March 31st 2010 - Day 571. And still the pain. As we wait for updates about Jenna, I can't help but wish I was able to grant wishes. If I were a genie, or a fairy, like Tinkerbell, I could make everything better. I would make the pain and suffering go away for all those who are dealing with life threatening diseases and illness. I would make Jenna better so that she could continue the life she had planned. I would make people nicer to each other. I would make people understand how fragile life is, and that we must never take a second for granted. I would make people understand how important it is to tell the people you love "I love you" whenever you have the chance. I would make parents know that they have been given the most special gift of all, their children, and they must do everything in their power to guide them to grow into responsible and caring adults. I would make people realize that this is not a "me" world" but a "we" world, and we are all responsible to help each other make our way through it. If I could grant wishes, I would make our world full of dreams come true.
But I can't. I can't grant wishes, and I can't change what has happened. I can only ask each of you to say prayers for those who need our support, and to remember, we all have to live in this world together. I know, no- I BELIEVE, that this is what Jacquie would have taught her students. This is what my Jacquie would have wanted her students to know and teach to others. This is what our Jacquie taught us, and what we will pass on others. We WILL make changes by caring and supporting, and loving and BELIEVING.
My Jacquie, again the sun is out but my heart is filled with a darkness that never goes away. I am looking forward to your garden being planted, so that when my heart is sad, I will be able to look out the back door, and see your colors and your life as it should have been. A life filled with color, and brightness,love and new life. I miss you, my sweetheart, so very much. Take care of yourself, and watch over our friends who are fighting for their lives. If anyone can help them, and give them strength and courage, it is you. I love you forever and ever and always, and longer than that. Love, your mom
March 29th 2010 - Since TJ first began this web site, we have used it for many things. At first, it was a way to keep everyone informed about Jacquie's progress. It was a way we could let everyone know how she was doing, because to contact each person individually would have been impossible. It was a way to have Jacquie know that her friends and family were thinking of her, and keeping her in their lives, even when she was far away. Jacquie read the messages and felt so good knowing that she wasn't forgotten just because she was not around like she used to be. After Jacquie was taken from us, it became a way for Torey, TJ and I to keep in touch with all of you. It was a way for us to let you know what we were feeling, how we were doing and what we were thinking about. Being able to write to all of you gave us a chance to share our grief with people who loved Jacquie and missed her. It also gave you a chance to share your feelings and thoughts with us. It made us know we were not alone, Jacquie was not forgotten, and that her foundation would continue to grow to make Jacquie's dream come true. Another important part of this web site is that it has given us a way to reach more people when we need help. Help with the foundation, events or prayers. The hundreds and thousands of you who read this web site have been asked many times to say a extra prayer for someone who needs it. Sometimes we know that person, sometimes we don't. We have people write to us or call and ask to have a loved one or a friend mentioned on Jacquie's web site, knowing how many people visit it. And for each of you that says an extra prayer, we thank you. You give hope and you send courage and strength to help a freind or stranger get through very difficult times. Once again, we are asking for prayers. Our friends, Peter and Cindy, have a wonderful and very special daughter named Jenna. Jenna and her husband Scott, were traveling in Scotland, and there was a terrible accident. Now, Jenna is in the hospital in Edinburough and is fighting for her life. We BELIEVE that Jenna is going to fight her way back. I have talked with Jacquie and asked her to watch over her, and let Jenna know that she will be fine. Jacquie will be her Angel, and stay with her, and give her strength and courage to keep fighting. I hope you will all say a prayer for her, and for her mom and dad. I wish I could change things for them , and make all this go away. But as always, I wish, I wish, I wish, but it doesn't matter, because wishes don't always come true.
My Jacquie, when Aunt Val came over today to tell us about Jenna, we cried. We wanted so badly to be able to make it alright. It reminded us of what we are going through and how much we miss you. We know Jenna will be ok, We wondered why you couldn't have been saved too. It is so hard to know how to go on each day with this hole in our lives and our hearts. My Jacquie, when I sang to you and we taked this morning, I ached to hear you sing with me and talk with me. I needed so much to have you next to me. Every time I hear of other parents dealing with the sickness or death of their child, I think of you. It is like it is happening a ll over again. And another little part of me dies too.
I love you, my Darling Daughter Jacqueline Elisabeth. I look at the sky and I hope you are up in heaven watching over us. Please keep trying to come see me in my dreams, I am waiting for you. When the weather is a little warmer, we will work on your garden, we have new trees and plants to put in for you- the purple lilac bush from Casey and her family, the tulips from Tommy, the pussy willows from Maddie, and many more. You will have a beautiful garden to look down on and know it is all for you. Maybe when I sit out there you will come to visit me. I will be waiting for you, my Jacquie. I will love you forever and ever and always, and longer than that. I love you Jacquie, mom
March 24th 2010 - The sun is out today. After a very rainy and cold day yesterday, the sunshine is good to see. On mornings like this, I wake up and think of all the things I have to get done today, and I wonder if I will find the energy to do them. I know the sun should make me feel better and have more energy, and in a small way, it does. But I can't help but feel cheated because this day, like the past 564 days, will not be shared with Jacquie. And now, with spring and summer coming, I remember how much Jacquie loved the summer- the sunshine, the warm weather, the summer clothes, swimming, the beach, and spending time outdoors with her family and friends. The memories of summers past are wonderful. I remember so many wonderful times when we were all together, thinking that life was so good and we could always be together. And now, I have to wonder how we could have been so wrong. Jacquie's life was an incredible life- filled with people who love and care for her. She should have had so many more summers and days filled with sunshine. Why didn't she?
Our friend at Roswell, his name is Clayton Rutan, has finished his round of chemo. He will have a biopsy to determine if he is back in remission. When he is, they will start to plan for his second bone marrow transplant. Please, please keep him in your prayers, and if you can donate packed cells or platlets for him, as a direct donation, please do. He was doing so well for such a long time, and now, to have this set back is so hard, as we know. We all must continue to find a way to cure these diseases. It is so heartbreaking everytime we hear of another life affected or destroyed by cancer. I think of Jacquie, and all the "Jacquies" who never had a chance to reach their potential, to give something back to the world that would truly make a difference. All the dreams never realized and the wishes that never came true, taken away because of cancer. This is what cancer does, and this is what we must end. Every child born has the right to dream and live to make those dreams come true. We will not stop fighting. We will not give up on Jacquie's dream. We will make the Tinker Ball a success. We will get our 90 or more riders for the Ride For Roswell this year, and raise more money than last year. We will make The Jacuqie Hirsch For ALL Foundation a name that everybody knows. And we BELIEVE we will make Jacquie's dream come ture.
We need all of you to help us, we can't do it alone.
My Jacquie, I wish with all my heart that you were next to me. That, instead of writing this post, we were looking through magazines for this summer's newest fashions. That we were picking out new shoess that you didn't have anything to wear with, so now we sould have to buy you a new outfit to go with them. I wish we were talking about what color highlites you would try this summer in your beautiful hair. I wish we were making plans for the camp at the gym and picking out feild trips you would take the chilldren on. I wish, I wish I wish. I love you my Jacquie and I am trying. Stay with me, visit me in my dreams and show me the way to do better. Smile down on us, whisper in our ears and tell us you miss us too. I will love you forever and ever and always, and longer than that. Love, your mom
March 19th 2010 - I just got home from Roswell. It was so much harder than I thought it would be. I guess I thought, and hoped, the visits back there would somehow be not as painful as time went on. I was wrong. The memories of all the times we drove down there, the very first night she was admitted, and each time after that, cut into my heart like a knife. Each journey down there was a trip to hell. A nightmare that we had to live to save our Jacquie. A way to get to her cure. But the journeys didn't bring us to the end we had hoped and dreamed of. And I feel as though the journeys will never be without the pain. Today, I went down to see our friend. His nickname is Fudd, and he is a wonderful young man. He is a son, and a husband and a father, and so much more. And like Jacquie, he thought after his first transplant, that maybe, just maybe, he would be one of the miricles. And he did well for so long. And then, like Jacquie, out of nowhere, came the news that his leukemia was back. Now, Fudd lies in a hospital bed in Roswell, as Jacquie did, preparing himself to fight the fight all over again. Jess, his wife is afraid. We were afraid too. She is scared, and although she is not alone, her new "normal" life has just been shattered. She will once again have to find the strength and courage to be there,not only for Fudd, but for her children too. As I walked away from his room after our visit, I told myself I would find the courage to go back, to be ther if they need me. I would ask that anyone who can, would go to Roswell and donate blood and platlets for him. If you will be able to, please let me know so I can give you his real name. I remember so well, the happiness that Jacquie felt every time she recieved a unit of blood or platlets that had been directly donated to her. The green tag on the bag remined her she was loved. I would like to be able to do that for Fudd, because there is nothing else I can do for them. My heart is so tired of this.
My Darling Daughter Jacquie, I am so sorry we couldn't help you. We tried so hard, please know that we did everything we could for you. Please try to watch over Fudd, and Kathleen and Evan and Shannon and Owen and Greg and all the others who have become part of our lives and part of our family. Help them be strong, like you were, and help them to find the courage to keep fighting, like you did. I miss you so very very much, and you are forever in my thoughts and in my heart- where you will always be. My TJ, your words were so heartfelt, and it breaks my heart that you have to write them. You must know, that Jacquie loves you very much, and I know she would be at your side at your car shows, our own "Miss Mustang Sally". You are the best of big brothers. My love to both my children, with all my heart and soul, forever and ever and always, and longer than that- your mom
March 18th 2010 - As I pack and get ready to leave for the Cleveland trip today, I can't help but think how much fun Jacquie would have going with all of us. She loved the shows, hanging out with the club and crusing during the summers. I miss her not being able to be a part of that, something she liked so much. This, and a lot of other things that she has to miss out on, and we are missing out on too. Were missing out on time and on memories. We spent 23 years together making memories and smiling and laughing with Jacquie. But all that time was still never enough. I miss her more and more each day and I struggle to let the days turn into nights and the nights turn into another day without her. I don't like sleeping and I don't like getting farther and father away from the last time I saw her, or held her hand or talked to her. It makes me feel like I'm losing more each day, even though we have already lost so much.
Yesterday we got a phone call that one of Jacquie's friends, one of our friends from Roswell was re-admitted. He had been doing so well for such a long a time. But a routine test showed his leukemia had come back to 70%. I remember when Jacquie's came back too. I knew everything that we had already faced, all of the tears we already cried and all of the anger that was already built up was about to get worse, much worse. Each time it comes back, its harder to treat, harder to get into remission, and harder to cure. I remember people telling us all the time that miracles happen, but where was Jacquie's miracle? Where was ours? and where is his? Please say a prayer today for our friend in Roswell who has another tough journey ahead of him, and for everyone else who needs the miracle I selfishly we wish we got. I love you Jax and I miss you.
March 12th 2010 - I wish I could thank all of you who continue to call, text, e-mail, and write on Jacquie's guestbook. I just read some of the postings and I cried. I am so touched by your words and I read them outloud so Jacquie is able to hear how much everyone misses her and still thinks of her. I want her to know that she hasn't been forgotten and she continues to make a difference in so many lives. Please know that even though I don't respond to each one, we are all grateful for every word you say or write. We get our strength from you. I wish I knew who wrote some of the postings, sometimes there is no name, and I wonder if it is a friend, or a new friend not yet met. Whoever you are, thank you. Your support means so much to us, more than words can say.
My Jacquie, I am ready to go to the gym, and I will take you with me. I need you by my side, to keep me standing, so I don't fall and disappoint you. I love you, My Jacquie, forever and ever and always, and longer than that. Love, mom
March 11th 2010 - A sunny day today, surely sent from heaven for all of us, from Jacquie. I know Jacquie is aware of how difficult life still is for us, and she tries to make our days brighter whenever she can. Jacquie smile was the sun, she made the darkest of days brighter. She gave us sunshine, even at night. Jacquie, no matter how bright the sun shines now, there is a darkness that will never go away. Your smile lives in our memories, and I know that you are smiling at us now. I am angry that you are not here, and I can't kiss your cheek when you smile at me. I am sad that all of us have to live on memories from the past instead of the promising memories we were going to make in the future. I wish you could have been with us this past weekend at TJ's car show. You wouldn't have been able to stop smiling. "Miss Mustang Sally", standing next to her big brother, surrounded by all his cars and new business things. I know you could see him, and I know how proud you are of him. I wish you had beeen there, though, because it would have been so perfect- the two of you together again. He had such plans for you in his business, he wanted you by his side to share his dream. You gave him so much support and encouragement, and it's not right that you aren't by his side now. Sometimes I look at him, and I know he is looking for you. You both give your dad and I so much to be proud of and grateful for. I know I have said it many times before, but we love you both so much, you are the greatest gifts in our lives. We have had many ups and downs, but we have never stopped BELIEVING that you and TJ will be our gift to the future. Tomorrow, your dad has to go away for another meet, and TJ will be going to see Rachel. I will be home with you, where I belong. I wish I could stay home always, and never have to leave the house. It is getting harder to be at the gym, and I just want to be with you.
My Jacquie, I miss you, my heart hurts with sorrow. But I will get up tomorrow, and I will go to work. But you will be on my mind, and I will look for you and listen for your whisper in my ear. Tell me you love me, and you miss us. Tell me we can make you proud. Tell me you won't leave me. I will never leave you, and I will love you forever and ever and always, and longer than that. Love, mom
March 7th 2010 - I had planned to write last night, but once again, as I sat down at the desk, the tears began to fall. Yesterday. Another "anniversary". Another day to remember that we wish we didn't. Another number. Another day without Jacquie. A year and a half. A "6th" of the month. A Saturday. 546 days. 78 weeks. And yesterday, another benefit for a cancer victim. This time his number is only 2 and a half. He is only 2 and a half years old and is battling stage four liver cancer. Today, a benefit for a 32 year old her lost her life to breast cancer. How I hate this!!!! Our lives are now filled with donations and baskets and benefits to help with treatments and finding a cure. How can we keep letting this happen? Every time I hear of another story, I re-live the moments we heard the words that destroyed our lives. I wonder how many more will hear those words before we no longer have to say them. I wonder when our govvernment will stop wasting money on wars and killing, and start using the money to find a way to save lives. I want to believe that that will happen someday soon, but just like everything else in my life right now, my beliefs have been sorely tested. I fear I have of losing more people I know and love, grows each time I hear of another cancer victim. I wonder who will be next. I wonder who will care. I wonder why.
Yesterday, as I sang and talked to Jacquie, I begged her for the strength to not go back to be. To help me get up and do something, anything. I begged her to help me find a way to get through another day. And she did. I got out of bed, late, but out. And I went to the gym to work. I talked with the children, some of them Jacquie's students. And I found myself hoping that Jacquie would be next to me all day, because I knew I would need her. And she was. She never left my side.
My Darling, I miss you, it doesn't get easier with time. But I try to look for ways that show me you are with me always, just as I was with you. We have the most special of bonds, the bond between us will never be broken. I will hang onto that, knowing that you will not leave me. My Jacquie, I miss you and love you, forever and ever and always, with all my heart and soul. Our love will never die, it will grow stronger. Love, mom
March 3rd 2010 - My Jacquie, I miss you. Everyday there are so many ways that remind us of how much is missing in our lives. It is constant. The songs on the radio, a movie, an expression, "Tink", a child. It is everywhere. And you are not here to share these moments with us. I know I am sad a lot, but I can't help it- if we did not love you so much, it wouldn't hurt so much. But our love for you can't even begin to be measured, and neither can our pain. I just heard of another young woman being diagnosed with cancer, and my heart broke for what lies ahead for her, her family and friends. And again, I ask "Why"?
My Daughter- remember how much you are missed, how many lives you have made a difference in. Remember how many lives will now be better because of you. Remember that we miss you and love you. Remember that we will always BELIEVE. And remember, we will NEVER forget. I love you with all my heart and soul, and every breath I take, forever and ever and always and longer than that. Love, your mom