Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Things

I'm just downright frustrated.
And since I've written 4 posts since last week,
and failed to post any of them.
I am just going to write and this
WILL be put up,
no matter what gibberish
comes pouring out of my head/heart.

I physically ache.
My heart hurts,
my arms hurt
and I am filled with this mixture of an emotion
somewhere between sheer sadness
and just generally being pissed off.

Besides the fact that my heartstrings
are being tugged and stretched out
somewhere between here and heaven,
this whole last year has just left me, well,
tired.
My soul and entire being is just so sick and tired of it all.
And while I want to lash out and cry and scream
that this is all so wrong.
It doesn't change any of it.

I guess there were events that happened this last week
which helped push me to this point.
And there were a lot of them, many of which I refuse to even give another thought.
While I have the ability to put things in perspective,
we all have those moments where something stupid happens
yet we freak out...
Because its just ONE MORE THING.
In dealing with change and loss and dying,
these "things" that happen are either totally ignored
or a total tragedy.
Regardless, my last week or so has been filled with these "things".
And you could say on Sunday I finally freaked out.

It started with our big garage door motor breaking. Then it decided to rain and snow all week, and I'm seriously questioning our move back to the Midwest solely based on the weather that is nearly driving me insane.
But when I walked downstairs to pack up some stuff I sold online (yes, I am resorting to selling my life away in bits and pieces on EBay) I found the big surprise.

As I reached down
something dripped on my hand...
confused,
I looked up.
A hole.
In the ceiling, where part had caved down
and water was dripping out.
You can imagine what I said out loud.
This resulted from a leak underneath our shower which dripped down to the room downstairs.

Trying to overcome this week,
we went to church on Sunday.
On the way there, the check engine light came on in the Audi
for the 4th time...
in less than a month.
Enough said about that...
When we arrived, we were a little late
so we were seated behind a woman with a brand new baby.

And as we listened to the teaching on suffering, and crying out to God,
and lamenting
I was being tortured as I tried not to stare at this
display of affection between a mother and child...
the kind that I longed to give Will.
And it just sucked.
Big time.

Arriving home,
the dam broke.
And I cried, screamed...
pounded my fists on the counter
in sheer frustration.
Because I'm realizing,
that this just doesn't ever
get "better"
or easier...
It is something I learn to live with.

I feel as though I have been cut off from the world
I long for so many things...
a baby, a job, more fun things with friends to distract myself with.
And with the warm weather
and summer approaching with
what would have been his first birthday...
I find myself getting anxious,
and panicky.
My prayers need to be answered,
I need to find a job or something
because if I sit here alone all summer,
I will completely freak out.

And while I have felt slightly guilty
or even crazy about this,
Rob Bell spoke about it on Sunday:
For me, God has been distant.
I don't know why I have had to walk
in the dark for so long.
I fumble along, trying not to give up.
And just when a small ray of hope appears,
it is quickly blocked or goes out.
And I
quite frankly,
am at my wit's end.

But its not in me to give up.
I'm way too stubborn.
Way too German.
But I am realizing that I am now at a point
where I just don't know what to do anymore...
except keep trudging along.

But I am sick of trudging,
I want to run.
I want to write about how things are going great,
how we are making strides.
I want to reach that plateau where instead of writing this blog for therapy...
for a way to get all the hurt out...
Instead, I write for fun.

*But I must admit, after sitting here getting all this out and reading it back over. I do feel better...and I was never one to shy away from the ugly truth, and I guess I shouldn't feel bad about writing depressing blogs. This is just the reality of it all. A few good days and moments mixed in with the more frequent not-so-good.

Monday, March 23, 2009

One year...

Exactly one year ago today...
it was Easter Sunday
we pulled up in our truck with
every earthly belonging we have...
excited out of our minds.

There was even snow on the ground
(thankfully none today)
and I cannot even begin to describe
how happy we were.

I really wish someone would have taken a picture.
That is on my wish list actually,
one of these
because the only things I really value any more
are people, memories, and the
pictures I have of those things.
So a new camera is needed badly.

I do have a picture of us sitting at Taco Bell,
in some crap hole town...
maybe New Mexico?
No.
It was Arizona.
We were thrilled to drive over the state line.

And we were there with some great friends.
(I would post the picture, but need approval!)
I taught with her, and their twin sons
were my students in 2nd grade.
They had left for spring break, and we followed
each other out of SoCal.
How cool is that?

The same family,
visiting us when Will was born.
My only friends to meet him before he died.

Life is strange sometimes.
Alright.
Much of the time.

I used to count back through time according
to Tim's deployment cycles.
Glad that is over.
(I was right about the meeting this weekend, it was a total waste of his time. Nothing big worth noting, just trying to get him into the reserves)
Now,
we'll count time in a different way.
Because already our life out there
seems like a lifetime ago.

So starting today,
its kind of like our New Years.
A clean slate.
What will our 2nd year in MI bring?

Ha.
Do I really want to ask?
(insert nervous laugh here)
Whatever it is,
I trust Him.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Lansing

I'm sitting in a Panera Bread in Lansing...
watching it snow.
Yes, snow.
What is even more disturbing
is that I just dropped Tim
off at the Marine Corps offices
for some meeting they required him to be at...
yet, they aren't saying why.

At this point?
If they were to tell him he was back in
I don't know if I would feel anything.
Not much surprises me anymore,
and I am done trying to plan or imagine
what my life may or may not turn out to be.
And this isn't necessarily a bad thing,
I am relinquishing control.
What is that line?
If you want to make God laugh....just tell him your plans.

2008
was a year that I could have never seen coming.
Every single thing that I dreamed of happening,
didn't.
Instead,
my worst nightmare, one that I have never imagined...happened instead.
And I am still here to talk about it.
Somehow, we manage to continue on...
even though those around us,
seem to freak out over much smaller things.
I just love perspective.

It was yesterday, when some high schooler
announced to the entire class,
"You are like the most chill, laid back teacher I have ever had."
Wow, hearing that kind of scared me.
Now I realize that I must be doing something wrong,
that I am not as effective as I once was.
I guess after knowing what Tim did in Iraq,
knowing that bullets whizzed by his head,
seeing a woman get run down and murdered in front of us,
and watching helplessly as our son died in our arms...
you could say not much seriously fazes me anymore.
Not even high schoolers whipping random things at a kid sleeping,
passing notes telling each other to have "everyone raise your hand at 11:00"
(they somehow thought this was the funniest thing ever, half expecting me to freak out or something)
Nope.
I didn't yell or do anything they thought I would.
Instead, I did something even worse.
I laughed.

Because it is funny.
I see myself 10 years ago.
Ready to take over the world,
having fun,
loving life.
And since I know how things can turn out.
I'm not going to be the one to rain on their parade...they were doing typical, harmless teenage things...
Soon enough,
they will be all grown up
in the rat race with the rest of us.
For those seniors,
these last 2 months may be the ones they look back on for the rest of their lives.

For me?
I have learned to embrace every chapter.
It is a huge struggle.
But being content
is possibly the only thing that I might be able to control here.
The way I view things,
has the ability
to either free me
or break me.
And after it all.
I refuse to end up a broken person.
Re-moulded?
Yes.
The new and improved model.
Shattered?
No.
Then all of this would be useless.

There will always be bad days,
but I am learning to be grateful for all
of the perspective God has placed along my path...
even the most painful kind.

So,
we'll see what Tim says.
I have a feeling it will be stupid,
he'll say it was a waste of time...
Shocker.
That is the military for you.
A love-hate relationship.

Isn't that the case with just about everything though?
This week,
I hated working every single day in a different school.
But I will love the paycheck when it comes.
And as I sit here, I absolutely hate the fact 
that it is snowing...
But when the sun finally comes out...

I will absolutely love it,
just that much more.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Baby steps


It blows my mind to think that 8 months have passed.
Today,
when its nearly a year since we arrived here
and 70 degrees outside
reminding me of last summer,
it brings jumbled emotions to the surface.
There are still a million "what ifs"
which lead to even more "what would it be like now" scenerios...
I just have to accept that this is still really hard.
And allow myself to miss him
and not pretend like my arms don't ache to hold him.
Because they do...
my body still physically aches for him.
But, we've still come a long way since last summer.
And each day is a step towards something new,
even though I'm clueless today as to what that might be.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Today was one of those days when you don't see it coming.
Last night, I stopped eating at 7:00 to fast for my blood work this morning. I couldn't find any sub jobs (which I am beyond despising at this point) and went to bed with a plan in place for today.
When the alarm went off at 6:30, I was going to:
go get my blood work done
clean up the house
list things on eBay
and generally rest because I am still sick and without much of a voice

I turned on the laptop in bed
and checked my email.
Then I noticed,
I had a sub job at 8:15.
Wait.
What???

My first reaction?
I thought Tim had accepted a job online for me because I have been so sick lately, I haven't worked much. And I really need to....but I don't need any extra guilt about me not making the kind of money I did out in Cali.
He was innocent though.

I let it sink in.
Then I got really frustrated.
And I kind of wanted to just freak out,
because it was all so stupid
I just couldn't take it anymore.
The teacher didn't leave an email,
and no voicemail.
She just plugged me into the system at 5:30 am.
And it was too late to cancel the job,
and besides,
that would have made me look like a complete flake to that school.
The very school I would love to work at.

So I scrambled and pouted...
and made my way over to the school.
And on the way there,
I cried and wondered
Just how I got here...

And I told the secretaries what had happened.
In the nicest way,
but come on.
If I hadn't seen that online,
or hadn't shown up.
They wouldn't have been in a bad position.

But by this happening,
I found out something.
A teacher I was talking to is going to live abroad next year.
And it taking a leave of absence.
Hmmm.
An opportunity perhaps.
But unsure of what to do exactly.
Any advice?

So tonight,
fasting #2.
And tomorrow,
I'm hoping for only pleasant surprises please.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

community

I've been taking shots of Theraflu cold relief like its...
actually going to heal me.
The days since Thursday have gone quickly
with subbing,
a broken Audi,
a Tastefully Simple party,
and getting even more sick
somewhere in the mix.

The miscarriage?
I am thanking God that it was early.
Seriously.
I don't want to dwell on another loss,
but rather be grateful that it didn't drag on.
Even though Tim's reply Thursday night was...
when is this nightmare going to end?
I feel sorry for him as he works his butt off to keep us afloat and then worries about me in any spare moment he may have.
His birthday is Friday,
and all I can think about is last year.
We met up with friends after school for dinner,
I was pregnant,
we were moving in just about 2 weeks.
And we were really happy.
I remember that night with our friends well.

This year, I'm unsure of what to do exactly.
He deserves the world and then some.
Just as he worries about me,
I am concerned with the way people treat him on the phone at work.
He is the hardest worker I have ever known...
even if that means putting aside what has happened and cold calling strangers in an attempt to get them to see that he is trying to help them in this time of financial uncertainty.
People say the the meanest, rudest things to him.
What ever happened to being polite?
I just hate that he has to endure it.
It is hard enough to find the strength to get out of bed most days,
let alone to face that.
Another one of my prayers that still hangs somewhere between here and heaven...
just waiting to be answered in one way or another.

We went to the high risk doctor yesterday.
Another area of our life that is not black and white,
but varying shades of gray.
There is nothing evident,
but we have proof that is can happen for us: Will.
What happened with him is still unknown,
but I know we have to keep having faith and trust.
We are just struggling with the strength we need to keep brushing ourselves off.
Last week felt like ripping a scab off a cut that wasn't close to being healed.
And it hurt.

In church on Sunday, across the front board said...
"Who can heal us?"
Well, that we all know.
But what I have been questioning, 
is how exactly?
And then it came:
we are healed through God but he uses people....
community.
We are healed through community.
And that has made this last year so much harder.
We hadn't established a community here yet.

Last fall, when we had our loss in Sept.
The people I worked with, the kids, the parents...
were simply wonderful.
And it was through them,
that I as able to pick myself up and move forward.
I was healed because of people and the compassion they showed.
And now?
I wish I still had that daily contact,
that job to do.
But this blog and being by family again,
has helped fill a piece of that void which was left when we moved.
I cannot express how humbling it has been to read the comments and emails...
and to just know,
that people are still there to provide that support.
And I am grateful beyond words.

So now?
After everything and a little research,
I am officially considered high-risk.
There are orders for some blood work,
but in the meantime I am supposed to take an extra folic acid supplement and baby aspirin along with my prenatal vitamin.
But I am trying to focus my attention away from all the "what-ifs" and "why's"
because it is hard not to take it personal when 
the news is plastered with Octomom drama and other nonsense.

Because the last few days I haven't been able to get something out of my head.
After we handed Will off to the nurse for the last time,
Tim wheeled me through the NICU to my room...
as we passed by the room he was in,
his little empty bed,
still lit up,
stared back at me.
Reality that he was no longer there.
And that memory,
is poignant.
Because as parents,
we loved him so much...
that we would rather let him go
than have him stay and suffer in this life.
Even if it meant suffering for the rest of ours...
And part of me prays that maybe, 
there is some other mom out there...
who knows she can't provide her child with the variety of things they may need.
And that she loves her child enough,
to let them go.
Because I know there are so many couples out there,
who would do anything to have a baby.
And while we have begun to consider adoption,
that is one roller coaster I don't have the courage to jump on just yet.

That same nurse we handed Will to... told me something the other day.
It was about the blankets all of you graciously donated money for in honor of Will.
She said they have used a couple,
and my heart sank knowing that some other parent is now on this journey...
but she also said that they were thankful and the blankets have been a comfort.
So thank you,
to everyone
who helped us make that possible.
To provide a tiny bit of comfort
in such a dark time.

I don't know about how that makes anyone else feel,
but I feel better when I'm able to do things for others.
And I want to be able to do more.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

This isn't what I wanted to write about today.

I heard something funny from a friend out in CA.
And last night, I put that strange knowledge to work.
She had said that if you have a bad cough and can't sleep, smear Vicks vapor rub on the bottom of your feet and put socks on before going to bed.
Well, after coughing up a lung, I gave in and decided it was worth a shot.
It worked.
I didn't cough the rest of the night.
Now that?
Is weird.

Today, I was hoping would be different.
I was hoping to write a good blog.
Instead, I woke up in a pool of blood that completely freaked out my Marine husband.
So instead of writing that I am pregnant,
I was....but am presumably not anymore.
I am writing instead about more bad news: a miscarriage.
It was still real early,
but not too early to get a positive test last week.
Not to early to have hope that things were going to turn around.

Now?
My head is full of lots of random, mixed-up thoughts.
All of which, I am trying to push out of my head because none of them are things that I want to be thinking. None of them are supposed to be part of a thought process from someone who has been to hell, walked through for some time, and was finally making her way back. Today's event does not help that journey.

So I just ask for prayers. Because now, I really don't know what to say to God today. And I don't know what to pray for anymore. And to me...it seems that whatever I do pray for, well, it just doesn't happen.
Like when I saw that pink line last week?
I prayed that things would just be good, that they would end good...
And now I wish that it just would have stayed negative...
because you can't lose something you never had.
I'm sick of thinking that something good is going to happen and then having it taken away.
Like holding Will and then God taking him,
and holding that freaking stick in my hand and feeling my heart beat again...
only to have it broken this morning.
Why?

When we had the first miscarriage, I still remember what we did that day.
Tim and I drove down the CA coast...
we went and walked around at some outdoor shops and I got some sunglasses (to try and make me feel better) and then we went and test drove a BMW (to make him feel better)...
But we were together, in the warm sunshine...
And this time?
Tim reluctantly left for work, and I'm just sitting alone here telling myself out loud that things...
Will get better soon...they have to.

So friends, any prayers would be so greatly appreciated...I just can't do it for myself right now. I don't know what to say anymore.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Damage Control

I'm home sick today...
the second time in less than a month, having caught some seriously nasty bug.
The other cold was nearly gone, and so my guard must have been down when I went to a friends house on Saturday.
A bunch of sorority girls from GVSU got together.....
Many of which, I have not seen since I was in college.
But they all brought their kids.
Complete with runny noses and coughs.

Kid germs are dangerous.
And the doctors all warned we would be more prone to getting sick with the grieving process.
So here I am.

It was good to see everyone.
But it was hard.
Especially when there was a little girl, just two weeks or so older than what Will would be today.

It broke my heart and then some.
And then a lot of the girls didn't know what had happened...
even worse to sit there and listen to what I already knew but they didn't.
So my favorite conversation was topic:
Pregnancy and blah blah blah.
So it was a rough morning, and one that I didn't really see coming.
It was the first time I have allowed myself to be around babies since July,
and now I know why.

Still not to that point yet.
I wish there was some universal symbol for grieving.
A sign that would point out to the rest of the world just where we are in this journey, so at times when we need it most a little sympathy and empathy would be put forth.
In church, I learned that in the Jewish religion back in the day, a grieving family member would wear an outer layer of torn clothes.

Hmmm,
torn, huh?
Seems to make sense to me.
And if you are as intrigued as I was, you can read a little more here.

All I'm saying is that some knowledge on other's people's part would be making this whole situation so much easier. 
Because many times?
Its unnecessarily painful.
Just like Saturday.
You could say a symbol of torn clothes would be like the equivalent of doing "damage control" in our house.

What am I talking about?
Damage control is when you take necessary steps in communicating or thinking ahead before something actually happens, and then taking action to prevent that little something from actually taking place.

So after I left and called Tim crying telling him what happened...
I did my own damage control.
I went to Nordstroms Rack and found a really cute top.
And I did what any girl would do when her husband tells her they can't spend money.
I bought it anyways:)