Apr 29, 2014

Needing To Break

One of the many reasons why my husband is so good for me is he balances the crazy.
I come to him with ridiculous ideas and he never tells me "No" flat out.
Most times he just redirects my crazy into something productive.
Some thing safer than my original version. 

Grief has been doing a number on me. 

Most days I don't have any tears, 
until I feel them rolling down my face.

Some mornings I want to eat a box of Twinkies for breakfast, 
only to clock five miles on the treadmill in the afternoon.

Screaming, crying, writing, eating and drinking all in excess haven't eased any part of my broken heart.

So I told The Hero last week that I wanted to start breaking things.
I wanted to watch glass hit and shatter and come apart.
Seeing beautifully decorated tables in magazines, leaves me wondering what all that pottery would look like broken on the floor. 

I told him that perhaps watching something else coming undone would help me feel.
Feel what I wasn't sure.
But I told him I needed to break.

In his perfectly, amazing way he came home a few days later with a giant bag of whole pecans.
"It's not plates or dishes, but I thought this would help."
I laughed.

On nights where I struggle most, I release my grip on doing dinner dishes,
grab my bag and bowl and head out to the porch.

A few nights ago, The Hero found me and asked if cracking pecans was any bit of a release for me.

I nodded. 

And then suggested he go by me my own pecan tree.

Apr 20, 2014

Being Drug Into Spring

It appears that Oklahoma has officially entered into spring.

Everything is changing colors.
The weatherman reports warmer temperatures are here to stay.
People are out walking their dogs, playing in the parks and buzzing with the hype of impending summer.

We are spending more time outside with soccer and gardening.
The thrill of watching things change and become green is still thrilling to the kids.
Promises of berries and jam, swimming and fun are all they talk about these days.
They have even braved getting in the swimming pool a couple of times already.

I want so badly to replicate their excitement. 
To get lost in the anticipation that comes with changing seasons.

I make myself spend time in the garden every day.
Some days, I just meander through, watering plants and pulling weeds.
Other days, I spend hours planting, pruning, working to utter exhaustion. 
Just so that I can be able to sleep.

But as much as I try, I just cannot bring myself to fully embrace the season change.
The last season you saw was the bitter cold of winter. 
And there is so much of my heart that is frozen from the ache of missing you.
I suppose that I deep down fear that welcoming spring, will mean I forget all about the last winter you lived. 

Apr 11, 2014

Big 6!

Often, when we are so wrapped up in grief, things slip past us. The concept of time can slap us right in the face and we are scrambling to put things together for an event or holiday. 
Worse, at times, we just wish the event/holiday/social gathering/appearance
would altogether disappear.
While I adore my baby boy so very much, I would be lying if I told you I had been looking forward to preparing for his sixth birthday party. 
Truth: I was full on dreading it. 
And with so many other things falling apart, the day crept up on me faster than I wanted to admit. 

The planning was drowning to me:


Trying to laugh.
Cleaning up.
Deciding where to have it.

Having to pick an outfit for myself that wasn't sweats and my brother's brown hoodie.


For someone who is still grieving a party with screaming toddlers, balloons and party favors 
was my personal version of hell.

Little Man wasn't the most help either. 
On days I felt like I was in a frame of mind to plan, I would ask him what he wanted to do for his birthday.

His answers would range from taking his entire kindergarten class on a play date (Uh, NO!!!!),

to The Hero and I buying him a b.b. gun (UH, DOUBLE NO)

to all of us going to Disney World (Not in the budget).

He also refused to settle on a theme.

He would tell me "Mom, you know I like it all."

"And minions."
"Lots of minions."

With not much else to go off of and no real energy to peruse Pinterest looking for ways to entertain six year olds, I buckled under the pressure.

The invitations were by Facebook invite only.

Family and a few of our dearest friends whose children I knew I could socially tolerate.

Decorations were a hodge podge of all of his favorites.

Cupcakes were of the store-bought variety.

We topped off the whole cupcake/punch affair with a candy-crammed pinata, sang Happy Birthday and celebrated our newly turned six year old. 

We even made it, just the four of us out for dinner to the Ethiopian restaurant in our area for an extra dosing of celebrating. 

All of it was beautiful and special and he felt on top of the world. 
And for one small glimmer of an afternoon, life felt....well, I would like to say normal, but I hate that word.


I know that's not a real word. 

I made it up. 

But grieving through my brother's death has left most of my breaths like they are unable
 to be let loosed from my chest. 

And for one small, Sunday afternoon surrounded by our family and friends, I felt
covered in enough love to let out a breath and not immediately feel the need to fall apart. 

Which allowed me to embrace and enjoy this smile:

Happy Super Six to my favorite Dinosaur! And to all of those we know and love us who made the day extra special and who didn't even notice that the party was not Pinterest worthy, but was worthy for nothing more than the company. 

Apr 9, 2014

Seeing You

I saw you yesterday at the grocery store. It caught me by surprise at first, to see you standing there, but as I approached you from behind, I saw traces of your hair and your stance. I held my breath and rationalized to myself that it was not, in fact, you, but a person who faintly resembled you. It was my heart that wanted it so desperately to be you.

This is the status of my life these days.

Trucks that look similar to yours that pass me on the street, late-twenties boys who stand near me pumping gas; these things make me pause to doubt.

As I past this person with my shopping cart, I couldn't help but turn over my shoulder to make sure that it wasn't you. Do you think it's silly that I was actuly saddened that it wasn't you? Double check that it isn't indeed you. I may never again look at my phone and not wonder if it is you calling to chat or hear the "ding" of a text message and hope that it is you sending me a joke.

My child mentioned you at dinner a few nights ago. You know, that child of mine who loved you so. The one who climbed in your lap when you would visit and demand every bit of your attention? He said it so sweetly and innocently, I almost didn't notice. He could have asked me for more bread. But when The Hero reached for my hand, I knew the small one had said something about you. I asked him to repeat it. Slow. Soft.

"I miss Uncle Guy."

There were no tears in his eyes. No softened words. Just forward and truthful; like kids do.

Tonight the little one and I made dinner, filled our plates and was five minutes into watching The Voice. We were discussing hair styles and singing when he said "Mommy, I guess it's ok that Uncle Guy is in Heaven. I have two uncles and it doesn't matter that he is in Heaven. He is still my uncle."

I tried to hard not to let him see me cry. But my kids are use to me disappearing into the kitchen these days.
I guess I'm not the only one whose been missing you lately. I suppose the hole that you left in my life and in my heart was not only a hole for me, but for others too. I suppose I've just been so awash with my own grief and hurt looking for you that I hadn't much noticed. But it appears that we all are looking for you.