Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

May 19, 5/19, MAY 19

May 19--- I wonder if this date will ever pass without tears.  It has been two whole years without Lisa and time has not healed all wounds.  I still feel a hole in my heart that only Lisa filled.  Five years of fighting cancer still seems easier than two years of no Lisa.

I have not really posted anything in the past two years because I have retreated behind my "wall".  This wall protects me and allows me to function.  When I get the courage to peek around the wall I quickly retreat.  The emotion is overwhelming.  I'm afraid if that wall comes down even a bit I will lose my mind because  everything I know, believed, learned was built on foundation that was shaken greatly when Lisa left us.

Depending on my mood and mindset, there are moments when I can take a brick out of the wall and find the positive from this loss.  Thoughts like "we were so lucky to have Lisa at all.", "Cancer provided us the opportunity  to do/see ......" "It was a good thing that she passed away at home.", "Thankfully, we were able to control her pain."   These moments are short-lived and almost always end up in a rage of anger because she should have NEVER gotten cancer.  No one should, especially no child.  This generally turns into a rant against God that quickly turns into an internal debate as I question my whole belief system and try to figure out what is real.  And the turmoil ends when I shove the brick back in place, wipe my tears and realize it will never make sense and I have to find a way to keep going.

And, so far, I do keep going, but often it is just pushing through and keeping busy as oppossed to really living and enjoying life. I try to remember that cancer taught us to live in the moment but struggle with balancing "living in the moment" vs just "getting through the moment".  

With Maranda graduating this year, Thomas getting his first job, Christina turning "Sweet 16" soon there is a lot to celebrate and be joyous about in the big and small moments. And, I will be joyous and happy and full of love.  I will use all my energy to embrace these great moments,  keep my priorities in line, and not leave happiness behind.  But, sadly, there will still be a hole in my heart that can only be filled by Lisa.

So, as I end this post I provide you all with a link to a song that has been playing thru my head for the past two weeks...Hole Hearted.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

When asked why you wear a gold ribbon, you can answer:



The gold ribbon represents something precious and pure.
It is the symbol for childhood cancer and the need for a cure.
 
Cancer is vicious, it doesn’t play fair.
It robs children of life despite their young years.
 
Funding is needed, as well as, research and new drugs.
For cancer is a condition not fixed by big hugs.
 
Every year more instances of childhood cancer are diagnosed.
More than any other disease, cancer kills kids the most.

Wear the gold ribbon and wear it with pride.
Wear it for children fighting cancer and for those who have died.

Sadly, not all cancer charities support childhood cancer research and less than 4% of federal cancer research funding is dedicated to it.
 
Should you choose to make a donation to support childhood cancer research please consider donating to the University of Michigan/Mott's Hospital where Lisa received her care. It took a few years, but I am happy to say that the hospital now has a campaign called Block Out Cancer where all donations are dedicated to pediatric cancer research

Click here to donate online to Block Out Cancer
 
To donate in Lisa’s honor, you can make out a check to:
University of Michigan and write Lisa McMaster-BLAST in the memo field
 
Mail check to:
Office of Medical Development
Attn: Mike Hartwell
1000 Oakbrook
Suite 100
Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Join us

Maranda, Chrissy and I have signed up for another mud run.  This one is called Mud Factor and is on June 28 in Petersburg, MI.  We are signed up for 11:45 wave under team name of LoveYouLisa.   We would love for others to join us!

Also, if you plan to join us at the St. Baldrick event in Plymouth on 5/18 at Plymouth Roc from 1-5 let us know asap so we can save you seat.   You can email or FB us your response.

 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Lisa Loved Adventure....Join us

I am trying to be active, have fun and try new adventures (which Lisa loved to do).

I have a started team called LoveYouLisa and Maranda, Christina and I will be participating in a 5k Foam Run-: 10:30 A.M. Saturday July 26- in - Grand Rapids, MI 2014.

You can find more information about FoamFest at the event website: http://5kfoamfest.com/Location/Index/47


If you haven't registered yet, you can register and join the team here:
https://endurancecui.active.com/event-reg/select-race?e=5610104&i=9e77f2ea-ef51-4a14-9e52-2af8916ddbb5

If you've already registered, you can join the team here:
https://myevents.active.com/

Join us!  It will be fun!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Honoring Lisa 5/18/2014

As the one year anniversary of Lisa earning her wings approaches I wondered how/what I should do to "mark the moment".  I found out that there will be a St. Baldrick event in Plymouth on 5/18 at Plymouth Roc from 1-5.  It seems like the perfect thing to do in Lisa's memory.

St Baldricks is an organization dedicated to raising funding for childhood cancer and they have very  little overhead costs.  Only 2.8% of general St. Baldrick's finances go towards management/general fund. So 97% of the money you contribute will go directly towards helping children who are fighting cancer.

At the event, participants agree to get their heads shaved, and supporters agree to donate some money to the organization in order to laugh at said participants, and help stamp out childhood cancer, all at the same time. This event will also have many fun things besides the shaving of the heads, and you do not have to have your head shaved to come out and have some fun. There will be raffles for items donated from places like Dean Sadler Salon, Salon Awesome, Busch's, A&E Jewelry, Residence Inn and I AM DETROIT clothing. Other fun things are, 50/50 drawing, photo booth, kid's games, and food and drink specials. 

I reached out to the coordinator to thank him for raising awareness and funding for childhood cancer.  I told him I would like to post the information on our blog in hopes of getting friends and family to join us in honoring Lisa and all the other little warriors. The event generally draws 200+ people so there will be a crowd but the coordinator has offered to try and reserve some  time/space necessary to accommodate Lisa's family and friends. 

If you would like to join us in this event please let me know ASAP how many people and I will look at getting seating so we can join together on 5/18 in honor of Lisa.

BLAST Cancer! Live Strong!


Thursday, March 20, 2014

10 months since she left us

It is 10 months since Lisa left us.  It does not seem like it can possibly be that long.  I still am in a state of disbelief and hoping to wake up from this bad dream.  The new tv series "Resurrection" has me crossing my fingers and holding my breath as I "wish" something like that could really happen. I carry on and the hole in my heart remains and I wonder when the day will come that I wake up and don't count how many days she has been gone.

A few weeks ago, a mom of one of Lisa's friends sent me the following:

OMG hi! Lol I am so happy to hear from you! I have tried to get in touch with you since kindergarten! Lol I just have to take a few min to tell you a few things! First of all, I saw how busy you were at the viewing and things so I never made it over to give my condolences but I am so sorry for your loss... Macey took it very hard. Her teacher had to call me to come get her from school when they made the announcement. When Macey started kindergarten and eventually Lisa came to class, she came home and told me how she had the PRETTIEST new friend in the WHOLE WORLD and how AWESOME her hair was. Everyday, "I wish my hair was like Lisa's, it's so pretty, she's so pretty, she's not like the other girls".... To my astonishment I eventually got a newsletter home about Lisa's nurse coming to answer any questions the kids may have about cancer... I had no idea the girl mason just RAVED abt had cancer and short hair... It made my heart flutter that mason saw something so special in her. Macey started cutting ALL her Barbie dolls hair off and naming them ALL Lisa... She put little headbands with big flowers on each one of their little bald heads because "Lisa wore them and looked BEAUTIFUL" lol Macey just adored her. I work in hospice so once Macey met Lisa, she became really fascinated in cancer and it's cruelty and started volunteering with me on a regular basis at my and other nursing homes .... In first grade, she wanted to cut her hair short to look like Lisa. Everyone thought I was NUTTS for allowing a 6 yr old to decide she wanted no hair voluntarily but I knew it meant a lot to her, so we went to cut it off and donate it.... She COULDN'T WAIT to tell Lisa. Lol however it broke her heart to learn of a ten inch donation rule as she only had 8 cut off ): she then sucked it up and promised she'd grow it back out and in the name of Lisa the most beautiful girl in the world lol that she would give a kid somewhere new hair.... I will have you know that because of your wonderfully perfect inspiring little girl, yesterday, Macey finally reached her goal and shaved her head... Lol bald. To mail every strand to locks of love (: 

Macey does not let a day go by without thinking of her, praying about her, or sometimes falling apart abouther... She loved her so much and sleeps every night with the baby doll she got at her viewing... You raised a wonderful daughter, who inspired mine in so many ways and I have always just wanted to tell you that! I know soon after a death, that you are bombarded with flowers and cards, but I also know that once that passes, sometimes is when you need the most condolence... Sometimes 8 weeks down the road you have a rough night and those flowers and cards have long since stopped, so with that being said, this is just a small reminder that we think of you often and your family. We hope you are all well and we hope you know what a tremendous little warrior you raised.... Hope all is well. In our thoughts & prayers...
 
The timing of this email was perfect as I had been struggling and plagued  with thoughts that perhaps all Lisa's pain and struggles had been in vain as time goes by and we carry on and  we forget all the lessons Lisa taught us.
 
Another friend recently shared ...A friend is running in a Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach this weekend. His daughter made loom ribbons to raise money for Live Strong. My friend will wear the ribbons in the race. I thought you might like to know that my memories of Lisa will be with him. That strong, sweet girl of yours is still with us in spirit!
 
Thank you to Macey, her mom and all of you all who have kept us in your thoughts and shared with us what Lisa meant to you and that you too still think of her.  It helps to know we are not alone.
 
Here's a pic of Macey with her "Lisa-hairdo".  You go girl!
 
 
Here's a pic of the gold loom ribbon for the Virgin Beach marathon....BLAST cancer, Live STRONG!