Damien "Joey" Joseph Kam

Damien "Joey" Joseph Kam
February 11, 1965 - August 28, 2009

Honoring the great Memories...

Damien's Memorial Plaque was installed January 16, 2010. It is located in the Garden of Reflection Memorial Book. Inquire at the mortuary office if you are not sure of the location, and they will give you directions.

Pacific View Memorial Park
3500 Pacific View Drive,
Corona Del Mar, Ca 92625


One day we'll disappear together in a dream

However short or long our lives are going to be

I will live in you or you will live in me

Until we disappear together in a dream


Damien's Memorial Plaque

Damien's Memorial Plaque


If you would like to contribute to Colin's College Fund in Damien's Memory:

Send a check to:

College Savings Iowa

P.O. Box 55119

Boston, MA 02205-5119

Reference #450079529-01 on the check

Or if you use Online Bill Pay you can issue a check as referenced above.

For more information regarding this type of account please visit: https://collegesavingsiowa.s.upromise.com/

A special thanks to Judy, Cyndie's Cousin, for putting together Colin's college fund.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving ...

Today has been hard for me, like I'm sure most holidays will be for the next year. It will be a year of many "firsts". Tuesday was my first Birthday without Damien. And today was my first Thanksgiving. But I'm trying to stay focused on the positive today ...

Damien & I so wanted to have another child, and I get sad sometimes knowing that will never be. But I am so very thankful for the one beautiful happy healthy child that I/we do have. So many people don't get to experience the amazing journey of parenthood, but I have been blessed with this gift. And Damien will always live on through Colin. Our one very precious child.

I thought that Damien & I would be together for many more years. Til we were "old & grey". Til the end of time. Unfortunately, our time on this earth is not guaranteed ... something I never gave much thought to at this stage of my life. But I am so very thankful for the 9+ years I got to share with Damien. Most people go a lifetime without experiencing the bond that we had. He was the most caring, giving, selfless person I have ever known. He was kind. He gave all that he had. A truly gentle soul. He loved nature and all living things. He was the best dad & husband anyone could imagine. He thought of his family before anything else. He loved unconditionally. And I was blessed with him for 9 years. How lucky I am!

I am also very thankful for my family & friends. Especially those who have stuck with me in both good times & bad, happy & sad.

I am thankful for my life, and everything & everyone in it ... it is a life less ordinary than most.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

A day in the life (part 1 of many)

I'm still trying to get used to being on my own ... completely on my own. I know this will take a while, trying to settle into a new routine.

So today I took Colin to My Gym class, to make up for Thanksgiving. I normally take him on Thursday mornings, which are usually filled with stay-at-home moms, grandmas, nannies, and the occasional dad. Saturdays are a bit different, as you can imagine. There were several dads, as well as moms & dads together. It's hard for me to deal with this, as its just another reminder that Damien isn't here anymore. I was already really sad about this when Damien was sick and stuck at home. I'd take Colin out for a little while on the weekends, and I'd see all these happy families and wonder if that would ever be us again. Now it's just so much more permanent. There's no more wondering. But I force myself to push through it all ... right now, it's mostly for Colin, but someday it will be for me too. I want someday to be truly happy again. Another thing that's difficult right now is that sometimes I feel like the only single mom everywhere I go, even though I know that's not true ... probably far from it.

I've been trying to keep busy during the day, especially when Colin is taking his nap. I took one look in our fridge today and almost ran for the hills ... it was so dirty. There were tons of crumbs and bits of food and sticky stuff ... all from the wonderful foods that people have been putting in there over the past several month. I just had to clean it, and it would keep me busy. And I discovered how something as mundane as a fridge could bring back memories. I remember Damien went out & bought it when we moved into our first apartment together in Long Beach. He picked it out on his own and everything. It has held the food & drinks of many good times, either just us on our own, or with family & friends. It has moved from place to place with us. It has never given up on us. So I just had to clean it. One hour, one roll of paper towels, and 20 toothpicks later, it was done.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

reality is setting in ...

Reality seemed to truly hit me tonight. I felt like I had a sort-of flashback. It was 5:45, and I was staring out the kitchen window. I was remembering how I used to stand there, waiting to see Damien driving down the street toward our garage. It always made me happy to see him coming home from work. He'd come in, give me & Colin a hug & kiss, run upstairs to change out of his work clothes & take his contacts out (his eyes always got dry after a day of working at the computer). Then he'd come back downstairs, and either take over baby duty, or cook dinner, or sometimes we'd go out to eat. Then we'd usually go for a walk around the neighborhood. We'd talk about our day.

Just staring out the window tonight reminded me that that would never happen again. Several cars drove down the street and pulled into other garages. His car has be sitting quietly in the garage for months now. I had a mini-meltdown that took me about an hour to get over. It's so eerily quiet here now.

They say silence is deafening ... that couldn't be more true.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A new chapter

Today Barbara (Damien's mother) went back to Hawaii after staying with us for almost 12 weeks. We went to South Coast Plaza this morning to let Colin ride the reindeer carousel and do a little shopping. Lester (Barbara's cousin) then picked her up around 12:30 to take her LAX. Colin kept staring out the stain glass window by the front door, as if waiting for her to come back.

Tonight will be the first night Colin & I will be alone here since Damien went into the hospital. As I got ready to put Colin to bed, he was looking around for Grandma to say "nite nite" to. The house just seems empty. It's a really strange feeling. It is, however, time for me to figure out my new routine and find my new *normal*. It will be hard, and will definitely take some time, but it is necessary. I have to find a way to move forward. Besides, I know Barbara's family misses her! Colin & I are going to try to get back there for Christmas this year ... it's going to be very hard this year, so it's best to be around a lot of family.

I know I can count on my family & friends to keep be from being "alone".

So begins a new chapter ...

Colin saying "bye-bye" to Grandma

Monday, November 16, 2009

The song in my head ...

I've had this song stuck in my head for a while now by Robbie Williams (yes, I'm a closet fan - he has a great voice!) ... then I was sitting here watching Dancing With the Stars, and one of the couples did a dance to it ... coincidence?

"Angels" by Robbie Williams

I sit and wait
Does an angel contemplate my fate
And do they know
The places where we go
When we're grey and old
'cos I have been told
That salvation lets their wings unfold
So when I'm lying in my bed
Thoughts running through my head
And I feel the love is dead
I'm loving angels instead

And through it all he offers me protection
A lot of love and affection
Whether I'm right or wrong
And down the waterfall
Wherever it may take me
I know that life won't break me
When I come to call he won't forsake me
I'm loving angels instead

When I'm feeling weak
And my pain walks down a one way street
I look above
And I know I'll always be blessed with love
And as the feeling grows
He breathes flesh to my bones
And when love is dead
I'm loving angels instead

And through it all he offers me protection
A lot of love and affection
Whether I'm right or wrong
And down the waterfall
Wherever it may take me
I know that life won't break me
When I come to call he won't forsake me
I'm loving angels instead

Friday, November 6, 2009

I'd like to give thanks ...

So it's been 10 weeks today since Damien left us. It seems so long ago since I last saw him or spoke to him. Sometimes I'm afraid that I'll forget certain things about him ... like the sound of his voice, the feeling of holding his hand, the details of his face. It's scary. I can still hardly believe that he is no longer here.

But one thing I know for sure is that he is present and that he is so grateful that everyone has taken such good care of me. So at this 10 week mark, I wanted to take the time to thank everyone for all that they've done ...

For all the phone calls to make sure that I'm doing OK

For all the food that has filled our pantry, fridge, and freezer

For all the diapers, wipes, food, and other necessities for the baby

For all the cat food, litter, treats, and attention to my other "kids" to make sure they are OK too

For all the visits to our home, to talk, laugh, cry, share stories, or just simply to "be here" for me

For all the cleaning of our home ... sweeping, dishes, laundry, scrubbing, and general picking up of stuff

For making all the phone calls that I couldn't

For stealing me away from the house for a while, just to get out

For the flowers & cards that filled our home

For watching & entertaining Colin so I could get things done

For helping me make the difficult decisions

For the advice & suggestions

For jumping in and helping out whenever needed

For taking care of things without hesitation

For the endless love & support from family & friends, as well as complete strangers who have reached out to me

And most of all, to everyone who came to Damien's Memorial Service, who travelled from near and far, who filled the chapel beyond capacity to say goodbye to a wonderful man ... I am forever grateful & truly thankful ... my heart was filled by all the people who loved Damien & who considered him a friend.

And a special Thank You to my dear friend Denise X, who started this blog in memory of Damien, as a place I can continue to share memories with everyone, and write of the journey I now embark on ... what a wonderful thing for Colin to be able to read one day

And especially to Linda (my sis), Richard, and Angela, who were there with me (and Damien) that night

Thank you all so very much!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Vote for Colin!

Hi everyone,

Here are Colin's Halloween pics taken @ Belle Aime Studios ... they are having a contest for the cutest costume (like last year), and I hope you'll vote for him!!!!! The prize is a free photo shoot + free 8x10.

To vote:

1. Go to this link: http://belleamiestudios.wordpress.com/2009/10/31/panda-party/

2. To vote, you must write something under "Leave a Reply", then fill in your name & email.

3. Click the "submit comment" button, and that's it!

The kiddo with the most comments wins the prize :o) Thanks so much ... we could use the free photo shoot :o) Hope you all had a fun Halloween.

Take care,
Cyndie & Colin

By the way, Belle Aime Studios did all of the professional pics that you see on this website. They take amazing photographs and are wonderful people to work with :o)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A strange day

So today I decided that I really needed to clean our bathroom ... I hate to admit it, but it's been months. As I moved everything off the sink to clean it, I decided to take Damien's things and put them under the sink. Maybe I could just start getting used to the idea of not having his stuff around (yet I know it's under the sink, so it's not really gone yet) ... one little step forward ...

Then this afternoon, after Colin got up from his nap, I thought it would be nice to take Barbara to Downtown Disney for dinner & just to hang out with the baby. It ended up being totally crowded for some reason. It took us forever just to find parking. Then it happened (the first of many times I'm sure). We're sitting there eating, Colin's fussing because he wants to get down, and I hear these words being sung over the outdoor speakers:

"I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don't let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories ... "

A fairly well known song by Sarah McLachlan. I only hear the chorus ... and when I do, for that one moment, every other sound just becomes garbled in the background. My eyes start welling up, and it's all I can do not to cry. And just as quickly I snap back to reality, the song has faded into the background. I don't think anyone noticed.

I know it sounds weird, but I think it's Damien ... his subtle way of communicating with me (just like in life). Things like this keep happening. Someday I'll write about the hummingbird that keeps coming to our bathroom window ...

I know I'm not crazy.

Colin and his pumpkin

Here's a few pics of Colin with his pumpkin. We carved it a few days before Halloween.

At Irvine Park's Pumpkin Patch with our pumpkin

Looks harmless enough

Ok that's yucko ...

Colin's spider pumpkin :o)


Colin had a great Halloween ... the Xagorarakis's had us over for a nice dinner, then it was off for some Trick or Treating with the boys! We all know that Damien was with us, because out of nowhere, as I was carrying Colin down the street, he started pointing in the darkness saying "Dada, Dada". This has happened many times now, and I no longer get freaked out about it. It brings me a sense of comfort, knowing that he is there, watching over us :o)

Me & Colin, with Denise & Avrum ... our boys have been friends since they were in our bellies!

Colin with his bucket of candy ... a total pro! However, my little panda refused to wear his hood.

Waiting for the goods ... "more please"!!!!