A sweet friend in our ward recently lost her 4 year old son to brain cancer. I have never talked about this on my blog because I have never felt I had the right words to share. Now I still don't have the right words to share, but they have been in my thoughts so much lately (especially with Atti's birthday yesterday) that I thought I'd share anyway.
We had only been in the ward for 4 months when the Hansen's sweet Atticus was diagnosed with an inoperable tumor on his brain stem in January, and given 1 to 2 years to live. I was completely devastated for them. I think I cried that entire weekend when I found out. I am one of Cindy's visiting teachers, had been in her home a few times, had met Atticus a few times, and felt this was close to home even though I had only known them a short while. As a parent you of course put yourself in their position. How would I handle that. Just the thought has me in tears even now. No parent should ever have to "handle" that. My immediate thoughts turned to my sister who lost her 4 month old baby, Elizabeth, when I was in high school. It was devastating for her and her husband, and I remember over hearing them talk about how unnatural it was for a parent to have to bury their child. It's something you wouldn't wish on your worst enemy. I still remember Atticus and Olivia playing one evening when Cindy and I were at the church preparing for the Christmas party. Atticus would look for Olivia and say "Girl! Come here girl!" It made me laugh, even though I was sick at the time, and pregnant. Sweet Atti went to live with Heavenly Father weeks after Scarlett was born.
I feel pretty helpless/useless when it comes to finding ways to support or comfort them, but they have been such amazing examples of faith and strength to me. I cannot imagine the grief and pain that the Hansen's have experienced and are still going through. Atticus was only on this Earth for a short time, but through his short life he has touched and inspired many many people. He definitely brought a smile to my face every time I chatted with him! Now I am still inspired by him; I hug my children tight and never hold back a kiss. I am so thankful for the opportunity I've had to know this family and be inspired by their unwavering faith. Cindy shared this poem at Atticus' funeral and since then I have tried to spread "goodness and love" to others in Atticus's memory. Atticus was truly a "brave little soul". Read their blog here and if you feel inspired leave a comment. I know they always appreciate kind words.
In November, a group of us ran the Color in Motion 5k as team "Angels for Atticus"! He was learning about artists in preschool and loved Jackson Pollack art the best, which involved splatters of paint! I enjoyed chatting with Cindy during the 5K about how Atticus would have loved this.
Olivia thought we looked so cool with all that powdery color on, so we decided to share some with her :)