I’m not the same person I used to be. Before her. Before cancer.
I’ve always been a bit of a worrier. I’m cautious by nature and I can easily fear the worst. But now I am living through the reality of one of my worst fears coming true. I lost a child. I lost my only daughter to cancer.
Two and a half years later my broken heart has healed a little bit. I don’t cry myself to sleep every night. I can smile. I can laugh. I can see all of God’s little miracles throughout her battle and even in her death. And while that might lessen the sting a little bit I am also left with the reality that not only have I lost my girl, I’ve also lost a lot of who I was.
Lately I have been dealing with a lot of anxiety. It’s a constant nervous feeling from deep within like I am just waiting for the other shoe to drop. Life has been going so well that the worrier within me is on high alert for all hell to break loose. It is not a good feeling!
Before cancer my worries were pretty simple. Would Brett get the job? Where would we live? How would we raise our children?
After cancer I have an all consuming fear of losing the rest of my loved ones. I have a fear that our family will ultimately fall apart after holding it all together for so many years.
Where are these fears coming from? They aren’t rooted in any current reality. All I can do is take a deep breath and then fall to my knees in prayer. It has never been by my own strength that I have been able to carry on anyway. It shouldn’t be any different now.
My daughter was truly special. She changed my life forever and now her legacy lives on through this foundation and her family. But she is missed.We miss her every second of every single day no matter how big our smiles are. No matter how joyous the moment is, it’s always in our minds that she should be there too.
Olivia Caldwell Foundation is a 501c3 nonprofit that raises money for pediatric cancer research. You can learn more and donate by visiting www.oliviacaldwellfoundation.org.