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Showing posts from October, 2006

Happy Halloween!

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I can't show you any cool Halloween pictures of us carving pumpkins this year because I'm a loser mom and we haven't actually carved our pumpkins for this year.

We spent three hours priming the walls upstairs last night and we came to a few conclusions.
~All primer is not created equal.
~Beware the wrath of a four-year-old with a paint roller.
~Three hours of painting leads to very sound sleep.
~Advil is a necessity of life.
~As tempting as it is, we can not leave everything covered in primer white...we must paint with color or our upstairs will look like an asylum.
~Wood and laminate floors are nice looking...but we may need some carpet in order to reduce the echo effect going on up there.

While bringing horses in from the pasture last night I was able to see the house all lit up on the inside. I must admit that it looks warm and inviting. But it definitely needs another kid in it. I'm not being greedy...one would be enough.

Liar, liar, pants on fire

So I thought I could trust you all to call bullshit when you saw it.

Hmmm...I may have to re-evaluate our relationship.

I am not doing well. Not at all.

Now who wants to help me paint?

Dear Catherine:

I am pleased to inform you that Travis' marker has been completed, and was shipped via UPS Ground on Friday 10/27.

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Well, I'm glad he's pleased.

Toast Life

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Last night we attended Baby Milo's social debut. On the drive into the big city for the celebration, I saw a billboard for Korbel that said, "Toast Life." And that is what we did...in grand fashion.

It was quite the party (even though we were too lame to participate in the costumey fun). Milo slept through the first half, all snuggled up in his bumblebee costume. But once his mama (or was it his papa?) took him out of his little bumblebee bunting, he was awake enough to grace us with his arm waving and a couple of smiles. He is such cute baby...very mellow and laid back.

It was a lot of fun to meet Laura and Justin's family and friends. Justin's mom, brother, sister-in-law, and niece (only a few weeks older than Milo), all dressed up as Joe, Justin's step-father. It made me giggle to see all those mustaches...especially on the baby.

Laura's mom is just as lovely as Laura, though I question her sanity just a bit in leaving warm and sunny Florida to come to Oh…

This post or that post

I have two posts rolling around in my brain.

The first is filled with negative energy directed outward at everyone who has told me recently that "it's just too hard to read your blog." Yeah...I get it...I'm sad...this blog is sad...you just can't bring yourself to face that. Never mind that I don't get a choice about the sadness and you make me feel like an inconvenience when you say things like that...we're good.

oops...it seems as though that first post just slipped out. Though I can assure anyone reading this that the original version was much longer and filled with profanities that would make your hair curl.

The second is the post that I'm afraid to post. It's the one that will most likely cause a chain reaction of telephone calls the likes of which I'm not sure the telecommunications infrastructure of our great country can handle. Plus, I don't want to jinx anything. No, I'm not pregnant (thank God).

[Big deep breath]

We submitted …

Do you see it?

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Siding on the FRONT of the house!

Crafting and shopping and other non-birth/death related activities

~Do you have any idea how hard it is to craft in a house that is under construction?

~I have almost finished the not-so-secret gift for a friend's baby. K...I spent yesterday's seminar time crocheting away and it's almost finished. I should have it ready to mail out to you by Monday. It is completely impractical but I hope you like it anyway.

~I need to buy a snap setter for my charity sewing of burial gowns. eBay here I come.

~I have to unearth my sewing machine in order to sew for my charity sewing of burial gowns. Where do I put the mountain of crap that is currently sitting on top of the sewing machine? I guess it doesn't matter since the whole house looks like a disaster area.

~My secret santa shopping is done for my birth month message board exchange. This particular mom was a challenge, since I don't know her real well. But I think I picked something she'll like. Now to shop for family gifts. Christmas is right around the corner!

~Speaking of shopping, I get …

Welcome to the world Ava Maureen!

My friend M welcomed her miracle baby girl Ava into her already beautiful family this morning at 8:53am. Ava weighs 7lbs 14oz and is 20 inches long.

Congratulations to the whole family!

Inside jokes

Last night I turned to Steve and asked, "Do you ever have days where you just feel like you're not doing so well?" I know full well that most normal people would think I meant I was having a bad day. But I hoped that Steve would understand the true question.

And he did.

And he answered, "Yes."

And that was what I needed to hear, not because I needed to hear it, but because it was true. He has never lied to me about his feelings that I know of, and this is a gift that I never really paid much attention to until we lost our boys. Someone by your side who fully understands you. I don't mean in the superficial way that people think is important when they are 'falling in love.' But in the real and honest and sometimes ugly ways that we hope to never have to rely on.

He gets it in a way that few people ever will.

But the fact that he gets it is a comfort and a weapon that cuts too deep at the same time. I hate that we have any reason to share that sort of …

And the third verse...la de da de da

It seems I've been here before...this time, this place, this feeling. I posted something a year ago titled, "Second verse, same as the first." And here I am...not so very far from that place at all...but a million miles from the place I was two years ago. How did an entire year go by without me?

I want to feel like I'm a part of life again...not just a part of the same old refrain sung over and over without any sense of emotion. I long for that feeling of unbridled joy that could elicit dancing or singing without prior warning (and people need prior warning if I'm going to sing or dance...because it is a scary scary thing). I miss being happy and I feel guilty for it.

I stare at their pictures on my wall and think how beautiful they were. Our babies. But they are gone and I am tired of missing them. What the hell kind of mother am I? Don't bother me kid, you're dead.

Sam's preschool Halloween party was fun only because I drank beforehand. No, I'm kid…

Tile decision made

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The light tile is the floor tile. The other is the shower and tub surround tile with accent. We're saving some money and only putting the accent on the tub (since nobody sees the inside of the shower anyway). Now, I need to decide where to put the line of accent tiles...toward the bottom, middle or top of the tub surround.

Even pumpkins?!?!

I planned to grow pumpkins this year. But like a lot of things, it just didn't happen. Hell, I planned to grow a kid and that didn't happen. So I gave up the idea of pumpkins along with the idea of most anything else that required care to grow. In fact, I only got a few peas, tomatoes and peppers out of my garden because I just didn't feel that growing spirit in me.

So we'll go to the pumpkin patch and I'll smile and take pictures. I guess that's not so bad when you consider the long list of disappointments this year.

And aren't I a freakin' ball of sunshine? Geez...I don't even want to listen to myself.

I just want to buy a pumpkin without feeling sad.

It's only a pumpkin...not a metaphor for my life...really.

House update

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The siding is moving along. The red window looks silly now. Definitely going to have to get out there and paint it white...soon.


We have one door in. Now to get the doorknob in it.



Here's the tub area where I need tile help. The front face and part of the surround walls will be tiled...if I can ever make a decision on tile. I would like it to coordinate with the shower tile...again...a choice I have to make. The floor tile is just neutral beige ceramic that has a sort of marble design to it.

Pain and Perspective

Each of us is broken, somewhere deep inside
And we're really not that different, if you strip away the pride
Pray for Me (Rob Crosby & Allen Shamblin)

I get that everyone has their issues. I get that people have problems. Believe it or not, I even feel empathy for other people going through a tough time...I do feel pain for them. I have perspective.

It's just that this ugly little voice inside of me always screams.

I never let it be heard by anyone but me (and Steve and the internet). I know that giving it a voice would make me a monster.

But that doesn't stop it from screaming.

More than anything, I want to silence it. I want some peace. I want the pain to subside so that I can feel for other people again without self-consideration. I don't want to have to weigh whether I'm capable of being supportive today...whether I have the strength to withstand someone else's pain in addition to my own. I just want to be a friend that someone can turn to without question…

Too many choices

Ceramic
Slate
Glass
Painted
Individual
Mosaic
Molded
Etched
Colors
Size
Price

And that's just for the tub tile!

Enough already!

If I have to listen to my office neighbor complain about taking the bar exam one more time... Results are out next week. I hope to hell he passes or I might have to start regularly bringing headphones to work.

I would kill for your problems

How do I deal with this?

I keep thinking, "I would do almost anything for your problems." I don't want to belittle other people's issues...but I just can't seem to stop my brain from going to that place where I think, "At least your kids are alive." And then the guilt for thinking that sets in and I beat myself up pretty well.

It seems I've got the grieving part of this routine down pretty well. Now I just need some help on the healing part of it.

Thoughts?

The little things

For the past two years I have been consumed with "the big things"...life, death, love, God. Many of the little things have been categorized into a less significant place in my life. Lately, however, I am again noticing how important the little things are. Actually, I am noticing how the little things and the big things collide all around me, causing ripples in my life that can change my mood, my thought process, even my direction in life.

Like yesterday when I opened my mailbox and there was a Halloween card for Sam. I saw the return address and immediately thought, "Grandma sent Sam a Halloween card like she always does." Then there was a beat, a brief moment where the collision of the reality of her death and that little card occurred, and I smiled. Right there at my mailbox I was struck by how much I miss that crazy old Polish lady...and how blessed I was to have her as my grandma for all those years. I miss her, no doubt, but I also celebrate all those moments …

More grief

If you have another moment, please stop by Manuela's blog and surround her with love.

God, this happens TOO much!

You just never know

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My colleague brought this magic wand into the office so that we can share its magical powers. When we wave it in a persons direction, they do what we want with no questions asked.

Now to understand the hilarity of this, you must understand that we are attorneys who work for local government...nobody does what we want with no questions asked. And the magic wand has, on more than one occasion, been contemplated as a weapon to bean someone over the head...opposing counsel, clients, defendants, the boss...the magic wand is equal opportunity.

My colleague is funny, but I have never considered her to be the type to really let her guard down and laugh a full belly laugh with anyone. So it really caught me off guard when she returned the magic wand to my office this morning telling me how it didn't work in the Supreme Court. I'm not kidding you. She took this thing to the Supreme Court of Ohio! She said it shows up remarkably well on the xray machine as you enter the building...but t…

Outside and inside walls

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Another soul gone too soon.

If you have a moment, please visit Emma's Mum and offer your love.

I wish you knew me when

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Our mini vacation to the beach was actually an opportunity to meet a group of women I have been chatting with online for the last five years...since I was pregnant with Samuel. They have seen me through the best and the worst times in my life so far, and I imagine they will be there for many more. Though realistically I know people drift apart and it is hard to maintain online relationships, I still hope that we can stay close for another five...ten...fifteen years. They mean that much to me.

It seemed strange...overwhelming...to finally meet these amazing friends. But I really felt like I needed to see them face-to-face...a sort of test of myself. I'm not sure what exactly it tested, but I feel like I passed whatever the test was.

I even held a baby. A gloriously alive baby boy. My heart skipped a beat when Steve held him too, and that brief moment of what-might-have-been snuck up on me so that I had to excuse myself for a little cry. But I only felt the tears on two other occasi…

Think Sam liked the beach?

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I'm back!

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We (Steve, Sam and I) spent a few days in beautiful Virginia Beach (we rented a couple of beach houses) with an amazing group of women and their beautiful children. Much chaos and hilarity ensued. It was a good good time.

I was supposed to meet up with Kathy. But our itinerary messed us up on the location and we shot right past her on our way to VA Beach. I'm really sad we didn't get a visit...but now that I've discovered it's not TOO far from home, I hope we can plan a visit sometime in the near future.

I did, apparently, walk right past Lisa P while at a rest stop on the PA turnpike. I didn't see her, but she saw me. Strange, huh? I wish she would have said hi. That would have been a kick in the pants.

I'm ok. We're ok. The animals are ok. The house is ok (still no siding...but I'm a patient person). I have lots to talk about, but the "f" key on my laptop is giving me problems. So I'll post more from work tomorrow.

{{{hugs}}}

It's beginning to look a lot like a bedroom

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I'll be taking a break from blogging for the rest of this week. Big plans. I hope there will be some exciting house updates when I get back.

I wish you all a great week. Take care!

I could be her

I sat across the conference room table as she described the horror of being raped, of miscarrying her very much wanted baby, of losing herself in the "justice" system, of her lifetime of sadness and resulting mental illness. She has obviously carried it around within her heart for decades...it shows on the lines in her face and in I could hear it in the hard edge of her voice. The fear, the sadness, the grief, the anger...all the things she couldn't let go of brought her to this place. Her husband, long since divorced, sat beside her and tried his best to reassure her...to be her strength. But I could see the helplessness on his face...the powerlessness to bring her out of the darkness that she cloaked herself in so many years ago.

As I talked to her openly about her miscarriage and the resulting chaos it created in her life, I silently prayed, "God, don't let this happen to me. And if it does happen to me...please take care of my family."

Yep, I prayed.

I r…

Secret Pal Nine!

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?

First of all, I don't really knit yet. I'm mostly a crochet gal. I have tried my hand at beginner knitting and will probably try it again soon.

I can find a project for just about any kind of yarn, though I do prefer soft stuff to scratchy stuff.

I do NOT like wool because, sadly, I am allergic.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?

I have a crochet hook pouch, but my knitting needles sit at the bottom of a basket in my living room.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?

I have been crocheting since I was about 12. I started with granny squares and have since graduated to all sorts of things. I consider myself intermediate on the pattern reading. But given enough time, I can usually figure it out.

I am a very beginner knitter.

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?

Yes, a…

Happy Columbus Day!

I spent the day with my son...
-eating lunch at mcdonalds while sitting "on the tall chairs"
-shopping for house doors at home depot and lowe's while he hid in the maze of doors on display
-buying him a real toolbox for his toy tools
-shopping at wal-mart for jeans for him and him choosing his own style for the very first time
-stopping for a chocolate milk for him and a chocolate milkshake for me (and him telling me how he didn't want to sit in the car all day to drink it)
-him drinking his chocolate milk and half my chocolate milkshake
-shopping for laundry detergent and lysol at kmart and discussing the possibility of daddy killing me if I spent $10 on a trash can for the bathroom
-searching for quarters and having to buy some beads (oh the hardship) in order to get the change to ride the rides in the center of the mall

My favorite part...

Holding hands in the parking lot, telling him how I love spending days with him like this, "just you and me," and hearing him …

Minor changes

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Most of the home renovation updates lately have been boring little details that aren't really worthy of a photo post. But they tell me that siding and drywall are coming soon...so stay tuned for that. :o)

Jacuzzi tub installed


Sam's tub/shower installed


Electricity


Insulation and baseboard heaters

Hair dye and suspense

As I sat in the waiting area in the salon, I was thinking about my hair and how I wanted it cut. But I was strangely nervous. My palms were sweating and my stomach was in knots. I looked around and wondered what it was that was making me so...fearful.

Then I heard the hairdresser ask the woman in the chair, "So when are you due?" I held my breath. "May," the customer replied with that smile...you know the one...the one that says she's never even considered that something bad could happen to her or her baby.

I wasn't even paying attention and my body had heard and reacted.

May...

I hate May. And here she is eagerly anticipating May.

May...

So she's what? All of five seconds pregnant?

I grabbed a Vogue and tried to concentrate on the latest trends so that I wouldn't have to hear the excited chatter. Thankfully, I didn't have to wait long and I was called over to my hairdresser's chair. I could focus on my hair and nothing else. Except that I could s…

Thank you Cynthia

I plan to make tuna noodle casserole while wearing my new socks today.

Thanks for the laugh.

I wore eyeliner and have no tissues

So of course, I get this wonderfully sweet message today...

Hi Kate,

I hope you don't think this is too weird that I'm writing you. We were on the Due in June (2005) board together -- my B and your Alex were due within a few days of each other. I always felt an extra bit of connection to you then, because your Sam and my E are about the same age too.

Anyway... for some reason, you and Sam and Alex have been in my thoughts a lot lately. I haven't been on SheKnows in a while, but I came back today to check in and see if I could find you. And I did.

I just want to tell you how very, very sorry I am for the loss of your son Travis earlier this year. I know there's nothing I can say to help (and I certainly hope I'm not hurting you more by writing to you).

I just wanted to tell you that I think of you and your boys often. I hope that you're finding some peace.

K

You know, it never ceases to amaze me...the connections that I've made in this life.

Sometimes when I'm d…

No good deed

I'm a relatively smart individual...really. You would think I would learn by now that it is true what they say. No good deed goes unpunished.

As if it's not painful enough to have to shuttle unused baby items from room to room while we have no safe storage space during home renovation. Steve and I decided that the stuff that was intended for Travis should go to charity. That way it goes to someone who could use it and we get a little tax break. Sounds easy enough, right?

So why is it that I can't find anyone who will take the damn stuff?!?!?

I mean, we're talking a brand new crib mattress...still wrapped in the plastic...and a brand new crib set...still wrapped in its original wrap. You would think SOMEBODY would WANT this stuff.

Homesafe, the domestic violence shelter, is not accepting anything at this time. The other local organization (...because I am NOT shipping a mattress...I am kind...but I do have my lmits) is not 501(c)(3) (which really makes me wonder now about t…

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Think Before You Pink

This will become a permanent link on my sidebar. Good information for those who are philanthropically motivated.

Are you KIDDING me?!?!?!

Whoever listed me in this better NEVER reveal themselves to me. I do NOT want imaginary stock in my blog traded in some weird game! This is my space and it is NOT for sale! And I seriously am now considering moving to a password protected service...because this crap makes me ANGRY!

I guess I should feel flattered...but I just don't. My experiences, my words, and my feelings aren't pieces in some game. And I find it appalling that anyone would treat them as such.

So how's that workin' for ya?

I hate Dr. Phil and everything he stands for. BUT, he has this phrase that I have carted around with me since I heard it...

So how's that workin' for ya?

Loosely translated into non-annoying-Texan-speak, it says, "Quit complaining, get off your ass, and DO something. You can bitch and bitch, but it's not going to accomplish anything. The only way to create change is to create change."

So how's that workin' for ya?

Since Alex died, I have been thrown into a tailspin. It's not just the grief and sadness that have caused chaos in my life. It's the complete change in philosophy that came with it. No longer do I control my life...Suddenly, things just happen TO me. Nonsensical things that happen without so much as a warning.

I guess I have always realized that this was the case. But I stuffed it down, refusing to allow it to surface and bring with it all the fear of uncertainty that I knew it would bring. But when Alex died (and again when Travis died), I …

Welcome to the world Baby Tyler!

Congratulations Chan and family!
We're all so very happy for you!

Pumpkins great and small

As I stood in Super Walmart caressing the little pumkins marketed for pie-making (directions printed on a sticky label stuck to the little guys even), I contemplated buying a couple for the cemetery. Jesus Christ! My life is no longer about making a nice pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving...it's about whether this is the perfect pumpkin to take to my dead kids.

So I suppose it was the sight of the little sticky label with pie-making directions that made me deem these particular pumpkins not quite suitable for the dead kid brigade after all.

A couple other things are stuck in my brain with that moment...

Steve saying that we couldn't just buy our carving pumpkin at Walmart because that would take the fun out of it. We had to make our annual trip to the local nursery and wander on the hill, searching for the perfect pumpkin. I remember the fun of the trip last year. At some point, Sam had a meltdown and I shoved him in the minivan while Steve went to pay. It was five months post first d…

To the bug I just squished into oblivion

I'm sorry. But you flew up my nose one too many times. Rest in Peace.

Adoption v. Pregnancy

Time to get some ugly out. I hope people will understand and not judge too harshly. But if you do...I know how to lock comments...and I don't mind doing so. I am in a fragile place right now and I don't need the wrath of the internets. This is my place to work things out for myself...and that is what I'm doing here.

So here's the thing...

I am inherently a selfish person.
I don't want someone else's child.
I want MY children.
I don't want to worry, every single day of my life, that some outsider with a "biological right" (trump card) is going to come into my relationship with my child and throw it off balance.
I want my child to be mine.
Relationships with children are hard enough without adding the constant stress of the adoption "triad."
I don't want a triad.
There is enough failure in raising children.
I don't want to have to worry about failing my child in providing for his/her cultural differences (that I may or may not even unde…

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month

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Each and every day, in communities across America, expectant moms will feel their baby's first kick; parents will listen joyfully to their newborn's first cry; and families will celebrate the birthday of a healthy baby.

Also each and every day, seven babies will be lost to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS); more than 70 new parents will have listened sadly to their stillborn baby's silence; and countless lives will be lost to miscarriage and other sudden, unexpected infant deaths.

October is SIDS, Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, and First Candle is joining forces with individuals, local and national member organizations, as well as corporate and retail partners to increase awareness about these tragic causes of infant death.

www.firstcandle.org
For more information call 1-800-221-7437 (410-653-8226).
Bilingual Crisis Counselors Available 24 Hours a Day

Something for the kids

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Sam would watch this for hours if I let him.

I, of course, want to gouge my ears out with a spoon.



Is it wrong that we both kind of hope that the dog eats Elmo?
(Sam definitely gets a slight mean streak from me.)

But it's worth it for happiness like this...