Monday, 1 September 2014

Ten years

Time will never erase the memories of her brief life. Days turned to weeks, weeks to
[ten] years. I hold on to her memory because if I forget then it will be as if she was never here.
As time goes by, the tears may roll less often, but each one still feels the same love and loss. Our baby Charlotte is loved, cherished and missed.

Remembering our Angel ~ Charlotte Rose ~ born still 1st September 2004 and all my special friends who have known the grief of losing a baby.

Grief : it's something Ive absorbed into my life , I know it has changed me as a person. My whole life in fact. My whole circle of friends. An online and real community of compassion - some became real life friends as dear as any I have known for years.

How did I cope ?

One moment, one day at a time.

Find a good psychologist or counsellor, (or good friends) talk about him/her with your spouse/partner and anyone who'll listen, allow yourselves to cry and cry and cry for however long it takes, get to understand the stages of grief (one step forward, two steps backward), give each other the space and time you both need to grieve as individuals.

Journal your feelings, write your child a letter, create an album for her, plant a tree,join an online community spend time with people who have walked the same paths ...the best advice someone gave me was to cry whenever I felt like crying. Don't stop yourself from doing this.

What Charlotte would look like now I will never know. I don't show it but it is there - a little despair at the fact my only daughter died. I doubt a day will pass me by that I won't mourn the day she died. Don't worry - I have 'moved on'. I rarely cry , though my heart is still broken and beyond repair , I carry it more easily now.

At the same time I wonder if Sam & Joel would be here if Charlotte had lived. Did she leave left to prepare the way for them. They'll never replace Charlotte but they are my sunshine and I can't imagine a life without them.


Thursday, 28 August 2014

Dear Blank Please Blank

If procrastination was an art I'd be a [unpaid] professional. I was scrolling through my old Facebook timeline to find an article on "how to help someone with Breast cancer". An acquaintance told me her friend was newly diagnosed and she wanted my advice. I was honestly trying to be helpful ...

I didn't find it but I came across a link to this little exchange.

Dear Duck,
 My advice? Do not cross the road, you will never hear the end of it... 
Sincerely, Chicken

Then this
 And this

Dear Blank .....
Please Blank....
are truly bizarre, random and WT ?
The comments attached are hilarious , except for the stupid village idiot and trolls. A few sad ones too.

Me ...

Dear Accountant
It was all Dear Blank Please Blank's fault

 signed - My Tax return is still not finished.
Dear Sons

Please come when I call you or I'm changing your names to Chocolate and Ice-Cream...

Signed Mum - At least then you would hear me! and come when I call you

Ok let's waste a bit more time - tell me your DBPB or pick a favourite from their website.

Dear Blank ...... Please Blank .....

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Wordless Wednesday :There is nothing like Big Boys' Toys

Vintage Truck and Tractor show ...included everything with wheels.


The BIG question is - Do we move our old tractor - the other farm is being sold ?

We dragged it 2kms from middle of the scrub in 2008.

The boys & cousins have been playing on it since 2008.
'Aussie Wordless Wednesday'
Please add your WW link , leave a comment and visit others on the linky love chain or at least in your line.


Friday, 22 August 2014

Colours of Courage

Daffodil Day  is a day all Australians unite and lend their support to the fight against cancer.It is the largest fundraising event of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.

One in two Australians will be diagnosed with cancer by 85, there’s every chance your life will be affected. No matter who you are, Daffodil Day is for everyone.

August 26th is 9th Anniversary since I lost my Dad (63) to side effects of Leukemia ...a blood cancer. August 9th was 3yrs since my Aunt Rosie (62) passed away Lung cancer.

The Daffodil Garden

1. Beginnings. . ., 2. Daffodils., 3. daffodils in window, 4. Shine on you crazy diamond, 5. a moment of joy, 6. 03Apr18 Daffs, 7. Daffodils in Skagit Valley, 8. Daffodils, 9. Early Narcissu

This year my family (and hopefully a few more friends will join)  have created a team for the Relay for Life.

Our team is Colours of Courage - to represent all the different colours of cancer. In my immediate and extended family - we have had Leukemia, Brain, Breast, Head , Prostrate, Sarcoma, Ovarian and Lung Cancer.

I have had friends that lost their lives or a loved one to Pancreatic Cancer , Lymphoma, Leimosarcoma, Liver Cancer and Melanoma.

I have friends that have /are been treated with various Sarcoma, Thyroid cancer and Stomach and Bone cancers (secondary to Breast cancer).

The theme this year is Race for the cure .

My hope is for better treatments, hope for more survivors and hope for a cancer-free future. Help us beat cancer.

 Your support will make a difference for cancer patients and their families all over Australia.

$5 can help us give a newly diagnosed cancer patient important support and information resources to help them through their cancer journey.

$10 can help offer free exercise programs to help cancer patients build strength and fitness during and after treatment.

$25 can help transport cancer patients to and from hospital for treatment.

$50 can help the Cancer Council Helpline 13 11 20 provide free and confidential information and support on all aspects of cancer.

$100 can help provide free accommodation to cancer patients, their families and carers during treatment.

$500 can help fund ground-breaking research into new and better ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer.
On Daffodil Day please make a donation *hint* like my team or buy a badge, pen, bear or balls .

 Brighten your day or a friend's by buying some daffodils & wear something yellow  :)

Sponsor us here COLOURS OF COURAGE  $5, $10 everything counts. 

They will send you a tax deductible receipt.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Mesothelioma - takes your breath away.

I am often asked to share cancer and medical stories. It's information sharing and part of being in a community. This story about mesothelioma really touched me and the message may be life saving.

Cameron Von St James emailed me this week. 

Heather Von St James.

Three months after welcoming her beautiful daughter Lily into the world, Heather was given 15 months to live. The removal of her left lung and multiple treatments saved her life, and 8 years later, she has beat the odds. Heather is one of the very few survivors of this cancer and her family has dedicated their lives to spreading awareness of it to keep other families safe. 

The Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance has dedicated a significant amount of time making the best resource for those who want to learn more about or are affected by mesothelioma.

They hope that with a successful campaign they can bring awareness to this completely preventable disease.  Though if you have already been exposed - ensure you seek information from your health professional.

Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer affecting the membrane lining of the lungs and abdomen. Malignant mesothelioma is the most serious of all asbestos-related diseases. The primary cause and risk factor for mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos.

I clearly remember about 12 years ago my father's friend writing to him to advise him and other colleagues to go get checked for Mesothelioma , as he had just been diagnosed and had a poor prognosis. They had worked together in an industry that used asbestos.

My husband alleges he had some exposure to asbestos playing in broken 'mounds' of it as a young child near his father's business and probably as a tradesman. Unaware of the dangers. Scary, scary stuff.

Australia was one of the highest users per capita in the world up until the mid-1980s. Approximately one third of all homes built in Australia contain asbestos products. The widespread use of asbestos has left a deadly legacy of asbestos material.

Who hasn't heard of Bernie Banton ?

...takes your breath away!

In Australia ,The Bernie Banton Foundation is about asbestos awareness, education and advocacy. It is an Australian not-for-profit organisation that aims to make a difference by helping to alleviate exposure to asbestos, in the hope of eventual eradication of asbestos related disease!

Additionally , they offer support and comfort to sufferers and their loved ones.  More info on treatment

More info here

I'm curious have you heard of Mesothelioma ?


Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Wordless Wednesday : A stitch in time

A quilt will warm your body and comfort your soul. ~Author Unknown

Dubbo Vintage Machinery and Truck show - Quilt exhibition for the ladies ;)

So much love and talent for their craft.

Dozens of quilts - hours upon hours of stitching, painting and piecing together memories.

An InLinkz Link-up

I wish I could sew a quilt day maybe I'll have the patience.
Are you a quilter ?

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Handle with care - domestic violence behind closed doors ?

Would you stop to help someone involved in a domestic on a lonely country road ?

Today, as I drove home from shopping in town, I noticed a well dressed lady walking - clearly not for leisure or exercise - with her hand bag and a car following slowly . I passed them with caution and pulled into the driveway of a nearby farm [gate] up the road.

I thought I saw the lady hurl herself and handbag at the car in the middle of road. The car turned and drove off . After it passed me, I went to check she was ok and offered to drive her somewhere. (It was 17km walk into town along country road and not particularly safe anytime , especially once you got to the highway). I was 3km from home.

She jumped in without hesitation (I must look safe) maybe she was scared ? relieved?. She was a bit teary , said she was in a mess but ok. He had told her to get out of the car , so she did. "To stand up for myself !"

She wanted to go to the local train / bus station and travel 750kms far west (from her partner) to her sister. She had recently lost her Mum (Diagnosed with Cancer and passed away within 6 weeks) , was grieving and had some issues with partner over her Mum's death and being away.  She chatted on the 15min trip back into town, mostly I listened. She told me her name and a bit about what was happening and wanting to stand up for herself and said she probably did /said the wrong thing too - made him angry and frustrated.

By the time we got to town , she had changed her mind. I think she would have lucked out on the bus /train anyway [I checked it is a 2 day trip - and she would have to go to Sydney first.]

She asked that I drop her at the Bank (because she had thrown the credit card at him as he'd demanded it back - what I saw when I thought she was throwing something at the car) and said she might have a bite to eat and think things over.

I did offer her a safe place if needed ; she told me where she lives. She didn't say she was in any danger and she was happy to leave her two children ( < 5yrs) with him (they were at preschool)

Why did I stop - because last night I finished Liane Moriarty's (a review for another day)


One of the themes Liane's book plugs into is domestic violence.

The Lady was literally describing her behaviour like the character in the book.

Mind you , I was so focused on the lady I couldn't tell you the colour or make of the car , only that is was a 4WD. I didn't see the man. I'd make a pathetic witness...

Who knows what goes on behind closed suburban doors or bushy farm gates or right in the middle of country back road ?

In a few days, I am wondering if I should drop a card in her letter box (She lives on a property, not in suburbia) so I doubt I could drive by and see her out and about.

It's still bugging me - what would you do ?