Mattie Miracle 8th Annual Walk & Family Festival was an $88,000 Success!!!

Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation Promotional Video

Thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive!

Dear Mattie Blog Readers,

It means a great deal to us that you take the time to write to us and to share your thoughts, feelings, and reflections on Mattie's battle and death. Your messages are very meaningful to us and help support us through very challenging times. To you we are forever grateful. As my readers know, I promised to write the blog for a year after Mattie's death, which would mean that I could technically stop writing on September 9, 2010. However, at the moment, I feel like our journey with grief still needs to be processed and fortunately I have a willing support network still committed to reading. Therefore, the blog continues on. If I should find the need to stop writing, I assure you I will give you advanced notice. In the mean time, thank you for reading, thank you for having the courage to share this journey with us, and most importantly thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive.


As Mattie would say, Ooga Booga (meaning, I LOVE YOU)! Vicki and Peter



The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation celebrates its 7th anniversary!

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation was created in the honor of Mattie.

We are a 501(c)(3) Public Charity. We are dedicated to increasing childhood cancer awareness, education, advocacy, research and psychosocial support services to children, their families and medical personnel. Children and their families will be supported throughout the cancer treatment journey, to ensure access to quality psychosocial and mental health care, and to enable children to cope with cancer so they can lead happy and productive lives. Please visit the website at: www.mattiemiracle.com and take some time to explore the site.

We have only gotten this far because of people like yourself, who have supported us through thick and thin. So thank you for your continued support and caring, and remember:

.... Let's Make the Miracle Happen and Stomp Out Childhood Cancer!

A Remembrance Video of Mattie

Random Shots of Mattie, Family and Friends

December 25, 2016

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Tonight's picture was taken on Christmas of 2008. This was Mattie's last Christmas with us. He was home between treatments and was absolutely miserable. He was dealing with bone pain, great physical disabilities, and on top of all of that was developing clinical depression and medical traumatic stress. Despite my numerous conversations with his doctors, all of them believed Mattie's issues were physical (e.g., a reaction to the pain meds he was taking was one explanation I was given) rather than psychological. Post-Christmas when Mattie had a full blown meltdown in the clinic,  his doctors finally understand what Peter and I were coping with at home. Mattie acted like a soldier who had just come back from a war. He wanted to be around NO NOISE, did not want us touching him for the most part, had terrible nightmares that woke all of us up, and was easily agitated and anxious. Though this photo may portray a happy moment, I assure you it was fleeting. Mattie was very unhappy and depressed throughout Christmas. Which was why Peter put on these funny noses and hats to try to distract Mattie and redirect his mood. It worked for a couple of minutes. But it was a Christmas that I will never forget and frankly it clouds any of our Christmases to come. 



Quote of the day: Gifts of time and love are surely the basic ingredients of a truly merry Christmas.  Peg Bracken



Let me put Christmas into context. Peter and I celebrated 7 Christmases with Mattie. As of today, we have had to acknowledge 8 Christmases without Mattie. This is a reality that may not sound significant to our readers, but to a parent who lost a child, these numbers are devastating. Time doesn't heal all wounds, but in fact can make them more challenging to deal with, because as time goes on, I struggle to remember my life with Mattie. I struggle to remember subtleties about him, something a parent wouldn't have the opportunity to do with a child who is physically present. 

Yet how do you celebrate Christmas when you lost your only child? I may look like I am present and in the moment, but there are many aspects that I truly don't enjoy anymore. Such as family gatherings at holidays, watching children of all ages opening gifts and the list goes on. It is a constant battle within to live in the real world with others all around me who do not understand these feelings. Where I find the inner strength and maturity to hear about other children, to watch them celebrate, knowing that I do not get any of these opportunities with Mattie is beyond me. In some of these moments I want to explode, but my self control is excellent because the feelings only smolder inside. 


This is a photo of Sunny I took this morning with his Christmas scarf on!


 The three of us.
Our nephew Will with Sunny. Will loves dogs and these two had a good time together today. 













Peter's family at Christmas. From left to right:

Will (our nephew -- only about 15 months older than Mattie), Nat (our nephew), Chris (Peter's brother), Don (Peter's dad), Barbara (Peter's mom), Lisa (my sister in law), me, and Sydney (our niece). 
Last night while driving around we came across two houses light up for Christmas in a significant way. The two houses were next door neighbors and between the two of them the street lit up like a Christmas tree. Can you see the hot air balloons Christmas light displays?
The house above is located right next to this house. I personally preferred this one, but I must admit from a WOW standpoint the house above was noteworthy!

1 comment:

Margy Jost said...

Vicki, I read this post first on Christmas night. So many thoughts twirled in my head. I so wanted to write something meaningful about the honestly of this post and how much it's' truth touched my heart. The forever loss of a child can not be brushed away or left out of family gatherings. They are missing from every minute of every day. Your honesty about how others act is so important for people to know.
Society as a whole tries to wipe away or ignore the truly horrible losses in life. All this does is isolate people.
I thought often on the 25th of you & Peter, Kimber's family, Karen's family as well as the families of Catherine & Alexis all navigating through this day, remembering just how much they lost, never to get it back. I just want you to know I remembered and it mattered to me a lot!