Sunday, May 15, 2011

Thank You

I had hoped to post this yesterday, but I spent the entire day recovering from the physical strain of the long and emotional day that was Friday. And I’ve spent today writing and rewriting this post in my head, again and again and again, and I just can’t ever make it sound right or adequate or nearly even close to what I want it to say. For all the thousands and thousands of words I have written here, and all the hundreds of thank you notes and emails I’ve written, I still find totally elusive the words I really need to express my gratitude for countless kindnesses bestowed upon Ed and me and our families over the past year. I have repeated the same words and phrases so many times that I fear they have become hackneyed and that they fail to express the profound depth of my appreciation for all the hundreds of ways you all have lifted us in love, encouragement, and support at the same time as you have grieved with us and borne witness to our grief over the devastating loss of our precious Hudson. From the very first time I posted that Hudson might be seriously ill, the love has just been overflowing and never-ending—emails, text messages, Facebook posts, blog comments, visits, meals, gifts, donations in Hudson’s name, One Good Thing bracelets, books for Hudson’s library collection, invitations to do things, reassurances during an anxiety-filled pregnancy, helping us try to find Ed’s lost journal, One Good Things on Hudson’s birthday, sharing with us how Hudson has affected your life, making Hudson’s bench a reality, reading the blog and sharing it with others, and simply saying Hudson’s name and remembering her.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again (and here’s where I desperately wish for a magic pen to find adequate words): we could not have survived this year without all of you and your many, many gifts of all kinds, both tangible and intangible.

And Friday was no exception. The saddest of anniversaries, it was an arduous day, both physically and emotionally. But quite honestly, it was nowhere near as bad as I expected it to be. Some of that is just the normal pattern of this grief—the dread and anticipation of the hardest days and moments almost uniformly turn out to be much worse than the days themselves. But far, far more than that, the day was made lighter, softer, and more peaceful because of all of you again—hundreds of messages, posts, and comments of love and encouragement during the entire week between Mother’s Day and Friday, and throughout the day on Friday, each word successfully carrying a sliver of the weight of this awful grief for that day.

And then of course, there were the bubbles. Oh, the bubbles. I will write another post soon all about the bubbles, but for now, let me just say that every bubble I saw or heard about also helped carry a little bit of the weight of this grief, as I imagined each one carrying a tiny piece of Hudson’s spirit ever farther into the world where her light is so very needed.

For want of adequate words, I will just say it again. Thank you. From the very bottom of my heart. Thank you so much.


  1. you are very welcome...passing the one year mark brings closure to all the firsts. We move forward, forever changed. Hudson's life has enriched so many and though I never met her, I think of her almost daily. The image of bubbles carrying her spirit as well as some of the weight from your heart is simply beautiful. I will also think of her every time I see a bubble. I have Joe's little girl to keep me in the present, and you will soon have Jackson to do the same. Hudson will never be gone, for she lives in the hearts she left behind. I love you.

  2. Thank you for helping me to find the good in all things. Thank you for having the strength to clearly and concisely express your grief. Thank you for sharing your pregnancy so I can remember through you the joy and wonder and nervousness and sometimes fear of my own pregnancies. Thank you for letting me be a witness to the outpouring of love for you and Ed. It renews my faith in my fellow man. Thank you for showing me just how small the world can be--in a wonderful way. Thank you for WAY more than I have given you or could ever give. My prayers are with you.

  3. We are thanking you, Mandy, for sharing Hudson and yourself with us, for showing us the depth and breadth of the human experience, for allowing us to walk alongside you (and for supporting us in our journeys, even when you don't know that you are), for giving us the gift of reaching deep within ourselves and to reach out in whatever ways we can. Thank you, Mandy. And, while I would gladly give up all of the lessons and the depth that you and Hudson's life have brought to my life, for me, it is One Good Thing to know you and to have a glimpse into the beauty of your daughter, Hudson.
    Rachel C.

  4. Hugs to you and yours.

  5. Mandy, I agree with Rachel, I feel I want to thank you all the time for this gift you are giving all of us, letting us share in your memories of and love for Hudson. You are deeply inspiring to me as a mother every day.

    I also wanted to come by and let you know that I'm thinking of you four every day, not just the big days and anniversaries. I think that's true of pretty much everyone who blew bubbles for Hudson on Friday--her light, and your light, shine through every day, along with the light of the other young souls I am missing.
    Love to you and your family. p

  6. Dear Mandy -- You have clearly been the person with the 'words' and I have only been able to offer (((hugs))), thoughts and prayers. Do not ever underestimate your strength, your courage, your grace, your influence, your capacity to see beyond. I certainly with every fiber of my being wish that you NEVER EVER had cause to write this blog. Hudson and Jackson are without a doubt most blessed to have you as a mom. Love, Mariann

  7. Mandy (and Ed),
    None of Us who know and love you all could do anything else this last year. It's simply not in us to treat you any other way then we have. Though I know you always want the right words, everything you have written here is the right words. We could ask for nothing else.

  8. Please, oh please, as you head into the adventure/onslaught of life with a newborn, don't think you have to do it all and blog about it in a timely manner. Be patient with yourself, Mama.