Thursday, October 16, 2014

Crying is crippling. Let the debilitating breakdown begin...

It's okay to cry.  I know this to be true.  But, I can't live by that rule day-in and day-out because crying is crippling.  This week, however, is an exception.  Tomorrow will be 2 years since Ty died in our arms.  I don't want to ever forget a single thing about him, or about that day.  Not even for a second. Yet, I can't bear to remember, either.  It's a twisted little truth about life without him.  To think of him is to inflict pain upon myself - and I wish it wasn't so.  I wish it was as beautiful and positive as I most often portray it to be.  I wish every memory brought me laughter instead of tears, but i'm not there yet and doubt I ever will be.

Every other day of the year, I am usually doing well. I put one foot in front of the other, because I push the painful thoughts out of my head.  When my memories float in, I allow them to stay until I feel the tears in my eyes.  Then I push them aside, like a fly on my nose.

How can I do that?  How can I shoo him away like that?  It's because if I don't, I can't function.  I can't be the wife I need to be for Lou, the mom I need to be for Gavin, or the person I need to be to keep working at the foundation in his memory.  Keep Calm and Carry On - that's what the t-shirt says, right?   Well, not today.  Not yesterday and not tomorrow, either.  Tomorrow he will be gone for 2 years, and I will spend every second remembering him.  In fact, the ladybugs came and infested my house yesterday.  I have been waiting for them to come.  They carry a message of peace and everlasting youth on their wings.

Yesterday I went through hundreds of photographs and cried until I couldn't physically do it anymore.  Today I stepped out the door and breathed in the same Fall air that hung in my lungs the day he died.  I allowed myself to cry during the entire drive to the office, talking to him out loud asking him where he was, and cursing over and over again about what he went through.  "I want to know!" I yelled.  "I want to know where you are, and what it's like, and how you are doing!"

Tomorrow I will watch his videos while eating blue Sour Patch Kids and pink Starburst.  I will listen to his little voice, watch him smile and I will allow myself the photographs that break my heart the most.  The photos of him lying still, his skin matching the porcelain white of his 3-piece suit.  And the hospital photos where he is just sick and tired of being sick and tired.  Like this one.


His eyes are pleading with me.  His sadness is palpable.  And me... I'm just so useless. He was physically and emotionally abused for half of his life.  And I allowed it.  I stood by his side and I held him down and I reassured him that everything was going to be okay time and time again.  Through all of his immeasurable pain and suffering, all I could do was stand by and watch.  To hold his hand and allow it, and in the end he died anyway.  There is no "supposed to be like this."  God doesn't hand-pick children to suffer like this, and he certainly doesn't pick and choose over which ones he will allow life, and which ones he takes with him depending on who fights with vigor, who prays harder, or who loves more.  It is NOT a contest. If love and prayer was enough, I know hundreds of children who would still be here.  My God would never do such a thing to children.

The falling leaves are impeccably fitting.  A true depiction of death and dying.  One last graceful decent through the air before returning to dust.  It was always my favorite season, but I will forever look at it differently.  I see Ty in every falling leaf and the beautifully tragic ending it represents.  So natural, free and organic. Temporary.  We are all temporary, and one day each and every one of us will fall from the branch.  For so many, however, it is simply too soon.

Today was the first time I realized how glad I am that we waited to host his memorial until April. The start of Spring.  A celebration of rebirth and new life.  Hurricane Sandy (that B*tch) made the timing unintentional, but when I look back now it was a symbolic blessing.  Gone from this Earth in the Fall and returned to Heaven to begin his new life in the Spring.

A Message to Ty:
Your final resting place is finally complete, my baby boy.  Your Daddy made every effort to make it so. When we decided to erect a statue in Long Beach in your memory, and in tribute to all children afflicted with cancer, the original mini clay models were ours to keep.  We had searched for so long to find an appropriate urn for you for so long, but nothing ever seemed right.  Your incredible Dad found the perfect place for you, so you could continue to be with us every night when we say "goodnight' and every morning when we rise.  He presented it to me on your birthday just 13 days ago, and I cried so unexpectedly and so severely, I couldn't breathe.  Never could I have imagined something more perfect for me to whisper "goodnight" to every night.  I love you always and forever.  Big huge giant much.  I hate living this life without you, but I know we'll join you soon.  And I will hold your hands as you show me how to soar across the skies - my little Peter Pan.  How I love you so.  I could never have imagined a more perfect child, and I am still in awe that I was chosen to care for you.  How lucky I am always and forever.  I hope you can feel my kisses in heaven and I hope beyond hope that you will visit me in my dreams.  XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXO.


In our bedroom, where you belong.  the perfect place for you to rest



49 comments:

  1. We will never forget Ty or your family. We will continue to share his story with everyone we can. I am praying that you and Lou can find some peace in knowing Ty is waiting for you, enjoying the sunshine. Time is a blink of an eye for him. Keep faithful. Cindy and know that many of us are lifting you and Lou up in prayer, always.

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  2. Oh wow. I just had a big ugly cry reading your post. I'm sure (positively sure) it is nothing like the pain you feel. There are no words of comfort but I hope you know there is a big community of people that are "Campbell Fans" that think of you guys daily and hope some kind of grace descends on you while you work through this crazy life. Please know people love you and think this situation is the most fucked up thing that can ever happen to a family.

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  3. Super Ty Always and Forever ♡

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  4. Dear beautiful courageous Cindy. Words can not describe the pain I know you feel. I am millions trillions times sorry. I wish he would still be here. I want to dedicate this to you your husband your super amazing and funny son Gavin and to my little superhero Ty.
    Have you seen my boy?

    Have you seen my boy?
    He has beautiful blond hair and big green eyes.
    Has he passed by you when I was looking to the other side?
    Have you seen him running around jumping in a muddy puddle?
    I think I just missed him when I wasn't looking around.
    Have you seen my boy?
    He is only 2 years old.
    Maybe I just got distracted and he ran by to play with his toys?
    Maybe you saw him smiling showing his lollipop stained lips?
    Would you please help me find him because he will be terribly missed.
    Have you seen my boy?
    He was just carefree and he now has cancer.
    He is almost 3 and I hope doctors find the answers.
    Have you seen my boy?
    He was just laying here in the hospital bed
    My little superhero.
    Have you seen my boy?
    We call him superTy now.
    I look thru my car mirror and he always gives me his smile.
    Have you seen my boy?
    He has won the war against cancer.
    We are here in Mexico and my prayers have been answered!
    Have you seen my boy?
    He is playing with his brother being a tough little boy making me a proud mother.
    Have you seen my boy?
    He is not well again.
    His body just stopped moving and we are waiting for a new plan.
    Have you seen my boy?
    He was just here.
    Please I don't want cancer to reappear!
    Have you seen my boy?
    He is 5 and he is still here.
    In my bed breathing next to my face full of tears.
    Have you seen my boy?
    He is no longer here.
    If you see him please tell him to have no fear!
    He is my sunshine my lady bug my tears!
    He is my everything!
    He is my superhero!


    By Tatiana kidanov.
    Sending your family strength and love on this horrific terrible tough day.

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    1. i can't even respond with real words. This has touched me through my bones. I love you so much, Tatiana, thank you.

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    2. Trust me it's not even close to how much you have touched my life. Thank you for sharing your life and your pain. Your beautiful boy is forever in my memory. Love

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  5. Although we never were blessed with meeting Ty or your family in person, we think and pray for you everyday. It's unbearable to believe it's been 2 years and can't imagine the continued grief. We have 2 boys, 6 & 4. Our oldest son Christian was diagnosed at 18 months with autism. Ty gave us the biggest blessing through his legacy. We use to fear our sons future and feel sad over his obstacles. We now realize we are blessed to have him here with us and and celebrate all the little accomplishments. I will cry with your family and loved ones tomorrow, but continue to celebrate the strength Super Ty has provided our family.

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  6. Thinking of you and Lou. Super Ty is always with you. I hope you find some peace tomorrow.

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  7. I want you to know that even after 2 years people that never met Ty and probably will never meet you, we still remember him and think of him. I don't know if this brings you any comfort, but your beautiful baby boy is not forgotten.

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  8. Heartbroken all over again. Ty has made and continues to make an amazing impact. I remember him in some way every day and I do my best to honor his memory. Peace to you Campbell's. Many blessings.

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    1. I haven't seen a ladybug in quite some time. But I had one magically show up today in the same place this day for the past two years. Yes, it could just be coincidence. I prefer to think otherwise. Love and hugs.

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  9. I pray that TY visits all of you today and that his beautiful, healthy, happy soul fills your home all day.

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  10. There are no words that can adequately convey how much Ty has changed my life. Ty, you and your family are forever in my heart.

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  11. Thinking of you Cindy and Ty and your entire family on this difficult day. Sending warmest thoughts and prayers. I am a better mother to my girls because of you and Ty. Thank you for continuing to share your journey with us.

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  12. just simply sending you the strength and courage to get through today. I'm so incredibly sad for your family. you are a fierce mama bear, and while you grieve we grieve with you. and send Ty our love

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  13. Love your sweet boy so much, words seem so useless when trying to describe the impact Ty has made in my life. I wish he was here for you. God bless you Campbell's!

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  15. I have had dozens of ladybugs flooding into my son's room the past week. My son, who brought me to Ty and looks like him. Every time I see them, my breath catches. You have all changed my life and I am forever grateful, but forever heartbroken for the reason. You are so courageous Cindy. Any Mama that continues to move through life after such devastation is the bravest of superheroes. I agree with others here. You are not alone. You are never alone. Sending much love that you feel Ty everywhere today.

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  16. (((Hugs))) thinking of you guys and the best boy all day today. . .

    Joy Marielle

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  17. Thinking of you and Ty,as I always do...

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  18. A beautiful statue for a beautiful boy! I am thinking of all of you today.

    The Fall season is now different for me too, Cindy. I remember breathing in the crisp air on this day 2 years ago, thinking of Ty and wondering if he had passed on.

    Such a touching poem by Tatiana. Ty has touched all our lives and we will never forget.

    Love and (((hugs))) to you......

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  19. Ty is in a safe and beautiful place that defies human understanding. He is in a place that does not know sorrow, only unimaginable joy, love and peace. We will all be there together one day. We are all here for a purpose. You are living out your purpose here with amazing strength and purpose. God bless.

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  20. Deep condolences on your loss. Kai's mom's blog sent me here, and I am thinking of you and your family today, and of your little guy who should be here with you now. Please take care of yourselves.

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  21. Christine Novak MickaOctober 17, 2014 at 9:43 AM

    Two years ago today, the most impactful blog post I have ever read was composed of a name. Ty Louis Campbell. And two dates.

    And though I had just recently discovered Ty's journey, even though I did not know him or his incredible family personally, I felt like I did. I suddenly felt myself struggling to breathe. I excused myself to the restroom at work where I proceeded to sob uncontrollably. I continued like that for three days....episodes where every breath was a struggle and I could not hold myself and my emotions together for five minutes at a time to function on anything "normal."

    My own journey of awareness about Ty, about pediatric cancer, and about my own sense of self has taken me down a very unexpected path from that moment two years ago. I am a different person. I am a better person. And each and every day I give thanks to God for the blessings He has allowed me, particularly my children, and I always end my prayer with a thanks to God for bringing Ty into my life, for showing me what this life is all about, and for urging me to seize this calling and never let it go.

    This morning in NY the sky is a pure blue, with not a cloud in sight. The leaves are falling in their splendor. The air is crisp--it forces it's way into your lungs and makes you really FEEL it. And I feel Ty all around in this magnificence. I feel the sorrow. And I feel the promise.

    Thinking of you always, Cindy. Thank you for bringing your Ty to us all.

    Love,
    Chris Micka

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  22. I read your post last night and just sobbed and sobbed...how is it possible that 2 years have passed? It feels closer than that. But, like so many, Ty continues to touch my heart and remind me of what is important. Each time it's raining and we can I take the kids out and we jump in puddles...we act silly...my husband thinks I'm crazy but we keep doing it because for me it reminds me of what is important...the fact that we can jump in puddles and so many cannot...and because I love the sounds of my boys laughing. None of us knows how many days we have and I want to remember the laughter. Hugs, Cindy...

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  23. Sending much love to you today.

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  24. Thinking of you all today, as I do on so many other days.

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  25. Today is not a smiling day at all..thinking of you all and praying for you..cannot imagine its been 2 years..

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  26. Sending you strength and love today Cindy. I pray for Ty to visit you in your dreams, to let you know now he feels only love, only joy where his is pain does not exist.

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  27. Wow this is heartbreaking .... so sorry you are going through this pain. I believe in angels and Ty is one of them I'm sure. There is a song by Cold Play called Where is my Boy, don't know if you have heard it but its soothing to the ears. Be strong, its hard to say, but you still have a family to look after let that be your strength!!!

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  28. I went to bed last night and woke this morning thinking of your family, especially Ty. I can't begin to express how very sorry I am for your loss. Cindy, never doubt everything you did for Ty, you did out of love. You never intended to be a co contributor to his pain. Rather, like all parents, crippled with fear, you desperately wanted him better. He knew it then, and you have to believe he knows it now. It is crappy that as parents we sometimes feel so helpless and guilty. But, I know you also will never forget the joy, love, and total contentment this beautiful, beautiful child brought you. You and your entire family are in my prayers today.

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  29. Although we've never met please know that our family remembers Ty, we mourn and shed tears for him alone with you. We will never forget the beautiful little boy that changed our lives forever. Thank you for sharing him worth us.

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  30. Such a beautiful letter to Ty. My heart aches for you. Ty will always feel your kisses in Heaven. Love to you all.

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  31. I am crying. I honestly don't know how you do it - you are an inspiration to motherhood worldwide. Thank you for sharing Ty with us. He has touched my soul in ways you couldn't imagine. My boys know about Ty - their 'Superhero in the sky" and they jump in every muddy puddle they see and ask Ty if he sent that puddle just for them. I don't know you personally, but from the bottom of my heart I need to thank you for sharing Ty with us, and for making me closer to my boys - letting them jump in muddy puddles instead of getting mad, making me stop hurrying through life and start playing more with my boys. I owe it all to you & Ty. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!! Sending much, love, prayers, hugs & kisses your way...

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  32. Dear Campbell family, I'm so sorry. I can't think of anything else. I'm just do sorry.

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  33. This is a Spanish song. Everytime I listen to it my eyes fill with tears, it makes me think of you (Campbell Family) and of course of Ty.
    The song has been translated into English for Ty.
    The Spanish version of the song is called 'El Triste' which means 'The sad one', the performer is Jose Jose.

    How sad it was to say goodbye
    when we adored each other most
    even the swallow emigrated
    foreseeing the final...

    How sad looks everything without you
    the seas are leaving the beaches
    and the colours are turning grey
    everything is loneliness now

    I don’t know whether I’ll see you again
    I don’t know what’ll happen to my life
    without the blue star of your being
    which doesn’t shed its light on me anymore

    I want to relish my pain today
    I’m not asking for compassion nor pity
    the story of this love was written
    for eternity

    How sad say everyone that I am
    that I am always speaking of you
    they don’t know that thinking of your love, of your love
    is how I’ve been able to live, I’ve been able to live

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  34. That picture says more than a million words, a billion words for that matter--to try and describe it would be impossible. It makes me sad and angry, not only for Ty, but for you, Lou, and sweet Gavin. Kids are dying every day. We lost a local Neuroblastoma warrior on October 9th--the most beautiful three year old girl. She loved all things superhero, just like Ty. I am sure that Ty was the first to greet her, but it shouldn't be this way. This just can't keep happening to these children. Enough is enough. I will gladly donate towards the cause, though what I really wish is that I were smart enough to contribute in a more direct way.

    I will have my mother put you on the rosary. She recites the Sorrowful Mysteries every Saturday.

    To any and all reading here, tomorrow is little Jayla's funeral. Please keep her family in your thoughts and prayers. I cannot imagine their pain, but sadly all too many parents can and do.
    http://www.edmondsun.com/news/local_news/article_8e2a4760-5591-11e4-be3c-e75b51cf0697.html?mode=jqm

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  35. Big big hug to you Cindy and Lou, I cannot believe that 2 years have passed by. Your post made me shed so much tears which I haven't been for a long time. Feeling your pain much in my heart now and I can never imagine what it is like for you. Big hugz once again and allow yourself to be weak for these few days but after that you have to be strong again.

    Vivienne from Singapore

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  36. David Gray came thru. All week I was so excited about seeing the David Gray concert in St louis (hmmmm, louis). Then on Wednesday I realized the day of the concert was the day Ty went to heaven. I suddenly felt sad. I prayed that David Gray would sing "the one I love" in honor of ty. Well he did. My eyes watered the entire time thinking of Ty And Cindy 's great love story. Then to finish it off my tipsy butt went to a karaoke bar and sang "over you" by miranda lambert. All for you ty. Always for you. I leave you with the lyrics of song that reminds me of ty and Cindy.
    The One I Love"

    Gonna close my eyes
    Girl and watch you go
    Running through this life darling
    Like a field of snow
    As the tracer glides
    In its graceful arc
    Send a little prayer out to ya
    'cross the falling dark

    Tell the repo man
    And the stars above
    You're the one I love

    Perfect summers night
    Not a wind that breathes
    Just the bullets whispering gentle
    'mongst the new green leaves
    There's things I might have said
    Only wish I could
    Now I'm leaking life faster
    Then I'm leaking blood

    Tell the repo man
    And the stars above
    You're the one I love
    You're the one I love
    The one I love

    Don't see Elysium
    Don't see no fiery hell
    Just the lights up bright baby
    In the bay hotel
    Next wave coming in
    Like an ocean roar
    Won't you take my hand darling
    On that old dancefloor

    We can twist and shout
    Do the turtle dove
    And you're the one I love
    You're the one I love
    The one I love

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  37. Oh Cindy, thank you for sharing your innermost feelings with us. Ty's life story and your love for him will impact countless lives thanks to your gift of writing and willingness to share the most painful, intimate feelings of your ordeal. I think of Ty almost daily because of your gift. His life was so short yet so powerful--so impactful--and only God knows how many lives he will continue to influence. I believe there in everlasting love and life, and so I believe Ty's impact and the "Ripples in the water" will go on forever. Such special parents who created such special children that will leave a forever mark on this world. <3

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  38. I watched the other day this new movie, that tells the breaking down of a mother and a father. Their interior world after loosing a chid. It is called: The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them. I think you could like it. The loose of a child is this kind of tragedy everyone runs away of hearing of---specially when we have children. Death is probably the TABU issue of this century and we live like this life was going to last forever The father of the woman said something I kept In mind because I think it´s true: TRAGEDY IS A FOREIGN COUNTRY AND WE DON´T THE LANGUAGE OF THE NATIVES. I guess each October life gets a little heavier ...2 years is a long time.

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  39. Dear Cindy,

    That was so beautifully written. I'm so sorry for your loss and am thinking of you and your beautiful Ty today. He has made such an impact on the lives of so many and will continue to do so. I wish you peace.

    Ann from Buffalo

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  40. I speak to Ty whenever the lady bug drops by. I whisper to him asking him how he is and telling him that he was loved and is missed by many.

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  41. Oh Cindy! Thank you for sharing such heartfelt and precious thoughts with us on this most difficult anniversary. It's been two years but I think of him so often...your love for him is immeasurable. It's a small gesture but I wanted you to know, I am running in a marathon for the first time ever in January. Some of the proceeds benefit research for childhood cancer. When Ty first passed away, I began running. I hate running! But I always pushed through..."just one more block" as I listened to Mumford and Sons and thought of your beautiful boy Ty. Running a marathon has always been on my bucket list and now I will fulfill it. And I will run with Ty in my heart...God bless his incredible soul and wishing you, Gavin and Lou peace and light as you feel his spirit around you. xoxo

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  42. Such beautiful,heartbreaking words. Im so sorry. Just know that through your blog so many have become aware of pediatric cancer. Ty has a living legacy and he will always provide you with enough strength to carry on.

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  43. I'm just so sorry - that picture breaks my heart. I will remember Ty and others like him (Ronan, Justin, Ethan, Ava ... so many others) all the days of my life. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

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