Wednesday, March 31, 2010

my dear devon...

we went for a walk the other day. i happen to live on the same street now that Devon did when she passed away. we pass her old house often on our walks and i try to remember the happy times there...not the chemo times. the parties she loved to throw...the girls nights...the just stopping by and saying hi and her always being so excited...the trashy TV nights....girl loved her some trash TV :) i tell my boys - "thats where Devon lived - do you remember her Bryson?" he always says yes :)
i still miss her incredibly. it hurts that i will never see my friend again. i have been crying...a lot.
i think i have been thinking of her so much lately because 3 years ago around this time she was forced by a co-worker to go to the ER because she had been having head-aches and had become dizzy. what she thought was maybe just stress turned out to be a "weird mass" and then a possible cyst and them a benign tumor and then a JPA tumor and then the most aggressive brain cancer there is...it, of course was always the cancer - it just took her Kaiser doctors a few wrong guesses and several botched biopsies to know it...around this time she had her first brain surgery. she was so scared. so scared. i had never seen devon scared of anything and when i stopped by the hospital before she went into surgery to drop off a Bible (at her request) i could see the fear in her eyes and they started to water and i sat on her bed and held her hand and she just looked at me and cried. an you know what i told her? i'll never forget. "you're gunna be okay devon...you're gunna be fine. everything is going to be fine." i tried to be positive the entire time...i couldnt let myself believe that devon wouldnt be okay. i couldnt accept it until she told me it was glioma.
what else prompts this post is that i recently heard an interview on NPR about the internet and what happens when someone dies and their on-line content. it was an interesting discussion. They were talking about when to take it down - do you take it down? i can't seem to erase her phone number from my phone - her address from my contacts - her blog from my reader - her email from my group lists (it always bounces back, but sometimes i like to think she reads all her email in heaven) i visit her blog often - she didnt start keeping it until after she was diagnosed with cancer, but it brings me comfort and it makes me laugh and it feels like she is still around in a small way.
a friend was also saying that a lot of people turn facebook profiles of people who have passed into memorial sites. i am kind of a fan of this on-line memorializing. i think it makes the grieving process so much more communal and ongoing...because it is...here i am a year and a half after she passed away still crying and yearning for her.
any thoughts on this either way?

4 comments:

Whitney Hannah Hill said...

I think it's really wonderful that you continue to remember, memorialize and write about Devon. It is a tribute to her and her life -- it is therapeutic and allows you to heal -- and we get to meet and know her in the process. I don't think anything should be done with profiles, sites, blogs after people pass away. This internet is today's newspaper - there should be archives - always. We don't burn old newspapers...we turn them into microfiche, etc. I'm sorry you are hurting - death is really hard. REALLY hard. Putting words to the experience helps and will resonate with anyone going through the same thing.

Kaci Lundgren said...

I walked past Devon's house with you...I love how you are willing to think about these things and not just brush them aside. A lady who was dearly loved at our church (and the mother of a bunch of friends there) died 2 years ago and her profile keeps coming up on Facebook. I went on it the other day and was surprised by the messages I saw to her...funny and sweet (like her son telling her that he got straight A's in college or her friend asking her for advice on sewing). I think it is a good reminder of the person and it helps to remember that their loved ones are still grieving. I like how you said you were positive with her when she was so scared...that's all you can do at a time like that. There's a Sara Groves song that is so simple yet so profound, and the words are basically "It's gonna be alright" and it gets me every time...thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Rashelle said...

Today marks the year anniversary of the death of a dear family friend named Claire. He passed away two days after Delia was born. It was difficult experiencing the complete joy of a new life alongside the loss of someone special. Whenever I find myself grieving for Claire I remember that their are others who loved him more and are grieving harder than I am and that they need my prayers of comfort. These prayers comfort me as well. I'm praying them for you today...

Anonymous said...

I sure don't have a lot of experience with this but what I would say to you, Carlee, is do what you feel like. I think the main thing is that you keep feeling, and however that manifests itself is great. Don't push away whatever you feel like feeling (reading her blog, for example, or whatever it is) just because it may seem weird or inappropriate to other people. We all express our grief in different ways, and the point is that you express yours exactly when and where and how you feel led to. All the details aren't the point - the point is that you are remembering and grieving and even celebrating.

Thanks for sharing.
-Rachel