Our beautiful daughter Emersyn Paige passed away from SMA Type 1 on April 7th,2009 at the age of 7 months old. This blog is dedicated to her life, legacy and spirit and our journey as a family through grief.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

I Carry You in My Heart ~ E.E. Cummings

I carry you in my heart

I carry it all in my heart.

I am never without it, anywhere I go, my dear,

and whatever is done by me

is your doing , my darling.

I fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet)

I want no world (for beautiful you are my world, my trut...h)

and it is you who are whatever a moon

has always meant and whatever a sun

will always sing - it is you.

Here is the deepest secret nobody knows

(here is the root of the root, and the bud of

the bud, and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;

which grows higher than soul can

hope or mind can hide)

and this is the wonder that is keeping

the stars apart...

I carry your heart

I carry it in my heart.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Don't forget my child........

"Mentioning my child's name may make me cry, not mentioning my child's name will break my heart"..... yes time passes but I miss Emersyn every minute of every day. Hearing her name brings me so much relief and appreciation that someone else is thinking about her too. As Emersyn's mother I ask that you please don't forget my daughter or the difference that she has made in this world.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Back to School

It’s been a while since I have written on Emersyn’s blog and without making tons of excuses as to why I will just say I felt the need to write again. The truth is I feel the need to write everyday but sometimes I just feel too emotionally stuck to put into words how I’m feeling. I also feel guilty taking time away from Isla to write as I want to give her as much of my attention as I can. I also know that in order to do that I need to take time just for Emersyn and so here I am doing just that. There are a lot of factors pushing me to write today. It usually gets to a point where I am doing a bit better for a while at carrying my pain and then more and more days come where I find myself pulled totally inward with grief. I am usually pretty good about expressing how I feel with people I love but then there are days when I don’t want to talk to anyone and I don’t have the words to articulate the pain that sometimes overtakes me. I think there are times when silence and not reaching out can be mistaken for me doing better and some days that is true but right now I am having more days where that is not the case.

Because it has been more than three years since Emersyn died I am starting to become accustomed to times of the year where my grief is particularly intense. Two weeks from now on September 16th Emersyn would have been turning four years old and she would have been starting Junior Kindergarten. I find my grief journey continues to evolve with new layers as Emersyn gets older in my mind and as I realize all of the things she would be missing out on that she would have loved. As a primary teacher the thought of Emersyn going to JK would have been so special for both of us. I know these are milestones that are more parent driven versus what actually really matters in life but I think starting school is a rite of passage and a gift that every child should get to experience.

I can only picture how Emersyn would look now at four years old. I think she would have been tall with dark brown soft curly hair (daddy’s genes) with her big brown eyes and warm genuine smile. I imagine she would have looked so much older but still looked like my baby to me. I imagine she would have wanted to pick out her back pack, lunch box and some kind of important “first day of school outfit” and of course the shoes……. you can’t forget the shoes! I imagine she would have drawn the other kids in with her charm and humour and she would have wanted to please her teacher……I might be being a little biased here but a mom can dream ;) The point is all I can do is dream and I am sad that when I return to work this Tuesday and welcome all of my eager and excited Grade 1 students I can’t help but think of Emersyn standing in the JK line smiling with the classic excitement and anticipation that all kids feel on their first day of school. I picture her waving to us pretending not to be nervous but inside her little heart would be pounding with a mixture of emotions and I imagine as her parents we would have felt the same. I wish my imagination wasn’t so vivid but it’s a story I play in my head and more importantly in my heart as her mother. Some people may think I am torturing myself by going into these details but the truth is they are there any way so I hope bringing them out will help to purge some of this built up angst. As each ‘would have been milestone’ approaches and passes I feel like Jason and I have no choice but to face each one of them and mourn those too. I am learning it is all part of this journey as we are continually educated by our grief. It is an ongoing education.

Another major layer to the way I am feeling is my return to teaching now that my maternity leave with our precious Isla has come to an end. Isla has been my reason for getting up every morning and feeling happiness again. She has brought so much comfort and healing to my heart and I just can’t get enough of my sweet girl! I am continually amazed that my heart has the ability to be broken and filled with so much love and joy at the same time. Again since having Isla this is a new layer in our journey that three years ago I never thought would be possible. Isla is over 14 months old now and I have cherished each and every day that I have had with her. Because of Isla I can taste my food again, I am learning new recipes and regaining my love for cooking, I am now better able to navigate the grocery store and the shopping malls where all I could seem to see after Emersyn died was pregnant women and happy intact families. Because of Isla I am regaining my confidence as a mother. Now I have to buy groceries not just for Jay and I but most importantly for Isla and as a result my heart is lighter going to these places that were once too painful to even think about. Because of Isla I no longer have to look the other way when I pass the park now I can actually go there and watch her laugh and smile as she soars on the swings. It helps that I love my job and our amazing home daycare provider otherwise there is no way I could leave her every day. It helps that Jason is so supportive and such a wonderful dad. It helps that I have great support from my family and friends.

I feel I am struggling with figuring out whether I am going through the normal feelings of sadness in going back to work after a maternity leave versus the feelings of grief where I’m not just a mom but a bereaved one who has trouble leaving my child……period. So combine my return to work, with Emersyn’s birthday and would have been JK year, Isla going off to child care, regular day to day grief and I am having some trouble processing everything at once but I will manage and I know this heaviness will break again. I know this because both of my girls have taught me about the resiliency of the human spirit. So as I begin this new path in my journey as I return to teaching on Tuesday and welcome my eager and excited group of Grade 1 students I will also be saying goodbye to my dear Isla on her first official day of daycare and in my heart I will be waving goodbye to my big girl Emersyn on her first day of JK.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Emersyn's Entourage and the 2012 Rebecca Run for SMA!

Thank-you to everyone who braved the intense rain storm yesterday to come out and show your support for the 2012 Rebecca Run for SMA!! To everyone who registered for Emersyn’s Entourage but could not make it due to the intense weather conditions we totally understand - it was pretty bad out there! We thought the day was going to be cancelled when we arrived due to lightning, thunder and swirling winds -yikes (we were literally holding our tents down so they wouldn’t fly away!)! BUT thankfully Emersyn and her Angel friends were watching over us like they always do and the rain cleared just enough to keep this vitally important event going!

To our family and friends of Emersyn’s Entourage who continue to register and /or sponsor us every year in honour of Emersyn and everyone affected by SMA how can we thank you enough?! Jason and I are able to do these events because of all of you who continue to let us lean on you as we try to figure out this world without Emersyn and find a CURE for SMA. We could not walk down the raceway and see our daughters beautiful face on her 'angel sign' without the loving energy that you all bring and send to us on this very emotional day. It was also an honour and great comfort to spend time with our SMA family and our amazing SMA warriors who inspire us and motivate us to keep going every day. It was also very emotional to walk the raceway for the first time with our sweet Isla in honour of her big sis. 

We had the chance to meet some amazing new SMA warriors this year and of course little Miss Stella the beautiful 2012 Race Honouree sure did capture our hearts! We also want to thank the very hard working Rebecca Run Race Committee and the outstanding team of Volunteers - without all of you this day would not be possible! And a huge thank-you to the incredible Sponsors of this annual event you guys have outdone yourselves once again!

The graceful yet searing and powerful strength of the SMA family and friends community continues to shine through every year. Our new President of FSMAC Susi and her wonderful daughter Holli who has SMA Type 2 also braved the rain as they flew in from BC to meet everyone and take part in the day. It was great to meet you both! And despite the crazy weather in true ‘SMA Community Form’ over $140,000 was raised this year towards a CURE for SMA!! AMAZING!! Without these community driven fundraisers there would be no funding allocated towards a CURE for SMA and that would be a tragedy. SMA has been deemed “one of the most CURABLE diseases” by the NIH.

To everyone who continues to help us find a CURE for SMA and support each other on this journey thank-you is not enough but hopefully knowing you are helping to raise money while providing comfort and HOPE to so many children, adults and families affected by SMA will fill your heart with as much love as it does ours.

Can’t wait to see you all next year and make some more magic!

Due to the rain we were unable to take as many pictures as we normally (sorry if we missed getting your pic we do like to include everyone!) would but feel free to check out this link to view some of the pictures from the day!

Much love, thanks and HOPE to you and your families,


Melanie, Jason, Isla and Angel Emersyn xoxo

"Together we CAN find a CURE for SMA"

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Talking Mommy Out of the Tree by Dedicating One

Emersyn always comes through to us just when we need it most.  I have been feeling pretty down this week and let's just say I think I need to take a break from doing certain online reading for a little while (I don't want to talk about the specifics because I am choosing not to focus on it anymore). So as she always does in the times when we need a little lift, perspective and reassurance that she is with us, our bright and brilliant Emersyn sent us a big "hello"! Thank-you Emersyn for "talking mommy out of the tree" with your wisdom and love even from the beyond.

So here is the story. On Thursday the mail carrier knocked on our door with an unexpected package addressed to "Miss Emersyn Paige Klomp" ( ahhhh.....music to my ears as a bereaved mom - my daughter's name in print and most importantly a loving reminder that she is still touching people's hearts ).  My heavy heart lifted as I opened the large envelope and read the words ~ "This is to certify that a tree has been dedicated at Crinan Woods in Scotland in honour of Emersyn Paige Klomp". Crinan Woods is known as the "Rain forest of Scotland", a truly beautiful place. As many of you know Scotland is a place very near and dear to my heart so this tribute was especially meaningful.

My parents were born and raised in Scotland, all of my "hearty" relatives live there and it's also a place of fond memories as ten years ago Jason and I spent some time visiting my family on our post grad/pre-kids European extravaganza! Since Jay was away in B.C. this week on business, as it happened my very Scottish parents were staying over to keep me company and help out with "wee Isla" as they call her (who is getting to be not so "wee" anymore) when I opened Emersyn's tree dedication and let's just say they were touched just as deeply as we were. Isla thought that it was pretty great too as she started clapping and laughing with her toofy grin when we opened it...she is such a funny girl and honestly so aware of Emersyn's spirit it's unreal. When Jay came home last night he was also totally blown away by this kind and loving tribute to our Emersyn, who Granny and Grandpa always refer to as their "wee fly face" which is in reference to just how smart, sly and fly Emersyn was and still is in her Angel magic.

This dedication has touched us so much and really helped to cheer me up!  The only problem is....... we don't know who to thank?!  This kind and wonderful person did not include their name only a beautiful Scottish Blessing. I totally respect if this special someone would prefer to remain anonymous but we sure would LOVE to thank-you personally for this very well timed and honoured gift for Emersyn! No pressure just trying to 'smoke you out' for some genuine appreciation!

And for everyone else here is a little piece of Crinan Woods...... where there is a tree growing tall and strong in honour of Emersyn and a magical place that we will be travelling to sometime in the future with our little "Island of Hope" ~

"And may the blessings of the rain be on you.... and leave there a shining pool where the blue of Heaven shines, and sometimes a star......".

A sincere thank-you to the special person who conspired with our star Emersyn to honour her, say "hello", and  "talk mommy out of the tree" by dedicating one ,

Love, many thanks and blessings for our Emersyn tree,
Melanie, Jason, Isla and Emersyn xoxoxo

To read more about the beautiful Crinan Woods and the Tree Dedication Program click here

Friday, April 6, 2012

2012 Rebecca Run for SMA - Emersyn's Entourage!

Dear Emersyn’s Entourage!

It’s that time of year again to gather your friends and family together and join us for the 2012 Rebecca Run for SMA. As you all know last year’s Rebecca Run for Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) was another tremendous success with more than $165,000 being raised. The Rebecca Run has now raised more than $2 million for Families of SMA Canada - AMAZING! Emersyn’s Entourage was once again the biggest team with more than 100 registered. To those who attended the run and to those who could not attend but sponsored a runner, walker or roller we extend a huge thank you!

This year’s race is scheduled for Saturday, July 7, 2012 at Fairy Lake in Newmarket, Ontario. The race offers something for everyone: a 1km family walk/run/roll, 3km walk/run/roll or a 5km run/walk/roll beginning at 9 am. All proceeds from the event are donated to Families of SMA Canada. The early bird race fee is $35/person if you register prior to April 30th. To register for the race please visit www.rebeccarun.com.

All registrations received prior to Thursday, June 7th will receive a specialized technical t-shirt with our team name on it. When registering please indicate that you are a part of Emersyn’s Entourage and let us know so we can add your name to our team on her blog. Register early to avoid disappointment as spots fill up FAST!

The 2012 Rebecca Run includes a number of special features including:

• Our 2012 Race Honouree Stella Adele Bartlett, a beautiful little girl who has been diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 2. Please visit http://www.rebeccarun.com/stella.html to read more about this precious little girl and her amazing family!

• “Market Place” will be there again this year where exciting items will be sold with a portion of the proceeds going towards SMA research

• Complimentary barbeque, healthy snacks and refreshments before and after the race will be provided for all participants thanks to our generous event sponsors

• Check out the Rebecca Run Prize Incentive Fundraising Rewards at the following link! http://www.rebeccarun.com/fundraising.html

Our goal for 2012 is to once again register 100 walkers/runners/rollers on Emersyn’s Entourage and to raise as much money for our team as we can in her honour for SMA Research! Please visit Emersyn’s blog www.emersynpaige.blogspot.com for team updates! Everyone who attended last year’s race has shared with us how much they truly enjoyed the day.

SMA is the number one genetic killer of children under the age of two. 1 in 6,000 babies is born with SMA and 1 in 35 people carry this killer gene. SMA is just as common as Cystic Fibrosis but only has a fraction of the awareness. We NEED to change this! The Rebecca Run is a major event to affect change, raise money and awareness for a CURE for SMA.

Jason and I would like to thank everyone for your ongoing love and support in our quest for a CURE since losing our precious daughter Emersyn. This coming Saturday, April 7th, 2012 will mark three years since Emersyn’s life was taken at the age of 7 months from SMA Type 1. Her baby sister Isla who is now 9 months old will never get the chance to meet her big sister and because of SMA we will miss her and forever carry the pain of losing our daughter to this tragic disease. In honour of Emersyn’s 3rd Angel Date and in honour of all of our SMA Angels and Warriors we need your help to raise enough money to CURE SMA sooner than later. We hope to see you at the run!

Wishing you love, remembrance and hope,

Melanie, Jason, Isla and our Angel Emersyn

“Today I'm gonna try and change the world
Gonna take it one day at a time

I've made my resolution

I've opened up my eyes

Today I'm gonna try and change the world”

~ Johnny Reid ~

In honour of our dear daughter Emersyn Paige Klomp who passed away from SMA Type 1 on April 7th 2009, please take a moment to listen to this beautiful song by Johnny Reid titled “ Today I’m Gonna Try and Change the World”.