It's been a rough day. I miss him. I'm trying to stay busy on CHERUBS stuff, I'm up to my ears in sites and projects and Congressional bills and tons and tons of really great stuff. But I can't focus. I miss my son.
These are some photos of B & G volunteering in memory of Shane. We're putting together Adopt A Hospital Kits and CDH HOPE Totebags for CHERUBS. This is my office. It's a mess, as usual. But we accomplish a lot and help a lot of CDH families so it's worth it. Don't I have the best sons in the world? All 3 of them. I love you B & G and Shane, with all my heart.
A lot has been going on with CHERUBS... all good stuff. We have had our share of drama the past few years - which I won't post about because this blog is about my son, not drama. But dealing with the drama... dealing with a few women who would love nothing more than to shut down CHERUBS and punish me for the horrible sin of not wanting their nonsense in our charity... that is about Shane. Because to me, that's like hurting my son. I started CHERUBS not for my son but I did start it because of him. Without Shane I never would've heard of CDH. I've given over 25,000 hours of my life to volunteer in his honor and in his memory. My heart and soul and all the love I have for my son are wrapped up in this charity. So I feel like a lioness protecting my son's memory. I just wish people would leave CHERUBS and him and me alone.
(**** Interjected update - 6:53 pm 1/28/10 - I was writing all this this evening, before this post even went live... this blog page was being stalked and then posted on Facebook by these same women. On his birthday. This is the type of stuff I deal with and it's so wrong. This is my son's memorial blog for Christ's sake*****).
CHERUBS is a good thing - it has helped 1000's of people (including them). I know God led me to start this charity, I know my son is proud of me, I know there are babies still here because of the information or support their parents received. That's all that matters. That's what I answer to God for. That's what life is all about... and sometimes death too. Taking the worst and making something good out of it. So I continue to run CHERUBS, keep fighting for it, keep fighting CDH... so that someday no more parents have to let balloons go to remember their children instead of watching them open birthday presents.
Shane's been gone 10 years now... I don't miss him any less. I can still hear him, smell him... as if he was just here. I feel guilty complaining about how much I miss him when I know how blessed I was to have had him for 6 and a half years. I don't know if that makes missing him harder or easier. I just know that I miss him still and my heart is still broken.
After 10 years... people forget. Friends and family think you've "moved on". If I have 1 piece of advice for those of you reading this that are trying to help someone through grief... we ALWAYS miss them. Birthdays, holidays, angelversaries are HARD. But my CHERUBS family... always remember. I have had over 100 e-mails, facebook notes, forum private messages and calls today... wishing Shane a Happy Birthday or just to tell me they were thinking of him and me today. If every CDH parent has that much support - I've done my job well. What an amazing, amazing group of friends I have. God bless them for remembering my little boy today.
Not to forget my mom... a saint on earth and grieving mother herself. She never forgets her grandson, ever. She understands. I can call her and cry and not say a word and she understands. She's there if I need to talk, if I hear need to hear someone talk about my son, if I need a hug... I love my Mommy.
Craig let balloons go with me today (thank you, honey). We were planning on going to VA to the cemetary this weekend but the weather is not cooperating. My parents are expecting 8 inches of snow, we're expecting a few inches of snow and ice here in NC. I'm a little upset that we can't go... I treasure my alone time at the cemetary with Shane. Being almost 3 hours away, I don't get to visit him often. And I was looking forward to getting that "family photo" with all 3 of my boys too. But you know the old saying... we make plans and God laughs.
Shane's birthday balloons, flying to the moon. Watching them float away today I wished so badly I could go buy a couple dozen of them, hold them up and fly up to him Mary Poppins style. Just fly away to my son and hand him his birthday balloons. I miss him so much.
This is a graphic I made for CHERUBS a few weeks ago. It represents all the babies lost to Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia and brings awareness to the cause. Did you know that over 600,000 babies have been born with CDH since 2000? Over 300,000 of them did not survive. My son is a statistic, a victim of CDH. I hate CDH.
Oh Shane, Mommy loves you and misses you so much!!!!!! 17... how could you be 17????? You're still 6 and a half to me.... running your match box cars on the floor, blowing raspberries. Tipping your glasses up on your nose. Playing with your hearing aids. Twirling your Mic-Key button. Laughing. I miss you. Happy Birthday, baby!!!! Dear God, hold my little boy tight today and please let him know how much I love him.