Friday, January 31, 2014

Snow Day!

Spare me the comments about the chaos in Georgia when we get flurries. What's more important than our roads not being prepared? Our closets! Aubrey Jo and I seriously need some winter updating in our closets. But that didn't slow us down.. we threw on a couple layers and went outside to take advantage.


When we woke up, the ground was white. I immediately threw on Aubrey Jo's jacket and boots and we ran outside. Umm, yeah, these girls were NOT prepared for that. We snapped a quick photo and ran back inside to the heater. After breakfast though, we decided to give it another go. Mama still wasn't in love but Priss and the dogs were in HEAVEN!


Friday, January 24, 2014

Five on Friday

If you know me, you know this pattern makes my heart go pitter patter. I pretty much buy everything I see. I'm a grandma. I got a couple pieces from this set for Christmas & I am thinking I may just ask for the rest of it for my birthday. Since my mom said she is NOT getting me botox. So rude...

Last week, I tweeted about how hard 3 has been. I was having a really rough parenting day. Or week. That night, I prayed that God would just simply help me recognize and appreciate the good, to be more present in the good moments with my daughter and not carry the difficult ones with me. I know we all have difficult moments as parents, and I know that won't change, so I simply asked to be more open to the really great moments that we have. I love prayers that are answered immediately. (some may argue I should pray more for patience haha) The next morning, Aubrey Jo woke up 30 minutes before my alarm and was in the most sweet, cuddly mood. I immediate stopped and thanked Him for the extra 30 minutes to simply lay with her, cuddling, giggling and enjoying her. The next morning? Same thing- exactly 30 minutes before my alarm- awake, smiling, happy. I'm not saying 3 magically got easier. But I am saying that I haven't cried or felt like I was losing this parenting battle all week. I am saying that I can name a whole lot more really awesome moments I've had with her this week than difficult moments. I love being her mom & I love being able to see a change in her when I make a change in me!

When I saw this on the shelves yesterday, I remembered Shannon saying how much her KP enjoyed playing with it. I kind of thought it was a long shot for us, but I had a gift card so that's not real money wasted if it was a fail. Well, I would spend REAL money on this game! Aubrey Jo loooves it. I didn't even get the bags unloaded when we got home before she was trying to get into it. So I brought our pizza to the living room and decided to give it a whirl. Yall, she loved it! We played with this game for hours. Seriously, hours. Put it together, take it apart, switch cards, play again. It will probably make the short list for any little girls' birthday parties we attend.

I mentioned on another 5onFri post a while back about being stuck on the apologies in my Divorce 12 step. I still am really bummed that some of the apologies I put out there weren't reciprocated, or even accepted, in fact the were complete ignored as though that part of the conversation wasn't even heard. I am really excited though about the peace that others have brought. Two in particular, were people I was friends with before then went to not speaking at all (missing marriages, children, all kinds of big things I wish we could have shared) and now we are slowly but surely rebuilding. We are communicating almost daily. It's so nice. And, beyond that, after humbling myself enough to be honest and make real apologies, it is easier now to apologize just day to day for the smaller things. I still have a long way to go in that department, but we can't be perfect and I don't strive to be.

Because I haven't blogged since this glorious moment (=

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Waiting Room Pity Parties

I should preface this with what I know... I know I am very blessed. I know I have a big family that is always there when someone needs them. I know that I am never alone. I know that I will never be alone. I know that the waiting room wouldn't have room for all of the people who would show up for me if I needed them. I know.

You know how sometimes your emotions kick into overdrive and you are so surprised by the tears in your eyes that you don't have time to say "calm the hell down, you're acting crazy"? Yeah.. that. It happened to me.

I stayed with my mom in Atlanta for her treatments so it was just the 2 of us and I guess I had too much quiet time to think because I came back with pages and pages of journal rambling. We shuttled over to her treatments everyday with another couple that was also staying at the lodge. I smiled every time I saw them- her, so fragile and him holding her purse in one hand and her arm in the other. They greeted us with a smile, he even offered to crawl in the back of the van and let me sit up front. (don't you just love that about old men? of course I laughed and wouldn't let him even consider it.) In the van, we chatted about appointment times, the crazy cold, hospital food and of course my mom talks about her grandkids to anyone that sits still long enough. The wife was a very slow walker... I'm talking, VERY SLOW. He never rolled his eyes, asked her to speed up, or complained that her purse was too heavy, she didn't really need it, and people may look at him weird if they see him holding it. I loved watching them (though not so much walking behind them). The waiting room was full of partners just like him. Quietly updating family and friends on the phone when the patient stepped out, pacing back and forth, complaining about the coffee (as they poured another cup), arguing with insurance companies on their loved ones behalf, and yes, no shortage of men with purses in their laps and worry in their eyes. A room full of men (and women, but for the sake of my selfish story, just go with me here) who I am sure prayed they would never have to prove they meant the "in sickness" part of their vows; yet here they are, standing by their woman, holding their purse, watching their hair fall out, standing helplessly by while the woman they loved for so many years fights for her life in the room down the hall they aren't allowed to go in to.

Yall. It hit me. And I lost it. (refer to the preface. I know I have other family and I am SOOO thankful) If you saw my family history, you would know, for me it is not a matter of "if" but rather "when". And when it happens, I know that I won't be able to "do it all" and I will simply need someone.. In that waiting room, I felt the overwhelming feeling of being alone. Forever. (dramatic. I know. Like I said, those tears came on quick. I couldn't pull it together)

At 20 years old, you don't think much about the "in sickness" part of those vows you take. I didn't. My husband had so many opportunities (on a much smaller scale than cancer obviously) to be there in sickness when I really needed him. If I was open to the reality around me, I would have seen the red flags long ago. I know that had I stayed in that marriage, the man I was married to would not be in that waiting room holding my purse, he wouldn't slow his pace across the parking lot, and he certainly wouldn't kiss my bald head.

I will be more careful next time. I am honored and lucky to be in a position to be here with my mom; to have found her July 31st when our lives changed, to have sat beside her bed each day, to have paced the waiting rooms, soaked the Chapel floor with my tears, helped her at home, and been an ear when she needs to talk. I wouldn't want it any other way... but I am so thankful for ALL the other people who totally stepped up for us- friends and family- praying, delivering meals, baby sitting, giving advice on how to deal with insurance companies, and getting us in touch with the facilities we needed to- you name it; I couldn't do it by myself. I hope and pray that Aubrey Jo is in a position to be here for me if I need her one day, because I already know she can make me feel better when nothing else does... but I sure do hope she doesn't have to take on that task on her own.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Hello? Is this thing on?

Oh, hey. I forgot I had a blog there for a minute. 

Actually, that's not true. January has been a busy month for us full of highs and lows. I have a lot going on behind the social media scenes that I'm not quite ready to share yet. I also was really turned off by some women that I have grown to know in this little world and had to step back, evaluate, hashtag: unfollow, and think hard about some things. BUT I started having dreams that my friends were divorcing me so I decided its time for some updates. 

 I think Aubrey Jo really got used to me being home again & is not happy with me getting back in the swing of a semi-regular work schedule. Last week, she woke up before I left twice. Both times, she begged me to stay, go back to sleep, watch My Little Pony & drink milk with her. I was tempted. I need a new reason why I "have to" go to work because here's how our convo went each morning...

Day 1:
I have to go to work to make us some money. 
Papa has money. 
Papa won't share his money with mama though.  I gotta get my own. 
Papa shares with me. 
Is that right?
Yes. Papa shares with me. I share with mama. 

Kid almost had me convinced...

Day 2:
have to go to work to make us some money and buy pretty things. 
Santa buys "boo's!" Mama sleeps with me. 

I don't even know how to argue with THAT logic.....

I promise I run home though to make up for lost cuddle time ;)

Thursday, January 2, 2014

My First Single Christmas

I know what you're thinking. I was separated last Christmas. Yes, that's true, but my sister & her family didn't come and I was brand new at my job so we couldn't go either. Last year, Christmas Day was like any other day. Except we had a couple presents. It came & went without hardly being noticed. 

This year still wasn't like normal. With my mom's treatments, we weren't able to go home with our large family, but the immediate family came to us. My sister BIL and nephew as well as granny and grandpa. We cooked for DAYS leading up to Christmas, we had more presents than space, there were fires and sarcastic sighs and Christmas movies. It was as close to our usual as we could have hoped for. 

It was nice to be able to get back to what we are used to. It was exciting watching Miss Priss finally get excited about it. It had all the makings to be a dang near perfect holiday. 

But I found myself wanting to sneak away with Prissy and just hold her. Just us. Watching My Little Pony, ignoring the loud talking and laughing outside the bedroom door. Perhaps let a few tears sneak down my cheeks into her wild hair. Kids her again and again. Whispering I love yous and tickles during commercial breaks. 

This year, being so close to our normal, only seemed to point out the painful realities for me. The pictures felt unbalanced, the table felt short a chair, I felt very lonely. Everyone was "family" as in "Mary Ann's (my mom) family is here" which is to include "Katie (my sis) and her family" and then "Julianne and Aubrey Jo" of course we are all Granny's family. Everyone is "and family" and it feels sometimes like we fall short. I realize it's just simply that we only have 2 names so it's easy to say it whereas everyone else has a list of names so make it easy and say "and family". I know that. But I can't help the way it feels. 

I have become painfully aware how much things can change from one Christmas to the next. I am painfully aware how lucky we are that my mom was here. And that we don't know how many more we have her. Or my grandparents. Or any of us. I am very much aware that my life is full of thing bigger than a disappearing husband in holiday photos. But it doesn't change the emptiness divorce leaves. 

All I can hold on to is that this happened before my daughter understands. Before SHE shares in these feelings of missing something. 

Divorce isn't easy. I continue to be surprised by the triggers that hit me like a punch to the gut.  I continue to fear what awaits me around the next turn. 

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