Be Gentle...

If you see me today walking around Target, dutifully placing my listed items in my big ol' red cart (and possibly tossing a couple extra things in, just to maintain my reputation as an impulse buyer), you won't know.

If you see me stopped at a stop light and I'm belting out a show tune at performance level assuming that nobody is looking (especially you), you won't know.

If you see me making small talk at the hair salon about last night's (amazing) Glee episode, you won't know.

If you run into me grabbing my Sugar Free Hazelnut Skim Latte with no froth (and of course being self deprecating about the fact that I can't possibly put on a full face of makeup, but I have the most high maintenance drink ever made) at a coffee shop in the neighborhood, you won't know.

If you spot me awkwardly juggling the three kids of mine that you can see (and praying to God, perhaps loudly that I don't drop one of the two that can't walk), you won't know.

Unless you read this blog, you won't know, that my biggest is not my oldest, he's not my first. You won't know that today is the beginning of a whole lot of emotional and pain filled days. Six years ago today, I had hung all my hopes on a little girl who was growing inside of me. My first, my "oldest - who never got to grow old", a little girl who we were expecting any day now because just 32 weeks prior, the Doctor told us that March 16 was the estimated date of her arrival. Six years ago today, I was crawling out of my skin wanting to hold this little baby in my arms, and never knowing that I would only get to hold her for 109 days. Her birthday is now three days away, but I can recite for you almost every moment of the three days leading up to her birth...

So, now that you've read this blog, and you know, please be gentle. My heart is tender with this memory that is six years old, but is still so fresh.

That's part of my story. But everyone is walking around with something every moment that makes them a little fragile. Even if you don't know their story... be gentle with each other.


  1. Beautifully written as always. Sending hugs your way. Although I don't know you in person I feel like I do and I think of you often. Because of your story I make sure to hug my kids more and laugh with them more and to enjoy them more because every second counts. Thank you for helping me be a better mom.

    Every time I see a butterfly, I think of you and Brady

  2. I'm so sorry for your loss.

    And you're so right- we never know what someone is going through, what someone has been through. We should all be gentle with each other.

    So beautifully written.

  3. i will never forget your beautiful sweet brady----i remember lots from that time, listening on the radio, news brought home from work, and meeting that precious baby on Mother's Day at Race for the Cure. You are in my thoughts.

  4. Thank you for reminding me to exercise my empathy, everyday and in every situation. I'm sory for your loss and thankful that you shared such a tender place in your heart with the world.

  5. Jumping over from PYHO ...

    Beautiful post and my heart is breaking for you. I love that last line "be gentle with each other." That's my new mantra ...

  6. A giant hug to you friend. You do so well at helping us understand something incomprehensible.

  7. Oh my gosh, I am so sorry. This brought tears to my eyes. {{{HUGS}}}

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  9. A quote that a collegue of mine has taped on the edge of her computer screen - "Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle."

    A HUGE hug to you Colleen.

    I remember Brady.

  10. Beautifully written! I'm so sorry for your loss. I stopped by from Shell's PYHO link from last week. I hope God gave you some peace on this day, that I kow has since passed. Sending you hugs.

    and it's true. We never know what we don't know about a person.

  11. i came across your blog while searching for the quote 'be gentle...' - wanted to share that with a dear friend who is feeling so alone in sadness. i hope you don't mind, but i also shared your blog with my friend.
    through your grief you've reached out to a complete stranger, and given solace. thank you.
    i do hope you too find solace and calm. your loss touched me, and here's a gentle hug from a total stranger.


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