We painted the streets of Wauwatosa orange on Sunday. I was so proud to see so much orange on the streets, in the restaurant and on the patio. I was blown away by the turn out! People said they could see the orange from all the way down the street. That made me one proud mama!
It was a little overwhelming at times. I didn’t know if someone smiling at me was being polite or if they knew me. The funeral was different because I just had to stand there and everyone formed a line to introduce themselves. But this time, it was my job to walk up to people and start-up the conversation. I had a few conversations with people, and they had no idea I was Mom. I found myself stumbling over words and feeling really shy. Most of the time I was helping with Jaden or the boys. Which was important too. Doug & my family were the true spokesmen this round.
When I did introduce myself, people gave me “the sad look.” It made me uncomfortable. It didn’t match the way I was feeling. If it had been a different day, I might have been upset if they didn’t look at me with a sad face, but Sunday was a day of celebration. I woke up in high spirits and was looking forward to telling Owen’s story. I wanted the greater Milwaukee area to meet my son. To hear the story of a warrior — my warrior. Perhaps that’s what caused me to retreat into my shell a little bit.
I did meet a few blog followers (which was one of my favorite parts). I am so supported by my virtual friends and to meet them in person was just really neat. I hoped that they could see just how much I appreciated them through my eyes. I sometimes don’t know if my words really express my gratitude …
My friends were rockstars! My family (Medals, Bissings, Sarah & Abby) were amazing – helping me with the kids and working hard. Doug’s aunts (and Tom) were sporting their “Got Orange” shirts they made just for the event. Aunt Kris gave me a pair of earrings. Not only are they orange, but they are buttons! (I was slightly, ok severely obsessed with buttons for my wedding) AND there was an owl stamp on the back of the packaging. Krissy wanted them for herself … but all three signs all pointed that they were supposed to be mine. I wore them all day with pride! Thank you so much Kris!
Our team of orange learning their jobs for the day!
A beautiful painting given to me by a friend’s kid – Issac & Alana. I think Jaden has a super crush on Alana …
Speak of the devil … meet Alana!
Cake Pops were a huge hit! Staying up until 1am on Friday night baking with my girls Erin & Jennie paid off! We went through five cakes, five containers of frosting and 2 lbs of sprinkles!! We made close to 300 cake and s’more pops. Thanks girls for your help with those … I owe you big time!
Owen was on every table. A little burb about who he was and why we were holding a fundraiser was on the right.
Feeding babies — who needs highchairs?
Logan & Mommy
The Schaefers!! Remember these kid-os from our crazy playdate! Love you Marcy!
Angie (room mate from college), Richie (her husband) and two kids. Pierce (on dad’s lap) was born the day after the triplets! Look at all that hair!! Trying to find Parker (older brother) is like a Where’s Waldo puzzle! Can you spot him?
Jaden had an allergic reaction to something … we have no idea what. But the Benadryol knocked him out!
Yep, that’s Jaden sleeping in his car seat under the serving station. And the dollar bill is “for being a good friend” — I think it makes him look like a hobo. Great black mail for the future!
We painted the upstairs dining room orange too!
The night was a success! We raised money for Owen’s Memorial. Doug and I have been talking and think we have a good idea of what we’d like to do. We think you’ll love it …. more details to come! Thank you to everyone who attended! If you were there and have photos of your own, I’d love to see them! Please post them to the Orange for Owen facebook page. If you’re not on facebook, feel free to email them to email@example.com
Thanks again for everyone’s support as we continue to celebrate Owen’s life and the lessons he has taught us all. Thank you for reading my words as I try to sort out my new journey in life. I find strength in blogging/journaling. I find strength that others out there had a chance to get to know my little man, even if it was only through the world wide web. Blessings to you all!
It was our pleasure to be there! (ps, that’s us in the far left hand corner the pic of painting the upstairs orange, with my hubs in the red t-shirt)
I love that I can feel your happiness in this blug. It was a great night, we really enjoyed ourselves for the hour that we were there. You really do have so much to be proud of! Owen was there, you could just feel it. I love the onesie we got, I feel like Tucker is cloaked in the armor of a warrior and being smiled upon by an angel who is a guardian for so many. I love that you share your journey with us.
Happy to see it was a great success. Sad we couldn’t be there, but our Owenge shirts have been ordered. We will wear them with pride and tell Owen’s story.
Mel, I am so happy that this was such a success. I wish I could have been there. I defenitely was thinking about it all day on the 3rd.My family and I always get together that day so I couldn;t make it but u were defenitely on my mind and so was Owen. I am so happy so many people showed up. I couldn;t wait to see th pictures, thank you so much for sharing. Logan and Weston are just adorable. you have the most cutest little triplet boys ever, god blees them all, Poor jaden, sucks he had an allergic reaction. Mel, I hope your new journey in life is as happy as your sound in your writing. Always thinking of you.
So happy to see you smiling and celebrating your little man! It looks like a wonderful success and we will continue to paint the world orange with Owen’s story!!!!!
i am beyond disappointed that plans changed and I could not make this event!! I was so disappointed to not be there and celebrate Owen and see you and your family! I did order and Owenge tshirt and I will be rocking that as so as it comes! You are on my mind often and i hope that you feel the love and joy that you felt on Sunday for many many days to come, especially on days that are tough!
Is there any way to order the t-shirts?
That picture of jake made my day!!! Hope it went extremely well:)
So glad that you had such a great turnout! I wasn’t able to be there, 🙁 but i’m ordering my t shirt! Can’t wait to honor your little warrior! Always thinking of you and your family! God bless you!!!
Colleen and I had a great time! We didn’t know for sure where it was, but as we drove down the street there were the balloons and people in orange-easy to spot! What a special event! Loved seeing your boys, Colleen is basically a baby freak, so she loved it! Looked like you had a good turn- out. A great day for Owen’s legacy!
So happy the fundraiser went well, was their any doubt ? We also feel like we know you, everytime you post a pic and then when you put the little video of jaden proposing to violet ! I told my daughters, it makes me feel like I know you more, I heard her voice . Love and prayers, your virtual friend , sherry
WOW!!! Just started reading the Owen story today and I must say you and your family are amazing! I loved Jaden wanting to watch his brothers sleep to make sure they are okay. What a GREAT big brother! Glad your fundraiser went well. Will think of you whenever I see orange!
I hope as time heals everyday can be a celebration of Owen’s life! I am so excited that the fundraiser went well for you guys! God Bless You:)
I am so happy you had a great time with family and could enjoy the day celebrating your little angel!
Hugs from Omaha, NE!
I hope this reaches you and your able to read this. But my name is Heather. I have been following your story for some time now. Enough with the small talk. I mainly wanted to ask if you would be okay if I done a bike ride or something here in Ky for Owen, And of course IF your interested, we would set the proceeds up to go to the proper place. Rather it be for Owen, for your family, which ever. If your interested in doing so please let me know. I would love to help you paint the world owenge for you! You can e mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope to hear from you soon!!!
I just wanted to say that is awesome Heather what you want to do for this beautiful family. I teared up reading that. Its incredible how many hearts this wonderful family has touched. God bless you as well as the Bissing family. Always on my mind!!
Orange is every where since Owen’s passing. I have especially noticed it in the flowers. The lilies this year are a brilliant orange, and so many people have them in their gardens. I was driving east on the NY State Thruway between Buffalo and Rochester. There were thousands of beautiful orange wild flowers along the side of the road. I have taken this trip many times over the years and this is the first time I have ever seen any flowers along that area. I have seen some magnificent orange sunsets this summer and already several orange butterflies. A lovely orange Baltimore Oriole came to my hummingbird feeder a few weeks ago. In 30 years I have never had one come to my feeder. God is reminding us of His omnipotence, and through His power and grace, He is using this to send His love and comfort to you, Mel (and to your precious family)! I trust that God will continue to reveal moments of joy to you, just as you felt at the Owenge event. God loves you and He knows His plan for you! Plans to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11) Mel, embrace nature’s orange because God is whispering His love to you and through you (and your blog) He is shouting it to the world!
Glad your day went well! I was there in spirit and with prayers for you and your family…all the way from Mississippi! Hey could you post a copy of the cards that were on the tables, the one with Owen’s pic and Blurb? I would like to post it in my Sunday School class, I update them each week.
Hello. I’ve been following your blog and keeping you and your family in my prayers. Last night while tucking my girls (ages 6 and 8) into bed, we said our prayers and I included a prayer for you, the first time I’ve prayed for you out loud with my kids. It was a pretty non-specific prayer something to the effect of “please bless the lady who lost her 6-month old baby”. My girls asked me some questions and I told her you were a friend of someone I know and that lost their baby boy, who was a triplet and told them how he donated his organs to help save the lives of other babies. They asked questions like “now will they be called twins?” and “do the two other babies notice their brother is gone?” etc. Then the most interesting thing happened: I told them to pick out their outfits for church the next day (we always have their clothes ready to go to help keep us on schedule in the morning) and both girls simultaneously pulled out orange sundresses! I had not told them about Owen’s name or wearing orange– I was so surprised by this! Strage coincidence maybe but I believe it was a little message from Owen. I told my girls about wearing orange and that his name was Owen, they were so proud to have picked Owen’s color and Owen has now touched their lives if only in a small way. They will include him in their prayers too I’m sure. We wish you all the best and will support you from afar.
edit on last post: my girls are ages 6 and 8, not sure about the smiley-face! I also have 2 boys (ages 2 and 11 months). I am thankful every day that I am able to enjoy my children. Thank you for your honesty and sharing your thoughts and raw emotions and helping me keep perspective on what is important in life. I believe in the power of prayer and hope you feel lifted up by the prayers of your friends and family (and also complete strangers who feel a connection with you).
Every sentence in this post gave me chill bumps and tears. I am still following your blog and I am so glad as “strangers”, we can help you during all of this. I hope you’re feeling a bit better day by day. Such an inspiration. You really are.