On the outside most people would look at me and think that I'm carrying on quite well. Not knowing what "normal" is in these circumstances, I'm not sure if they're right or wrong. My moods shift quickly from extreme anger at what Max went through and our loss, and his loss, due to a too-early death, to deep sadness at the pain, terror, isolation and exclusion he must have felt at times, to bursts of productive and creative energy where I actually get things done that help me to deal emotionally with the anger and sadness (you might notice that range of emotions in this post, in fact).
We continue to be amazed at the outpouring of goodwill and good deeds which come to us through the kindness of both friends (old and new) and strangers.
Erika Jessop is a wonderful artist whom we've never met. Commissioned as a gift from Max's photographer Deb, she painted for us (below) this wonderful, caring portrait of him in her inimitable style. Thank you Deb, thank you Erika, we have not yet found a place to hang this picture but it will be in a very important location, to be sure!
Life goes on for us. In an upcoming post, I'll update on what I've been doing to continue the fight against neuroblastoma. I think Max would approve, and it keeps me from going crazy.
We spent Thanksgiving away from our house this year. We host Thanksgiving usually, but decided we needed a pass on tradition, so we joined Melissa's family at Matt and Jenee's desert house outside of Yuma. The weather was beautiful and the kids had a blast with their cousins. Little Nicky is growing into quite a little man which of course is bittersweet. He is just about now at the age when Max was diagnosed. He misses his brother a lot - we all do of course - and asks the most touchingly sad questions, such as today when he asked, "when is Max coming back?" as if he's in heaven on vacation. We try as much as possible to get the idea of permanence across but also speak freely of Max and 'signs' from him which the kids especially find comforting. We strive to find positive things to focus on everyday and are thankful we have two beautiful, healthy children, along with our families, a community, and a network of friends that support us with their love and friendship.
Nic looking very comfortable on a mini-bike.
Hannah pulling g's
Nic getting inspired to face off against Will Lacey at some NASCAR track in the future.