Wednesday, August 18, 2010

I Cry

It catches up to me at night. I'm tired and worn out from the day. I'm laying still in bed. My mind is idle. That's when it catches me. Thoughts flood in, my heart aches, and tears flow freely.

I cry because I'm sorry for how he suffered. Pain, loneliness, fear, denial, worry.

I cry because I have so many regrets. This one hurts the most. I regret I didn't go to the hospital to visit more, that I didn't hug him more, that I didn't say "I love you" more, that I didn't sit and just BE with him more.

I cry because I'm mad! I want to scream, and grit my teeth, and punch something. I'm mad at Dr. H and scenes of the court hearing play through my head. Listening to this cold man convincing the judge he was a lost cause, at the same time watching Clark get sicker and sicker out of the corner of my eye, until he had to leave the room. I'm mad that Clark never got a chance to have the BMT. I'm mad that the system is so messed up to allow this.

I cry because I'm grateful. Grateful that he's not suffering. Grateful that he has touched so many people and changed their lives for the better. Grateful for his example to me of bravery, patience, faith, graciousness, and acceptance. I'm forever grateful for the donor of Clark's liver and his family, and for the precious year we had because of their priceless gift.

I cry for the past. Our childhood. Our fun times. This past year. I cry for the what if's and what might have been's. I cry because I know it was his time to go. We all exercised enough faith to keep him here, but it was not Heavenly Father's will, and nothing can change that.

I cry for the present. For the pain we all feel at his loss. For the pain so many others feel at the loss of their loved ones. For how near he still is, for now. He was here just two months ago. But soon that will change to half a year, then two years, then a decade. I hate that I'm getting used to my new normal.

I cry for the future. For the anniversary of that decade. I cry because my children will not know him. I cry for the children he never had, yet am grateful that none were left behind. I cry because no matter how hard I try, the memories will fade and blur. I cry because our future is without him here.

. . .
Tonight I cry because
I just. plain. miss him!

I miss his smile and laugh. I miss the smells and sounds in my house. I miss the car rides and meal times. I miss him from childhood. I miss his everything.

And then . . .
I can't cry anymore tonight. My checks dry. Each blink a little longer. I fall asleep in the wet of my pillow.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Super Clark Shirts

Today would have been Clark's 1st birthday. He said he had two birthdays, referring to the date of his liver transplant on Aug 6, 2009. So much has happened since then, only one year ago.

Many people across the country are now sporting the "SC" and a message to Live Super. If you haven't gotten your Super Clark shirt yet, we still have some. You can order through Paypal, mail me a check, or email me for pick up (

I love wearing my shirt and especially love when I get asked by strangers what it means. My favorite part is the back, "LIVE SUPER" although it makes me sad because it was originally designed with "SAVE SUPER CLARK." My mother-in-law hosts a cousin camp every summer and this year their theme was "Live Super." They wore their SC shirts as a group and everywhere they went, people stopped them with questions. The kids were so excited to tell them about Clark. My cousin's little boy, Carter, came up to me on Sunday and said, "When I got my Clark shirt, I wore it for three days."

If you order 4 or more shirts I've been throwing in a few extra because shipping is less. Do not add extra to your cart because you will be charged for it. You can let me know what extra size you want by clicking "Add special instructions to the seller" on the left of the "Review your payment" page, or I will just throw in another of what you already ordered.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Clark's Maple

It has become a tradition in our family to plant a tree on my mom's property for each grandchild that's born. Clark's high school class, the Class of 2003, said that they would like to plant a tree in memory of Clark. We loved the idea and immediately went tree shopping. Clark didn't have a favorite tree that we knew of so we tried to think of another tree that might have some meaning. There was a beautiful Japanese Maple in front of Wing Mortuary in Utah but that species cannot grow in Watertown. We looked into other Maples and decided on a Fall Fiesta Sugar Maple. We were all a little weepy as we broke the ground, then planted the tree by the road. We offered a prayer for the tree, and for Clark's memories, to go on living and beautifying our lives. The tree has already caught the eye of neighbors who comment on it's beauty and how they appreciate it's symbolism. May it grow tall and strong and be a constant reminder to us that just as the tree lives, Clark does also.

Messages Across Heaven

I think that all who participated would agree that the balloon release on Clark's birthday was very meaningful. It gave us something to do to recognize his birthday, but more so for me, the gesture of releasing a balloon with a message to Clark into the heavens was very healing. We sang "Happy Birthday", then all let go together. It was neat to see the sky fill with green balloons and I watched until they were out of sight. As we all looked on together, I overheard Kate tell her kids that when you can't see them anymore, that means that Clark got them. Clark got many heartfelt messages from all over the country today. I know there were balloons released in Washington, Colorado, Las Vegas, St. George, South Dakota, and Lehi to name a few. Our cousin, Eric, who was also Clark boss, climbed a cell tower in Wyoming and released a balloon for Clark from the top of the tower. I've thought about the people who might find our messages scattered across the country, and wish they could only know the story behind our airborne notes. I know that my family will make this a tradition, sending balloon messages to heaven each year on Clark's birthday. Thank you Kate for the idea and for providing the balloons for our Utah release. Thank you too all the others who honored Clark on this day in any way you did, balloons, wearing your Super Clark shirt, thoughts, and prayers. Clark was and is well loved.

Ryan and Becky in Minnesota

At Clark's graveside in Watertown, SD.
I'm sure Hemi misses Clark more than we know.

The Utah release.

St. George, UT release.(If you have pictures you would like to share you can still email them to me and I would love to post them. Thanks!