10/26/1975 - 2/27/2022
Celebration of Life for Autumn Marie
3/19/2022 – Minneapolis, MN
Welcome, and thank you all for being here. Much peace and love to all of you.
There is no agenda this evening. We are here to celebrate, remember and comfort one another.
A few notes
- Help yourself to the hors d’oeuvres at any time.
- The mic is open all night. At any time, if you would like to say \ read \ share something, please feel free.
- If you prefer, there is also a memory book on a table by the entrance. Please add a note \ thought – as well as your names. We’d love to have a written record of those in attendance.
- The memory table in the center is filled with many of Autumn’s favorite things, plus many pictures she printed over the years that she always kept close by in the house.
- The picture montage playing (we may wait until sundown to start) is a collection of photos of Autumn – there are >800 photos in random order – enjoy as many as you can.
- The music playing is a collection of ~100 of Autumn’s favorite songs. It is a wide array of genres and tastes and she’d be so happy to share it all with you.
- Autumn was cremated in Fort Wayne, IN. Her ashes are there right now. We don’t have a plan yet on if \ when \ where we might spread them.
- Our oldest daughter, Samantha, is not planning to be here tonight. She is sadly unable to support the family right now.
Autumn’s Blog – https://autumnmarie.org/
Many great thoughts to explore
Autumn’s Instagram – titaniumbug
Lots of cute pictures and videos – fully represents Autumn
Please take a packet of seeds and a dark chocolate bar as you leave – also located on a table by the doors.
Andrew & Makaela
A little bit of tumor herstory
Autumn was diagnosed with a brain tumor in September of 2009. She had her 1st full resection at Cleveland Clinic in December of that year and was diagnosed with a mixed glioma. Brain cancer had \ has no available conventional cure and Autumn was given 4 to 6 years. From 2010 to 2019 things were generally under control as we managed symptoms, continued to monitor progress with regular MRIs, discussed additional treatment options with Cleveland Clinic \ Mayo Clinic \ University of MN and researched \ tried every possible non-conventional treatment option we could find. The Standard of Care for brain tumors has not meaningfully advanced in our lifetime and offered \ offers limited options. In late 2019 things took a turn for the worse, and in June of 2020 Autumn went through a 2nd full resection at the University of Minnesota. The tumor, which had upgraded to a glioblastoma (GBM), was now referred to as “The Terminator,” and Autumn was given a prognosis of 12 months. Despite the news, Autumn continued to live her best life. She doubled down on research which led her to some additional alternative approaches to hold back the tumor. During her last three months, the tumor was devastating to Autumn – both physically and cognitively. In February of 2022, amidst new uncontrollable back pain, we discovered the tumor cells had metastasized to her spinal column. True to form for Autumn, this happens in <2% of GBM patients – most do not last long enough for it to show. With no reasonable path forward, we made the difficult decision on 2.20.22 to stop treatment and bring her home. Autumn passed away in her own bed at home on 2.27.22 surrounded by those she cared most about. She remained optimistic, strong, kind and loving through both the best and worst of times.
A note of thankfulness
It’s impossible to quantify in a few paragraphs the profound impact Autumn has made in my life and on our family. Nevertheless, I will share a few notes of thankfulness and gratitude.
I am so grateful for Autumn and all the time we shared. The bank of memories is overflowing with 23+ years of selfless love and kindness. How lucky am I to be the one she chose – to have had the privilege of living, learning, and thriving with a woman of such character and strength.
Autumn’s true ambition was to orchestrate and enjoy a good life – full to the brim of meaningful relationships and experiences. She walked the line perfectly between squeezing every drop from each day while still methodically investing for tomorrow. Autumn dedicated herself to being the best possible mother, teacher, wife, and friend. She was ever the cheerleader, encouraging us to do more than we imagined possible, to try again, to never give up, and to be prescriptive about the life we wanted to have. “If we just keep talking and planning, it will happen!”, was one of her favorite phrases. She was right. She was constantly advocating on our behalf – never shying away from difficult conversations as needed – on her quest to make our life better. Autumn had a veracious appetite for learning and consuming new information which stretched us all into new experiences. Many of the transformational and defining aspects of our life and family were possible only because of her resolve and constant challenging of accepted norms – including her amazing success in staying alive well beyond the original prognosis.
She loved life and was the absolute best. I can’t give her enough credit. She was my best friend. I will miss her forever – and will carry her torch forward.
P.S. F@ck Cancer – it’s a horrible disease. My heart breaks for all who are or have been impacted.
i carry your heart with me
i carry your heart with me (i carry it in my heart)
i am never without it (anywhere i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling) i fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true) and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
i carry your heart
(i carry it in my heart)