Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Sending Up A Spiritual Flare

A work of art, in progress: the Pablove mural on the Sunset Boulevard wall of Dangerbird HQ. Peter surprised the hell out of us with this massive memorial to Pablo. DB designer Rory Wilson created it; he also designed the Pablove logo, which Pablo loved.


We have one out of town guest left in our house—Paul Massa, the mayor of New Orleans. Actually, he's staying next door at James + Vanessa's house, but he only sleeps there. J + V gave us their house the day Pablo passed, and went to stay at a friend's house. They wanted us to have more room for friends and family to stay. An act of selflessness in the hour of our greatest need. Amazing how big their hearts are. Amazing how big the hearts of so so so many countless friends are.

Tomorrow morning, Paul leaves. I am freaking out. I don't want anyone to leave. Pablo left. Our little boy Pablo left 10 days ago. Our little boy Pablo left on June 27. June was last month. June is not this month. That is a change, a shift, a new thing since he left. This is enough change in our lives. I want everything to slow down. I want everyone to stay put.
This is so so much more difficult than we ever thought it would be. The pain comes in big glassy sheets and it smashes at our feet and we can't move for fear—it always comes with fear—of shearing our feet. The emptiness is debilitating. The emptiness and the fear and the pain are like sleeping underwater. I always felt that way sleeping with Pablo at CHLA. Never able to actually sleep, I always came up for air, worried about the beeps and bings of the machines, always waking up to monitor the rise and fall of Pablo's chest. I always thought of that as sleeping underwater. And now I realize it was a prime foreshadowing of this new era.

I don't want anyone else to leave us. I know you have lives. But I want everyone to stay right where they are when it comes to the Pablog and our electronic ultramodern relationship. So there's no more change in our world. Not for a while. I promise I will keep writing. Always intended to. And I won't always be freaking out like I am now. I want to keep this going, to continue the spirit and the soul of Pablo. I have a need to communicate what's going on with Jo Ann and Grady and I. Our experience. Our journey. I will write about the positive stuff too. When it happens, when it comes, I will write it.

This plea may be without merit. You never said you were leaving. But Paul leaving means that you might leave. And if you leave, and we lose this connection and your feedback through blog comments and emails and text messages and Facebook messages, the pain is going to get deeper and hotter and more intense. You can see why we don't want to be in more pain, or lose our community connection. It has become a very, very strong lifeline for us. It's what community is about.


Tonight, our house is quiet. For the first time in exactly two weeks, our house is quiet. At this time two weeks ago, Pablo had played all afternoon, and was asleep in our bed, in his usual place between us. At this time two weeks ago, we thought Pablo would live forever. We never spoke about it, but I know that Jo Ann and I put a huge emphasis on Pablo making it to his sixth birthday. That was two days before two weeks ago today.
Two days after he was running and running and running in the park with his friends celebrating his birthday, he was at the beginning of the end of his life. There was no run-up, no warning. We were in the midst of life. Pablo coughed. And then....

Elliott Smith wrote a song called 'Everything Means Nothing To Me.' Have no capacity to remember or care what the song is about. I am only concerned with pirating the title to describe our condition in the Castelaz / Thrailkill / Gallagher family. Pablo, he meant everything to us. And he has gone away. Nothing means anything to any of us without Pablo. Our hearts are broken. Worse, our hearts are useless. We walk upstairs in the morning and fling ourselves into the eighth, ninth, tenth day since Pablo's passing, and we have no idea why. Why are we here? What are we flinging toward? Where is our little boy and his wondrous symphony of noises and words and gestures and aims and desires? Where? In a flash he was gone. I keep thinking of things I want to say to him, one last time. I keep wanting to hold his hand, one last time. I keep wanting to feel him in my arms, too tired to walk, one last time. We all feel this way. Can you blame us?


Grady noted that just walking in the front door, our house is completely different. He noted that he missed knowing that Pablo would be right inside the door waiting to see who was coming in. Or right in the TV room, 'watching something,' as he liked to say, almost as an apology for loving TV. Or chasing up his big brother to, as he always stated in the simplest, basest term, 'play.' I can tell you, Pablo didn't care what Grady might play with him. He just wanted to play with him.


And I can tell you, we miss Pablo and we are in the glassy, frozen, vacuous, immense marsh of grief. I could never accurately or completely describe it to you. This is just me shooting off a spiritual flare.

102 comments:

Puanani said...

This little family that lives in a foothill town, this little family that spent time with Pablo at the ocean, this little family that loves Pablo and his mommy and daddy and brother are not going anywhere. We think of you everyday...

Bryan Erwin said...

We're here. Know that and take advantage of that.

love,

bryan and natalie

Samantha said...

I wish there was some way I could take on your pain, just to give you a moments peace, at least... I wish there was something I could say to make your heart a little less heavy... but there isn't... there are no words that mean enough to erase any of the pain and sorrow you feel... Please know that I think of your family and your dear, sweet Pablo every single day, constantly. His absence is felt everywhere... I am sending love to you all...

Anonymous said...

Your family's and Pablo's strength insprire me... Please never stop posting... I think about your family every day... You are all in my prayers.

Luka said...

I wish I could do more than just post on a blog but I will absolutely not leave you

jhaygood said...

we're here. we're not going anywhere. ANYTHING you need that we can give.

Anonymous said...

i check every day -- ok, several times a day :) -- i'm not going anywhere. pablo is in my heart every minute of every day. you, jo ann, grady, polly, all of you are in my heart every minute of every day.

so much light and love and prayers...
jenn

Jen said...

I only came to know of you guys through Acaica, but I'm here for the long hall. It's funny but I find something deeply connecting when reading about your family even though I've never met any of you.

I actually had a dream about Pablo last night. I was walking down a hallway and a door opened up and there was a young boy standing there with (this is the really weird part) ET. They were both smiling and laughing at me, and I didn't say anything but just kept thinking, 'That's Pablo!' Right after my head made that connection, I woke up.

I hope you don't mind me posting about that dream, but I'm glad I shared it with you.

Light and love to you guys.

Scott Henriksen said...

Not going anywhere.

Tiwanna said...

I have wanted to comment since Pablo's passing but after my initial comments on that day, I have been at a loss for words. I can't possibly understand what you guys are going through. All I can say is I will continue to read whatever is written on PABLOg! about whatever. Through this blog I found a wonderful little boy with a thirst for life, love and happiness that was endless, and a family who adore him immensely. Thank you & please continue on.

stacy said...

Don't forget that we need you, too - it goes both ways. We're not leaving, you're not leaving, and thanks to you we have all come together to create an infinite pool of love and strength for everyone to draw from.

All my love to you beautiful wise souls Jeff, Jo Ann & Grady.

Anonymous said...

Still here....not going anywhere. Think about Pablo, you, my kids a good part of the day and I am just one of thousands. Fling yourself forward each day, we all find strength in you.

Your buddy,

Jesse

Anonymous said...

I don't think anything that I could say would take away any of your pain, even though I wish they would.

But I don't think any of us who read PABLOg will leave you. We're here for you.

Much love <3

Tracy said...

Always and forever. There are more than 10,000 reasons why we will always be here and that is that we all share something: friendship, love, laughter, tears, music and most importantly Pablo. You both brought that little light into this world and it will NEVER go out. I wish I could sleep at your house every night. I do.

Cassiel talks about him 3 times a day at the least. And will always do so.

We are attached at the hearts
xoxoxo
Tracy & team Blum...

beth said...

your hearts are there for each other

Anonymous said...

I'm not going anywhere. You will find meaning. I know you will. It's horrible and unfair that you have to search so very hard, but you'll do it. My heart breaks for you. I'm so sorry.

Kristen said...

You and Pablo have forever touched the lives of my two boys as I have become a more grateful and thankful mom. A big cyber-hug to you. We are here..

Elizabeth said...

We are here. Not all of us know you or knew Pablo, but we do a bit now and we are here.

We are here.

Helen Stickler said...

That is an awesome mural. Hang in there ... I'll come stay over any time, and make you guys french toast in the morning. xoxo H

Anonymous said...

I'm here, too. I think of Pablo 30 times a day and when I wake in the night. I saved the paper we got at the memorial and put it in the journal I keep for my daughter. She remembers Pablo well and one day when she's reading my books to her kids, she'll be able to tell them about him and how he was "such a boy". I included your link so she can see for herself how special you all are.

When you feel the emptiness of any physical space, close your eyes and breathe deeply and feel the love. No one has gone anywhere.

Elisabeth

Anonymous said...

I am so glad you sent out your flare. We see you. We hear you. And while I can not feel the depths of grief that you are feeling, I can empathize and cry and be touched by Pablo's story and by the continuing journey that you and Jo Ann and Grady have been thrown into because you articulate it so artfully. I want to ask YOU not to leave because you have a gift and I am grateful to you for sharing it. Pablo's story has touched me more deeply than I thought possible.

Love and strength to you and your family.
L

number17cherrytreelane said...

I can't even imagine how you are dealing, feeling and staying coherent. It makes no sense and isn't fair.
I am thinking of you.

My love,
Rachel

Peter Rauh said...

J, J, & G: ...nope, not leaving - I think about your lives alot and especially when I'm in the midst of our lives (me, K & J).

I would even come and stay in your house if you'd like, put my feet up and make peeps watch sports on tv - whatever it takes.

love - Peter (& Karen & Julian)

Neil said...

...Have thought about Pablo and your family every day since the celebration at Descanso Gardens (and certainly for months before as I followed the Pablog). Reading your post today once again brought tears to my eyes. I've been inspired by yours (and Pablo's) strength and love, and appreciate your sharing all of your moments, emotions and feelings. My family's love to yours...

est1980 said...

i'm not going anywhere brother!

Anonymous said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for continuing to post. You are all still in our prayers - Pablo too. Now more than ever. Really.

blessings and love -
a Waldorf family

Charlotte said...

We are right here.
PLEASE KEEP BLOGGING!!!
We need it as much as you do. We need to know that you need us. We need to feel needed. The mural is beautiful. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE.

xo
c

Hungry Child said...

Jeff...I need you to know that I have followed your blog off and on during the whole time. Sometimes it became too much for me, because of where I am. I have a 2 year old son that I adopted, and ever since the finalization, I live in mortal fear of losing him, every moment of every day...it's been a dibilitating fear that I have not been successful at getting out from underneath. It was off and on all through the fight...until "the cough" happened. Since then, I check in about every two hours...its very personal. You don't know me...I just went to school with Chip Adams, and I live in Texas. I have never seen you or your family in person, but the day that Pablo passed I wept out loud in the arms of my husband...I didn't sleep for a moment that night. I sat up reading Pablog until my son woke up, then I made him breakfast, and hugged him until he ran away from me. I feel like I need you as much as you need us. I never want to feel what you are feeling...but, you have helped me to live. I am a better wife and mother, because of your family, specifically. You have inspired me to live...for real. I won't spend my moments living in mortal fear, when I don't have to. You had to...my part of honoring Pablo and your family is to not allow fear to dictate my life...I wont allow it to drain me of every drop of life and joy, because I'm pissed that Pablo's gone, and I'm pissed that you have to feel what you are feeling, and I'll be damned if I let it rob me of one more moment. What I'm saying is that there is a profound human thread between you and so many people. So, you don't know me, but, here's a flare back to you...don't leave us, either...there is a purpose for this. There is joy already growing out of nothingness...like little blades of green healthy grass in Chernoble. It's coming for you, too...it just may take a little longer. We're here, and I for one, am not going anywhere...I hang on your every post for goodness sake. I hope you can feel it...

Aleisha

Kat said...

Never never never never never never will I, or any of us, leave you.

<3

hollywoodhousewife said...

When we told Teddy about Pablo he said: "Pablo was my friend and he STILL IS my friend." And as long as you are still writing, we will still be reading...

liza velarde said...

You guys are not alone. So many of us love your whole family. That continues now... and it will keep going. Yes, life goes on. But it is changed and life is somehow less and a little empty. Losing P changed everything for some many. I have not taken off my Pablove bracelet and every time I grind up that hill or take another stroke in the ocean or want to stop running, Pablo keeps me going. I think of what he went through for so many months. Watching him feel like crap, watching him play, watching him do whatever while he endured this HUGE challenge. He was a rock star every step of the way. He drives me to do better. He challenges me to go hard or go home. Just like he would have done it! With crazy energy and non-stop fun! Just keep grinding! Like P wants you to do!
xoxo,

Liza

Mary Jane said...

Please continue to express your feelings through the blog. Know that I pray for and think about your family everyday. Peace & blessings,
MJ in Dallas

Jenny said...

it's really some strange part of life that at the beginning and the end we feel both so connected to everyone and everything, then in between we live these busy full lives, and then we feel the connection again...the most important and sublime part of life is the connection between all of us. your family is never going to be alone...though it may feel quieter right now...your life is full of love and people surrounding you with care and light...a direct response to your candid openness to share your feelings and experiences with everyone who would pay attention...none of us will ever forget, and we all have a greater appreciation of life thanks to you and Pablo...thank you for sharing, and know that you'll always have the connection of those who've been with you through this in so many different ways...who will live their lives just a little more attentively knowing how connected we all are in part because of your choice to share your path with us...thank you, and i pray that you'll be able to accept the quiet of your loss in time...but never feel alone...we'll be here to share in your journey.

Sara said...

Dear Jeff, Jo Ann and Grady,

We think you of everyday and hope and pray for your family. We pray for Pablo too. Please let us know if there is anything we can do for you. I am so deeply sorry for your loss.

We will always be here for you.

Love,
Sara, Nick, Simon and Cheyenne

Anonymous said...

im here and i know pablo is too.

keeping my 3min a day going for p and your family.

stay strong...we aren't going anywhere...

britt

aka: girl that can't give blood at the blood drive so made the bf do it and met jo ann, p and his loose tooth in the chla elevator:)

Victor said...

Jeff, you don't know me. I'm Victor. I've been following the Pablog for 2+ months and I don't want to leave.

When my friends are sharing a grief with me, I've found it eases their pain that I'm listening more than offering advice.

I don't have the right words for you, but I have a shoulder and an ear to lend and I'm not going to stop visiting Pablog any time soon.

Hugs,

Victor Ituarte

Jory said...

I love the Mural photos and thanks for sending up the flare, we're all with you.
Love, Jory

Heather said...

We love you and we are here for the long haul.Make no mistake about that,we are here.



~Sweet Jo Ann,Miss Zoey is ready,willing and able.You say the word and we are there.

Anonymous said...

Hi there Pablo's family,

I didn't know you or your son. In fact I found out about your son through an Ohnotheydidnt (a livejournal community devoted to celebrity gossip) post which posted Shirley Manson's Facebook note.

Needless to say I found this blog and have spent some time at work (woops, naughty me) and at home reading a lot of your entries. Its moved me to understand and feel some of the heartache your family must be feeling. I can only imagine the depths of it all.

What a special boy and what a special family you all are. He's still there, but its a shame his physical body just couldn't take how big his spirit was that it started breaking down.

I normally don't comment on stranger's blogs, particularly ones so touching and personal like this, but your entry prompted me to say that I, and no doubt other anonymous people are reading and feel your family's pain.

I wish all of you much love and white light to help comfort you all through this difficult time. I can only hope that as the moments go on, that the spirit of your son, brother, nephew, friend, etc will provide much strength to keep going when the days are so black and wish your pain would end.

Regards,
Natalie, Melbourne Australia

Sara said...

Oh and BTW, I love the mural! Peter is amazing. I can't wait to see it person and you guys too. Please take care.

Love,
Sara

Meg said...

I'm here. I've thought of Pablo everyday since I started reading this blog. Nothing has changed that for me. I think of you, Jo Ann and Grady so often.

The program from Pablo's memorial is on my nightstand.

I'm here.

Paul S Meyer said...

Dear Jeff, Jo Ann, Grady,

When I first met the members of your family at Pablo's memorial service, I felt and witnessed the incredible love in your family. It was a very powerful experience for me and touched me deeply. I can never forget Pablo, and I want to share with you that all my family back home in Wisconsin send their love, and prayers your way. We are all still with you, and we feel Pablo's light in our lives, reminding us of what is most important in this life. Love.

Anonymous said...

I read this post every morning when I check my other usual website. Don't worry, we'll stay. Some of my friends don't understand why you would love Lance Armstrong the way I do. I told them about Pablo and Livestrong. They were all quiet.

Livestrong.

Anonymous said...

We have two daughters at PWS-- one is in kindergarten, and her birthday is the day before Pablo's. I have been following along and missing the friendship I know our families would have had.
You are not alone. Your pain is our pain. Your grief is our grief. Your loss is our loss. Your joy is our joy.
Believe in the signs--they will guide your way.
With much love to your family through this heartbreak...

Anonymous said...

I read this book a while ago about a little girl that dies. And she looks down on her family in their grief. And, of course, it took a whole lot of time, that girl could only be at peace, once she saw her family in peace. It's incredibly hard but try to have some positive thoughts as well everytime grief strikes you.

we are here.

James said...

Jeff,

I read this and it absolutely crushes me to experience a fragment of the pain you're feeling right now. The fact that you can tear it away, hold it up and finally describe it - well we should all love you for showing us how it's done - but that's another matter. To realize so many children lost to loving parents throughout history, or even yesterday, today, that's what we're reading here. The molecules of that cumulative loss are in every breath we take. You, and Pablo, are pulling those tiny, invisible pieces together and exhaling them with a voice, distilling them back into love, and there is no way many of us readers haven't been changed forever through your experience, your current anguish. Call it a nudge towards the light, call it a breath of pure human essence, goodness, call it what you will. It's another way your little boy's lifeforce remains with us and will live on.

James

Laëtitia said...

i live in france, i've never met you but think ok you all every day. no one can blame the way you feel, every one should admire you and i admire you and i'm far from beeing the only one. Keep sharing, we'll keep taking and send back your love and courage

Laëtitia said...

i live in france, i've never met you but i think of you all every day. No one can blame the way you feel. Every one should admire you, i admire you and i'm not the only one. Keep sharing, we'll keep taking the pain, the freak, the joy when it comes and the infinite love you all have in your hearts.
Pablove is in the air

Anonymous said...

Your family is not alone. Your loss is our loss. Your pain is our pain. Your grief is our grief. We are with you. We are not going anywhere...

We have two daughters at PWS- one in kindergarten, whose birthday is the day before Pablo's. I think about you everyday-I miss the friendship I know our families would have shared. I think about Pablo with every child I see, every cyclist I pass, every butterfly going by...

Believe in the signs--they will guide your way through this difficult road.

Please keep writing. We will be here with you...

Amelie said...

Your words made me cry. I am so so so so sorry. But your hearts are not useless even if it feels like it, they have to be there to carry on Pablo. He was part of you and you are part of him.
Just know that there are people out there who read this and share a tiny, tiny bit of your grief.

Love and light from France, amelie

Jules said...

Ever since I was first pointed to your blog by Erin Adams, I have been hooked. I never met you, JoAnn, Grady or Pablo, but I definitely care for you all. It's amazing the strength that I get from Pablo. Just Monday, my husband and I went cycling and I was really struggling with the heat down here in Austin. James was riding behind me and just said, "Think of Pablo, think of Lance, just push". I looked down at my Pablove bracelet and knew I could finish. I find myself thinking of Pablo often in situations like that - times when I feel like I can't go any farther.

I will never stop reading. As long as you continue to let us into your lives, we will also let you into ours. We have to for Pablo.

I will be in LA next week. Can't wait to see the beautiful mural. May also stop by Forest Lawn or a few of the places you've mentioned often (Malo, Fred 62). Someday we'll run into each other. Until then, I know that Pablo's sprit is everywhere and it makes be a better, stronger person.

stephanie said...

You have no idea how much you have become a part of our lives.
The day Pablo died I could not get him out of my mind, sort of just a nagging feeling. My husband was out of town and took the lap top. All I had left was the kids miserable, ancient computer, each click takes 5 minutes to react. I swore I would never use it.But I couldn't ignore that feeling any longer so I gave in.
The first thing I saw when I went to my blog roll was your post.. Pablo is gone. The time posted read.. 2 mins ago. My daughter heard me sobbing and read... then just sat with me.
We love you guys, even if we've never met you in person. We love Pablo... Always. And we are not going anywhere.

libby @ ninesandquines said...

We are not going anywhere. We are here for you. And you know where Pablo is: right there next to you, in your heart, in your mind, in the butterflies that come to visit, in the wind, the sun and the rain. He is right there with you...and all of us too in our hearts, our minds and our memories...

Nancy said...

I'm still here, not going anywhere. I cannot imagine your pain. I think of you all daily and pray that you will find some peace and comfort in one another.

Anonymous said...

ask and ye shall receive...
love love and more love...
oreck-popes

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I'm one more person that's not going anywhere. I started reading the PABLOg! just a few months after it began. I've never met any of you, but I fell in love with Pablo and you and Jo Ann and Grady. I think about all of you every day. I don't think there will ever be a time that I don't. My love and prayers to you.

Anonymous said...

Hi there, I'm one more person that's not going anywhere. I started reading the PABLOg! just a few months after it started. I never met any of you, but I fell in love with Pablo and you and Jo Ann and Grady. I think about all of you every day. And I don't think that I ever won't. My love and prayers to you.

Anonymous said...

We see the light of your spiritual flare. And when our lives seem the least bit dark, we know that your light in a time of utter darkness is inspiring. I dream about a kid i never knew. I grieve for a family i have never met. and it reminds me, in the most awesome way, that though it 'modern times' we can forget it, we don't live in a vacuum. i am forever grateful for the compassion for the human race in general that pablo's struggle and your words and experience have awoken in me. I am not going anywhere.

Les Popoviches said...

55 people have already commented on your post already... NO ONE IS GOING ANYWHERE! PROMISE!

I still religiously check Pablog a few times a day to see how you are all doing, and because I am still very much thinking of sweet little Pablo, Grady, Jo Ann and of course, you Jeff. I see him in little earthly miracles almost every day (and ALWAYS when I eat ice cream, hmmm...)

You need something, you ask!

Love & Light forever & always,
The Popoviches

Anonymous said...

Nope, not going anywhere!!

Best,

Angela in MKE

ang said...

Sending more love and prayers than these words could ever do justice.

Anonymous said...

As you can see, there are so many of us that aren't going anywhere. We need you as much as you need us. I check this blog more times than I care to admit (especially to my IT dept. at work). I feel this need to know that you are going to be o.k. Every butterfly, every morning dove, every beautiful memory is Pablo. I may not live in LA but from NOLA there is so much love and light shooting your way. Look for the shooting stars, that will be us.

Debbie

Anonymous said...

Jeff, Jo Ann, Grady!
We are all right here!
In grief.
With you.
Luka is back from Wisconsin, he made a memorial for Pablo which we would like to come and give you pictures of some evening.

Lots and lots and lots of Pab-love and huge hugs to you all

Line

LYNN said...

I am not going anywhere...I think of you all every single day...your community will always be here for you.
I send all my love

Anonymous said...

Your family's story gives us all hope in all things good. It is inspiring and humbling and I hope you keep telling your story and changing people's lives for the better. God bless you all.

Anonymous said...

Every ounce of energy and love that we directed towards Pablo since his diagnosis is now focused on you. Where just two weeks ago we visualised the all clear for Pablo, now our intentions are for peace and healing for you, JoAnn and Grady.


Emma x

Nora said...

You all have my heart every day. xo Nora

Anonymous said...

you guys can come and spend the night anytime.

xxk

Anonymous said...

tears are streaming as I started to read your post...I will finish it later as the raw pain you are experiencing is one I am too feeling, missing my little boy who left us 9 and 1/2 years ago. The pain will never go away, its always at the surface ready to explode...no one understands for their life continues on when yours has been changed, destroyed forever. You will learn to exist, you will learn to live but you will be different, the old you will never exist again. Think of Pablo often, speak his name even more often. I will keep you in my prayers and know Pablo is with you, just look for the signs.

Tish Hearne said...

We're right by your side, along with so many others who love you, JoAnn and Grady. I know your pain. I feel it immensely when I read your posts.

Things will get better; we're praying our hearts out that they do. I will talk to Thomas and today will be a better day.

God bless you always as we walk together on this new journey of life.

Tish & family

Tish Hearne said...

We're right by your side, along with so many others who love you, JoAnn and Grady. I know your pain. I feel it immensely when I read your posts.

Things will get better; we're praying our hearts out that they do. I will talk to Thomas and today will be a better day.

God bless you always as we walk together on this new journey of life.

Tish & family

Nora said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
katie said...

We're here we're here we're here. I think about Pablo constantly. I keep the program from the memorial with me so I can look at his photos all day long. And I think of you, JoAnn and Grady all the time too. My grandfather used to shrug his shoulders sometimes and say "keep on keeping on". What else can you do? Just keep on keeping on Jeff and know that you are deeply loved and never alone. I'm so damn sorry. So damn sorry. Hang in there sweetheart. Hang on.

JT Griffith said...

I see your flare! And I check the blog multiple times a day.

--JT

Anonymous said...

Hello, I am just another stranger of many, who has been so moved by your journey with Pablo. You are a beautiful, loving family, and you share your emotions and experiences so eloquently. I can feel how much you love Pablo, and I know he feels that still. I am not going anywhere, either. I will continue to read this blog. Pablo will never be forgotten. There are many readers out there just like me who are moved by your story and think you are doing so much by putting it out there. I wish I could ease your pain. Please keep writing. We will all embrace what you write, and please know we are sending love, prayers, and thoughts to you and Pablo every day.

Dawn: said...

We talked about Pablo and all of you in class last night- your courage and your willingness to be present and vulnerable in this grief. All of us are trying to learn how to do what your family has been demonstrating so profoundly over the past year. I read this Mary Oliver quotation this morning:

"To live in this world, you must be able to do three things: to love what is mortal; to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it; and, when the time comes to let it go, to let it go”

I don't know how to do that but every day I learn more about it from you and Jo Ann and Grady. I so wish you didn't have to teach us.

Not a day goes by that I don't think of you all and send my love and energy to you. Not going anywhere.

Anonymous said...

I'll always be sending love and light to your home.

Jenefer

Anonymous said...

Jeff, Jo Anna, Grady
We are all here and will remain!
here with you
in despair along with you
sadness beyond words
tears, weeping

Luka is just back
he made a memorial fro Pablo in Wisconsin
We would like to give you the pictures of it
Maybe we can come by one evening?

Lots and lots and lots of Pab-Love and enormous hugs


Line

Rachel said...

I am a fairly new reader, started reading just a day or two before Pablo left this life. As I read your post I remembered that the Lord Jesus Christ said, "I will never leave you, nor forsake you". Although at times you may feel lonely, He will be there, ready to provide whatever it is you may need.

Haley said...

I will read for as long as you write. You keep Pablo's spirit alive in all of us by continuing to write. You will mourn forever, you lost someone so precious. I don't think the pain ever goes away, it just becomes a part of you. Your days will brighten again...

Kerry Zeka said...

Sigh...I can exhale now because I worried that maybe you would not be up for writing or think this wonderful amazing blog would no longer be needed! But I am so relieved to read you will continue. I still need it...we all still need it. It remains our own little connection to Pablo that we will continue to crave for, well, forever! Thank you, Jeff, for your strength, honesty, and ability to share Pablo's story with all who read your words! I will continue to read as long as you continue to write! You are a strong voice in the advocacy of pediatric cancer. You are invaluable!!! Thank you!!!

Kerry and Sicily Zeka
Fellow Wilm's Warriors!

Anonymous said...

I've never met any of you, yet I feel such a strong connection. That's how powerful and moving your words are. Not going anywhere. As long as you write, we will come.
Keep seding those flares, we are here for you, Jo Ann and Grady.
The mural is beautiful. Pablo will live on forever in all of you, and in all of us because of your generosity in sharing his story. May God bless the Castelaz/Thrailkill/Gallagher families & give you all strength.

Dana said...

Not leaving. Still praying, lifting all of you up.
Dana J
www.caringbridge.org/visit/emy

miss becky said...

well, this is serious pain. to say that i know what you are feeling makes it seem small. there is a huge hole and nothing can fill it. AT THIS TIME. that big hole will be there for a time, and you know this. when the person i loved the deepest left me i walked around asking myself "where is he now?". he was a farmer, and the land that he farmed was still there, with his tractors, the herd, the barn where he went every morning of his life to milk the cows ~ it was still standing. the house was there. his car. his daughters, his wife. all there.
you have it right. there are no answers to the questions that are before us when someone we love transitions to the spiritual realm. the questions and the pain remain long after they go. i have no advice for you. it has all been said before. we will still be here no matter what. we aren't leaving and we will read what you have to write. just try to occupy yourself with something which will honor Pablo's life. do what you think he would want you to do and just try to busy your hands. i guess that is my advice. busy your hands. you and your family have become a part of me and my life and i am all the better for it. a mimi farena song keeps playing in my mind ~
"Well, if somehow you could pack up your sorrows,
And give them all to me.
You would lose them, I know how to use them,
Give them all to me."
it is my hope that you will soon find a small bit of peace. i pray for you and Joanne and Grady.

Anonymous said...

Think of all of you all the time - sending our love & peace to you xo A, P, B & T

Anonymous said...

praying and sending you love and peace. i think of you all and dear pablo daily...
love,
kristin

Anonymous said...

ARMS AND HEART WIDE OPEN HERE! You can't get rid of me either! There is the give and take, the ebb and flow, the yearning to know everyone is going to be okay. We all have your back on this and in your profound writing, you have ours. Jeff, when I had my one and only child (single mom here) and things got overwhelming, I remember asking my mother "when does this all get easier?" and she told me "It's never gets easier, it just gets different". Inch by inch, it will get different and I so wish I could give you another hug or handhold with him....just one more time....I would, I would. XO, Cindi

Shawn Vezinaw said...

Your spiritual flare has been seen, and we are all here and wish we could do more and anything to take your pain away. You won't lose me.
Stay strong!!
Shawn

Shawn Vezinaw said...

Your spiritual flare has been seen and we are here and not going anywhere. We all wish we could take the pain away and do more.
Stay strong!

christina said...

i walk past dangerbird everyday on my way to work (we live on lucile & i work at KCET) and i've been watching the progress of the memorial.

i wasn't reading blogs for a while & that's how patty & i found out about pablo's passing. every morning when i walk by, i think of pablo and his amazing family...

you don't know me {although you know patty from way back when...} but we're here. and i have faith that pablo is here, in a different form, contributing his beautiful spirit and energy to that life force, guiding us all...

sending love,
christina + patty

Anonymous said...

Going nowhere. In fact, you're going to get sick of me. loving Pablo.

Eliz H

Dolly Duplantier said...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful words and for helping me put things in perspective. I wish I could be there with you. I can only imagine the depth of your pain. I think of you and Pablo every day and will be there for you in any way that I can. Sending lots of love and support from Chicago.

jeanney said...

we will be visiting and talking to you about pablo and things big and small. you all are in our hearts and minds.
pabloveoneanother is a message for all time and we will be tuning in for as long as you want to write.

xo
the kim family.

Heather said...

This is my first post to you and your wonderful family, and I feel it is the perfect time. I found your family through Zoey Needham's blog and have been keeping a prayerful watch over you ever since. Please know that my family and I are keeping you and your precious angel Pablo in our daily thoughts and prayers. We will continue to watch your blog and keep you all on our minds. I am a teacher in San Diego and today we released our butterflies we have watched through their life cycle. I could not help but smile thinking of Pablo as those butterflies flew towards the light of the sun. He will always be with you and thanks to your prolific words, he will be with those of us who did not have the great pleasure of meeting him in person, but knew him through your words. Love and light to all of you now and always!

Anonymous said...

I am here.

You don't know me, but I have been here for a long time; although, I've never said anything until now.

I know you've been told 94+ times already, but I feel that *I* need you to know that I am here. That we are here.

I think about Pablo every day. I think about you and Jo Ann and Grady and Polly and everyone else every day. As so many people have said before me, you all have become a part of my life, and I know that you always will be.

You and Pablo and your family are constantly in my thoughts. And I am constantly in awe. Of your words, of your love, of your friendship, of your optimism, of your vulnerability, of your faith, of your strength, of everything.

I hope you find strength in knowing that you bring strength to so many of us. A strength that I didn't even know I needed.

I am not going anywhere. And neither is anyone else.

Anonymous said...

we're not going anywhere!

erin brynn said...

we're here. i can't stop thinking about pablo. i keep feeling his presence in other children and i've never met him.

after reading this blog it is impossible to forget pablo or your family.

thank you for sharing your grief with us just as you shared your joy. my mom passed away from cancer when i was 14 (i'm now 21) and i have just not dealt with her sickness and dying at all. I'm so thankful for this blog so that i could see what other people did and bring myself back to that place. your honesty has helped me immensely.

Anonymous said...

I have been through a very traumatic experience in my life, and when close friends have had traumatic experiences too, they have asked me what was the hardest part and how do they get through it. Of course every person's experience is different but I tell them, "The hardest part is watching everyone move forward, call less, go about their daily lives, as you feel stranded and frozen in time, without the same fill to move on." But the good thing is that eventually you do move forward, because that is what life is about, has always been about. Moving on, experiencing the new. Make new friends, making new family. There's too much happening in life to stop moving, as hard as it may be. In a way it is inevitable, and it happens in your own time.
Your friends are there for you. Strangers like me are there for you. You may feel alone at times but there are so may eyes on you, hearts beating with yours, good thoughts surrounding all of us. Peace be with you.

chad said...

I'm here and won't be going anywhere

MKPatrick said...

We've been out of town without internet access for just a couple of days. I felt so far away. I'm back to the Pablog now, and always. Pablo, you and your whole family is forever connected to us. Always.
Love & Light, MK, MK, L & A

Anonymous said...

i only met pablo once, but his story of courage has touched me beyond i ever imagined. i see his sweet smile everywhere and there's not one single day that goes by that i havne't thought about pablo and your family numerous times. sending you so much love . . . pablo will live in our hearts forever and ever.
leily

Tracy Marcellino said...

Just re-read this post and it broke my heart. Then I saw that there were 101 responses and I felt better. Brian and I are the "knock on our door anytime day or night if you need us kind of peeps" and of course we offer that to you. Seeing this reminds me that most people are those kinds of people. Jeff, we're here. It seems we're everywhere. A big chunk of all of our hearts are tied to you right now... breathless, paused, loving you all, wanting to hold you up, and thinking of you all the time.