Thursday, March 31, 2011

Crazy random and yet new awakenings...

If I hear one more person tell me that they understand my pain. I am going to shout!!! If you have not lost a spouse then you don't get it!. Thats it. You just don't get it. The pain and loss of losing a child is horrid. I can't imagine it. But I would not stand there and tell you that I understand, because I don't. Instead I understand your grief. There are similarities in grief and loss. But everyones loss is completely different. If you have lost your grandparents it is completely not even in the same category as the loss of a spouse, parent or a child. Its just not. The. Same.
  My mother in law gave me this beautiful book called " Letter to a Grieving Heart" It was such a good book that I stood in my driveway and read the whole thing. However it brought up many things that i didn't want to remember right now. But then there is never a "good" time to remember things right? Doesn't it always seem that when you are grieving or in severe pain, people crawl or run to you. But if say you are down in the dumps or having a hard day.. then it feels like I just have to suck it up and deal. He is never coming back. End of story. However the pain remains the same. It hurts the day he died and it hurts today. I may not feel like slitting my wrists today but I still hurt for him. Something, that no one can understand unless again you have lost your spouse, your child, the love of your life. What gets me so frustrated at times is that not only did I lose the love of my life, my best friend, my lover, the father of my children and husband. I lost all of those people, that made up one person in 3 1/2 very short weeks. And sometimes I just want to shout "Really...???" I can't get my best friend back. Ever. That man that made up Pete is just not coming back.
  No one  will ever replace him. But Someone, could see me, possibly even catch a glimpse of the me that Pete loved so much. But yet even then. The "friend" can't understand the loss. And wouldn't know where to begin. But is it possible to ask them to try? Is that fair? Will the "friend" feel competition for my affection. Between a dead man, friend, spouse, lover, and father. Is that too much to ask? Is it worth it?
  Its the constant frustration. I stand and look at my situation and think "Um.. yeah, there is no way anyone would want this.." Me ? Yes I think they could/would want me. But it's three kids. They then have to find the love and acceptance of three beautiful and adoring children. Who are protective of me, of each other and still grieve the loss of their Daddy. It feels constricting and suffocating. Then I want to Shout "But I am worth it! I know we are!" Aren't we? We are healing, and we are seeing the light. We are allowing another in to the secret space...
  Still it keeps coming back. The roadblock. Maybe it's not that. Maybe the right person wouldn't see it as that. That this ache, this pain and suffering was part of the journey. That we chose. I know that I am not incapable of love,. I do feel at times that I am incapable of accepting it. Even as I write that it feels like a contradiction. What have i been wanting.. someone to love me. Hold me and tell me that this pain is over. I know, I know, it will never be completely over it will just heal. and the memories remain.  That beauty and that joy, of that life, I had before. I can embrace it. Mourn the loss of it. But yet be grateful for it. That life, that Man that I so completely loved taught me so many things about life, friendship, parenting and just sheer joy that I might never have known.  It's taking all those things that Pete gave to me and trying to fit them into the being I was then, and mold it into the being I am becoming. Is it possible?  Yet I question myself and my motives. I can pour out the love, but why can't I let it in. As if I am punishing myself for some reason. Because Pete is not here. I punish myself because I lived and he didn't. And thats what it comes too. So irrational. I know. But it's a sudden realization that has just come to me in this very moment.
  I have met someone. Someone who has made me feel alive. I thought I was dead. And I started to look around and realize that I wasn't. It is a weird feeling. I am breathing. I am living in this life, right now. Wide awake. I have a pulse, my blood flows freely through out my body and my heart pumps. I have three beautiful children, who know happiness and laughter. And Yet I don't think I knew that. Yet I hold back. It's me. When I thought it was this new "friend". yes he too does hold back. And for God's sake why wouldn't he. But I hold back too. I know what you are thinking. "Of course you hold back you lost your spouse, what did you think would happen when you found someone else? That you could go back?"  My answer is that No, rationally I knew that I could not got back. And I have my eyes wide open. I think it's my heart that maybe not as open. While I do have feeling for him. that I thought at first was so strange. Why? I mean I am married for God's sakes. But No, I am not. Pete is Physically not here. By law, I am a widow. I have the papers that say so.
  The craziness of it all... Is telling myself that I had no problem letting this person in. saying" It is what it is." And yet still realizing that I am punishing myself for living. Something a well rounded, optimistic person doesn't do. Or shouldn't. Or at least thats What I feel on the inside. I know my Pete. He would not be happy to know that I feel I should punish myself for feeling happy with someone else. I have spread my arms out and said "take it or leave it".  "friend" wants to take it. I know, if I was sane I wouldn't' say Why? but still Why? I can't help it. I can give, but I can't receive. And there's the big question. Am I a lost cause? I don't know... Should I know?  By the way for those of you who know me well know that I don't do anything half way. It's all or nothing. So for me to stand on the edge and try to be careful is hard. But , I am careful for my kids. And I have tried to push really hard recently and I get no where but anxious. So, apparently being careful is the best way to do it. You can bet that I won't be in a white dress tomorrow if that is what you are worried about.
  So now what. Take life as it comes? Yeah OK. And? What about all the questions? It's coming to that place where I can see that there really is life out there. Which sounds so damn stupid. As if I am that Reba MacEntire song. I just don't know how to say it, I know you all are shocked!!  But here is a quote that I just read that says it perfectly:
 " How do you drag a heavy, frozen heart around every day and night? It's exhausting. Like a fever. But cold. And you think you will never feel very much again. Except pain." (Letter to a grieving Heart ~ Billy Sprague)

  That's what it's like. However now, My heart is starting to thaw. It feels. It warms. It breaths. It beats. Its loved. This heart that only knew how to bleed and cry and bleed some more. This heart that is learning to heal and let someone else in. It's confusing. It's frustrating. It's happy. It's sad, It's grieving. How can I feel all those things at one time and still want more. I want it all. I want the kids to feel complete joy. I am not saying that I need this friend to feel whole. It's that I am becoming aware that I am whole even without Pete. I am whole weather I ever love again or not. That feeling or realizing that I can take all those things that Pete taught me and the ones I learned in grief and put them together to BE, Whole!! TO be whole with the kids. And if I can see that right now, then I owe it to myself to receive too. Right? That I am worth it, That Pete thinks I am worth it. That this new "Friend" thinks I am worth it. That I owe it to my kids to teach and show them that we are worth it.  I mean I have no doubt that they are worthy of it. They are beautiful and wonderful little beings. Demanding.. but worthy. Yet it's me that stands on the edge and questions weather I am worthy of it. It's in these moments that I put this all together. That  it start to settle into my mind, my heart, my body.  And it make me wonder?
   This post has been insightful, not just to you. But to me the author. There are still questions that remain, and yet new awakenings that settle into my new "being". Guess we will all have to see what crazy adventure the kids and I have next. And what crazy things will I think or evaluate about myself. What a crazy journey this is...

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Crazy "Daddy" Moments...

To me it seems there are certain things that little boys need that only a Daddy can offer. I mean Mommy can only do so much. Say for example Rough Housing. Yes, Mommy can wrestle their boys but only to a certain point. There is just some things that "Daddy's" do better. The other one is sports. I know there are many, many, woman who are very good at sports and excel at them. I , however am not one of them.  I can ride a horse and I can play baseball. But, to teach my son anything about sports is not my expertise. I was raised by musicians.   My mom was very, very, I do mean very, girlie. So therefore when she was blessed with three little girls she created us all in her image. My dad was into sports but, I would not say he was an active participant.  The only thing I remember my dad doing well where sports was concerned. was Tennis. He loves Tennis and Horseback riding. So, when he and my mom were married and he had only girls, there are three things he taught us to do. 1. Ride a horse, 2.Shoot a gun, 3. Play tennis. However that being said. One has to be athletic in order to play tennis. And if you have three very girlie girls, the chances are slim that any of them will be that athletic. But I can proudly say that if push came to shove I could probably play tennis, not well or gracefully but I could. I am also a fantastic horsewoman and I don't miss my target.
  However back to being a boy, I am not. I am a Mommy. I could teach Petey to ride a horse, but not play tennis. I don't really know the first thing about football. Although I do like to watch it. I understand it enough to watch it, but get all confused about what makes it a first down... I can teach Petey about art, and music. But would not have any clue as to where to begin with say hockey for example. I was watching him today with his Abuelo (Pete's Dad) They were outside playing T-Ball. Pete Sr. was giving him pointers on where and how to hold the bat. Petey, is just like his Daddy. If a ball is involved you can bet he will master it. I am grateful for Abuelo for showing Petey the things he needs to know. But at the same time I feel sad and empty that his Daddy isn't here to show him how. Pete would have loved that. Even now as I sit here on my couch I can see his smile and hear his laughter. As he would marvel at Petey and the things that his "little boy" can do.
  But it's not just the sports. I mean, Pete was going to teach Aryanna about cars. (That is another thing that I don't know much about either.) Not saying that I can't learn.. I suppose I could . But it was Pete's job. He was supposed to be here to do these things for his children. To share with them. To share his hobbies, his talents, his gifts. It feels to me that they are missing out. They are missing out on so many things and it just doesn't seem right!! When Pete was alive, Aryanna already knew about the transmission. We were in the car and she said " Mommy you need to put that stick on the N like Daddy does. He said it's b/c the the transmission is slipping!" She was like 3 and a half. Petey is 3 and a half and doesn't know that. Who is going to teach him that? Aryanna used to be so balanced in liking both the so called "boy things" and "girl things." Now it's just girl things. cause there is no "boy" here to teach her.
  I know I am sure you are thinking. Well Pete's not here , why don't you figure it out. And I guess At this point I don't want to. I want Pete to do it. But he can't, and that just doesn't seem right. I never thought I would be one of those people as an adult to say "It's just not fair." But really lets be honest, "It's just NOT fair!!"  What must it be like for A and P to see Daddy's with their kids at the park. I am realistic and realize that even kids who have Daddy's in their lives are not always active "Daddy's" Or, that their are lots of single mom's doing the "Daddy" job too. B/c in reality there are a lot of deadbeats out there. On the flip side though there are a lot of really, really great Daddy's.
  I do realize as well, that Petey won't grow up not knowing how to play football, or soccer, or even Tennis for that matter. He will get guidance from somewhere. It's just not where I wanted it to come from. Where Petey would have wanted, or needed it to come from. It's in these little moments that I realized how much Pete is missing out. Aryanna and Petey are missing out. I do realize that it's temporary this feeling of missing out. I just wish it wasn't this way. Is that part of grieving? realizing it? Yet accepting it and seeing the rational side too? Knowing that it won't be forever but still having to feel it. That feeling of missing out.
   For me I hate to go to a big park where lots of families are together all playing. The sight of the little girl squealing with laughter as her Daddy pushes her so high on the swing. Or the Little boy yelling " Daddy look I caught it!" Or the intimate way that Mommy looks at Daddy over the heads of their children sharing a moment of pride and joy. It's me, looking at my kids faces watching and waiting as they too absorb all that is going on around them. That look of longing, and searching for him in the crowd. Like if they could just look hard enough they would see Pete emerge from the other side of the park.  It's me pasting on a smile and pulling them behind me trying to pretend that it will be so much fun.. Just wait and see.. It's me wondering how am I going to keep track of all three of them. Who is going to play catch with Petey? How will I push Aryanna on the swing, and try and keep all the mulch out of Chase Leo's mouth. I want that family scene, I want that back. It's that frustration of knowing that I still grieve for it.  That impatient side of me that is stomping her foot yelling "I will not be that woman at the park." You know the one who stands off to the side, with the sad and empty smile. While her kids run in all different directions and she doesn't know which one to go after first.
  I know I have to find the peace in myself to accept it. That this is my life now. But I can dream. And I can pray that God brings me a man that Pete would love, his kids and his wife loving. A man who can Love A, P and CL like they were his own . Yet being OK with the fact that they are not biologically his. A man who can be that Daddy type for A, P and CL. To share in those intimate moments between father and son, father and daughter. And even those intimate smiles between a Mommy and a Daddy, of pride and joy.  Sometimes there seems to be so much gray area, so much red tape. The hopeless romantic in me that wants to just shout "Love will conquer all!"  Love will accept the crazy, the uncertain, the grey area, the red tape. Love will bypass the confusion in "I am not your Daddy, I could never be your Daddy, but I love you like a Daddy."
  I know it's all craziness. My fears of the kids missing out. My fears of not being able to be everything for my boys all the time. Trying to raise men, and yet wanting a man of my own too. Too much? Maybe. But then I never do things the easy way. That would be too easy right? I do know this. I may be crazy, but I never do anything half way. Whether that be worrying about things that I cannot change ( I know if you cant change it then why worry) Or loving my kids or that special someone with such passion and intensity. I know that woman that Pete loved is inside of me, but I also know that this woman I am becoming now is strong, beautiful, intense, but also learning to love herself.
   I know that rationally A, P and CL won't miss out forever. They will have that special someone not just for Mommy, but for them too. That even for the crazy, the gray area, the red tape. There is Love. For all of us. That is what Pete would want. Its knowing  that together the kids and I are lovable even though we may be a whole ball of crazy!! Always unexpected and never for one minute boring.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Crazy sickness...

Too many sick kids, just too much. I was rocking Chase Leo to sleep this evening. As I was wishing that he would just go to sleep. I was also chanting I wish you were here Pete. Over and over in my head. As if wishing was going to bring him back. If only...
  My boys have had the stomach flu this week. Petey got sick early Saturday morning. Luckily it wasn't one of those hours and hours of throwing up. He was sick twice and then just slept it off. However just as soon as I thought I was done with the flu, it came back with a vengeance. Chase Leo got it. He got it really really bad. He was sick for four days. He threw up literally for four days. It was insane. I have been thrown up on so many times this week, that it's just not pretty. Thankfully CL is much better today and is starting to eat and be hungry.  But Aryanna came home from school and said her tummy hurt. She didn't really eat dinner until late this evening. She did have a low grade fever. I am hoping that she too can just sleep it off.
  It's this whole idea of dealing with sick children by myself that makes me feel like I am banging my head against the wall. I mean, it's not like I can really ask anyone to come in and help me. They then run the risk of getting the flu themselves. I can't ask anyone to watch my sick kids so that I can run here or there b/c no one wants there kids to get it. I mean really, you don't want this in your house!!  But before when Aryanna or Petey was to get sick in the night, there was another set of hands. Someone else to worry with me. To help care for the kids, heck to even care for me. On a side note I am so, so, so, Blessed that I did not get it!! Thank You Lord for that blessing. Even then who could come and care for me, or care for the kids if I am throwing up every where. It just feels like this week was too much. Just too much. Tired of doing in alone all the time. Always being the constant caretaker. I mean I hate it when they are sick. Absolutely, hate. it. There is only so much you can do. The virus or bug or whatever, just has to run it's course. I can hold them and snuggle them but I can't take it away for them.
  With this "sick" week my grief has been worse. I know that the kids grief has been worse. I can remember when Aryanna got the flu soon after Pete had passed and she was crying in her sleep, "I want daddy".  God, it was awful. There was nothing I could do. I just sat in her rocking chair and sobbed, chanting "I want your daddy too". It shattered my heart even more.  It was while I was holding Chase Leo that I realized that he doesn't miss his daddy, he doesn't know, that anything is missing. I mean so many people would say that, that is a blessing, and yet it breaks my heart too. Today I was folding the worlds biggest load of towels. and CL pointed to a picture of Pete holding Petey and smiled. He said Da, which made me smile. He knows. even though he doesn't.
   I sit here now.. when I should probably be in bed. Too many nights of not sleeping and yet I can't sleep. I was putting clean sheets on my bed and I thought. "Ya know I hate doing this. I wash these sheets and then I make the bed. Just so that I can pull back the covers and slide into them alone". I have started putting all the pillows on one side of the bed and then burrowing in. It makes the bed seem smaller and not so big and alone.  Often times I feel like my mother. How many times did she do the same thing. And I remember wondering "why does she do that?" or "How can she breathe with all those blankets on top of her?" Now I know. It's comforting. It's like a nest. That is just big enough for me. No wiggle room. No worry of reaching over too far and feeling the empty space beside me.  Sometimes when the lonely creeps in and sinks into my skin there is nothing to do but cry.  But for now, I have figured out some ways of coping and if it means that the pillows are piled to the ceiling so that I can sleep in my cozy bed, then I guess so be it.  
  I miss him, and yes I know that I will always miss him. But like this bug/sickness, There is nothing I can do about it. I just have to let it run it's crazy course.