Jeff's Mom

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  1. We returned home after a very fitting send off for a truly giving person. I know he would have loved the gathering. He was a member if an antique car club and was definitely into bands like Pink Floyd, Dire Straits, and the Stones. The main message was that he loved everyone without hesitation or discrimination. What a lovely legacy to leave behind. Shannon, oh my dear ...I am so very sorry. The poor girl. I'm glad you came here to talk. The place where we all get it. Please keep us posted and we are sending loving wishes and prayers your way. I have really missed your posts. Somersky...PTSD really is a horrible thing. I imagine we all suffer from one form of it on this site after losing a loved one. It has been seven years since my son died and my husband and I still find ourselves pushing back the memories from that night. We, too, performed CPR on him even after he took his last breath waiting for the paramedics. The feeling still haunts my husband as he felt his last breath.I will tell you this...now after several years we push that memory to the back burner and focus on something that makes us smile when we think of him. It will take quite some time to find your feet touch the ground again. But know this...we have all walked in those shoes and we are still functioning. We have our ups and downs and good and bad days even after a lot of time has passed. Hold on with both hands and know we are here for you. Tommy's Mom, heck it sounds to me as if you have raised your children in a very responsible manner. That to me is a huge accomplishment! It will be lovely to have her with you for those few weeks. Enjoy her company while you can. Tell me, did they finally get over the silly reporting about our GG gently guiding the Queen's elbow while she descended the stairs of Canada House? I know it was considered a break with protocol... but honestly...he was concerned that she might take a tumble and the results could have been fairly serious. A full face plant could have been a lot worse. Well, we are off to sit outside to sip a cool drink and toast our dear friend. Thinking of everyone. Heck Georgina, I just read your post. Please know we are wishing you the best of recoveries and a speedy one if I do say so! Kate
  2. Susan, thank you for sharing your post yesterday. It warmed my heart and came at just the right time. I agree about how we all interconnect with the universe through our actions. Whether it be in a grand style... or in a simple one on one way with another human being... we all put that love and caring back. I remember Muhammad Ali said: "Service to others is the rent we pay for our room here on Earth." Dianne, I am glad to see you back and wondered what had happened. I can honestly say that you have always offered a kind word and support to all. Never feel that you have let the side down. That simply is not true. Dee, so sorry to hear about a former student. Sending prayers for her family. I am happy to see that there is more awareness about depression and now I hope that people will pay better attention to that information. I also would like to add that there are many loving and supportive families that have lost a child to depression. That is the nature of this beast. So frequently the ones suffering the most are very good at hiding it. We all need to show compassion and understanding and hopefully when we see someone struggling, or if they feel safe in opening up to us... we can direct them towards the proper professional help...without fear of stigmatization. It is another fabulous day here today. Brilliant sunny skies. We are off to attend the celebration of life for our friend this afternoon. I'm sure he will smile to himself when he see his many friends and family gathered to pay tribute to him. Love to ALL, for a decent day. Kate
  3. Oh, cry me a river! We all have problems and it doesn't mean we can go and take the easy way out. They are just weak and spineless!!! Now that I have your attention...this is the crrrrrrrap that I have had to endure for years. As if our loss was not hard enough. I, so agree with you Lesley. I have mentioned many times on this site about educating people to the very real issue of depression being a REAL medical illness. Sadly, we live in a society that is mostly blocked to educating themselves into thinking a new way about this illness. I was so pleased to hear about the graduation. Congratulations! You must have been beaming with pride. What a joyous occasion with your son along the way to cheer things on. Well done!
  4. Lou Ann, no, you have not said a thing to offend. I often find that in the summer things can become quiet for a day or so when the weather is particularly nice. We all go about grieving in our own personal way. We do what works best for us. For now if shopping in a place where you can feel free to breathe comfortably is what you crave than you go ahead and do it. We all have triggers that set us off and places where we feel secure. There is really no right or wrong way except if we hurt someone. After a time you do find that you build a new network of supports. Some people that we had considered close will let us down. And then there will be new contacts as we slowly grow stronger. We begin to feel safe leaning on those that have proven their sincerity. It is not an easy process. It can be very painful at a time that we simply feel we can not take any more. But life is like that. Just when we feel there is no longer hope a door opens. I've learned not to fight it. I suddenly did notice a strong smell of smoke this afternoon. I gather the wind had shifted and was bringing it from the fires. Our summer has been spectacular. Perfect day temps and no pesky bugs. Just to my liking. The memorial service for our friend is on Sunday. I hear they are expecting approximately 400 people. He was such a decent and giving person. It is going to be a busy weekend as they are holding our Film Fest on the Lake. The forecast is definitely perfect for the event. Colleen, I know it was difficult to do what you did. I really hope that by doing this you will find the sense of release and peace that comes with forgiveness. Brian will be smiling at what a super Mom he has. You can be sure of that. Sherry, thank you for sharing that verse. How truly fitting. Somersky...how are you holding up? Georgina, thinking of you. Let us know how you are managing. Gretchen...how is the pup? Dee, how is Jon doing these day? Wishing everyone a peaceful evening. Kate
  5. Dee, how lovely to mention Jeff's birthday. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. It sounded as if your day was as special as your girl. Wonderful memories shared with close people. Susan, thank you for sharing the family pictures. I'm sure you will plan a terrific gathering for your boy. Always loved and cherished! Love to everyone as they start another day. Kate
  6. Thank you everyone for your kind wishes for Jeff's birthday yesterday. We had a low keyed but lovely day. We were able to walk into his bench and sit looking at the water. There were so many dragonflies and birds to keep us company. The butterflies and hummingbirds were enjoying dancing around his flowers. The weather could not have been more pleasant. No matter how long a time it has been since he has been gone I agree that it is always hard to accept that another year has passed without him here with us. Lou Ann, the fires in British Columbia are certainly spreading. Many more people have been evacuated and it sounds as if it will be some time before they can return. Here's hoping for some serious rain. I sure hope the smoke does not reach us as I have asthma. Sending wishes for everyone that your day brings you comfort and peace. Kate
  7. Somersky, I love your pictures of your son. What a handsome young man he is. I am so sorry for your loss. Please keep sharing with us and know you have found a great place to come to be understood. Gretchen, I love the new pup! What a cutie. Steve's Mom...Oh, I wish I had known. I live a hour drive from Winnipeg and head into the city regularly. We are the home town of Winnie The Pooh. They have a huge collection of stuff at the Children's Store at The Assiniboine Park Zoo. Dee, thank you for sharing your poems and I hope that today is a bright and sunny day reflecting the spirit of your wonderful girl. Lou Ann, thank you for thinking of me. We are keeping it quiet today. We are now almost eight years this Christmas into the time he died. He would have been 36 today. He died at 28. It still hurts like heck. Much like a scab with the sore just below the surface. Still, we keep on going. One day at a time and it is amazing how quickly the times passes. We'll take a walk into his memorial bench site as it is a really beautiful day today. Georgina, and Becky...thinking of you. Take each day at a time and let us know how things are going. Love to you ALL. Kate
  8. It has been a full seven years now since my son died. I have seen many ups and downs. The reaction of people under such circumstances has mostly been distaste or withdrawal. The best response is to say that you are coping as best as you can under the circumstances. Leave it at that and wait for their response. If they drop it then change the topic. If however they offer any support then gratefully accept it. People can be so judgemental and you do not ever have to explain yourself. You have lost your child and the end result is that you are left in a state of terrible pain. HUGS to you! Kate
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  10. Dee, thinking of you tomorrow as you remember that special girl of yours. We will be with you in thought and we are sending a huge HUG. Kate
  11. Colleen, sending a huge and warm HUG. We all know how hard each special occasion can hit us. When we see how other families are intact it crushes us. We will never have an answer that will satisfy us as to why it had to happen. I am dreading the 16th as it approaches Jeff's birthday. To make matters worse on the 19th we are gathering for a family get together. All kids and family are to join together for a party. I must admit since his death I do not feel much like celebrating anything. One foot in front of the other is about all we can ask of ourselves. Thinking of everyone.
  12. And there are many signs we are given by our children to help us to cope with their loss. I remember the day of Jeff's memorial it was a really beautiful day. We waited months to hold it and it gave me the time to plan a special gathering of his friends, etc. It was held at a lovely resort that overlooked the lake. At the beginning we all stood on a high cliff that was covered by a tent overlooking the water. We gathered while prayers were said. A dragonfly kept landing on the hand of the person that was holding the prayer service. It simply would not fly away even though they kept shaking their hand. Everyone laughed and someone called out that it must be Jeff. I knew that it was a sign. He was there to witness the love being shared and shown. Particularly when he knew that an awesome Irish wake followed. Music, food and stories. This was not a typical religious ceremony at all... but something that a young man would consider SWEET! I even had a table with ice cream sundae and toppings set up for the kids. Everyone left with a smile on their face as it should be. As much as we miss them terribly our pain is softened by the hope and certainty that we will see them again one day. Hold on to that fact on your lowest days.
  13. Thinking of you today Colleen as you remember your precious boy. Sending a huge "HUG".
  14. Dee, so sorry to hear about yet another loss. All the more reason that we can't live in the past or focus on only the future. We have to embrace the "now" is our lives and live life to the fullest. Each day is so precious. It truly is a gift. It is up to us how we embrace it. Sending prayers for her family.
  15. Georgina, I am glad you are now at home for this brief period. It is always so much more comfortable in your own familiar surroundings to recoup. Try to rest as much as you can and know that everyone here is behind you all the way. I had a nice visit from my friend this afternoon. She stopped by to sit outside to relax for a bit and we talked about things. I agree that she seemed to feel I had a better understanding after losing Jeff. She is doing as well as can be expected. We all know those early days and can relate to the shock. I sent some food over as I knew she was not really interested in eating. I do admire her for her stamina. It was a wonderful weekend as far as the weather was concerned. They held an Antique Car show in Gimli today and there were throngs of people up to take in the event. Also, the beaches were laden with people trying to get away from the city for some sun and relaxation. We walked into Jeff's bench a couple of times and just sat and watched the water lapping on the shore. The pelicans and gulls kept us company. Such a peaceful setting. I counted ten types of wildflowers as we walked back. The scent was lovely. Wishing everyone a peaceful evening. Kate
  16. From past experience I have learned that we are tougher than we give ourselves credit for. Just when we feel we can't take any more it often seems as if we are hit yet one more time. Georgina, oh my, how is it possible? Please know that we are all sending our wishes for a good outcome to your surgery and our thoughts will be with you during this difficult time. Good luck!
  17. Thanks for your prayers and kind words. I have been in shock all day. My heart aches and I am sick to my stomach with sadness. He was such a kind-hearted and decent guy that helped me when Ross had his surgery. He and his wife live close by and they are dog lovers much like ourselves. I gather the autopsy will give us more details as to what actually happened. It was his wish not to have a service. Colleen, you are so right. Get out there and live as if each day is your last. It looks to be a wonderful weekend as far as the weather is concerned. Highs in the high 20's C. Sunny and a nice breeze. We have counted 125 tomatoes on the plants that Ross has planted. He is grinning like a Cheshire cat every time he talks about them. Not much rain to date so a ton of watering. Wishing you all a really peaceful few days ahead. Kate
  18. I am feeling horrible today. I spoke to a friend who told me that her husband passed away in his sleep yesterday. She found him in the morning when she woke up.He was such a decent guy. My heart aches for her. Please keep them in your prayers. Kate
  19. Lesley, I am so glad that you recognized the need to reach out for additional support. We need to take the initiative regarding our own welfare. It is a bumpy road for sure that we walk. Have you had a chance to do much gardening the past few weeks? Our weather has been a mix of both sun and cloud. The temps are actually quite pleasant and not too hot. Dee, reaching across the miles and sending a warm "HUG" as you recall those last few days of Eri's life. Thank you for sharing those very moving and personal last few days...we all understand how hard it is to relive them in our mind. Gretchen, how did the tournament go? Let us know when you can how you are doing. Diane...hope you are ok. Sandy, how are you? How is Kelly?
  20. Lou Ann...you phrased it beautifully. I agree completely. Happy 4th, of July! So much to be grateful for. Enjoy the day.
  21. On a slightly lighter note I thought I'd share some trivia facts about Canada as this is our special anniversary. Roughly 30% of Canada's land mass is occupied by forest. Canada has more lakes than the rest of the world combined. Canada is home to caribou, wolverine and polar bears. Of the world's approximately 25,000 polar bears 60% live in Canada. Basketball fans can thank Canadian James Naismith for inventing the game in 1891. Popular children's book Winnie The Pooh was based on a real life bear that was owned by a Vet who came from Winnipeg and served in the war.
  22. Margo, I agree with Lou Ann. We do understand all too well the difficulties that lie ahead. I'm sure this trip away for your son will be a much needed break where he will be surrounded by his loving family. Our older son had just returned from living in Ireland when Jeff died. They moved to Calgary and as he is away from the memories of his home town he has never really come to terms with Jeff's death I feel. He has such a busy and active life with two young children that keep him on his toes. He has never actually "wanted" to come back home to visit since...although he has... but for very brief times. His way of avoiding what happened. Susan, I love that picture. Everyone appears to be having such a great time. Aren't we lucky to have such wonderful memories. They sure can help to keep us together at our low points. Gretchen...we have your back! Good luck tomorrow. I know it is a bittersweet day for you. Sending "HUGS" and warm wishes. Dee, how goes the recovery for Jon? I hope he is feeling a bit better with each day. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that his pain is starting to settle down a bit. Lesley, I thought of your picture last evening as we attended a barbecue with some friends. There were a few people that we had not met and who did not know the story about Jeff. The conversation turned to our health care and the changes that are occurring. For some reason someone mentioned suicide. My heart stopped for a brief moment. I was sitting in a part of the room that would have caused attention had I stood up and left. I said to myself that I had two options. Leave or listen. I sat quietly and listened to what they had to say. I realized that they did not have one iota of what they were talking about. It was quite sad actually. As I was having a good time until that point I decided to keep my mouth shut and not put them straight. Not because I did not have the nerve... but because I did not have the energy to explain... and they were not going to get it under any circumstances anyway. It was obvious by their comments how ignorant they were on the subject. I also believe that not all people who decide to take their lives are insane or out of it. Some are very lucid actually and have made a choice for whatever reason. Those reasons are often only known to them...as in the case of a woman I knew of who was given a very bad diagnosis and the future only looked to be filled with much severe agony. It was her choice to end her life at the point where she was going to be a huge burden to her family. It is not my place to criticize her. And the general populace really needs to step up to the plate as far as trying to understand the severity of severe depression. It is a valid physical illness very much like any other illness. The idea that it is a sign of weakness has got to stop. That is just plain stupidity as far as I am concerned. People need to feel free to be able to step up and openly admit their depression without fear of stigmatization. There is help out there and we need to see that they are given relief the same as any other person in need of support. Thinking of everyone as your July 4th. approaches. Peace to All. Kate
  23. It has been a really hectic day, but a good one. I can honestly say that after Jeff died I honestly felt I would never want to do anything again. Time has a way of healing those scars and slowly the light begins to find its way into the cracks again. There was a great parade this morning. This afternoon spent with friends and this evening a parade of boats that are lit up along the water before the fireworks. Good stuff all around. Lou Ann, for the first two years I walked around our home in silence. The triggers sent me into a downward spiral. Jeff loved his music and it filled our house on a daily basis. Everything from rock to jazz, etc. Eventually it just started to become easier to listen to the stereo, etc. I will admit that Xmas is and always will be difficult with the Christmas Carols. So much emotion and memories attached. We all go about it in our own way. I, too, loved Diana. It was such a heartache to her boys and such a terrible loss to everyone. I will say that Camilla appears to lead a fairly quiet life from what I hear. She is very active in her involvement with abused women. William is bringing the royals into the new age. I still will always support them. Thanks to all for the warm wishes. Kate
  24. Dee, I hope that each day sees a positive improvement for Jon. I bet the kids were over the moon to see their Daddy back home. We headed into the city yesterday to a cute old word type toy store. They had amazing toys for kids and we picked up a couple of awesome kites and a few other outdoor type toys for the girls. I think it is so important that they get outside in the fresh air and make their own fun during the summer. I had to smile when I saw that Bono was performing today. How Jeff loved that band along with Coldplay. Prince Charles and The Duchess of Cornwall ( Camilla) are also here to open the ceremonies. It should be a long but fun packed day for all. Georgina, how is your daughter coming along? How nice that the doctor and air ambulance people were so attentive and understanding towards your pain. There are good people out there for sure. Becky, I hope you are starting to improve. You have had so much on your plate to deal with. Hang in there. Dianne, thinking of you.
  25. HAPPY CANADA DAY/ BONNE FETE CANADA! Wishing all Canadians a great day! Many special activities and celebrations to acknowledge our special anniversary. Enjoy. Lou Ann, Jeff would have loved this as Bono and The Edge are one of the Internnational acts performing on Parliament Hill today. Love to all, Kate