When the tears fall without warning and the salty taste engulfs your entire being… When you quickly try to shoo those feelings away or stop those feelings in their tracks… Take a deep breath and just let them be for a minute. Those tears are likely unspoken words, long forgotten moments and just a little reminder of the life you’re living and the one(s) you’re grieving.
Remember there are no rules on being sad, no playbook for grief. No timeline. The reality of life is that one day you’re here and one day you’re not. Life is going to pass us all by one day at a time and our only job is live it. Live it in a way that brings you joy. Soak in whatever moments bring you happiness. Spend your hours with the people who make you feel. Yes the ones who make you feel!!! Feel content, safe, wild, alive! The ones who help make you feel like your best self! The ones who help bring out your passion, Those ones are the magic! You’re somebody’s magic and might not even know it!
Remember though you’re going to feel the hard feelings often enough. There is simply no escaping those either. Don’t waste too much time on trying to figure out what life is all about. I think if you’re busy focusing all your energy on finding the reason, trying to find the secret of life then you’re missing the journey. And friends… I think the secret to life is the journey.
As my Momma taught me… eat the cake! Sit down to drink your coffee and find reason to celebrate even the most mundane of Mondays!
You know what I realized sitting here a little battered and tired today? I realized that no one prepared me for any of this. No one prepared me to lose both my parents and my dog in the span of a year. No one ever could of prepared me for that.
No one told me how hard I’d have to advocate for my parents for 2 years before they left us. No one told me about the feelings I’d experience. The frustration, the sadness, the sorrow.
No one prepared me for this surgery. I didn’t know how I would feel. I didn’t even really know what to expect despite years in the medical field.
No one has prepared me for any of this but here I am…. A little battered, a little bruised. I’ve lost some pieces of myself along the way and found a few other pieces. But here I am… still holding it together and that’s pretty damn impressive!
Someone once said to me that grief might be easier to live with if we don’t look at it as a bad thing. Maybe if we embrace it and think of it as the way our brain is expressing love we never got to share. It will always hurt but maybe grief is there to remind us that we still love. It’s there to remind us our broken heat still feels.
We’re lost again but this time there were no surprises. Just closed eyes and more disappointment.
They say don’t blink because you might miss it all. I’m really starting to understand just how fast life really does go. Everyday those memories get a little blurrier around the edges. Those things that are here today could be gone tomorrow. We have to keep smiling even when our eyes are full of tears.
At some point I realized I simply can’t go home anymore because that place doesn’t exist any longer. At least not in a physical sense. I’ve realized that all this time I’ve been desperately trying to find the pieces to put myself back together but the world keeps chipping off hunks of me through life and loss. I don’t think I can ever be put back together in the sense I was looking for because nothing ever stays the same. In realizing that I also realized because of that everything stays the same on a different parallel line. For a brief moment I felt like maybe I’d stumbled upon the secret of life. Everything changes but nothing really changes. Everything stays the same in a way. We just keep going. We just keep holding on.
Almost a whole year of the saddest most heart wrenching alone feeling I’ve ever felt.
A year of trying to find the light, of finding the littlest moments to help get me by.
A year of realizing the things you thought you wouldn’t miss are the things you miss the most.
A year of holding on to the fact that it can’t be this way forever. All these sorrows and troubles will someday find a way of settling into dust. The realization that sometimes you have wait out the blizzard and try your best not to freeze.
With Mother’s Day fast approaching and all the love and fun that comes with it there is also sadness. Sadness for those who have lost their Mom, for those who never knew their Mom, for those who long to be a Mom, for those who long to feel the way they did before they were a Mom. Sadness for those who experienced pain at the hands of the one they call(ed) Mom. For those Dad’s who also have to act as Mom. For those Mom’s that suffered loss and long to hold their babies one more time.
Motherhood changes a person. It made me both stronger and softer. It made me both ferocious and timid. It made me feel love in a way I didn’t know existed and it made me feel anger in ways I wish I didn’t know existed. Motherhood has made me feel both full of love and full of terror. It’s made me marvel at my ability and long for a taste of the freedom I once knew. Losing my own Momma recently has made face my own mortality. It’s made me see things I missed my entire life. It’s made me wish for 5 more minutes to tell her things I should of said years ago. It’s made me understand the demons she was fighting and see the fears she faced. I spent my whole life near her and only truly saw some things for what they were once she was gone.
Being a Mom is hard. Being a Mom is exhausting. Being a Mom means giving up part of who you are so you can help your kids be who they are. Being a Mom is an amazing journey. Losing your Mom is a journey of a different sort.
To all the Mom’s out there…. I see you. I walk beside you! I’m here to help hold you up. I’m here to tell you those feelings and frustrations are ok. To all those who lost their Mom…. I am you, I hold a membership card to that club we didn’t ask to join and I cry with you.
To all the Aunts, Grandmas, friends, sisters, Dads that help stand in for us Mommas when we are sick, tired, drained, broken, or when we just need a minute…. Thank you.
Let’s be real here…. Clearly this year I haven’t stuck to the Thankful Thursday posts this year. It’s one more thing that has fallen to the wayside due in major part to the massive changes in my life. Why when I type that does it sound like such a cop-out? I think because I’m still trying to learn to cope with the changes. Learning to navigate.
Obviously the project didn’t go according to plan! I haven’t done one of the Thankful Thursday posts in a couple months. Those of you who know me in real life probably already know the reason for that! It’s not because I’m not finding things to be thankful for but because my life has been absolutely full of change. Massive changes that required my full attention and presence. In early January I learned my parents sold their home. It blindsided all of us because the house wasn’t listed for sale. They never told us they planned to do this. They just did it. Now I’m not going to go into a lot of personal detail here but know my parents are both heading towards 80 and we knew right away the best case scenario was for them was to move in with us. It would make things “easier” for us to be able to provide them care as required with them in our home. Things have been tough since covid hit. We found ourselves trying to maintain helping them as needed but also trying to maintain the required distance as required by local laws a d for safety sake of all involved. It was a lot and often didn’t work as well as we needed to.
It was a few months of organizing, purging, cleaning, packing, but mostly reassuring, talking, explaining, and trying to process my own feelings while trying to support my parents as their entire world changed.
It’s been 3 months now and it’s safe to say the honeymoon is over and real life slapped me in the face like a barn door in a wind storm. I’m doing my best to try to achieve that balance of keeping my little core families needs met by prioritizing time with just the three of us. Sometimes it’s easier than others but we did get in a trip up to Hundred mile for a week on the lake! We also got to escape to the island for a week to visit with Kevin’s family. Both were much needed. I’m also trying to maintain my own small space for my needs while being hugely responsible for the needs of my parents.
I find myself waffling between wanting to use this as my space to write about the trials and tribulations of caring for my aging parents, a place to scream about the horrors and hurt caused by dementia and memory loss. A place to word vomit it all out! At the same time I find myself a bit fearful and confused. I guess I’m torn between knowing what I need for my brain to process all this and also knowing that some family members read this and being very aware that reading about some of this on a public internet blog might not sit well. Well… I guess this is my official content warning…. I might blog about things you don’t agree with. You don’t have to be here. I hope you stay and can be supportive but nothing is forcing you to continue reading.
It’s interesting to me that I find myself posting any sort of warning to someone who really only follows along for information. To a person(s) who doesn’t actually offer any support or advice or even any genuine care. So before you pass your unwelcome, unneeded, unrequested judgement on my posts, my life, or how I choose to process this part of my journey please ask yourself this, are you actually part of my life? Like really part of my life or just a “Facebook friend” ? Please know my heart is not closed to any of you but also know I won’t wait by the front gate for any of you to maybe drop by. I will however always answer my phone and my door to respectful relationships with all of you!