Mrs. Vest, this is G from Camp Invention. Your son would like to come home early today to cuddle with you.


His poor, anxious mind is already on tomorrow morning, when I’ll undergo surgery on my colon and have my gall bladder removed. He worries so much. Just like his mother. A trait I wished I would not have passed on.

Mom, I’m not going to die ever, so everything will be fine tomorrow.

Party in my room

My daughter’s logic, never fails. Always bold and stubborn. Also just like her mother. A trait I’m glad I passed on. She’s convinced we can’t die and I’m lying to her when I try to explain everyone dies, eventually.

Mom, when I grow up you really are going to die, aren’t you?

What do you think?

I think you are going to die.

and then from the bed…my son tells her …

Hala, you KNOW everyone dies and that’s just the way of life. You just don’t want to have a normal life.

No, I’m going to live always.

But you can’t!

Yes I can!

And there I sat, the night before my surgery, with my five and seven-year olds arguing about death. And I felt alone, and cold, and miserable at the realities they were dealing with because of my inability to be healthy.


  1. “because of my inability to be healthy”

    I’m sorry you feel like this is your fault. Good luck tomorrow!
    .-= Erika Jurney´s last blog ..What’s this hat? =-.

  2. 🙁 Oh kids just get you right in the heart don’t they? It’s going to be ok and remember to ask us for anything. We are all here for you and them. Thinking of you tomorrow. 🙂

  3. dubpool says:

    Life intervenes, whether we want it to or not. We want to shield our kids from the harsh realities of existence. That said, I am glad your kids have such a brave, honest and powerful role model in their mom (and dad!). Your relationship with your children is a wonderful thing. They will get through this… and so will you.

  4. You’ve got two little spunky kiddos over there. They get that from their mama too. Because spunk = strong-willed…in my dictionary at least.

    xoxo for tomorrow. We’ll be thinking good and hard about you and your speedy recovery. 🙂

  5. Oh, Erin!! My heart hurts for your fear! I’m so sorry you’ve gone thru this and have your surgery ahead of you. Its very scary, especially when we carry our childrens’ lives in our hands. Think of it this way, by submitting to the treatment and pulling yourself to health, you are showing them true, deep courage. Some day, when they are in their middle years, and their bodies need care, they’ll have your bravery to get them through. We can’t give them perfect, easy lives but we can be the momma ducks that lead the baby ducks across the street…

  6. I will keep you in my prayers tomorrow. molly
    .-= molly campbell´s last blog ..THE MAESTRO =-.

  7. Ah ha! Now I know why Denise is so disturbed that RJ is fixated on my death lately-especially today. Sigh. I am sorry. That is the hardest part for me when signing my life (literally) into the docs hands.

    Oh wait, I am supposed to say something cheery. Look at me! I have successfully managed multiple surgeries! So has my mother! (My mom had the diverticulitis one actually, with a resection and umm oh wait cheery! She poops fine now that I sneak fiber into her Crystal Light)

  8. Ok, ignore my stupid tweet question. Surgery tomorrow, with two little ones staring at you and asking questions when you are already nervous I’m sure. You will be in my thoughts and prayers. I’m so sorry you are going through this. Not that it helps, but I’ve had ulcerative colitis for years, and know the frustration of not feeling well. I wish you a speedy recovery and your little tykes will be waiting for you post-surgery…of course, you may not be quite ready for them at their young age. But seriously, you’ll be in my prayers.
    .-= Deb Dobson´s last blog ..A thousand conversations… =-.

  9. Sorry, I was just having a post prep pitty party in my bed … had to get it out

  10. My thoughts are with you and your family as you prepare for tomorrow’s surgery. I hope you have a speedy and comfortable recovery.
    .-= drlori71´s last blog ..Things That Make You Say WTF! =-.

  11. You’ll be in my prayers. And, it’s okay to have to get it out–no need to apologize.

  12. Ah, poop. Moms are supposed to know everything. I’d vote for living forever.

    Last night at church, we had a class on immortality and our beliefs about death. Our consensus “You just don’t know til you get there.” It’s that kind of church.
    .-= Suebob´s last blog ..Oh, how I love the World Cup. And the men who play World Cup. =-.

  13. You are in my prayers. Please do not for one minute blame yourself for your health issues. It’s been a tough road for you lately, but stay strong & determined to beome healthy again. I just finally recovered from 2 major thoracic surgeries after 2 years and I am loving life again & ready to hit the workforce again. Your recovery will be much faster:-) And never apologize for having a pity party the night before you have surgery! You are human and allowed to be fearful! But also remember that you are Polish and Polish women are strong & stubborn! (yes…I’m 50 % Polish!)

  14. divrchk says:

    My grandmother died in December and my mother’s best friend of 53 years died last week. My daughter told me that her teddy bear’s father died as I was tucking her in tonight. I had no words. That was just too messed up and disturbing. 5 and 7 year olds shouldn’t be dealing with death.

  15. Erin: huge hugs to you, you will be in my thoughts. Be brave.

  16. After tomorrow you will become bionic and rizzle dizzle dazzle your death-defying daughter and reassure your practical son that the surgeon did indeed pour some awesomesauce in you and now not only are you incredible, you are HEALTHY.

    Good luck tomorrow! Heal well.

  17. They will not be harmed by this. They are young. You are doing right by them to get better.

    I am so proud of you for getting better. You know I am.
    .-= Rita Arens´s last blog ..When Kids Screw Up =-.

  18. You are going to kick some surgical ass like no one in the history of surgical ass kicking has ever done before! I have absolutely no doubts about it. And your beautiful tribe will rally around you and your little lady and little man will see their mom be the hero that she is for handling the condition we are all born into so nobly… being human…

    I will be thinking of you, vibing, praying, sending all the positivity and healing I can muster your way beautiful mama. All will be absolutely wonderful and pretty soon all of this will be a distant memory and you won’t have to see a damn hospital room again because you faced your health battles head on. MUCH love to you always…

  19. Erin, your kiddos are so great. Discussing (your) life honestly with them is a gift to them, I promise.

    Now, think good healing thoughts. We’re all behind you. You’re in our hearts, and all will go well tomorrow. It’s just the next step to your regaining your health. xox

  20. I think this was a good discussion for them to have, too. A healthy one. Not something they’ll ever require therapy for. 🙂 Does Hallmark make “Have a good colon and gallbladder removal” card? If you haven’t gotten any of those, perhaps I will suggest it to them. Rest up, rest your mind.
    .-= Ellen´s last blog ..A great, big thank you to…Stephanie at NieNie Dialogues =-.

  21. All the very very best to you and your family at this time. Sending a huge number of good vibes your way.

  22. Oh boy those kids love you!! Not surprising since you really are an awesome Mom. It’s obvious….I can just tell. Like little Miss Hala says she will live forever. We are both confident, okay fine, stubborn. Such a delicate topic, though for little ones. As parents sometimes it really sucks to be honest with them when sometimes we just want to lie so they never have to face the realities of life and how hard it can be.
    Also, this whole notion of “inability to be healthy” needs to leave your mind. You are absolutely not to blame for your body and it’s betrayal.
    Now, get better dammit, and fly on out of that hospital in style….on the back of a uniforn, or course!
    .-= Cathy´s last blog ..Eating Whats in Season for Optiumum Quality and Taste =-.

  23. I saw this the other day & had to come back to respond “because of my inability to be healthy” Erin, what you show your kids on a daily basis is strength, drive, compassion and grace. Those lucky children bath daily in the warmth of your love. You role model personal drive, conviction , compassion, humor and humility to them.

    Get well soon Erin & get back to keeping that crew in DC on their toes:)

  24. I tuned in late; I hope the surgery went well and everything came out smoothly. I mean, er, everything took off swimmingly. I mean, er, aw heck, I hope you feel better soon!
    .-= Daisy´s last blog ..A high tech and low tech day =-.

  25. Of course, every child is a precious gift, but you’re kids are just little sweethearts! Or maybe, it’s just the great way you write about them. =)

  26. ohhhhhhh my god this is so beautiful …………………………………………….

  27. I think this is one of the best blog for me because this is really helpful for me. Thanks for sharing this valuable information for free.

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