Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day

It's memorial day and I'm sitting outside watching my kids have the time of their lives. They swim, get out to eat, swim again, dry off, eat again, switch swimsuits, swim, dry off and eat again approximately 32 times a day.

And I'm thankful they can. I'm thankful for blue cheese burgers and Cheetos for lunch. And I'm really thankful for bread n butter pickles.

I'm thankful for frivolous things today and it feels great. Not just thankful for hope and strength and a new day that brings me closer to eternity with Jesus-I've been thankful for those things the last few months and not much else honestly. "Just get me through Lord," I've prayed.

Nope, not today. I'm thankful for lots of little stuff, little mindless stuff. Like pickles and swimming pools. When I typed that it said 'poops' so I have another thing to be thankful for-no swimming poops yet. It's kinda life-changing to be done with swim diapers. Bank account changing for sure.


I'm thankful for every soldier who gives up their life so I can be here thinking about frivolous things. And this year my heart aches for people whose soldier didn't come home. Sometimes when I meet people and tell them I'm a widow they ask if he was in the military. (He was not,) but I always think about the wives and husbands whose answer is yes. I fear I'll tackle them with hugs now when I meet them. Oh Lord have mercy. Today is a day to lift them up in prayer and shower people with hugs. To say thank you and God bless you.

Death has changed me. It's changed me in a way nothing ever had before. I can't watch a movie or even read a book about someone dying without sobbing. My heart has felt that despair so I don't want anyone else to feel it. I feel a compassion I've never felt before and there's no going back. No turning this off. Maybe I'll be a sap the rest of my life, which is okay. Like the kind of girl who cries at Hallmark commercials, the girl I used to make fun of. Yes, yes I'm that girl now. And that's okay. I'm here. I'm still fighting. I'm given this life to live and these kids to raise. This family to share it with. This dog to complain about. Oh, and two kittens to add to the mix in the next week or two.



Dancing mixed into the mourning?


I'm off to eat more pickles.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Her mother's daughter

She eats the icing. Only the icing. That a girl. Y'all have a fun weekend!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Summer is looking good to me

Being outside is my favorite thing. I'm not a homebody so I usually venture out a good bit of the day and when I come home I'd prefer to stay outside. Maybe I'm ruining my kids for quiet indoor time but I'll take the consequences. Out here you can see what God has done and you have more hope for what He's gonna do.

We celebrated Joy's birthday today outside. The kids had a great time playing with cousins. We talked about the summer and what's ahead. I'm ready.

Give me a paintbrush, a Popsicle, or a ball game and I'm happy. And yeah that goes for my kids too.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The good, bad, ugly, and update

The good

I'm nearing the end of my massive paint projects around the house.

So far I like everything I've done.

I only have one Type-A personality living in my house who is bothered by the chaos resulting from my projects.

He is five years old.

There is almost always a Ranger game on at night once the kids are in bed.

We have met with a new counselor a few times and all of us really like her.

She only charges a small fee when you miss an appointment because it never occurred to you that you had counseling on Monday at 3:00.

The bad

In order to finish my biggest painting project to date I'll have to conquer my fear of removing cabinet doors.

I don't know how to remove cabinet doors.

I also don't know how to properly repaint cabinets at all.

Any time I don't know how to do something I ask for help.

My first person to ask for help about something like this isn't here.

And he's not gonna be here.

Suddenly painting cabinets takes on a life of its own.

Suddenly it's a symbol of what I have ahead of me.

Something I want to hand off to someone else but I know only I can do it.

And I'm exhausted.

The ugly

My kids are not trusting me to come home when I leave.

After almost six months I thought this part would be better and it's worse.

I miss him. We all miss him. How do you move through a life you shared with someone and make sense of things when they aren't here anymore?

The update

I'm mad and sad and frustrated and tired and struggling. When I get ready to tackle a project it intensifies all of these things but I can't stop doing projects. When I focus on something in front of me I put my energy into it so that my mind can't wander. As I paint I focus on the good that will come from what I'm doing. The beauty. The change that I can make happen in a matter of minutes. I listen to music sometimes and other times I enjoy the quiet. I always pray. I ask God to show me the good things that He will bring from this mess. I wait for Him to speak. Then I look at what I'm capable of. I don't make perfect things. Far from it. I just help things have a new life. And it feels good to do that since we are kind of doing the same thing now. I love the promises that God has given me for that very thing-a new life. One where I can sit in the midst of the greatest heartache I have ever or hopefully will ever know and feel like I can go on. There is a life here that will pale in comparison to the life lived with Him one day. I can live through a lot more knowing that this isn't all there is. There is so much more to live for, not even just for my kids. There are people living in this same heartache who can't breathe and don't even want to anymore. They feel the same emotions I feel but there is a huge void--hope--that is missing. I'm not sure how I'll manage to tell them all about Jesus but I know that God doesn't need me to figure that out. He will show me.

So, there you have it-the good, bad, ugly, and the update. Thank y'all for praying :)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day Recap

Amen and Amen.

(pic taken by sister-in-law during our nap)

Saturday, May 12, 2012

The hobby that keeps me going

Painting old things new colors. Very simple. My favorite thing to do with any spare time. The old coffee table that once was black-now a fun bright color that makes me think seriously about moving to a tropical island.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sunday, May 6, 2012


Ty just fell asleep beside me. I'm relieved since he's been vomiting for the last few hours and he seems to be improving. I don't know where I'd be without the help of my parents. It took all three of us to get the girls to bed while trying to help Ty. Being sick scares him so badly. It scares all kids I'm sure but he seems to be so anxious about it that I feel just awful for him. I hate that his daddy, the one he always preferred, isn't here to help him. I wonder if Ty thinks this too. He used to say that all the time right at first but it's tapered off. I don't know what breaks my heart more-that he either thinks it but doesn't say so or that he's forgotten how much he needed his daddy. Yeah, both are awful.

This morning at church was rough. The pastor started a new series about marriage and though I knew it was coming it was still excruciating. It was a great sermon and I was able to separate myself from the hard parts until the end. That's when he told the husbands in the room to stand and take a vow to lead their wives. To pray over them and protect them. Once I let my guard down to pray the tears started flowing.

They didn't stop. I've found that by opening my heart to the Lord I can feel the intensity of my emotions and while it's of course good to let the real emotions out today was just too much. The combination of putting it all out there, the stress of this last week, plus the sadness I felt during the prayer paralyzed me. I couldn't leave, I couldn't move. I sat there, right beside a good friend who I knew was mortified this was happening, and I just sobbed. I tried to stay quiet, which we all know is impossible when you're trying to do it. Like people at church would care, right? Anyway.

I listened to the words the men were saying to their wives and thought, "You left. You did all of these things and more but where are you now? Our kids are in shambles every time I leave the house. They wake up asking for me to make sure I haven't left. The fear in them has grown, not gone away. This is crunch time and you left me. You served me, led me, gave me security, and you gave us your greatest commitment. But you left. And I'm alone. I'm not a wife anymore. I'm a mom left here with a job created for two people. My heart hurts and you're not here to comfort me. I'm not mad at you I'm just so overwhelmed with what you left. I need help."

My friend instantly hugged me when the prayer was over and she said, "I know that must have been terribly hard for you and I prayed for you the whole way through it. You survived it Mary."

I was relieved right away, though I still couldn't stop crying. Not only did she comfort me right away she invited me and the kids to go with her to lunch. She and her husband laughed with the kids and helped give me time to recover. Then the day got busy and I was thankful for the distractions.

But all day deep down I have been thinking about the prayer. What cut so deep this morning has actually been comforting throughout the day. Mainly because Sean did those things. He knew who God is and was sure of his role in our house. He did pray over me and encourage me, leading me to a place of safety. He served me and did all that I ever needed so the loss is profound.

Just now as I teared up again thinking about it, a wonderful thing happened. In a way only God could show me I saw the light at the end of the tunnel. I saw Jesus, standing guard over me just as Sean used to. Offering Himself. Offering help.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


May. How did it get to be May? How is only just May? Another month, another marker for how long we have survived. In some ways it feels like it can't possibly be May and in others it seems like its taken forever to get here. I know this-we are loving the sun around here. Loving the new flowers, new spirit of summer right around the corner. Thankful for the end of winter. I'm still entertaining the thought of moving somewhere that offers both sunshine and sand on a daily basis.

We are having a fun week, full of family and friends. Joy's birthday is this week and you'd think Tinkerbell herself is the one turning 3. Man does that girl love Tinkerbell.

I'm taking Max to the vet in the morning and since this is his first visit to this vet it could be hairy. I'll give you an update if it warrants your time.

Odds are it will.