Monday, December 13, 2010

Holidays


They say when life gives you lemons make lemonade, I say life gave us crap and we are desperately working hard to make flowers. You can say as the holidays come near this year it seems our sorrow grows with them. Every get together is a reminder of what we have lost and keep missing.

Last Christmas we bought almost matching PJ's for all of us and our daughters slept with us in our bed Christmas eve. They were so happy to sleep together and although I was pregnant and taking up more space then usual, I had a blast too. Just waking up to the happiness in their eyes and their smiles meant everything. So we decided to repeat the experience New Years Eve. My Birthday Bills family came for a roast beef feast and I taped the video on you tube of my girls dancing together.
A year later I have another sweet little girl but the void in my life is so strong I sometimes feel empty. I miss my Alesia so much that my favorite season of all, means nothing. I hate every event, even though I put a smile on my face, I cry when I am home, sometimes its my only way to fall asleep.

I am so glad I have my two little amazing daughters that keep me strong, because without them I do not know how I would be. Katerina is growing all the time doing new things like turning everywhere, has two teeth, and she babbles all the time. Maro had her daycare and Greek dancing shows and did a great job, shes a little diva who has really begun to pose for the camera in some crazy scary poses ( did not get that from me).
I wrote this blog today not to remind people about our grief but because I hope this makes everyone keep their children and families closer then ever this year. Give your little ones everything you can. Do not stress the holidays, embrace them for the time you get to spend with the ones you love.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Alesia's Magnolias


Yesterday was Cupcake Camp Montreal 2010, it went extremely well. They raised over $30000. On the weekend my nieces and Maro baked and decorated Oreo cupcakes. We also made 200 cupcakes in total for the event as well as sponsoring. There were thousands of people and we had a great time. Now its time to kick things in gear for Alesias Magnolias our fundraising event May 15, 2011 in honor of Alesia.

As time progresses more people want information on what this event will be about and how they can help and I am hoping to answer most of your questions today. Alesias Magnolias will be an indoor kids fair to raise money for the Montreal Children's Hospital, Cardiology department. This event will be held annually in hopes of one day raising enough money to have a floor at the hospital named after Alesia. Our daughter was our life and because she died we want to have something positive come out of this tragedy. We are forced to live without her and is it pains us each day we have to continue for our other children. By having this fundraiser we are giving to a great cause that we hope will save other children's lives so that no other parent has to go through our pain and no other sibling has to ask for their sibling everyday. At the same time it gives us a day once a year where we can cherish Alesias life and everything she gave us. Because she is not here does not mean she was not here at all, she will never be forgotten.

Alesias Magnolias will have various shows throughout the day like a fashion show. There will also be many different stations for the children to play like an arts and crafts corner, face painting, yoga, cupcake decorating, planting, video game corner, inflatables, etc. There will be food and drinks, snacks like popcorn. We will have a raffle and silent auction. We hope to have thousands of people attending. For a small donation there will be a big reward. Also each guest will have a goodie bag of free things to bring home.

As for what we need, we truly appreciate all the help that you can offer. This event will not be possible without, sponsors, and volunteers. We need volunteers the day of the event to keep eyes on all the precious children and the stations so that everything runs as smooth as possible. We also need volunteers before the event to help us find sponsors and delegate stations. The volunteers for before the event are essential, they are the ones that can help take charge of a station of their chose and tell me who we can send sponsorship packages to and how many volunteers we would need for their particular station also they are the ones that can set up the station. We will have meetings to discuss progress and I will always be there to help.

As for sponsors we need food, drinks, each station sponsored like face paints, inflatables, PlayStation's etc. Any monetary donation is welcome, the hospital will give tax receipts. Also we need companies to sponsor the fashion show. We will have a separate raffle for kids items and one for adults. We need raffle items.

If you or anyone you know can help us please message me.
My e-mail is sheydasenoglu@hotmail.com, just write Alesias Magnolias as subject.

On behalf of myself and my family thank you to all of you who have supported us and continue to want to help, our strength comes from you. Lets make Alesias Magnolias as great as my little angel was. I describe her as love and this event will be just that LOVE!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Cupcake Camp 2009


If you were someone who knew Alesia well the one thing you would know is that she loved food! When we heard about Cupcake Camp Montreal we knew we had to go just so we could give money to a charity and get Alesia cupcakes. I remember looking at all the cupcakes and thinking which one would my baby like. I got 2 boxes full and came home and she just shined the second he saw them. She ran to her high chair, sat down and devoured two cupcakes. I was so happy just watching her enjoy every bite. It really did not take much to make her happy, thus making us happy. Oh how life has changed. One thing is certain, cupcake camp is back this year and we did not just want to buy cupcakes, we wanted to sponsor because there is little more important then charities to us these days.

Evolution will have our own table and we will be making 200 cupcakes. We are sponsoring the event by providing cupcake carry bags with our logo and all the necessary printing for the event. We are very excited and so happy to work with the amazing cupcake camp team.


Cupcake Camp 2010 will be this Sunday 21st November from 1:00-5:00 at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth, Downtown. They are raising money for the Kids Help Phone, and Tablees Des Chef. Please bring your children there will be all kinds of fun activities for them. Our family will be there and Maro will be entering the kids contests with her cousins. Just in case this is not enough to convince everyone to participate, the contest judges are Chuck Hughes, Nadia G, Ricardo from the Food Network and many other interesting chefs. For more information you can link to their website http://cupcakecampmtl.org/2010/. Thank You for wanting to help and we look forward to seeing you.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Strength




It has been a long while since I wrote a blog post. No its not because I have been too upset or too busy, I have just realized i hopefully have a lifetime to write about Alesia. I just do not want to end up at a point where this becomes unimportant, I want it to stay with me as long as it can.

Our family has gone through so much already, it will almost be 6 months since our precious little girl last took her breath. Does it feel like that long, sometimes, considering Katerina is 3 months today. Then there are the days when it feels like it was just yesterday that I held her, smelled her, kissed her. Everyday is a reminder of how incredible this child was and how much she will be missed.

Since my last post we have received official autopsy results, showing the cause of death being due to an extremely rare heart condition called Endocardial Fibroelastosis. It attacked her heart suddenly because she had no symptoms and she died peacefully in her sleep. Our daughters have had tests already which have shown that they are fine. Combined with genetic testing which we will do soon, it will show that this was not genetic. They do not know the exact cause of this condition except that she may have gotten from a previous bout of Bronchiolitis, which was about a year ago.

Do these results make us feel better? I don't think anything will. What makes me feel better was that there was nothing anyone could have done or anything that we had done that caused this. Its just the luck of the draw. I hate it everyday! However I am so glad my other two girls will be fine because at this point that is all we have left, and they are the reasons for our strength.

Speaking about strength, we have ( when I say we it usually refers to my husband and I) gathered the strength and will to fund raise as much as possible for The Montreal Children's Hospital. I heard of a girl named Sara Cook she was 8 when she got cancer , she is now 17 I think, and she has the cancer again, her and her family have been raising money for the Oncology ward since she was diagnosed. Now they call that floor, sara's floor. I have a goal and that is to have the cardiology floor to be called Alesia's floor. My baby is gone but because of her we will save lives, she will do more then any two year old can, because she had a heart that big, that sincere. ( side not never wear make up before writing a blog post). On May 15, 2011, we will have an indoor fair, called Alesia's Magnolias, this day we will celebrate our daughters life by watching other children laugh, sing, dance, play. We will celebrate by saving others. If you or anyone you know would like to sponsor, or volunteer, that would be something we would greatly appreciate.

For now all I can say is picking out my daughters headstone was something I never thought would happen to me, and I do not want this to happen to anyone. Until something like this happens you do not realize how common it is, and it just makes the fundraising even more vital.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Happiness Through Alesias Eyes

This was what rest before bedtime looked like in our home
Today no different then any other day, I longed for Alesias laughter, just to hear and see it. I knew it was time to write a blog about all the things that made Alesia happy and caused her to laugh or smile.
That Infectious Smile


I truly believe from the day she was born her older sister was the main reason Alesia laughed everyday. Just hearing her voice would make her happy, there is no bond like the one two sisters share. I would pick up my oldest at daycare first and she would always run to Alesias class and Alesia would first scream, "Maro" with a big smile and then she would see me and she would always say, "Mama there". The way my daughters played and danced everyday, made them both the happiest children.

Maro and Alesia loving Each other

One thing Alesia loved was to be held she was truly the most affectionate child I have yet to meet although her youngest sister is coming close. Alesia was happy as long as she was held. We often wondered how she just never let us let go of her. Even as she got older when she would take naps and I would have a chance to take a nap with her when she woke up she could sleep another hour as long as she was in my arms. The first thing she did when anyone would pick her up was to put her head on their shoulders. People would tell me that she gave them a feeling of peace.
Any food she saw would make her smile! She could eat a huge banana by herself. A month before she died it was Easter and she ate a plate of meat and rice then some beans and a stuffed artichoke and bread of course. My entire family was shocked that this little thing could eat so much but she always did and was always smiling during the process.

Alesia Eating Away

Alesia loved music and dancing her favorite was to dance with Maro but about two weeks before she passes she had started Greek dancing with daddy. She would pick up the moves so fast it amazed us. She loved Beyonces song, "Single Ladies" and she would sing, oh oh oh oh oh oh," all the time. She loved singing, she had just started singing the alphabet, she loved Barneys song ,"I Love You", and of course ,"Twinkle Twinkle".

Alesia dancing with daddy


Alesia loved going to the potty and toilet. She was 18 months and had started going to the bathroom. She would say potty or toilet, she would say with a raspy voice, "kaka" it was sooo cute. Her favorite book was called, '' The Princess Potty". Each time she finished her business in the bathroom she would laugh and say, " I did it" or "bye bye pee pee or kaka".

Alesia and Maro on the toilet




Alesia loved her bedtime book reading routine, when one book was finished she would say, "again" or "more". We could never stop with one book. Alesia also loved dolls more then any other toy. I could never find dish towels because they were always somewhere in the house covering her dolls, "dou dous" as she called them. She had one doll that she never let go it was bought as a Christmas gift from her godparents and it quickly became her sidekick. Everywhere Alesia went the doll went.
Alesia and her Doll and Dou Dou

I could probably go on and on about the things that made Alesia the smiling child she was but I have one hungry baby and another one that has to go to sleep.

I love you Alesia, I miss you more then anything, you will always be my happy baby.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Baby Steps

I can give you all many excuses for why I have not written a blog post in so long, like I just had a baby, but none would be honest. I have not written because as wonderful as it is to have my beautiful Katerina here, the fact that Alesia is not here or will never be here has hit harder since I gave birth.
Katerina Zoe
I would like to start with all the wonderful things in my life like my new daughter. She is just amazing, as I type this entry she is in my arms sleeping. She gives me so much joy and warmth like all our children do. She was born perfectly healthy and she looks like both her sisters, half and half. I love having her around and there really is nothing like a newborn. Lack of sleep yes I do have that but she's worth it all. I love breastfeeding which I had missed so much, even changing diapers is great. I've learned to appreciate everything about her.

I also have to say thank you to everyone who passed by at the hospital and at home to see Katerina and gave her such wonderful gifts. We know everyone wants to do something to help, we wish there was away to make it all better.

Our eldest daughters birthday party was yesterday and I was so scared it was going to rain because an hour before the party it had, but I guess our angel was looking out for us and we got no rain until the end right before everyone left. We had a princess come to the party and Maro absolutely loved it. My sleeping beauty princess Maro got everything she wanted.

Maro my Sleeping Beauty Princess

I could honestly say that since Alesia has left and summer has arrived we have done so much and plan to do so much with our daughters because they need to have as much of a normal life as they would have if there sister was here, but with everything great for them, we miss our angel. It is not right that Maro had her birthday without Alesia when some months ago Maro celebrated Alesias birthday with her.

There really is nothing right about a two year old dying! I remember so much about Alesias life now and it just makes me so sad that it was so short. She truly was such a joy that with everything we do we miss her presence. Everyone thinks that we are strong and courageous but what is really the definition of these words? I enjoyed my daughters birthday for her sake yesterday but at the end of the night behind closed doors I cried my eyes out thinking of what Alesia wold have done and how she will not be here for any of it. I am sure she was watching and happy to see her sister happy but I wish so much that we got to see her dressed up as a princess with her sister saying, " Princess Mama" as she would while playing dress up at home. She loved balloons and we had child life sized princess ones which she would have gone crazy over saying, " Balon".
Alesia at her last Birthday with a balloon
I have to remind myself everyday that her sisters deserve everything we could give them and that this will not ruin our family we will make it through this in a positive way. Of course this is all after I've had my morning cry the one where I wake up and realize life without Alesia is a reality not a dream and that I must wake up and live.

As time passes I miss her so much more that I forget about everything else and just become immersed in sorrow. Strange as it is I also understand that as time passes this is going to become more distant and I will learn to live life without crying ten times a day. At the same time Alesia will never be forgotten through this blog, in our memories, and especially in our hearts.

I feel sorry for my children that they do not get to share there life with her or shall I say enjoy her presence and love. At the same time I am always conflicted with the sadness and joy I have in my life. I truly do not believe life will ever be normal again, when your heart breaks like this it can never be mended. I still experience joy and laughter, I love my children and husband with all my heart that's left but the problem is my heart is just not the same. We have to learn to live in a different way to enjoy what we have even though this has happened but really this is such a slow process. Small baby steps, I guess with my new daughter discovering everything about life, we will too. Katerina will learn to walk in the next year, Maro will experience preschool and WE will learn to live our NEW life together.

Our new family


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Daddy's letter to Alesia



My Dearest Alesia,

I miss you so much, little one....It’s been 74 days since you left us. I still remember it fresh in my mind, when the doctor’s walked into the room we were in, to tell us they had done all they could but that you had died....



For the first time in daddy’s life, I had been beaten, totally defeated. Never before was I presented with a situation where I could not fix, or work very hard and endlessly to fix,something that had gone severely wrong. For the first time in my life, I was completely lost. But it was only for a moment. Something strange happened soon after mommy and I were brought to the room where your tiny body lay. I felt overcome with love, compassion, and understanding.I had often thought of how I would react if a tragedy such as your loss would ever occur to me.Everything I had envisioned, the rage, the anger, the hate, the need for revenge....I felt none of that. I felt like all i wanted to do at that moment was hold you, hold mommy, cry, and cry and cry, (which I did.....) and to gather everyone we cared about, to surround us all with love, your love!

I felt your love surrounding us, as mommy and I held you, and rocked you and touched every inch of your body, carressed your hair. I felt your love as I sang your favorite song, you knowthe one, “perdikoula”, the one before I put you to sleep every night. I felt your love everywhere in that hospital May 1st. And you know what, Baby? It picked me up.....It picked me up in a waythat I never imagined I would be able to. From that feeling of defeat I had felt when I recieved the terrible news that you had gone, It quickly changed to one of pure love, drive and purpose!

Alesia, you gave us so much strength to simply survive the week that we had ahead of us! We were often confronted with comforting the people, the friends and family who had come to comfort us. And they were amazed!! They thought mommy and I were high on drugs!!

Remember when your “nono” walked with me to our home, to keep an eye on me in case I had a breakdown? Wasn’t it funny that it was me who ended up keeping an eye on him, while he had the breakdown?

And the strength you gave Mommy, to be OK, for her and your soon to be sister....WOW!!!Thank you, little one, you made her a stronger person! And the joy you have brought Marouli these past months, the way you make her laugh and dance and play, when we are in situations where we worry about how she is going to react, like when we brought her to see your “pink box” and the funeral home, and the flowers there were so brilliant and looked amazing and smelled wonderful...., and Maro just loved being there.....and it gave us a sense of relief, and calmness. We were happy she got to say good bye to you.

And remember all the people that came to pay their respects and say bye....WOW!!! So many...you brought people to us, that we had not seen in some cases, for 25 years!!! You brought estranged family back to us, who we had missed for so many years!! You brought new people to us, who we had never met before, but wanted to share in our sadness and offer their support. You created an environment where everybody felt love, wanted to give love and accept it as well...from anyone!! It was not what I thought it was going to be.

Alesia, little one, my lovely girl, I loved every minute of the 774 days you spent with us. Youtought us the true meaning of love, pure love, because you gave it, freely, Your hugs were all encompassing, and your tiny little arms felt like they were hugging my entire body! Your laughter was infectious, your expressions priceless, and the face, that’s what we call it, the face, the one you gave to those you were not sure of, we will never forget!! Your, “I love you”, I realize now,was your favorite expression, because you meant it, even though you were so young...you knew what those three words meant and what they signified, and how powerful they were!!

I remember everything about you, your first real steps, and how we were excited about them!One....two...three.....four, five sixseveneight.....into mommy’s arms!!! You were a great daughter, an amazing loving sister, and a loving little person to everyone....even the animals!! They miss you like crazy.... Mikey misses you.....as does Mia,she is always going to your room, looking for you....I am sure she feels your presence...I know I do....especially these past couple of weeks...I feel you....I feel as though I can reach my hand out and touch you....Like you're so near....I try every day! ;-)

I know you are always around, I know you are watching over us, and making sure we are well. I know your sisters will always be OK, because you love them so.......remember how you would rub Almond oil on mommy’s belly, and how you would kiss katerina? You were incredible. Watch out for your baby sister. She is coming tomorrow, make sure everything goes great and go to her, she would love to have you around. She will see and hear you. Her mind is open now, to everything, not corrupted by age and conditioning like most of us...go to her...tell her who you are...love her like you did us....guide her! And Maro of course!!!! Maro especially!!....She misses you, and talks about you so much....She tells me how much she loved you....and is excited that you are now an Angel! take care of her as well!!

And Mommy.....make sure you keep giving her the strength to get over her sadness....to make sure that Katerina will get all the love and caring and affection and fun that you did, and for all the rest of your brothers or sisters that may be coming!! ;-)

Thank you Alesia, Thank you thank you thank you, a million times thank you!You gave me more than I could ever ask for, love, compassion, caring, laughter....You were pure joy! Thank you for choosing me to be your daddy. Thank you for your hugs, thank you for the greatest memories a man can ever ask for! You have taken all my fear away....You have given me freedom to take on the world and make it a better place....a more loving place. I know that when My time comes, I will not be afraid to let go of this world....I know you will be right there waiting for me....on a staircase, holding a doodoo ( blanket) to cover me up and keep me warm...and i cannot wait for that hug!!!I miss you!I love you!

I will always and forever remember you, every day, every hour.....always.....And I will remember our last car ride, where I turned my head to you in the back seat, and stuck out my tongue...and you smiled...and leaned forward...and stuck it out right back at me.....and we laughed.....and of course countless of other moments!!

Your sister is coming tomorrow!
I am off to shave, because I want to smother your new sister with kisses. I need to be soft. I know, I know, you never minded about my beard....;-) But she’s new! She might!! And I have many kisses to give her from you!!

See you when I see you!

Love always

Daddy

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Confusion


Starting this week it seems as though I am just so confused and full of mixed emotions! Yesterday we finally prepared a corner in Katerinas room that we reserved for Alesia, that was not so bad. Then as I was looking for something I found Alesia 1st picture with Santa, I broke down. After that Bill had washed the last week of laundry she had, after over two months, and I knew how hard that was for him so I decided to fold them. I was glad I was alone because I was screaming crying! Now I just don't know what to do with that laundry I have left it folded in a basket, I want to just put it away for her to wear so badly. As if that was not enough I found my old weight watchers books and in my 1st tracker the fourth day writes, " In the hospital, Alesia seizure". We had spent a night there just to monitor her and she was fine, just a Febrile seizure. Yesterday after all that I felt like my heart was taken out and completely pressed through a food processor and put back into my body.

Why am I so confused, is because in two days if there is a God, my baby Katerina will be born healthy and be in my arms, but two months ago my baby Alesia who was known to be healthy left me. I keep asking how could I be so happy and sad at the same time! There is nothing fair in the idea that I will be having 2 children when that's what my life was for the last two years, there's nothing fair in the fact that Katerina will not come home to two sisters and there will never be anything fair in knowing that our family will never be complete and that we will always have a missing link.


Honestly I really can't wait to hold and be with Katerina, for myself but also for Maro who kisses my tummy and talks to it constantly. She asks sometimes if Katerina is going to the sky too and we have to reassure her that she will be here with us and nowhere else ( reassuring her is almost like we are doing the same for us). She said once that Katerina was coming because Alesia left, we tried to explain that she is not going to be a replacement and that she was there before Alesia left. How much her soon to be four year old brain understands is astonishing.

I have less then 48 hours for my c-section and everything is ready, although I keep finding more things to prepare because I am so anxious. The next post I write might take a while but my husband Bill wants to do a guest blog post so there will be one in between.

Thank you to all of you who keep sending messages, they mean a lot. Thank you to those of you who can't wait for another post, it really helps to know someone is listening. I will hopefully post pictures of our new addition soon!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Alesia and Maro

It is one thing to have lost our precious daughter but the daughter we have left has lost her sister. If you have a sister you know there worth. My daughters had 20 months apart and they were inseparable. I loved watching every moment of their play, and bonding. Now Maro plays by herself, she has tea parties and all sorts of new games but my heart aches every time I watch her. Most siblings at these ages (almost 4 and 2) will fight and play, my daughters only argued to play with each other. They wrestled in bed like boys, they played dolls and house like the girls they are. Maro called Alesia her toutoush ( I have no idea where she got that from). The first word that came out of Alesias mouth every morning was MARO.

Maro understands as much as she can about what has happened but sometimes she mixes things up like saying, " Mommy now her bo bo is gone and shes going to come back". Then she says she sees her every time she sees a bird or butterfly. We are trying to make her understand that she is an angel very high in the sky, that we can't see and that her spirit is with us, but it will take some time for her to understand this concept. We have to tell her all the time that shes not coming back and in some ways we are reminding ourselves of this sad reality at the same time.

I asked Maro yesterday who her best friend was and I was expecting her to say one of her friends from daycare (after her daddy ofcourse) but instead she had to stop herself from saying Alesia. How can you not be sad after that! Maro has lost her sister and best friend and on top of that can only understand a small part of what has really happened.


video

Maro and us as a family are really happy Katerina will be here soon but as my previous post states she is another individual child, she is not the one we lost. This does not mean she will not give us the joy all our children give but for Maro it will be a while until she can really play with her. I have been preparing Maro in telling her that the baby only eats, sleeps and has many diapers to change. I've let her in on how she will help me with her in every step but she still thinks she can just hold her and play for now.

Honestly I do not worry too much about Maro because she talks about all that has happened in a healthy way and yes at times she displays anger and frustration she did not have before but I can't blame her for that. At one point when she met new people she would say, " My name is Maro and my sisters dead". Now she has stopped that and she talks more about baby Katerina. Children are much more resilient then we think.


We will never stop talking about Alesia to our daughters as they grow up and that is the main reason I am writing this blog, because she was here and she was a great sister to both her sisters. She has and will continue to give so much to them that they will one day understand like we will.

As for Katerina I will never forget one day I was sitting on the rocking chair in the nursery with Alesia and she put my shirt up and she kept laughing and tickiling my tummy at the same time. At that moment the sibling bond had already formed and we sat there for a good ten minutes, just laughing, and Katerina just kicked and moved all over the place. Every night Alesia would rub oil on my tummy with a huge smile. Every time she saw a baby she would get so happy and I would say, " Soon baby Katerina will be here for you". I wish with everything inside of me that this would be the case but its not and I hope she is surrounded with babies where she is and is going to watch over her sisters every day and protect them from this cruel world.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Thankful


I cannot begin to express how much I miss my baby girl. There are days I prepare her sisters nursery in her room and I feel so happy to have this new baby, and at the same time it is just so bittersweet. One love gone and one to come. Katerina is moving like crazy all the time and being a good girl, which gives me strength each day, as she will when she arrives. My heart is filled by my oldest and soon my youngest but my heart aches everyday for what I have lost and will never get back.


If you are pregnant and reading this be joyful that you have a full heart to give your newborn. If this is a second or more child be happy your family is growing and all the siblings have each other. If you are not yet a parent, hopefully one day you will be and I promise you it will be the best thing in your life forever, be grateful, be thankful and cherish every minute.



As I get closer to my c-section I get happier to know I will have my new daughter to keep me busy especially when my oldest goes to daycare. At the same time I wonder all the time how all of a sudden I went down to having two children instead of three. I had mentally started preparing myself to what life was going to be like, hectic and incredible, now its what I have known for the last 2 years except with another individual child.





I wish so much this never happened and my Alesia would be running to say, “I love you mama”, and to give me a kiss right now but this is what it is. Yes sometimes I am bitter and I look at people who have there two year olds and I just want to curl up and die inside, but then I am just so happy they are here where they belong. A child should never be separated from its loving parents, because as strong as we can be for our families especially our children, this is so unbearable sometimes.

To end this post I wanted to include a part of what I wrote 2 days after I lost Alesia, to sum things up if I was ever given the choice not to have her and to never have to go through this pain, I would never say yes. I am so thankful for all she gave and all she will continue to give this World. I have to like you are as a parent continue to be unselfish and let my daughter slowly make a difference in all of your lives and ours!

I’M THANKFUL FOR ALL THE TIMES YOU SLEPT IN MY ARMS AND HELD ME OH SO TIGHT
I’M THANKFUL FOR EVERY “ I LOVE YOU” WE SHARED
I’M THANKFUL FOR ALL THE LAUGHS YOU GAVE
I’M THANKFUL FOR SO FEW TEARS AND PAIN YOU HAD AND THE INNOCENCE YOU WILL ALWAYS HAVE.
I ALWAYS SAID I WANTED YOU TO STAY SMALL, MY BABY, AND NOW YOU WILL FOREVER BE MY BABY.
THERE REALLY ARE NO WORDS TO DESCRIBE HOW WRONG ALL OF THIS IS BUT THERE IS A REASON AND WE WILL FIND IT IF IT’S THE LAST THING WE DO!


Monday, June 14, 2010

Patience Is A Virtue


Some people are born and die living life impatiently, my two year old daughter exhibited more patience than most adults. She waited until her c-section date came there really was no rush, okay maybe she did have an urgency to eat in the operating room, but from then on she waited patiently for me to feed her.

I have to admit she wanted to get somewhere because at 6 weeks old I had put her on the floor and she turned over. When she was 3 months old she would crawl and wiggle her way out of her car seat and start moving like a snake on the floor. When she was 6 months old she started sitting and crawling, that was when we realized this child did not want to be a burden on anyone she had her own mind and will to get things done herself. Soon she was standing so we thought she's going to walk by like 10 months but boy did she take her time walking, she was exactly 13 months old and off she went. I think she took her time to walk because she wanted to savor every minute of being held as she could and I am so thankful for that. What's is this rush we have with life and our children, where are we trying to go or get them to go? They are so perfect the way they are it is not up to us to brag about when they walk, talk, etc, each child is their own individual can we just allow them to shine on their own please!


Alesia could stay in her high chair and eat all day with not one complaint. She was a foodie that is certain. She was the first to eat her food at daycare and at times her teacher needed to take her food away before she put it all in her mouth at once. There was never a need to push her to eat or ask her to because she made it very clear when and what she wanted to eat. What or who it was given by rarely mattered as long as it was given with a smile. Most weekends she would finish her breakfast and while her impatient sister left her plate of food she would run and finish her sisters breakfast too!

At 2 years old Alesia had the patience to play with the same toys for hours (dolls) when most two year olds have an attention span of 5-10 minutes. Every morning when my husband would wake up to go the bathroom Alesia would follow and wait outside the door on our stairs quietly sometimes for 15 minutes or more until he came out and she would greet him, "good morning daddy".


Alesia was not even two years old and she had started potty training, she had the patience to sit and wait on the toilet or potty. She would say kaka or pee pee, and she loved it! I could leave her with no diaper for a half day at times and when she had to go and a little would slip she would go crazy running to the toilet and holding it in until she got there all the while saying, " Mama pee pee, pee pee". Aah my baby we were so close to getting rid of those diapers and I was so happy, now I wish I had a diaper to change.

At such a young age Alesia could teach all of us to be more patient and that somethings are worth waiting for. We don't need to rush because all of this will end one day and no one knows if its tomorrow or many years from now. If there is one thing I know now is that my family is all that matters and every second I have I want to spend and live for them, please enjoy what you have and be patient!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Coping Through This Tragedy


On Saturday June 5Th 2010 we had Alesia's 40 day memorial, which included going to church and our community center for cookies, bread , cheese and koliva from the Greeks and helva from the Armenian's. It was a gathering for everyone who wanted to remember Alesia. It seems as though each time we gather like this whether it was for the funeral home, funeral, or the 40 days, it just seems unreal to me. Can it be that its for my little baby, yet each time the answer is yes, my baby is gone and I must continue living, yet something about that just is not right.

As time passes reality hits harder and harder and I feel like my entire life has been shattered to pieces. How something so small can give so much life is still beyond me. I miss everything about my baby, her smell, her hugs and kisses, her laughter, but my heart breaks the most when I have to watch her sister play all by herself. They were the
perfect sisters hugging and kissing and playing with each other all the time, they rarely fought. I thought I was the luckiest mom.




Each day I prepare more and more for our new daughters arrival and I anticipate this birth so much for our entire family. She will be a new start and a new life that will give me more meaning right now. I keep myself busy these days with the preparation of her nursery. I began painting the letters of her name for her bedroom today. I felt really happy as I was painting it was almost like I forgot what had happened. I guess I've also begun nesting because I organized so many things in this house today. I even prepared my hospital bag, my daughters bag for grandma, and our new additions bag. I am so thankful I have Katerina Zoe to look forward to but it does not make the loss any easier, this is a new life not a replacement for my angel.

I am emotionally, and physically completely drained, I just wonder when this will get a little easier. A loss like this is the hardest thing a person has to ever suffer from, because it never truly heals, I will always have a hole in my heart that will never heal. I laugh, I enjoy my family but there is and will always be someone missing. I am supposed to bring Katerina home to both her sisters and instead I only have pictures and memories of one to pass on to her.

If you are a parent reading this please enjoy your children even more than usual, give them extra hugs and kisses, and never take for granted the noise in your home because its the sound of life and love, a sound I miss everyday.



AS A FINAL NOTE I WOULD LIKE TO ADD THAT SINCE OUR DAUGHTERS DEATH WE HAVE SET UP AN ALESIA STAVROULA KARIDOGIANNIS FUND AT THE MONTREAL CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL. THANKS TO MANY PEOPLES GENEROSITY WE CONTINUE TO RECEIVE CARDS FROM DONORS WHICH WE REALLY APPRECIATE. THANK YOU SO MUCH AND PLEASE CONTINUE YOUR DONATIONS! WE DON'T WANT ANYONE TO HAVE TO GO THROUGH SUCH A TRAGEDY AND LOSS!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Alesia's Birth


For a long time I thought about what I would write for my first memory post about Alesia, and I just thought it was fitting to talk about my angels birth. I had a terrible delivery for my first daughter so with Alesia I was scheduled for a c-section on March 14, 2008. As I got bigger and the day got closer my doctor said they only do c-sections a week in advance now, and that the date would be changed to March 18, 2008. Why I am mentioning the importance of this date is because my dear grandmother, that I was close to like a mother had passed away years ago on that exact day and now that day was our special, happy day. We were so happy on this day, it was my first c-section and surgery in my life, and I walked into the operating room laughing. As they placed my spinal I was joking around with the nurses, I truly was in bliss.

Our angel came out crying and sucking, as the nurse cleaned her she was saying how she was hungry because you could just see her mouth moving like a fish's mouth. Nevertheless she did not stop eating from that day forward. They placed her on my breasts and she was only minutes old. The entire operating room was in awe at her beauty and the love that had entered this world on that day.


Alesia was born 7lb 8oz as a perfectly round ball, as a newborn at the hospital she had lines in her thighs because they were so full, her head was so round people would tell me she had the most perfect head they'd ever seen. The day after her birth the nurse that had cleaned her came to visit us in the postpartum unit because she said, " I was looking around for this little girl, because she is just so perfect I had to come see her again and hold her." That was just the beginning of how Alesia showed her love through her affection. I maybe her mother but there are way too many people that have told me that holding my baby was just different, that she just had a light soul, and way too much love and joy to share.

Wherever you are now my angel we miss you greatly, there really are no words to describe how much but we are so very thankful you chose to be ours even for that short time. Our lives were truly blessed by your presence, until one day when we meet again, a million times thank you!!!!
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Monday, May 31, 2010

This will be the start of my first blog, and one in which I never thought I would ever have to write. People have bad days, bad weeks, even a bad month so to say but what my family has had to endure the last month and for the rest of our lives is something no one should ever have to go through.

On Friday April 30th, 2010 my husband and I were so excited to have a romantic weekend to ourselves. We had won a weekend getaway for a luxury hotel in downtown Montreal, and it was our first time leaving our children for two nights. Our Friday evening and Saturday morning was just great but on that very Saturday, May 1st 2010, while my husband and I were enjoying the botanical gardens our 25 month old baby girl went down for a nap and just never woke up. We had left our daughters with our best man and maid of honor, the closest friends, more like family, we have. Our daughter’s heart stopped and she stopped breathing, there were many people who performed CPR, but she was gone. There was nothing anyone could do or did not do, it was just her time.

While my husband and I were trying to decide what movie to see, we got the call no parent should ever get. We ran to find a taxi in the middle of the street, we told the driver it was an emergency and to drive as fast as he could. That taxi ride was the longest ride of our lives; little did we know there was nothing we could do and that she was gone already. We arrived at the hospital and my family was there trying to find my dear Alesia, finally they put us in a waiting room. At this point I am 27 weeks pregnant on top of everything that is happening so everyone was worried about me. I think I was just in udder shock and I just did not want to believe it, I thought we could still save her, my baby could not be gone, but she was and she is.

I guess this is where our journey started for the grieving of our baby and the beginning of this memorial I want to have for the most precious gift I received and lost.
As I held my baby for the last time I remember her legs getting stiff and how they could not wrap around me because there was no life left in her, not a tick in her heart, not a breath out of her mouth, this is when reality hit. I still do not fully grasp how that first week went by and I was calm, but I was. Strange to say the hardest thing in my life happened and I could not take drugs, alcohol nothing that could help (in all reality it would not have helped but hey what would one drink do?)

I will continue with our journey through the 1st week and the funeral etc in another blog soon.
I want the world to know what an incredibly loving, beautiful, happy child we had and I want to share with the world all the memories I can remember and through it all how we are truly coping. For now I started this blog weeping non-stop now I find myself happy that I made it through this much. Thank you to those of you who want to listen to our daughter’s stories, this is all we could ask for now, that she is remembered and will always be a part of us. The day we forget is the day our pain will encompass our entire lives and coping will cease to exist