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What is "Normal" for a parent after the one year mark?  / Tara & Heath carey

What is "Normal" After Five Years?

Normal is having tears waiting behind every smile when you realize someone
important is missing from all the important events in your family's life.
Normal for me is trying to decide what to take to the cemetery for Birthdays
Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Years, Valentine's Day, July 4th and Easter.
Normal is feeling like you know how to act and are more comfortable with a
funeral than a wedding or birthday party…yet feeling a stab of pain in your
heart when you smell the flowers and see the casket.
Normal is feeling like you can't sit another minute without getting up and
screaming, because you just don't like to sit through anything.
Normal is not sleeping very well because a thousand
what if's & why didn't I's go through your head constantly.
Normal is reliving the accident continuously through your eyes and mind,
holding your head to make it go away.
Normal is having the TV on the minute I walk into the house to have noise,
because the silence is deafening.
Normal is staring at every girl who looks like she is Violet & Iris's age. And then
thinking of the age they would be now and not being able to imagine it. Then
wondering why it is even important to imagine it, because it will never happen.
Normal is every happy event in my life always being backed up with sadness
lurking close behind, because of the hole in my heart.
Normal is telling the story of your children's death as if it were an everyday,
commonplace activity, and then seeing the horror in someone's eyes at how
awful it sounds. And yet realizing it has become a part of my "normal".
Normal is each year coming up with the difficult task of how to honor your
children's memory and their birthdays and survive these days. And trying to find
the balloon or flag that fit's the occasion. Happy Birthday? Not really.
Normal is my heart warming and yet sinking at the sight of something special
Violet & Iris loved. Thinking how they would love it, but how they are not here to enjoy it.
Normal is having some people afraid to mention my Violet & Iris.
Normal is making sure that others remember them.
Normal is after the funeral is over everyone else goes on with their lives,
but we continue to grieve our loss forever.
Normal is weeks, months, and years after the initial shock, the grieving gets worse, not better.
Normal is not listening to people compare anything in their life to this loss, unless they too have
lost a child. NOTHING. Even if your child is in the remotest part of the earth away from
you - it doesn't compare. Losing a parent is horrible, but having to bury your own child is unnatural.
Normal is taking pills, and trying not to cry all day, because I know my mental health depends on it.
Normal is realizing I do cry everyday.
Normal is disliking jokes about death or funerals.
Bodies being referred to as cadavers when you know they were once someone's loved one.
Normal is being impatient with everything and everyone
but someone stricken with grief over the loss of your child.
Normal is sitting at the computer crying, sharing how you feel with chat buddies who have also lost a child.
Normal is feeling a common bond with friends on the computer in England, Australia, Canada,
the Netherlands and all over the USA but yet never having met any of them face to face.
Normal is a new friendship with another grieving mother,
talking and crying together over our children and our new lives.
Normal is not listening to people make excuses for God. "God may have done this because…"
I love God, I know that Violet & Iris are in heaven, but hearing people trying to think
up excuses as to why two young girls ages 4 & 5 years were taken from this earth is
not appreciated and makes absolutely no sense to this grieving mother.
Normal is being too tired to care if you paid the bills, cleaned the house, did laundry or if there is any food.
Normal is wondering this time whether you are going to say you have two
children or no children, because you will never see this person again and it is
not worth explaining that Violet & Iris are in heaven. And yet when you say you have
no children to avoid that problem, you feel horrible as if you have betrayed those children.
Normal is avoiding McDonald's and Burger King playgrounds because of small,
happy children that break your heart when you see them.
Normal is asking God why he took your children's life instead of yours and asking if there even is a God.
Normal is knowing I will never get over this loss, in a day or a million years.
And last of all, Normal is hiding all the things that have become "normal"
for you to feel, so that everyone around you will think that you are "normal".

"Taylorisms" / Mom (mother)


The Fury
going to ta pizark to ball it up with the ethiopian
pyrotechnics are rad
I'm out like t mac at a wizards game
true dat
holy crizzle
basically beat us into submission
massive amounts of pizza
The Po-Po
Crap, cra-zizzle
Blang Blang
The ethiopian (Kevin)
RAD.... that's rad, super rad!
Get to the chopper .... now....

That's some serious bling
Come on mom, think how they feel
That's right!
(Fingers to eyes - to another person) I'm watching you
Dirk! Pollard! Thanks dad
Mountian Dew should be considered another food group....
Did somebody mention Food?
Constant tapping of his fingers on stuff.. I'm drumming mom...
Nice, that's sweet
The Fury

 nuc ka

Let's make concoctions


a dear friend  / Tony Simmons Jr. (friend & classmate )

Mrs. Burgstahler~ your son Taylor was a class mate of mine at desert mountain my freshman, sophomore, and part of my junior year. but even more than that, i am lucky to say that he was my friend. 
i moved away during our junior year and was unable to attend his services and for that i give you my deepest regret. you raised a good, honest, and trustworthy son and i know he is watching over all of us from heaven. once again id like to send you my condolonces for your loss.
Tony D. Simmons Jr 

remember / Jane (None)
His spirit lives in the people for whom he has touched and that never dies!
For Taylor  / Ellen (we would have been good friends )
I found this memorial website reading some posts on the boards, and was so very touched, inspired and lifted up, almost as if I had known Taylor all my life.  I cannot imagine your pain, but know that Taylor would not want you to suffer his tragic and untimely departure from you, just from reading about him.  I will keep you all in my prayers, that God will lift your sadness and your faith will stay strong.  I thought of how Satan was allowed to tempt Job in the bible, and God allowed the suffering, losing all his children, yet he was blessed beyond any comparsion.  I believe that God will give Taylor his life back in a much better world.  You have sent wonderful messages to people, as we all take for granted when we should not, and be so thankful for what we have.  God bless you for sharing with the world and teaching love.  Maybe Taylor had done Gods work in such a short time, and maybe he uses him to teach us all now.  My sister lost her son and it is the largest void in her life, but her faith in God pulls her through.  His death made no sense, but I know that one day, we will all know and understand God's plan and reunite with those we love.  God Bless you.
The following is a listing of organizations that may be helpful in your time of loss.  / Lori Burgstahler (Mother)

The following is a listing of organizations that may be helpful in your time of loss.

A.L.S. Association*
27001 Agoura Road, Suite 150
Calabasas Hills, CA 91301
(800) 782-4747

Alzheimer's Association*
919 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1000
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 335-8700

American Association of Retired Persons
Grief/Loss Programs
601 E. St.
Washington, DC 20049
(202) 434-2260
(For widowed and bereaved adults.)

American Association of Suicidology
4201 Connecticut Ave., NW
Suite 310
Washington, DC 20049

American Cancer Society*
1599 Clifton Road, NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
(800) ACS-2345

American Foundation for AIDS
733 3rd Ave., 12th Floor
New York, NY 10017
(212) 682-7440 ext. 210

American Heart Association*
Dallas, TX 75231
(800) 527-6941

American Hospice Foundation
1130 Connecticut, NW, Suite 700
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 223-0204

American Kidney Fund*
6110 Executive Blvd., Suite 1010
Rockville, MD 20852
(800) 638-8299

American Liver Foundation
1425 Pomptom Ave.
Cedar Grove, NJ 07009-1000
(800) 233-0179

American Lung Association*
1740 Broadway
New York, NY 10019
(800) LUNG-USA

American SIDS Institute*
2480 Windy Hill Rd. Suite 380
Marietta, GA 30067
(800) 232-SIDS

Association for Death Education  
and Counseling 
342 Main St.
West Hartford, CT 06117-2507
(860) 586-7503

Bereavement Services/RTS
Gunderson Lutheran Medical Center
1910 South Ave.
La Crosse, WI 54601
(608) 791-4747 or
(800) 362-9567 Ext. 4747

Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation*
7910 Woodmont Ave.
Suite 460
Bethesda, MD 20814
(800) 366-2223
(301) 657-8401

Center for Loss in Multiple Birth
(CLIMB) Inc.*
P.O. Box 1064
Palmer, AK 99645
(907) 746-6123
(907) 274-7029

The Compassionate Friends*
PO Box 3696
Oak Brook, IL 60522-3696
(630) 990-1010
(Supports families who have experienced the death of a child)

Concerns of Police Survivors
PO Box 3199
Camdenton, MO 65020
(314) 346-4911

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation*
6931 Arlington Road
Bethesda, MD 20014
(800) 344-4823

In Loving Memory*
1416 Green Run Lane
Reston, VA 20190
(703) 435-0608
(Dedicated to helping parents cope with the loss of their only child or all of their children.)

International THEOS Foundation
322 Blvd. of the Allies
Suite 105
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3510
(412) 471-7770
(international widows and widowers group)

Leukemia Society of America*
2900 Eisenhower Ave., Suite 419
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 960-1100

The Living Bank
Organ and Tissue Donation
Box 6725
Houston, TX 77265
(800) 528-2971

Make-A-Wish Foundation
Of America*
100 Charendon Ave., Suite 2200
Phoenix, AZ 85013
(602) 279-9474  

March of Dimes Birth
Defects Association*
1275 Marnaroneck Ave.
White Plains, NY 10605
(800) 453-3816

Mothers Against Drunk Driving
Victim Assistance Program
511 E John Carpenter Freeway
Suite 700
Irving, TX 75062
(800) GET-MADD

Muscular Dystrophy Association* 3300 E. Sunrise Dr.
Tucson, AZ 85718
(520) 529-2000

National AIDS Fund
1400 "I" St., NW, Suite 1220
Washington, DC 20005-2208
(202) 408-4848

National Catholic Ministry
To the Bereaved
606 Middle Ave.
Elyria, OH 44035
(216) 323-6262

National Donor FamilyCouncil
C/o National Kidney Foundation
30 East 33rd St.
New York, NY 10016
(800) 622-9010
(212) 889-2210
(For Families of those who died and became
Organ and/or tissue donors.)

National Hospice Organization*
1901 N. Moore St., Suite 901
Arlington, VA 22209
(703) 243-5900
(800) 658-8898

Parents of Murdered Children Inc.
100 E. Eighth St., B41
Cincinnati, OH 45202
(513) 721-5683
(888) 818-POMC

Pen-Parents Inc.  
PO Box 8738
Reno, NV 89507
(702) 826-7332
(Support network designed for grieving parents
and grandparents providing a pen-pal type service.)

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Center
1421 E Wayzata Blvd., Suite 30
Wyzata, MN 55391
(612) 473-9372
(Provides support, resources and education
On miscarriage, still birth and infant death.)

Ray of Hope
PO Box 2323
Iowa City, IA 52244
(319) 337-9890
(For survivors of those who died from suicide.)

Salvation Army National
615 Slaters Ln.
PO Box 269
Alexandria, VA 22313
(703) 684-5500

SHARE Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support Inc.
St. Joseph's Health Center
300 1st Capitol Dr.
St. Charles, MO 63001
(800) 821-6891
(314) 947-6164
(For families who have experienced the death
of a baby due to miscarriage, stillbirth, or neonatal death.)

SIDS Alliance*
1314 Bedford Ave., Suite 210
Baltimore, MD 21208
(800) 221-7437
(410) 653-8226

Society of Military Widows
5535 Hempstead Way
Springfield, VA 22151
(703) 750-1342

TBI/Tissue Banks International*
815 Parks Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21201
(800) 756-4824

The Taylor Fund*  
212 Doubletree Drive
Venetia, PA 15367
(412) 841-3043
(480) 365-8322

Tragedy Assistance Program for
Survivors Inc. (TAPS)
PO Box 242032
Anchorage, AK 99524
(907) 272-TAPS
(800) 959-TAPS

United Cerebral Palsy
1660 L St. NW
Suite 700
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 776-04006
(800) USA-5UCP

Wings of Lights Inc.
16845 N. 29th Ave., Ste 1
Phoenix, AZ 85053
(800) 613-8531
(Support and information network for
aircraft accident survivors and others
directly affected by aviation accidents.) 

*Denotes a national charitable organization.

Wed, 9 Feb 2005 20:20:21 PST  / Taylor Burgstahler (Holla! It's me - Blang Blang )

 film festival, coming up soon, and all of you who go to dmhs should enter. im running the show and its gonna be rad. especially my video. a small preview: harry carrey and scaly monsters are prominently featured. and so is robert goulet.
Wed, 16 Feb 2005 19:19:39 PST Sit Diary SkankPlease  / Taylor Burgstahler (Rad - it's me )

Below Taylor is  discussing the problems with the head coach (who is no longer there, much to the relief of the other parents also.) Taylor was told to stand in the middle of a circle and to tell the coach what is on the students minds - "I know you guys have been talking about me, so I want to know what was said.  Taylor, you stand up and tell me."  So, Taylor stood up, and calmly told coach that the team was unhappy with his coaching skills and his seemingly unfair treatment of certain players.  Every single kid on that team came up to me afterward to tell me what had happened and they applauded Taylor's restraint and how mature Taylor handled the situation.  Taylor's demeanor was "amazing" according to the kids.  They were so relieved that 'they' had not been picked, but felt bad that Taylor was being picked, yet totally impressed with the way Taylor handled himself, the coach and the situation.  Once again Taylor proved he was the better person.

finally. no more basketball season. i put up with a lot of crap this year, missed a lot of oppurtunities just to show that im dedicated, and went through a lot of frustration for what was essentially a lost cause. i know im better than what i was allowed to show, and i know that i can be successful in the future regardless of what someone with minimal knowledge says. im glad its over, because as much as i love the sport, this situation was simply depressing, and as much as i respect and like every kid on that team, it was one of the most difficult things ive dealt with. it bites to be blatantly disprespected, especially when its unwarranted. i feel as though i was the more mature individual overall though, despite being a kid at best and being made an example of by adults. there isnt too much else to say here, so ask me if you care, but all i have to say for right now is miiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiami...

Tue, 1 Mar 2005 21:21:14 PST SitDiary Entry  / Taylor Burgstahler (It's me! )
 half day tomorrow. why do schools insist you go to classes for 15 minutes each, get nothing accomplished, and head back home after three hours? im not a big fan, and thats why im not going tomorrow. and because my moms nice. on another note, tonight was the basketball banquet and it was pretty funny to see all of the coaches except ours get ovations...from us. 

i managed to slip a picture of a player from the team (chad, my buddy, who got kicked off back about a month ago for standing up to coach when coach kept screaming at him that chad was a total loser and would go nowhere inlife.... gheesh) into my pocket while he was introducing all of us, and that got a good laugh so im happy. we had a good time, and it was sad to know were all not going to be back next year. im headed to pitt, the seniors are off to college, and a few of the guys wont be playing next year because their just done with the program as  a whole. 

it was fun while it lasted though, and all of the guys on the team are good friends of mine so itll be tough moving this summer and not seeing them again. well, off to bed so g'night
SitDiary Entry from Fri, 11 Mar 2005 22:22:49 PST  / Taylor Burgstahler (ME!)
 seriously, i have managed to screw up yet another relationship. met a rad girl last saturday, hung out all night at as many random places as possible, everything was peachy, had a good time, her friend said she thought it went well etc. unfortanuetly im to much of an idiot for my own good, and hesitated/neglected on calling until tuesday or wednesday...subsequently killing my chances (or so i thought). i did call though, and we talked, text messages and al that fun stuff. so, we were set to hang out saturday, see how things turned out, etc, but, miraculously, i pulled off an impossible feat. i called tonight, left a message cause her phone wasnt on, and got a reply later on. well...the convo went from "yeah thatd be great" to "i have plans...sorry". what the crap. less than like three hours and now im pretty sure nothings gonna happen. well probably hang out again and stuff, but im not sure if theres a mutual feeling there, or if there even is anymore. ugh. well, i suppose everything works itself out in time, and thees a plan for everyone, but im just confused. sorry for the whining though, and im done venting now, so if anyone has any ideas feel free to help, thatd be rad. adios all
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