Wednesday, January 23, 2008

'Til We Meet Again, Juju

Today is Julian's funeral and I just have to share another word about him. I think Mimi just has this way of drawing us in. She has not only told us about the day to day care of Julian, his treatments and tests, but she has shared her feelings. She's been brutally honest about how hard it's been for them. She somehow makes it real for us as readers. Although outsiders, we feel as though we personally know Julian. As though we're part of his world. But most importantly, Mimi always seems to find the positive. Despite the fact that her baby was just taken from her at a much-too-young-age, Mimi continues to trust in God, thanking Him for the time with Julian, thanking Him for getting her through these days, and trusting that Julian is in His care and she'll see him again one day. How inspiring is that?

Although Mimi's updates bring me to tears, they also inspire me. Hug your kids and say a prayer for all those little ones who are hurting, suffering from cancer and other illnesses.

"She crumbles on to the bathroom floor, an unbelievable pain in her chest... What just happened? She is bleeding. She places her shaky hands on her heart ,expecting to feel blood flowing through her fingers. She looked down at them , NOTHING... The hole in her heart, the incredible pain, the deep sense of drifting away, it was all about HIS death... She is hurting beyond words...How can she explain? No one understands. Alone, on her bathroom floor, she is lost... Never will she hold him too tight again, never again will she kiss his mouth, never will she feel the weight of his little bald head on her chest and never will she have the taste of his tears on her lips... "I want him back" She cries desperately "I want him back, PLEASE GOD" She gets up and gets in the shower, lets the burning hot water run on her face. Maybe it will wash away the tears, maybe even it will take care of the cruel pain ...Maybe when she is done, things will be fixed and will be back to normal... She gets dressed, looks at herself in the mirror and thinks "who is this person? " Dark circles, a few more wrinkles, red, swollen eyes... It didn't go away, this is our normal from now on, our normal life now is us without him... Out the door, she hears the laughter of her boys. One is missing... But they are laughing still... If they can laugh, why couldn't she? If they can play and smile, she can still hug and love them, forever , because she is their mother , simply because they are part of her just as he was, just as he still is... By the grace of God, She still smiles, by the grace of God, she will keep on. The bathroom floor will still be her refuge, but as long as the laughter rings behind the door, she will always get back up..."

60 comments:

annie said...

prayers for julian & family...

Domestic Spaz said...

Dawn - thank you so much for bringing Julian into our lives. I've had such a hard time going to his care page and reading the updates because it affects me so greatly but you have kept us all updated here. I can't imagine losing a child and being as strong as Mimi has been. Since reading Julian's story I hug my children a little tighter and longer and I've learned to appreciate them so much more. Thank you so much and as they have throughout this journey, my thoughts are with Julian's family for their strength and healing.

Anonymous said...

Dawn, thank you for introducing me to Julian and Mimi. I only wished I could have met them sooner. I just found your blog last night and in turn Mimi's. I read the entire blog on care pages from start to finish last night. Even knowing the outcome, I couldn't stop reading and hoping for a happier ending. Mimi is a very inspiring woman and Juju is am amazing little boy. My thoughts are with them and you and all those who knew Julian personally. Take care

mkk49 said...

I lost my daughter to Brain Cancer 2 and a half years ago. Reading that brought it all back. Please pass on my prays and thoughts to Mimi. Please let her know that yes there are others who know. If she ever needs an ear give her my email.

Tara said...

heartbreaking... it brought tears to my eyes. No mother should ever have to say good bye to her child.

Hilmarose said...

My heart broke as I read this... beyond words.

Lucydolls' ramblings said...

Thank you for sharing this family with us. I have read the post with tears. 8 years ago, I went through the same thing with my 4 almost 5 year old son. Mimi described the pain exactly. Lean on Jesus!!! That is what I can say. He will carry you through it, even tho' it seems impossible at times.
Again thank you for sharing!

Shauna said...

Thanks Dawn for introducing me to Mimi and Julian. I've been following the updates on carepages, and feel like they are a part of my heart. I have wept and grieved with them all. I, too, posted a special thing in honor of JuJu and Mimi, on this toughest of days. I've been praying and will continue to. Mimi's faith and raw honesty has touched me deeply and reminded me to hug my boys tighter and longer. To enjoy each minute God grants me with them.

Heidi said...

Oh, Mimi, I'm so sorry for you!

Carla Stream said...

My heart is breaking but I am also loving Jesus more and more by watching Mimi cling to Him.

Manic Mom said...

Dawn, you wrote that part, the part of how you imagine Mimi to be in the bathroom? I see it that way too. You describe it perfectly. Sadly, but beautiful. I think of her at night when I tuck my kids in at bed and my face has just crumpled into a mass of tears right this moment. Poor, poor Mimi. Blessed little Julian. God bless their whole family.

Manic Mom said...

Or maybe that's Mimi's description of what she's going through but she cannot write it in first person. I understand.

BoufMom9 said...

Thank you so much for sharing. You are right, she makes you absolutely FEEL all she is feeling and my heart breaks for her.
What a sad day...

Melissa said...

I can't even imagine being this strong. My prayers go out to Mimi and her family.

Lois said...

Smiling and laughing will seem odd for awhile. That's normal. It will come with time. Much love to Mimi and to all who have lost a child. Faith in the Lord is marvelous and his ever present help is real!

Anonymous said...

I've been keeping up with Julian's carepage for a while now and though I never got to meet the little guy in person - how he has touched my heart forever. I've cried many times thinking of Julian and his family, its so depressing - how could anyone handle going through that. Mimi is an amazing woman. Thanks for sharing Juju with us.

stuffie said...

Thank you Dawn, for sharing this painful journey with us all. A look into her private hell and incrediable strength amazes me. I send her my prayers and my thoughts. And this whole process makes me greatful for what is important, when you can loose sight of it in the day to day mom-dom. Hugs to Mimi and family.

LadyMau said...

I too found Julian through your blog and thank you for that. I have no children (God is wise and knows who not to give them to) and though I have never met the family, I grieve along with them. I wore yellow today in honor of Julian who was certainly taken too soon.

What amazes me the most is Mimi only posted what seemed like anger once. She posted her heart wrenching pain in this last post. She never cursed God once. That is a testament to her faith and love of both Julian and God. She knows that Julian is pain free now and a healthy and whole little boy that she will see again someday. God will see her through this pain and all the firsts that will be painful this coming year. She took great care of God's creation - Julian- while he was on loan before being needed back in heaven.

Janelle said...

My prayers are with Julian's family. I lost my second baby girl at only 9 days old almost 5 years ago. The pain never completely goes away but eases as time passes. Julian is now an angel in heaven with my Mindy Grace and is no longer suffering here on earth. May God bring peace and comfort to Julian's family.

Anonymous said...

Dear Dawn,

I am also just one of MANY people that have been touched by Julian and his sweet mama, Mimi. I am so grateful that you brought the Avery family into all of our lives. Thank you!

I want to encourage all of your blog readers to stay committed to praying for the Avery family over the next months and possibly years. I can not even fathom the physical pain as well as the heart ache that this family is now experiencing. I am a firm believer in the power of prayer. I believe that we could help carry this sweet family's burden by praying for them EVERYDAY.

Your blog is a blessing, thanks!

Lisa, San Antonio, Texas

Dr. Bob said...

My heart just breaks for this family -- and all of the families who have to watch their children struggle with things too big for such little people.

I am praying for Julian's family and am taking an extra moment to be grateful that I don't have to be that strong.

Kristin said...

Dawn,

I'm praying for Mimi and her family. Julian is in his hands now. We went thru this 4 years ago with our youngest. I can feel the pain she's going through and relate. Thank you for sharing this w/us all.

Kristin

Shally said...

Wow. This brought me to tears.
Thanks for sharing.

Patty said...

Mimi's strength amazes me, I am praying for her strength and her belief to carry her and her family through.

Sherry said...

I also want to thank you for introducing me to Julian and Mimi. And through them I have learned about Quinn, Coleman, Chase, Derek, and the list goes on. The list is way too long. By way of your blog, I have also learned about little Ethan. I have learned through all of them to appreciate my children so much more, to touch them, feel them breathe, listen to their heartbeat, hold them close.
I have wondered at some point if Mimi might be interested in getting published. You might be able to introduce her writings to your Guideposts friends. But that's down the road. Just thinking.

DanaB said...

There are no words for things like this...only tears, hugs and hope.

~~

Cheryl said...

Mimi is truly an inspiration. My heart aches for her and her family every time I read one of her updates. I posted about Julian on my blog, and finally figured out how to get Mimi's video on there. I can't watch and listen to it without sobbing hysterically by the end. What a sweet, beautiful little boy! God speed, little man. Fly high with the angels. You've earned your wings.

roseys madhouse said...

MY tears from reading this and your updates have been flowing freely. My prayers are with them and also I know that Julian is now a happier little boy running free with God. I hug my children tighter since being touched by Julian and his family and hoping that we dont have to go through what they have gone through.

Anonymous said...

evey day i would read juju's updates & how every day was a miracle he was here. i did pray for him that GOd would take him home with little pain . i prayed for his mommy because no mommy should see their child suffer & then wither away to nothing .
I know that he is in heaven now & that he is free & with God.
Now i pray for his mommy bcause she needs the prayers now her & the family . im praying that she will be able to get through this.
when i hug my children i think of her.
I know she is a strong woman because God does not give you more than you can handle .
im glad she has this much support from all of us who are crying along with each other as we read these posts....

amanda said...

Dawn
I have just started reading King Julian's carepages. I have not finished all the postings yet. I was wondering what was the meaning behind everyone wearing yellow?? My heart broke for them Saturday night when I got home and read her post. I have three children and can't begin to imagine what they are going through.

Ginny Williams said...

Dawn, like many of your readers I met Mimi and JuJu through you. Thank you for helping to bring them into my life. The tears haven't stopped since last weekend, I have sat at my computer unable to see the screen yet I force myself to keep reading.
I too wore Yellow today, and at 11am Texas time I stopped and said a prayer for the Avery family, asking God for strength for them. I then called my 12 year old son away from the table (we homeschool) and just hugged him. we took the day off of school and just played hooky together.
again Dawn, thank you for bringing this wonderful family into my life.
proud mama of my preteen
Ginny

nebraska said...

My baby died in a car accident when she was 25. That bathroom floor piece really touched me, it expressed a mother's grief so well! Thank you for sharing Mimi and Julian with us.

Anonymous said...

One of my kindergarten students was killed in a tragic accident 2 years ago today. She had just turned 6. I managed to make it through the anniversary today just to come home and read about Julian's funeral. Lives like Kaitlyn's and Julian's touch you and you're never the same. All we can do is feel lucky we knew them and keep the memories in our hearts.

WendyK said...

My prayers are with Julian's family. Though I have never lost a child to cancer, I do have one that is currently in treatment for it. The thought of losing him scares me beyond belief. Mimi is such an inspiration, and little Julian was truly a warrior who fought bravely to the end. Heaven gained a beautiful angel.

korkie said...

My heart ached so badly the first time I read the words you quoted from Mimi's post.
I didn't think I could feel that much heartache again.
Reading her words again on your posts has reopened the tear in my heart.

Each time I received a notice of an update Julian's World I would hesitate. I would tell myself I should not invest some much love, so much heartache, so much empathy in someone I don't even know.

Yet each day I would enter the little guy's world. I would read Mimi's words, look at Julian's pictures, and leave a piece of my heart behind when I left.

I am sadder today, my heart hurts more today, but I feel I've come away a more spiritual person today.

Thank you.

Bless you Avery family and friends.
May your Creator give you the strength and peace to continue on your journey. May your broken heart begin to heal soon.

Anonymous said...

This is not the way things are supposed to go. My heart breaks for Julian's family.

Melissa said...

Being a mother to 2 young children, I can not even begin to fathom the pain I would feel if I should lose one unexpectedly, not to mention KNOWING it was coming. Mimi is strong and she has all my thoughts and prayers. Bless her and her family and Julian is definately watching over them :)

Kristi said...

My heart breaks for Mimi. I watched my sister lose her son. It's a loss no mother should ever have to bear. Julian and Mimi's story has touched my heart. He has touched more people than she will ever know. My thoughts and prayers are with their family. :(

Anonymous said...

Julian is home with the angels now. He was one of them and his job here was completed. It was to inspire and touch all who met him with the beauty and depth of his spirit and being. The strength, faith and unconditional love of his mom and family have touched us all as well. Thank you Julian and thank you Mimi for sharing him, and yourself, with us. Many blessings and hugs to you and much love as well.

Valerie G said...

I began to follow Julian's carepage awhile back. I dreaded the day when I would log in and she would tell us he was gone, and sure enough, I bawled like a baby. I feel like I know this family, and I love King Juju. My own son is almost the age Julian was when he was diagnosed and I cannot imagine the pain that Mimi and her family is has gone through seeing him in pain and is going through now without him. I admire her faith in the Lord and my prayers are with them.
Reminds me to hug a little longer while I can, to spend some more time with my son.

Anonymous said...

Dawn, I would never have known about JuJu if you hadn't brought him to my attention. I chose to be a part of Mimi's support group through CarePages - it has not been easy. There have been a couple of times that I have felt like running the other way so that I did not have to feel such grief. But then, I'd think about Mimi and how she couldn't run away from this - that she had to face this nightmare; a nightmare that could happen to any one of us. So I rode the rollercoaster as best I could. Has it been difficult - yes. Has it changed me -yes, and for the better. This has deepened my soul and made me think about what is really important. Number one - God and number two - family. I've learned to love without reserve. I've learned to cry in front of my children and I've shared with them my feelings about Julian and what has happened. I still cry everytime I think about Julian dying. As much as I want him back I know Mimi wants him back a million times more.

Thank you, Dawn, for your part in all this.

Michigan

Valarie said...

My heart aches for the entire Avery family. They seem to be such a strong family and it is obvious that they all love each other so much. Julian is with God now and I am sure he is being taken care of.

Heather said...

I'm so sorry for their loss. Reading the quote from Mimi put me in tears as it did everyone else. I can't fathom having to go through that. My prayers are with their family.

Loving Her Beautiful said...

As a father myself, I can't even begin to think about what this is like -- I just can't go there at all. Thank you so much for sharing this, and my awe goes to Mimi, for finding the light to follow in the laughter of her other boys. You're a hero, Mimi.
Blessings,
BILL

Beautifully Chaotic said...

I cant remember the last time I cried so hard. I cant remember the last time my arms ached to hold someone so much. The thoughts just cause my heart to jump into my throat the the tears to fall into the corners of my mouth.

How I wish to hold Mimi, how I wish I could have just once held Ju in just more then my prayers...

Thank you Dawn, for bringing them into my life...into my prayers...where they shall stay.

xoxo God Bless you.

I_Am_Who_I_Am said...

There's a song we sing at the end of nearly every LDS(Mormon) funeral that touches my heart every time I hear it;

God Be with You 'Til We Meet Again


(1)God be with you 'til we meet again,

By His counsels guide, uphold you,

With His sheep securely fold you:

God be with you 'til we meet again.



(2) God be with you 'til we meet again,

'Neath His wings protecting hide you,

Daily manna still provide you:

God be with you 'til we meet again.



(3) God be with you 'til we meet again,

If life's trials should confound you,

God will put His arms around you:

God be with you 'til we meet again.



(4) God be with you 'til we meet again,

Keep love's banner floating o'er you,

Smite death's threat'ning wave before you:

God be with you 'til we meet again.


God be with you Avery Family, God be with you!

Elaina said...

My heart is just broken for her. I cannot imagine her strength. No family should ever have to go through this. Much love going out to her and her family.

Mabunny said...

I too am brought to tears with Mimi's updates, but am so inspired by her staying power and devotion.
I was sick yesterday or I probably would have gone to the viewing /funeral, as it was only about 45 minutes from my house.

Mabunny

Miller's Momma said...

Oh Mimi, my sister. I love you and your pain is heavy in my heart. I want him back too. I live in Austin but if I could I would hold you 'too tight'. I pray to God for your strength, and your peace. Although we have never met, we are bonded as mothers and as children of God. You are special. You were chosen for this great journey with Julian. You are blessed. Sending love and prayers your way...

Love, Stephanie

Anonymous said...

Besides the pain that Julian was in and his tremendous courage, the most striking words that I have read in her posts are that of appreciation for what you have and for every moment you share with you kids. She is right, even f they are sleeping they know. I returned home from Bunko last Friday evening, gave each one a kiss and told them I loved them. All three made some type of moment or sound when I did this. I can't imagine what she is and has gone through. My thougths and prayers go out to her family.

Blue Skies said...

Dawn, there is nothing that grabs the heart like the untimely illness and death of a child. You are a blessed person that through your blog you can increase the number of prayers offered for the Avery family. That is what this blog-forum is perfect for! Consider us another family that has been/will continue to pray.

I finally grabbed a post card for your geography project. I noticed the WEST coast of Florida was consipicuously unrepresented. Ours will have the gentle manatee on the front.

Erin and Justin said...

I know I'm not a mother but I feel for Mimi and her family as they go through this terrible time. My brother only lived 28 days. It still amazes me that he would be 16 years old next week. I was only 6 when he passed but I still remember it very vividly. My prayers go out to their family. Just lean on the Lord and he will get you through this and remember the wonderful times that God allowed you to have with Juju. I can imagine him now laughing and playing in heaven. Mimi- just remember that when you hear your other boys laugh.

Thoughts, prayers, and hugs,
Erin

Working Dad said...

As we pray for Mimi and her family, remember Rick from the Rick and Bubba show here in Alabama. His 2 year old drown Saturday. You can learn all about it at www.rickandbubba.com I'm just a fan and thought you guys could help lift that family also. Thanks.

Janci said...

Haven't commented on your blog before, but I felt I needed to now. I wanted to say thank you for introducing me to Julian and Mimi. I have been in tears nearly every day since I found out he had passed. It is amazing he has touched so many lives, and Mimi truly is an inspiration. She has caused me to evaluate my own life and my own faith deeply. I have even posted about them today on my own blog (http://jsaga.blogspot.com/). Hugging my daughter (almost 4) a little tighter now, and keeping Mimi and her family in my thoughts and prayers.

Anonymous said...

Dawn,
Please tell Mimi not to stop posting! She mentioned that she needed to decide what to do with the carepage. I understand she might need to close it, but I know her Julian's world readers would follow her to her own blog. We love her and still want to hear from her!
Julie, Pennsylvania

Karla with a K said...

Dawn,
Thanks for introducing all of us to the Avery family. And to Mimi, thank you for sharing your tremendous faith in our Father. I have been made a better mom from what you have taught me. For that I am grateful.
Julian and his family are forever in our daily prayers.

God Bless your family - from Karla's family

Kathy said...

Thank you for sharing, that is so sad and so real at the same time. I am so sorry for their loss, but amazed at the strenth!

www.kathy-iamwhoiam.blogspot.com

Debi said...

I can hardly breathe when I read this. I just can not imagine their pain. My prayers go out to them, which just seems like such a fluffy thing to say but I don't know what else TO say. I know God hears us, loves us, never leaves us, has a reason for all things that happen in our life...and that is all I have to hold on to when things like this happen..but that's big!

God bless Missy.

tammy b said...

sob

C said...

My littlest brother died 27 and a half years ago at three and a half. I'm sure my mother could have written the same.

Blessings to Mimi and family. Thank you for sharing her story.

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