Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Danger stranger

Last week while in a pretty safe place with my kids Ty asked me if he could go in the men's bathroom even though it was a big place. He knows I'm fine with him going on his own for the most part since he's not a baby anymore but he also knows to ask in case there's a family one or I'm just dead-set against him going without an adult. I'm a little worried sometimes but I've learned to trust my instincts. Plus we have a code word he can yell and I will come running. Men, consider yourselves warned. 

Well, this particular night Joy needed to go at the same time as Ty, (shocker,) so I told him to come to the women's bathroom right after he washed his hands to find me. A few minutes later he walked in--it was actually more of a saunter--smiling. I asked him what he was so happy about, because, well, it's Ty. This was his response.

"Momma I told that man who tried to talk to me that I was NOT gonna talk to him because I'm not supposed to talk to strangers anyway but really not supposed to in the men's bathroom and FOR SURE NOT HIM SINCE HE LOOKED KINDA SCARY!"

His smile could not have been any bigger. Mission accomplished buddy. Now since we may know the poor man that he just labeled a scary predator I said a quick prayer that he find humor in the situation and move on. I mean if he was just trying to have an innocent conversation with my son he came to the wrong place. Ha! 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Too tired for a title

The week started with a bang. Monday morning on the way to school this one said she didn't feel so good. A few hours later she was so sick she fell asleep on my lap which hasn't happened since...I'm thinking since she was 2. High fever, nauseous, the whole shebang. Strep. Lovely.
As we drove home I wondered how long the other two would be safe, so when I heard my phone ringing and saw that it was the school I knew. I knew the way you just KNOW. Another one bites the dust. Sho'nuff Ty had gotten sick during lunch. 

Let me stop for a sec and just say that there are people who don't mind vomit. They just move on and clean it up and carry on with life. I'm not one of those people. And yet, my kids, all of them actually, vomit when they have strep. And they get strep kinda often.  I'm blessed indeed. 

This one has stayed well, thank goodness. He's my favorite.

Look at him. I mean y'all. LOVE.

Tis the season for swinging and swimming, dance recital prep and of course snow cones. In other words, it's my happy season. I love Spring. Minus thunderstorms. No thanks on those. I hear there are people who love to sleep during them. I'm not one of those people either and I now know that Blue isn't a fan either. At least I've had company watching the weather in the middle of the night. 

Bright side, there's always a bright side. 


Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Ann said what I was thinking

I've had this picture on my phone the last few days and keep re-reading it. So true and honest. Loss and death are gut-wrenching. Both are around me again, it's just not me dealing with them. It's people I love. I pray I can remind them of His faithfulness during their stormy season. 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

We did it. I'm not gonna say "never again," but I hope it's true. Friday was a success but my mind was elsewhere. 

My heart is burdened for two people close to me. It's not my place or right to tell details but it's just burdened and heavy. Lord have mercy. If there's anything I've learned these last few years it's that life is short, and we may never have tomorrow with our children, our parents, our spouse, our friends. Only God knows how long we live here and unless we want to go through life numb, we will know pain. Once we love somebody it's gonna hurt when we lose them. It's gonna hurt when people we love lose people THEY love. It's tempting to try to make myself numb again, but God says there's nothing to fear. Joy will come in the morning. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The one where I'm done with soccer

I'm about done with soccer. It started last week and we go to practice every night, well not every single night but it feels like it. The girls are on the same team and Ty is on a team that practices at the same time but clear across town. 
Yesterday on the way home from soccer practice (at 7:45 pm,) ok wait. 

Stop. 

7:45 in the PM. Almost dark. Past bedtime. In the car with stinky kids. This just ain't right. 

When your kids are normally in/on their way to bed at 7:30 it's just not right to be in the car with ALL THE STUFF hanging over your head that has to be done when you get home at 7:45. Baths, stories, Sheriff Callie episode that makes them all laugh til they cry, brushing teeth, etc. Throwing the night schedule off by hours. Soccer, you're not my favorite. You're messing with my happiness. 

Anyway. 

Last night in the car on the way home (7:45!!!!!!) Ty announced that he finally decided what he wants to be when he grows up. This is how it all went down:

"Mom can you turn the music down? I need to say something."

"Sure." (Braced myself)

"Well. I have decided I want to be a soccer coach AND a baseball coach AND also a PE teacher when I grow up. Man I'm gonna be great at all of those don't you think?" 

Me: "Oh yeah Ty that's a great plan." 
Charlie: "Ty you will be a super coach you're really good at soccer." 

He's had two practices in his life.
Two practices. Zero games.

Joy: "Ty you're a really good baseball player so I think that you will have the best baseball team in the world."

Those who watched the last few baseball seasons know this is questionable.
Now let me say that I was pleasantly surprised at how kind the girls were in their responses. I mean, ok good for all of the positive stuff flying around in the car, right. 

Well.

Charlie: "Mom I finally know what I'm gonna be now." 

I knew this was coming. Nobody better put Baby I mean Charlie in the corner.

"Yep I'm going to be a school teacher when I get big." 

Joy: "Good Charlie you'll be a good teacher!"

Charlie: "No Joy I said a SCHOOL TEACHER not a teacher. There's a big difference. I'm gonna be a SCHOOL TEACHER Joy you got it?"

Joy: "Got it."

Ty: "Yeah Joy you won't get to go where Charlie is teaching. You're too little. And you for sure can't come to where I'm the PE teacher my school isn't for LITTLE KIDS."

Now they've stirred the pot. 
Awakened the giant or whatever. 
I don't blame her for getting tired of hearing it. I was #3 too. I was "too little, too scared," too and we're sick of hearing it YOU OLDER SIBLINGS YOU. 

At this point I usually shut it down since bad things can come out of Joy's little mouth. She gets scrappy when challenged. 

This time, I was just too tired. Half asleep.
Remember what time it is. (7:45!!!!)

Joy: "Oh yeah well one day I'm not gonna invite you to my birthday party!"

Now she's done it. Below the belt, that one. She has two speeds: happy and scrappy. Not much in between. 

Y'all thought I was gonna say she already cusses or something, right? Nope. Not yet. Just the threats that can cut deep into the very souls of the other 2. The dis-invite to the parties of the future. 

Cut back to the scene

Charlie crying, Ty processing

I say ok stop it guys and I make all necessary threats to shut it down. I'm internally cussing soccer because, why , WHY do we need so many practices before the first game when we all know good and well they'll get out there at the first game and just stand there anyway. 

The season doesn't really even get going until about game 3. 

We turn into the driveway and I politely ask, "Joy, what do YOU want to be when you grow up?" 

"A mermaid."

Y'all she is in a whole different league.
Charlie and Ty just sat there stunned. Why hadn't THEY thought of something that cool? It's like Joy can turn the tables faster than they can come up with a response to match hers. Before they could grasp of the absurdity of her comment they found themselves envious of her answer. 

"Wow Joy. Good one."
"Awesome." 

I couldn't make this stuff up.

Friday, March 21, 2014

WIW: One Time Wonder

What I Wore: 

Cardigan: Target (old)
Dress: American Eagle
Belt: thrift store
Leggings: Ross
Boots: Old Gringo (eBay)
Earrings: One Little Momma shop on Etsy

Off to a fun night with friends! 
35, let's do this! 

Friday, March 14, 2014

A smaller table

I read a blog post yesterday that hit the nail on the head and explained so well why I want to downsize. Not just downsize, I want to start completely over. The blog is called One Fit Widow and yesterday the author wrote a list of things she regrets. It's a list that touches everyone, anyone, no matter the season of life. Here's a screen shot of what hit so close to home for me.



Keeping things the same was never an option for me--so many things triggered sadness so I painted everything I didn't get rid of. I kept a ton of Sean's things, mostly preserved for a time when the kids can actually appreciate seeing, holding things that were his. I tried to give them things right away and there was an immediate threat of ALL OF THE SAID THINGS GETTING LOST OR COLORED ON so I did what any parent of little kids would do-put it up on high shelves. There are pictures up of them with Sean and that is what I understand to be healthy for them. As far as for myself and my grief, though, every time I passed certain things in the house it caused flashbacks. There weren't many memories with him in the house because he only lived in it for two weeks...slowly but surely though the flashbacks came. To this day driving into the driveway brings back hard memories, clear as can be, from those weeks following his death. It's just the way my brain works. I can't watch scary previews much less scary movies. I can't get images out of my head easily.

Anyway

Much has been changed, painted, moved, sold, and traded but there are a few pieces of furniture I have that were originally his or from our first few years of marriage. The kitchen table. I repainted the chairs a long time ago. I recover them all the time. Duck cloth from Hobby Lobby and a staple gun=new kitchen chairs. Easy. A few months ago I painted the brown kitchen table white. I thought that would be enough. I sanded it, I repainted it. A different color white. A new stain. Nope. It's full of memories. Dang. It's not that I avoid memories-y'all can imagine how many times a day I see him in an expression or a look from one of the kids! It's just that for me, to go out into the world as a mom and face the future head-on, I need a new start with fewer things, fewer chances to feel less-than. Less than a "full" family, less than a unit. Less than what I once was. It's more than the way things look. I can change all that. Clearly I have already! It's like I've had this internal struggle-my old self vs my future self, and I'm stuck mediating and pacifying them both as long as home stays the same.

I've set our table over and over, (we're talking with plastic decorative placemats and paper napkins, nothing fancy,) and each time I look at our table and think, "This is too big for us. It's too many places, not enough people to fill them." Another reminder. Four placemats, not five. We only need four. We only have four. Four of us. For the rest of our lives, there are only four. We ARE ALL HERE, this is our family. We all pray and hope for more people around our table someday but for now I want to just switch to a smaller table. Less to long for, more to be thankful for. Less pretending everything is the same when so much is not at all the same. Pretending to be okay with the struggle between my pre- and post-loss self, hearing it was normal, etc was fine for a while. Like two years a while. Not anymore. For our family, a new start is exciting and promising, not scary anymore. It's so fun to imagine what life will look like in a few years for us. I don't dread it, I don't wish it would go by quickly, and I don't fear it. Do y'all know what a miracle that is? I know that you do!

Please pray for me as I make decisions and plans. I don't want to be careless, just fearless. Perfect love drives out fear, and God loves me...us...with perfect love. When fear or timidity creeps in it's just my past talking and I'm tired of listening to it.

It's late so I'm sure I stopped making sense a while back. Oops.