Showing posts from April, 2012


It has been a few weeks since I received the call from my sister. I could tell right away it was bad news. You could hear the defeat in her voice. You could feel the grief welling up inside her little body spilling through the phone. That kind of sadness tastes metallic. She had confided a couple weeks earlier of her fears and I had responded with hope. You always respond with hope. In our family, it's hope mixed with a little gallows humor. "Kid's got a little hole in the heart...hey at least it's not brain cancer." I really thought we had this one. We wouldn't lose again. She wouldn't lose again. All the hope and all the humor couldn't stop that call. I think of a lot different things in retrospect. My father spending nights watching Elmo stroking her hand as she sleeps. My brother, ever the river marshall, making everyone comfortable, entertaining visitors before he would start his shift. My sister reveling at her daughter's spunk with her…


Eli finally sleeps in his bouncy seat to my right.His cold makes every breath tight and charged with static. Each breath takes too much effort. Each breath is work. ---
We have all been holding our breaths for Stella. We have held them for nearly six months. We have kept our lungs filled with hope.
Pray, don't breathe. There was no room for air, only miracles. We curled our fingers into fists of fury, raging at disease.
We had no time to breathe deep. We held our breaths for miracles.
Maybe a Thanksgiving day parade of cures. Maybe a Christmas gift of healing. Maybe a birthday present for everyone.
We held our breaths. And now we are breathless. Their star was stolen from the sky. The breath snatched right from our throats. Taken.
--- Time for Eli's next dose. The medicine relaxes the grip on his lungs. He can sleep. He can now breathe deep. Harder for us. Grief does not loosen its grip. Each breath is work.

Stella Rose

Our hearts are breaking. Please lift up Stella in your hearts. May she feel no pain and only our love surrounding her.