Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I've Heard it 3 Times Today, So...

...you get to hear it, too:

This is apparently the time to officially "De-Lurk" the blog!

lurk (lûrk) KEY intr.v. lurked , lurk·ing , lurks
1. To lie in wait, as in ambush.
2. To move furtively; sneak.
3. To exist unobserved or unsuspected: danger lurking around every bend.

Are you a lurker? Do you want to introduce yourself, your reason for lurking, or your blog? Leave a comment, if you wish...but please, as Suz says, BE NICE!

UPDATE: It was fun to meet those of you who introduced yourselves. You are welcome to visit (we're open 24/7)!
I've been known to do a little lurking, myself, while I check out a new blog, but it's fun to know who's here.

Blessings to you.


Smileygirl said...

Ok, it's just me, not a lurker but I just had to share our story. I used to read Katie's Caringbridge site LOOOONG before Karen and I ever met via the blog. Then months later, Karen read a comment I left on another blog which led her to mine where she then left a comment. I clicked on her blog and saw the picture of Karen and Katie and right away remembered Katie's beautiful face from her Caringbridge page. So really I am grateful to Karen's amazing girl Katie for somehow patching us together. And now, here we are living in the same vicinity! God works in strange ways...

Meg said...

I think I may have commented once or twice before, but I'm not sure I ever formally introduced myself...

I've been following your blog for a few months now. My name is Meg and I'm 17 (a senior in high school). I really feel like I've gotten to know Katie and your family through your blog-- she seems like such a wonderful girl and I am so sorry for your loss. I lost a very close friend to leukemia 4 years ago and I'm very active with the childhood cancer cause in her memory.

I don't know where you guys live but I just have to say, I am jealous-- it looks so beautiful and you are lucky to live on the water! Wow! :)

Best wishes to your family! I'll try to comment more often from now on!



Clippy Mat said...

Hi Karen:
tis me clippy mat. did you ever read my explanation after your comment re the meaning of clippy mat?
anyhoo, i'm a semi-lurker but have recently been commenting more on your blog.
I am a fan of your gentle ways and beautiful spirit.

Dawn98k said...

Okay--I feel like I have been outed. I have been lurking for months now. I came across your blog from a friend's caring bridge page--Meredith--a young woman who died from colon cancer at 23. Her cousin and I go to church together. The first time I read your blog and read about Katie, I was hooked. Your openness, rawness, vulnerability, humor and love continue to draw me back regularly. I am a nurse in ICU and deal with death on a regular basis. I still cry all the time when I lose a patient. Have had very close friends lose a child at age seven and walked the end days with them. Had a sister die when I was 12 and she wasn't quite 2 and it completely changed my family--not necessarily in a good way. I am near your age with a son a little older than David. You read some of the same blogs I read (C Jane, Bring the Rain) so I feel like we might have been friends if we lived closer. I live in GA though and have never been to your area of the country. I do not have my own blog--so I lurk on others. I don't know if it is wrong, but I don't usually post (mean or nice comments). Often I will read a blog and think I should send the link to you--you would have something kind and compassionate to say. Well, that's my story. Hope I can keep reading.....

Erin said...

Hi Karen~

I came across your blog via Hannah's Caringbridge site. At first, I silently read and didn't comment, and then I felt like I needed to let you know that I was "here". I wasn't sure if you'd remember me...glad to have reconnected with you. Maybe someday soon we can meet in "person" again!

Many blessings to you~

Anonymous said...

Dear Karen,

I've left a comment or two in the past, but I think I definitely qualify as a regular lurker (I'm your reader from San Luis Obispo, CA). I ran across your blog about 7 months ago via Sherri Morrison's blog and have been a regular follower ever since. I am continually touched by your posts and can feel Katie's spirit so clearly when I visit. Thank you for being so open with your journey through grief. Your blog has been a great souce of comfort to me through my own journey after losing my sister to Leukemia a few months ago.


Jennifer said...

Hi Karen! I do believe you can call me a lurker!

I check your blog every day and found it through Smileygirl's "Live Happy" blog, which I found through Karyn Bosnak's "Pretty in the City" blog.

I am a radio host in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada and love your photos, stories and strength.

I lost my Mom 5 years ago to bone cancer and miss her so much every day. Your postings about Katie help me every day.

Sending you much love and many blessings!

Here's our stations website if you're interested. I have a blog there and am often inspired by you, Smileygirl and Pretty in the City.

Jennifer said...

Ooops! Forgot the web address...it's early....


Anonymous said...

Ah lurking - figured the traffic locater would catch me sooner or later! I have commented on occasion - I found your site through a comment of yours on susan's how can i keep from singing site. I'm a PhD student. I often re-read your posts as I find that the range of material they cover is fascinating - and you have a great taste in links. I don't have my own blog - perhaps someday... Finally returned after the Christmas break and placed my order yesterday for a copy of Everything Belongs!


Busy Bee Suz said...

Hi Friend,
I lurked for a few months....very intimidated by your beautiful writing. I felt that anything I had to say, would be nothing compared to what you had to say and compared to what you are going through. I think you commented on my blog first and opened that door for me!!!
I am so glad you did. I value your comments and reading your blog brings a lot of thought to my days....you are so wonderful!!!

Cassandra said...

I've commented a few times before on your blog, but I guess that still qualifies me as a lurker.

I am not sure how I found your blog, or when, but like everybody else here, I was immediately drawn into your blog by your beautiful writing, and your raw candor in expressing yourself. I am a cancer survivor (just finished treatment 3 months ago) and so much of your family's story resonates with me. (However, I do not mean to imply that my having cancer as an adult and Katie's death are equivalent.)

I really admire how willing you are to face your grief and then to share about it as well. You have a graceful and elegant writing style, and, yes, there are several days when I check your blog repeatedly to see if you've updated. I'm working at home lately--on some writing of my own--and some days I'd rather read about everyone else than focus on my writing.

Thanks for sharing your insightful journey and for sharing Katie with us all. I am very inspired by her.


Maggie said...

Long time reader, definately not a lurker. I too discovered you via caringbridge. Katie's story touched me so deeply. You are a gifted writer Karen and I am moved every time you post. Through your post, I found smileygirl, who I just adore, THANKS!

Becky said...

A teller at my bank (in Ohio) is a survivor with a caring bridge site. She linked me to Meredith's caring bridge site. You left a wonderful comment there, with the link to Katie's Caringbrige site. You are so honest and have a way with words that I am drawn to. I thank you for sharing yourself and your journey.

You then linked me to Smileygirl.

:) Thanks, Karen!!

Mary said...

Hi Karen, I found your blog through smileygirl's blog. I was touched by your writing about your beautiful Katie. I have shed many a tear while reading your posts and said many prayers for your strength! I have 3 children, 11, 8 and 4yrs. I also love to read about David....what a wonderful young man he is (and handsome, too!) You must be so proud! Take care and thanks for letting me "lurk"


catperry said...

I am a lurker-I guess.
I have continued to check in on you, always leave with something gained. I have left only a few messages. Mostly quiet, as it is your space. You share so openly-I admire you for that.
The death of our youngest son last January at age of 17, from cancer too, has bonded me to you and your blog. I started mine many times, can't continue. Someday maybe I will try again. I have read all of Katie's site as well. I feel blessed by your writings and getting to know you and your family. That and Iam not alone with some of the same thoughts, feelings and actions. Knowing the pain, thankful for our childrens lives, and praying for peace to all of us whose children are no longer with us physically.
God Bless

Leslie "Pineapple" Krom said...

Hi Karen,

I don't have a blog of my own, but I frequently read yours and a few others. I met Katie and David at Camp Goodtimes 2007 - I was a counselor in a cabin of girls just a bit older than Katie. I followed your CaringBridge and now your beautiful blog. You are incredibly insightful, and I am thankful I have the opportunity to follow your writing. You have changed the way I view life and those closest to me. This is such a wonderful gift!


Anonymous said...

ok.....I knew that this day would come. I am a lurker.My name in Tina and i live in Va. i have only posted a comment once. the blogg was about the love you have for your husband gregg. i was in awww over the pictures that you posted. You can still see the love that you two share after all these years. I found your blogg via jessica randel's caringbridge page. You left your blogg address and i have been visiting ever since. Your writing is over flowing with raw emotion. Your Katie's spirit has captured my soul and i often think of her and Jessica. I value your honesty. Thank for sharing your family with us.

Anonymous said...

Hi Karen, I've been a long time reader with a close connection... my best friend is Angela M :0). We've been friends since the 6th grade and now our kids are growing up together and the best of friends. Ang and I have supported each other through many of life's ups and downs...they so loved your Katie.

Katie and your family will always have a very special place in my heart.


Stephanie said...

Hi Karen, I lurk and sometimes comment. I came to you through Evan Cousineau's CB site. I really love your vision and faith and your commentaries on life. Even though my daughter is a leukemia survivor, I sometimes hesitate to comment feeling guilty for this title somehow. I remember during one of our hospital stays a large Amish family filed into a private room. There are large communities of Mennonites, Amish and other religious people in the rural areas near Rochester, MN. Their daughter would not survive her heart problems and was very little, maybe just an infant or a toddler. I remember being grateful for Abby's diagnosis as crazy as that is, it offered hope at least. Anyway, God Bless U!

Lakeland Jo said...

Hi there
Just popping in from Clippy's and noticed you are going to start watching Poirot- enjoy. Its great stuff- I have seen all of them. I love Inspector Morse too

Anonymous said...

Hi, Karen,

I was connected to you via a friend, Meredith, and her caringbridge site. I read Katie's story, as you posted a link, and through her beauty was drawn to your blog. Your family is so real, and your writing such a juxtaposition of raw pain, yet daily gratitude and beauty. I love to read your blog. I'm a mother of 4 kids under 8, and your intelligent discussion of faith and living in the present moment of love is such an inspiration to me. I didn't feel "qualified" to respond, but I will now. Thank you for sharing your life...you are an inspiration. Shelly

AnnDeO said...

Hello, I guess I am a lurker, but I feel like such a stranger. I can't remember how I came across your blog, but your writing about grief has given me comfort in a time when it seems there is none. In May my mother was killed in a horrific accident at the site of my parents new home and my father was responsible. It has been a journey, one that is so individual, yet you cling to any words of others that may have some inkling of the bewilderment you feel. You have helped ease the pain of walking in this fog and supporting my father in all his sadness and loss. I live in Utah, I teach at Utah State and am raising two teenaged boys. Thankyou, and I'll comment a little more.

Jennifer said...

Hi Karen,
I've been reading since this summer via a comment you left on Thomas Kline's blog after the death of his sweet wife, Alison. I don't remember what prompted me to click on your name, but I'm so grateful that I did -- as many others have noted, your voice of love, truthfulness, vulnerability and strength is such a source of -- well, so many things, ranging from comfort to direction to challenge to laughter.

I've commented a number of times before, but have been quiet recently. Absorbing your words. I would like to spring back into commenting more frequently, so this is a good "push" to do that.

I have been on an almost-five-year journey of infertility, which, by its nature, stalls and numbs a person in profound ways.

And I've received my fair share of advice/words from people that have ranged from meaningless and mindless to extremely hurtful.

That sting tends to fade when I read YOUR words, though. They have been a true, constant solace to me, no matter what you're writing about. It seems that your loss and the way you are being shaped as a result of it give your words a gravity that leaves others in the dust.

Many people -- and, unfortunately, Christians in particular in my experience -- just don't know what to do with/don't want to face a person who is enduring chronic pain or an ongoing trial, who chooses to face it squarely rather than being in denial as to its effects. They want to slap on a happy ending, they want the triumphant, "victorious" answer. As T.S. Eliot wrote in "Four Quartets," Burnt Norton: "... human kind/Cannot bear very much reality." So the suffering person becomes isolated to an even greater degree. Your writing has been one of the few places where I've felt not so alone, not so "weird," not so "other." Not only that, you have given voice to many of my own struggles and thoughts -- and have encouraged me many times over, too.

So -- thank you for writing truthfully about the reality of pain, loss and suffering. Thank you for inspiring me (and all of us here, I think!) with your call to Love, your strength, your humor, your honesty. It has helped me remember to foster hope, to work in partnership with God in what he's birthing in my life.

It seems strange that an infertile person could find so much in common in this journey with someone who has lost a child ... but I do.

Continued blessings on your journey, Karen. You are beautiful!


Sarah said...

I'm a 19yo college student in WI studying nursing. I follow a few caringbridges and one day found Katie's caringbridge. I've been reading this blog for a few months. I like reading your posts and looking at your pictures! So beautiful!

isabelkhan said...

My name is Isabel. I live in Houston,TX, and I have left a comment once or twice. I came across your blog when someone linked you on their blog. Who knows who they were? I am sure I don't read them anymore, but YOU I have to read every day. I too have a boy and a girl. They are two and four. They too have a Playmobil collection and adore one another. I read every day and rarely leave a comment. I guess I never know what to say, but believe me I am thankful for you.


Anonymous said...


I don't know how I originally came across your blog and Katie's site, but I am glad I did. My own beautiful 13 year old daughter, Caroline Grace, was diagnosed with a brain tumor (GBM) in September 2007 - two weeks after starting 8th grade and after a wonderful, busy summer. She died, just 14 months later, on December 9, 2008. I came across your blog in the fall, sometime after we had to call hospice. Being able to read your blog, and know that you have been able to live and even be happy was a beacon of light for me during a very sad time. Thank you so much.

I continue to read and be inspired.


Erica said...


I must confess, I am a lurker and have been for many, many months. I came across Katie's Caringbridge site while following Meredith R's journey. I have your blog bookmarked and I check it daily. I deal with chronic pain and your open and honest writing has helped me walk proudly through my struggles. I believe God meets us right where we are and walks every step of this journey with us.

Your special gift from God, Karen, is your eloquent writing. It drew me in from the very first time I visited your blog and I am hooked. I feel Katie's spirit alive in your writing and I thank you for sharing so openly your suffering as well as your spiritual healing as you deal with life has handed you.

God Bless you and your beautiful family.


Dawn~^i^Brandon^i^, Jordan, and Seth's mom said...


You know....I really can not remember how I initially came across your site. We are on the same journey, and I am so glad that I met you through "blog-world". I also like the fact that my Brandon is thought of out in Washington (along with my other son Jordan actually being there), and that your Katie is thought of often here on the east coast in Delaware! I am sure that you, like me, love to hear people say her name outloud, and get to know her and her legacy. What a beautiful one it is!

I am so glad to have "met" you!
Have a WONDERFUL day!


MKC said...

I've lurked, I admit it. I found your site from a comment that you left on someone else's blog. I really commend you on your honesty and your grace when writing about Katie and the rest of your family. The playmobile entry broke my heart for David. I remember doing the same thing with the video camera when I lost my Grandma.

I'm also pretty sure that my uncle lives near you because you describe the same things that he does. Small world.

I look forward to reading more and hope that somehow you can feel the support and care being sent your way.

Katrina said...

Oops, busted! I lurk here for a number of reasons... there is such beauty and poetry in how you express your thoughts, and it always leaves me reaching within myself to try to stretch just a little bit closer to your level of grace. I got hooked after following Katie's caringbridge site, and when I pop in here occasionally, I'm always left with something to ponder and apply in my life. And I absolutely adore your photography!
My oldest son was in your SIL Cheri's class the year that Katie was ill, and he would come home daily with updates; Rita's husband and my husband shared an office at the same time, so I would hear a little more from Dale from time to time. (Now, my 2nd son is in Cheri's class this year.) We haven't met in person, but if I ever see you, and recognize you, I'll say hello. Whenever I find myself downtown, I always pause at Katie's bench and say hello to her. Thanks so much for sharing your world with us, helping us through our own grief (my mom, in this case, who passed away about a year before Katie.) And reminding us that this isn't just something that happens to strangers on tv. I hug and appreciate my kids a lot more knowing and being reminded of how fragile life is, something I hadn't really considered before, and it makes me a much better parent than I would be otherwise.

You're phenomenal, btw. ;-)

Sheri said...

I meant to do this and just didn't quite get here in time. I don't remember exactly how we "met". I looked back last week on Joseph's anniversary at the guestbook on his Caringbridge page and you were reading me and writing to me long before I even knew. Sometimes it seems as if you have simply always been there, my somewhat ethereal, ever-present, long-distance friend.

Anna (Jiffy) Davies said...

I was a little late to read this entry, but I know how sketchy lurking is :-) In my real life, I'm a 26-year-old writer/editor who lives in Brooklyn, and like Pineapple (you have to love the camp names!) I met Katie and David also at camp Goodtimes in 2007 (I was a counselor for the campers a few years younger than Katie) Your blog is beautiful, I love the snapshots of family life and the celebration of the every day. Thank you for sharing it with us.

Anonymous said...

I saw a comment you made in the guestbook of a girl named Meredith and clicked on your site because I was intrigued by the heartfelt message you left for her family. Since then, I have regularly "visited" your blog...clearly I fit the definition of a lurker!...

I pray for you and your family often. Sometimes, you pop into my head for no reason at all and I'll say a quick prayer for God to send you His peace. I hope you can somehow feel that...

Thanks for sharing your private pain and difficult journey.