Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My heart has a hole in it

We would like to share our little ray of sunshine with you.  Here is the slideshow my sister-in-law Nicola Mooney and our dear friend Jason Holmgren put together for us for Drew's memorial service.  If the above video does not work for you, cut and paste this link in: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwEDNDnXz61

It feels as though my Rhode Island-sized heart has a Texas-sized hole in it.  I miss my little Drew so much.  I have wandered all over the house looking for something, anything that might smell like him, but have come to the conclusion that a) there isn't anything, and b) it's probably a good thing that there isn't anything because it would be too painful.  I realized today that when you are drawn to one's smell, it is not just their smell - it's also the sense of being near them that is so touching.  
I am amazed at the peace that has surrounded us this week and the confidence that Drew is better now, but I am also amazed at how much I miss his presence.  I go from hurting to trying not to think back to hurting again, and then after moving through a cycle, I find I come out peaceful, if not a bit short on tears.  Jordan and I went to the mall today in search of something and I found that experience very taxing.  There was an abundance of moms and babies there, and more than that, moms with two small children.  Though I feel happiness for them, it causes me to reflect on our own situation.  Jordan and I sat down for lunch and he left for a moment.  After sitting with only my thoughts for a while I realized I was feeling sorry for myself, and it occurred to me that though grief is ok, I still have so much to be thankful for.  I don't have time to feel sorry for myself, and that is not a positive way to deal with grief!  Please pray for us that we are able to see the blessings in our life right now - I find it helps so much to find things to be thankful for!
Case in Point - last night I was missing Drew so much.  I had come to know him so well over the last 4.5 months - we had spent so much time together and I had learned to watch for his smallest nonverbal cue.  As I was putting Peyton to bed I felt so sad that Drew wasn't there too that I didn't enjoy the process of putting Peyton to bed, or the silliness and life that he exudes.  At about 10:30 p.m. last night, Peyton awoke with bad dreams (about the Loch Ness Monster of all things!).  When he first awoke, we did not know what had upset him so much.  He was carrying on and nearly incoherent.  After asking him yes/no questions we finally realized he had a bad dream, but both Jordan and I found ourselves worrying that he was sick before we drew that conclusion.  He went back to sleep after some snuggling, and I learned a lesson I hope I won't soon forget.  The thought of him being sick, losing him, or having to watch him suffer hurt so much that I realized how much I loved him!  I have let life happen this summer and have not intentionally parented him.  I need to learn to enjoy him again, and find out who HE really is.  Not who I think he is, but who he thinks he is.  He's nearly 4 and capable enough of communicating that, I just need to stop to watch him close enough to see it.  Lessons learned last night: Live in the moment.  Be thankful.  Parent intentionally.  And most importantly, let him show me who he is - stop long enough to see it.  It was an amazing day with him today, and already I feel so much more connected with him.  Here's what I found out today - Peyton's favorites: Color - DARK blue; Food - psketti noodles; Shirt - Mickey Mouse shirt; Game - Go Fish; Friend - Eli; Place to go - Eli's house; Thing to sleep with - Mommy; Thing to do in a day - play with Mommy; Number - 3.  I know it probably was just favorites of the moment, but it amazed me that he so clearly knew what he liked. 

Please continue to pray for our family - we are still waiting for test results from Drew's tests (we could be waiting for months still).  The results could determine whether or not we are able to have any more children, and if it could impact any of our other family members.  Please pray we will get a definitive diagnosis and that it will not have any impact on anyone apart from Drew.  Thank you so much for your continued prayers - really.  They are making a difference. 


Anonymous said...

What a loving and heart wrenching tribute...the slide show to Drew and the post to Peyton and his amazing Mom. I could only watch part of the slide show because I finally couldn't see anymore through the tears. Thank you so much for sharing.
My heart felt prayers and thoughts are still going out. Not a day goes by when I don't think of all of you many times and hope that you find the peace and comfort you need.
Somehow these words seem inadequate but they come from the heart.

Anonymous said...

Kari & Jordan, so many feelings and thngs about grief....praying for you. marlene

Anonymous said...

Kari, chin-up....you certainly have a right to grieve, and don't feel guilty about it! Jordan too!

In time, probably quite short as you have already seen it in the blog, you will re-focus on Peyton, and if anyone has a right to "spoil" their child it is you!! Through all of this you have been tremendously UNselfish!!

Whenever you guys are ready to connect, our boys would love to play with Peyton and we would love to spend time with you guys talking about...whatever!!

You're doing great, and that video you posted from the service still gets me!! Joy for Drew, Joy for your future!!

Chin-up!!, Chin-up!!

Love Steve

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful tribute to Drew! What amazing people you are, to endure so much and to still be so positive. Your story has made me reflect on my own life and children. Thank you for reminding me to be thankful for all that I have, all that I take for granted. Not a day goes by that I don't hug my kids and send up and extra prayer for you at the same time.
Thank you for sharing your story and for being honest while you do. The road ahead will not be easy, but, remember how many of us are thinking about you and praying for you. Remember most of all that God is there holding you & Drew!!
Love & Prayers,
Amy Rapp (Hinebauch)

Greg Ashby said...

hey Kari... thanks for continueing to keep us updated. We know that last week was not the end of the experience, but the beginning of a new phase, and it will have its own moments of sorrow and pain as well. I still find myself wishing I could hold him one more time too, so I can't imagine how much you feel that. I really admire you and Jordan and your desire to be thankful for what you do have, and happy for those who still have what you lost. Peyton will benefit tremendously for that. But the feelings of grief are real too, please know that they are OK, and you never have to supress them around us.

Also, I wanted to say thanks for the fridge magnets with Drew's picture... what a great idea! It's on my desk at work and everytime I see it I think of what Jordan said... "Just smile, and be patient". I try, but I can't seem to live up to the standard that Drew could. He taught us a lot.

Love you both.

Dallas said...

That is an absolutely beautiful video! Great job Nicola! I sit here with tears running down my face, not being able to imagine at all how you are feeling. I promise you to parent with knowledge. Thank you for the reminder!

dorinda said...

Kari and Jordan, words are still hard to express...I've been checking to see if the video was there, and yes!! So..., I watched, and cried...and smiled and laughed. My heart continues to go out to all of you and the prayers continue as you walk through each day. Again, thank you for sharing this with us. Your prayer requests will be ours.
love, Dorinda

Brandi said...

Hi Kari!
This is Brandi and I saw your blog for the first time last week thanks to Dorinda and Michele.
I'm sorry to say I didn't know about Drew's story until just recently, but I wanted to be sure to tell you that I've prayed every single day since, for you and your family. I also want you to know that while I can't say I understand your loss, I hope it's a comfort knowing how strong I think you've been and what a smile God must have at your faith. I just watched Drew's video and cried through the entire thing but at the same time sat amazed at seeing your smiles, and the love you all had for your little Drew as well as one another. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the video speaks volumes of how amazing your journey has been, the strength you've shown and the inspiration you are to all of us. God's peace is evident in your words and I'll continue my prayers for you all,and remembering your faithful example.
Your boys are absolutely beautiful.
A hymn we used to sing keeps popping into my head, "No tears in Heaven." ...no tears in heaven, sorrow and pain will all have gone....
As for now, I think Jesus completely understands the tears. Know that you don't cry alone.
Thinking of you,

Anonymous said...

I came across your blog indirectly from another blog - my heart aches for your family. I have prayed for you and your family. Though I never knew your precious little boy he has inspired my to live my life to the fullest. Your courage and faith is amazing. I know that you have a special angel in heavan looking upon you now with a huge smile on his face. When I first read your blog the song "How he loves us" came into my head. I hope that you find comfort and peace in the days to come.

Anonymous said...

Kari... I've lived in Rhode Island and can definitely say you're heart is MUCH bigger. As a first-hand witness to your love for your family and most especially wee Drew, I would say your heart is more like the size of Texas and possibly half of California on top... I don't know how big that makes your hole... but I get the idea.

They say time heals... I pray this is true but right now, I can't imagine it not hurting.

May the love of your family, extended family, brothers and sisters in Christ, friends and the Holy Spirit of God overwhelm you with Love and Comfort and glimmers of Joy over the days, weeks, and months to come. Bit by bit... Kari... bit by bit..

Uncle Jadonka :)

April Jackson said...

I have been thinking and praying for your family. I am walking with Kevin, Landon and others (Laura will be cheering us on!) this weekend at a walk to find a cure for mitochondria...I will be thinking of Drew!

Anonymous said...

Kari & Jordan:
Thank you for sharing such a beautiful, heart touching tribute. You are a beautiful family.
Karen & Rob Cameron

Emily Hougland said...

What a wonderful chronicle of a tiny life with a big impact...your strength has truly amazed me, knowing you as the little girl from long ago and seeing the great woman you've grown into being. You'll be a wonderful Mother for Peyton ever minute of your life - don't doubt that!

Anonymous said...

I, like another anonymous commenter, found your blog through a friends. First of all, I send my deepest condulunces to you and your family; we will be praying for you in your time of grief and heartache. And secondly I want to thank you for reminding me to step back and enjoy my kid's "moments". It's a beautiful story how you were able to spend some time learning your son's favorites today. I think I will do the same tomorrow with my son. May God bless you!

Melinda said...

What a great video of Drew and his journey here with his loving family. And what a wonderful big brother Peyton is! Thanks for sharing your thoughts & feelings. I look forward to hearing how you are doing. Take care.

Anonymous said...

Dear Kari & Jordan,
I found your blog through my sister-in-law Lori Harper who is a friend of Chad Garner. The deepest place in my heart goes out to you & my prayers have gone up to Jesus for you & your family. My family too has gone through a life changing time with our youngest daughter, Ava, being diagnosed with Leukemia at 2 years old. You can try to explain the things you go through, but no one can really comprehend them until they've been there. I understand the helplessness you've probably felt, the endless nights in the hospital (more like "dark hours" b/c they're nothing like what I associate "night" with, ha), and yet the beauty of life while it's here, and so much more.
Ava's path has so far has taken a different turn than Drew's, as she is in remission now, but I feel like from reading your blog that our feelings, fears, and prayers have ran a parallel course in months passed. Please know that not just a stranger, but a sister in Christ is thinking of you, praying for you, appreciating you.
Love to you from Arkansas,
April Wendland

Mark said...

Thank you for sharing with the rest of us. The video, your pain, your insights. It not only allows us to learn for you, but it allows us to "mourn with those who mourn, rejoice with those that rejoice." Thank you for sharing your lives.


Anonymous said...

Thank you Jordan and Kari for letting us share in Drew's tribute last week. I love the video and especially your attitude, perspective and faith. Like you said, take one day at a time as I'm sure you will have your ups and downs.

I love you guys

Anonymous said...

Dearest Kari, Jordan & Peyton. My heart is overwhelmed watching the beautiful tribute for Drew. What a special little one the Lord gave you to love and care for. Thank you for sharing his life with us! Drew is in God's hands now and I'm sure he is smiling down on you thanking you for all the love & care you gave him during his short life. Praying for peace and comfort .... taking one day at time ... you are a very special family.

Love Deb Rosman

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your faith. Thank you for sharing your story. Since I read your story yesterday, I have been parenting intentionally and choosing to not let little daily things get in the way of loving my children. Praying for you, Jordan, Peyton, and Drew today - for comfort from our Father while you walk this journey of grief. Praying for joyful moments. Praying for blessings.

Lisa said...

Wow! That video was beautiful! I found myself overwhelmed with tears. My heart hurts deeply for your family. I pray that God continues to give you such strength, comfort, & guidance throughout this difficult time, also to give you some answers as to what it was that little Drew had.

Krystal said...

I found your blog through your Facebook page and I'm so glad I did. I didn't know Drew's story and as I sit here with tears rolling down my face after watching the video...I'm glad I know his story now. I can't imagine the immense loss you must feel and no words seem appropriate to say. Just know that you and Jordan and Peyton are being lifted up in prayer here in Kansas from a fellow Harding alum.

Krystal (Proctor) Maples

Cherry said...

Jordan & Kari,

I haven't talked or seen you guys since college. I was so sorry to hear about your beautiful little baby Drew. Thank you for sharing your lives with us, your joys and your hurts. We lift you up to the Father for comfort during this time. What little I could tell about your family watching that video is that you lived every moment with him. Thank you for showing us that life is precious and that every moment counts. Bless you guys and as you can tell many are lifting you up to God.

Justin Cherry

Anonymous said...

Dear Kari My heart and mind have been on you lately. I just wanted you to know I send a hug your way today and am thinking about you/Carrie Adair(Micaela's auntie)

Davies Family said...

Kari, Jordan, and Peyton...
I found your blog from your Facebook link and just learned Drew's story. Tears are running down my face, and my heart is breaking for you. Thank you for sharing your story and your beautiful video of Drew. Brett and I will be praying for your sweet family....Stacy

Heather & T.J. said...

My heart is breaking for you and your family as I haven't been able to stop crying as I've been reading your blog and watching that sweet video of your precious baby. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers during your time of sadness. God bless you...

Heather Roberts Schlittler
(In case you can't remember, we were in Delta Gamma Rho together at HU.) :) We're linked in sisterhood, sister!

Anonymous said...


We have never met. I have the privilege of knowing Kevin for the past few years as he acted as our realtor and friend, and on the weekend had the privilege of also meeting Patti. Bryce, my husband worked with Jordan at Tri-Ocean a few years ago.
I want to tell you, as a woman and a mom, that I find your strength to be awe inspiring. I don't think I would be functioning as well as you. I hope that you can see the inspiration in your self as those around you are seeing it. And remembering to take care of you.
I also want to tell you something that has come to us from knowing of your heartbreaking loss. You have inspired my family to be more - caring, loving, tollerant, accepting, patient, and on. We look at each other and daily activities a little differently. EVERYTHING is a blessing. Greyson, my son, having a bad day is a blessing. And as Jordan said at the service, we smile and are patient. I know that it is hard to see at times, but your short time with Drew is a blessing. He will forever be in your heart, your husbands, your family, and now even with strangers. We have his picture on our fridge along with myriad others, and there it will stay. It is among the special people in this world and in ours whom we think of daily, and to whom Greyson gives kisses to. I hope that you continue to have strength and find the small joys, In times past, those of today and those to come.
Our thoughts continue to be with you and your family
Liz Dearborn (and Bryce and Greyson)