Saturday, March 15, 2008

How are you?

You want the standard "fine - how are you?" or do you really want to know? What do you want me to say? What would make you feel good? What would make you feel good about me?
What stage of grief are you at?
Do you really want to know? Real friends do want to know. And the honest answer is- I'm in terrible pain. I've lost a very dear and precious friend. Someone who was very much like me, only so much better. Brighter. Smarter. Someone who was so idealistic, and working so hard to make this world a better place. Someone who had a passion to mobilize the church into missions and impact the world through the arts.
And I let her down. I was too distracted with my partner's forced buy-sell of my business to give her the attention she needed. Yes, she was in the best hospital in the world. We knew the parents are responsible to convey subtle changes in health. Did we make our concerns clear enough? No.
How do I feel? Awful!
The many layers of pain come and go in waves. The anger comes and goes in waves. The trust, the peace of God? Between the waves? In the waves?
Where is the peace that passes understanding?
We know God loves us. But it doesn't really feel like it. But then our faith is in a God that is so much bigger than we can ever imagine. So we have this hope of a glorious re-union in our Father's house of many mansions.
Are we crying? YES! Often. Not always. Sometimes you see a smile when my heart is crying.
Tonight we celebrate Renee's life in Vancouver with her Vancouver friends. We are on The Drive where Renee enjoyed to shop and dine. We sooo miss her. We look forward to meeting her friends.
Call us 778.868.3195


  1. Raymond, Martha, and family. Having read your story in the Free Press, I was truly and deeply inspired by your family's bravery, and faith. I commend the honesty, and open-ness with which you have shown in dealing with such a horrific loss.

    Your post titled "How are you" is something I can completely relate to. I will not even pretend to know the depth of sorrow you are enduring now, but I do have some idea. I watched my big sister succumb to cancer a few years ago at the age of 39. However, I cannot imagine what a parent must endure when their child is stricken. I know the protective instinct I have for my children, and to watch them suffer from such a disease would be more than I can ever imagine.

    How indeed to answer the "How are you" question? I think your honest answer is the best way to grieve. If people do not want the honest answer then perhaps they should not ask. However, be understanding with them, I’m sure they care deeply but have no comprehension as to the pain you are feeling, and hopefully never will.

    Now that I have read many of your blogs and seen the family blogs and pictures, I can see what a wonderful young woman Renee is. You must be so very proud of the woman she became, and I'm sure have heard from many of the people she touched during her journey, and will continue to touch for years to some. There is a huge piece of Renee in all of them and especially in you that will not subside. My prayers and thoughts are with you.
    I read this quote at my sister’s funeral, it moved me deeply: “You were carried off in the miracle of birth, and so you will be carried off in the miracle of death. All that we are, all that we have felt for you, all the love that was given to you, will be your cushion on this journey. Now you will begin. I wish you love, peace and a safe passage ...”

  2. Anonymous11:44 AM

    We grieve for you and with you but want you to know this:

    It is not your fault. It is not the doctors fault. It is not your partners fault. It is not Martha's fault, or your children's fault, or the hospital's fault.

    It is not your fault. You didn't let her down. We live in a world of pain, but she is now in a place of peace.