Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Thanksgiving was one of our favorite holidays. Adrienne always said she'd learn to cook and help. She never did but she told me what she wanted to eat and I cooked it, and I loved it. The holiday just isn't the same any more. Curt and I had planned to go to southern California to see Daniel but things didn't work out (long story, his, not ours) so we're staying home this year. We'll go out for dinner, just the two of us. Caesar isn't doing well now either and we don't expect he'll be with us too much longer so it's good to be close to home, but you never know, the way he continues to surprise us.

Adrienne's BFF from CMC, Sara, is doing the LA Marathon with Team in Training in her honor. If you'd like to donate, please go to http://pages.teamintraining.org/los/la12/sararoberson. I know she'd love to hear from you and I know Adrienne is so proud of her for doing this.

Saturday, October 01, 2011

2 years today

Dearest Adrienne, It's been two years since you took your last breath. It was the worst day of my life and I've had many bad days since, but I'm so proud and honored to have had you in my life for 22 years. I hope that you are happy, peaceful, and pain free. I'll always love you, more than even I can imagine. Love, Mom

Monday, June 06, 2011

Back Home

Curt and I returned from our trip last week. It was wonderful (of course) but the jet lag really knocked us out. We returned to find a package with a book that Adrienne worked on at CMC, and it was dedicated to her. I knew it was coming but I was happy to receive it and to hear from her prof. CMC also created a plaque in her honor and placed it in the reading room that she frequented there. She loved being at CMC and I'm glad that she was able to have that.

I start class again tonight with a 5 week, 3 night a week class, very quick and intense. Then I start work on my thesis/dissertation. I've decided to do my research into cyberbullying because I believe that this is a real and important health issue that needs attention and real-world solutions. We'll see where this takes me.

I want to offer a shout and support to my "moms," women like me with a child fighting Hodgkin's or who have lost a child to this disease. I wish we didn't have this little club but I'm glad that we can support and help each other. I love you all.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Healing and coping, they really do mean different things.

People ask me how I'm doing, if things are better, and I realized that I'm coping better but healing is a whole other story.

Healing and coping, they really do mean different things.

We usually heal from a physical wound, but when we do, there is usually a scar that we have for all of our lives.

Coping is a mechanism that our brains use to overcome emotional pain, a hurt that wounds our hearts. We don't see it, but it is there revisiting us at moments we don't expect and causing us to spiral back down into pain.

Physical healing, for example, for a bone break, means that the two ends are reattached firmly back together, sometimes even stronger than it was before.

Coping is something that has to be done over and over again. We get better at it, but we can also backslide into grief, reassessing our loss and opening the wound in our hearts to re-injure ourselves and feeling that pain once again. It is an injury that we will feel for all of our lives.

But it can also make us stronger too.

We can learn from this pain, healing our hearts much like physical healing takes place. We can use the pain to help others, and in so doing, help ourselves. It is coping, but it is also healing. So much of our loss and pain manifests itself in physical symptoms, and we need to recover from those. We can't still be prostrate in bed for years after the death of our child (although we'd like to be). We can't ignore the daily tasks of taking care of other children, of providing clothing and shelter for them and ourselves, of moving forward in this world.

We have to pick ourselves up and take those first steps towards recovery. It won't happen steadily like a bone break, but it will happen.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Adrienne Would be Proud

I was accepted in the Educational Psychology masters program at UNLV last week. I guess they decided to ignore my GRE quantitative score, which was really low. I realized that I could only raise my score by taking an algebra/geometry class so I'm happy I don't have to do that. I can apply to the PhD program next year and work on both degrees at the same time. My hope is to work on a master's thesis that can evolve in a PhD dissertation. This is all going to take awhile but I'm enjoying school in the meantime. It's challenging but not too hard.

We went to LA and Santa Barbara a couple of weeks ago. It was nice to see Daniel and he asked me to visit more often. It sure is nice when your 22 year old son wants to see his mom.

Caesar is turning into an old man day by day, poor thing. We thought he was having more back trouble but now it seems he's deaf. He can hear a few high pitched sounds but that's about it. Now I can stop calling his name when I'm looking for him, wondering why he just lays there. He's still happy, excited for his now short walks and eating normally (that dog loves his food). The little ones are oblivious and are just happy when he plays with them.

I'm going to be 50 in July, so as a present to myself, we're taking a trip to Italy at the end of May between spring semester and summer term. It took a long time to figure out where we wanted to go and how to use the miles and hotel points we've been saving for several years. Of course, I wish Adrienne was here as we had hoped for a family trip for this milestone but it'll just be the two of us this time.

Some days are really hard but there are rays of sunshine and laughter, and things to look forward to. I miss her each and every day. I miss her phone calls and texts, her movie reviews on Facebooks, sending me articles from the NY Times, and just sitting and watching TV. Adrienne would be proud, cheering us on.

Monday, February 28, 2011

A friend sent this to me yesterday. It captures so much.

"If you know someone who has lost a child, and you're afraid to mention them because you think you might make them sad by reminding them that they died--you're not reminding them. They didn't forget they died. What you're reminding them of is that you remembered that they lived, and that, is a great gift." ~Elizabeth Edwards

Thank you, Annie.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

For Kirsten

Our friend Kirsten died earlier this week. I like to think that she and Adrienne are together, comforting each other, smiling down on us now. When Adrienne died, Kirsten posted this beautiful poem.

A Parable of Immortality
by Henry Van Dyke

I am standing upon the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze
and starts for the blue ocean.
She is an object of beauty and strength,
and I stand and watch until at last she hangs
like a speck of white cloud
just where the sea and sky come down to mingle with each other.
Then someone at my side says,
"There she goes"
Gone where?
Gone from my sight . . . that is all.
She is just as large in mast and hull and spar
as she was when she left my side
and just as able to bear her load of living freight
to the place of destination.
Her diminished size is in me, not in her.
And just at the moment
when someone at my side says,
"There she goes"
there are other eyes watching her coming . . .
and other voices ready to take up the glad shout . . .
"Here she comes"