus.
  This was his close friend....
Mary and Martha were precious to Him.
And he did not go.

And Lazarus died.

Mary and Martha were grieving so much over the loss of their brother, 
when Jesus finally came to town..

Martha came to him right away, 
as soon as she knew he was in town...
she ran to him crying and grieving, and said,
 "If you were here, my brother would not have died..."  
She was angry with Him, upset, maybe a little bit disappointed in her friend- who told her- 
"This sickness is not unto death."  
Even so, after that, she said in her desperation...
"Even so Lord, I KNOW whatever you ask of your Father in Heaven, He will give to You."  

So what was she saying....
she still believed in Him, as the Son of God....
that He could ask anything and receive it....
maybe she was mad ....
knowing He could have asked for healing for Lazarus 
and did not .....and that He was not even there... 
maybe she was torn in two pieces, 
one in anger that Jesus was not there to keep from dying...
and one half of her knew the Love and depth and awesomeness and power of God...
Part of me thinks she felt rejected...
but still she worshipped God,
and told Him he could do anything.

Then there was Mary.  
She stayed in the house when He came. 
She did not go running to Jesus when he came....
He had to call for her...then she went to Him
And she fell at his feet,
and I know she was crying and grieving and said, 
" Lord if you were here, my brother would not be dead!"
She was angry, hurt, upset, rejected.
She did not reply with words like Martha did.
Just one stinging remark.
And then she wept and wailed 
and all the others wailed with her and 
“When Jesus saw her weeping, and saw the others wailing with her, a deep sadness and anger welled up within Him, and he was deeply troubled and moved.”
Then, "Jesus wept."  

Shortest verse in the Bible- 

Why did He weep?  
and HE WEPT. 
The Bible goes on to say that he was "deeply moved" in His spirit- it says it more than once.

Many people have their theories...their interpretations...
some will tell you  that Jesus wept, because He was sad that they did not believe in Him enough....
some say it was because of their unbelief...
some because He was sad for Mary and Martha to be mad at Him, some because He was sad his friend died. 
Why did Jesus weep? 

v. wept (w pt), weep•ing, weeps
1. To shed (tears) as an expression of emotion: 
2. To express grief or anguish for; lament: 
3. To bring to a specified condition by weeping: 
4. To exude or let fall drops of liquid 
1. To express emotion, such as grief or sadness, by shedding tears. 
2. To mourn or grieve: 
3. To emit or run with drops of liquid: 

Why did Jesus weep?

Mary and Martha had a special place in His heart
the Bible says that he loved them deeply.  
I think, that If I loved someone deeply, 
and they come to me upset and grieving and crying, 
saying I let them down..
I lied...
I said things I shouldn't.....
I was not there for them...
I would cry too.  
I would be upset with myself, 
I would be grieved for them.

Don't get me wrong, 
I am NOT saying that Jesus lied, 
or that He said something he should not have, 
or that He let them down...
but ....

in their eyes...
He did.

I think this made Him sad.
John says that He groaned in the spirit and was greatly troubled, and then he wept again.
But why?
He was God.
He knew He would raise Lazarus from the dead later on....
so why grieve?  
Why be moved to weep?
I think partly, because Lazarus was dead...but I think he was grieving.... not for Himself, or his own loss, 
because He knew He would bring him back...
but it was deeper.....  
he was grieving for His beloved friends...his daughters...
for their sorrow and suffering, 
and sadness and for their anger...
that they thought He let them down.  
He groaned and grieved in the spirit.

Sometimes, when I am aching inside 
and praying and groaning in the spirit, 
it is not for myself, 
or for my own problems, 
but for the aches and pains of others...

a groan of God, 
an intercession for the hearts and hurts of others.

At Calli's service...
a deep groaning and pain came forth from my spirit, 
a groaning of God- too deep for my own words
it came in another language
one that I did not know or even understand
as much as I tried to quiet it and hold it back...
I could not contain it....
The waves of pain and grief and sorrow flooded me...
but they were not my own pains 
or even my own tears...
they were not for Calli
They were for you.
God was calling to you, 
and you were angry and sad and mad, 
just like Mary, but you did not come to Him.
You did not forgive others.
You did not let it all go
He is Abba, Father, Friend, Saviour.....

At the death of Lazarus, his own beloved friend.....
He was groaning and crying an intercessory groan of God 
for His beloved friends and children.
Remember He was God...
but He was also a man.
A man with emotions and pains and hurts 
and much sufferings and groanings.
He was sad for his friends.

He weeps with those who weep

We have had several people, friends, family.... 
tell us that Calli's sickness, was not going to be unto death...
just like Lazarus, and that she would live!  
That there would be no physical death for her.
I was angry at them this week.  
The people who told me it was not God's will for Calli to die.
I told me that.
And the questions come again and again...
But we all die don't we?
Does God not number our days?
He is the provider of life and he not?
I am not going to pretend that I know the answers..
I don't know anything right now.

I guess I was also angry at Jesus, 
like Mary, like Martha.....
I am sorry Lord...
but I felt let down.
I prayed and sang to You 
for almost an hour after she took her last breath... 
I thanked you that she was alive and I told her to get up, 
to come take a bike ride with me...
I told her to wake up.....
Even as they threw the dirt on her grave, 
I waited to hear her knocking on the lid of the casket 
for us to let her out....
I believed with all my heart, strength, soul and mind 
that she would live.
I never gave up HOPE, even unto the end.
It was not my flesh or natural self believing, 
It was the God-faith that You gave me, 
that sustained me for over a year....
I believed that even a shadow of one of the little children 
there could have healed her....

So, yes, Lord, 
Jesus, my Friend, my Father....
I was angry at you.
I am sorry.
So, I give you permission right now....
to take my disappointment ...
my tears...
my confusion...
my sorrow....
and fill me with Joy once again......

This story... really spoke so much to me.  
I am so affected by the Bible, 
and learn so much from the stories...this story in particular.  
Honestly, I have been crying a lot and...
I wanted to know again, why Jesus wept.  
I don't need to read a concordance or a study guide...
I just need to sit and clear my mind, 
and meditate and read it and ask...
yes ask
for clarity 
and believe every word of it...
even if it might not make all that much sense to me...
and there are many unanswered questions 
I will always have about it.....
but that is where Faith must come in and take over my doubt, 
and my human desires to know why....
I have to believe that I am as beloved as Mary and Martha, 

and as Beloved Calli
and I just have to let go and 
learn from Calli, 
my hero, 
my precious sweet child
she is an example of running the race that was set before her...
She never faultered, or looked back,
she embraced this life, 
this lot thrown at her...
She finished well
She is a true hero of the Faith
she was ripped open and torn apart
and gutted and burnt, and poisoned
she withered away physically, 
and watched herself while fully aware...
day by day
lose all functions and feeling
of her toes 
then her legs 
then her bowels 
and her bladder 
and never complained
and then it was her fingers
and then her hands
and her arms that would not move 
and finally in her last days she lost her sight, 
her ability to eat, communicate
and she never once complained or freaked out
she could not see....
but she had perfect sight
and she never lost her faith
never lost HOPE
never lost trust
that she would LIVE....

John 11: 25 Jesus said to her(Martha), 
I am the resurrection and the life. 
He who believes in Me, 
though he may die, 
he shall live. 
26 And whoever lives 
and believes in Me 
shall never die. 
Do you believe this?”

I believe it.
Calli is alive

She is alive
God is not a liar.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


Here is a beautiful poem that was written for Calli, by her friend Kalie Seizmore. We were blessed to read it the day after she went home....we cried, knowing that this is just what Calli would be saying to us.


What does courage look like to you?
Do you think of the colors red, white, and blue?
Do you think of someone who stood up for the weak?
Someone who never gives up until they find what they seek?
All of these things are nice that’s true,
 but I think of something different than you.
I think of a young girl whose life went into a whirl
Why, you ask does she come to mind?
A girl whose life was in a bind?
Because she was stronger and braver than most
even though her body would soon become a host
A host of a terrible thing
 something that makes you not want to sing
Cancer I’ve been told has no cure
unfortunately the doctors were sure
She had the courage of a warrior and the strength of a solider.
That is how you would describe her
She fought for over a year, over many a shed tear
To be free from cancer was her plea
to run and dance again and just to be
On the fourth of July at age 15
she met her Lord and King
All I can do is cry as I wonder why?
But if she was here today I know that she would say:
“It was a long hard fight, it was a long last night
It was the pain and the sorrow
 and the hope for a tomorrow
You loved, you cared, everything you had you shared
You gave, and you hoped
I know you tried and did your best to cope
Now that I’m gone I want you all to carry on
I want you to laugh like you used to
and smile till it hurts you
Now I can see, it’s just the way He said it would be
With the saints, the angles,
Jesus, and me
Our prayer didn’t turn out wrong
now I get to join in with the angles song
In the chorus up above the chorus of love
With the saints, the angels, Jesus, and me
Wrapped in the arms of Jesus is where I wanted to be,
I heard Him say ‘this ones with Me’
I wish that you could smell these flowers
and marvel in His powers
If you could see the pearly gates
and all of the treasure that awaits
You would be happy for me no tears would we see
Here with the saints, the angels, Jesus, and me
I know its hard living in the world of darkness;
just wait till you see this kingdom of brightness
This is truly where we belong ;
singing in with the angels song
When you reach the kingdom too,
know that I will be waiting for you
With the saints, the angles, Jesus, and me.”
That is what I believe my dear friend would say.
I don’t think she would have it any other way
Now do you see why I think of her?
Do you understand madam or sir?
She was and will always be
a wonderful memory living in me.
See you soon.

This song was written by a guy that lost his little girl.  Calli was so drawn to it, from the first time that she heard it, she played it over and over again and said, "Mom, I don't know why, but I am so drawn to this song."  Well, now we know, she wants us to hear the message in it.


She wants us to sing a song of HOPE.  Her hope was not just to be healed.  Someone said to me, "So much for, "Pray Believe and Dare to Hope..."  WHAT?  No, no, we continue to pray, believe and dare to HOPE that we will see Jesus and Calli again.  her Hope, our HOPE was greater than just being healed from a disease, her hope was higher, and LIVING.  We have a LIVING HOPE in Jesus.  No prayer was wasted, no breath of hope said in agony and tears for her healing was wasted...Hope is not lost!

She is singing

Blessing and Honor and glory and power

forever and ever

to her God

The God of HOPE

Calli now knows more than we do 

she knows in FULL, we only know in part.

She is experiencing an orientation of divine exchange....of HEAVEN

oh the sights and wonders and saints she is meeting.  

I know she is worshiping the Lord, and asking so many questions...

not just to Him but to others.  

How glorious!

How can I keep from singing?  

How can I keep silent?  

God is still good, all of the time.

His grace is sufficient for me.  

The last words Calli said were, "I just want to go home."  

Before she went home, she saw things, she kept saying that our house was so big, that the rooms were huge, she kept seeing "Scotland" outside, and said our yard was so beautiful..she was seeing Heaven.

Reading through her Bible, she has so may verses outlined, underlined and highlighted...

she loved God's word.  

I am reading through psalms in her is comforting me and blessing me

She was just a traveler here, she truly knew and thought of Heaven as her home.

She saw bits and pieces the last week before she went there.  

She told me of what she was seeing.....

Oh how marvelous, Oh how wonderful- 

Can you just imagine the glee and sparkle in her turquoise blue eyes as she beholds the beauty of Heaven?

Earth is a garbage dump compared to there.

A year ago, Calli and I we were driving to Philly for radiation and Chemo, we were alone and she said.. 

"Mom, I don't know why people are afraid to die, I am not scared or afraid to die.  I can't wait to get to Heaven!  I get to see Jesus!  I have so many questions to ask Him....... and Grandpop, and Nana Minnie... Misty and Boots and  oh mom!  I get to meet Keith Green, and King David, and Esther and Ruth, and Paul, Elijah!  Oh mom, Laura Ingalls Wilder is there!  Do you think Anne Frank is in Heaven?  I have so many questions to ask these people.  But I am kinda sad, because I wish that Anne of Green Gables was a real person, and all the Sacketts that Louis Lamore wrote about were real people and would be there to meet me....."

I was delighted to hear this from my precious child.

No fear.

Only Excitement, pure joy and eager anticipation

Little did she know, she would also be greeted by her Grandmom and my dad....

Calli loved this song by Keith Green- a person who she could not wait to meet when she Got to heaven.

Oh I can see her now,  

making perfect music to the Lord, 

WITH the Lord, 

and playing piano right next Keith Green, 

and ringing bells and no one will mess up the timing!!!  

It is perfect JOY!

Oh Calli, my precious, 

I KNOW where you are, 

you are home 

and filled with such JOY 

and You are PERFECT 

and you ARE NOT an Angel- 

YOU ARE higher than the ANGELS!  


HIS Beloved Bride- 

My sweets, enjoy your wedding day!

What a feast!

Daddy said that you could eat whatever you wanted 

And you'll never get full, 

he said you would love that!

You are living

and running

and dancing

and singing

and riding the most glorious horses

and swimming in the deepest clearest waters

and you'll never have to come up to get your breath!

You are soaring on Eagle's wings

With all the birds and butterflies


Oh my "Towy Mae"

I can't wait to see you again

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Independence Day

Callahan Mae Derstine
was set free from her earthly body
today, at 8:20 pm
She received Liberty on Independence Day.