Sunday, November 19, 2017

Warfare of Emotions

Guest post by Lauren Najar.

I lost my mom in 2008 - complications from Colon Cancer and my dad passed away in 2010 from a massive heart attack.

Neither deaths we saw coming.  Both were very sudden.  Both of my parents were very young.  My mom had colon cancer on and off from the time I was 14 until she passed away.  She had a strong prognosis to survive the cancer but died of a blood clot entering her heart and her heart immediately stopped.  She collapsed at home where my family was (I was at work and didn't witness anything).

My mom was our glue.  She was mostly a stay at home mom and was always driving us everywhere and made dinner every night.  She was everywhere with the three of us kids.  After she passed, my dad quickly tried to replace her by learning how to make meals.  My dad was always the authority figure in the house but he quickly changed into a softer side of himself and I felt this made my dad and me a lot closer.

My dad passed away from a heart attack.  He was a type 2 diabetic and was on a lot of medications for high blood pressure but he had recently lost weight and was living a little healthier. 

For me, being the oldest - I felt that his death was the hardest in the sense that I felt everything was on me.  I felt everyone was looking to me.  Even though my sister and I are only 14 months apart, I got a lot of comments about how I am the woman of the house now, and I am the oldest and I am the caretaker.  With both of their deaths, I reacted in two very different ways.

As life has gone on, not a day passes by where I don't think of them.  My husband and I live in the house I grew up in where five people used to live so I am constantly reminded of them.  Through them, they have taught me life is way too short.  My mom, who had cancer and was linked to an oxygen tank before she passed away, was still going outside and going for walks with my dad and still TRYING to force herself to get better.  She would wheel around the house in a rolling computer chair to do chores in the house.

My dad lost the love of his life where he had been with my mom for 30 years before she passed.  But he lived on for us, and didn't give up on us.  He tried to be "dad and mom".  He taught us that we still need to live our lives where we are so young and we need to keep going on with our goals.

The last almost ten years now without them, I feel I have this zest for life burning now that I can't shake and I need to keep "living" life.  You can't waste life.  I am 30 now, my mom died when she was 46 and my dad 52.  These are YOUNG people.  I have so much I want to do that life now has taught me to go out and live it.  We can't sit and wait around for tomorrow.  We have to live now.

Blog:  Laugh Always
Bio:  I am Lauren Najar and the founder of Laugh Always.  I am a two time cancer survivor and I created Laugh Always as a way to help lift people up in times of difficult journeys.  This is a group of people who come together to help one another get through and share stories of motivation.  Laugh Always was a term I created during my first round of cancer and to me, it describes the attitude of how you should approach life in general.
If you would like to read more of my stories, then you can follow me on TwitterFacebookInstagramPinterest.


  1. Oh this kind of blog humbles me and shows the silverlining each one of us has.

  2. Your story touches the heart and you have gone through a lot. Accept my condolence


  3. I am sure all your parents want you to be happy, their blessings will always remain with you.

  4. True. Life must go on, and there's nothing we can do but LIVE. Live like there's no tomorrow.
    Touched by your post, Lauren!

  5. I love getting to know you, Lauren. You are an incredible woman. I agree that life is short and we need to make the most out of each day we are given.


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