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I Lost My Words…

The night Muffin left me. The night my heart broke. Ive tried so many times to write but the words don’t come. Losing my Mom and my fuzzy best friend in a four month span gutted me in a way I can’t even explain. Ive been left feeling alone, feeling an urgency of my own passing years. Forced to face my own mortality. Forced to recognize that these events don’t come with complete closure.

The memories play over and over when I close my eyes. Sometimes they bring comfort but more often they make it hard to breathe. The leave me feeling that cold chill you experience when the sun goes down and day creeps into night.

I swore I wasn’t going to get a puppy. I couldn’t. I swore I didn’t have the patience. I didn’t think I could get past the feeling I’d somehow betrayed Muffin. Everyone told me to wait. I met a few rescue pups and it left me feeling like I’d gotten punched in the gut. Those pups were all sweet but they didn’t give me that feeling. I wasn’t ready to commit but the house felt unbearably empty and cold. Coming home in the mornings after taking Jacob to school gutted me day after day. Never in my life had I experienced feeling so alone. Never had I felt such emptiness.

At the urging of one dedicated dog rescue friend I went to meet a pup. A pup with big flappy ears. Special ears as Krista calls them. I didn’t expect this meeting to go much differently then the other pups. Some cuddles, a face lick and me leaving in tears.

But this meeting did go differently. This little long legged flappy eared pup cuddled up to Kevin. She ignored the other pups and took cover in my lap. She looked at me with the saddest eyes. Her eyes held the same alone feeling I was feeling. Her eyes held a story. A story that in her short life she’d been through so much fear and confusion. For this lil pup had been born in the streets of Mexico and thankfully rescued by amazing people and nursed back to health before being brought to Canada. With that gift of a new life came her losing her “Mom” multiple times in her short life. She lost her birth Momma, she lost he foster Mom in Mexico to come to Canada and on the day I met her she was about to lose her Canadian foster Mom. In that moment with those big sad eyes looking at me I couldn’t let her keep losing her “Mom’s” because I know exactly how it feels.

Now she’s ours and we are hers. Now she feels safe enough to not cry and panic when I go to work. Now she knows this is her home. She’s learned all the people in this crazy full house love her. She has learned that Emma brings her home chicken nuggets and French fries after work. She’s learned Ella is the littlest but makes her feel safe. She’s learned uncle will take kisses when no one is looking. She’s learned Ej gives the best ear scratches. She’s learned Grandpa’s bedroom door is easy to push open for a quick visit. She’s learned there is nothing like have a fuzzy cousin to wrestle with. Shes learned that somehow in this life the stars aligned and her fur brother lives a few blocks away and she gets to play with him! Shes learned Auntie gives great cuddles and usually has treats handy! She’s learned the green grass in the backyard is an amazing place to lay and watch your world. She’s learned that Jacob is the most loving big brother she could of gotten. She’s learned that Dad gives the best tummy rubs and is an absolute lover of puppy cuddles. She’s learned that this house has a box of toys that are all hers and a basket of treats that is never empty. She’s learned this house has the most amazing collection of blankets and she’s welcome to every single one of them!

And she’s learned that this Mom is her forever Mom. That this Mom needs her love. That this Mom wants to give her all the treats, all the toys, all the cuddles. She’s learned this Mom cries sometimes and holds on to another pups collar. She’s learned that those are the best times to quietly position herself next to Momma and offer quiet support. This pup has learned what it’s like to feel love and to give love.

She has learned she’s home.

Bandit is the fuzzy twine that wrapped all the pieces of my broken heart back together and is helping me through the darkness. The question really is who rescued who?

Mother’s Day

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.

Muffin McGavin

Two moments…forever etched on my heart. The moment we met and the moment you took your last breath. 💔

12.5 short years we had together. I’d give everything for another year. I’m so thankful to have had your love tiny sweet girl.

I’m so thankful that she got to live a life in which she was with us as much as possible. I’m so glad she got to come to work with me all those days back when. I’m so relieved to know she stayed by Kevin’s side for the 7 long years he was dealing with the worst of his injury. I’m thankful she didn’t spend her days waiting for us to come home from work. I’m so glad she knew we loved her.

But most of all I marvel at the bond she had with Jacob. Muffin knew I was pregnant before I knew I was pregnant. In the days prior to me finding out she kept laying her head against my belly. I asked the doctor once and he said dogs have much better hearing than humans do and she could hear Jacob’s heartbeat. When I learned I was pregnant I was terrified how she would react to a baby…evidently I had nothing to worry about! When I got sick during pregnancy she would gag and throw up too. That’s solidarity. When Jacob arrived on the scene it took her a hot minute to claim him as hers and snuggle right in for the long haul. When he’d cry she’d become distraught. I think her favourite thing was when he learned to walk! She was amazed! I was amazed she never destroyed a single one of his toys despite them living on the floor and her being the queen of making it snow with stuffie innards!

I’m going to miss the kisses, the snuggles, hearing your collar tags jingle as you ran down the hallway! I’m going to miss the way you’d stand on my chest and stare at me when I tried to sleep in! I’m going to have to fight the urge to “accidentally” drop your favourite human foods on the ground. I’m going to cry a lot. I’m going to hurt. I’m going to have to find a way to calm myself because you were my sanity.

This world feels a little darker today. This house feels colder and empty. It’s missing it’s heart. I’m missing part of my heart. My tiny best friend has left my earthly side and it hurts in a way I could not have even imagined prior to 8 pm last night. My heart is shattered but I had the honor of knowing true, unconditional love.

Muffin thank you for the love, the knowledge and for the way you let me know I could get through the hard things. Thank you for dedicating your life to loving us. I pray you knew just how much we loved you.

We will always love you

I will never forget you shaggy girl 💔💔

I Know Ive Been Quiet….

But I saw something today that really slapped me in the face and got my attention!! Now I’m sharing it with you because it’s so important and no one tells you this!!!! Don’t put your well-being at risk to avoid making a scene or hurting someone’s feelings!! This goes for all the things listed below but also for friendships, jobs, marriages, family dinners, appointments, etc!! If something is making you uncomfortable you don’t owe it to anybody to stay there and suffer!!!

I think this resonates with me so deeply for a number of reasons but especially because of how long I stayed working for an abusive employer because I felt I had too!! I was raised to believe you don’t quit and now thanks to life experience and therapy I know it’s ok to quit! It’s ok to put myself first! It’s ok to walk away!!!

It’s funny writing this today after coming home from my shift at my new job which I absolutely love. I think about what I worked through at my last job and feel so incredibly grateful to now be working for a family who values me as nurse, as a caregiver, and most importantly as a person!

When I left my last job I truly didn’t know if I’d ever return to nursing but after a long hiatus involving therapy, self discovery, self love, and healing I’m so thankful to have found a job in the field I love that reminds me why I went into health care in the first place. I’m so thankful to have found a family to help that truly is thankful for my help.

I now know it’s ok to leave when you don’t feel right about a situation. It’s ok to leave when you aren’t being respected, it’s okay to walk away. You don’t owe your well being to anyone except you!!

❤️

Thankful Thursday September 16 2021

This morning I crawled out of my warm bed to take Muffin out to pee. I was hit with cold air upon opening the door! Cold air I haven’t felt since early last spring! I rushed Muff along and upon returning inside took a moment to crawl into bed beside Jacob. His barely awake warm self instantly embraced me and we cuddled for a solid 10 minutes before going about our regular before school routine. Now as I sit here reflecting on the morning I realize how much those ten minutes changed my day. They made me feel loved and relaxed and that put me in a great mood. I had more patience with my parents this morning and generally find myself less stressed!!

I hope our cuddle had the same effect on his day and I hope he never outgrows Momma cuddles! ❤️

August Slipped Away Into A Moment In Time….

But I can see all the moments etched in my mind.

The passing of time is a cruel reminder that life is only so many seasons long. I’m sitting here this morning trying to figure out where the Summer went.

I’m thankful we got to spend time as a family making memories. As I look towards the approaching Fall I have an extremely strong grasp on what’s important to me while everything else seems to be spiralling out of control around me.

With that being said, honestly im exhausted. We are about to start down a brand new path of a child in school learning, a husband with a permanent injury attempting to go back to work, and continuing to weather the storm of aging parents.

Every time I think I’ve caught my breath something seems to push be back under the wave I’m trying not to drown in. I think I’m tired of trying to fill that void.

If I Didn’t Know Better….

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!

Always Go Past Where Your Feet Can Touch

Isn’t it strange how we can spend thousands of hours in the same place and be completely unmoved by it? Yet our brains hold on to places where we only spent a few hours. Flashing back to those brief hours frequently and longing for that spot. Longing for that feeling. How can our brains remember the details in such a fleeting moment? How come I can close my eyes and see a place so vividly? Did I leave a piece of my soul there?