About Me

Kathryn Bradley was born on 2/5/91 and given a Hawaiian name Kahiwalani meaning "Gift From Heaven" She has been a special gift from the day she was born.

Friday, February 3, 2012

First Night and Full Day without Kathryn 2-3-12

The first night and full day without Kathryn 2-3-12

Another beautiful day but a bit dimmer without Kathryn.

Last night I read one message that really gave me back some faith. A friend of mine Jim said a minister heard from God and he said, “Sometimes I take the cancer from the person and sometimes I take the person from the cancer.” I guess Kathryn was taken from the cancer. It doesn’t make not having her any easier but it does give me a little understanding of why Kathryn is gone from this earth. He took her from a body that had nothing left.

Kathryn really fought. She first lost the use of her right hand. Not completely but enough to take away the ability to draw and write. As an artist this was very difficult for her. At first she tried to get her right hand to work by practicing. She finally compensated by working a little slower and using her left hand. She made my birthday cake that way. She painted a beautiful ski picture for Richard with her left hand. And for those of you who were at my birthday party remember the place we took pictures at, well that back drop was made by Kathryn, too. Then came the inability to walk straight. She fought this too. She finally did allow us to be an arm for her. But not all of the time. While in Houston she would shortly before we were going to leave she would practice the stairs. We would walk up and take the elevator down or take the elevator up and walk down. She was getting ready for home. When we were leaving Houston she got on and off the moving sidewalks in the airport all by herself. She wanted to be independent. At home she would walk around the circle downstairs by herself to practice and get stronger. When her vision became double she would close one eye to compensate. If she closed one eye she could see better. She started to have trouble with her swallow and she found different ways to drink (with the help of Dad). She would eat slower and chew more. She choked a couple of times. She never complained about any of these things. She just worked harder to get by her obstacles. When she lost her ability to talk she used the computer or she would write or use sign language. Finally each one of those became too difficult to do too. Communications became a simple head nod or smile or hand squeeze. Then this all faded and her digestive stopped working right. By this time she just didn’t have enough to fight back with. Then her little breaths became small and her little heart stopped beating. She just fell asleep. She fought more than any of us could ever do and without complaining or crying. She was protecting us too. She didn’t want us to be sad or hurt.

I’m still in shock and waiting for her to come home. Waiting to see that beautiful bright smile. Waiting her hear, “I love you.” She told me often that she loved me and I’m so glad she did.

While we were sitting in the family room last night we thought we heard a car door around 8:30 or 9:00. My friend from school had stopped by and she bought a gift. A Bradley team ring. It has four hearts with little diamonds in them. Four hearts for the complete team.

When it was bed time I found it difficult to go to sleep. After sleeping with Kathryn since late October with the room lit enough to see her face the darkness of my bedroom started to give me a panic attack. It was so weird to be in my room and in the dark. I have been watching Kathryn at night for so long that it seemed the natural thing. I finally took a sleep aid and fell asleep for a couple of hours only to get up and take another for a few more hours of sleep. Also sleeping with Kathryn's baby blanket that she took everywhere gave me comfort.

Today we will chose the clothes for Kathryn’s viewing. The last time I did this it was for my Grandma Peggy. I was 14 and went through her closet. I found the outfit that reminded me of her the most. A top with brown, yellow, and orange and brown slacks. Her gold earrings and simple gold chains. Her glasses trimmed in gold and her gold watch. I can still picture her. I can still feel the comfort Pastor Feoge gave me. I think I left mascara on his robe. He is still comforting our family. So, now how do I chose the clothes for Kathryn. A beautiful outfit or a fun outfit? At breakfast we decided. An outfit with her Panda name tag. Something fun and spirited just like her.

We did our planning at the funeral home. The viewing will be from 1 – 5 on the 11th at Mountain View Funeral Home 4100 Steilacoom Blvd. SW Lakewood, WA 98499-4012. The service will be at noon on the 25th with a reception following at Emmanuel Lutheran Church 1315 North Stevens Tacoma, WA 98406. If you have a special photo of Kathryn that you would like to share with us we would appreciate it.

We had a few friends and Family drop by tonight. It is good to see people and get hugs and feel their love. The food is great, too. Flowers and special gifts have arrived and we thank you.

People say that those who leave this world really don’t. They say you will see signs of them or something. When I would lay in bed with Kathryn I could always smell this sweet smell. A few times today I could smell this same smell. It was the weirdest thing. Maybe Kathryn is watching over me. It would be just like her to make sure I am working on my happiness. She would not want to see me sad but I am. Honestly my life will eventually go on and there will be happiness but I will never get over this great loss. Scott, Richard and I will all stick together more than ever. We will share life and find happy times. We will celebrate times for Kathryn.
Her birthday is Sunday and we need to do something special.

Keep reading and pray for our family to continue to have strength and to find our happiness.


  1. You all have been so brave through all of this and you all fought as hard as Kathryn did. I so admire the strength and love you have all shown to everyone who has had the opportunity to see it.
    Kathryn has touched so many lives, she will always be remembered with that brilliant smile.
    Take care my friend and know my heart goes out to you and your family.

  2. Richard and Bee don't know how to edit so the date of service was left off. It is in there now. The Service is the 25th of February.

  3. Carol, You will find your hapiness, in a new way, with the memories from your daughter and what she taught you. Her spirit was one that was here to teach us all, in her kindness, her smile and her spirit and her shine. You have all been amazingly strong through this and your light will get brighter because she will continue to giude you. Love to all!

  4. Dear Carol, I want you to know you and your family have changed my life for the better.As I have watched this sad journey you have undertaken it has made me look at the world from a whole new perspective.All the things I used to worry about seem so frivilous compared to what you have been through.Today when I hear people complain about stupid stuff I think of you and go Really? Do you really think you have problems?You should see what my cousin is going through, now thats what you call pain.I am learning to laugh love and live because of you.I know that God works in mysterious ways because of you I am stronger and more determined to get my life together and have the courage to try and walk again.Kathryn's remarkable strength has inspired me to live life to the fullest no matter what the obstacles are.And not to sweat the small things in life.If I could have waved a magic wand Kathryn would have gotten better but God had other plans for her.But please know that she helped save my life and I am a better person today because of her and her family.I love you, cousin Donna

  5. Dear Carol,

    Beautiful words from a loving mother's heart. Thank you so much for sharing Carol. You, Scott and Richard are in my thoughts and prayers. Richard, you will always have a special place my heart.

    With love,

    Lori Jacoby

  6. Chris Hoffman-FagundesFebruary 4, 2012 at 4:28 PM

    Carol, Thank you so much to you and your husband for making the journey to Fife today for the Fife-Milton-Edgewood Relay For Life Kick Off. We were so blessed to hear your story and have you continuing to share Kathryn with the community. I had not realize that her and I were diagnosed 2 months 10 days apart almost 13 years ago. Her impact will be long lasting within Relay For Life, it is no mistake this year its forming in FME, its no mistake as you and I both spoke today directly across the street from the school, its no mistake this beautiful day was filled with sunshine, laughter, tears & hope. I pray for your family to feel her smiling upon you :) Jesus hugs to you and yours, From The Fagundes Family.

    PS. We will raise above and beyond our goals set...we RELAY FOR LIFE...WE RELAY FOR Kathryn :)& the others in this community!WE ARE TEAM FIFE-MILTON-EDGEWOOD & cancer doesn't know who it's up AGAINST!:) Smile little girl in the heavens..because your joy and life has touched many & will made a difference for years to come...

  7. Dear Bradley Team,
    Kathryn is in our memories and we are better for them. I thank you for sharing Kathryn with us after graduation on our trip to Disneyland. It made our trip all the more special having her with us. I remember the last ride that we went on. It was the train ride that went around the park. Kathryn was amazed that I (Dan) never went on it and said it was a must. We ran to the ride to get on the last train but we made it and it was magic sharing this with Kathryn. It is the happiest place on earth and she made it even happier! She will now be the Butterfly that lands on your shoulder, the Ray of Sunshine that hits your face, and as you say Carol, The Sweet Smell that you take in when you least expect it. Kathryn is all around. We will pray for your Family Team for strength in you time of mourning.
    We send our love,
    The Family Youngchild