cancer, family, healing, kids, parenting, society


The words have been spoken…..My Mama P is gone….I am certain that she has made her way “home”, which is were she said she wanted to go, starting a couple of weeks ago.

I have been anxiously awaiting those words for a good week now. I was checking my phone constantly, and every time I heard it ding, my stomach would drop into my lower intestines.

I hated to know that she was having difficulty breathing, and knowing what pain she was having towards the end. As much as I wanted her to have peace, I was having a very hard time letting her go.

I didnt want to hear the words that told me that she would never grace my life with her presence again. I knew that when I heard these words, that I would never be able run along side her physically again, and I would never again hear her voice on the other end of my call. She wouldn't be making me one more scarf or quilt. She wouldn't be able to embrace me when I landed at the airport, or when I entered her home. She wouldn't be making pancakes and cookies with my children anymore, and she would never be able to laugh with me over a glass of wine again.

On this past Saturday, I thought for sure I would hear that she had gone. I was a mess at work, and I couldn't get myself together. A very good friend of mine volunteered to come in to work early for me, so that I could join my family, that lives close by. This turned out to be the exact comfort I needed.

My family has always been very close, but my siblings and I share a bond like no other…this started very early on in our lives. I have never seen anything even closely resembling what we have, and I feel so lucky to have been given such a gift.

I have thanked so many people during this process, and continue to be thankful for those who continue to be supportive and caring, but I purposely saved the thank you's for my family last…..

As my family and I headed to my brothers house on Saturday, I was full of anxiety and sadness… Both of my brothers and their families planned to meet there. I needed desperately to be around other like minded people, that love this woman as much as I do. I needed comforted…..something I had not been able to find thus far.

The only problem with this, is that none of us are good public grievers. We all like to grieve in our own different ways, but always privately. We all consider ourselves to be the tough rock, for the next person. However, if one of us sees another crying, we will break down in seconds. I sometimes believe that I share a heart with every one of my siblings. We can not stand to see one another hurt. My tears are for them, as theirs are for me.

We cried solidly off and on, throughout Saturday. My mom brought us dinner, and cried with us too, as she can't not stand to see us hurting either. We listened to sappy music, and looked through pictures of us with Patty….both in our youth and as adults. We cried again…….and then we laughed!

We all were blessed with such a wonderful family. Patty came into our lives at a young age, and we were lucky enough to have two mothers who love us unconditionally. We shared time and a love with this woman, that many “step children” never get to experience, because she never considered us that….she always just called us her kids. We all think of her exactly the same……She is, and always will be our mother.

We were all lucky to each get to share moments with her at the end of her life, and we all had a chance to say goodbye to her in person. We all can recognize the glory we've been given amidst the pain, and we feel lucky to have witnessed all the amazing things that we have been offered….. all throughout this long, yet short journey. So, this is when I say thank you to my family for being so caring and wonderful, and for understanding one another so well, when sometimes words are unable to be spoken. You are my heart and soul, and I love you dearly!

Back when Patty got her first diagnosis, and then multiple diagnoses thereafter, she would always say “Don't worry, God and I have a plan”! She never told us what the plan was, and I guess we just always assumed that she meant he would heal her physically. I'm starting to believe however, that we have already started to see the plan unfolding, as we have witnesses healing of so many people through tear filled eyes. This was one amazing lady, who will remain in our hearts forever!

Last night, while on the phone with my aunt, I was told that she was gone. My response surprised even my own self. I felt an overwhelming sense of peace…..for her and for me! It seemed ridiculous, but I could feel her with me already. She was in my heart, and all around me. I was so glad she found her peace, and that my heart was filled with love, instead of anger.

While I am so sad to have to watch the the final chapter close in her own life, I look forward to seeing the chapters of other people's lives go on….the lives of all she's touched:)



26 thoughts on “GONE…BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN…..

  1. Big hugs Tia. My condolences to you, your dad and your family. Your posts have allowed us to share your love for her and have helped us get a sense of the fantastic person she was. It is good to know she is at peace at last. The final days can be so difficult. Mind yourself, and I hope you continue to feel her presence all around you.

  2. TartanJogger says:

    I’m so sorry to hear of your loss and sadness; you now have a very important angel looking after you all. Big hugs.

  3. My sincere condolences. While I don’t know Patty well, I feel that she is finally home and at peace. And I’m sure she wants nothing but for you to have a fulfilling time in this life too.

  4. Bonnie Van Winkle says:

    I have followed your journey with Patty, through your posts, and Jenny’s. I know that she was well-loved, and she loved well! Your words are such a tribute to her! God bless, and comfort you all.

  5. Tia,
    I apologize for my late comments to you on this difficult time in your life. I thought about you and your Mama P this evening as i was driving home, and thought i would check in to see how things were going.

    While I am very sorry for your loss I am inspired by your attitude, and the strength that you have exhibited and continue even now. I might have mentioned that my mother-in-law suffers from brain cancer and continually expresses and interest in dying. It is so hard to watch this but I feel that hearing of your struggle and pain, and the way you have dealt with it will aide me not only in my own recovery, but to comfort the sons, daughters, grandchildren, and husband that she will leave behind.

    Tia i read many blogs, written by many gifted and talented writers, but i can honestly tell you that yours is the only one that i believe has had an impact on my life. My life will be better having read your words. I am so inspired to know you today. I am thrilled that we have become friends and I want you to know that what you do on your computer late at night when the kids go to sleep really does matter. I dont read as much as i would like to but when i do i always check yours first.

    Thank You Tia for the help you have been to me.

    Your friend
    Tom Nardone

    • I think I may be blushing due to your flattery:). Thank you for saying such kind words. I know you have been watching our mother in law go through her struggles with cancer. My heart ones out to you, because it it at times heart wrenching to watch. However, there are ALOT of good moments too, that you need to watch for. It makes me happy if you get some sort of comfort out of these words…. I know it’s helping me heal to write them. Thank you for following along on this journey, and for just being my friend. 🙂

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