My arms are empty and acheing...

I can’t believe I’m a mother without…

Life has been twisted and turned upside down. As a mother, I had both the wonderful privilege of holding my sweet son as I brought him into this world…and the horrible chore of holding him as he took his last breaths and left this world, at only 7 years old. June 24, 2010 he earned his angel wings, passing away after an inspiring but brief fight against Cystic Fibrosis. Now I live, solely focusing on living a life to get to be with him again in heaven, and to raise awareness for Cystic Fibrosis research. I am dedicated to a cure, not only for my sweet sons legacy but so that other CF families never experience the greatest loss of their lives that we are now facing. My mother’s arms are missing Connerman, yet he still inspires me daily to leave a mark of LOVE on this world…so for you my sweet prince, mommy will try!

Love Love Love

Always Always Always

Monday, October 17, 2011


Sunday was the big day.

13.1 miles in the Girlfriends Half Marathon.

It was my goal for this year after losing Conner. Running has been my sanity and outlet for the better part since his passing…finding different routes, offroad and in the very early hours of the morning. I love to do the walks for Cystic Fibrosis each May, but if I’m honest (which I should be here) I will admit that I’m needing a big deep breath away from CF functions. I love to stay involved in whats new with my CF families that we adore, but as far as the advances in research, the big events…I need to step away. and being that our CF walk is only 3 miles I figured I’d need a bigger goal for this year. so in january I decided to do a half marathon this year.

in the beginning I trained hard. erin and I ran 3-4 times a week, averaging 20 miles a week and felt great. this summer however…we both had vacations, trainings and travel, so running took a backseat! then school started and inevitably I came down with the junk my kiddos brought home from school, so running was pushed even farther aside….

suddenly I woke up and I had ONE week til the race…that’s right…ONE WEEK! and I hadn’t run in probably close to 6 weeks! I was freaked out! With the race approaching on Sunday, Erin and I ran 5 miles on Monday, I did Zumba on Tuesday then Sarah and I ran a quick 2 miles on Thursday then rested til sunday.

so sunday morning, Sarah her sister Amy, and I sat at the start line…I could not believe I was about to actually run a half marathon…with NO TRAINING! the 5 miles I ran earlier in the week was ok, but not great…and I felt like I was coming down with another cold saturday night…pretty much the odds were not in my favor.

but the sign that was hanging on the Start line was perfect…and set the tone for the entire run!


(the woman who starts the race, is not the same woman who finishes the race)

I will spare the details…but I finished! my legs were DONE, but they (and conner) carried me thru to the finish line. And the best part was coming around the end corner to the finish line and seeing my boys right there waiting for me!


I’m glad I completed my goal. I’m glad I’m still able to walk! But mostly I’m glad that I had some amazing women by my side who gave me the best support without even knowing it,


and my boys being there to raise my spirits when I needed it most…


so HA! take that CF…


Some ran for cancer, some for bragging rights, for Sarah and Amy it was for Blake…but for me, it wasn’t just to show CF whose boss…it was for my Connerman…I’m proud to say that I finished for you, dear Conner. Mommy misses you terribly…I hope you know just how much I love you!



love love love

Monday, October 10, 2011

The valley…

There are so many days where I still can’t believe all that has happened. its like a flash back into the old me, the me I used to be. you know the one who took days for granted and believed that time would stand still for our sweet son. I believed in a cure for him. I believed Denver would take him, or that I could convince that dang drug company to get him on a drug trial that could save his life. the days where it was still normal to take a minimum 50 minutes each morning of therapies and IV’s and medications just to get out the door. The days where it was literally impossible to get out of bed and just head out to tackle the day…Conner wouldn’t be able to breathe in that old life. and now there are days that I can’t breathe peace into our day. my day. I think I’m reminded of the pain daily because there are so many suffering right now. so many losses, not just in the CF community, but in life in general it seems. So many sick struggling to breathe, sisters watching their sisters pass away…sons watching their dads dyeing and on and on. it’s heartbreaking.

the change in weather has affected me as well. the constant gloom and rain remind me of last fall. my first fall without him. the first time heading into the holidays full of sorrow instead of anticipation. I can hardly believe that the holiday’s are upon us again. I’m not sure how we’ll spend them this year…we are thankful for all that God has blessed our family with and the love He continues to show our family…so thanksgiving may not be so bad this year…I am so thankful for being chosen to be Conner’s mother. Yet in the same breath I’m hurt how fast it flew by. moments don’t last forever. memories fade after time. I don’t remember some of the most important things about him. how it sounded to hear him breathe…that horrible CF cough that was a staple in our home I’ve grown to miss because it was part of him, I forgot how he smelled, how soft his hands were, just how dark his birthmark on his leg was, or even which leg it was on. I forgot the feel of his soft tummy he used to let me snuggle up to, I’ve forgotten the smell of his breath and the warmth of his embrace. I forgot just how he sounded when he told me he loved me. it’s only been 16 months and there is so much of him gone…so far away it seems.


what hurts is the ups and downs of grief. it’s constantly changing and gives NO warning. one moment life is going good…I smile more, I love more and reach out more…then the next moment it’s gone and replaced with sadness. I’ve gotten used to living with the pain each day…his memory is still the most common thing on my brain, but for the most part it doesn’t make me weepy. well I’m in one of those weepy lulls. so much has changed in our home, in our lives and he’s not here to be a part of it. I’m not bitter nor am I angry…I just get sad. I’ve learned to go with the ebb and flow of grief. and just let it come. but sometimes it makes me feel inadequate. because just when I feel I’ve taken a tiny step forward I’m shoved back down and forced to feel the intense pain all over again. I wish it was predictable. but there are parts of my life where I’ve taken a leadership position since his passing, or stepped forward to help in some way or another, and when I’m shoved back down from the pain I feel like I’m worthless to others. like how can I be there and be strong for others I’ve committed to if I in my valley? I know I will again climb out of that valley when I’ve spent my time in the depths and I will be stronger on the other side of each valley…but while I’m in the valley…I feel fake. un-genuine. lonely. superficial. alone. I just fake it til I make it thru. but all I really wanna do is curl up and just shut the door to the world and be alone in my pain. it overtakes me when it comes. I can’t focus. It becomes hard to do regular every day chores again…cooking becomes a HUGE mountain to be climbed…I can’t do it. laundry piles up and dishes sit in the sink…and I just feel I can’t do life well. because it’s not just pain or sorrow. it’s physical pain too. my body hurts my head pounds, I’m exhausted and can’t remember anything unless I write it down. it literally is like he just died.


and I have to sit in that valley and pray my way out of that valley when I’ve seen or heard or learned what He needs me to learn in that valley, so I can come out the other side of it better. closer. fuller. but in the valley it’s dark and scary…and I don’t know what He will ask me to do. My first valley I had to build walls around the 4 of us and redefine friendships and really start life over in a way. nothing was how it was before. it was a new beginning. that was a hard valley to walk out of. I sat in it for a long while. so in this valley what will I be adding to my life, or ridding from my life? will it be easy or difficult? there’s just no way of knowing without surrendering and walking into it…and praying my way out of it when I’m ready.

it’s necessary. the molding. maybe that’s what He was trying to do with me all along, long before Conner’s health started declining. but I didn’t listen because I was too busy to listen. red flag after red flag I would ignore and never feel good about myself. always a void. always something missing. it was always Him. but now I surrender to the lessons. I know that when the days become too much to bear and I feel weepy that another valley is coming…and I have to chose to push it away for awhile or to tackle it head on. it’s not an easy decision. because choosing the pain and the molding, is a total surrender. it’s being ok with the lack of motivation or energy and focusing on what I’m learning in my devotional time, prayer time and quiet time. and not rushing it. it’s like a storm. you never know when it’s going to come until it’s upon you. you see signs and signals…but not too long before. then you must take cover, or protect yourself from the elements. to seek shelter so it doesn’t destroy you. spend quality time indoors and be ready when the storm clears to walk outside and enjoy life again and fix what’s been broken and move forward. stronger.


and I’ll be honest…

sometimes I don’t wanna move forward. every step forward is one away from the old me…the life I used to live. and it feels like a step away from what was with Conner. I realize it’s also a step towards the promised forever with him…but right now, here on earth…in my heart it just feels so far away. it feels like forever since he gave me a hug while laying on my lap…


it feels like forever since we’d sit in that hospital together fighting to save his lungs from damage…fighting to save his life…


feels like forever since we celebrated his last birthday with the Fire Dept and friends with red balloons…


it just feels like forever since I was worried about losing him. I remember being so afraid and so hurt and so scared and unsure. I just never believed it’d be real so soon. I fought hard. he fought harder. and in the end it wasn’t enough. it was his time. and now it’s my time to figure out what in the world to do with myself…without him…

a mother in that dreaded valley once again…



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