The Blaines

The Blaines
For more information about current fundraisers and walks, please click on the picture!

Buggin' For a Cure

Buggin' For a Cure
Learn more about Noah's fundraising goals for 2017

Monday, May 26, 2014

5:00

This has not been the easiest week. I have no idea why, there were no special days this week that triggered memories, no birthdays, no holidays, but for some reason emotions were all over, especially in me. 
The after school/evening times seem to be the hardest for me. I come home from work tired and drained and here are these two sweet kiddos who both want all my love and attention, (SG really just wants to eat, as she brings me any food she can reach and says. "Ease?"....translation, please?). There's homework to be done and dinner to make. I'm sure any mom can relate to these moments because I just don't have enough hands for everything they need. All my children have gone through this stage where they hit the 5:00 hour and they turn into little monsters....yes even the cutest of my children have a whole other side come 5!  SG wants to be held, be fed, pull every cabinet open, go in any room with an open door, unpack my purse, hit her brother....you name it, she's into it.  You can't fault her, she's walking everywhere now and exploring her world, she's also really good at testing every boundary she can dream off (she is so her sister, just at a much younger age!) 
(Standing up in her chair...she just learned this little trick...the chair was eventually taken away, because she won't sit in it!)

And then there's Noah. He loves to talk. Ellie was his best friend, they talked and played all the time, even if they were fighting, they were still playing. Now he has no one except me, since SG isn't always the best playmate!  When the crazy 5:00 hour hits, I miss her so much because the fact that she's not here is so obvious. Noah is almost 6, SG just hit 14 months....there's this large age gap that some chubby cheeks used to fill. 

Despite the toughness of this week for me, God has made sure that Richard could be the strong one this week. Finally after many tears last weekend he finally told me to get in the car, we were going to the cemetary.  I've struggled with the cemetary honestly. I never know what to do there. I know that only her body is there, and I kept telling myself that I don't need to go there to feel close to her.  Almost like I had convinced myself that I was weak if I needed to go there, I know it sounds crazy, but that's the only way I can think to describe it. So we loaded up and headed out.  As I sat down beside her plot and Richard took the kids, I was overwhelmed with sadness. It seems with each passing month I miss her more and more. I had this overwhelming urge to lay down on the ground beside her. Of course I couldn't get over my grown up pride so I didn't. Noah finally joined me, and took the flower I brought with me and asked which end Ellie's head was at, so that he could put it there like it was in her hair. He made me smile. As we were about to leave, Noah laid right down next to her...wish I had his bravery sometimes! He was sad and expressed it much better than I had been this past week. 

I know this walk is going to get harder with the upcoming birthdays, more holidays, and our new addition. I know there will be more enjoyment. There will be more smiles and more heartache. I'm just so grateful that when I'm falling apart, The Lord has blessed me with two amazing boys that know exactly what I need when I need it. 

Last weekend we attended part of the Relay for Life event in the county where I work. It was the first time I'd ever participated as someone personally effected by cancer. I really enjoyed myself, and once it got dark and the luminaries were lit, the tears flowed freely, but my heart was filled. We found numerous bags around the track done for Ellie. Noah loved them and would quickly drop to the ground to read them.

 And like the amazing little boy he is, he turned around and wrapped one skinny little arm around me and one around Richard, for a good ol family hug! (Ok now that I write this I realized where a lot of the emotions from this past week came from!)

Lots of prayers this week for those who have lost a loved one. Many of them have weighed heavy on my heart this week. Would you join in me in praying that they would feel the peace that only God can give?

I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33


Prayers, Praise and Pink

Carly





Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Happy DC, Birth, Mother's Day

I find it funny that like 5 hours ago I knew exactly what I wanted to write about...had the plan all in my head, and then all of a sudden its 8:20 at night, and all my brain cells are fried...but isn't that what being a mom is all about.  Being so caught up in the craziness of the day that you just kinda forget everything else.  And very appropriately this has happened on mother's day!...now its 3 days later and this blog still hasn't been finished, but hey that's life, when your prego, have a teenaged 13 month old, an almost 6 year old, a busy hubby and testing has started at work!!

This past week has been trying, emotional, and sweet all wrapped up in 7 days (probably like 11 days now)! It really wasn't as rough as I anticipated it to be....actually I didn't anticipate much from this week, maybe I mean to say it wasn't as rough as people might assume it would be.  No idea if that makes sense or not (remember its mother's day, and I've been home with mine by myself all afternoon!) 
Race for Hope DC was a fantastic trip!  Getting there was a little hairy....someone may have taken the wrong exit, someone may have had a meltdown or two, and some friends may have gotten stuck on the metro for an extra stop or two ( I was only directly involved in two of those incidents).  But once we got there and we started walking, I watched Richard take off running, for his girl.  I watched my sister and her husband take off running, for Ellie...my heart swelled!

(I just looked up and realized that Forest Gump is on TV and he's running...hehe).  Forest Gump just ran because he liked running, my family ran because they made a promise to run in her honor.  We finished the walk and found the Wall of Hope. There on this 20 foot long wall was my girl's beautiful face among all the other fighters, survivors and those whose journey had ended.


Of course there were tears, but hearing we were part of the 2.4 million raised, again filled my heart with pride. Our team alone raised over $4500!


During a crazy busy week at school, Noah once again spiked a fever.  He was already on his 2nd round of antibiotics and 2nd run in with strep.  I spent hours trying to calm myself down, to not freak out, its just a fever.  But again when you've been to the doctor's office as much as we have, its hard not to let your brain run wild.  He's all better now, and has been quite the sweet heart the past two days!

My birthday came and went, with sweet presents from my boys. I got to wear a tiara on my special day, but my boy was feeling puny, and my princess isn't physically here.  It wasn't a horrible day, just felt a little empty.

As mother's day approached, I didn't really have any expectations for the day. I was excited because we'd all get to go to church together in the morning, something that hasn't happened a whole lot lately with Richard's busy work schedule. I couldn't help but smile that morning. Preacher was praying, Noah was holding my hand, and then reached over and put his other hand on my belly, and just patted it.  This little boy is just wise beyond his almost 6 years. His heart, that he wears right on his skinny little sleeve, is just huge.  He loves to help others and is just an amazing big brother.  There came a moment in church, where that awesome peace came over me!  And my heart said, "I don't miss her today".  I know that sounds horribly harsh...but there are some moments in my day where the pain of missing her is immense.  Or I'd just like for 10 minutes to feel like a whole person, not that someone is missing.  And that morning I had it.  The thought of her made me smile, I didn't feel sad, I felt her all around me, saying "I yove you mommy!"


Preacher delivered such a meaningful sermon to our life at the moment.  This one line that struck me and stuck with me.  God doesn't tell us our destination in life.  If he told us the destination, we would focus on that and not the journey.  If you could have seen the light bulb that went off over my head!  Well duh!  If God had told me last February when Ellie was diagnosed with cancer that she wasn't going to live, that would have been my focus for 11 months.  I would have spent my time thinking when and where and why.  I knew God was capable of doing anything he wanted to do in her life, so we focused so much on each day, not the future.  We focused on making sure we prayed for her every day, we focused on encouraging others, we focused on keeping a smile on our family's face. We focused on living life.  Not knowing the outcome, allows you to completely trust in God.  With Ellie's type of cancer, we knew He was our only hope, we knew the statistics said that children under the age of 3 with metastatic pineoblastoma don't survive.  But because I put all my trust in the Lord, and just focused on the day we were in, we made it through with a ton of happy memories.  We went where the Lord told us to go, we allowed Him to shape us, to mold us, and to flatten us out a couple of times so that He could reshape us.  And He's still continuing to reshape and remold our family.
"Yet you, LORD, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand." Isaiah 64:8 


Prayers, Praise and Pink
~Carly


Saturday, May 3, 2014

In Celebration Of

It got quiet in the house just now...so rare around here, unless its 6am (and even then you have a chance of Noah showing up awake!) The boys went to the grocery store and SG just laid down for a nap and I was sweeping - because my dog has been slacking on the crumb clean up lately - and it hit me.  Tomorrow is the first walk we are doing "In Memory Of", which is way different than "In Honor Of!" We did this walk last year while she was in Memphis, and then two days later I got to take the long trip to Memphis to see her for the first time in 6 weeks. Tears arrived, and while I'm so proud of what we are accomplishing in her memory, I sure wish she was physically here to experience it.  I miss her so much, and its days like today where I could sure use a chubby cheeked hug from her.  Where she would tell me, "it will be okay Mommy!"  

This little old Princess Strong Team, composed of 26 registered team members has raised $4,339.  We are ranked #97 amongst 613 teams. I'm still amazed at the support so many people from all over the country give to us.  I'm amazed that strangers have become family and would travel all the way to DC with us "in memory of". 

I remember last year feeling so proud of my fighter, that she had this horrible disease and she was fighting it with a smile.  This year, I feel even more proud that she fought that entire battle with a smile on her face and a dance in her step.  She never complained about doctors and shots and medicines.  She loved her St. Jude friends.  I'm proud that we made choices for her treatment based on prayer.  I'm proud that she knew that Mommy and Daddy loved her to the moon and back, but God loved her most.  I'm proud that even those she's gone from this earth that we continue to raise substantial amounts of money to show just how important this all is to us.  I'm proud we are dedicated to helping others who will be faced with the same road we traveled.  I know Ellie's purpose was fulfilled here on earth, and I want so badly to fulfil mine.
Tomorrow we will wake up bright and early and head to DC, with lots of friends and family in tow.  I remember stepping into Freedom Plaza last year and having my breath taken away but the shear number of people that were there to support brain cancer.  I'm expecting the same experience this year, but probably with a heavier but super proud heart.  Noah is beyond excited for this day, as he happily emptied his cancer kid piggy bank this morning to add to our team total.  I'm pretty proud of the huge heart this child has for helping other children with cancer. 
So I ask for prayers tomorrow, for safety and for peace. That when I become overwhelmed at the masses of people and the stress of getting there, that I can take a deep breath, close my eyes and envision my girl, dimple faced smiling at me, reminding me to dance to the music and sing out loud. And when my feet are tired (3 miles isn't a Sunday stroll for me) I remember everything my girl endured and I can press on...because its all in Memory of Ellie! Although I think I like "In Celebration of" much better, because lets face it, we should totally celebrate the fact that she is in heaven, with her Heavenly father, no longer enduring the pains of this world, and one day we will all be together again....dancing.

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:9-13 NIV)


Thank you for all who have donated to our team and helped us reach our goal.  There's still time if you'd like to help.  Click Here to donate to Team Princess Strong for the Race For Hope in DC.

Prayers, Praise and Pink
Carly