Quick Facts

Born: 27/04/2007
Time: 03:31 pm
Place: Ajax, Ontario
Weight: 6 lbs 3 oz
Length: 19.5 in
Wyatt Steven Berndt

JOURNAL

2 Years today....
posted on 16/05/2011

Please take a moment today, remember Wyatt, what a brave, courageous, strong, amazing, adorable, loving little boy he was, and think of what he taught you.

Hug your children tight and treasure every moment.

Wyatt, I love you just as much today as I did 2 years ago, if not more.  I know you are always with me, and guide me through every day of my life and have changed it in so many ways - but I would give it all up to have you back, even for just one more day. 

I Love and miss you more than words could ever explain,  I can't believe you have been gone as long as you were here.  How does someone so small, and with such a short life, make such a massive impact?

All day I have had flash backs of the last days of your life, and what followed.  It's haunting, but I don't want them to go away either.  I will continue to hang onto every ounce of memory I have of you - good and bad - because that is all we have now.  I hope that your memories of us, and of being here are as amazing and love filled as the ones we have of you. 

Super Auntie

xoxoxoxoxoxo



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Here we are.....
posted on 05/04/2011

Hi Everyone,

Hard to believe we are only 22 days away from what would have been Wyatt's 4th Birthday, and just 41 days away from Wyatt having been gone for 2 years.
I have found myself reflecting a lot on Wyatt's life the last couple of months, even more than normal, because it occurred to me that when we pass this "anniversary" of sorts (of his death) this year, he will have been gone as long as he was here - yet I feel like he was always here, and I fluctuate between feeling like it was only yesterday that he died, and that it has been an eternity since I saw and held him.  It's an entirely screwed up feeling.  I see my kids growing and changing every day, their pictures on my wall changing, pictures on my cell phone changing, and yet Wyatt's remain the same.  When I got a new phone recently, I panicked because I no longer had pictures of Wyatt on my phone - so a friend (so smart:)) told me to email one to myself and open and save it on my phone so I had at least one.  I felt better after I did that - a little.  I know of course in my mind, that it's not the same, but at least now I can pull out my phone and still show pictures of Wyatt.  The pictures on my fridge are the same ones that have been there gor the last 3 years, of my kids with Wyatt.  I have thought about cleaning my fridge off, but can't bring myself to do it. 
It is funny the things that I/we do that make me think even more of Wyatt, wonder what he would be doing now, what he would like (and wouldn't like). How big would he be, would he be walking, would he be home (in my mind I always imagine that yes, of course he would be home!).  We would be taking him to the Zoo, which I am sure he would love, planning a trip to Disney sometime in the near future, and right now we would be planning a big 4th Birthday bash. 
Instead, I am still answering questions my kids ask about where he is, and why he died and will they see him again, and is he playing with his balls.  My daughter looks up at the stars all the time and talks to him, which is really ironic because if you ask her where he is, she will tell you he is in his bed (at SickKids) playing with his balls and eating madagascar cake.  I guess those are her two most vivid memories of him, and that's what she believes he is doing now. She still asks to visit him.  Yet she talks to him in the stars.  The boys of course know that he is not, but don't know what to think or believe in terms of "where" he is now and what he is able to do there and will they see him again.
I wish I had the answers for them.  2 years later, I am still looking for satisfactory ones for myself.

As time continues to march on, I still don't think there is a day that goes by that I don't cry - sometimes they are sad tears, sometimes they are happy memory tears - whether I hear a song that reminds me of him, see a show he liked, a toy he used to play with, or see something that would look cute on him - but can't buy for him.  Or I walk into the hospital and smell hand sanitizer, or smell his cream, or walk into the OR waiting room.   Or sometimes I meet really great people because of him still, and while it makes me happy, because I have met so many amazing people because of him, it makes me so sad too, because he is not here to share in it with us.   We met so many people when Wyatt was alive of course, SO many, many of which I still consider to be among my best friends - Dan & Jess (Emma), Cortney & Mark (Sofia), Sara (Chance), Cristiana & Kevin (Isabella), Jeff & Leanne (Parker), Steve (Dr.) Schwartz, Jen & Kevin (Grady), Chrissie (Shelby), Laura & Brian (Owen), Osami... and many many more (please don't feel insulted if I left out your name!) But what is even more amazing to me, is the number of people Wyatt brought in to my life AFTER he died.   He was no longer physically present, yet has such a presence that he has brought and continues to bring more amazing people into my life every day.  A few examples of those people are Kayla & Sawyer, Heather & Paul (Zack),  Randy,  Mel & Brian (Tyson), the amazing donors & supporters we have now like our friends at Graziella's - all of these people have come into my life because of Wyatt. 
When I look at my life now, and see how much it has changed in the last 4 years - SO much of it is because of Wyatt.  He taught me so much, and really, he is still teaching me every day.
I miss you so much Wyatt, words could never ever explain.

xoxoxoxo
Super Auntie



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3rd Annual Have A Heart Gala
posted on 12/01/2011

Hi everyone,

I hope everyone had a good Christmas / Holiday and New Years.  Hard to believe we are in 2011!
We are now exactly 1 month away from our 3rd Annual Have A Heart Gala - also hard to believe!  This time 2 years ago we were hanging out with Wyatt in CCU.
I just wanted to take a moment to remind everyone of the details of the Gala and let you all know how you can get your tickets.

Saturday February 12th, 2011
Grand Baccus Banquet Hall and Conference Centre - Toronto
5pm - Cocktails & Hors D'oeuvres
6:30pm - 5 course meal
Open bar all night
Live performance from Award-winning Comedian Doug Funk
DJ & dancing
Silent auction
Raffles
Chance to win a diamond from Graziella Fine Jewellery
AND MORE!!!!
Don't miss out on this amazing fun filled night for a great cause.  All proceeds benefit The Labatt Family Heart Centre at The Hospital for Sick Children and families affected by Congenital Heart Defects through Jennifer Ashleigh Children's Charity. 
We have a block of rooms reserved at a reduced rate at a nearby hotel for those who would like to book one, please contact me for the details.  It is literally a 3 minute drive from the hall, so great for those who don't want to have to worry about driving home afterwards.
Anyone is welcome, so please help us spread the word!

Ticket pricing is as follows:
Early Bird- $110 per person until January 15th
After January 15th - $125 per person
OR
$1000 per table of 10

You can email us at laura@wyattswarriors.ca or call 289 404 1021 for more information or to get your tickets!
We really look forward to seeing you all there celebrating Wyatt's life, remembering him and all the other angels, and honoring all those still fighting. 
It's a great way to celebrate Valentines Day, or have a fun night out with friends, family or co-workers.

We are also still accepting donations and sponsorships for the evening, and if you are interested in one of these opportunities please contact me!  We truly appreciate it!

We love and miss you so much Wyatt, this is, as always, all for you baby.

Laura
www.wyattswarriors.ca



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Merry Christmas
posted on 24/12/2010

This photo is from Wyatt's first Christmas - Christmas Day 2007.
Here we are, Christmas Eve 2010.  Hard to believe.  2nd Christmas without Wyatt.... 2 Christmases here, now 2 Christmases gone. 
I am at work today, and brought my daughter.  When we came out of the parking garage and into the hospital, the first thing she said was "Mummy, can we go see Wyatt and his friends now" and pointed up to his room.  She still doesn't really understand.   I have to say being here Christmas Eve is pretty brutal. 
Even though the 2 Christmases Wyatt had here were spent in SickKids, they were the best Christmases I ever had, and I don't think that Christmas will ever be the same for any of our family again.  No matter what there will always be one very special little boy missing Christmas Eve, Christmas morning, and Christmas dinner.  Yes, I know he is with us in spirit, but that just isn't the same.  Not even in the same vicinity as same.
While I see all the little boys who are around the same age as Wyatt would be all I can think is that he should be doing the same things - bouncing off the walls excited, running around and talking about Santa.  I would never hesitate to have another Christmas in SickKids, even all the rest of them, if it meant he were still here.
So, Merry Christmas to everyone.  Hug your children and cherish every minute.
To everyone who is feeling the same way this Christmas, our thoughts are with you all.  I can only hope that there is one heck of a Christmas where they are.
Merry Christmas Poopy, we love and miss you so much, not a second goes by that we don't think of you.

xoxoxoxoxox
Laura


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A little Holiday update.....
posted on 29/11/2010

Hi everyone,

Christmas is quickly creeping up on us and we are in the full throws of our Annual Holiday toy drive, Gala planning and so on...
Last week I attended an Angel Tree of Light Service held by the Bereaved Families of Ontario (BFO).  It was a beautiful service held to honor and remember our angels at Christmas time.  The people at BFO made an angel with your child (or nephew, or grandchild or whatever) name on it and hung it on a tree.  There were speakers (all parents who had also lost children) and then lit the tree.  It was beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time to see how many families there were there - all for the same reason.  I am so glad I went, and plan on making it an annual event for myself and the kids.   We got to bring home the angel at the end of it, and it will now go on our tree.  It is so hard to believe that Wyatt has been gone for 18 months now.   I am finding this Christmas season far harder than the last.  I think the numbness and protection from that, has worn off now.  It is REALLY hard to get into the spirit of Christmas this year, though we keep trying.  My way of trying and dealing with it all is by trying to help other children like Wyatt - other families like ours.....
Our toy drive kicked off on November 15th, and runs until December 15th.  We have several locations set up in several different areas.  Please visit www.wyattswarriors.ca to find a location near you, and if you can't make it to a location and would like to contribute, please feel free to email or call me and we can arrange something.  Gift card and financial donations are also always welcome and would be used to purchase items off the hospitals highest priority needs list.  In addition to the locations listed on the website there are also several "private" drop off locations such as schools, offices, daycares, hockey teams, birthday parties etc who have all been collecting toys for us, even though they are not open to the public. THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts, to all of you who are helping to put smiles on the faces of the children who will spend their holidays in SickKids this year.
The toys collected are going to be collected on the 15th of December and then delivered to SickKids to be distributed to all the children in hospital over Christmas (not just Cardiac).  We know first hand what it is like to spend Christmas at SickKids, and what a difference it makes for these kids and their families to have these gifts.
Please remember toys need to be NEW and UNWRAPPED.
You can check our website for the complete list of items needed.

Wyatt's Warriors 3rd Annual Have A Heart Gala is coming up Saturday February 12th, 2011.  Early bird pricing is available until January 15th and is $110 per person OR $1000 per table of 10. After January 15th tickets are $125 per person, so get yours before prices go up!  You won't want to miss this great night.  Taking place at the Grand Baccus in Toronto, the night consists of an hors d'ouevres and cocktail hour, a 5 course meal, open bar, DJ, dancing, silent auction, raffles, and a live performance by award winning Comedian Doug Funk.  Proceeds from the night benefit the Labatt Family Heart Centre at the Hospital For Sick Children and families affected by Congenital Heart Defects.   If you are coming from out of town we do have a block of rooms reserved at the local Holiday Inn at a reduced rate.  Contact me for the info on that.  Everyone is welcome.
We are also still looking for donations for our silent auction and raffles and also for sponsors.  If you are interested, please contact me.  We appreciate everything and anything you can help out with.

If you are looking for ways to honor Wyatt's memory for Christmas you can make a donation to his fund at SickKids here http://my.e2rm.com/personalPage.aspx?registrationID=672480 or you can always mail a donation to us.  We have had some people recently collecting donations in lieu of birthday gifts and donating them to us.  If you are interested in something like this, please get in touch with us and we can send you the cards.

Our exciting news for the day is that Wyatt's name and Wyatt's Warriors are now permanently on the wall in SickKids (see picture attached).  We are SO proud, and so greatful to all of you for making this possible.  We think it is very fitting that Wyatt's name forever be on the wall of his home for everyone to see.  If you are strolling down the halls of SickKids, check out the "Partners" section on the Donor Wall and you will see us :)
Thank you everyone for your ongoing support, we really appreciate it.  It means the world to us and to all the other families of children with CHD's.

For more information on anything please contact me at
289 404 1021
or
laura@wyattswarriors.ca

Happy Holidays everyone, don't forget to cherish every moment.

Laura


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19/10/2010

Update

Hi Everyone!

It is hard to believe that our little man has been gone for 17 months now.... Gone, but never ever even for a second forgotten.  I am happy to be able to keep him in my life on a daily basis still, and although I would trade all this to have him back in a heartbeat, I am proud to give an update that shows you all that has been happening, because of one sweet brave little man who was only here with us for 2 short years.  Amazing what one person can accomplish, long after they are gone.   I love and miss you so much Wyatt - this is all because of and for you.....

I wanted to give you all a little update on our busy month of September and our upcoming events!

September was a very busy month for us - we had a booth set up at the Brooklin Harvest Festival on September 11th, which really helped us to raise awareness as we got to chat with hundreds of people that day about what we are doing and why.  We also had all the kids that came by, decorate hearts which were then brought down to the Hospital and hung up on the Cardiac Ward and in CCCU, to cheer up the spirits of the patients there.  It was a beautiful day, a great experience all around and we look forward to next years!  Visit www.wyattswarriors.ca and click on Events and Other Adventures to see some photos from the day, and some of the hearts hung up in SickKids!

On September 18th some of us attended the Labatt Family Heart Centre BioBank's Family Education Day where I was a guest speaker.  Another fantastic experience where we got to hear up and coming things in the CHD world, recent discoveries, what is believed the future holds, and some amazing personal experience stories.  I was honored to share Wyatt's story, and if you are interested in hearing it, please click here http://www.youtube.com/user/lauracelsie?feature=mhum where you will find my speech (in 3 parts).  We met some new heart families, reconnected with ones we hadn't seen in a while, and made some fantastic new connections in the CHD world, which are leading us into some exciting new ventures.  What an awesome day!

On September 26th, we had our 2nd Annual Walkathon.  What a day!  The weather was perfect, the location was excellent, and what an incredible group of people we had come out!  We were so happy to see some old friends from SickKids whom we hadn't seen in a very long time, and so thrilled to meet some new heart families, that we had not met before!  It was amazing to see all these families, their friends, coworkers, neighbors etc all come together for such an important cause, and to help make just an awesome unforgettable day.  For those of you who weren't there, you missed out on face painting, a balloon release for our CHD angels, the walk itself, a delicious BBQ, raffles, prizes for the top fundraisers, and a fun filled interactive drumming show with Ron Cross and his Random Acts of Rhythm.  We truly had a fantastic day, and can't thank everyone enough.  So thank you to all of those who came out and spent the day with us, and to all of you who donated, sponsored a team, donated prizes, food, beverages, volunteered your time, EVERYONE, because of you we raised $25000 for the Labatt Family Heart Centre at The Hospital for Sick Children.  That is AMAZING!!!!  We more than doubled what we made the first year, had more than twice as many people in attendance. I am already looking forward to next year. THANK YOU!!! THANK YOU!!! THANK YOU!!!!

WHAT'S NEXT!!!!
Wyatt's Christmas Toy Drive
Running from November 15th to December 15th we are having locations set up all over the place to collect toys that will then be brought down to SickKids and distributed to the children in the hospital at Christmas time.   There is a link on our website with all of the locations we have confirmed so far, so please visit
www.wyattswarriors.ca and on every page you will see the gift tag that you can click on to view the locations.  Our hope is to have one in every area so that anyone can access at least one drop off location.  If you are interested in having your business be a drop off location, please email me and I can send you all the details.  There is really nothing to it except a willingness to collect the toys for that month, with a drop box, a tree, or whatever you prefer, and we will arrange to pick them all up and bring them to the hospital after the 15th.   Last years toy drive was a HUGE success and we hope to repeat that again this year, with your help!  We will provide you with posters, and will advertise you on our website.  You can email me here or call me at 289 404 1021 for more information.

Saturday February 12th, 2011  Wyatt's Warriors 3rd Annual Have A Heart Gala
Tickets are now on sale for our 3rd Annual Gala, being held at Grand Baccus in Toronto http://www.grandbaccus.com/     These make a fantastic Christmas or Valentines gift!  Cocktails & Hors D'oeuvres will begin at 5pm, followed by a delicious 5 course meal, live entertainment, silent auction, raffles, DJ, dancing, and OPEN BAR.   Proceeds from this event with be distributed to the Labatt Family Heart Centre at The Hospital for Sick Children and to families affected by CHD's through Jennifer Ashleigh Children's Charity http://jenniferashleigh.com/  We have introduced new ticket pricing this year, and they are priced as follows :
EARLY BIRD - Before January 15th- $110 per person                                                                                                                                      January 15th - February 10th - $125 per person                                                                                                                                                         BEST DEAL - $1000 per table (10 people per table)                                                                                                                                             **PLEASE NOTE THERE ARE LIMITED TICKETS AVAILABLE** 
We have reserved a block of rooms at a discounted rate at the nearby Holiday Inn for anyone who will need a place to stay for the night http://www.holidayinn.com/hotels/us/en/markham/yyzmk/hoteldetail please contact me if you need the booking details.
                                                 
We are looking forward to a fantastic night, and hope to see you all there.  EVERYONE is welcome.

Last, but certainly not least, we are looking for a few more board members for our Foundation.  If you are interested, please email me and we can discuss what you are interested in. *Please note that you would be required to attend meetings.*
Thank you everyone for your continued support, we are truly making a difference in the lives of CHD kids, and it is thanks to all of you!

See you all at the Gala!

Laura



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Lots of News.....
posted on 19/08/2010

Hi everyone,

Wow, where to begin.  It has been a little while since I updated, and a whole lot has happened. 
We had our golf tournament on June 19th, and with your help and support, we raised over $12,000.  Thank you all for that.

We are currently looking forward to our Walkathon on Sunday September 26th at Heydenshore / Rotary Sunrise Park in Whitby.  Registration begins at 11am, and walk at noon.  You can choose to do 5km or 10km.  The walk will end up back where we began, where we will once again have an interactive drumming show with Ron Cross and the Random Acts of Rhythm, enjoy a BBQ and present prizes to our top fundraisers!  It will be an excellent fun day, suitable for the whole family.  There is no fee to enter, and all participants raising over $60 will receive a Wyatt's Warriors t shirt. 
To register to collect pledges online, please click here
https://secure.e2rm.com/registrant/LoginRegister.aspx?EventID=56055&LangPref=en-CA
if you are unable to attend the walk itself, but would like to support, please sponsor us here http://my.e2rm.com/TeamPage.aspx?teamID=165530&langPref=en-CA Every amount helps!
Donations made online receive an instant tax receipt by email.
If you are looking for paper pledge forms, please visit
www.wyattswarriors.ca and click on upcoming events.  There you will see the printable pledge forms.
We hope to see you all out there!

If you are interested in sponsoring the walk, donating prizes or BBQ items, please get in touch with me at
laura@wyattswarriors.ca or 289 404 1021

Our big and exciting news is that we are now officially a Federal non profit Organization. 
Wyatt's Warriors Congenital Heart Defects Foundation of Canada is our official name.  The papers were mailed on the anniversary of Wyatt's death, and everything is now complete.  We hope that this will take us to the next level in our ability to raise awateness of Congenital Heart Defects, and funds for the Labatt Family Heart Center at the Hospital For Sick Children.  We would like to welcome Laura and Brian Veloso and Randy Ling to our official team.  We thank each and every one of you for your support over the last few years, we would not be here without you.   We are currently looking for board members, so please get in touch with me at
laura@wyattswarriors.ca if you are interested.

Last but certainly not least, our exciting news of the day is that Wyatt's Warriors and Wyatt are going up in the Donor Hall in SickKids officially (and finally) in November.  This is an honor, and is so very bittersweet.  What a mixed bag of emotions this brings.   What an amazing little boy to accomplish all this.  His name will forever be on the walls of SickKids, to me, that is awesome, and again, would not have been possible without all of you, so thank you again, from the bottom of our hearts, for all the support you have shown over the last few years - to our family, to Wyatt, to Wyatt's Warriors and to all the CHD families and SickKids.  Thank you thank you thank you.  Together we will accomplish great things.

Please remember to come out to our walk, we would love to see you all there.

Laura



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1 Year Ago Today....
posted on 16/05/2010

 

" The child must know that he is a miracle, that since the beginning of the world there hasn't been, and until the end of the world there will not be, another child like him"

-Pau(Pablo) Cassal

Hi everyone,

To be honest, I can't believe I am sitting here writing this... 1 year ago, May 16th, 2009, our brave, amazing, handsome boy, left us. 
There are sights, smells and sounds around me everyday
 that remind me so much of you.  Sometimes I am very greatful for them, sometimes they make it harder.  At the same time, I am afraid of ever losing them too.  Everything that goes away or is gone, makes it seem as though we are farther and farther away from you.  There are days that it still feels like yesterday, because the pain and memories are still so fresh, and then there are days where it seems like forever since we have been able to hold and see him. 
When I just think about it - a year - god, that's a long time to have not seen someone you love so much, someone that was such a huge part of your life, and who changed it forever, and who was just a little boy, and should have been with us so much longer than he was. 
I have found myself the last few months, frequently reflecting on what I was doing a year ago at this time....  and it is unbelievable that just over a year ago, we were preparing to bring Wyatt home, then we were told he was dying, then he fought so hard that we thought and were preparing to bring him home anyways, and I think I speak for all of us who were close to him, that even though we were being told one thing, we always held out hope, that somehow, in typical Wyatt fashion, he was going to prove all those Drs wrong, come home, and do amazing, defying all they said, as he usually did. 
I remember a year ago tonight, Wyatt was baptised, and I was going crazy trying to get his bracelet engraved... something really, that probably seems so silly, yet I had focused on that that day one year ago, and people at the stores probably thought I was insane, because when they said they couldn't engrave it until the next day I burst into tears and said that it might be too late, and of course they had no idea what I was talking about or why, but I guess they felt bad that I was sobbing, and they did it right then for me....  I remember walking into his room that morning and my heart sinking, because I just knew we were definately not getting through the weekend. 
There are so many memories and things I still see so clearly in my mind from that last day, and sometimes I am glad, and sometimes I hate it.  They are things no one should ever have to know, see or go through, yet we did, all of us there with Wyatt, and if  I can say one thing, one positive thing, from that day, is that I know that Wyatt knew he was completely surrounded by love, and knew how loved he was.  Not just by all of us who were there with him that day, but by all of you too, who shared in his life, whether by phone calls, emails, events or these sites, or if you actually had the chance to spend time with him, I know that he knew how many people out there he touched, and loved him.  Some of you, we ourselves have never even met, and that is just one more amazing thing Wyatt did in his too short life.  He brought people together, who never ever would have crossed paths.... he gave us new friends, new family, a new reason for being, and a new way to look at life.  Even though he is no longer here with us, he has left a legacy for us all, and taught us all so much, that I know he will never be forgotten, and never even for a second is he out of our hearts or minds. 
I will never believe there was a reason for his death, at least never a reason good enough for me.... but I do believe there was a reason... No, a million reasons for his life, and I believe he fulfilled every single one of those reasons and purposes and more, more than anyone could have ever imagined.  
Our job now is to make sure that no one ever forgets, and that EVERYONE gets to "know" Wyatt, through us.

I love you Wyatt, we all love you, so much, and we miss you more than words could ever explain. 
We are going to make you proud Wyatt.  Stay close by....

Laura

"Love is not written on paper, for paper can be erased. Nor is it etched on a stone, for a stone can be broken. But it is inscribed on a heart, and there it shall remain forever."




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