Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Cancer, a perspective changer.

Cancer is a perspective changer. If you can get past the oppressive nature of the grief and make room for it in your day to day life, then you can get to a place where you start to see not just the bad, but the total experience of what living through that trauma does to you, the wisdom it provides.

I used to work at the Springs of Missoula in the Alzheimer's unit. I met a few lifetime friends there. Amanda Nichols is one. We've now been friends since 2006. She's been supportive and especially helpful with the foundation when needed.  Your awesome Amanda and Nick!   I would say this job was probably one of the hardest, funniest, yet hilarious job there is. Colten was only 9 months
old when I started working there. This was my first "real life" job as nurse. I had earned my LPN license and was still in school working towards my RN license. I received lots and lots and lots of unsolicited advice from very well meaning older ladies who often told me the same thing, "Enjoy it -- it passes so quickly." Those words used to annoy me to no end. But you know what? It's true. Those gals in their old, senile age knew what they were talking about. Our children's childhood's do pass quickly. Enjoy it. Work hard to find the beauty in each stage of your child's life. When you're washing the jam or baby food that went flying off your face, know that someday you will pine for that unsolicited sticky kiss of a child. When you're cleaning the crumbs from the car seat, know that one day they will be driving away from you. When you're in the midst of whatever battle royale you find yourself in, know that every
moment is a gift, even the unbearable and unimaginable ones. I've said this a lot, and I've even been ripped to shreds with friends over this exact saying.

Some people do not take things to heart until they see first-hand the destruction disease and death can cause, the pain that it brings and the overwhelming empty feeling your heart has after the loss of a child. No one knows this pain unless they've experienced it first-hand. No one knows what it's like to bathe your lifeless baby's body after he's taken his last breath of life and to hold him like it was literally the last time while his little body slowly stiffens as you say goodbye until you see them again in the afterlife. Love your healthy children like the miracle that they are.
There is so much wisdom I have gained from my sweet Cashy's life and death.
Every day I try and remember what he's taught me. Hardest thing of all is
thinking about what our healthy 8 year old and 1 year old are teaching us.
What lessons can we learn from them? Each kid is unique and has something to
offer. Look for the lessons and opportunities to learn. They are there, but
we don't always notice them. Every day as I watch little Sissy grow and
learn, I'm amazed with how much she reminds me of her big brother and how
lucky we are to have the three children that we have and had. Nothing is a greater gift in life than holding your baby in your arms and looking into their soul through their beautiful eyes. So innocent, so pure, so amazing.

The hardest thing I have ever done in this life (at least I'd like to hope) is over. It's true. I honestly believe that the hardest thing I will ever do in my life is to say goodbye to my child, knowing that his last breath was taken in Daddy's arms with me close by. Will anything ever match the feeling in my heart as they lowered my brave boy's body into the deep dark ground? I don't think so. Everything else related to my mothering is a privilege. Everything. I try and remember that every day.

How do you share the good without bringing up the bad? I often struggle with the boundary line of talking about my sweet boy, who I of course want to
share with his story with the world, but when is that line crossed? Do I dare even mention he's gone and an Angel of God? I'm usually pretty good at judging whether to delve into it or to leave it as it is.

Sometimes I wonder if I prayed hard enough, if maybe I spent more time alone
praying for Cashy's miracle, (don't get me wrong, I prayed for his complete
healing every chance I got), but maybe if I was praying for God to give you that
3rd and 4th chance you so desperately needed, maybe things would be
different. Maybe if I had been baptized Catholic like everyone else has,
maybe he'd still be here? Were Mike and I the only ones who didn't think he was going to die? Did we just have so much hope and belief that he would make it through? Or were we that oblivious to see what was transpiring in front of our very own eyes? That we were losing our sweet boy to cancer...God I'd give anything to have him back in my bed, in my arms, snuggling and holding my hand in his, kissing his baby sis and saying with a
smile and tilted head, "ahhh." He was so proud of his baby sister; I know
he is still, as she carries parts of Cashy in her. Today she made me turn
my head and double take for a minute, when she loudly went, "YAY!!!," and
put her arms in the air, she sounded just like my Cash man, it was seriously
his sweet voice transcribed through her. It made me smile and want to cry
at the same time.

This blog post was really long and unfinished so rather than waiting to post what I have till I'm finished, I'm going to post in a couple separate posts.  So stayed tuned for part 2!! Thanks again everyone who follows and reads my blogs.  I never would of thought writing my thoughts could be so soothing to my soul, but it is and that's why I continue to do it.  If I offend anyone in the process, I'm sorry, its not my intention, I love everyone and everything!   One Love!


  1. I can't even pretend to grasp the raw emotions you & your family live with daily. My heart & prayers have been with you all since I first heard of brave Cashy. I applaud the work you are doing in his name & for educating people of safer alternatives. I love that you have a blog like this, I can imagine it's cathartic also you are helping so many others. One Love

  2. Amazing post. Thanks to your posts, my son is loved more. I appreciate him more, and not taking him for granted. You have thought me lessons through one blog post, that I couldn't have learned anywhere else. You thought me how to be a better mom and how to appreciate the little things in life that truly matter.

  3. Thank you both for your genuine comments. One Love from the Hyde's. Thanks for supporting the Cashy Hyde Foundation!