Update: My heart is heavy

12/13/2007 at 04:50 PM ET

Aunt Claire with Anya, around 2 weeks old.
The blanket Aunt Claire made Anya (Josh and I at my shower).Aunt_claire_blanket
The funeral is Friday morning and we will be sitting shiva through next week.  I’m doing a lot better but please keep my uncle, my cousins and their families, my mother and her brother in your thoughts.  They are glad her pain is over but they miss her so much already and are hurting.

Click below for the original post and prior updates.

Update 12/12 3 pm: (Sarah’s note: Danielle asked me to post this for her; obviously she’s with her family at this time.)

My aunt Claire died at about 2:10 pm today, surrounded by her 3children and husband. I got to see her, hold her hand, read her myletter and tell her how much I loved her. She was conscious and had hereyes closed but she heard and understood everything. She actuallyopened her eyes and tried to raise her hand.

She’s free now and my heart is at peace.

Thank you to everyone for your kind comments and emails.

Update on the Update: My uncle told my mother that I can visit for a few minutes!  We’re leaving around 10.

Update December 12th: It doesn’t look like I’ll be able tovisit at all.  I’m not sure if it’s her family’s decision or herwishes, but she doesn’t want to see anyone at all.  My mother is goingto visit this morning.  I told her that I would accompany her for theride but she doesn’t think I should.  Since I posted this and readeveryone’s comments and emails and talked to a number of people, Ithink I’ve resolved inside myself that it’s best for her to pass asquickly as possible because this is not living.  She is not the womanwe all knew and loved.  Though the pain medicine will ensure she is notsuffering, her body is dying and this is just a waiting game.  No onewants to see her like this but it’s so hard to let go of thiswonderful, loving woman. It’s really true what they say about takingpeople for granted untilthey pass and I feel like I have learned a painful lesson with herillness.

Angela and some readers suggested I write her a letter and hopefully my mother can read it to her this morning so here goes.

Dear Aunt Claire,

I love you.  I can’t imagine a world without you.  I really wanted tosee you to say goodbye but it looks like that will not be possible. Ifelt like I needed to visit you, especially after you’ve come to everysingle play I’ve been in and been to every one of my graduations andsent us cards for every single occasion. I wanted to hold your hand andkiss you and tell you these words but I know you know that I love youfiercely. So I hope that by writing you this letter that I will havethe chance to tell you some of what is in my heart. 

You have been such a significant part of my life and meant so muchthat I don’t think I’ll realize the tremendous loss fully for years tocome. I can’t imagine our family without you- the mother hen, hoveringnear her chicks, making sure they have everything they need, protectingthem, but letting them wander on their own.  You’ve loved my mother andtook such care of her her entire life, you’ve loved all of yourchildren and Uncle Bob and your grandchildren, you’ve loved yourfriends and their families, and you’ve loved me and Justin, youwelcomed and loved Josh and Anya. I want you to know that I may haverarely said it but I loved you so much all of this time and of course Ialways will.

There’s a fog over my world now and I can’t imagine how it will everlift.  I know it will eventually and that in our pain, the family willhonor you by knitting ourselves even closer together. While my mom andHarry look after Uncle Bob, I will do my best to lookafter the girls.  I adore them so much and am so proud of the beautifulstrong young women they are growing up to be.

I am so proud of you for making the decision to go into hospice.Your bravery and dignity even in these last days will be the legacy Ihope to pass on to Anya.  She is such a bright shining light in my lifeand I am so glad that you got to know her.  Her patience, kindness andcompassion resonates so strongly in our lives.  Josh and Anya love youso much too.  Anya loves her Aunt Claire blanketand I am so honored that you made it for her; it is something that shewill always have and that we will talk about, like Aunt Sophie’s applestruedel.

I wish you so much peace and serenity. 

luv ya,

I have been passionate about the Celebrity Baby Blog ever since I created it but this week my heart is in a different place. 

My aunt, my mother’s older sister, is dying.  She has lung cancerthat was only diagnosed in October and as of last week, she was havingchemo but she decided she doesn’t want to continue and they are movingher into hospice this week.  I feel so terrible and she hasn’t evendied yet.  My heart is so heavy.  I can’t even imagine what it mustfeel like to lose a parent or sibling or worse, a child.  My aunt haslost two of the three at a very young age.  I normally don’t believe inan afterlife, but the only thing that brings me any relief is toimagine my aunt rejoining her newborn daughter and her parents in somekind of spiritual or energy afterlife.

I kind of thought this was going to drag on a while and that I’dhave enough time for all of us to get over our colds (all of us), strepthroat (me), pneumonia (Anya) and visit and now that we’re all better,I don’t even know if or when I’ll be allowed to visit her.  I realizethat I want to see her and say goodbye and that it’s all about my needbut I still want to see her one last time at least.

Can anything make you feel better when you are losing someone who is close? 


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Martha on

Your heart is heavy with good cause and reason: you are already feeling the loss of your beloved aunt.

Get yourself healthy first so you can visit her. Take all your antibiotics and get rest. And, once you are well again, make a beeline to her.

Tell her what she means to you. All of it. Let her know how much you love her. Hold her.

I lost my pop to lung cancer in 1991. I still miss him but the pain does lessen. In time you will remember your loved one not with tears but with smiles.

I promise.

Jodi on

I read your site daily and I love it. This was a hard year for my family actually a hard few years. We lost my uncle to lung cancer last year and in Feb. my dad was diagnosed with stage 4 non operable terminal lung cancer. He was never a smoker and we were completely shocked by the diagnosis. We went through 4 months of hell before we got a second opinion and found he was misdiagnosed. During that four months I had to deal with what your family is. We also work together and are best friends. My dad suffers from a rare disease that mimics cancer but is treatable thank God. I will pray for your family and I know just how bad you all feel. I don’t think there is any way to deal with it other then day by day. Follow her lead and stay as positive as you can. Also, try to cut yourself a break for feeling so down….it’s just part of the process. My uncle was only 52. My aunt misses him everyday but it does get easier.


Loralee on

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time. My father died of lung cancer almost 9 years ago-hard to believe it’s been so long. My daughter was six months old, son 2 1/2 and my other son was born the next year. We always say he played with grandpa in heaven. We have pictures of him with my daughter studying his face. His illness was short, but we are grateful it did not spread further than it did before he died. Time is the only healer and both memories and time dull the pain. Celebrate her life.

Stef on

Today would have been my parent’s 30th anniversary. Three years ago, I got to eyewitness my dad’s battle with cancer from start to finish. Nothing ever makes it easier, you just find ways to distract yourself.

Kristen on

Danielle…my thoughts are with your aunt and your family.

I was in a similar situation this year. In Nov of 06 my father was diagnosed with cancer. Within weeks he went downhill and chemo didn’t seem to help at all. He passed away Feb 2007. I am still griefing in some ways but looking at pictures of him and the wonderful memories he had with my son (who is 9) makes me happy. Also knowing that he isn’t in pain anymore also.

((hugs)) with you

Amy C on

I have had 3 Grandparents die and the only thing that got me through them was my faith in Christ. All three were strong Christians, so I knew they went to heaven. And one day, when I die, I will join them. I am not sure how people who aren’t Christians deal with death… I think of death as Christians going home to eternal peace, happiness, health, rest, and one heck of a party! Life on Earth is meant to be short. Life in heaven is forever!

Jamiek on

My mother in law too has lung cancer. The only real comfort I have ever found is in my child. Death and illness has helped me realize the importance of family. Focusing on my son and cherishing all the little things – allows me to take something good out of something bad. Remember you are lucky… lucky to have your daughter.

melissa on

Danielle, 1st I want to say that my thoughts and prayers are with you and your entire family.
I lost my beloved grandpa in Jan 2001 to Lung Cancer and after losing grandma in 1005 to Cancer, he fought his battle without chemo as well and I truly understand where you are coming from. The only thing that I found that makes it even a little bit bareable is the cherished memories you had with your loved ones. Cherish the time you have left with her, once you are well go visit her tell her you love her and share some of your most cherished times with her.

God Bless

LW on

I lost my grandmother this year. She didn’t have cancer; it was a combination of a lot of illnesses that finally finished her. At first it is hard, because this is someone you love. And it hurts like nothing else, but like all the others have said here: it gets easier. Time really works. Don’t try to stifle your feelings. If you feel like crying, let it out. If you feel lonely, talk to someone about it. That’s what helps the most in a situation like this. With time, you’ll just feel better and it won’t hurt as much.

Sarah on

I understand the hard times you are going through. In September, a friend of mine was killed in a car accident when she was ejected from the car. As a nursing student only 19 years old, she had the world at her fingertips. Now last Saturday, someone (also 19) that I graduated high school with was killed in a car accident when he hit a patch of ice and was ejected from his car.

Try to focus on the positives and not think of the negatives. Don’t dwell on the fact that she will be leaving you, but instead celebrate her life and think of all the great things. I know that around this time it is especially hard, but just know that when she passes, she will still be with you. You can still talk to her, and you will see her in your dreams, you just will not be able to be in physical contact with her. That’s what gets me through the day whenever I look over in class and see my friend’s empty seat. Celebrate her life and enjoy your last days/weeks/months with her. Or you’ll regret you hadn’t later on. I know I regret not giving my friend a hug after class and I hope no one has to go through that feeling.

I will keep you and your family in my prayers.

Charlotte on

I am a fan of your blog and read it daily, and I just wanted to say that I’m sorry to hear about your aunt. It is always hard to handle this type of news about anyone you are close to, I have had many people in my life who have been diagnosed with cancer. When I was growing up my grandfather lived with us during his battle with brain and lung cancer and it was devastating to watch him die, so I can understand the pain you are feeling.

As for if anything can make you feel better: there’s no right answer to that. I had a friend who passed away suddenly over the summer from a fall and her parents said their only comfort was in the support my friends gave to the family. Reach out to your friends and the load will seem a little lighter (as cliche as that sounds). Also, a friend of mine wrote about his experience with his dying grandfather and I have to say I found his reflection comforting as I was coping with my friend’s death. He said that while death could be both scary and ugly, it could also be something beautiful. He was referring to the care that the hospice nurses gave to his grandfather to give him some comfort in his final days. It doesn’t make the process any easier, but I found it comforting to think about the compassion of care others receive while they die.

Michelle on

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time.

My mother-in-law died from bone cancer six years ago and my grandfather died two years ago.

There is really nothing to do to lessen the sadness. It’s normal and OK to be sad because you know what is coming. With my mother-in-law we knew, with my grandfather it was sudden. Both were still extremely difficult to deal with.

But try to always remember the good times and the fun memories. That will help. Sharing those stories and memories with others who love her will help too.

I know it’s tough now because you are sick and can’t see her, but as another poster said, get the rest you need. And remember, you can always call her and let her know that way too.

Hang in there — it will be hard. But each day will get a little easier. There will still be times when you feel the sadness, but you’ll always have your memories that will make you smile. Share lots of stories and pictures with your daughter.

Take care and God bless.

usz on

I lost my grandfather just after my son’s birthday this year. Since most of my family are in Europe, it’s been difficult on our budget to get there and impossible for the funeral. I think it’s times like these when we feel guilt and regret-guilt that we didn’t visit more, talk more, etc. It’s just part of the process.

If you are unable to visit her, talk to her on the phone. Tell her all those things that are in your heart. It may be difficult, but you can both give each other that love as a final gift.

I never had that opportunity as my grandfather had a massive stroke and never woke up. I do have wonderful memories of visits with him, and in my memories and in photos he lives on. I tell my son stories, and I know that he is here with us always.

Hugs and love to your family through this very difficult time. I hope that your aunt finds peace, as do the rest of your family.

Cate on

Danielle, I am so sorry about your aunt. I lost my grandfather last year. It was the first big loss of my life, and it hit me so hard. The truth is, though, that I carry a little piece of him with me always. Sometimes I have a dream about him, sometimes I see something or smell something that reminds me of him and sometimes it’s nothing at all that makes me think of him. She’ll always be with you and your family, and while I know that is hardly comforting, please know that lots of people are thinking about you during this difficult time!

Candy on

In three years time, I experienced the death of my husband, followed by both of my beloved grandparents. I never thought I was an emotionally strong person, but working through these experiences, and continuing their legacies of love within our family, I have found my strength. I wish you much strength in the upcoming weeks.

evelyn Molina on

Danielle so sorry to hear about what you are going thru. I too read you site every day and love how you always make a point to make this a positive and tasteful website. Aunts are special, as a matter of fact I lost my mother when I was very young 24yrs old and in her place I am so lucky to have her twin sister who I love dearly. Hang in there and tell her everything you want her to know because she too sounds special. Take care and God Bless.

Evelyn MIami, Florida

Marie on


You bring happiness to so many people through CBB. I’m sorry you are hurting.

What has helped me through losing a loved one is simply remembering that this is the natural cycle of life. We all have such a short amount of time on this planet. When our time is up, it’s up, no rhyme or reason.

So hug Anya an extra time today. Tell your husband how much you appreciate him. Make the most out of every day that you have with your family, and in doing so, you honor your aunt.

Be well, Danielle. Physically and emotionally. Close your eyes and take some deep breaths when you need to. I wish you strength and peace.

Take care,

Melanie on

I’m so sorry to read this news. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

I know you don’t want to be irresponsible in visiting your aunt, but if you get a bit better, would it be possible to use a surgical mask and go ahead and visit her? At some point family bonds are more important than any other concerns.

I also love to imagine my loved ones being reunited with family in an afterlife. I have found a lot of comfort in something my mom says a lot–that the transition out of this life is very much like the transition into it. When we are born, there are many people anxiously awaiting our arrival, people who love us and can’t imagine life without us. I like to think there is a similar joy and love waiting for us as we pass on.

Lindsey Davis on

When I lost my dad almost two years ago to cancer, the only thing that helped was surrounding myself with family and friends. My dad was “doing well” and went in for a routine operation. Unfortunately, he never fully returned to consciousness and died two weeks later. My 6 brothers and sisters were all there at different times to comfort each other. That is what truly pulled all of us through. Spending time with him and our family and close friends.

Cait on

I read this site every day, it’s one of the highlights of my day, actually, finding all the new pictures and news articles.

Four years ago, we lost my aunt to Lou Gherig’s Disease. We originally thought she was just suffering from a case of drop foot and when we ever got the diagnosis, we were all shocked. An automatic death sentence? How could this be?

It had been about two weeks since I had seen my aunt when she died. She died three years after her diagnosis and 36 hours before her only child’s wedding. None of us were expecting her to go then, we thought she was fighting to see her daughter get married.

Our hearts were very heavy, realizing that she’d never see her only daughter get married but in the end, we realized that she had a much better time, watching from Heaven where she was comfortable, where her suffering was over, and where she could actually enjoy her daughter’s joy.

My suggestion to you would be to invest in a couple of disposable doctor’s masks from CVS or Walgreens and some Purell. That way, even if you’re still sick or Anya is, you can at least see her one last time and say your goodbyes face to face. It’ll help a lot with the heaviness, I’m sure of it. If their worry is you making her sicker before her time is up, the mask will prevent the spread of germs and you can slather the Purell all over your hands and arms, any area of skin that is exposed and it will kill the germs so that you can at least hold her hand and have some sort of last touch.

The reason I hadn’t seen my aunt in two weeks, when I usually saw her every week since her health had taken the turn for the worse, was that I myself was sick and I didn’t want to get her sick. I truly wish I had thought of the medical mask and the germ killer so that I could’ve had my last goodbye with her. I think it would’ve eased some of this guilt I feel.

I hope this helps, Danielle. Thank you for all the wonderful work you do on this site and my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this tough time.

Devon on

Danielle, as much as you probably don’t want this response, nothing but time is going to make any of this feel any better. It’s a crappy thing to hear, and I know I didn’t want to accept it, but it really is the only way. And it’s going to take a long time.

I lost my dad to a stroke in April, and it was the worst thing I have ever gone through. The only thing that made me see any light at this time, and now, is that know I know he’s out of pain and free. He had been very sick for a long time and his stroke was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I still cry about it, especially now that it is Christmas. I’m so sorry that this is happening to you.

I wish you and your family all the best. What you can do now for your family is to get better, and be there for them. But don’t forget about yourself either. If you don’t get rid of everything right now, the stress is going to bring it back ten fold. Do what you can from home. I’m so sorry.

Lauren on

It has been 2 years this November since my mother passed away from lung cancer. I was there when she took her last breath and honestly the only thing that did make it easier was my 5 month old daugther. I still have the voicemail my husband left me the night she passed and it was of my daugther laughing so hysterically for the first time. I thought at that moment the world does not stop even if you want to. My child was experiencing pure happiness for the first time and I was experiencing gut wrenching sadness. It’s so ironic how life works.
Time makes it easier, but never better. Take this time to be with your family and your child. I gaurentee you she will be the answer to what you need. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Rosalia on


I am so very sorry for what both you and your family are going through right now. My thoughts and prayers are with you. In short, no, there is nothing that can help the pain of a family member’s death. I find the “waiting” period you seem to be going through to be the hardest. It has happened to me and I have absolutely no words to describe the grief and hole you feel within your body at a time like this. Again, please know that your family is there with you. You all need to support each other, especially at a time like this when family seem like the most important and only people to run to.
My heart is with you. I hope this time passes soon. Remember what you have had and have and forget what you do not, dwell on moments such as those and not so much on the pain of the moment. Nothing will make it better but this will aid in making it easier to survive through it.
Tons of love your way…

lisaanne on

I want to share my sympathy with you and your family. I just lost my father 3 weeks ago. ( Dad died of Pancreas cancer that spread to the lungs)

I don’t think you are ever prepared to lose a loved one. My suggestion is to take a tape recorder and have her if she has the strenght tape stories for your daughter. In years, when you struggle to remember her voice, you can play it back.
We did this for my grandparents gone 20 years. My children can hear their great grandparents tell how they met..etc…..

I believe that the people we lose are all around us. Especially in our hearts! I do not have magic words to make it better. My heart is breaking for you. I guess I know that we are all born terminal. Everyday is a blessing. It is sad that we have to realize this by losing the ones that we love.

In the end you cannot regret the past(not visiting because of illness) but hold the memories dear to your heart. I hope your holidays are as bright as they can be..
May you share all the magic of the holidays with your gorgeous daughter.

lori on

You have a wonderful opportunity to teach your lovely daughter how to handle life and death. You can choose to react in ways that will allow her to seek comfort when she is faced with the death of a loved one. We all need to see the joy in the presence of the loved one in our life. How wonderful that she was your mother’s sister and your aunt. You must have some wonderful memories. Our “job” is to remember the loving times we have had with our loved ones and have such gratitude for those times.
I have a 5 year old little boy. Shortly after he was born, I was diagnosed with a progressive disease and given a short time to live. I’m still here and doing well for now but I think all the time about how I wouldn’t want my son to be so devastated by my death that he couldn’t cope. I want him to be happy and grateful for the time we have had. Yes, sadness is a part of death. It is okay to be sad. But the fact that you have such utter sadness is also a tribute to the great person your aunt must be – cherish the fact that you had her and don’t let this opportunity slip by as a chance to show your daughter the true meaning of life!

angel's mommy on


I’m so sorry to hear about your aunt. It’s quite obvious from all of the comments left already that you bring a great amount of joy and camaraderie to a great amount of us across the internet.

Death is, unfortunately, one of the very few things every single person on this board has exactly in common. It’s part of the cycle of life. That being said, it isn’t easy to live through when it’s a beloved family member, and my thoughts are with you as you struggle to find peace with the inevitable passing of your aunt.

I think the first comment says everything perfectly. Do what you can to see your aunt. Say your goodbyes, and tell her everything you could ever want to tell her. Death is not easy, but as terrible as it is to watch a family member suffer, you have the chance to be at peace with your aunt’s death.

It will be tough, but after awhile, your thoughts of your aunt will be less sad, and more happy.

madison on

My mother died 10 years ago. It was absolutely devastating and like many other posters I’ll say that time is really the only thing that eases the pain. It may sound corny (but here goes – posting is anonymous after all!), but there’s a quote from a book that I return to when I’m struggling with my grief (still 10 years later the sadness can sometimes be overwhelming). I’d like to share it with you. It’s from the book “Motherless Daughers” by Hope Edelman, and while its targeted at those who have lost their mothers, I think the quote is a great one and applicable to anyone who has lost a loved one. It has helped me, so I wanted to share it with you all:

“I am fooling only myself when I say my mother exists now only in the photograph on my bulletin board or in the outline of my hand or in the armful of memories I still hold tight. She lives on beneath everything I do. Her presence influenced who I was, and her absence influences who I am. Our lives are shaped as much by those who leave us as they are by those who stay. Loss is our legacy. Insight is our gift. Memory is our guide”.

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this time.

PB on

I am so sorry for you. My dad passed away from cancer about a year and a half ago; he lived about six months after he was diagnosed. As horrible as it was (and it was really, really gut-wrenchingly hard), we at least got the chance to say all the things we wanted to say to each other, and to say good-bye. I miss him and think about him every single day, but good memories and time really do help. My dad promised to watch over me and my 4-month old daughter after he was gone, and that sustains me. Even if you don’t believe in an afterlife, you can be comforted by knowing that the feelings of love you have for her won’t end, and that she loves you. My thoughts are with you.

nicksmomma on

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I know this is a difficult time for you, trust me, I know. My family has lost 4 members this year. We lost both of my husband’s grandparents, his cousin, and his aunt. And this was all in a 6 month timeframe. My advice to you is think of yourself as lucky that you have this last bit of time with your aunt. Most people don’t get that. Just treasure her, hold her, hug her, tell her all the things that you want her to know, but most of all, just love her.
The others are right when they say that the pain lessens. It doesn’t feel like it will, but it does, trust me. It has been horrible for us and sometimes the ONLY thing that gets us by is knowing that the members of our family that were suffering so badly before their death aren’t suffering anymore.
Just know that you aren’t alone in your grief. Cry if you need to. And remember that all of us are here if you need us.

raphael on

Unfortunately, time is the only thing that really helps. Hold your beautiful daughter close and cry if you want to. My prayers are with you.

Anonymous on

Danielle, try to focus on the good things, the happy times, the laughs you’ve shared. She knows you love her, whether you are able to see her or not. You have to believe that. Send her a card with Anya smiling big and happy.

But above all, get better and take care of yourself and your family. We all will keep you and your family in our thoughts and prayers.

I feel for you: my sister’s father-in-law, who is a very good friend of mine, was just moved to hospice and I’ve had bronchitis twice in the last six weeks.

It’s sad to lose those that we love but that’s the price we have to pay for having them, unfortunately. The depth of your feelings, mirrors your love for her and even in the darkest moments is still a gift of your relationship.

Charlotte on

Do you go to Fairfield? I couldn’t help but notice your comment about a 19 year-old nursing student ejected from a car. I go there…and that happened to a student here, so either your comment was a coincidence or you go to Fairfield too.

angie on

Oh no, Danielle! That’s horrible news! We’re all here for you and your family! Don’t even worry about the site, just concentrate on your family. They’re what’s most important in the end. God Bless!

JK on

Sending you and your family blessings and prayers for an easy transition. This is such a hard time but please know that there are so many of us out here thinking of you and your sweet Aunt.

Ericka on

The short answer to your question is…No. Yes, hearing peoples condolences and being around people who love you helps and makes you smile when you never thought you’d be able too BUT it doesn’t take the pain away. I lost my sister last year in a car accident and NOTHING and NO ONE could or can comfort me. It seems after you lose someone so close to you you become more spirtual. I’ve become more intouch with my feelings on the afterlife and what brings me comfort is knowing my sister is around and she’s watching over me. It’s also a comfort to talk about her how she was when she was alive…how she really was. I notice after people die the family and friends only remember how great the person was and not their flaws but I find remembering my sister and how great she was ALONG with her flaws makes me happier…her flaws gave her character. What I’d give too have her give me attitude again!

I’m so sorry for what you and your family are going through. I’m not sure how you’d go about telling your daughter as I don’t have any kids. My cousin however was very close to my sister and she has a 2 year old daughter who was my sisters little shadow. They told her that my sister went away…she went to heaven. She’s been to the cemetary and seems to understand that Brit is “down there” (in the ground) but I don’t think she understands it fully. After my sister died my cousins daughter kept saying she saw Brit. She’d sit and play and have a conversation or just stare off into the side of the livingroom where no one was. My cousin would ask her who she’s talking too and she said “Beanie” (that’s how she said my sisters name because she couldn’t say Brittany).

I wish your family the best and hope that you’re able to grieve and eventually move forward. I’m still trying not too be trapped in my grief…it’s hard. Therapy is also a good place to start…

Good luck and my thoughts are with you and your family at this difficult time.

Lauren on

I was really very close with my grandma who died 2 months after my daughter was born. I only got to see her twice. It was so very hard to deal with after she died but keeping her memory alive and by reminicing about the good times really help. Keep yourself thinking about the good times and remember that she is always watching over you and your family and remember that you will see eachother again!! I’m sorry for your loss…

frenchlas on

In one word….Faith. My husband lost his father 3 yrs ago and 9 years ago, we lost our firstborn son at 3 days old. The only glue that held our hearts and minds together was faith that there is more to this life than just what we see and that they didn’t just disappear into the universe.

maryalice on

Life at our house to others may seem stressed, to me it is just one day at a time. My husband and I have four children. 15, 13, almost 7 and 3. In April of this year my mom had a Major heart attack. Her only hope of life was to put her on what is called an LVAD. Left venticular assist divice. In other words an artificial left pumping heart. She is awaiting a donated heart and now her kidneys are failing and is awaiting a heart/kidney.She is at the top of the list. Because my mom is LVAD my husband, myself and my 15 year old had to be certified to take care of her. (only a dozen at the hospital are certified to care for her as well) She can never be left alone. which makes life a little hard. We are down to one income (private schools, and my moms very expensive meds thats stress) my husband is a lieutenent with the fire dept.(I had to close my business until she is better) so he works 24-48 hours at a time leaving me with getting the children to school and their sports. not easy when my mom must limit her time with the public, all of her own Dr. apts. and because this machine that has replaced part of her heart is very large and prevents her from bending and she has trouble walking, it takes about three hours to get her ready to go somewhere. I totally understand when people say they are overwhelmed. I can say that the only thing that stresses me most is not caring for my mom, but its about the money. That seems to be stressing me the most. We are down to two very old cars. 11 year old van, and a 12 year old beater car. we are doing our best to make ends meet.
My mom is my BEST FRIEND, next to my very much understanding husband. I would not change anything except that I dont want to see my mom in pain. Taking care of her has been sad and great joy. It has taught my children patients, understanding, and more love all around.I love spending time with her you just never know.
Yes its unfair and IT sucks she never smoked nor did she ever drink. My dad who died 25 years ago was a cardiologist and he smoked 3-5 packs a day. figure that one.I wish you the best. Send cards when someone is as sick as her they love to read or be read to. Keep in touch with her and her children only if it is by email, cards etc. Mary

Candace on

“I normally don’t believe in an afterlife, but the only thing that brings me any relief is to imagine my aunt rejoining her newborn daughter and her parents in some kind of spiritual or energy afterlife.”

I think this thought is exactly right for you to be feeling about your aunt. My strong faith, that this life on earth is not the end, has always helped me when mourning the loss of loved ones.

Best wishes to you and your family during this difficult time.

paige on

The picture book “The Next Place” by Warren Hanson is tremendously comforting and beautiful. I highly recommend it for adults and children dealing with loss.

SuzyBee on

My thoughts and prayers are with you during what I know is a difficult time for you. Keep faith in your heart and memories in your mind.

My best friend died unexpectedly in July 2006 of an undiagnosed brain tumor….the same day she gave birth to her son. She was never given the chance to see him….but I believe that she is seeing him and her 5 year old daughter.

I wasn’t sure of the afterlife….but the morning after she died, I was on my way to work, and was very sad. Suddenly, our favorite song in the WORLD came on the radio (not a current song….don’t hear it often). Since that time, there have been many times when I have been sad and thinking about her…and that song comes on….

know that you will be able to get through this….

Heather on

Danielle, I’m so sorry to hear that you and your family are going through such a difficult time. I know first hand how emotionally draining going through cancer with a loved one is. Just know that all of your faithful readers are thinking of you.
The best advice I can give is to let your aunt know how much she clearly means to you. If you aren’t able to visit her, let her know through a phone call or letter. This way you won’t regret having not said something when she’s gone. Also, surround yourself with memories of her and pass on to Anya all the wonderful things she passed on to you, like a secret recipe or a story she told you when you were little.
And rest assured that our prayers are with her.

Smileyme on

God. I know that probably won’t mean much to you considering you don’t believe it him, but God along with the support of friends and family is all I can think of. You seem like a strong person, it may take time but you’ll get through this.
I’m praying

jeannine ursillo on

Danielle I am so sorry to hear about your aunt. My son is so sick in the hospital, and my heart is very heavy to. I always said I couldn’t imagine losing my parents, and now my son is sick. I try to stay focused and stay positive about everything, but it gets so hard. It’s like when is enough enough and let them go to a better place. When you are sick and dying the thing is there is a better place for you where there is no suffering just peace.

Lauren on


My grandmother (93!) just died today, December 10th, after suffering through a series of strokes over two months. I, like you, have found the idea of an afterlife, particularly the kind we start of envision as a child, as sketchy. However, I’ve come to believe that if that was her wish (and it was, to go to “another world”) then that is true for her. The body dies, not the energy. When you speak your voice carries on soundwaves into the infinity of the universe. It literally doesn’t die. In that sense, neither do any of us. Tonight my family all gathered via conference call at a certain time and raised a glass to Gram, which she would have LOVED. My own favorite auntie and I then joined in a good but short cry. The anxiety which has plagued me for months has lifted. I’ve let gram go. I wish you and yours peace, now and always.

MomtoB on

I am truly saddened to hear of this news.
I know exactly what it is like to lose an aunt who has seen much trouble in her life and who was like a second mom to me. My aunt fell very ill over Labor Day weekend 3 years ago. Because of the holiday, they put off testing her. When the tests finally came back she was diagnosed with cancer and died 3 days later. From start to finish this was three weeks. I also happened to be having a miscarriage in the same hospital in which she died one week to the day before her death. I also left the day before she was diagnosed with cancer to move to the UK.

In some ways that was a a blessing because I said a very purposeful goodbye even having hope that she would live. It was a beautiful moment, that although painful, my husband and I will cherish forever. I encourage you to say goodbye.

And also, since you asked I feel compelled to tell you that our hope rests firm in Jesus Christ. I believe that we will be with her once again because there is hope beyond this life where pain and sadness are evident.
I encourage you to cry out to God at this time.

You may have stopped reading after that message which I know is controversial. But I’ll also add that it does wonders for the soul to continue to talk about her and make her part of your present life after her death. I now have a daughter who will never know her great aunt which is completely devastating to me. I will make sure she knows about her amazing life and how if she were here she would love her to bits.

And weird as it may sound, I dreamt a lot about my aunt during the second pregnancy. It was comforting to me.

Hope you and your daughter return to good health soon. And perhaps your aunt will have a miraculous restoration! If not, I pray for your journey in healing from the great loss.

M on

I’m so sorry Danielle. I lost my aunt to aggressive cancer in 2004. She was only 46-years-old. She is my mom’s youngest sister. I wanted to scream “CANCER SUCKS!” from a mountain top! And then I just cried and cried and cried some more. What helped me was to go through all my old pictures of her and I. I made a collage, and we shared some great memories. I really tried to be there for my mom, my aunt’s 4 children, and especially my grandmother. Like you said, it must be the worst to lose a child. I would spend hours in the hospital listening, laughing and crying with them. The only thing that made me feel better was to know that she would not be suffering anymore. Her cancer was VERY painful (I will spare all the gory details). My aunt was SO brave. I still talk to her all the time and think of her in my dreams. I believe I will see her again someday. She also lives on in her children…

I truly hope your heart will become less heavy. As many have said, it will in time. God bless you and your beautiful family.

Adrienne on

My thoughts and prayers are with you. I, too, lost a loved one very quickly through cancer. Unfortunately, during this difficult time, it will feel like nothing can make you feel better. Cherish each day and look back on all of the memories you have. This terrible situation will make you and your family stronger and although it does not feel like it now, when we experience what mortality is, we learn to appreciate life even more to its fullest. 5 years have gone by since I lost my loved one and I still hurt and become angered at cancer. The only solace I have found is in giving back through volunteering for a children’s cancer camp, donating to foundations, and trying to keep my loved one’s spirit alive in me and what I do with my life on a day to day basis…

Rosanna on


you can still send her an email or a letter, and/or have somebody deliver it to her. Let her know how you feel about her, and what she has meant in your life. I’m sure she’ll feel better in knowing what she means to you!

Crystal on

My thoughts and prayers are with you. We’ve had some health scares this past month with my brother. I know somewhat how you feel. I know it’s hard, but may you find strength in your family.

gianna on

My grandfather died of cancer, 12yrs ago and it’s so painful and sad to loss a loved one, and he died 3 days before christmas. But the memories and feelings for that person live on, I think of him everyday and cherish all those special times I had with him. Sometimes I question why did he have to die when I was so young, but I feel blessed at least I knew him and I knew he loved me and he knew I loved him. Much prayers sent your way, and god bless your family and you.

Vanessa Green on

I offer you great comfort. If you and your Aunt have done what Romans 10:9 says, then 2 Corinthians 5:8 is true for you both.

Audrey Hepburn on

Dear Danielle,

The only thing that can give you peace is realizing that after your aunt dies, she is made whole, she has no more pain, and would want you to live happily and remember her always.

Love and hugs from Houston. . .

Julie on

I would go and wear a mask and gown. Go say goodbye so that you will have no regrets and you can rest your heart. I have had all but one Grandparent die of lung related diseases and it happens quickly. My faith in Christ has gotten me through over and over. Nothing will make you feel better and it will take time to get through. Take strength in your family and the life you have left to live. Be thankful for the memories and the wonderful relationship you have had with your aunt.

Whitney on

I was very recently in a similar situation and I fully believe hearing about others struggles helps.

Last November my grandmother (Nana) started having migrain headaches. She didn’t think too much of it and didn’t tell anyone about it till after they had stopped in mid-December. Several members of my family talked her into going to the doctor and being checked out. They found a ping pong ball sized tumor in the rear of her brain. She had surgery to remove the tumor on Feb. 9th. They found out it was not brain cancer, but non-small cell lung cancer(fast growing kind). Upon further inspection they found 3 tumors in her lungs and 3 cancerous lymph nodes. My nana already had kidney failure, which limited her chemo options. So they did radiation on her brain to prevent any tumor re-growth. This made her hair start to fall out, I was the one that shaved her remaining hair off. Needless to say we had a very close relationship.

The chemo that she decided to try was a pill form of chemo that was outrageously expensive. After 3 months of treatment, her doctors decided to pull her off the pills because her cancer was still growing rapidly. In fact another tumor grew in her abdomen while she was on the chemo medicine.

August 6th was one of the toughest days. It was the day my nana was given 2-3 months to live. We hired a hospice company, VITAS, which was fantastic. And mid-September my parents moved in with her to help take care of her. I still wish it could have been me moving in to help her, but I live in Houston and she lived in Fort Worth(3.5-4 hour drive), not to mention I’m in my senior year of college. My boyfriend and I went up there every weekend.

My nana turned 73 on September 25, and for obvious reasons didn’t want to celebrate (this was hard on me, I wanted her to celebrate the life she had had). Things coasted along, with her getting weaker with each passing week. November brought full time hospice nurses and eventually morphine. I had a test to take on the 19th, that she would have ordered me to go home and take, which I did. And she passed when I was 40 minutes from returning to her bedside the following day.

It is still fresh and new, but I can honestly say that I have not shed a tear writting it because I know she is at ease now. And I couldn’t ask for more.

I know this seems to be a sad and emotional story, but knowing that other people have gone through it helps. Even giving glimpses of the not-so-glamourous details might help you through the experience. I hope for you, as it was/is for me, a time to remember your loved one for their life and the memories you shared.

A. in Montreal on

Dear Danielle,
My heart goes out to you darlin! This post reminds me so much of when my Grandmother died back in 2005. Granted she had Alzheimers and had had it for some time but in her last few months her doctors suspected that she may have had cancer but did not want to test for it in her fragile state.
My mother was the one who really bore the burden, watching the decline was brutal but the night she died brought us all so much peace. We knew that it would be a matter of months but our concern was that she not suffer. For as hard as it was, we all felt so much relief that she was simply not suffering anymore and that she had gone somewhere better that did not involve being confined to a bed with machines in a life devoid of all that she had once cherished.
Be strong, we are all praying for you. As my grandmother would say, “this too shall pass,” and it will. Remember her for all that she was and remind her now of happier times, hold her hand and comfort her and know that you are not alone.

PinkRoses on

Amy C, I couldn’t have said it better myself, as you reflect my same beliefs. I lost a son and it was THE most devastating thing that has ever happened to me. He was a Christian and I am a Christian and my faith in God’s PROMISE of an eternal life with Him through our acceptance of his Son is what gets me through each and every day. I will see my precious son again one day and will never be separated from him again…and there will be no illness, no dying, no cancer, no pain, so sadness for all eternity! My faith is so strong that I don’t doubt God’s promise for one second. Yes, it’s still very hard to be without my son and life is not ever going to be the same here on earth without him. I still have nightmares and cry and grieve, but I am grieving for my loss…my son isn’t lost, but is in a wonderful, beautiful place waiting for me. I leaned on family, friends and my church for the support I needed to get through these past two years, but simply could NOT have gotten this far without my faith in God’s promises. I give God, first and foremost, the credit and the glory for the strength He has given me, the love that He has for me (and for all His children) and the fact that He will not go back on His promises. Danielle, I pray that you, your family and your aunt have strength, comfort and hope and that something I’ve said can help. My prayers will be with you.

PinkRoses on


I would like to recommend a book used by GriefShare, a nationwide grief support group with thousands of chapters all over the country. It is called Through A Season Of Grief : Devotions For Your Journey From Mourning To Joy by Bill Dunn and Kathy Leonard. The book deals with all the stages of grief and lets you know that all of the many feelings that you experiece during loss are normal and to be expected. It helps you to know that you are not alone, not going crazy or are not experiencing anything weird or too strange to talk about. I can’t tell you how much that book has helped me and I’ve read and reread it to the point that the edges are frayed. I’ve found that, like many people, I went through one stage of grief, went on to another and went back to a previous stage and that it was normal to have your own grief experience and time period of grief. Your experience might not exactly match that of another grieving person, but what you are feeling is still completely normal. The book is just incredible and will help even before you’ve lost your aunt, so right now would be a great time to get it! I want to extend my sympathy for the news you’ve been given about your aunt and the fact that you are already experiencing grief and loss, even though she is not yet gone. I have recommended that book to so many people and I can assure you that it is tastefully and beautifully written. I hope that it helps you through this difficult time. My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours.

PinkRoses on

One more post, and I’ll “shush” it. There IS hope. I can’t tell you why some prayers are answered the way we want them to be and some are answered differently from what we had hoped, but I am one of those walking miracles that the doctors said would not live through the day. I was giving birth to my third child when an undetected brain aneurysm started to leak, then later ruptured in my brain. I told my favorite nurse I was going to die, but she thought I was just being overly emotional because of an unwanted C-section. Over the next three days, I became more and more increasingly incoherent and was having problems focusing and remembering. I was nursing my daughter when I felt the slow trickle in my brain “blow” completely, like someone had blown my head off with a shotgun and the last words I remembered saying to my husband as I nursed my little girl was, “Here, take her!” I started having grand mal seizures, had an irregular heartbeat, my blood pressure shot to an unbelievable level, I stopped breathing and a “Code Blue” was called all over the hospital. I ended up being rushed from one hospital to another larger, more well-equipped university teaching hospital with the best neurosurgeons in the state. They couldn’t determine where the bleed was because of so much blood in my brain and spinal fluid. The doctors told my husband and my parents that I would not live through the day and, if I did, I would most likely be in a nonresponsive (I don’t like to say “vegetative”) state forever…it was that bad. The doctor was getting ready to do surgery when he said he wanted to do the tests one more time (nurses later told me that the doctor NEVER did this because time was of the utmost importance in cases like mine.) He couldn’t believe the results…the bleed was sealing itself and he would not have to do surgery. During all of this, I had an experience where I “watched” them working over me as if I was above my own body, then the scene faded to black, but I could still hear the doctors talking. I later repeated some of their words back to them that I heared while I in a diagnosed coma, which I remained in for three days. The nurse I talked to cried when I told her these things and she said that when people die, the last of their senses to go is their hearing, so I was that close to death. Well, after two months in a critical care unit I got to see my “newborn” daughter and I was, by then, talking and walking with some memory loss and I had to have some therapy later to relearn some things that I lost. I found out later that someone at my church, upon hearing of my grave condition, called the first person in our prayer chain and that they called other church members, who called other churches and the prayers went on and on and were, literally, being lifted up all over the country. My doctor said there was NO medical science that could explain WHY I walked out of that hospital on my own, with only a few residual side effects. He said he gave credit to someone far greater than him…to God, for there was no scientific way I was supposed to be alive. I lived to raise three children and, yes, to lose one of them. But, my faith remains strong and I depend daily on God’s promises that I WILL have an eternal place with Him made possible by the sacrifice of His Son. That is my belief and my faith is very strong, despite many trials and tribulations in my life. I hope my sharing this true story with you will somehow offer you an opportunity to question, seek and find answers that will give you your own strong faith and sense of peace and joy that this is not all that there is and that God has prepared a place beyond this world so wonderful that we can’t even imagine it. I look forward to being there one day and to seeing my beautiful son again. God be with you.
(Sorry my entry was so long.)

Sasha on

Danielle, thank you for opening up to us. Visit your aunt with your daughter and tell her how much you love her, exactly what you’ve told us in your post here. When I lost my mom to advanced breast cancer 4 years ago, I didn’t anticipate how hard it would hit my dad and how much he would need me to step up. Your uncle and cousins will greatly appreciate your support! Please feel free to reply to me if you would like. Hospice is about comfort and dignity, so she is in good hands – the best hands, those of her family. Best,

Sarah on


There are no words that I can say to try and make you feel any better. I can’t because, honestly, there really isn’t anything someone can say. Nothing can take that kind of pain away. My mother was diagnosed with lung cancer in December of ’06, one week after my friend was killed in a car accident. She, just like your aunt, began chemotherapy but after two months she couldn’t handle it anymore and stopped. She died on March 30, 2007. It has been a little over eight months now and every day my heart aches for her. Your going to miss your aunt everyday and saying good-bye will never feel right, but I promise you it gets easier as time goes bye. You may not believe me, what do I know I’m only 18, but everyone who reads this website cares for you and we are here for you during your time of need. Take your time with this site, focus on your family and try and get through this hard time. I usually do not pray, but tonight I will make an exception and pray for your aunt.

katie on

I lost my granfather in aug this year to the same thing he was diognosed in feb and he had radiotherapy for a few months, he decided he didn’t want to go through the treatment anymore it spread really fast after that and the comfort I got when he was gone that he was not suffering anymore, it as not my grandfather and looking back i still miss him today but i think he is in a better place and not in pain anymore. I don’t know if this helps but I needed to share my story

Leishk on

there is nothing to make this easier. You can’t go around this pain or under it or over it. Steady yourself, because you have to go through it. And when you come through the other side you will be fundamentally changed in some way, and that “scar” is the proof of how important your aunt is. In your life wear your “scars” proudly. They are gained in the battles that demand the very best of you.

ang on

my dad died in april after an almost 2yr battle with a brain tumour.i am not married i have no kids and he wasn’t proud of the way my(or my brother’s) life was going when he died.im not really a religious person and he was a vegetable pretty much when he passed, but i hope wherever he is, he will be proud of me again one day. we are all thinking of u & ur family & glad ur all feeling better now.

Pam on

Peace WILL be found in Jesus Christ. It doesn’t have to be something you wish or hope for. He says to seek Him and He WILL Be found. It honestly is that simple. It is my personal testimony and the testimony of many others. You will not understand it until you do it. Please, please give it a try. It breaks my heart that you hurt so much without Him. He will comfort you in ways you never dreamed. Your eternity will depend on what you do with Him.

I love you,

April on

Danielle I am sorry to hear about your aunt and you and your family will be in my prayers I lost my grandmother 10/16/07 to lung cancer the wounds are still very fresh. We are a close family and this took alot out of us. She found out she had lung cancer in July of 06′. She was going to have the surgery to remove the tumor out of her lung when it came time for the surgery it had moved into her lymph node so surgery was no longer an option. She started chemo (once week) and radiation (5 days a week) for a 6 week run. January 07′ came had the PET scan done everything was good it shrunk from a stage 4 to a stage 1 doc said see you in 3 months we’ll keep an eye on it. Well in a matter of 7 weeks she started having bad back pain. Then the news came it had moved to her bone it’s no longer cureable only treatable. We turned it over to God cause we knew he was the only one who could help at this point. They started a different chemo and radiation cause not only was it in her back it was also in her brain. But prayers have been answered in her July PET scan the doctor couldn’t believe it all the cancer in her brain was gone and the spot on her spine was just a pin drop mark but still on her lung and she needed 1 more chemo but her body couldn’t take it. By September Hospice was called in to manage her pain and the cancer was everywhere stomach, back, sternum, brain, breast, & lung it just spread that fast in that short of time my family was beside themself it was a emotional roller coaster for 15 months up and down and even though in the end we knew she was going to die we couldn’t prepare ourselves for the pain we was going to feel. The only thing that made it easier was we knew where she was going and we knew there was going to be no more pain for her. And I hope your family finds comfort in that,and also for the Lord to grant you the strength & peace that passes all understanding at this time and the days, weeks, and months ahead.

Laura on


My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

My uncle was diagnosed with gastro-esophageal cancer last week. This week, we found out that my 8-month-old niece (the absolute light of my life) needs to have a very complicated type of brain surgery. Both of these things came out of the blue and we are reeling.

I hope that you are able to say your goodbyes and that you are able to take some comfort in the belief that she will continue to live on in your hearts. That she will still be with you through all of your ups and downs.

Bridget on

I’m so very sorry to hear about your aunt. To be brutally honest, I don’t think there is anything that can make you feel better. I lost two aunts to cancer within six months of each other. That year was extremely trying on my entire family. What helped me most of all was being able to see them one more time before they passed away. If you feel you can’t wait, talk to her doctor and see if you can wear a gown & mask to visit. I did that several times. I also think it’s very comforting for loved ones to know that you don’t view them as an outcast, but as someone you love and will miss dearly. If you’re not able to see her, writing a letter to be delivered can bring comfort. My thoughts are with you and your family.

Lisa on

My Aunt passed away a little over 10 years ago now due to lung cancer. She was wonderful and I miss her. And her daughter misses her. To answer your question..no, nothing helps when you are feeling so much pain. Just hug your daughter and continue to live your life..and go see her if at all possible. And if you can’t, know that she understands and is ok with it. Take care.

June on

How to gain comfort?
Do you have any friends who believe in God?
If you do, ask one of them to pray for you, asking Jesus to give you and your aunt strength and comfort through this very difficult time. Even if you don’t believe in Jesus it is so comforting to pray and ESPECIALLY to be prayed for.
Other advice to make it through initially is look for the mercies of the situation, thankfulness is kin with comfort and peace.

When my husband’s father had rapid growing brain cancer and died just three weeks after our wedding, we were thankful that he was able to be there and thankful for a thousand other mercies during the three month period between diagnosis and death (too many for me to write them all). By seeing all the mercies we were reassured that the situation was in God’s hands, and knowing that helped us to let him go – painful though it was and still is.

Many readers have posted helpful comments for coping in the long-term, I sincerely hope this is helpful for you now.


Christine M on

Danielle, First and foremost my thoughts and prayers are with you and your extended family. My grandmother was the same, lung cacner and she stopped her treatment. Nothing can take away the pain and anguish. remember telling her I loved her and she wouldnt wake up and I refused to leave until she acknowledged that she could hear me say it. Take time and say goodbye, let it out. It is so hard but you will regret it if you don’t. But also remember the good times.For me it was such a blessing having them to fall back on.

Harley on

I can only say to be grateful that you knew this was coming. It gives you time to say goodbye, it gives you time to laugh with her a few more times, even if it’s on the phone. It’s hard to watch someone fight so hard and realize that it’s not going to get them through it. Take solace in the fact that she knows it will happen and she has made peace with her decision.

Anytime she has left on this earth, you realize it’s less than you had hoped for but you still know it’s coming. I lost my brother in a motorcycle accident 22 days after he returned from OIF and I’ll tell yuo what, I’d still give just about anything in this world to have had the time to say goodbye.

My heart is with your family.

kate on

My sympathies.

In the last 2 years, our family has lost my mother (age 54), an aunt (age 40) and most recently a cousin (age 36 . . . leaving a wife, pregnanat with twins). These losses have left us deeply pained. All vibrant people, gone way too soon.
But the best advice I’ve been given is to just pray (hope) for acceptance. Sometimes there are no answers, and life is not fair. I used to hate it when people said that time was healer, but have faith that this is true.
Your family will be in my thoughts. I love your blog!

Robin on

My thoughts and prayers are with you and all of your family. I lost my grandmother 3 years ago 6 days before Christmas. I was there with her and my grandfather as she took her last breath and had sat with her for four days before watching her get to that point. I miss her almost as much today as I did that day. The thing that keeps me going is the fact that I do believe in an afterlife and that she is in a much better place with no more pain and sorrow and is watching over me. And that I will see her again someday. I still miss her, but it is not the bonecrushing kind of sadness that it was at first. It will get easier, but it does take time. I am so, so sorry for all of you. I hope that she goes quickly and painlessly — for her sake. Big hugs to all of you. Robin

Nicole on

Unfortunately…there is nothing to make it better. I was with my grandfather and my grandmother (who had lung cancer as well) as their journey moved forward and I made a point to talk about old stories and let them reminisce a bit about who they were and how they came to be who they were. I cherish the time I was able to spend with them in their last days. It is hard to see your loved ones deteriorate but the time that you spend with them will be memorable for you and for them. My prayers are with you and your family at this difficult time. Have a peaceful holiday.

Laurie Russell on


I am so sad to hear about your aunt’s illness and my prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time.

You asked the question, “Can anything make you feel better when you are losing someone who is close” and the unfortunate answer, as least in my recent, brief but very impactful experience is “no”. I watched both of my parents become devastatingly ill and lost both of them this year to lung cancer – my Dad in Feb. 2007 after less than two months after diagnosis and my Mom only six months later in Aug. 2007 in less than four months after diagnosis (it had been a second battle for her – she had beat lung cancer in 1998 and had been in remission for almost nine years).

I am not trying to be pessimistic but actually realistic – you and your family will need to go through the pain and sorrow of losing your aunt before you are able to accept this great loss and move on, to the best of your abilities, with your lives. Your aunt will always be a part of you, and the most important thing that I have learned is that by having a strong belief in life after death and that I will be reunited my parents again one day has been an extraordinary comfort.

It is hard to fully understand now but know that your love for your aunt will last beyond her lifetime as hers will for you and your family, and your memories of times spent with her and the many great moments shared will be the most wonderful gift that you can ever be given.

God bless.

Tracy on

I lost two very close friends within two years of one another to cancer, both under the age of 24. It is probably one of the most difficult things you can go through with the people you love, having that feeling of being completely helpless when you can see that they are in pain, but you have to know that just being there means more than anything else ever could!

There aren’t even words… I’ll just send an online hug to you and your family! *HUG*

Liza on

I wish there was something I could say but Im terrible at that… I’m going through the same thing with my grandma right now. She has renal cancer and she decided that enough was enough with and that she wanted to feel well enough to enjoy my children!! Its such a sad feeling to know that someone would choose pain to enjoy something so beautiful and everyday I have to keep my head up and know that she will be comfortable soon and she has made a lasting impression of strength on my children… Good luck and stay strong Danielle

Monique on

My mom passed away from lung cancer when I was 19, and it was very, very hard. The only thing you can do, which won’t take away the pain of losing her, is to be there for her. Tell her how much you care. Say the things you need to say. There will be time after she passes for you to grieve. Right now she needs the strength of her family to help her through this.

Also, I was at a point where I was questioning whether there is anything beyond this life. After this experience, I believe there is. My mom fell into a coma about 3 hours before she died. The last thing she did
was take in a big breath, and then smiled.

yaosa on

Dear Danielle,

I commend you about sharing your pain and sorrow about something so close and personal.

I have not experienced the loss of a loved one through cancer and I can only imagine how it feels to know that someone you love is going to die and makes a conscious choice of how she wants to die.

She sounds like a very brave woman to refuse chemo and take control of her death.

Have you thought about writing a letter to her if you cannot manage to visit her in hospice ? Maybe to write out all you feel would be comforting. I know writing helps me.

Also meditating helps. I did this a lot when my grandmother was passing due to complications from alzheimers disease and an overwhelming feeling of her presence came to me and I knew she would be alright.

My thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult and transitional time.

I hope you, Josh and Anya are all better from your ailments.

Dara on

I lost my Mom last year 3 days before Christmas and it’s still very hard. The fact that your aunt has decided in her right to quit pursuing treatment and go into hospice care let’s you know that she’s prepared for her passing. In fact, she’s probably looking forward to being with her children. Just know that even though it’s painful, she will live on. I refuse to believe that the only purpose of living is to die and cease to exist. It wasn’t until I had my children that I really understood what life was about. I know we’re not just physical bodies. The one thing that reminds me of that fact is our power to love. We have the power within us to love to the point where it breaks our hearts and in some cases, love until it kills us. That’s an amazing thing about being human…I would suggest a song I heard right after my Mama passed. It’s called “God only cries for the living” by Diamond Rio. It’s a musical treasure.

Candy on

December 1, 2006 my grandma died of lung cancer she was diagnosed when I was 11(I’m 22 now) she fought the cancer and won the first time, but when it and when it came back she fought again and lived much longer than any doctor said she could. The last lime I saw her was November 29th. The best advice I have for you is that you can be sad, you can cry for days if you want to. You’ll never forget, and trust me you won’t want to. The pain of loss only goes to show you that someone was really special. Knowing how hard it was to go through the loss of my grandma I would still rather feel 100X that pain than to never know her. So honestly, you won’t feel better no matter what you do, but that’s ok.
What helped the most was to laugh, to tell stories, to talk to everyone and listen.
December 2, 2006 we went to my grandma’s house,(the one her and my grandpa built, she had hospice come see her at her house and she passed in the living room) we were looking at old pictures and found some half nudes that my grandpa had taken of her when they were just married! It was the one thing that really put my mind at ease because I knew that she didn’t just die, she had lived.
I don’t know if that helps you but i hope that you can find comfort.

Tracy on

A heavy heart is something I can understand greatly. It’s hard to imagine life after death, but lately I believe it more than ever. My 31- year old brother had a stroke in April and has a brain tumor that is fighting him and he is fighting just as hard back. I lost two grandparents this year and an animal that was very dear to my heart along with almost losing my brother. My Grandmother who was my most recent loss, was still in the hospital and my daughter looked at me out of the blue and said “lil” grandma which is what she called her says she has to go home now, but don’t be scared because she is an angel now. That was before we found out she had passed. Be strong, you will get through it, look through your daughters eyes and you just might see some hope and a cure for that heavy heart.

Nancy A on


I don’t write here often, but view your website daily and enjoy it quite alot.
I feel for you and sometimes knowing someone will die is the worst. But I see it as a gift. I’ve experienced my father dying suddenly when I was just 15. My mother dying a few months after her diagnosis. I was 39.
My mom died in April of 2005. She had cancer of the liver. She decided on Hospice and she was so brave and ready to go.I didn’t expect her to die 3 days after entering hospice. If your all better and can see her. Go for it. Don’t wait. Now is the time to be with her and talk about old times and create more memories. Hang in there.You are not alone.

Chris on

I just read this post and my heart breaks for your family. I will keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.

Southern girl on

First of all, there absolutley is a GOD and there is a HEAVEN…if you are saved and believe Jesus Christ died on the cross to save you…then you will have eternal life. Please talk to your aunt and make sure she is saved…there isn’t time to put this off. I don’t think anything will make you miss her any less…I just lost my Grandmother, who I was very close to, and miss her like crazy every day…she was in an immense amount of pain here on Earth though…so I am sad for me, not for her…becuase she is in HEAVEN with GOD…where I will hopefully see her again one day…after all, HEAVEN is supposed to be perfect, and I can’t imagine perfect without my G-ma 🙂
GOD bless, and I am sorry for the hurt your family is going through…your in my prayers…

Joanne on

Danielle, I’m so sorry for your pain. My grandfather and father-in-law we diagnosed with Lung Cancer within a week of each other in April 2006. They both passed away within 12 hours of each other last December 17th and 18th. It is difficult time of year to deal with such pain. Hold on to your family, as I found great strength from that. Your family will be in my prayers. Hospice provides services for both the patient and the family. Please encourage your Uncle to look into those services. They will help him through his time of grief and tremendous sorrow.

maryalice on

I am sorry for your loss as well as for your family. With GODS Blessings Have a Safe and Merry Christmas along with a Happy New Year. MaryAlice

kristen on

I am SO sorry for your loss! But how blessed are you that you got those moments with her!?

I can’t believe how fast she went! I guess she just “knew”, huh?!

May God comfort you and yours through this hard time when only He can provide the comfort needed!


Maria on

I am extremely sorry to hear about your aunt!

Eleven years ago my grandmother was diagnosed with metastatic cancer (primary unknown). She was diagnosed, prognosed, and deceased in exactly 2 weeks from start to finish. It all happened so fast that it was really hard to take it all in, and I suppose I didn’t really until much later. There was too much to do at the time there wasn’t much time for sorrow. I was very fortunate enough to be with her when she died. Like your aunt, the pain medication ensured that that her body was at peace and pain free. I never worried about her mind and spirit, I knew she was going to Heaven. I have never met a more godly woman. She loved God with all of her heart, and I knew she was going to be okay.

Having loved ones die at anytime is hard, of course, but naturally it seems worse during this time of year.

Your aunt is totally and completely at peace, and I hope that you and your family are able to take comfort in that!

I wouldn’t have made it through my own sorrow if it wasn’t for MY strong belief and faith in God. He will ALWAYS and forever be there to comfort you and give you the strength you need to get through each day (and sometimes when things are especially rough, hour by hour and even minute by minute).

Take care of yourself. Rest assured that I along with many of your other readers are praying for you and your entire family!!

Amelia on

I am so very sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

I hope that you and your family find peace in knowing that she left surrounded by the love of her family.

God bless

– Amelia

Laurie on


I know how you’re feeling and what you’re going through. While I’m still fairly young (recently turned 21), my maternal grandfather passed away the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. I was really close to him, as I saw him basically everyday growing up.

It’s always tough to lose a family member, it’s even tougher to lose a family member during the holiday season. It’s a long road ahead, but the days do get easier as they go on. At least your aunt isn’t suffering any more as is finally at peace.

God Bless,

angie on

God Bless your Aunt Claire! May she rest in eternal peace.

Melanie F. on

I am so glad that you got to see her, that truly was a blessing in itself. I will continue to pray for you and your family. May God continue to bless and heal every single person that has lost someone dear to them my condolences also go out to all of you, as well as Danielle.

Nicole on

Danielle, I am so sorry for your loss. Sending you hugs during this difficult time.

Harley on

If you believe in the after life or even a gathering of energies, be glad to know you have an extra set of eyes watching over you and your family. You won’t get over this but you will get through this.

shanesgirl on

Danielle, you have my sincerest condolences and deepest sympathies on your loss

hopefully you can find comfort in these words.

I thought I saw your face today,
in the sparkle of the morning sun.
And then I heard the angel say,
“Their work on earth is done.”

I thought I heard your voice today,
then laugh your hearty laugh.
And then I heard the angel say,
“There’s peace dear one at last.”

I thought I felt your touch today,
in the breeze that rustled by.
And then I heard the angel say,
“The spirit never dies.”

I thought I saw my broken heart,
in the crescent of the moon.
And then I heard the angel say,
“The Lord is coming soon.”

I thought that you had left me,
for the stars so far above.
And then I heard the angel say,
“They left you with their love.”

I thought that I would miss you so,
and never find my way.
And then I heard the angel say,
“They’re with you every day.”
“The sun, the wind, the moon, the stars,
will forever be around,
reminding you of the love you shared,
and the peace they’ve finally found.

Nicole on

Your letter to your Aunt Claire was beautiful. I am glad that you were able to read it to her before she passed. Prayers are with you and your family at this time.

Jennifer on

I am SO SORRY with your lost. I lost my mom when i was only 12 years old. I hope you get through this difficult time but time does heal

Cheri on

I’ve been a longtime reader and fan of your website. I’m so very sorry for your loss. I’m glad you got a chance to be there, and read your beautiful letter to her. I hope you know that you brought her comfort. God bless you and yours.

Amber H. on

I am so sorry to hear the news…my thoughts and prayers are with your whole family at this sad time. Take care!

Bobbi on

Good for you, for focusing on the wonderful qualities she had, and how you’ll instill them in Anya. I’m not sure knowing someone will pass, makes it any easier when it happens. But being able to relish in the wonderful memories does make it more tolerable. For me, it is retelling my grandmother’s stories, both funny and sad that keeps me close to her, and makes each day a tad bit easier. When you think of them, jot them down. Share them with family, especially Anya, so that she too can ‘know’ her wonderful Aunt Claire. I hope when you think of her, your tears will also be joined with smiles.

Michelle on


My deepest sympathies to you and your family at this difficult time.

Lauren on

Danielle, I am so sorry, it’s never a good time to lose a loved one, but I think the holidays are even tougher because this is the time you cherish because you get to make a lot of memories in so little time, but this holiday will be bittersweet. Try to make the best out of it. My thoughts are with you and your family.

Sabrina on

Danielle (& family),
I am not sure that anything we (or I) could say to make this situation less hard than it is for you. Grieving somebody’s death is so hard for the family left behind especially because you cannot control your emotions. The best thing to do is to let yourself grieve and get your feelings out. But also know that your aunt was suffering, and while it may be hard to picture, she is in a much better place where she is not suffering or struggling anymore. It is no doubt difficult to go on when you lose somebody so close to you, but if anything be thankful that she is no longer suffering and that she is much better off where she rests now because she can be herself again.
I send my deepest condolences to all of you!

gargoylegurl on


So sorry for your loss…


Natasha on


I’ll be praying for your family tonight. It’s a terrible thing to happen, but I know you’ll be okay. You have a strong family there to support you.

Mary on

Dear Danielle, I’m sorry for your family’s great loss. It sounded like your aunt was a wonderful and special human being. I believe she is in a better place now, and most importantly of all, she is no longer suffering in pain. You and your family are in prayers.

Stephanie on

Danielle –

I’m so incredibly sorry for your loss. I’m glad you got to see your aunt and read her your letter.


Monika on

Dear Danielle,
Although I have never experienced cancer in my family, I have experienced tragic loss, so I know what you are going through and I send my deepest condolences. My father passed away (Dec 11) when he was hit by a car while crossing the street 5 years ago. he died suddenly, so I never got to say goodbye to him. It is especially hard when a family members passes away near any kind of holiday, it just makes that time of year so much harder. Please find some comfort in that you got to say goodbye and make peace with your aunt before she passed. I know she’ll look over you and your family. I miss him but I know, in some form, we will be reunited one day, this gives me the strength to face each day, no matter how hard it gets, take these words to mind and it may lessen your pain and slowly help you to heal.

Lauren22 on


First of all, my deepest sympathies go out to you and your family.

I know all too well how hard it is to loose a close loved one to cancer. My beloved Father lost his battle to it in January of this year. Cancer is so ugly….I hope and pray that one day that monster will no longer exist.

From my personal experience, the hurt will be with you for a long time. It is still with me to this day. I think about my Dad EVERY day and still yearn for his kisses and hugs. I miss his phone calls, I miss his wacky sense of humor. I hate that we never got to see him with his newest grandson(my nephew) who was born 6 weeks after his death. We KNOW he looks over lil’ Ryan, but just not being about to see his face light up when seeing him is what makes it so sad.

My Dad fought SO hard for 5 years. He beat the cancer time and time again when it spread to other organs. When the monster spread to his lungs he fought as best as he could. He was in denial until just a few days before he died. He truly thought he was going to beat it again and I believed him. We were told it had spread to his lungs in October of 2006 and he died January 14, 2007….6 weeks before his 70th birthday. 😦

Crystal on

Danielle (& family),

I am truly sorry for your loss. The letter you wrote was beautiful and moving. I lost my great-granny about 6 years ago. The pain gets easier, but it will always be there. I have good days and occasionally bad days. I have been thinking about her a lot lately. It seems to come and go in spurts.

May God Be With You And Your Family.

Carol Lee on

I’m so sorry for the loss of your beloved aunt. Prayers to you and your family. It’s very hard to deal with such a loss. I recently lost my grandmother, and almost bought her a Christmas present before I remembered she was gone. It takes time for your heart to accept it.

Charlotte on

That letter is so touching Danielle, it brought me to tears. Sounds like she was a wonderful person and will be greatly missed. So sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and your family. Blessings & Hugs!

Kaz on

Hi Danielle,

Just to let you know that there is nothing anyone can say that can take that pain away, but time. I lost my grandmother last year, and probably for the first 3 months I cried everyday. Some days I have will myself not to think of her just to get through the day, because the thought of not being able to pick up the phone and talk to her is unbearable. In time you will be able to think of your Aunt with fond memories and smiles, as I hope to do with my Grandmother.

Liza on


I was saddened when I read your original post regarding your aunt. I went thru the same situation with my uncle a few years back and after reading your post, it brought tears to my eyes because I’d been there and knew what you would have to ultimately face and how utterly devastating it would be. Remember your aunt with love, happiness and laughter, and most importantly, tell that beautiful little girl of yours all about your aunt. She might not understand the stories yet, but you will find peace and comfort in telling these stories and they will become family lore.

Wishing you and your entire extended family lots of happy thoughts, positive energy and the peace of mind knowing that your aunt isn’t suffering anymore. May you find comfort in that.

nicksmomma on

I just posted a comment to this last night, and when I just signed on and read the tragic news that you lost your aunt today, my heart sank. I know this is so painful for you, and you probably don’t see how you’ll ever feel the same again. But, trust me, you will. The letter to your aunt couldn’t have been worded better, and I know that meant the world to her. This website and blog is sort of like our own “extra” other family besides all of our own. In just about every comment, people say their prayers are with you, myself included. The power of prayer is an amazing thing. It can work wonders. That’s how I know you and your family will be just fine. It may take awhile, but you will. Once again, we are all here for you.
May God bless you and your entire family. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your entire family…

God Bless…

Julie on

Dear Danielle

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time.

Colette on

Oh Danielle.

I am always skeptical of how much comfort words can be at times like this but I shall let you know that you and your family are in my thoughts.

Your letter was beautiful. Truly beautiful. I’m so glad that you had the chance to read it to your Aunt it must have been great comfort to her to know just how special she was to so many people.

You should take heart from the fact you said everything you wanted to and you have no unfinished business.

susan on

While that pain will never go away completely, in time it will lessen to a nostalgic ache. I am glad you got to comfort her in her time of need – and I am glad she was able to comfort you in your time of need. Hug your daughter, I know that will help.

amelita on

I am so sorry for your loss. I am glad you were able to speak what was in your heart before your aunt passed on. We lost my mother in law to cancer last spring and it was incredibly difficult.
Love, hugs and strength to your family, and may your dear aunt rest in peace. Amy

Sarah on

My every sympathy to you and your family. Thanks for publishing such a private letter, it was beautiful.

PinkRoses on

Danielle & Family,

I am so very sorry for your loss. You will continue to be in my prayers.

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 35-39 (NIV)

Missy on

I am so very sorry for your loss. My deepest sympathies for you and your family. Your letter was absolutely beautiful


Melanie F. on

I will definitely keep you and your family in my prayers. I love the picture of Anya and Aunt Claire. You guys are really lucky to at least have beautiful memories and nothing, not even time, can take those away.

Crystal on

I am so sorry for the loss of your aunt. I understand the feelings you must be going through because I too have lost an aunt I will pray for you, your uncle and the rest of your family. I truly am so sorry.

jaQ on

i’m so sorry danielle. i have read your blog daily for years, & so in a way i feel like i “know” you. it hurts my heart to hear about this, and to see your pain, and to know what your aunt and her loved ones went/are going through.
i had a really crappy day today. i came home crying, and got on the computer, and saw this, and i just want to give you a big hug. it’s like a huge slap in the face, how fragile life is, and how quickly it can be lost. it’s so frightening, and yet, we can’t let ourselves live in constant fear.
hug your beautiful daughter, appreciate the times you did spend with your aunt, and take relief in her being united with her daughter and parents. i’m not sure what i believe either, but when it comes down to it, i feel the same way as my mother: not until i had children did i need to have something to believe in. as a mother, we need to believe we’ll be all be together again one day. best wishes, hon, you’re all in my thoughts.

NicoleH on

I am so sorry for your loss. On January 4th my dad died. It was sudden and unexpected he was found in his office at work. He was in his 50’s. Dealing with this loss has been very hard… The best advice I can give you is to always remember.

You will never get over this but you will get through it…

This has helped me throughout this year and I hope it helps you.

Leslie on

I’m sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you and your family at this time.

Leslie Fried

ann on

I know what you are going through. My Mom was told she had cancer march 8, 2006. She fought hard, but lost her battle july 9, 2006. It is still so hard, but we are getting through it. Your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

g on

it’s josh and ME-not josh and I. jesus. do you guys not have an editor??

emko on

I’m very sorry to hear about your aunt! She sounded like such a wonderful woman!

astrid on

I hope this shiva is as happy a time as it can be for your family, remembering the woman you all loved.

Julie on


I know what you are going through. My aunt passed away this year on July 8th before midnight just 3 weeks after she became diagnosed with brain cancer. She faught and succeeded through her battle with ovarian and lung cancer also. Anybody who has to fight cancer is a strong person, and just because your aunt chose not to receive treatment doesn’t make her any less stronger.

Prayers and condolences help, but they dont take away the pain. Nothing fully does, time will help you get through this horrible time. You need to remember that your aunt is no longer in any pain. She is now 100% cancer free forever.

Be with your family, talk, cry, laugh. You need each other during this difficult time and live your life as your aunt would have wanted you to.

SerenityHappiness on

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this time.

patricia night on

I’m very sorry. Hold on.
I’ve lost my grandpa there years ago and my grandma this spring. She was ill before dead and that was really hard. We all wanted to believe that everything will be alright again, but she passed away. It was very painful to my family and me. My grandparents were people who brought me up while my parents were working. The only thing that helps me was my happy memories about grandpa and grandma and happy moment they’ve given to me when they were here. And I do believe that they are with me now and always. When you lost someone this person stays with you no matter what.
My prayers are with you and your family.

yogadaisy on


My deepest sympathies to you, Josh, and your entire family on the loss of your dear Aunt Claire. Your letter was beautiful and I’m sure it brought much comfort to Claire in her last moments.

Thinking of you, Yogadaisy

CaliAngel on

I am so sorry for the loss of your aunt,Danielle. Please know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

rose vinson on

i am so sorry for your loss danielle…my mother passed away in like manner. she had cervical cancer and chose not to be treated. it was the worst 4 months i have ever known. it was best that you didn’t see her. my oldest son chose not to see my mom as he said he wanted to remember her as she had been when he saw her last. a vital woman. it hurt so bad that i can’t describe it fully when i say it was like visiting the worst nightmare you can imagine. yet when i saw her dead lying there just after she died, she almost seemed to have a smile of relief on her lips…as the pain had finally left her. not only did my mom die a horrible death, she lived a horrible life with a horrible man who abused her and all of us children.
so please smile and remember her good lifeand how kind and beautiful she was, for she only had a little pain in the end then no more pain. it was a merciful death for her to go so quickly. i took care of a woman that had cancer, was eat up with it(her words) and she told me the pain was unbearable until she just quit hurting. i loved that woman too, as i did all the little old ladies that i took care of.
and remember that if you give God your burdens to carry, you will realize that she wouldn’t want you hurting. my mom said to celebrate at her funeral. we couldn’t do that but it helped afterward to know that she didn’t want us to mourn. we realized that she was such a courageous person. your aunt was probably like that too. take care, your friend grumpybear.

cynthia on

I am very sorry for the loss of your aunt. It was a truly beautiful letter you wrote for her. Even though she has passed on, it is wonderful that all of you were able to be there with her.

Mariam on

Dear Danielle,

I’m sooo sorry for you on this loss; hope you are better now. Please remember that You and your family will always be in my head.
I’m so sad that it happened in a bad time of the year.

God Bless your aunt……

CTBmom on

I am so sorry to hear about your Aunt. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

BarbD on

I read your site daily and really enjoy it. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. It is never easy. Cancer is a dreadful disease. She is not suffering now and is with you, just in a different way. My heart goes out to you and your family. I have lost too many family members to this horrific disease. You will be in my thoughts.

Anna on

All I can say is I am with you

nosoupforyou on

I’m so sorry.

I will say Kaddish for her.


Tammy on

My thoughts go out to you and your family. I lost my Aunt Charlene almost two years ago. I miss her so much – especially at the holidays.

Morgan on

First let me express to you how sorry I am for your loss. I lost my grandmother to complications from Alzheimer’s at the end of March this year and my uncle Eric last November to cancer. He was 31. There’s really nothing anyone can tell you that will ease your pain right now. But I promise to keep your family in my prayers and I hope the shiva will assist with your mourning. Sometimes introspective time with loved ones is what we need; not the platitudes. Be blessed!

Kinsey on

I’ve always been a reader of CBB, but this calls for my first post.

I’m so sorry for you and your family’s loss.
It’s always painful to lose someone you love, no matter who they are. I truly wish the best for you and yours and hope that somehow your heart will mend.


Jen on

I am so very sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers go out to your family. It is very hard losing someone you love, but especially hard during this time of year. My mother died December 13, 1997, when my daughter was barely 5 months old. Rejoice and remember all of the wonderful moments you shared together and those will help get you through.

Lori on

Oh Danielle, I am so sorry for your loss. I don’t even have the right words. We’ll keep everyone in our thoughts and prayers.

That blanket she made for Anya is gorgeous. I love that you all have something special like that from her.

Kris on

I am so sorry for your loss. It has been a tough year for me as well. In February of this year I lost my brother and 3 year old nephew in a fire. We burried them on Valentine’s Day. Then a couple of months later my grandfather also died. We burried him on what would have been my brother’s 35th birthday. I think about them every day and can offer only this… the first year after someone close to you dies is the hardest. So many “firsts” (first holidays without them, their birthday passes, etc.). But try to remember that she is in a better place. That has helped me. Stay strong, it gets better.

peace and love, Kris

Lisa on

I’m sorry.