Thursday, June 24, 2010

News on Katie's Guild & Endowment Blogs

There is news over at the Katie Gerstenberger Endowment blog and Katie's Comforters Guild's blog (the same news in both places).

Seattle Children's Hospital is gearing up for September's Childhood Cancer Awareness month with a group of Guilds that support cancer research. A new group has been formed to prepare for September - you can read about it on either (or both) blogs!
Gregg, David and I are going to visit Camp Goodtimes West soon, and we will help out a bit with the first session. We are going to scatter Katie's ashes in Puget Sound (at camp), in accordance with her specific request (we will do this privately, before any campers arrive). If you are a praying person, I invite you to pray with us.

When we scattered some of Katie's ashes at the family home last August, it was incredibly painful. The horror of the feelings I experienced, after placing that biodegradable box filled with her ashes in the water, sent me back to the funeral home to have them re-package the rest of her ashes. Now, I have some to keep, and we will still be able to scatter most of them according to her wishes. When I write this, it sounds a bit crazy to me, but those of you who have walked this path will know exactly what I mean.

We are dreading this "letting go" of another part of Katie's earthly body - but knowing that it is what she wanted, we will carry out her wishes, and our promise. It's just hard to do. Every time I think of it, my guts lurch. I would deeply appreciate any prayers you might like to pray with us.


Elizabeth said...

Oh, Karen, I have not walked your path but it sounds like your reaction is entirely appropriate. I will most certainly pray that this journey will be meaningful for you in all the right ways and that your sorrow will be eased as you fulfill Katie's desires. Peace and love to you and your family, always --

Robin said...

Oh, sweetie, I do know. We are planning to scatter some ashes in NC next week and in Canada later this summer. And I am still going to be hanging onto some for St. Augustine and Chicago and France. And -- I have decided to have some put into a locket or pendant of some kind, because honestly -- I cannot bear to be completely without him.

When we are at camp in NC, I will be thinking of you at camp as well, performing the same heartbreaking task.

Meg said...

I'm so sorry, I can't even begin to imagine how horrible that experience must be. Katie is with you ALWAYS, and I hope that you will feel peace and strength as you fulfill her wish. I'm thinking of you.


Mary Potts said...

Oh dear Karen. I feel so many emotions as I read this post. First, I see the smile on Katie's face in the photograph - the happiness, the beauty. And then, as I read your words I am amazed at the strength and conviction of a girl so young who made such an adult decision. To be so specific in a request such as this shows a maturity so far beyond her years. And then I can feel your pain in your words, about letting go...Oh God, the letting go... You are so brave Karen, and so true to honor Katie in this most profound way. Nothing you say here is "crazy". I go to the cemetery where Erin is buried, and it's a very beautiful and private place, and I lay in the grass next to her and just feel her there. Perhaps the few that drive by think I'm crazy. So be it.
I am a praying person and I promise I will do so for you.
Much love to you.

Marina said...

I will be praying for you and your family as you walk through this very difficult time.

Daisy said...

Though I'm reading these posts after the fact, my prayers continue to be with you and your dear family.