Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Sunday, October 2, 2011
This past weekend Nicole and I had to go to a function by the park next to the duck pond in Temecula. As soon as I heard that it was going to be there I panicked a little bit. One of my favorite memories of Travis happened on the last day I was there.
The last time I went there was one of my favorite days of being a dad. It was George Washington's Birthday, Friday, February 11 and we had no school. (Nicole had to work) So Travis, Addison and I had the day to ourselves.
On this day we didn't have anything planned, but just to spend it together. We woke up and hung out on be like we did many times. We finally got up and left the house. We went to Babies R Us and did some shopping. On the way out we ran into Terrell Davis (NFL Superstar) and had Travis take a picture with him. I thought it would be so cool to tell Travis stories about Terrell when he got older, but never got the chance.
I then remember going to Daphne's Greek Cafe and sharing lunch with my boy. The manager took care of us and was so nice to us. He gave us a side of rice for Travis on the house, just because Travis gave him his trademark smile. Travis was so much fun during lunch just eating up his rice and some of my gyro pita. Travis was enjoying standing up in the booth and smiling at all the people. Travis had the ability to make people smile. His smile was infectious and even grumpy people would look at him and smile. He had a gift.
After lunch, I packed both kids in the car and that is when I got the phone call that changed our lives forever. It was the phone call from the surgeon's office scheduling his surgery. They gave us some options on the dates, Thursday February 17th or sometime in March. We chose the earlier date, because we were told that he needed the surgery and the sooner the better. I remember Nicole telling me that it was less than a week away and us both freaking out.
After getting off the phone with Nicole and having the surgery date set, I decided to take Travis and Addie over to the duck pond. We have taken him there before and he loved to look at the ducks. He was so observant and never wanted to miss a thing. I fed the ducks so they would come close to him and he loved it so much. As we were walking to the van, I saw this big park with beautiful green grass and thought it would be a perfect picture opportunity. It is adjacent to the duck pond and is just really a nice area. I put Travis in the middle of the field and snapped up some pics. We then spent a little time playing in the park and then took off home.
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
We have been receiving Travis' medical bills for all of the stays and procedures he had at Rady's (including all of his surgeries, heath catheterizations, and his lengthy stays). The insurance carrier sends us a statement to show us what everything costs and what they pay for. Prior to his death we were constantly receiving bills addressed to "the parents of Travis Gary DiCarlo". Now, we receive them addressed to the estate of Travis Gary DiCarlo. It is ridiculous that we have to receive these......I mean the "estate of"....I suppose there is just no proper way to address the death of a 16 month old. It is just too terrible to imagine.
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Yesterday we saw a spiritual medium. Below is a smidgen of our experience. If this is not something you personally agree with, please keep it to yourself . I went in skeptical and went out a believer!!!!
So much more was said. We have it all on tape. He also contacted Roger’s grandmother, Deb’s birth father and her old dog, and my paternal grandpa. We ended with a meditation and goodbyes. I asked if we could do it again and he suggested Roger and I go in for a private reading. I am going to!!! I was skeptical before but I am sold. It was amazing and I feel some peace knowing that Travis can hear me and he is around. I just miss him so much! I am so happy he is happy and with my dad.
"Make yourself familiar with the angels, and behold them frequently in spirit; for without being seen, they are present with you." -Saint Francis de Sales
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Sunday, June 19, 2011
I can't breathe.
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Saturday, June 11, 2011
Sunday, May 22, 2011
Friday, May 13, 2011
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
I pulled out a few books from your room to read to Addie tonight. I read her Brown Bear.
"Brown bear, brown bear, what do you see?
I see a red bird looking at me.
Red bird, red bird, what do you see?
I see a yellow bird looking at me."
The top of that book still has your little bite marks. As I read, I couldn't help but picture you listening so intently and then turning the pages at the right times. Some nights you were anxious and tried to turn them too quickly. Just before you left us, you were learning how to make some of the animal sounds. You thought it was so funny when I "neighed" for the horse and "quacked" for the duck. I would give ANYTHING, ANYTHING to read that book with you again. I miss you so much little man. My heart just aches for you. Tomorrow is going to be really hard. I just hope that there is a reason why you were taken.
By the way, I am still waiting for you to come visit me in a dream or send me a sign. Please baby boy...I need it!
Loving you to the heavens and back,
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Friday, May 6, 2011
Monday, May 2, 2011
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Saturday, April 23, 2011
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Saturday, April 16, 2011
With your help, we can reach more families and spread the word that a diagnosis of HLHS is not the end, but just the beginning of a life-changing and rewarding journey.
Our children, both survivors and angels, bring us HOPE for the future of HLHS. Please, share our message so that we may continue to reach out to those in need.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Sunday, April 10, 2011
And I can't wait till then
I can't wait till then"
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
Monday, March 21, 2011
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
What we wanted to do was get away from our thoughts! Unfortunately, it looks like that is impossible. Every activity, every song we hear, every store we go into.....something reminds us that he is gone and never coming back. We've been doing a great job of" acting normal". I hardly ever cry in public (except when the massage lady asks how many kids I have) but my mind is constantly on him. I run through those last few hours before his surgery, my last time rocking him to sleep, how I'll never see his smile again. I stay up late because I can't sleep....my heart hurts too much. Why did He have to take MY boy? Travis was so strong.....we thought he'd beat the odds. I banked all of my hopes and dreams on it. Now they are shattered and I am a mess. I feel like I need to talk but I don't want to talk to anyone. I feel tired but I can't sleep. I feel alone but I have Roger and Addie. I feel angry but also blessed. How are you supposed to come to a new normal with all those crazy emotions? How am I supposed to "get away" from all this? It's a nightmare and I am stuck living it.......
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
From the moment we found out we were expecting our first baby we were thrilled. I have never seen Roger more excited than the day we found out that our first born baby was a boy. He literally jumped up off the couch from excitement. I cried….happy tears. I was happy and my heart was so full watching Roger beaming with pride. We promptly stocked Travis’ room with every sports themed baby item available. I used to joke….”What if he hates sports? What if he wants to act instead?”. Little did we know that we had much bigger things to be concerned about…
When we found out about Travis’ special heart we were terrified. The day of his diagnosis was a blur…through the tears, we remember the words “there is no cure but there is a well defined surgical approach”. We weren’t sure we were up to this challenge. We questioned a lot. Why us? Could we hand our baby over for surgery after surgery? Is it fair? It took us awhile to accept our fate and we decided that our little dude was going to be a fighter and we were going to fight with him! Little did we know that the next year and a half would take us on the most extreme ride of our lives. This journey was filled with fear, questions, unknowns, sleepless nights, helplessness, anxiety and terrifying medical procedures. But through it all there was hope, laughter and LOVE, lots and lots of love. Love oozed out of us….our family….our friends…. and love oozed out of our boy. He truly was the most loving, joyful, smiley baby boy around. The last 16 months have been the best months of our lives.
Travis had gorgeous eyes, a brilliant smile, he said “melmo” and “brobro” when he saw his favorite characters, he LOVED to dance to New Edition’s Cool It Now, he was SO proud of himself when he learned to throw a ball, he loved being pushed around on his tricycle, he loved to watch people (especially kids), he LOVED chocolate pudding and oreos, he loved to snuggle with mommy, he was addicted to his paci and Yo Gabba Gabba. He loved to chase his dogs all around. He loved water: whether it be swimming classes, a bath or just his dog’s water dish. He had a sassy attitude and a myriad of expressive looks. Man, you could certainly tell what he was thinking! He loved staring contests (even though he ALWAYS lost because he would laugh first) and wasting whole rolls of toilet paper. He loved reading and he knew how to “pray” when it was time for bed. He loved Christmas lights and messing with his new sister. He enjoyed life and brought joy to everyone around him!!! It is amazing how many lives one special little boy can touch!
We wanted to thank all of our friends and family for their support and understanding as we fought alongside our warrior. I know it was difficult for some of you to understand the magnitude of his condition but we so appreciate the prayers and love that you all shared for our boy! Through every surgery and difficult time we felt the love from “Team Travis”. We also want to thank Travis’ doctors and nurses who were so gracious and supportive even when we had a million and one questions and even when we wanted them to hypothesize the “unknowns”. We are not sure that there are adequate words to appropriately thank them. Hopefully, looking around this room at all the love that this one little boy brought to the world is proof that they make a huge difference. Travis was pure joy and we are so very grateful for every minute and every memory we had with him!!
Travis, we promise we will continue to support CHD research that may someday find a cure for all the little special hearts. We promise to keep your memory alive. Your daddy and I will always, always have you in our hearts and in our lives. We will make sure your sister knows just how much you loved her. We will miss you more than we can fathom but we will be okay….we know you would want us to be tough…..just like you, our little warrior. We love you Buggie!
Saturday, March 5, 2011
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Saturday, February 26, 2011
Travis Gary DiCarlo, the first child of Roger and Nicole DiCarlo, was born on October 23, 2009, in San Diego, CA. Travis was born with HLHS, Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, and fought valiantly until he lost his battle on February 19, 2011. During his short time here on earth, Travis touched many people who followed his story on a blog his parents created at www.teamtravis.info. Most people will remember his big beautiful blue eyes and his million dollar smile. Despite his special heart, Travis was always happy, watching and dancing to Yo Gabba Gabba, chasing after his dogs, and people watching.
Everyone who met him fell in love instantly. Travis was a true warrior and will forever be missed by his family, friends, and people across the country who never even met him. His legacy will live on as his parents made the selfless decision to donate his organs so that others may live. The family requests that those who loved Travis please consider organ donation, the greatest gift of life.
Travis is survived by his parents Roger and Nicole DiCarlo of Fallbrook; his younger sister, Addison Sue DiCarlo; Nana Sue Roberts of Vista, Grandparents Roger and Karen Sue DiCarlo of Temecula; Aunts Tina Gagne, Deb Hawes, Jen Mulloy and Angela DiCarlo; Uncles Daniel DiCarlo, Ryan DiCarlo, and Don Zollo; Great-Grandmother Jane Williams; numerous friends and family, and the entire CHD community. Travis was preceded in death by his Papa, Gary Gagne’.
The family is extremely grateful to Rady’s Children Hospital; Kaiser Hospital; the Ronald McDonald House; and Doctors Lamberti, Levy and Klaudt - all of whom fought so hard for our angel Travis. The family also extends its thanks to all of the many doctors, nurses, and staff that participated in Travis’ care. The family is extremely grateful for Mark Kuhn, the family’s pastor and his wife, Carol Kuhn, who have been with the family since the beautiful day of Travis’ birth.
A Celebration of Life will be held on March 6, 2011, from 1:00-4:00 pm at Williams Barn at Walnut Grove Park, 1950 Sycamore Drive, San Marcos, CA.
Marriott Towne Place Suites
2201 South Melrose Drive
Vista, CA 92081
$93/night; $140/2 bedroom suite
Mention code: .....Coming soon...
La Quinta Inn
430 Sycamore Ave
Vista, CA 92081
$61-66/night AAA rate
Friday, February 25, 2011
This is a poem is found in the prologue to the book
Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome: A Guide for Parents
I'll lend you for a little time
a child of mine," He said,
"for you to love the whole while he lives.
It may be six or seven years
or twenty-two or three,
but will you, till I call him back,
take care of him for me?"
"He'll bring his charm to gladden you,
and should his stay be brief,
you'll have his lovely memories
as solace for your grief."
"I cannot promise he will stay
since all from earth return,
but there are lessons taught down there
I want this child to learn."
"I've looked this wide world over
in my search for teachers true,
and from the things that crowd life's lane
I have selected you."
"Now will you give him all your love
nor think the labor vain,
Nor hate me when I come to call
and take him back again?"
"I fancied that I heard them say
'Dear Lord, Thy will be done,
for all the joy the child shall bring
the risk of grief we'll run.'
'We'll shelter him with tenderness;
We'll love him while we may,
and for the happiness we've known
forever grateful stay.
But should the angels call for him
much sooner than we planned,
We'll brave the bitter grief that comes
and try to understand.'"