Monday, May 31, 2010

New York.

I was really excited to get to New York. It felt entirely different than any of the last times I visited. It felt like the start of my journey, like the start of all of these important goals that I have to finish for Meghan. I didn't at all feel ready for any of it.
When I took my first opportunity to talk about Meghan, or what I am doing because of her, I got choked up and scared. I encountered a problem I was unprepared for. Being scared to talk about Meghan. It's scary admitting to people, yourself, and the world that your wife is gone.
I didn't want any of it to be real. I didn't want to be traveling because of Meghan, I didn't want to be trying to finish her goals, deciding how many countries to go to alone, which places to volunteer at, which places it was ok to have fun in. I didn't want to be doing anything without her.
I forced myself to talk to a stranger at the bar that night about the the trip and I remember seeing pity in his eyes. It was an awful feeling knowing he was looking at me like I was one of "those" people. I was forced into this club of people who have felt tragedy. I am now one of those people that is referred to as 'poor' before my name in conversation. I don't want that. I want no part of it. Partly because it means that Meghan isn't with me anymore and partly because I hate pity. Meghan disliked people apologizing for what she was going through.
It's ok to empathize with her. It's ok to feel bad for her and her family. But please don't let that horrible incident define us. It is absolutely not what defined Meghan. Her cancer was the least important part of her life. How she lived it is what's important. Meghan dying is not what defines me. It is our life together thats more important, it's who she made me and how I am living now because of her influence.
New York is where it was decided that I would narrow down the volunteer project to five countries. Five, because Meghan wanted to live in five different countries. Each segment will last roughly three months and in between volunteer destinations I'll be visiting the countries in between to get to the twenty-three countries Meghan had left to visit.
New York was an eye-opener. I had no idea what I was in for. Being alone is scary, talking about why you're alone is scary. Trying to convince people to not feel bad for you and believe in what you're doing is scary. This is a lot bigger of a deal than I thought and I continue to find strength knowing it is what Meghan would have wanted.

- Adam

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Live On The Top

When Meghan was re-diagnosed earlier this year, her nurse told her something that I think is a great way of dealing with difficult subjects. She said "We know you have cancer. We know what it will ultimately do to you.  We know it's there and we're going to put it in the closet and move on. Its not going anywhere but its not doing anyone any good dwelling on it. Continue living as much and as well as you can and we'll deal with things as they come"
Being sad is the same way. Just being sad is nothing close to what Meghan went through but it still has negative effects on your outlook and day to day life. There are plenty of days I don't want to get out bed or get dressed or go see people and so on. We know the sadness is there. I know it will always be part of my life to feel horrible for not having Meghan here but being sad doesn't accomplish things. We have to put the sadness
somewhere else, know it's there but not let it have any control. Deal with it when it comes but know you will keep going.
Every time Meghan got negative feedback about her condition, I felt like I was being pummeled by a giant with a lead pipe. I know it was worse for Meghan. Somehow though, and you all know this too, she found a way to get back up and keep moving forward. She felt that what she was dealing with was important enough to share and document and she never let that depression beat her. Ever. She spent a lot of her time and effort making others feel better about what she was going through because she was incredibly strong, and wanted to show others that dealing with cancer in a positive way is completely possible.  She injected that spirit into so many of us and her words won't stop helping and inspiring others as long as I'm around.  
Meghan's legacy is one of hope, strength, battle, independence and will-power in the most pure and intense form I've yet seen. She had the worst luck I know of and she still
managed to get the things she wanted, every time. She fought tooth and nail until she had the answer she was after. Her hope with her writing was that anyone could derive a similar strength from her words and continue on in spite of their circumstances. To prove that no matter what, and even in death, people can still succeed with their goals.
This continues to be most confusing period in my life but I know that Meghan set me on a path that I won't veer from until I'm finished. Because of her. Because of her determination, her drive, her spirit, because she deserves everything she ever wanted to do or see. My hope, in addition to sharing her story, is to spread this message; when a community unites, so, so much can get accomplished.
There is a massive network of friends and friends of friends that can help the less fortunate in every corner of the earth.  We can all make a difference and an impact, at home or abroad. Because of loved ones or in spite of the bad hand you've been dealt. Being depressed, hurt or upset doesn't get things done. Wipe the blood off your face, bandage your wounds, get up, do better and do more, every time.

Saturday, May 22, 2010


It's hard for me to define if I'm making any progress or not. Meetings fall through, decisions aren't being made and I just feel tired all the time. I can't figure out a linear path for this project. It's
like every thought represents a line in my head and not single one is going in the same direction as another. Everything is infinitely more confusing than a month ago. I want to make this awesome for her. I want her to be proud. I want her to always be remembered and held in high regard.

I've decided to narrow down my approach to the service project. I'm
going to go to five places and spend three months at each location. I feel like
I'll be able to make more of an impact and better connections if I'm there for a substantial period of time. I've narrowed the countries/ areas down to Australia, India, Central/South America, Tanzania/ Kenya/ Rwanda area and Poland. I need to get in touch with actual schools, orphanages or farms, any project in these countries that needs assistance. Im looking to start putting the dates together and I need your help with finding people
that I can help. If you have connections in these countries, put me in touch with an actual person. I'd like to flesh these out so I can figure out a trip budget and more precise timeline for the trip.

Lastly, I'm worried that people aren't talking because they're afraid to. They don't know the "right" thing to say so they don't say anything. I need your help and communication. There is no right thing to say or feel, at all. None of this is right and it will never be right or just or OK that Meghan is gone. There will never be a right way to go about grieving for someone, no correct timeline, no correct magic word to make pain go away.

The five or ten or eighty steps to happiness or completion or whatever are complete garbage. You do things that make you feel better. You enjoy the good times when they happen and remember what it is about Meghan that makes you happy or feel stronger or better. Please, talk. Communicate. It doesn't matter
what you say as long as you are honest.


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Not Deciding is Deciding

It's hard doing things that are fun without Meghan being a part of them.
For every pleasurable part of this weekend, I wished she was here. Progress
being made for the service project is satisfying but I still feel
guilty for enjoying myself. I know that there is no right or wrong way
to grieve nor no correct length of time one needs to be upset with the
loss. When is it ok to have fun? When is it ok to be active?

We always wanted to live in a big city and New York would've blown
Meghan's mind. She would have had an absolute blast exploring the city and
finding new restaurants. A group of our friends and myself spent the entire day yesterday walking around and I imagined how she would have reacted to the amazing houses, the street fairs, noises, the park and gardens, as well as her place in our
conversations. Which person would she have chosen to talk to? What would they have talked about?

It was really hard yesterday. It definitely feels great to get
away but I'm half afraid I'll abandon dealing with losing Meghan and
try to pretend that I'm not sad or deal with the fact that the best part of my life is now gone. Meghan always made me deal with things. She always forced me
to talk about difficult stuff and wouldn't let me off the hook until I
had resolved the issue verbally, mentally and/or physically.

I'm really glad that what I'm doing is about Meghan and that I'm forced
to talk about her and deal with her loss every time I explain to
someone new what my trip is about. In a way it's almost like Meghan is
again forcing me to deal with this. She won't let me bottle all of
this up and slink off into a hermit-like oblivion. She wants me to
make something of myself. She wants me to be social and enjoy new
things and to actually deal with losing her. I will never ever
understand how any of this was fair to her or how she was so positive
and comforting for others. I will never forget her, her spirit or her
fight. She wants me to move forward. She wants me to decide to do
meaningful things and then to follow through and finish them.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Impact of Volunteering

"Everybody can be great because everybody can serve."

—Martin Luther King, Jr.

My goal is to pass along Meghans spirit, I want those who haven't yet been touched by her story to understand what she means to this world. I want to inspire others to pick up where their passed loved ones left off. Finish things set out for them. Move forward. Make an impact. 
I don't think that anyone would argue the benefits of volunteer service both for the volunteer and the recipient of that service. It strengthens community, there are health benefits for the individual and it leaves a lasting impact on the lives of those involved. 

In a report released by United Healthcare and Volunteer Match, they found that;

-More than 68% of those who volunteered in the past year report that volunteering made them feel physically healthier.
-29% of volunteers who suffer from a chronic condition say that volunteering has helped them manage their chronic illness.
-89% of volunteers agree that volunteering improved their sense of well-being.
-73% of volunteers feel that volunteering lowered their stress levels.
-92% of volunteers agree that volunteering enriches their sense of purpose in life.
-More than three-quarters of volunteers who participate in service activities through work report that they feel better about their employer because of the employer’s involvement in their volunteer activities.

Volunteer work is an excellent method of making positive gains for yourself both physically and mentally. You become part of something. There are tangible results to your work. The intangible results are the things you learn about yourself and your community. You Improve yourself.

Meghan had very clear and distinct goals that were all are centered around self improvement and learning through service. Whether it was forcing herself in front of her peers to teach, move to a completely foreign place or get to a certain level or aerobic health, Meghan was hell-bent on self-improvement. Which is something I think everyone needs a dose of now and again. Raw determination to get what you want and where you want to be.  

I was fortunate to have more than a dose (7:30 wake up calls to go to the gym may qualify as unfortunate or an overdose,) and plan to do all I can with that massive(and often forced) injection of sheer will-power. I am going to travel to 23 countries because Meghan would have. I am going to run a half marathon because Meghan would have. I am going to volunteer in an Indian orphanage because Meghan would have. I am going to inspire you to get what you want because Meghan would have. She already has for so many. 

Sunday, May 9, 2010


The word "community" is derived from the Old French communité which is derived from the Latin communitas (cum, "with/together" + munus, "gift"), a broad term for fellowship or organized society.[2]

I find this to be profound. with/ together and gift being combined into one word. It has been amazing to see this in action. We are all part of something powerful and far reaching and my hope is that no one loses sight of this. Meghan and I felt very blessed by the outpouring of love, support and solidarity. And Meghan very much wanted to pay it back in some way. It was very important for her to keep a record of everything she received from everyone. She wanted everyone to know how much it all meant to her. You all are wonderful. It's wonderful that we are all part of this. I want to carry this same spirit of gratefulness and global community with me every where I go, every step of the way. I want all of you to be part of this with me, to see the impact being made and to make connections of your own. Thank you so much for your help thus far. Don't just help me. Help everyone you can in need. It comes back to you one way or another.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Press Release

many thanks to julie campbell, we now have an official press release that can be downloaded: Here
or i can email it, get at me: Here
download, change the date to a current one and forward to your local paper, tv station, radio station, blog etc.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Travel Map

View For The Love of Meghan in a larger map


list of needs

These are the things that I need in order to get this project going. I'll be updating these when things are fulfilled(again, email - - me if you want to take care of one of these, just so i can keep it all straight or send me a personal message on facebook):

1) 32gb Ipad for travel writing/ updating blogs and uploading/ storing photos.
2) Handheld digital HD video camera
3) YOUR connections to media outlets. I'd love to spread the word to local newspapers, tv, online magazines, documentary filmmakers....anyone that can spread information fast. speaking engagements, meetings with your mp or mpps, reporters etc.
4) Business cards(something simple stating my purpose, why Im doing what Im doing and the links to Meghan's FB page and blog and my information.
5) Ipad Camera connection kit.
6) Pages app for the Ipad (can be gifted through itunes)
7) Numbers app for the Ipad (can be gifted through itunes)
8) Train tickets for the cross-canada trip (Sept)
9) Volunteer opportunities in every major city along the way
10) Mifi unit with service for Canada (just to borrow for the summer or so?)
11) Help setting up a charity and or non-profit org for donations
12) Destination Ideas - I'll be posting a very, very general map that i want all of your input to fill in and connect the dots.
13) a personal trainer. I suck at running, have a lot of it to do in the near future, and don't know where to start. Also, I'm really out of shape.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Live Harder

I think all of us are obviously reeling with the loss of Meghan. There is an emptiness left by her that I know Ill never fill. I don’t think Meghan and I met for her benefit, we met for mine. I learned so much from her in the past 3 years, invaluable lessons that speak volumes about who she is and what she meant to those around her.
Her family was without question the most important part of her life. I've never met a girl more proud of who her father is and what he has done in his life. The close friendship and trust she shares with her mother is something most of us will only be able to wish for. And the utmost level of respect and adoration she has for her brother makes me want to be a better man in order to be included in those ranks. She holds every single member of her family in the highest regards. She is so, so immensely proud to be part of the Bradley/ Baker clan. Just the same, I’ve never been more proud to be a Warner, and so, so proud that Meghan is a Warner, than I am of these past two years while going through this journey with Meghan.
And that’s the first and most important lesson Meghan taught me. Your family and friends are the best things you have, treasure them. When there is trouble you circle the wagons, stay near and do everything you can to fight. And that’s the second. You fight. You fight for the things you want, the things that are important to you and you never, ever give up.
And that’s the third. Live. Some of us aren’t given a lot of time here, so live and make an impact. Do important things and affect people positively.
And the last is ongoing. Learn. Never stop learning. There are lessons taught in everything, everywhere through everyone. Don’t let them fall on deaf ears. Be connected and in the words of one of Meghan’s best friends; “Cherish every fucking moment.”

The light that burns twice as bright burns for half as long - and you have
burned so very, very brightly.

In Meghan’s honour I’m going to finish everything on her list(s). Not just the most recent list, not just the one she wrote back in September, the ongoing list she had with those close to her. The things she wants to do that are wild and far off. Many have asked how to help and this is how you can. If there is something special between you and Meghan or something you know she wants to do tell me. If you want to be part of that trip tell me. I plan on traveling from place to place, meeting up with her friends and family and providing some sort of volunteer service in each place for her. If you have travel connections, airline miles you want to donate, money you don’t know what to do with or simply a couch to sleep on let me know. Read through her lists on her blog and if there is something that speaks to you let me know. Meghan inspired us all in many different ways and want to hear about all of them. So.... here we go- (Thursday, September 10, 2009)
Life Goals...
1) To hold a PhD, I'm not too picky on what it is going to be in. The way I am going though, I think it's bound to be nursing.
2) To learn another language. I've got a head start on Korean and French, I just need to get motivated enough to do it.
3) To master at least one of the following musical instruments - cornet, cello, piano, or guitar.
4) To live in at least 5 different countries - So far I've only got Canada and Korea. I'm assuming that I will have United States in the near future (preferably San Fran, DC, Portland and Maine). I'm thinking somewhere in Europe and in South America?
5) To run a half marathon. I've a lot of training to do though, seeing as the 5km I ran today was far from easy.
6) Spend at least 100 hours volunteering. (Note*** So far I'm up to 40h :))
7) Master the following- sewing, knitting & crocheting (Note*** on my way with knitting/sewing, kinda sorta.)
8) Become part owner of a Bed & Breakfast (with Adam.)
9) Travel to 30 countries. I'm at 7 now.
10) Read at least 12 books a year until I die (Textbooks NOT included).
11) Complete 'The Weekend to End Breast Cancer' 60km walk in Toronto.
12) Own a little cottage by a lake.
New Goals-
1) Take the train across Canada.
2) Go to an NHL game (don't really care where, I just want to go.)
3) Make Peter take me (and friends) to a Blue Jays game... I don't really have any interest in baseball, but I think it would be fun.
4) Go to the Symphony.
5) Get married (hahaha, um... no pressure Adam.)
6) Go to Canada's Wonderland with my friends/family.
7) Take a road trip back to Maine.
8) Go snowshoeing.
9) Go ice-skating on the Rideau Canal.
10) Get my darn tooth fixed.
11) Get some darn shiny nice new glasses.
12) I've always wanted to go to Ireland with my father... it's been a dream of mine since I was just a little girl. My father has been, and he loved it. I would love to share this with him while I still can. I don't think I'm ready to let go of this dream yet.
13) See the northern lights.
14) Travel to India to volunteer in orphanages.
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