On the fourth of July, 2007 Caleb Potter was involved in a skateboarding accident.
He suffered serious injuries and continues to need all of our positive thoughts and prayers.
This blog is to serve as a space for updates on Caleb's journey of recovery.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

My young men are so impassioned with a desire to understand their dad and his circumstances, that I now am able to relieve tension with a blown out tire sigh, and trust that they will chart their course..a healing course.

We are preparing our pilgrimage to Western Ma. for the end of May when Kai will graduate from U Mass. Max has just applied to a program at U Mass for next year, so we are excited about the prospects of his getting accepted.

There have been many late night talks by candlelight, many smiles, many tears, laughter and desolation; but the talks always end on a positive, rather that negative note.

Caleb and I have decided that the focus right here, right now will again go back to him. He was bowling again last night and he kicked the proverbial butts playing against Max and Timmy, who are seasoned bowlers. I always get a chuckle out of that, and they are gracious about losing.. The end of May, when Kai returns full time to home and the landscape business, we will be joining the local health club to get rid of that tummy that Caleb picked up from all the home cooked meals that all of our friends dropped by on a regular basis. Looking down just now makes me realize....mom's got one to work off as well!

I am looking forward to more Kayaking, more bike rides, more rejoicing.

Through all of this hectic activity of late, I am noticing that time somehow still slows down a bit..and the focus of our lives goes automatically to those who are needing it. It is lovely, simply lovely, to be able to stop in our paths, to be able to witness the treasures that sit right in front of us..and to simply cherish.

Be well ... as we are


Saturday, April 26, 2008

I first laid eyes on him in passing--he was on the town bench in the centre of Fleet, I was speeding by in my Orange bug and I flashed him a flirtatious smile, the kind where you have nothing to lose cause you'll never see the guy again. Much to my surprise, he was standing in front of me only an hour later - this time with the heat in my face rising to a full flush and Jan asking if he could join the club for the winter..he was building a house and the plumbing was not in... he needed a place to shower.
Our first date was dinner at his place..sitting on a rug -- the menu was cheese, purple grapes and wine with Jean Piere Rampal wafting through the walls and then through my mind. I remember thinking he was the most handsome creature I had ever seen.
I spent the next week hiking the Appalation trail with quiet all around and a head full of boisterous thoughts of Jan.

A year later we were married and Caleb was arriving in May. Jan sold that house; he had started it with his first wife and we wanted a clean slate. On moving day we packed and were settling in when my water broke.. The midwives were called. It started getting dark and we did not yet have electricity , or running water, so Jan started the charcoal grill in order to boil the water that they might need. In one short hour Caleb appeared, brought into the world by candle light and us, midwives still on their way.

Fast forward to 84 and Kai was with us , then Max followed in 86. Two more beautiful boys.
Jan was so proud to have 3 little men.
He had this spectacular, herculean strength and his favorite thing to do was pitch the kids into the air and catch them when they finally dropped back to Earth. He taught me to let them find their own way by not fussing over them.. he wanted them to decide what worked for them and what didn't --I did not get to dictate this for them. He was all about their freedom and allowing them to police themselves. He trusted in the process of natural consequences. I trusted him.

Then we move to the place where our marriage began to unravel. Jan was so gifted and so kind hearted that many, many nights after working all day, he would spend another few hours helping out a neighbor, or moving someone into a new home, or whatever it was that anyone needed..... he spread himself so thinly that there was no time for himself or for us. He did not have the means to say no... and we all suffered the consequences this time.

But Jan was true to himself and if I had to describe him in a nut shell I would say he was a man of love.. he loved people, he loved his boys, he loved the ocean and at one time he loved me.
I will miss him and his big smile.
I am happy to know that somewhere out there walking the streets is someone who is living now because of his big heart.
and I wonder if I might just not recognize him in passing........

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

where we are now

We are now a murder of crows...the boys and I ; congregating with fear and loathing and desperation ; heated tempers abound and low self esteem is a chorus from each corner of the room. What ever did we do to get here, we ask? The tension in the air can be gutted like a pig- it is so dense, and our emotions spill out like entrails to the floor, piling one on top of the other to be sorted out later because we cannot remember what it was we wanted to address a second ago, let alone what we need to look at now.
The rind of our skin is raw and our minds are unraveling.
This is what it is to be left behind . .this is what it is to be left.
I am worried sick over the boys and how they take this to heart and hug it tight like a hot kettle, not dropping it even tho it burns.
Now that we have closure with the service, we have clots in our hearts . This has to be the lowest point in our lives and climbing back out is a necessity, but where the rope comes from, I do not know!

We will make it, we must make it.
We will make it - will we make it? we must!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


The most recent shock wave to blast through the Potter household has slowly settled to a point where we can all finally look at each other and not find ourselves staring back at the "deer caught in the headlight" look.
We are a tumble of all emotions at once.. sad sometimes, angry at others and mostly lost in the confusion of our minds which will not wrap itself around this.
Once again, the support from everyone is more than we could hope for...thank you.

I wish to address the negative posts that found their way to my eyes before Sky could remove them. I must say that at first I was aghast at the insensitivity. As a younger woman this could have destroyed me for weeks.. but now in this space and time it has given me a measure with which I can calculate how far I have come as this woman that I have morphed into over the years. I can read negative things that were clearly meant for me and brush them aside with a blessing to the angel who delivered them, for that angel was reminding me once again to know, as I know my own name, the woman I have become, and which I now proudly lay a claim to.

For the aftermath...

Sarah, Ken (Jan's sister), the boys and I have become a team support group and we all feel very strongly about keeping in touch with one another through this and have planned a memorial to Jan that we feel is appropriate to him. These two women are crushed with grief and yet maintain clarity of spirit, strength and dignity. I adore them.

The boys -- well the boys are holding up as well, if not better than I expected. There are wisps of soliloquies that reach my ear in passing, there are eyes swollen with tears, there is the deafening quietness, but there is also the hand which silently lands in mine with a prophecy of hope and the pursuit of something that is bigger in terms of understanding. They have chosen a life which has handed them many obstacles... but not a single one that can render them helpless. They are beacons of light and they will find their way.

I too am feeling the loss .. I used to tease Jan by saying " You can end a marriage, but divorce is forever". And this was true for us.. we had issues as anyone can guess, but as a young bride I loved him so very much and when you walk away from each other you cannot just put that love on a shelf .. it stays with you.
I am certain that Jan is now in a better place for Jan, and I am relieved for him. I will celebrate him and my life with him on Sunday and I will choose to play on the side of positive. I don't think I will wear the traditional black of mourning, but I will wear all white as a sign of the light I see in him, and for the freedom he has claimed as his own..

Monday, April 14, 2008

Article in the CC Times


written by Robin Lord, photo by Steve Heaslip

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Eternal love

“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are messengers of overwhelming grief...and unspeakable love.” -Washington Irving

Jan & Sarah

Caleb, Max, Jan, Sharyn & Kai

Sarah & Jan


Sarah, Rachel & Jan

Max, Caleb & Kai

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Girlfriend update!!

I wanna try to start this blog on a happy note 2night. caleb and i had a DAY DATE 2day. we went to Provincetown and looked at the boats, had some pizza at Spiritus, shopped alil, and just acted like a normal couple, with laughs and hand-holding. I have to say i was glowing the whole time and it was really nice to smile for the first time after such an emotional week.
Caleb is working very hard at therapy. he is going to stop doing phyiscal therapy, because RHCI said they can not challenge him anymore, so onto the GYM. Caleb is going to have his 6-pack back in no time. we are working on caleb's memory, he still does yoga, and many other holistic therapies as well. He is getting very good at bowling, rummy and horse-shoes. Also, calebs adorable personality is coming back, and his smile could bring a tear to your eyes.

It has been a week now since Jan has left us, and sometimes there are no words to describe the saddness that is being felt. There was a reason why i wanted to blog today, and that is because i just wanted to give everyone alittle insight into how this current tradegy has affected caleb. One of the part's of Caleb's brain that was affected by his accident was his short-term memory. At times, caleb will not remember what he did a half hour ago, and sometimes it is just five minutes and his short-term memory is gone. So, when having to explain to caleb about his father, well this was obviously planned well and thought out. Caleb does not always truly understand that his father is gone, and this is something that we all need to be sensitive to. We all know that when you see caleb out in town, you are going to want to hug him and try to make him feel better, but at that moment, caleb may not remember that his father has passed. So, we are asking one thing.... if you see caleb out, please do not say anything about his father. I know you all want to consol him, and we totally appreicate that, but he doesnt remember all the time. So, if you try to consol him, it will only confuse him. When caleb asks about his father, we remind him of what has happened. there is no textbook way of trying to make someone with a severe brain injury uderstand that their "pops" will not be walking in the door anymore. So his family is doing it in the way that they feel is the right way for caleb.
So please, everyone try to be positive on this blog. the whole fmaily reads it everyday. I know i personally check it like every hour. So, lets keep our comments positive and lend support to a family that needs it.
Thank u everyone for your positive support and prayers.I love u all
-love jennie

Monday, April 7, 2008

A photo taken last week of Jan, his mom and his sister, Ken

Jan, Kai, Max & Caleb



Sunday, April 6, 2008


I can tell you now, there were times I thought I was in hell before ...I wasn't even close.

Thursday, April 3, 2008


There will be a celebration of Jan's life on Sunday the 20th of April at high noon at Newcomb beach. A pot luck at the Lindsay/Potter residence will follow on Long Pond rd. All are welcomed....... please park at the Long Pond Parking lot and walk in.

The boys ask that you understand that they have chosen life!

(click on photo to enlarge)

Memorial information will be posted as soon as it has been decided.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Holding you all in our hearts

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

The first of April

It may not be for awhile that I am able to speak to you..
I sit before you with a spasm in my heart, a bludgeoning of my soul.
I watched with horror as Kai slumped over his father and wept...I reached out for Max moments before he shut down ....
I sat with Caleb as he tried to sift through the fog of his already damaged brain....

This morning, Jan sorted out his life into neat little piles on his kitchen table, walked with a loaded gun to the beach and shot himself.

I rubbed his head moments after his body was still..and I felt his blood trickle onto my little finger.
I pressed his blood to my lips, drank it in..... and gave him a final kiss goodbye.