May 24, 1973 - April 13, 2004

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A Mother's Choice

A mother's choice when

her grieving begins.

Her child did die.

"My God," she asks why.

Bolting from her being,

but what is she seeing?

She drifts far away

but she knows she can't stay.

The pain she to bear.

Her escape to no where.

She no longer remains

but now is insane.

Her mind does spin

as numbness sets in.

A mother's choice when

she knows she can't win.

The bargaining starts

from her shattered heart.

Her life for her child's

but she's lost in denial.

A mother's choice when

she can't breathe but then.

How to live on,

since her child is gone.

She begs her life to end

and her body to give in.

Her thoughts to her baby,

her choice and maybe.

She drifts into shock,

Heaven's Doors, she does knock.

Floating in air,

but she knows not where.

She can't withstand

what is dealt her hand.

She falls to her knees,

screaming, "My God, please."

But her choice to keep

her soul way down deep.

She will then bravely face

what she cannot erase.

She knows she can't die,

but "Oh My Lord," she cries.

Minutes slip into hours,

 she, with no power.

Time flows into days.

Her mind shall betray.

Days into months now,

yet she still wonders how.

Year by year she has walked

the journey she does mock.

Reality is what is

and she forever relives.

Yet, she still awakes,

to a possible mistake??

The years pass by.

Still she continues to cry.

A mother's choice to live.

but her life she would bargain to give.

The death of her child not to deceive.

She now accepts she's not only a mother,

but forever A MOTHER BEREAVED.




            "MY INSANITY""

Insanity is losing my only daughter to her death.

Insanity is my pain in grasping a whisk of breath.

Insanity is finding my daughter drowned.

Insanity is my Kanda, she floating face down.

Insanity is sitting my daughter's body upright.

Insanity is shutting off the water, never to forget this sight.

Insanity is 911, screaming her address twice, a third time.

Insanity is shock, "OH PLEASE LORD," she is mine.

Insanity is watching in slow motion, EMT's pumping her lungs.

Insanity is my knowing she had chewed her tongue.

Insanity is maybe a miracle, her cold body, possibly a chance?

Insanity is the reality, never again will I see her dance.

Insanity is the sirens' the ambulance taking Kanda away.

Insanity is my remarkable memory of that day.

Insanity is the waiting, "OH GOD," the horrible dread.

Insanity is the ER doctor's voice, BRAIN DEAD!!!!

Insanity is the leaving of my own body, somewhere else in time.

Insanity is who I am in my new life, my daughter no longer mine.

Insanity is bearing the excruciating mental pain.

Insanity is to bargain, my life for her's, could this possibly be sane??

Insanity is to beg for answers, why, why and again why?

Insanity is selfishly, asking, "PLEASE GOD, LET ME DIE!!!!

Insanity is minuscule memories of the visitation, funeral and tears.

Insanity is avoiding the casket, my daughter, my greatest future fears.

Insanity is how to live without my beautiful first born.

Insanity is no choice, after 4 years, I still heart brokenly mourn.

Insanity is to feel her presence, the calming wind that blows my hair.

Insanity is the knowing of what cannot be changed, still, I will dare.

Insanity is Insanity, and as a bereaved mother, I am still -----WHERE??????

My only sanity, MY KANDA, in Glory and Christ forever.

to disbelieve, NEVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

The year 1973 and freezing cold 

when you were only 7 months old. 

It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

Your favorite Christmas, 9 years old, 

brand new bikes, if only I had known. 

It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

Christmas now 35 years later, 

and my pain sometimes is greater. 

It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

This, the fifth December since you left, 

and somehow, we still do our best. 

It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

Our fun loving shopping trips, 

never a Christmas, did we skip. 

It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

How terribly sad I am without you, 

not only at Christmas, the whole year through. 

It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

My family so very wonderfully complete, 

last Christmas of 2003, never to repeat. 

It's that TIME again, 

to remember when. 

The True Reason For The Season!!! 


""Christmas 2008"" 







Christmas has always been the best "TIME" of year.

A great "TIME" of celebration, shopping

and good cheer.


Children begin working on their most important

"WANT" lists.

And to receive their chosen gifts, most children

do surely insist.


The "TIME" of December will flow into Heavenly

colorful nights,

The glistening white fallen snow will blanket

trees of all heights.


Past Christmas "TIME" memories we so very much


Reminiscing to the "TIMES" of old, what a delightful



Maybe a special Christmas Day is


as the hands of "TIME" each year bring forth another



Grieving the loss of our child will forever change

Christmas as was

Our family saddened, as Christmas "TIME"

is now just because.


Frosty mornings, the cold harsh winter air bites

us as we stare,

for only moments in "TIME." wishing we could

somehow go back there.


When our children made their famous debut in

the church Christmas play.

Portraying Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus and His Blessed Birth on Christmas Day.


Ah-h-h-h. . . . . . . . "A TIME TO REMEMBER."







Our lives seemingly revolve around the essence of



A TIME TO REMEMBER, those wonderful,

yet bittersweet

memories, inevitably crowd our minds.


Amazing is the magic of the sand as it flows ever so

gently in an hour glass.


The quiet flow will measure Present Time between the

Future and the Past.


An agonizing journey of grief we have to bear

and the harsh reality with absolutely no choice,

after the passing of our own child.


Indescribable are the days to follow, as we strive to

live with the pain and suffering, even a short while.


A TIME TO REMEMBER, our memories, surviving,

we managing in our own way, somehow, to live on.


Without A TIME TO REMEMBER, never could

we arise in the morning, to capture the heavenly

beauty of the early dawn.


We will choose cautiously, wisely, those special



and wonderful memories of the many past

Christmas years in the month of December



our child's first step, first tooth, first word.


Reminiscing to that glorious sound of our child

singing with the sweetest voice we ever heard.


But every realm of life is forever governed by the term,

"TIME,"  (when,)

it is time to sleep, wake, eat, work, cry, grieve,

mourn, again and again.


"TIME" rules our means of travel, by the hours

and then by the days.


A TIME TO REMEMBER, memories of the past,

maybe good, maybe bad but always with us to stay.


More importantly, the hands of " TIME"

will gradually lessen our pain,


Not to come to terms with the loss of our child,

many years and “TIME” remain.


As "TIME" continues by seconds, minutes, hours, days,

months, years,


we will treasure A TIME TO REMEMBER,

and in turn, dry our tears


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Almost 31, But 30 Forever


Your birthday of 30 years,

nearly brought you to tears.


I remember so very well,

30 years, no one would you tell.


Your 30th birthday passed quickly by,

no acknowledgement and no reason why.


How could you feel 30 was so old,

but the reason was your own, to me you certainly told.


I thought you felt your life was not going well,

yet you giggled, laughed, so no one could really tell.


Only 5 weeks from your 31st birthday, tragically you left,

and I have always felt this to be a sad sort of test.


Your 30th birthday brought you down in so many ways

Mysteriously, you only lived within 5 weeks of your following 31st birthday.


Strangely, you remain beautiful and 30 forever,

almost 31 years, but almost does not count, because you never.


Your birthday of May 24th, 2003,

you were 30 years old and always to be.




There is a season to be born, a season to die,

but giving up my own child is to ask, forever, why.


Approaching is the beautiful month of September.

Warm days and cool nights I do so remember.


Hot scorching Summer, too soon, it will be fading,

giving way to brilliant colors dancing and parading.


The smell of freshly picked apples, every color and every kind,

but our favorite choice we each will have to find.


Pumpkins galore scattered in the fields,

giving way to pumpkin patches that will always yield.


Halloween will come creeping in soon,

flickering Jack O lanterns beneath the full moon.


November brings the beginning, then,

allowing Autumn's annual dying and when?


Dreading the snow, the ice and what's to come.

My burning tear drops falling like a river running from?


Traditional turkey, cranberries, pumpkin pies,

shorter days with darkening early winter skies.


Approaching is another Christmas in the freezing cold air.

Christmas cards, egg nog, friends and family to share.


Holiday music playing for all shoppers everywhere.

Anyone ever think of grieving parents out there?


Children's lists carefully prepared with much consideration, 

as they eagerly await with great anticipation.


Gorgeous colorful lights seem now to sadden me,

but I am still grieving for my daughter, Kanda, you see.


Each year the holidays come too quickly because,

I will forever long for what once was.


Approaching most assuredly, Autumn and winter cold.

if only my child was still here for me to hold.


Approaching then, the beginning of a brand New Year,

Celebrations and parties lingering on with lots of cheer.


But I can't celebrate the brand New Year ahead,

I am still stuck in the past, remembering, "WHEN," instead.



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 (AUTUMN 2008)

Almost four and one half years now, you left this world, tragically and unexpectedly.

As bereaved parents have learned, we accept the fact that there will never be a letting go, most assuredly 



Almost four and one half years now, I stopped in for a moment during my lunch hour, April 13th, 2004,

noticing you sleeping in your four poster bed.

Haunting me since then,

"Why did I not place a loving kiss gently on your forehead?"


Almost four and one half years now, accepting that I will never hear you come running in my door,

yelling loudly, "Come on, Mom, let's go and for what, I don't know, but just whatever for."


Almost four and one half years now, catching a glimpse of a Black Sunfire Coupe

parked or as it whizzes by.

My eyes glued to the car, searching for you behind the wheel,

just one more time, until I could and sometimes do, just break down and cry.


Almost four and one half years now and, oh,  I want to hear, again, your wonderful voice,

but, as for watching, listening to you on video, I absolutely refuse

and that entirely is my own choice.


Almost four and one half years now, and how strangely, somewhat weird I do feel.

Who was I then, who I am now, but this nightmare will certainly be ""FOREVER,

"" real.


Almost four and one half years now, and you are on always on my mind.

I, a bereaved mother, ashamed, but there are many times I despise the mere thought of being kind.


Almost four and one half years now, but the horrendous guilt is still eating at me.

The "WHY" of your seizures, I should have helped, but I am sure you would disagree.


Almost four and one half years now, I have become someone I don't want to know.

Without you, I am unrealistically rearranged, my temper to a boiling point, how easily

I can blow.


Almost four and one half years now, I was to find you, April 13, 2004, the evening of

How did I keep myself together, I must have had help from


 up above.


Almost four and one half years now, I can live my life to some unimaginative degree.

But incomplete my family, everyday in a whirl , my heart forever broken and the worst is the knowing, there are never any guarantees.



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(After The Death Of My Daughter)

The Before: I loved our best friend mother/daughter relationship and all the time I spent with you.

The After: Will I always feel completely lost, yet insanely long for ""THE BEFORE" too?


The Before: How could I comprehend living without you?

The After: I have merely existed in life, unsure as to who I am, but managed to somehow make it through.


The Before: I so enjoyed our fun together, always giggling, always shopping, always running in one store and then always another.

The After: I deplore the idea of going anywhere, whether the destination be close or far, but especially shopping, what an horrendous bother.


The Before: I loved your sense of humor and your talent in teasingly shocking me.

The After: Sometimes I am still in denial and glance at someone, hoping, "YOU," I will SURELY SEE.


The Before: I never made a habit of going back to the time of your birth and the beginning of your life.

The After: But now I want to miraculously start all over again, snuggle with

my gorgeous newborn baby girl, this tormenting torture cutting like a knife.


The Before: I did sometimes think about the unthinkable, losing your brother or you.

The After: But at the present time, I don't have to think about the loss of my own child because, and even though I still have a problem admitting, it is now forever true.


The Before: It seems I took life with my children for granted in many various ways.

The After: I know of the possible tragedy or disease that may be sneaking and lurking so I pay more attention each and every day.


The Before: I enjoyed my life with two grown kids of which I was so wonderfully proud.

The After: I am confused as to what my life even means, because too much has changed and I seemingly remain covered thoroughly with ugly black dark clouds.


The Before: I knew who I was, and I felt I had my life, to some degree, under control.

The After: I can't figure out who I am supposed to be and there is still pure bitterness buried deeply down in my soul.


The Before: I felt so good when I would see your face, your smile and especially hear your voice with that unique quick wit and naughtiness.

The After: I am consumed with the truth that everything in my life is nothing but a total screwed up mess.


The Before: I thought you would naturally grow old as I continued to age.

The After: Now my life may still fill a book but since "THE AFTER," there will always be an empty page.


The Before: Oh, how you and I had settled into a great comfortable routine.

The After: I know it is impossible for ""THE BEFORE"" me to ever again be seen.


The Before: I really wanted to live a good life with my family for many long years.

The After: I am not sure about anything and so confused, but this on going agonizing pain is part of what I fear.


The Before: I would have never believed I could, even in a small way, survive your death.

The After: I wanted to die with you but I very well understand what all bereaved parents know, there is only one choice and I will strongly withstand this horrific heart breaking test.


The Before: Because I had no interest in emailing and surfing the internet, you would not believe I would own a P.C.

The After: I have built three websites, one especially for you, bank online, buy online, email and still can't believe it's truly "THE AFTER" my child died and unrealistically not.


"THE BEFORE" but the brand new, "THE AFTER" me.



reveals our lives on earth with you, our precious child,


sister, aunt, cousin, friend.


is our precious memories and those gifts you graciously left us and

to the Heavens above, OUR LOVE, we shall always send.

September 2008 


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(Christmas 2008)

""BUT WHAT ABOUT THOSE"" who are grieving, when,

the hustle of happy Christmas shoppers are

about, but then?


Seemingly, changes do happen each year.

That familiar Christmas music, we can't help

but hear.


Stores are bustling with shoppers and good cheer.

""BUT WHAT ABOUT THOSE"" who are grieving, out there??


Selecting the perfect gifts for those we hold dear.

""BUT WHAT ABOUT THOSE"" dreading ""must do"" shopping

each year?


Pay attention, store managers, open your eyes and see.

A needed private evening of shopping for ""the

bereaved"" should be.


Quiet evening of shopping for those who are

brokenly grieving.

but "HUGS' worth a million that we will be

giving and receiving.


And while browsing with others who also mourn,

will be a mutual bonding of hearts greatly torn.


When our lives, with family and friends, were more

than wonderfully sweet,

We could not imagine the suffering of those feeling

so very incomplete.



 Since 2004, I do certainly know.


 ""BUT WHAT ABOUT THOSE"" and the anguish each year?

There is a reason for the season, so as not to fear.

As Christmas comes round each and every year.



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She searched for many months

to find the perfect place.

Then surprisingly it appeared,

with the right amount of space.


She worked until the early hours

designing the house her way.

Mauve and blue for the living room,

Coca Cola decor, I heard her say.


She got right to it as quickly as she could.

Stencil and paint, it really looked good.

An ivy design on the washer and dryer,

now coming together to her own desire.



Coca Cola curtains became my responsibility,

bathroom, kitchen, dining and even the utility.

We searched for Coca Cola items everywhere,

driving out of town and going here and there.



She loved seasonal crafts and especially Fall.

Pumpkins, witches, scarecrows, she loved them all.

Even though she dreaded cold winter weather,

her porch displayed snowmen, standing together



We had moved her in the Autumn of 2002

and I felt she would now be safe all the nights through.

On my way to work I would drive by in the morning,

but a tragedy was in the making, we had no warning?


Her final touches brought her home to life,

but within a year and a half, it would take her life.

I had a strange feeling and maybe somehow knew

that everything was really all too good to be true.


I don't go near her home, that direction South of town,

for fear of catching a glimpse of what used to be.

Those raw memories would again bring me down,

her Coca Cola bathroom, that last time I was there

and held her, just my daughter and me.


October 2008


Coming Back To Life
As the cool air of Spring blows against my face
 I realize I am now living in a very different place
Unsure as to what is going on right now
But I believe I am coming back to life somehow
Seasons have merely passed me by for five years
Since my body and mind had silently disappeared
The loss of my daughter completely shut me down
Imprisoned by own grief, I was tied and bound
I had completely lost myself, my being
And to live life again was beyond my seeing
 A kind of calm has come over me this year
But I am confused because nothing is clear
Have I actually come back to life this Spring
Or is it a trick of my mind that doesn't mean a thing
And guilt is certainly a familiar aggravation of sort
Because my daughter's life was tragically cut short
I am coming back to life, is this person a "NEW ME"
Because there is no way I am who I used to be
Losing my job of almost 29 years
Threw me into another aspect of life and fears
Unfamiliar this new life I am beginning to live  again
Without my daughter, a new mysterious life begins

A wonderful trip to The Dix Strawberry Fest
is planned in May this year
Hawkins Orchid was Kanda's favorite place
especially the Fall of each year
Surprisingly, living life again slowly came about
When I was not looking and surely had my doubts
Yet, am I ready to come back to life so soon
Because I am secure in this protective cocoon 
Maybe it is time to start over this Spring
But am I truly ready for just about anything
Could it be I am afraid to live life without
my child
Or maybe I don't want to feel life
not even for awhile
There is no choice for me from what
I see
whatever it may be


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Don't Rush Me

Please, I beg you my friend, don't rush me
You can't know my pain, you see

After many years now, I still grieve
But what is normal for a mother bereaved

My entire life is upside down and changed
I am confused and completely disarranged

I understand you are very concerned
But you can't know what I have learned

Please, I beg you my friend, don't rush me
I may be grieving for more years, you see

I too wish I was not in this haunting pain
Yet, I won't let my child die in vain

Please don't say her death was meant to be
Can you imagine how your comment hurts me

To give up a child to death is the worst loss
We will protect our children at any cost

You can't possibly know what is best for me
If I choose to merely exist in life, let me be

Please, I beg you my friend, don't rush me
I'm uncomfortable and out of place, you see

The grieving process is different for everyone
I may be grieving until my life is done

Please don't say my child is in a better place
My child is not with me and what a disgrace

On weekends I like staying home most of the time
so don't judge me harshly, please be kind

Saturday, I may choose to watch movies all day long
Don't criticize me as if I am doing something wrong

Yes there are many undone household chores
But I simply don't worry as I once did before

I must find solitude in my own way
So I fall to my knees and then I pray

Please, I beg you dear friend, don't rush me
I am moving at my own pace since the tragedy

I love you, dear friend, so please pay attention
I encourage your support but don't be afraid to listen

I have lived many years without my child
To say I don't fit in anywhere is putting it mild.

In the Bible, Job's friends didn't understand his grief
But Job knew only in God alone, he would find relief

Please I beg you my friend, don't rush me
I must go through this pain to heal, you see

I surely don't want you to ever walk this terrifying path
It is impossible for you to actually feel my wrath

I truly appreciate my dear family and friends
But I have no expectations, where would I begin

After my child's death, an unfamiliar life was here to stay
There are no correct answers except God is with me everyday

I have heard so many comments and sometimes I cry
Family and friends are helpless, but feel they must try

Only the power of God shall give me peace
 I pray my heartbreaking grief to someday cease

How can I stop my grieving after many years
I rather doubt I will ever dry my tears

Crying helps relieve the unbearable pain
But to cry in public offends others, then brings me shame

Please, I beg you my friend, don't rush me
I am a mother, but always a mother bereaved


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Growing up in a small town with so many memories all around.

Flashbacks of those yesterdays but will it always be this way?

Memories greatly feared, but please, don't completely disappear.

Flashbacks once again,repeat, walking down city main street.

Painted windows of the stores, designed by the cheerleaders for,

Homecoming football games that will never be quite the same.

Noisy Kids' Playground with that awesome giggles sound,

and to remember when, if only a chance to start all over again.

River of tears along with those fears, for so many more years.

Flashbacks of the good and bad, mostly being awfully sad.

Death of one's child again, the grieving, never will it end.




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""Grief Bursts""

In Memory of Our Granddaughter's
Cheerleading Camp Performance
Flora, Illinois High School Gym
December 2007
In Memory of our Daughter, Sister and Aunt
""Her Cheerleading Years""
Kanda Michelle Jacobs
5/24/73 - 4/13/04

As I sat quietly in the High School gym,
 my mind wondered, remembering back when.

I watched my daughter for years but never gave thought.
Those fun memories would someday be feared a lot.

I really tried to concentrate on the basketball game,
but strangely, I began to think I must be insane.

Cheerleading camp had brought so much fun.
For the young girls, the week of camp was now done.

A glimpse of what cheerleading might be,
and a great chance for our granddaughter to see.

I tried to remain calm as I impatiently waited.
Their performance at Half Time, the girls also anticipated.

I remembered back to those years long ago.
In my mind I could still see her, you know.

There she was, my daughter alive and well.
 I thought to myself, how crazy, but I wanted to dwell.

I watched that old familiar cheerleading spot,
where my daughter did cheer, never could I have forgot.

I struggled with tears and a lump in my throat.
My granddaughter now finished, no more could I cope.

Hurriedly, I walked toward the door.
Down the few steps and then before,

I even had a chance to take a long breath,
a Sudden Grief Burst overtook me, nothing less.

Leaning against the building corner,
I realized then I would always be a mourner.

Sobbing uncontrollable and unable to move,
Surprised by this Grief Burst, I certainly did not choose


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"Halloween of the Past""


I remember going Trick or Treating every night of the week,

when the month of October was in the beginning of it's peak.


We frantically searched our parents' closet, their most personal unmentionable drawers,

in the hopes of finding old hats, suit jackets, well, anything we thought

might be of use, with the excitement of possibly finding more.


The most guarded secret, a previous discovery, our mothers’ sexy nylon stockings would tightly stretch down over our heads and horribly distort our faces,

and even though we had difficulty talking, seeing, oh well, our identities would leave no traces.


The late 50's, early 60's, those were the best of the best Halloween times,

and even an occasional ""Old Time Outhouse,"" still, we could find.


With my mention of an "Old Outhouse," mischievous deeds do not at all  apply to us.

Our parents, on the other hand, turned over operational outhouses, back in the 20's and the 30's,

but of course, those were only stories and never did they confess.


Then our parents forbid our removal of the single bathroom toilet paper,

so we would sneak out bars of soap with that familiar Life Boy invigorating vapor.


We were somewhat naughty brats at Halloween time,

running all the small city streets like organized partners in crime.


We laughed and giggled through out the dark and scary night,

until, out of the darkness, some older boys scared us,

BOO, BOO,  they were all dressed in white.


We already knew, by our many years of Trick or Treating, the very best locations for scrumptious homemade treats.

We quickly ran as fast as we could, to be the first, to the well known

homes on many familiar streets.


We packed in candy, homemade popcorn balls, cookies, and occasionally, even a little loose change,

and never, never to fear our loot was given by anyone deranged.


We immediately gobbled our fresh goodies since we already knew,the store bought candy,few coins and miscellaneous goods should,

more than last until Christmas, as our parents made it very clear, it certainly would.


I often think back to those great long ago Trick or Treating times,

comparing it to now, when we have to inspect every piece of candy, even a single dime.


I burned the midnight oil designing a few costumes for my two kids,

but, to my surprise, still they wanted to buy the popular costumes instead.


During the 70's, 80's, Trick or Treating had changed in our small town,

I walked, the designated scheduled night and time, with my 2 kids as they went down one block and then back around.


During the month of October, a special fond memory will always come to mind,

when my late daughter,took first place in the Halloween Parade, wearing proudly the Strawberry Shortcake costume I had carefully designed.


If only I could turn back the hands of time for just awhile,

to be with my son and late daughter, experience Trick or Treating,

and again see their young faces, both with a big smile.


Of course, Trick or Treating with my kids was not

always so much fun.

The bickering, my daughter accidentally, so she said, stepped on her brother’s extra long tails of his

Black Velvet Dracula Cape, WOW, the fighting had just begun.


Living without our daughter, the change of seasons, never to be the same.

Even as an adult, she loved Halloween and the Trick or Treating Game.


I am saddened as my grown son and I select a particular "SAFE" street,

so his kids, my gorgeous grandchildren, can safely Trick or Treat.


But my memories still go back to that long ago Halloween,

Trick or Treating, in the 50's, 60's, now that I think about it, we really were not all that mean.


We, as kids, had never heard the term, street drugs, now common drugs of today.

We only knew about the white pills, Aspirin, Anacin, that would take our parents' headaches away.


As I reminisce back to Halloween, the candle lit Jack O Lanterns and frosty chill in the air.

I miss my daughter so much and losing her, still, is so very unfair.


The colorful beauty of Autumn was her favorite time of year.

I can't help, as Summer moves into Autumn, but cry for her, a river of tears.


I truly had difficulty pulling together 4 generations, 

 the 20's and 30's, the 50's and 60's,

my own kids' fun of the 70's, 80's,

then lastly, my

grandchildren of the 2,000's, these times of Halloween's

 Trick or Treat,

but memories of long ago years prepared the way for me, this poem now complete.

In Memory of Halloween Past


In Memory of Kanda Michelle Jacobs

Written by Dianna Jacobs




MAY 24 2009
Our precious daughter would have been 36 years old today
She was born Thursday evening, 1973, on the 24th of May
"OH MY," how our lives have changed these past five long years
And it surely doesn't take much of anything to bring us to tears
Her Angelic Presence is felt in the warmth of  the Spring air
And also in the bite of Jack Frost as Autumn arrives each year
"A WONDERFUL LEGACY" she gave to us, her family and friends
Always to be remembered for her contagious laughter and naughty grin
Unbelievably six birthdays have passed since "that" Tuesday in 2004
Oh Lord, we can still visualize her in the variety of colors that she wore
We remember well as she made her "TO DO" lists for Spring planting
Flowers of every gorgeous color she did choose, beautiful and enchanting
Keeping her memory alive deeply within our hearts, gently helps ease the pain
As we must continue to travel this journey, burdened by a heavy ball and chain
During the normal run of a day, we jokingly mention many of her humorous snide remarks
Yet, we still end in silence, familiar this piercing pain, as we continue to embark
Aaron and Ashley have grown up so quickly as young children do
Their lives have been cheated without the love of Aunt Kanda too
Sleep now comes more easily as the years have come and gone
But we continue to wonder "THE WHY" in each morning's DAWN
As the LORD carried and walked along side us each and every step of the way
We now have learned to live without her, yet we will always long for the "YESTERDAY"
Springtime to remain bittersweet, those beautiful months of April and May
Kanda left us April 13th of 2004 and, of course,  May 24th is her birthday
Written by Mom
May 2009


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"How Many Times""


 How many times must I ask why

and how long will I cry?


How many times shall I remember

the shock, the anguish that still lingers?


How many times do I bargain

my life for your life, again and again?


How many times shall I pray to wake

from this nightmare that is no mistake?


How many times must I beg to hear

your giggles and to feel your presence near?


How many times do I disbelieve

and to myself I surely deceive?


How many times must I ask who I am

my future uncertain, not at all my plan?


How many times will I not want to wake,

fearing l may certainly crumble and break?


How many times shall I ask this same, this same

question and continue to play this denial game?


How many times will I think what could have been

hurting so badly just to remember back when?


How many times do I say your name,

since April 13th, nothing is the same?


How many times will the holidays pass,

you are not with us, my mind does harass?


How many times will I use your death,

my excuse when I can't catch my breath?


How many times do I become so angry,

thinking what my future might be?


How many times must I question your dying,

feeling insane but I can't help trying?


How many times will I ask God over again,

where was your Guardian Angel,  Amen??


How many times do I stand at your grave and grieve,

because I am forever your mom, a mother bereaved.



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I Close My Eyes and Reminisce


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

The last day I saw your face, now to Heaven, sending my kiss.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

Admiring you as your grew, always my Princess.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

Wonderful mother daughter relationship and Lord, I do so miss.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

Our fun trips out of town, never will I forget this. 


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

Your naughty giggles and gorgeous smile, an added bliss.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

Four year old Kanda and baby brother's sis.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

Your quick whit and bluntness, how you could hiss.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

The years quickly moving by, you my lovely Miss.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

Stressful adult years, your life amiss.


Sometimes I merely close my eyes and reminisce.

These precious memories I will never dismiss.




July 08



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""I Wish""

I wish I could begin motherhood anew

with my first newborn baby, YOU!!


I wish I could listen to your first magic word,

that word I so very well remember.

If only I could hold you in my arms while rocking you

to the sweetest slumber.


I wish I had cherished every moment of your life in our

30 short years.

But I never gave thought to living without you

or having to face

such horrendous unbearable fears.


I wish I had been more understanding on your

first day of school.

Instead I was demanding,

hoping to give your courage, I was such a fool.


I wish I had snapped pictures galore

every single day of your life

back then.

So if and when my memory lapses,

I would not be struggling to remember when.


I wish I was still dropping you at

Lincoln Grade School

for gymnastics practice by 6:30 AM.

And before work, there was extra time to

enjoy coffee

with my dear Auntie, a lifetime ago, it has been.


I wish I had enjoyed the years

you blossomed beautifully into a gorgeous young girl.

But I was too busy with house work,

laundry, meals, my life in continuous turmoil.


I wish I could walk down the halls

of Lincoln Grade School again.

Those years you were so very young,

if only I could take a journey

back then.


I wish we were still searching for those popular

shaker sweaters in every imaginable color.

When you were a teenager, we wore the same size


I was somewhat taller.


I wish I had not hammered you constantly

about your messy room.

Because, always to have you in my life,

I just merely assumed.


I wish I had encouraged you to further your education

after highschool.

You could have had a great job but


I was an idiot and such a fool.


I wish I could see your beautiful grin

and your excitement to the greatest extreme,

that first year you were chosen as one of the cheerleaders for the

JR High Basketball Team.


And again,

I wish I would have taken tons of pictures for all the

wonderful moments in time.

But it never came to mind that someday

you would no longer be mine.


I wish I was selling your Girl Scout cookies once again.

A dozen boxes of peanut butter sold to the president

of our company every year,

I can still visualize your sweet grin.


I wish I HAD to attend football and basket games

although not by choice.

If only to see you with the cheerleaders

and to hear your giggling voice.


I wish I had paid more attention

to your agonizing worry and frustrating pain.

Never did I think about you having a seizure

while bathing but

For Heaven's Sake, I am your mother,

how could I have been so insane?


I wish I had told you how much

I loved you although you certainly knew.

I had also informed you,

that no way could I live if something were to

happen to

your brother or you.


I wish, I wish, I wish you were still alive


I was buried in your place.

The worse crime in this world is the parents who

out live their children.


What a Horrible Disgrace!!!!



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"I Miss My Child"


Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

I struggle and strive, each day, to live my life but then,

an horrific emptiness invades and suddenly over takes me.

I face the tough reality as to what my future life might be.



Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

I close my eyes just to remember my daughter's naughty grin.

And confusion has it's own way of becoming overwhelming at times.

I can't believe at 4 1/2 years now, the mountains I still must climb.



Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

Her contagious laughter escapes me again and again.

I try my best to remember the sound of her precious voice,

but to view her videos, I won't, and that is my final choice.



Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

Numbness flows through me and my head begins to spin.

I feel totally out of control in my life as it is today,

if only I had known, maybe she could have stayed.



Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

I remember a special moment with her, if only to go back then.

Or when her dad tells me about his dreams of our daughter, and,

I am rarely that lucky, so I just don't quite understand.



Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

I forget and enjoy myself for awhile and the guilt begins

Feeling a lump in my throat, I terribly hurt to my inner soul,

and I soon realize how easily I could lose control.



Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

I drive by a craft store and suddenly remember again,

our routine shopping trips and my daughter's delicate caution in,

choosing the most unique craft item there had ever been.



Missing my child, I do, every waking moment when,

the thoughts that go through my head, this battle I can't win.

But my bitterness is starting to very slowly and gently go away.

I guess TIME is the answer and my living from day to day.



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""I Think of You""


I think of you when Spring is new,

April and May, the months of two.


I think of you when April begins,

sadness sets in, I remember when.


I think of you the day of April 13th,

the tragedy, my nightmare, emotions intense.


I think of you as May bursts into awesome color,

and the freshness of the wind that blows and hollers.


I think of you the 24th day of May,

your Blessed birth on that wonderful day.


I think of you as Spring turns into summer,

your flip flops, cut off shorts, with all the other.


I think of you climbing the antenna to suntan,

a young girl laying on the roof with lotion in hand.


I think of you all grown up and an amazing adult.

We had become best friends, unbelievably, nothing now was my fault.


I think of you as the corn stalks begin to dry.

Brings your unique foddershock designs to mind and I can't help but cry.


I think of you when leaves are the colors of orange, brown and yellow.

My heart breaks once more, and in self pity I seem to just wallow.


I think of you when Sunflowers, Mums are in bloom with magnificent Pumpkin Patches.

You were entranced with hay bales, scarecrows, jack o lanterns and Halloween witches.


I think of you when Autumn stubbornly gives way to winter,

not your favorite time of year, but your winter crafts sparked with bright glitter,


I think of you: at Christmas time,

the strangeness of the holidays and you no longer mine.


I think of you New Year's Day when another year is through.

Within 3 months, 13 days, I will have lived another year without you.


I think of you year after year until each and every long day is done.

With the gift of sleep comes a gentle peace, but with the dawn my pain has again begun.


I think of you and wonder how long my suffering will continue,

but there is no greater love than that of a mother and forever I will grieve for you.




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"In It's Uniqueness"

In it's uniqueness, horrific pain to bear.
Thrust from the norm, not knowing where.

In it's uniqueness, no words to describe.
If only to run away and forever hide.

In it's uniqueness, fear to anticipate.
What future path and direction to take.

In it's uniqueness, always to question " WHY."
If only a miracle, somehow this nightmare, a lie.

In it's uniqueness,  forever to weep,
excruciating pain way down deep.

In it's uniqueness,  questions to be solved.
A new creation of self will eventually evolve.

In it's uniqueness, nothing compares to the loss of a child
The unwanted journey and roads to travel, mile after mile.

In it's uniqueness, the haunting ticking hands of time,
if only to go backward,  if only possible, if only to find.

In it's uniqueness, a new life to be discovered.
When, where, what, someday, to be uncovered?

In it's uniqueness, there is nothing to compare,
this life of uncertainty, this life of despair.

In it's uniqueness, what the future may be,
but in desperation, no possible way to see.

In it's uniqueness, to experience the worst pain,
Lost in grief, no sight of happiness ever again.

Even In All of Uniqueness, God is always there.
Ask him for Help, he  listens to all our prayers.


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Is there a place where you are not,

to remind me of what I have forgot?


Is there a place to find comfort and peace,

where my pain will somewhat cease?


Is there a place I might see your face,

and feel your warm embrace?


Is there a place to mend my heart

where I don't feel empty and apart?


Is there a place I can scream and cry

when I think  you did really die?


Is there a place for mothers like me,

our uncertain future only we will see?


Is there a place and time when

it won't hurt to remember back then?


Is there a place I can talk about you

and not offend others when I do?


Is there a place to forever keep you

always in my heart, is this really true?


Is there a place I may temporarily forget

and clear my mind of this ugly torment?


Is there a place I will always find you

now and the rest of my whole life through?


Is there a place where others understand,

the loss of a child and together we shall stand?


Is there a place for bereaved parents to seek,

feel at home, not alone, a warm place to meet?


Is there a place to confide in others,

and meet with those who also suffer?


There is a place you are in Heaven's Love,

with your family, friends and the Father above. 



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"Who Is This Stranger"

Who is this stranger I frequently see
An older lady who I am told is me

I remember her with dark short hair
And dark eyes that sparkled anywhere

Where is the lady I used to know
I guess she left a long time ago

Who is this stranger that I saw

She's a larger lady than I recall

This younger woman I'll never again see

So the older stranger must surely be me
But why don't I recognize the person I see

With her gray hair and sad teary eyes
Perhaps someone she loves has died

A stranger that often hangs her head
Oh no, I do recall what must be said

Her daughter died, she truly knows
But that tragedy happened so long ago

I am sure it must be almost five years
Yet this stranger still cries her tears

So unfamiliar, this stranger to me
Since her child died, she can't see

This older stranger must certainly be me
Who is this stranger I would rather not be



Who am I since that fateful evening of April 13, 2004?

The "ME" who ran screaming to your folding bathroom door.


The "ME," shouting your name, but pulling out instead of pushing in,

my heart beating out of my chest, listening to the running water within.


The "Me," within only seconds, punching and pushing in the door,

only to see the tragic bathtub scene, I could take no more.


The "ME," who became someone else who did everything right,

but haunting memories of you, always I will have of that tragic night.


The "ME" refusing to accept you were gone.

I can't even remember how long this denial went on.


The "ME" who thought you would always be in my life,

 accepting now the painful truth that cuts like a knife.


The "ME" now searching for my new identity,

But how can I possibly, without you, find the new "ME?"


The mother of Kanda, I will always be

The same "ME" who would not face reality.


Lost to the world I have been,

The "ME" who still remembers when.


My future fears have now faded away.

The "ME" now accepts that you no longer could stay


My new life depends only on "ME."

If only I could figure out who the new "ME" will be.


August 2008



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Mom's Future Retirement

Written November 08

When I think about retiring five years from now
My plans have changed but I will be fine somehow

Nothing that Kanda and I talked about is the same
Those plans today are more like a cold damp rain

What she and I had many times discussed
Now seems so long ago, I must confess

I can still hear her giggling about all my free time
She figured I could clean her house and then mine

She and I talked about how far off it seemed
But to be without her, how could I have dreamed

She had grown into a beautiful lady, my best friend
My future retirement without her, what a sin

I worked all the years as she grew up, for sure
Retirement would have given me time with my family and her

Hopefully I will be able to someday retire 
A Flower Garden for my Angel, I will forever admire

She loved animals and the beauty of flowers
I know she believed April Showers brought May Flowers

Greatly changed is my future retirement now
but I guess if I make it, I will have to accept it somehow



After writing the above poem in November of 08,

I was laid off from my job of 28 1/2 years December

8th, 2008.

So as the last 2 sentences of my poem read:

Greatly changed is my future retirement now
but I will make and have to accept it somehow




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 "MY KNOWING," is: accepting you did die.

 "MY KNOWING," is: tears I easily cry.

"MY KNOWING," is: a future of uncertainty.

 "MY KNOWING," is:  unbearable distress to be.


"MY KNOWING," is: living without you.

"MY KNOWING," is: not being sure what to do.


"MY KNOWING," is: needing to hear your voice.

 "MY KNOWING," is: you never had a choice.


"MY KNOWING," is: what could have been.

 "MY KNOWING," is: your great future back then.


"MY KNOWING," is: never being the 'ME' as before.

"MY KNOWING," is: severely suffering to my inner core.


"MY KNOWING," is: not knowing who am I and who will I be?

 "MY KNOWING," is: "YOU" I still want to see.


"MY KNOWING," is: Autumn being terribly sad.

"MY KNOWING," is: memories of the great fun we had.


"MY KNOWING," is: Christmas holidays are tough.

"MY KNOWING," is: by New Year's, enough is enough.


"MY KNOWING," is: April brings another anniversary year.

"MY KNOWING," is: that you will never again be here.


"MY KNOWING," is: your May birthday will be arriving again.

"MY KNOWING," is: not seeing you since when.


"MY KNOWING," is: the torment that is yet to come.

"MY KNOWING," is: this anguish I can't run from.


"MY KNOWING," is: having you almost thirty one years.

 "MY KNOWING," is: so much I still fear.


"MY KNOWING," is: this nightmare will continue.

"MY KNOWING," is: I will always love you.


 "MY KNOWING," is: how long I will try.

"MY KNOWING," is: to ask ""THE REASON WHY."


" MY KNOWING," is: feeling insanely unstable.

"MY KNOWING," is: hoping someday to be able?


"MY KNOWING," is: not caring, at times, to live.

"MY KNOWING," is: the compassion, understanding I have to give.


"MY KNOWING," is: wanting to just forever sleep.

"MY KNOWING," is: these loving memories I will forever keep.


"MY KNOWING," is: this excruciating pain is like no other.

"MY KNOWING," is:  accepting "I AM" a bereaved mother.




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Pretense is various forms of make believe,
used by most parents who are bereaved.

Public pretense, yes, we know is expected,
to avoid our being crushed and rejected.  

We feel cheated when we must pretend,
but society demands it, we just give in.

When asked how we are, a mother, a father bereaved,
our answer is a lie, an untruth, that of make believe.

We are not fine in any sense of the word.
We can't be truthful, how totally absurd.

Grieving parents quickly become familiar with pretense.
We soon learn nobody wants to know our pain so intense.

We used to be fortunate after having a scary nightmare,
and wake, relieved, only a bad dream, never to really care.

We now may be granted a few nights of peaceful slumber,
but come morning, there's the truth, we very well remember.

Relatives and friends don't really want to hear.
To be uncomfortable, loss of words, they do fear.

We were once friends & relatives who lacked the right words.
and avoided those in pain, we now know how indescribable, this hurt.

But there is really little anyone can do or say.
We find our way as we walk this road every day.

Pretending is what our children used to do,
when they were young kids and innocent too.

Are we, grieving parents, somewhat like young children,
except we pretend to be fine, with our pain hidden within?

Strangers we have become to our very own being,
unrecognizable with  forever painful grieving.

Pretense, this amazing word of several meanings,
will mask our feelings to keep others from seeing.

It doesn't matter, the days, months, many years,
we grieving parents shall always shed our tears.

We are forever bereaved parents regardless of time.
To out live our children is the most heinous of all crimes.




Early Grief mimics a dark roller coaster stalled on the bottom track.

Seemingly, we are half crazed, with no hope of coming back.

But eventually, the seconds, minutes, hours do move into days.

We begin the healing process attempting to find our own way.

Struggling, we crawl up the tracks striving cautiously to make the hill.

Only to lose our balance, sliding backward to the bottom of the track, still.

The word, indescribable, marks this early road of horrific grief.

As we continue to live our life in total disbelief.

We have stalled and are imprisoned at the bottom of the track,

but, in time, our eyes will see more clearly, the possibility of coming back.

Journeying onward in our grief, we tend to sway on the track somewhat.

But we are in denial, the acceptance of our loved one's death is not.

Exhausted to a point of pure insanity as we live through the horror of our nightmare.

Over and over, we make this one and only statement, "It just isn't fair."

Swinging this way and that as we spin and whirl around.

But no relief or peace for our ongoing suffering to be found.

Months do finally and surely flow quietly and sadly into years.

We now have often faced those demons of our worst fears.

And we no longer remain stalled at the bottom of the track.

This long roller coaster ride has assuredly brought us back.

But forever is our grief and pain; thus never to have a choice, until

Our life on earth is over, and glorious eternity shall be fulfilled.



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Written in November of 2008 as I approached the 5 year

anniversary of my daughter's death



"Seasoned Grief," bereaved parents soon learn
will silently arrive, we each take our turn

Newly bereaved parents are completely at a loss
Unknown our path, what roads must we cross

We hold our child closely even though he/she is now gone
"Seasoned" we are on this journey, for which we  now belong

"Flavored Seasonings," we often sprinkle and we pour
as we share our loving memories with so much more

We "Season" our home with sacred photos of the past
as though we may forget the memories that must last.

As we walk our own journey, we often fall to our knees
begging over and over, "My God, My God,  Please!"

Each hill we will climb, yet, only to slip and slide
We are truly masters at masking hidden pain inside.

Unbelievably, the first anniversary will soon come around
when we least expect it, one year, with not even a sound

Our "Seasoned" thoughts do wonder what the next year

may bring
There is no map for grief and the unknown, this future to

be seen

We walk through the valley of time in each and every

marking the long distance, now accepting for "WHAT"

the reason.

Grieving has greatly "Seasoned" the body, soul and mind
Forever "Seasoned" the reason, we know we can't decline

Almost five years since our child left this place
"Seasoned Grief," we surely must accept with Grace  



As I near the fifth anniversary of my daughter's death,

I have given much thought to how I grieve, "NOW,"

compared to the very beginning and each year that

followed.  When I found  my daughter drowned in her

bath tub Tuesday, the evening of April 13, 2004,

I naturally went into  shock. To this day, I don't know

how I held myself together and actually did everything

that should  have been done.  I know for sure, at the very

moment I realized what had happened to her, I did go

temporarily insane.

As bereaved parents, we know our grief is unique only

to each of us. I also believe, in our own time,

we eventually become somewhat "SEASONED."  

I have used a unique package of "SEASONED FLAVORING"

to ease my pain: by praying to the Lord for strength,

maintaining my daughter's Memorial Website,

a scholarship, attending The Compassionate Friends

' Walk to Remember this past July in Nashville, Tennessee,

wearing embroidered Memorial clothing often and

driving my car stenciled with A Loving Memorial, in my

daughter's memory, on each back window.

I have also used this special "SEASONED FLAVORING"

by attending our local bereavement group, within only

a month of my daughter's death, also utilizing

individual and psychiatric counseling, including

medication, all with the hope of soothing excruciating

pain and finding some kind of solitude, an inner peace

as I attempt  to move on in an unfamiliar life. Yet I don't

believe I will ever truly know an inner peace as long as

I live on this earth because my family will never be as

it once was, a complete family again.

"SEASONED GRIEF," lately I have thought often about

those two words.  I will be 60 years old in a few

months and I think of myself as also "SEASONED" in age,

pondering where all the years, along with the

agonizing past 4 1/2 years, have gone.  I seem

to live in the past more, remembering the good times,

especially when my husband and I were raising our two

children.  If only to go back in time, to be that

young again, have those Blessed Gifts, both my daughter

and son in my life.  I know I would hug

them more often and small problems, such as a messy

bedroom,would not be worth mentioning.  Of course,

if I could go back, I would have the one Precious Gift

I no longer have in my life, my beautiful daughter.

When I ponder on these two words, "SEASONED GRIEF,"

I think how far I have traveled since the

tragedy of April 13, 2004, the tragedy that took my

daughter's life.  I even notice how others are also

very affected by my "SEASONED GRIEF," many I may

see at work, while shopping, at  the doctor's

office.  I sometimes feel as though others may think my

pain is over and I have moved on, living

life fully without my daughter.  Life does go on, right?  

Only bereaved parents know that we never

get over our child's death.  We never again live life

as we once did before we were given absolutely

no choice in becoming bereaved parents.

I am also "SEASONED" mentally and physically which,

I realize, is part of being a "SEASONED BEREAVED

PARENT."  I have asked myself the question as to when

I actually knew I was "SEASONED" in my grief, but

I can't remember. I have sprinkled and poured "FLAVORED

SEASONING" in every direction during

my horrific pain attempting to ease my anxiety,

my fears, knowing I am the only person who can give

myself  what I need to go on with my life.  

I struggled to help myself,

exploring every option available in support of

bereaved parents and will probably continue doing so.  

I believe that recovery from our child's death is an

ongoing battle, a battle we must face, as we travel every

"SEASON" of time, of life, of our own unique grieving

for many long years to come. We are always


At least, after almost five years now, others do not avoid

me as though I have a disease because they actually

believe I am perfectly fine, won't break down crying and

won't mention my daughter's name.  

I am treated more normally than a few years ago.  

Maybe that is good in a way because unless

we are bereaved parents,

there is absolutely no way to understand the

magnitude of this kind of grief and

 until we actually BECAME bereaved parents, we too

were the others I mention now, the others who

stammered for the right words, avoided uncomfortable

situations with those who had lost a child, those


I still cry, still hurt, still wonder why, still feel confused,

still become angry, still feel cheated, still want the
impossible, still blame God at times, but I  also have

Faith and ask for the Lord's help.  I will always carry

my daughter in my heart, am "SEASONED"  in dealing

with the loss of my daughter, which brings me

to my own conclusion, I am most assuredly


Our daughter's 5 year anniversary is 4/13/09  

In Memory of My Daughter
Kanda Michelle Jacobs
5/24/73 - 4/13/04



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Kanda, your lovely face I see,



I can hear your giggles just for me,



I shall always keep and love you,



And I know you love me too,



Sweet memories of you fill my mind,



Your personality, ONE OF A KIND,



You are forever in my heart,



Even though we are now apart.



I wonder who am I,



There is no answer, but I try,



Forever to eternity I send my love



To you, MY KANDA, and Heaven above,





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"In Memory of Autumn Past"


In Memory of our Daughter


OCT 2008





We enjoyed The Dix Annual Apple Fest of 2008

and our dear relatives joined us to celebrate.


This year is the fifth Autumn since our daughter left us,

and we will be forever heart broken, I must confess.


We made our Fall Plans well in advance.

We prayed all would go well and if by chance.


The Autumn colors, fresh apples, pumpkins we might enjoy,

because grieving had overcome us since April 2004.


Our grandchildren loved the exciting spooky maize.

It seemed quite warm from the hot sun rays.


They quickly figured out the maize's direction

and would run here and there without hesitation.


The color of orange adorned the huge pumpkin patch.

Each pumpkin was unique as though it had hatched.


Children carefully walked through the long rows

as cock-a-burs would stubbornly stick to their clothes.


The kids took much time in making their choice

and then they yelled loudly in a high pitched voice.


They would pull and tug the pumpkin with all their might,

As we watched, it was truly a ""Delightful Autumn Sight.""


Great music is relaxing and always opens the doors,

as adults and children cut loose, their laughter did soar.


Autumn was our daughter's favorite season of the year.

She arrived early at Hawkins-Schwartz Orchard since she did fear.


The gorgeous Fall Colored Mums would quickly sell.

She wanted a huge selection, then take her time just to dwell.


As we enjoyed the delicious Apple Crisp with ice cream,

we watched  the little tots roll their pumpkins and scream.


What a great time, yet sadly our late daughter would come to mind.

Her love of Autumn, years gone by, many memories we would always find.


The weather so beautiful, absolutely perfect from the start,

but this day we will remember and forever carry in our hearts.


For Photo Gallery, click below




The Warmth of Autumn

How can August be here again? 

The fifth August I've seen since then.

School Bells will be ringing soon.

Night sky revealing a large full moon.

Warm memories are bursting forth.

Anticipation of Autumn, well, of course

 Chilliness of Autumn soon to be here.

 Approaching more quickly every year.

Traditional Dix Apple Fest and,

 a pumpkin patch adventure planned.


Trick or Treating, I still remember when.

(Jerrin Kanda)

My 2 young children hauled the candy in.

Cheerleaders, Band and Football Games,

(Senior Football Night 1990)

the announcer reading off their names.

 Wiener roasts with wood smoke in the air.

Hay rides going down the road, to where?

 Fall Bath and Body Products at the Mall.

Our enjoyment of smelling them all.

The warmth of Autumn brings memories of you

 I face this fifth Autumn, somewhat, anew.

 My plans made well in advance.

Guests invited and if by chance.

An annual Autumn Apple Fest to attend.

But, still, the fear of remembering when.

Your car loaded with pumpkins galore

and every color mum and then more.

The warmth of Autumn, the colorful leaves

 But I, Kanda's Mom, will forever grieve.

In Memory of My Daughter, My Best Friend

My Kanda Angel



To view by webpage


JUNE 2008

After finding my 30 year old daughter drowned in her bath tub, I am sure I was temporarily insane for many months following this heart breaking tragedy, caused by a seizure, April 13th, 2004.

My daughter lived alone, had been divorced a few years and less than two years prior, purchased the perfect small house in our hometown of Flora, Illinois.  She was within five minutes of her job and only a few miles from her family and the home in which she had grown up.  

As Kanda grew into a lovely young woman, I am so proud she and I became so very close and best friends.  What a wonderful mother daughter relationship we enjoyed.

Kanda was a collector of everything, it seemed.  I always felt she was in search of that which she never did find.

Since everything had gone into probate after her sudden death, her dad and brother immediately attempted the difficult job of going through her personals.  During that time, I was in so much denial and would not allow anything that belonged to her in my presence.  Her dad decided to bring her dinning room hutch to our home and I was not happy seeing it there because I could visualize the hutch in her neatly decorated Coca Cola dinning room.  Maybe I did not really believe she was dead, I don't know.  After her dad had placed the hutch in our home, it seemed to intensify my anxiety for a long time until a rather unique incident occurred, but even then it took me awhile before I truly understood what was going on.

I began noticing the flickering flame in her electric lantern lamp quite awhile after Kanda's dad had placed this lantern on the very top of the hutch and plugged it in, probably around the latter part of April 2004.   As I would recline, my eyes would fixate on the electrical flickering flame and I literally begged my daughter to give me a sign, not believing it would actually happen.  

While I was watching the flickering bulb through out the years, finally something strange happened and I know Kanda sent me a sign.  The flickering bulb shot completely upward then seemingly burned out, but at that particular time I assumed the bulb should be replaced.  Goodness, it had been plugged in for a long time so I went about doing something else, forgetting  for a few moments, yet felt compelled to glance toward the lantern.  Wow, to my amazement the electrical flame was flickering as though it was trying to burn then it shot upward, the flame almost went out again, then shot back upward.

For a short while after Kanda's first sign, I still did not understand what had taken place right before my eyes but was in awe of this electrical flame.  Surely there was a logical explanation, I kept telling myself.

If I relaxed and gave my time to Kanda's lantern, the electrical flame would shoot up the glass globe, sometimes appearing as though it was burned out, then all of a sudden shoot back up the globe.  This activity continued off and on, would stop and steadily flicker, but never exactly the same each time it happened.  Finally I realized, for sure, Kanda had been sending signs all along.  My only problem is I can't confirm when I finally came to that conclusion, which month or the exact year.  

Watching Kanda's lantern has become a given in our home.  We always look toward the lantern when entering and leaving  our home.  While in our home, we always glance momentarily at the flickering light regardless if we are watching TV or maybe up from bed for a drink.  This flickering bulb will still go out at various times, no reason, almost as though it is teasing us, but we are not as quick to believe the bulb is burned out anymore.  Kanda loved to tease and giggle. Playing around with this electrical bulb would be a delight for her. She probably is perturbed at me for taking so long to even notice the lantern's flickering flame.  

Do I believe the on going flickering bulb of 4 1/2 years is a sign from my daughter?  I do, but maybe a bit skeptical.  I know for certain that our focusing on the flickering bulb has brought a sense of soothing peace.  

Will this flickering flame ever burn completely out?   I want to believe it is being controlled by an energy more powerful than  common electrical current, the forever love our daughter is sending to us, her family, in her own beautiful way.

As well as I know my daughter, she has probably tried many ways to communicate with us to no avail and I can imagine
her frustration. Something as simple as the on going flickering of a bulb in the lacy skirted lantern would be so typical of her.  If she can't get our attention any other way, then she would give us something to constantly think about.  

She was very blunt, almost too blunt at times and loved to shock people, especially her mom.   She would absolutely lose it laughing and giggling at the look on my face after she had made a naughty comment.

I also am aware that being raised as a childhood, as I was, with a belief there can be no contact with those who have passed on, diminishes greatly the possibility of recognizing the signs given to us by our loved ones; therefore I do not open to this possibility very easily.  But I so yearn for all the love I can receive from my daughter and I am learning more everyday.  

Certainly Kanda would come to us, especially me, because she knew what affect her death would have on me.   She and I had discussed death many times, mine and her death although I never felt I would have to live on without her in my life.  What mother would dare think the unthinkable?  I know she would try to comfort me and I truly believe my daughter is teaching me how to accept the abundance of love she still has to give, not only to me, but to her family and friends.


Kanda's dad and I feel so strongly that Kanda's ever flickering electric flame is a sign from her that I had written a poem about the lantern and added the poem to her website in June 2008
""The Fancy Lacy Lantern""

In Memory of My Daughter, My Kanda
5/24/73 - 4/13/04

Written by Mom

June 22, 2008  


Crafts shops, a many, were by far Kanda's choice
But "antiques" certainly heard by me, Mom’s voice  


Mysteriously, a Fancy Lacy Lantern instantly caught Kanda's eye  
Gently, carefully picking up her selection, of course, she would buy  


While Kanda purchased the lantern, a decision she did make  
Location for her purchase, how long possibly could it take


Her Coca Cola Buffet, Kanda's chosen place, there always it would sit,
 But why never was it lit  


 April 2004, this specially selected Lantern would then become mine  
After plugging it in, the flame flickering and working perfectly fine  


The bulb portrayed a fire lit lantern, actually appearing to burn  
Haunting me this Lantern, after 4 years an important lesson I have learned  


Oh, the wonderment of Kanda’s gorgeous Lantern
Drawn to the Lantern, fixating my eyes, now a set pattern


Reclining, attempting to cleanse my crowded mind  
Longing for Peace, that which I so want to find  


If only a moment of soothing tranquility and much needed rest
All at once, shooting the flame, could this be "MY” particular test  


But oops, seemingly drawn to Kanda's Lantern am I, as before  
Barely burning is the bulb, hence no flame, is there electric to the core

But surprisingly, flickering, disappearing is the flame, why, have I ask these past 4 years  
Incredibly, the lantern is onward glowing but brings forth at various times my sorrow and fears.


The flickering, glowing disappearing flame, possibly a sign from the Heavens above
And Our Heavenly Angel will forever send us her love

The warmth of God’s presence, granting us Peace while working his part
""PRECIOUS TIME,"" our only answer, God as promised, is healing our shattered hearts  


Still glowing, occasionally disappearing since April 2004, this flame from the start





from Mom,

June 2008




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(Five Year Anniversary of Kanda's Death)

(April 13, 2009)
I remember the season of Spring when I was just a child.
School was ending and most days were warm and mild.

During the 50's and 60's, life seemed to be refreshingly calm
and it was normal for us to live together with our Dad and Mom.

But even with Spring teasing us as it struggled to break through,
the temperature could drop and we may see a few snow flakes too.

With Spring came the beauty of colorful tulips and Easter Lilies each year
Winter was leaving and the geenest grass was again beginning to appear.

The buds of trees were ready to burst open into the splendid color of green. 
Providing a shelter for all God's creatures, especially the birds singing wonderfully serene.

A precious gift was God sent when I gave birth to my daughter the 24th of May
I had became a mother in this gorgeous month, 1973,  what a wonderful day.

April of 2004, brought tragedy that would rock our very own existence
Losing our daughter to an accidental drowning, we now would walk the distance.

The beauty of Spring became very ugly and gray for many years
May is her birthday, but April 13th marks another anniversary as we shed our tears.

As Spring approaches, it remains two fold bittersweet
With the beauty comes the harsh reality we will never defeat.
But with the unbearable grief we have managed to endure these past five years
God has been with us everyday as we have walked this unknown journey
and bravely faced our fears


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Without you, living am I, unbelievably now, four long years.

Crying, releasing raw, but occasionally, healing tears.


Without you, sleeping I must, “PURE PEACE,” my only way,

Waking to reality, I live without you, still another day.


Without you, lost that fateful evening, your 55 year old mom, ME.

Dreading the future, revealing mysteriously who I will be.


Without you, longing am I, to once again hear my toddler Kanda giggles.

Memories of that special toy that spins, squeaks, hops and wiggles.


Without you, clouding my mind, great memories of  basketball.

orange, blue, you, an FHS Cheerleader, RAW, RAW, RAW!!!


Without you, grieving fiercely, disappointed as my memory lapses.

What once I thought always crystal clear, now simply collapses.


Without you, now asked by many, children I have given birth to??

Kanda, my first, Jerrin my second, but in God's care, YOU!!!


Without you, upside down, spinning around, my world today.

Had I known your pain,  possibly on earth you could stay.


Without you, these past four years, haunting questions, why can't I just ask you?

Tricking my mind, denial, but I knowing deep in my heart, what I must do.


Without you, praying I do, Kanda, please come to me in my dreams, my daughter, my best friend,

but dreams are not mine for the taking, admitting must I,  losing you to the end.


Without you, inhaling your fragrance, sensing you are near, breathing in your familiar aroma, if only, I could  see you are here.


Without you, wondering to myself, Aaron and Ashley growing so fast,

What could have been, they being with Aunt Kanda, WHAT A BLAST!!


Without you, who I am, having absolutely no idea, needing a clue.

Happiness, where??  I can't seem to find, MY KANDA,

 and  I won't let go of you.

 (Spring 2008)