Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve

It's hard  to believe that already  Christmas Eve is here. The meat pies smell delightful and the house looks like Christmas. The new  tree adorns the living room and the many old and new  ornaments hang gracefully. The theme is red, gold and green. Jules  and I decided to keep it very traditional this year.

Each Christmas brings the fond memories of Christmas past....when the girls were young and excited for Santa to make his arrival. That tradition will carry its way to Kim and her family. Paige is still too young but it does excite me to know that we still have a few years before she  re discovers who puts the gifts under the tree. It's her first Christmas and that being said reminds me of Kelly-Anne and Kim's first Christmas.

It has been a busy time for me at the office....and with each customer these past few days have brought me  more than just a special joy, but a joy of peace and hope for the future.  I held a child in my arms yesterday who is three years old and has an disease that cannot be cured. The father joyfully took a picture of us together with her new bear. The parents were  true examples of the love of Christ which shone through them. It  was  tough holding back the  tears. I  felt the lump in my throat but prayed to be strong.

We are soon off to church to see friends and new acquaintances. The dinner parties have already started and of course my bathroom scale is not cooperating with me. I guess a couple of  pounds over the holidays is not the end of the world.

Tonight I pray for peace in the world. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and to those not observing I wish  you joy throughout this season........and to all a good night.


Thursday, November 28, 2013

34

Kelly-Anne would of been 34 years old today. The prime of her life...enjoying her family, friends and an aspiring career. Living her dream.....traveling and probably spending today being American Thanksgiving with her best friend Rachel.

I cried this past week as I heard the news of another senseless murder of Sherri Thomas in Montreal. Her story, identical to Kelly-Anne's brought me back  nine years. Why  did this young  girl have to face the same fate as Kelly-Anne....her story, like Kelly-Anne's leaves me with so much pain.

Kell... I know you are at peace and I know you  have created miracles for your family. You have watched over us and  allowed us to have new joy with your niece.

Happy Birthday my baby.

Love,
Mom xxxxx

Friday, October 25, 2013

Continuing the Legacy with God's Help

Thanksgiving weekend was truly one of thanksgiving. We  baptised into God's Holy Church our granddaughter. She looked  like a  true gift from God....so beautiful, alert, and joyful. I could not contain myself in church. There were too many emotions as it suddenly  hit me like a bolt of lightening, that  our granddaughter is the image of Kelly-Anne at that same age. That night I browsed through pictures of Kelly-Anne's baptism and realized that the baby was an actual clone of Kelly-Anne. How is this possible I asked myself. I sent  a picture of  Kelly-Anne next to the baby's picture to   relatives and friends  and they all agreed with me...awesome...but really what I can only say is that God allowed the soul of Kelly-Anne to be placed in our granddaughter. There is no other explanation for this. This is His gift to us, His  creation and His message. That child has already been blessed and having her is a blessing to us.

After the baptism and luncheon, she and her  parents came to our home for Thanksgiving  dinner. Needless to say, we were all exhausted but still enjoyed the turkey and all the trimmings. The baby's supper consisted  of mashed squash and apple sauce. Once a spoonful is given to her, there is not stopping. She just loves to eat !  She reminds me so much of the girls when they first started to  eat food...especially Kelly-Anne who always ate more than Kim.

Even today, I continue ponder about how the baby will develop, what  kind of  a little girl will she be...so far we know that she will be a  happy loving child...a child of God, a child who I  know will  go to Sunday school and learn about her faith and why she was baptized. She will one day make  her own decisions about her faith and have her own personal relationship with God.

Also, she will one day come to know who her Auntie  Kelly-Anne was. Her family will see more traits of  Kelly-Anne, her mother and father in  her. I can only believe that with God's help and protection, our baby will have a beautiful life ahead of her, surrounded by her loving  family and friends. She  and all  of us are truly blessed. Her  life has brought  us such joy in knowing that Kelly-Anne lives on in this child of God.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Today

I awoke in the early hours of the morning and saw an email from a  close friend. She wrote that she was  thinking of Kelly-Anne and wished her eternal memory. She  then mentioned as if she was writing to Kelly-Anne how her family have kept her memory alive and that she will never be  forgotten. I fell back to  sleep and  felt cradled under my comforter, that my daughter was near by.

I spoke with another close friend yesterday who reminded me of all the good things that have happened to me in the past  nine years. The biggest highlight is the new birth of our granddaughter. She has and will continue to bring joy and happiness to our lives.

Today I decided that I wanted a normal day....a quiet one of reflection, of joy and remembrance. Yes  remembering Kelly-Anne as the faithful, loving daughter, but also remembering those who still suffer from domestic violence. I know that there are still women out  there who are living in fear, who know that they should not be in the relationship that they are presently in, but feel that they have no other recourse. I ask that if you know someone  who is in this situation, please reach  out....you may be saving a life.

 I am also thinking of  the upcoming baptism. Last minute preparations are on the way. That will keep me busy today. I am also sadden that certain family members will not be there. Next week we will also remember family members living in Heaven with Kelly-Anne who are very missed at this time.

Our granddaughter will learn one day about Kelly-Anne and her legacy. I know this baby will make a change in the world. 

Each time I  look at a picture of her, I am reminded of Kelly-Anne. I am reminded that  there is hope for the future and that the only thing I can do is continue to forge forward and live. It is the least I can do to honor my daughter, Kelly-Anne. Memory eternal!



Friday, October 4, 2013

Deep in the Stars

" There are moments in life when you miss someone so much that  you just want to pick them from your dreams and hug them for real."


                                                                                                         Charlie Brown

Sunday, September 29, 2013

October

The young maple trees in front of our house have changed color this past week. Today, the bright golden colors of the leaves shone as the sun casted over the trees. A warm sunny fall day, much like nine years ago when we lost Kelly-Anne. I realized today that next Saturday is October 5th. My goodness time is passing too quickly.

I reflected today about my life and all that has happened during the past nine years. Too much has gone on.....good stuff and not good stuff.....learning to adapt to life without Kell has been the biggest challenge of my life. I  thought about  new friends that I have made; people who never  new Kell...but they felt that they did  know her. I thought about old friends who are no longer in my life.
People change....they say that happens after a death.

I started to make a mental list of the challenges and events that have happened. I realize that Kell has been a part of everything in some way even from Heaven. She has a way of sending me messages.

Just last week I found out that a man I had met last year was very upset when he heard of Kell's death. He did not know that I was her mother nor did I know that it was his daughter, a police officer who was first on the crime scene on Oct.3rd. It seems that Kelly-Anne has been never forgotten. People remember that  she was murdered. I  still bump into  people who ask  me if  I was the  women on t.v.or if I am Kelly-Anne's mother.

As I have mentioned in previous posts, Kell is very much alive in  my dreams. I  don't think I ever dreamt  as much as I have during the past nine years. I have  felt her presence in our house,  and  if Sylvester  could talk, he would confirm that Kell has been here.

Our family was  blessed with a granddaughter which we will baptised this Thanksgiving weekend. Nine years ago we buried Kelly-Anne and this year we will rejoice on Thanksgiving for this precious gift. The more I look at the baby, I see Kelly-Anne. Her ears are just like Kell's. Even though  the baby looks like her father, there is definitely Kelly-Anne there  too.

Our spiritual  journey is very important to myself and Jules. He started a new job in Ontario  this  past July. He comes  home after a very long shift and recounts to me stories about his colleagues. We agreed that everyone has a story but interestingly the dynamics and culture  are so different than what he experienced  in his  last job here in Quebec. As I said to him over lunch today, you  were meant to be where you are.. in that company and in that town. I can only believe that Kelly-Anne played a  role with God that Jules be where he is today. I can also only believe that  I am  where I am suppose to be . Changes will always  happen  in our lives, but we both have a clearer understanding of how to accept and deal with change. After going through a horrific loss, everything else we have faced or will face is peanuts.

Kelly-Anne still guides us. She  helps me  make decisions, she helps me swim in water that I once feared. She watches over her sister and the baby. Today I can say that everything happens for a reason. Was Kelly-Anne's work on  earth completed when she died? I have a hard time to believe that  is was....but she did leave a legacy....and she will never be forgotten.

She has given me the courage to forge forward, to get out of bed and embrace the day. I do not need cigarettes, drugs or liquor to get through the day. I am surrounded by love and I know that Kell is not far.....she has never left me.

As the season changes,  Jules and I will  start the process to move out of Quebec. We know where we belong...we have given it  much  serious thought and  the writing is on the wall. I feel Kell has  helped us  come to that point. We will have another challenge to relocate. We  look forward to the move and know that Kell will find our  home. She knows she is always welcomed.

As we remember Kell this week, lets also remember her smile, her infectious  laughter, her kind and loving  heart. She  still is a wonderful daughter, sister, friend  and now an aunt....even from Heaven.

Love you forever.xxxxxx

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Forgiveness

Often I have been asked if I have forgiven Kelly-Anne's murderer. My answer remains the same....NO. "My heart  does not allow myself at this time to  forgive someone who  has not shown any accountability nor responsibility got this heinous  crime." However, I have forgiven someone else. That person is myself. I have finally come to the realization  that I have been carrying around alot of guilt for not being a better mother and for not  seeing the signs and getting my daughter out of her situation. Why didn't I save my daughter from him ?

This evening, I  realize that  I was a good mother to an adult daughter and that I did not  put a knife in my daughter's  brain stem. Only one person did that and he is now in  prison....hopefully for the rest of his life. For me to continue to move forward I must forgive myself.

How often in our lives do we question how we were brought  up. I  view my own upbringing in a  way that  my parents  brought me up the best way they knew how. It  was in some ways  different that how I brought  up my girls. And that is okay as we have evolved differently through the  generations.

I knew very little about domestic abuse in 2004. Today I know and understand more. Kelly-Anne always knew I was there for her, but being a victim at the hands of her abuser prevented her from being open about her situation.  I know now that that was not my fault. I can no longer say I should of known better......

I forgive myself.......another journey starts tonight. 

Friday, August 16, 2013

Number 4

I wrote in my last  entry about Kelly-Anne's bathing suit with the number 4 on  it. This evening as I cleaned up a book shelf,  I came across a book about dreams. I found a piece referring to the  meaning of  the number 4. Here it is:

  The symbolic meaning of number Four deals with stability and invokes the grounded nature of all things. Consider the four seasons, four directions, four elements all these amazingly powerful essences wrapped up in the nice square package of Four. Fours represent solidity, calmness, and home. A recurrence of Four in your life may signify the need to get back to your roots, center yourself, or even "plant" yourself. Fours also indicate a need for persistence and endurance. 

How amazing and symbolic all this means to me. In the past couple of years I have returned to a more  rooted, basic lifestyle. Since  last December I have seeked more calmness in my life  by avoiding those who emit negative energy. My home has become more of  the hub....a place of  not  just four walls. I have centered  myself with more discipline and feel very  grounded in myself on a personal and business level.

Kelly-Anne was just giving me a reminder that I am on the right path. She knew I would eventually figure out what the number 4 meant and is probably giggling away as I write this message.

It just goes to  show that  our loved ones who have departed have a way of sending us messages through dreams. It is for us to be opened to read through the lines and understand that the message may not always be immediately clear, but at some point it  eventually will have great  meaning once the puzzle is completed.

I am Always with You

A few weeks agao  I had again the strangest dream. Kelly-Anne seems to be everywhere these days but this dream  left me with a very soothing message.

It was winter and we were on a  chartered bus in a  shopping mall parking lot. Kelly-Anne turned to me and said that she forgot her bathing suit at the pool and that we had to go quickly to  retrieve it from the bottom of the pool. We  got off the bus and ran to the  pool. Her bathing suit with the number 4 on it was  in clear view but at the bottom of the pool. She asked me to get it, but I hestated as I said I could not swim down that  far. Somehow I  leaned over the pool and  picked up the bathing suit...that in my dream was not clear, but I did  have it in my hands. We ran  back to were the bus was only to see that it had departed. We stood there in the parking lot alone together and realized that my car , a black one was parked  nearby. We got in the car and drove away.

Strange as it is, I woke up from that dream and realized again that  she is always with me... we only needed each  other. I retrieved her bathing suit with her help and even though the bus  left without us we still managed to find transportation.

Just wanted to share this with you........I feel inspired , reassured and happy that Kelly-Anne  finds her way into my life on a daily basis to encourage and help me.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

On a Cloud

Getting back into the daily routine was very hard after spending time in Alberta visiting our  granddaughter. Ah, what a joy and a blessing is she. Saying goodbye at the airport was rough for all of us and even  harder when the plane took off into  mid air. I sat there crying as I knew there was no turning back....you know the movie scenario when the plane is  taxing  on the tarmac and all of a sudden  the plane stops, the  door opens and the beautiful  women steps out and runs down the stairs into the arms of the man she loves. Only in movies...oh I  had  wished that were the case. I just couldn't  get enough of  her cuddles, smiles and oous and ahs.

Everyday she seems to change. People tell me that she has my eyes. I say she now looks like her Dad, but I do see the resemblance  of myself in her eyes. Babies change so quickly.  Kim is constantly stimulating her with music, exercises and even reads to her. Elmo and Dog are her two buddies who hang with her in her stroller and on the floor.

The routine of motherhood has set in for Kim. She is enjoying every minute of her new responsibilities of  nurturing her baby. And what a mom she is! I couldn't be prouder.

Things have changed since I was a  young mother. I was not with Kim a day when she said to me "Mom, why are you questioning everything I do?" I responded  by saying that I am not questioning what she is doing, but questioning how so many things have changed. I wanted her to  know that  I wasn't questioning her personally as she was  doing things the way they are to  be done in 2013. I am still stuck in the 80's with baby and child stuff.

Returning to the hotel each night, I laid in bed thinking of the days events and about how much Kelly-Anne is missed at this time. I look at our granddaughter and see this precious life which gives me hope, strength and courage to continue to forge forward. She has  allowed me to renew my confidence within myself and somehow is telling me that a little  bit of Kelly-Anne lies within her.  Kelly-Anne's niece is telling me to be happy and let go of the pain. Through the tears, I can now smile.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

A Message from a Stranger

A few months ago, I was at my hairdresser getting  a hair revamp if I may call it that. While sitting and waiting  for the dye to settle on my  roots I picked up a conversation with a  women  next to me. For me, it is a common occurrence to  talk to people while at the hairdresser.  The women told me that she was retired from the hospital where Kelly-Anne had  succumb to her wounds. We talked for only  a short while and she told  me a little about her work and  I  told her  how amazing that hospital is but sadly Kelly-Anne could not be saved. It wasn't a long conversation as we both shortly went off to our hair stylist for our cuts.

The lady finished getting her cut  prior to me but before she left the salon she came to where I was  and said," You know we may  never meet again, but I feel that your daughter Kelly-Anne sent me here today to give you a message. I feel that it was meant that we meet  today. I want to give  you her message that she wants you to be happy and to do what  you need to do to move forward." I sat there with tears streaming down my face as my  hairdresser gently patted my arm.

I have not forgotten that moment and feel the same as that lady, that we were meant to meet that day so she could give me a message. I realized that  after that meeting, my life started to  change even more so. Another page was turned  which included more healing and acceptance of Kelly-Anne's  death. It was like a weight was lifted off my  shoulders. I know now that  Kelly-Anne is at peace. She is alright and still continues to watch over all of her family and friends. She knows she is not forgotten. Now I can move forward with my life...to not fear the future, to embrace every day as a new  day, a gift. I am able to say that I love my life, my husband, my daughters, my grandchild, my son -in law, my three crazy feline friends, my human friends and my business and my employees.

Life has fallen into place. I am where I am suppose to be right now. Thank you to the lady delivering that special message from Kelly-Anne. I  do not even know her name, but know that she was sent from Kelly-Anne that day.   Kelly-Anne used this angel on earth to get to me. How wonderful is that !

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Lost For Words

In the early morning of April 2nd our granddaughter made her entrance into our world. Lost for words is how  I can only describe what I felt at that moment. Obviously we knew for the last  nine months that  Kim was going to have a baby, but when the moment of her birth day finally arrived, this little person literally took my breath away. It has taken me since then to sit in front of  my blog to write about her beauty, her body language, her hair and how alert she is. I am in awe and finding the words  to describe how I feel is  really not easy, even now.

Each day I  see new pictures of her....she looks like she loves fashion.....love her little outfits. She shows  us her large  hands and long artistic looking fingers...what is all that about I ask....oh maybe she will play an instrument or  enjoy drawing. Only the future will tell. What I did not expect was the amount of dark hair and how much she looks like Kim when  Kim was born. Seeing my  daughter so blissfully in love  with her baby and her partner brings me so much joy.

Now how do I really feel being a new grandmother........proud, energized, walking  on a cloud. She has changed my life. I am only angry over one thing which has brought me to tears and that is why isn't Kelly-Anne not here to share this moment with us. So not  right...just imagine if she were with us on earth, Kell would have stopped what ever she was  doing,  hopped on a plane and surprised Kim.  Kell  would of embraced this occasion in  her own special way. I know Kelly-Anne knows that she is an auntie now and I know she is watching over the baby. But my heart is still in pain. 

I rejoice that my granddaughter is healthy, that she is loved and surrounded by wonderful people. Jules  and I look forward to our  trip out west this spring. We can't wait to take her shopping....baby needs to learn at a young age how to shop for a bargain !

I feel now I can relate to all the new grandmothers - to -be who come into my office on a daily basis. They are so excited to have a first hand peek of  their grandchild. New birth, new life, such a beautiful gift to be appreciated, to be love and respected.

I am embracing the time I have with my granddaughter. I am proud of Kim and know she and  her partner will be exceptional parents. Oh how motherhood and grandmother hood  can change you...I have truly won the lotto !!

Monday, March 25, 2013

40 Weeks

I laid in bed  last night thinking about Kim and the soon to be arrival of  the baby. 40 weeks has finally arrived and it seems that the baby is not  quite ready to come out and face the world.  Alot has been going through my mind about how Kim's labour will  be. She said something very profound to me a few weeks ago....something that I  support and truly believe in as I  use the same thinking in facing life's challenges.

We were talking about labour  and how my labour was when I was  giving birth to  Kim. Kim said that she would  have a natural  birth with no meds. She said she had  passed through the worst pain in her  life so this was going to be easy. I was so proud to hear those words from her  as  I have adopted that thinking after loosing my job after 28  years of service back in 2009.  A sudden homicide of a loved one is the worst thing anyone could go through, so whatever happens  later in life that seems dramatic, for me  can be dealt with much easier. I passed a colonoscopy a few years ago with no meds. The doctor  kept on offering and I kept on refusing. I said to him and the nurses that  I had already passed the worst pain in my life so this would be peanuts as compared to the pain Kelly-Anne had suffered.

Jules and I both faced job losses and we both continued to forge forward. Yes I did find my  dream job and Jules continues with much  gusto even with  doors closing in front of him. He is so resilient.

I know this week will be a life changing week for our family especially for Kim and her boyfriend. A new life filled with adventures, joys, tears....motherhood and fatherhood.

As we approach  Passover and Easter, I find it fitting that new life in our family happens this week. Irony.........or maybe Kelly-Anne again is using her angel powers.

Blessings to all of you !


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Page Project

The pages of our life tell the story of how we would like to be remembered. After much soul searching, I finally came  up with an idea of what I  could do for my new granddaughter. I wanted her to have something that would last forever, something that she could use and  bring to life which would  fill her with  fond memories and allow her to continue our legacy even after I leave this  world.

Because I have a love of cooking, I decided to create a  scrapbook of recipes  old and new. Recipes that  go back to when Kelly-Anne and Kim were little girls. I have divided the book into many sections and have  joyfully created interesting projects  with colorful pictures such as a little girl's tea party that she could do at some point. There is a section on our Lebanese heritage including Kim's favorite Lebanese  dish...kibbe balls ! There is also a roast beef recipe that Kell loved. She could  cook up a storm. Kim, since being away has  become very creative in her cooking style. She has sent me many pictures of her beautiful platters, especially her appetizers.

Cooking with children has to one of the most fun things to do. I know that Kim will take the time with her daughter  to teach her the many techniques that she  has.  Creating this book has brought my emotions to the surface. Looking back at some of my hand written recipes which are included in the the  book, remind me of the style of cooking and fun recipes that the  girls looked forward  to. One thing for sure, I never had a problem getting the girls to try something different....they may of not particularly enjoyed  the meal, but at least they gave it a shot. I hope my granddaughter grows  up with an apprecitation and a curiosity for food.  

The book is not yet completed. I don't think baby will be needed it any time soon.......the Page Project is a work in progress with an abundance of love poured into it.



Friday, February 1, 2013

February Already !

I have  just been reminded that we are  already at February 1st....what happened to January, I asked myself early this morning. Time seems to be going at a speed  that is faster that I can keep up with. It has been busy at work with  the challenges of renovating the office and dealing with contractors and sub contractors  which is a totally  new phenomena for  me. I  have learnt that there is lot of politics involved....mostly he said, she said stuff....all nonsense. At the end of the day, I just want a
nice welcoming and  functional office for the many clients who visit us.

January also brought me day dreaming especially during a couple of nasty cold weeks about my flip flops who are warmly stored in  my bedroom closet. I have said to many, I  really am a summer person. January brought also many challenges for my hubby. He is actively looking for a job. CV's are sent out  every day and few even get acknowledged. I keep telling him the right  job will be  yours at the right  time and that  Kelly-Anne will help you. Jules had been bored and even attempted to cook a meal or two..... the effort was there and I  graciously ate the meals...Enough said on that....

Somethings that I hoped would change for 2013 like  homicides, however have not. Another women has been murdered in Montreal last  night. Apparently she was stabbed. Earlier in January we learnt that a 12 year old boy killed his 16 year old brother with a gun.  Why I ask did this child have access to a gun....everyone has  a different take on who really is responsible for the  murder.

Looking forward to the rest of this month reminds that this is the month of love....well every month should be the month of love for that matter. But for myself and my hubby, we will celebrate our 6th wedding anniversary. We also look forward in anticipation of Jules becoming employed...we are being positive that he will find the right job. Next week I will take a few days off and pretend it is summer.....meaning if you are looking for me, you can find me swimming in a local pool. It is time for me to unwind and reflect. The water has an amazing effect on me.

Jules and I  have both been havng crazy dreams....but  I did have one beautiful dream. I dreamt I was  holding my new granddaughter. She was wearing a blue and white stripped  knitted  hat in the dream....so I am wondering if Kim will have  a little surprise of her own when the baby is born. Let's wait and see!

Wishing all of you  a happy February. Do whatever you choose to make the month an exciting time.