Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Goodbye to The Best Year of My Life

2013.  A year that will live in infamy, no doubt.  And yet I am having a tremendously hard time letting it go.  

Probably because while the worst thing that we could possibly endure happened on August 9th, the best thing that we could possibly hope for happened for the preceding 221 days of the same year.

Our family was complete, and Quinn was our shining star.  

summertime pops on the stoop
so proud of their platter for daddy's father's day gift
Quinn's got the whole world in her hands (aka mommy's sunglasses and Colin's face)
this was an HUGE deal - she hadn't allowed anyone else to hold her in a long time :)
during our Maine trip

I head into 2014 knowing that never will a year in my life be as good as this one was.  Never will I hold Quinn on my left side, her face smooshed into my shoulder, or on my right hip to face out to the world and enjoy the sights and, most of all, the breeze.  Never again will I hear her laugh in person, see her grimace when she didn't get her way, or see her eyes light up with any of us walk into the room.  I won't have the hope of just one more milestone, or one more chance to do x, y or z.

taking it in
clearly something didn't go precisely her way lol
one of my favorites - so in love :)
spreading her love around... this grin was for Reid and Reid alone <3

2013 also brought us - largely by way of Quinn - the most intimate knowledge of goodness I have ever had the pleasure of encountering, which in turn has increased the goodness in us.  The year opened with the unbelievable benefit my family and our friends hosted back in January and continued throughout the year via well-wishes in the mail, on Facebook, comments on the blog.  

The unexpected mentions of others who have thought of Quinn and unprovoked acts of kindness of friends, family and strangers alike.  

The group of women, most of whom I have never and may never meet in person, who banded together and have provided our family with home cooked meals every week since my surgery in September.  Who most recently surprised us by picking up the tab on a Poconos getaway the four of us took for a few days after Christmas.  

The incredible photographs captured by those wonderful photographers.

The goodness of our friends and family helping out with the boys while I am physically down and out, with nary a complaint.

Of course, this year has brought more than its share of bad times.  Too many diagnoses of cancer - mine, my uncle, additional scares with an aunt and the loss of a cousin too soon.  Friends who are learning they may never dig their way out of the debt they incurred, through no fault of their own, because of Hurricane Sandy.  Typhoons, Hurricanes, shootings - much unnecessary heartache and violence.

And of course, the loss of Quinn.  For me, that loss is not something that ends with the passing of December 31st, with some calendar's determination of a new beginning.  It is a loss that will stay with me forever.  But 2013 was the year in which we really had her.  And for that reason, I could never bid it good riddance or be glad to see it go.

So instead of Happy New Year, I bid you all Happy Every Day.

Quinn loved to grab our noses and faces.
There was actually a good month where she would.NOT fall asleep
without her hand squeezing the crap out of my nose lol
first night in her big girl bed!
loving all that space to roll :)


look-a me, so pretty!
so happy on her only birthday


  1. your poor nose! so funny! God bless you Eileen - I love what you wrote about the goodness in others inspiring more goodness in you. Beautiful thoughts from a beautiful woman (even if her nose will never be 100% the same.....)

  2. Oh the memories!! Also wishing you a Happy Every Day!

  3. I have said it before and I will say it again, your strength and determination and pure grace makes me want to be a better person. I do not know what God has in store for you or your family but I believe your tragedies were triumphs for you all, with the help of Quinn , you all changed so many lives.....FOREVER. May God bless you with healing and...... Happy Every Day!

  4. Oh Eileen...this was just beautiful. We are all so lucky to know you and and Quinn and your beautiful family. Thanks for letting us be a little part of it. We love you guys. xoxo ,Chelsea

  5. Beautiful post eileen, you have such a way with words. All our love to you and your family. Happy new year .. We wish you endless blessings. Xxoo s

  6. Beautiful post. Thank you so much for sharing. You continue to inspire me. So does Quinn. Wishing all the best in the months ahead. Happy Every Day!

  7. Such a lovely, beautiful summary of your year, Eileen. Quinn - so many of us never met her, but we will never forget her. Happy Every Day, Linzers. xoxoxo

  8. Thank you for continuing to share your life with the world. I can only imagine how painful that can be at times. Please know that your entire family and not just Quinn has left a footprint on the world.

  9. Happy Every Day - thank you for always sharing a little bit with us. <3

  10. Eileen your strength inspires me everyday. Xoxox- Jillian

  11. Eileen,
    I spent an entire wet and cold afternoon reading your entire blog from start to finish. Your writing took my breath away and I was in tears multiple times. Through your words I feel I really got to know Quinn, and how she fit into your beautiful family. You are an amazing woman, your strength is something we should all strive to have. I will continue to follow your family's story as I feel I need to know you will all be ok. Thank you for sharing Quinn with us all, and my prayers will be with you as your life story moves forward. Much love. OX

  12. Thank you for sharing and letting us know how you are doing. Your strength is truly an inspiration to us all. I hope you are feeling well and all treatments are done. Always thinking of you and your family. XO