auntie L here

My beloved niece has asked me to speak on her behalf. Sitting next to her in Chicago as she painstakingly “wrote” her last post, LIFE AND DEATH, was truly a humbling experience. She has been using a voice recognition program for some time, and that post took her 3 hours to complete. I offered numerous times to type for her, but the writing process is a deeply personal experience.

So I sat next to her, tears flowing, bearing witness to her compelling message.

And now, Terri has a new message…

In the end, our Warrior settled into a new “home” at the incredibly loving Weiss Hospice and Palliative Care Unit at Middlesex Hospital. The pure grace, compassion and comfort provided by the staff and volunteers in this exceptional place are truly like no other. Positive energy abounds.

Amidst the inevitable pain and discomfort of Terri’s disease…

The rehab we landed in after our miraculous Angel Med Flight was only to be a stepping stone for Terri. Team Terri (as we now call ourselves) was destined to take an incredibly frustrating journey from Mystic to Weiss. Suffice it to say, our medical system is infuriatingly inept at managing the “in between” transition from life to death. But I’ll save that dissertation for another day.

After much soul searching, our Warrior chose to move into a space of comfort and love, combined with the best quality of life attainable, in order to embrace and cherish those she loves in her time remaining.

So many things have happened since we moved here a little over a week ago. Within the incredibly heart wrenching emotions of this difficult journey with our beloved Warrior, the pure love is almost indescribable…

Like the moment I walked into miss M’s classroom to volunteer on her mother’s behalf and her face lit up with a kaleidoscope of emotions.

Or the tears of love and loss her hubby and I shared as we looked ahead at how to carry on Terri’s legacy of love for her daughter.

A 66th birthday celebration for grandpa form Terri’s room, officiated by none other than miss M.

A steady stream of her dearest, closest family and friends, surrounding Terri with light and love accompanied by deeply intimate exchanges.

A Thanksgiving overflowing with gratitude, love, family, music, beauty and sorrow within this end of life journey with our beloved Terri Luanna.

Terri told me that night she felt she was moving closer to dying…

She described it as feeling like she imagines dementia might feel, and she said I needed to tell all of you about it.

I asked her what she wanted you to know and she said, “Tell them it isn’t scary…”

She says it’s also a bit confusing and very “busy”. Lots of images, people, dreams and a sort of veil of uncertainty between realty and “something other”. Especially while she is sleeping. Which she is doing a lot of these days.She wondered out loud if she’s “seeing” so much because she’s lived and traveled to so many places and if folks who live in the same place all their lives have a different experience…

She is also having lots of “visitors”. After a Reiki session she turned to me and asked, “Are Daniels’s parents passed?” I said, “Yes.” And she said, “They were just here.” She told auntie Cole that same day that Nicole’s father had visited her the  night before, inviting her to sit with him on the porch. That is exactly where Nicole spent many cherished moments with her deceased father.

But in the end, it was her bodhisattva daughter, miss M, child of her mother and grandmother, Jeanne, who provided the ultimate gesture of love…

After decorating practically every surface of her mother’s room with her stupendous art work, then preforming dance after dance on Thanksgiving eve (much to her mom and dad’s delight!), miss M lovingly whispered in her mother’s ear while saying good night, “I’m sorry you have to die, Mamae…”

No tears. Just a rare moment of enlightenment we can all take a lesson from.

Terri wants you to know she is surrounded literally and figuratively by all of you who love her. She feels your love, compassion and strength each and every day.

She wants to thank each and every one of you who helped bring her “home”. And she welcomes your continued prayers, positive energy and support in the days ahead…

Love, auntie L and Team Terri


Our miraculous Angel Med Flight


family loving…

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61 Responses

  1. Terri is so lucky to have you for one of her aunts, Laurie. Truly does my sister Mary call you “a mighty goddess of coping.” God bless you.

    Terri, you have always been a perfect daughter. I love you, and will miss you forever. Thank you for making my own life so bright and so joyous.

    • Spider, know that there are more out here also thinking of you and worrying for you and holding you up in our hearts and thoughts than you can ever know, even as we have your daughter. She has been precious to us initially because she is precious to you, and then for her own indomitable spirit – you and Jeanne truly named her well, your Graceful Warrior.

      You have touched so very many whose lives ever meeting most of us, taught us the greatest lessen to live by, that shared joy is increased and shared pain lessened. You are loved and missed, and we grieve with and for you.

    • Lots of love for all of you. Terry, as one mom to another, I want you to know this; she’s going to be fine. I can tell that from here. She’s going to be so loved. She’s going to miss you and grieve, and then go on to be a happy kid, and a happy adult with just a grace note of sadness in her, that will give her empathy and character. She will never forget you and never stop loving you, and she will be fine.

      Spider, if you need anything back on the Wet Coast, please let me know. I’m still “friends” with Jeanne’s Facebook page.

  2. Terri — you are my first thought every morning and off and on all day. I’ve been praying and checking your FB sites multiple times every day– watching for an encouraging post from you or anyone in your family with some good news!!! I so want you to overcome this setback!! You’re such an inspiration to us….your fellow BC survivors!!! We need you and we love you and your blogs!!! xoxoxo

  3. Terri, God bless you on your journey to eternal life. And may God bless all the loving members of Team Terri! My thoughts and prayers are with you all!

  4. Terri, you truly are a graceful warier! You are so blessed to be surrounded by so much love, May God Bless you and bring peace and comfort to you as you go on to your next journey, Love to you and all your family

  5. My prayers and love go out to Terri and her family at this time. She is blessed to have so many who love and care for her. And I know that when the time comes, her mother will be there to welcome her into her loving arms again!

  6. I hope her crossing is peaceful. I hope all her family finds healing in the wake of her passing through the veil. I wish the gods to go with her and hold her hand, and I wish flowers and butterflies and all things beautiful, and the loved ones who have visited her, be there to greet her when she arrives. I wish I’d known her in life but nonetheless I feel blessed to read what she “wrote”, here.

    Blessings to one and all. Blessed be.

  7. Ohh Terri…tears are streaming down my face as I write this… To be soo courageous and strong with an attitude of not only love and strength but the gift of letting us all in on your journey and narrating it soo well. I am sending you all my love and blessings for your transition and my heart if filled with love and admiration for your husband and darling Miss M. as they also feel, grieve and transition to a different life too. May your days be filled with love, grace and peace xoxo Nicole

  8. Tell her that her words have made my heart grow larger…that I am saddened by the sorrow that her loss will leave,but filled with joy knowing that Jeanne is waiting for her with open arms.

  9. Heartbreaking. I survived cancer and in many ways I hate the fact that it is a disease that allows random loss and allows random survivors. I suffer terribly from survivors guilt, losing, as I have, several friends to the disase. My heart goes out to Spider and his family and I can’t express how much I want a miracle, how I’d like, for once, to see a survivor. All my hopes….

  10. I honour you Terri – beautiful grace filled warrior. Thank you for sharing your incredible journey with us. I am in total awe of your strength and courage. Sending you and your loved ones so much peace, love and light as you travel this road together.
    Laurene ☆ ♡

  11. Terri, you and your family have been on my mind daily. I thank God you are surrounded by so much love to bring you home, where there will be no more suffering and your mom will be there to embrace her precious daughter. There is no doubt in my mind you will be Miss M’s guardian angel. God Bless you…Much love Cindy

  12. safe passage dear terri, you will be missed. thank you for your gift, and for telling us ‘it isn’t scary’, we all will be where you are one day. we can approach it with the same serenity and wonder that you are. gentle hugs for you and all your family.

  13. IM sending my love, hugs, prayers, and good blessings your way. Miss M is an apple that doesn’t fall very far from her mother’s beautiful and plentiful tree. Terri, you are the whole package- courage, strength, wisdom, beauty, love, leadership, creativity, and fearlessness. You are a warrior I would go to battle and back with any day or night, in this life or the next. You are an inspiration. Peace and love, Melissa

  14. Thank you for keeping us updated and sharing Terri’s experience as she moves toward the light. May God bless you all and hold you in his loving hands during this time.

  15. Terry, forever when I hear the word gracious I will think of you. Thank you for sharing your courageous journey Much Love, a friend from Vancouver. Suzanne

  16. Terri, please go gently into that good night.
    To all her family and friends I have admired so much the courage and compassion you have shown her and each other through this blog.

    and Spider, not for the first time, your words have made me cry.

  17. You have fought long, and hard, and gracefully, and have won all of the battles set before you. You’ve made a difference – a world richer for your presence, and one that will mourn your absence. You’ve left a family to mourn but to be stronger for what you could give them, and you’ve left hundreds – maybe thousands – of people who will find facing their own times a bit less scary, because you’ve helped blaze the trail for them.

    You’ll know when it’s time to go – to rest.

    I don’t know what comes next, but I’ve long felt that “Heaven” isn’t for everyone – not eternal bliss and rest. For some, death is a time to rest, to grow strong, to digest the lessons that have been learned. And then, when they see a new chance, a new place where they can make a difference, only then do they dive back in, not unlike the belief in the bodhisattva.

    Whatever comes next, step there knowing that you’ve loved, and been loved, and the universe will always be a bit brighter for having had Terri in it.

  18. Terri, you are indeed a graceful, generous warrior. Thank you for sharing so much of your journey with us. I don’t know when I’ve been so touched by someone I have never met. Praying for love and peace to you and your loved ones.

  19. Dear Terri – For what it’s worth I really do believe that you are heading into something like the Starmind, and that your mother will be there waiting for you. (And maybe even the rest of us – the whole story! – if it turns out to be “outside of time”.) Your life has been a beautiful work of art. You should be proud of it. And your beautiful little daughter will carry your light into the future, as will everyone who has ever been blessed to know you. Don’t worry about the living ones. We will all be okay. We will hurt (sometimes beautifully), but that’s just a part of being alive. Soon you will never have to hurt anymore. And you have earned your wings. So you can go ahead and start getting excited now. Because this next part is going to be AWESOME. <3

  20. Sending my prayer out into the universe that you and yours have a joyous holiday filled with more wonderful memories than sad ones for your divine little Miss M. Sending hugs and good energy your way. God bless.

  21. Your journey has certainly enlightened me as to what is important, what is not. You have shown so much courage and strength – and I am saddened by this news. May God have mercy on you and your family…and may they all carry on with the strength that you have shown them. Your family certainly is blessed in so many ways having you in their lives. I wish you all peace and love …and the determination to carry on with the fondest memories you all have shared…

  22. Light ur love light shine,Terri God bless your courageous and brave being..my thoughts of you will be held close..xo

  23. I wish you the journey you seek most. I wish you peace and love. I wish you an absence of pain.

    I wish your family peace and continued love.

    Thank you for sharing your journey, your battle with us, for showing us how to be warriors.

  24. There are no words to describe the comfort I feel reading this, to know that Terri is already walking in the next world. A few days before my mother passed, whenever she closed her eyes, her limbs moved as if she were walking in another place, and she was having conversations with whoever was there on that side with her. Yet when we spoke to her, her eyes would open and she would be right there with us, responding to us lucidly. That was the night my sister and I said goodbye, knowing it was only a matter of time. Terri is surrounded not only by all in this world who love her, but by those in the next plane helping her, welcoming her, enveloping her in their love. God bless all of Team Terri, and you especially, Auntie L.

  25. Thank you Laurie for telling me about this site. I want Terri to know she has the most precious daughter who is kind, loving, thoughtful, strong and peaceful. Terri can be reassured that she has given Miss M a strong foundation for life and a love of learning. Be at peace knowing you are a wonderful mother. You are in my thoughts and prayers daily.

    • Deepest gratitude Lynn for your loving gift to Terri, Marisa, Heron and all the children you inspire and love each and every day… auntie L

  26. Sending my love to Terri. Terri, I have followed your journey and thank you for sharing your story with us. You have inspired me and given me hope regarding life and the power of love. You are not alone my friend. May the angels continue to surround you both on earth and in heaven.

  27. What others may scoff at, I have always believed. Your loved ones are always around. I lost my best friend to cancer, I had a visit from here before she passed. She said something only I would understand and she was gone. Everytime I see a glass too close to the edge of a table I will push it back. That was her thing in life, not mine. I do it now and I know it’s her.

  28. Sending love and prayers for Terri and family. Godspeed on this next part of your journey, and strength to those staying behind for now.

  29. My sister died of Stage 4 cancer just 3 months ago. She was 35 and followed your blog closely. Her last week is similar as you describe. Lots of love and peace beyond anyone’s understanding. She took comfort knowing our Heavenly Father Jesus Christ was waiting for her. I am not sure if you believe in God or not, but all you have to do is ask for him to let you in. It takes a minute in a quick prayer to him for an eternity in heaven. I pray for a miraculous recovery for you and I am thinking about you daily.

  30. From the depth of my heart & soul, thank you, Terri Luanna, for how you’ve lived, loved & showed us all how to impact the world in the spirit of a Graceful Woman Warrior. Knowing you, & all of Team Terri, is one of the greatest blessings of my life.

  31. I hope that the love that is surrounding you carries with you into this next stage of life! Know that there are people thinking about you and sending love to you and your family! You are a brave, brave woman! Blessings to you all!!

  32. I met you years ago. My name is Tony and Im a friend of Tanya. You must have been in Nashville visiting one week Anyway you with Tanya came to hear my family and myself sing at our little church on a Sunday afternoon in my little home town of Gallatin Tn. I remember you being so pleasant. I never forgot meeting you. I have been reading your page ever since Tanya told me about it. Thank you for sharing such a personal journey. You are truly a warrior and woman of great courage Terri.


  33. Peace and eternal LOVE to you and your family Graceful Warrior. Suzy and I will always cherish time spent with you.
    I make better pancakes because of you on the visit last summer. Know you are loved and touched peoples lives in the best ways imaginable. I am forever humble.

  34. Terri, I feel so amazingly lucky to have known you in this life. You are beautiful inside and out. your posts have inspired me in so many ways, your were sent to earth with a message for us and a beautiful legacy for your daughter, who will be in such loving hands in your absence.
    I know for sure your mum will be waiting for you as you journey on with arms open wide.
    You have touched my heart in a thousand ways, I love you and wish you such happiness, your beautiful soul will alight whom ever it touches upon. You shall be so missed but never ever forgotten.

  35. Terri,

    I know we have never met, but I have followed your struggle via your and your father’s blogs and online website. I do pray that you are given a miracle that lets you have many more good years here in this life with your family. In many ways you remind me of my grandmother who passed on just this last month. She was a fighter too, and beat back her cancer for almost an extra decade. If the miracle doesn’t come, please know that you will be in the good company of another warrior who has gone to rest. May your journey, whether in this life or the next, be filled with love and joy.

    Take care,

  36. Aunt Laurie and Auntie Cole and you Terri, are just amazing and inspiring women who I have been blessed to know and call friends. May you be surrounded by peace and love always.

  37. Terri,
    My heart is breaking, but I know you’re surrounded by great love. Keep on reporting from wherever you are.
    Love, Elizabeth

  38. Goodnight, sweet lady, may hosts of angels sing thee to thy rest….

    ….and watch that first step, it’s a doozy!

    Catch you on the flip side.

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