Wednesday, December 9, 2009


It has been the weirdest weather day around here today. Sunny one moment, and then the sky was black as night, and then the ice pellets shot out of the sky. And then the cycle repeated. And repeated. And repeated. And the wind was so strong that it nearly picked our extremely large and non-green SUV up and tossed us like a matchbox car. Mother Nature was just not happy today. She could not decide what to do. But at one moment about 4 pm I looked towards the sky (as I often do) and there were those super long bright sunbeams pouring through the clouds...maybe 10 of them. They looked like giant slides in the sky with a free trip back down to earth. I couldn't help but think of Ashley.

We travelled north today...about 90 attend Ashley's visitation service. You have to know that this was one of the hardest things I have had to do. I have not been into a funeral home since I was the one standing up there...and talking to the whole line of people for Mom's service. I felt strong for about 60 seconds but then I saw all the pictures of our friends...a happy family of five. The force of leukemia ripped them apart. I saw Dr B. How many of these does he have to go to? I REALLY don't want to know the answer to that question. There was Shannon and Ana some of the same people that care for Ally. We truly are a family. And then I saw Ashley's little sister running through the room, happy, putting a stuffed animal up in her sisters coffin. She was laughing and she has always reminded me of Carly...we have always said that. She is too young to know the pain...and good for her. I was wishing that I could feel like her. Because I could barely compose myself, but I tried. Ashley's mom just held onto me held onto me and didn't let me go. She told me she was missing the hospital already. Because that is what we know.

Jerad and I have had a very rough couple of days. Lots of tears. Lots of worry. We never used to be like this. We are strong people, but even the strongest must fall down. When counts are low for these kids, anything can happen. So Jerad and I were talking about how we both just kind of put things out of our mind. It may sound callous, and really most people couldn't understand. But we HAVE to do this. We cannot worry about every little thing or we will be consumed. Instead of rarely sleeping, we would never sleep. Sometimes it is better to be a little ignorant.

Every parent has fears. I am scared a lot. But I hold my three children close to me as a much as I can. I am way more overlooking of trivial irritating things than I used to be. Little things just don't bother me anymore. But big things do. Every night I rock my little Carly girl for just a minute or two, and then I lay her down to go to bed. I usually have 1000 things to get to and it is know the drill. But tonight, I rocked her and rocked her and daydreamed and prayed for a long time. And then I looked down and that little angel was asleep in my lap. A little peaceful gift for me.

Please pray this holiday season for all of those people who are living their fears and that they find some sort of peace to get them through.


  1. Isn't it amazing how rocking your baby can provide such a sense of peace? I rocked both of ours for quite awhile when they were little and when I allowed myself to stay and put the to-do list aside for a bit, I always found that I too needed to be rocked. Tonight I will pray for you to be rocked as often and as many times as you need it until Ally is well.


  2. Very well said! I think we all experience so many of the same emotions going through this nightmare. We will always be a family whether we've met or not. Cancer families are united in a way that is indescribable to those who don't live in this world. I just sobbed reading your entry and how Ashley's mother wouldn't let you go. She needs you so much and it's got to be very difficult to be strong for her because you want to breakdown as well. I will pray for your strength to help your friend get through closing the door to cancer and yet opening it to another new place for this family.
    Many hugs,
    Diona Guy

  3. Janel, tonight I get to rock my new granddaughter for the first time and I will think of all of you and the tough times you are going through. My prayers are with you and all the families that have experienced this terrible disease. John is watching over our Ella from heaven and you can be sure that he will take care of Ashley as well. Continue to be strong, you can do it. I love the photos of decorating and cookie making, cannot wait to do that in the future, for now I will just be happy to hold and rock her. All my love.

  4. Janel, I'm so sorry this sadness surrounds you right now. I'm so sorry for little Ashley's family. My prayers are with them. May you have many more of your lovely Christmas moments, including rocking your dear baby to sleep, to keep you centered and at peace. I love you!

  5. When I was little I thought those sun rays were where Jesus came down to Earth. Nothing sounds closer to the truth now. Just know that God's love is with you in those little glimpses and gifts of a sweet girl feeling no stress and falling peacefully to sleep in you arms. Take care, I love you!