Saturday, May 16, 2009

Home

Got home early this afternoon. The whole living room has been converted into Maura's room, complete with the necessary hospital bed and equipment. She has a perfect spot where she can see all that is going on. Such a relief to be home! Please call Kara first, if you intend to come see Maura. She will have the latest info on visitation. For many reasons, we must severely limit the number and length of visits. Thanks for understanding that her family needs time with her.

For those who don't know what has happened: Maura's kidneys shut down last week after her tumors returned with a vengeance. There are no more effective treatments that she can take. Anything done now would prolong her suffering, and she does not want any extraordinary measures taken. She is at peace; she is not afraid to die; and she is absolutely sure that she will soon be in Heaven. Amazing grace, for sure.

40 comments:

Anonymous said...

I just found out today about Maura's struggle this last year. I want you to know my prays are with you.

Jenna Kendziora

dhbryan said...

So glad to hear you are finally all home. Maura's home-going will be from home surrounded by the people she loves best, in the house where she grew up. This is a blessing. Relieved to have that peaceful picture (as opposed to cramped hospital) in my mind. Thinking of you all. Prayerfully, Diana & the Bryans

Anonymous said...

Maura, you and your family have been in my prayers these last years and are certainly in them now. You have one of the most beautiful spirits I have ever seen and it seems that even in this time it is still just as bright. I am so glad you can be home with your family and I hope you are as comfortable as possible. I love you and am confident that the Lord most certainly will bless you and keep you! I'll see you soon.
Love,
Anne Powell

Billie Snow said...

Maura,
You have always been one of the favorite lights in my daughter's life. I just arranged for Chelsea to fly home from France to see you tomorrow. Our prayers and love are with you and your family. Thank you for being such a wonderful freind to my little gal. All of our thoughts are with you from the gang at Air France.
Billie Snow

Thea said...

DeSouza family :
I just received news about Maura and the fact that her kidneys have shut down. I want you to know that she has always been an inspiration...to me and many others that she had the opportunity to meet. My church and I will be praying for you all. Please sesnd Maura my love since chances are I won't be able to get down to Houston anytime soon.
-Thea Chapman

Anonymous said...

I found out about maura a few days ago! I've read thru the whole blog and I know have to say that I'm truly inspired by her strenght during this hard time!
I know God will keep her safe! All of you are in my prayers!
Love from Germany

Mara

Anonymous said...

I heard that Maura was battling cancer through a mutual friend of ours, and reading the blog has truly inspired me her amazing courage and love for her family and her life! As well as her faith in God is a blessing to so many! I pray for strength for her family and that the love of God surrounds you all during this difficult time! Elizabeth Malmberg

Anonymous said...

Maura,

I went to school with you and graduated with you and know through mutual friends that have and always will be an amazing loving person. Please know that you are in my prayers. I admire your courage and faith knowing that you will soon be in heaven and what a better place it will be. I pray that your time at home is peaceful and comfortable and that God bless your family and comfort them. Cancer is a mean mean thing and happens to the best of people, like you! You inspire me to continue to grow in my faith so that i too can have your courage and faith to be ok with life's evils. Thank you for being an inspiration!
Thinking and praying
Sheena Kelly

Kristi said...

I found your blog through a prayer request on Facebook. Your family is a true inspiration, and you are all in my prayers.

May you continue to find strength in the Lord through this struggle.

Linsey's Mom said...

Maura, I don't know if you remember me, but I am a friend of Danielle's from Spring Baptist (...and the rest of your family too!). I have been so inspired by you over the course of the last year. Know that you are obviously as beautiful inside as you are on the outside. Your spirit is wonderful, and I am blessed to read your story.

I am praying for you and your family. On the other side of this difficult time is a wonderful place of love and perfect beauty. I pray that your family is able to rest in the knowledge that you will be in heaven cheering them on. Know that I feel very blessed to have known you and learned a great lesson in strength and grace from you.

Best wishes to you! You are loved!

Kim Mericle

Anonymous said...

That's amazing! I am excited to hear her sing Baritone in God's choir one day! She is a wonderful person! I love her dearly!

>Elizabeth M. Ilseng

Sheryl Murphy-Manley said...

Erin, You are the best mother that ever lived. Our prayers are for Maura and all of you.

Nikki Belshe said...

I can only be inspired by Maura. There aren't words adequate enough.

Praying for you all.

Katie said...

I just want to tell you how much i truly admire you Maura. You are so brave and your spirit is so uplifting. I know that you have been a blessing in every single life that you touched, just being in them. You are a very amazing person, and always have been. I remember you always with a smile on your face and a positive attitude about everything. I know that God has much greater things in store for you. My prayers are with you and your family.

Katie Ocanas

Shari said...

Peace be with you all. And especially to Maura. My love and prayers go out to you. Shari

De Pinto's Corner said...

Thinking of you Maura!

Love,
The De Pinto girls

Anonymous said...

I posted this on Facebook on April 30th. Maura clicked on it saying that she liked it. I wanted to post it here for her again and all of you in her family.

Today's Daily Word - Thursday, April 30, 2009

Inner Peace
Serenity flows from the depths of my soul. I am immersed in peace.
Sitting beside a clear stream, I relax and watch as a slender fish faces the oncoming current head-on. Instead of struggling against the rushing water, the fish remains peaceful and calm, allowing the current to run past its body. Barely moving, it has become one with the stream.
This simple observation is a message of peace for me. I realize that I can escape the rush of daily activity. I become still and feel the quieting effects as serenity flows from the depths of my soul. Immersed in peace, I am one with God and experience a tranquility that restores me. Relaxing further into the presence of God, I am both recharged and refreshed.
I can reexperience this sacred moment at any time. Centered in the peace of God within my soul, I am calm and serene.
"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you."--John 14:27

Anonymous said...

Maura -

I know you from SHSU School of Music and everytime I saw you it was as if you were glowing. You are someone that so many people fall in love with. You are indeed very special. I've followed your mom's blog from the very beginning and prayed for you every time you crossed my mind (and it was every day)
I remember singing in a small group with you once and you said I had a pretty voice. That meant the world to me because it was coming from you. Your smile is one of the most beautiful smiles in the world and it brightens so many peoples lives. You have touched so many hearts.
I haven't cried in a long time. When I read this latest post I cried out and prayed from the depths of my soul. And I will continue to pray for you daily.
You are one of the most beautiful people I have ever met and I thank you for the love you bring to this world in God's Glory.

Dana said...

Wow if I could only have a piece of that kind of strength and peace. We are praying for you Maura and your family. I've heard there are people all over the world praying for you. Well now you have people in Moscow praying for you, my small group full of people from Denmark, Kenya, Great Britian, the middle east and more, we are all praying for ya'll!

Anonymous said...

I am Julien's mother. Chelsea has often spoken to us about Maura and I was very moved by her graduation video.
I wanted you to know that even if we're 5000 miles apart, I'm very much close to you in my thoughts.
Sincerely

Chantal Paquet from France

Anonymous said...

Glad to see you made it home, Maura. I bet that feels alot better!

Thoughts and prayers,

Crystal Clifton

p.s. You and your family are on the prayer list at Spring Baptist.

Anonymous said...

Dear DeSouza Family:
I have shared your blog with several friends whom I know are lost. They need Jesus. I know that your "story" is truly HIS-tory! My prayer is that your testimony of how you have lived out the GRACE of GOD will cause them to turn to Him. You're life is a powerful testament to HIM.

Elsa D. said...

Erin and Maura,
I can't find the right words. I just want you to know that I am thinking of you. Hope is the last thing that dies and miracles do happen.
I really wish we could kick sarcomas from the face of this earth.
Love,
Elsa

Cecilia Mariz said...

Dear ERIN and Joel:
We are so sorry. We can imagine what you are going through.Asking God to help you with your suffering we send you our prayers.
From Brasil we send love and hugs to Maura.God bless you all.Cecilia and Silvio Mariz

Anonymous said...

Dear Erin and Joel

Please note that Cecilia and Silvio Mariz are Joao's aunt and uncle, who live in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Seaag said...

Maura and family,
You are in my thoughts and prayers. I'm so grateful to have been able to share your journey through this blog. To see the shining light that is your spirit. I'm glad you are at home, surrounded by family and friends.
God Bless you all
Donelle

Anonymous said...

To all of you, you have all fought hard and uphald the value of one life for all the living. Maura is the same age as my older kids. I know you as parents would take up the chance to trade places with her in a heartbeat. I can't tell you how I hurt for you.

A couple of years ago I was talking with a friend who had just found out she was in a fight for her life of a dream I'd had. In the dream I had been dying and then I was sitting by a tree next to a stream, and sitting against the tree next to me was a kid, maybe six or seven. I can't even say what sex, just a kid.

The kid wanted to know all about me. I was disoriented but it was a pleasant place and the youngster was so interested in what I had to say that it was wonderful.

"What was it like?" He/she asked, and I could look back on everything, and there was so much, even in the spaces I'd never considered important before. It was a dream full of joy and light.

My friend told me she had never had anyone talk to her about the possibilty of losing her fight. I explained that if she did come to that day sooner rather than later it would be the greater loss if she had not had a chance to reflect on what was wonderful about her living in the midst of the fight to prevent dying.

Everyone I know who knows Maura thinks the living she has done has been a credit to the one who will ask "What was it like?"

He will take even more joy in her than we have.

Love and peace to you all.

Lee Jamison

Anonymous said...

Maura will continue to be in my prayers, along with all of her family.

She is truly an inspiration to alot of people! She's an incredibly talented and dedicated woman!

I love you Maura and you are always on my mind!

<3

Living Teal,
Gilbert Millan

Anonymous said...

dear erin, joel, danielle, lydia, and maura,

just want to add one more (of the many) voices saying i'm thinking of you all. ever since i met you waaay back in 2001 at wheaton, it was so obviously what an awesome family you are. you love each other, as families should, but you also are genuinely best friends, make each other laugh all the time, and are 100% supportive of one another. i'm thinking of you!

love,
shannon golden

Anonymous said...

Wow Maura! What strength you must have to be enduring all of this. You and your family are in my prayers.

May the Lord Bless You and Keep You and Give You Peace.

Samantha Frazer

Anonymous said...

Although I do not know Maura that well, she has made an impact on my life and I want to thank you, her, and most of all God for that. My thoughts and prayers are with yall.
Love,
Katie Gary

Anonymous said...

You are an inspiration to everyone you have come into contact with Maura. We all love you and know your strength will get you through this. See you at the Met!!!

Praying constantly!!!!!

Love,
Ashley Monteferante

Anonymous said...

This song is my prayer for Maura, everytime I hear it, I sing it for her....

There's a peace I've come to know
Though my heart and flesh may fail
There's an anchor for my soul
I can say "It is well"

Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He is risen from the dead

And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise

Erika said...

Maura, Rodrigo and I love you and your family very much! Peace be with you all.we can't find the right words to say rigth now. we just want you to know that we are thinking of you every single day! Praying for you to be confortable and the pain goes away!

S said...

Hello DeSouza Family:

I am at a loss for words, such a mix of emotions between sadness and joy. Each of you are in my thoughts.

Much love,
Susannah Gairo

Dawn Padula said...

The strength that you all have shown as a family is truly inspirational. You are an example to us all.

Maura, my dear, you are always in my heart and mind. I wish you peace, love and joy.

With much love and adoration,

Dr. P

Anonymous said...

I have always looked up to Maura in admiration of her talent and in awe of her beautiful soul. Her faith is amazing and she has truly touched my heart. I am constantly praying for you all.

Love,
Courtney Greene

Anonymous said...

Maura,

I haven't seen you much since high school, but I'll never forget that you were one of the only people who included me in the theater department my freshman year. I thank you so much for being the influence on others that you have been, even through your struggle there are people who are coming to know Christ through your love and trust in Him. I love you and your family, Maura!

Kelly Tag

Anonymous said...

Dear Maura and Family,
I have checked your blog faithfully, and you have all been in my thoughts and prayers daily since last summer when I learned of your illness from Whitney. Your kind heart and beautiful spirit drew me to you while I served on the Choir Board with your mom. During this difficult battle you have been a beacon to many, and you have not waivered in your faith in God. You will receive your REWARD! Maura, perhaps you have sung (with your beautiful voice) "How Lovely are thy Dwellings", composed by Samuel Liddle. It is taken from Psalm 84. It is beautiful and comforting.
May God bless you and keep you, and cradle you in His arms.

Love, Kathy Hughes and Whitney

Anonymous said...

Maura. I don’t know if you remember me. Its been a really long time.. I am Mrs.Kiesos daughter i remember playing with you during play rehearsal.. during the wizard of oz.. you were amazing and then during all the other plays you were so good!! you were so sweet to me! mom told me today. All i could think was why.. how could this happen to such a sweet girl.. my thoughts are with you!!! I am relieved knowing that ill have a guardian angle that is so sweet and kind watching over me! mom said you weren’t afraid to go to heaven.. i saw this and thought of you... my thoughts are with you and your family!!! ill see you again Maura!!!


I Am Not Afraid To Die
By Joan Estelle High
©1994

Then I would be free to roam the world to see what I could see.
Or stay at home and read a book, if that's what interested me.
No clumsy body of flesh and bone to hold me to the ground.
I'd swing like a monkey in the trees, no need to walk around.
Visit Monks in old Tibet, see the Dali Lama if he is in town.
Could seek the wisdom of the past and walk on holy ground.
Join the crowd in Times Square and watch the ball go down.
Then when Spring dawns green, I would be southward bound.
Faster than the speeding light, quicker than the speed of sound.
New Orleans, goddess of the night, can be my Spring time town.
She oh so gaily beckons us and she is dressed up for the fair.
I would ride upon their spangled floats and never have a care.
Next to Ancient Egypt, I'll go to see the palace of the kings.
Study the Pyramids and Sphinx and do lots of other things.
I want to sleep beneath the desert stars, in this land far away.
Ponder about those who lived before, where they are today.
If you should hear, that I have died, please don't grieve for me.
I will be out there, having a ball when at last my soul's set free.