Different illnesses have taken over our house the last week or so, and I think we're finally on the mend. I'm thankful since I was beginning to think that our new normal would always consist of sleepless nights and at least one kid hanging on my leg all day long. Sometimes more than one. My patience was low, my confidence in my ability to be a parent, you name it, it was a struggle. Then meds kicked in and we all got a few good nights of sleep.
Like magic, I tell you. Sleep is magic. It may be a genetic requirement for at least 10 hours a night and all three of my kids have it, just like their momma. Take away our sleep and the sky will fall. And it will fall fast. You'd think we were all emotionally disturbed if you saw us fumbling around trying to function.
I'm not sure how big or new of news this is to most of you. Like my hair, not much has changed in the last, um 32 years. Old friends remember that I'd always be the first one asleep at parties and often following a late night I'd bottom out and call my mom to come get me. I just wanted to sleep, what can I say?
Did you know that mice can climb walls and get cheese from a mouse trap without getting caught? Are we new to this information? Apparently we have a skilled little guy living in our garage. Max goes nuts every time he is in the garage and there are signs of mouse shenanigans so I know he's in there. My dad caught one about a week ago and we thought our bird seed would be safe but after one day of calm there was another new hole in the bird seed. Last night Dad set a trap and moved it up on top of the refrigerator in the garage so the kids wouldn't get into it, then forgot about it and went to bed. This morning, the cheese was gone and the trap was still set. Apparently we have a Jason Bourne mouse. To sum up our pets at this point we have a mouse who is smarter than our ten year-old dog.
Speaking of Max, lots of you have asked how he's doing since losing Sean and I'm sad to say that he's as anxious as ever. He doesn't seem worse as far as anxiety when I leave him goes but he has upped his bravery to steal food right in front of me. He has always seen me as his big sister instead of his master, so I knew it might be a rough transition for him. He has to take me seriously now, so he's trying to get away with all he can before surrendering. In the last two weeks he's eaten a bar of soap, two whole, (plus the plastic,) loaves of bread, a big ball of packing tape and a new jar of Valentine candy corn.
Y'all, I could not make this stuff up.
I catch myself sending Sean pictures of what he's done, since I used to do this all the time when Sean was at work. Like, "Look what YOUR dog just did!" It makes me sad when I realize I can't send him anything. It was such a normal thing, just sending him texts and pictures when something funny happened. Each time it hits me that he's not on the other side of his phone a wave washes over me. He was so excited to get pictures of the kids when he was away! He'd say it helped with him wanting to just turn around and come home. He hated missing what the kids were doing, what they were learning. And now he's missing so much. When I think of all he will miss in the future I can't stop crying. Lord be near.
I've slowly thought through things that I want to do for the kids so that they have their Daddy as visible as possible around our house. There's a mixture of sadness and peace in my heart about it, since I know that every time I pass a picture I'll miss him. The peace comes from knowing they will know all about him every day of their lives. They'll know how much he loved being their dad and how much delight he felt in everything they did. They'll see the humor he shared with everybody he knew. They will know the depth of his love for his family and the depth of his love for me. I have cards that he's given me over the years that now will always represent who he was as a husband. He was a good man, full of funny ideas and all-encompassing hugs. They will never wonder about him if I can help it. They will know.
"I look up to the mountains; does my strength come from mountains? No, my strength comes from God, who made the heaven, and earth, and mountains. He won't let you stumble, your Guardian God won't fall asleep. Not on your life! Israel's Guardian will never doze or sleep. God's your Guardian, right at your side to protect you. Shielding you from sunstroke, sheltering you from moonstroke. God guards you from every evil, he guards your very life. He guards you when you leave and when you return, he guards you now, he guards you always."