Monday, March 14, 2016

16 months and counting ....

As a widow for the last 16 months now, I've learned a lot, I've made mistakes, I've had great triumphs and many blessings, I have even laughed a lot! The one thing that still affects me though, is the overwhelming sense of feeling isolated and alone. I'm normally very outgoing, and chatty, and a big goober, but lately I'm feeling insecure, inadequate and overwhelmed. I think this is true with a lot of people in my case - and trying to carry the load of two parents for six children hasn't been that easy. I forget things, like starting a load of laundry late Saturday night so my son has clean clothes for church on Sunday morning, only to realize that I don't have any detergent anywhere in my house. So it required a late night run to Walmart to buy detergent.

Dinners happen whenever I feel the urge to actually cook. And then I get cool mom points if the kids actually eat it. I forget to call the school when my child has been sick, and then if I forget too many times I get the letter from the school that sheds major light onto my future ... yes, then I jump into this needs to be taken care of mode and everything else can wait. Or I'm not on my game to check that the teen car has gas in it when they leave, because I don't drive that car, and then have to go and "Rescue" the kids before it's a real rescue. Losing a debit card, because I was lazy and put it in my pocket instead of my purse/wallet and it fell out somewhere in the HOGLE ZOO - yeah not one of my better moments, but I won't tell you that it wasn't my first time losing the card, but it was my first time losing it at the zoo.

I've gone on a few trips with my kids and we've survived. I'm not sure how, and not sure why but we did, and those have been some of the best memories yet. I'm glad, because my kids need good memories to replace some not so great ones.

I get tired A LOT! I get BORED sometimes, and I only have so much energy to do things with and for the kids before I need to be recharged.

I have moments where I cry! The major ugly crying! ANd I have no reason why except that I'm feeling the pains of no one to talk to or be with at that moment. And the crazy thing is, it will always hit way late at night and I can't do anything about it anyway. So I have a good cry and then wake up the next day and push forward.

I'm trying to create dreams and plans for my life, but sometimes I think the easiest way is to just "ROLL" with it. I find more happiness in just being in the moment rather than looking too far ahead at what should/could/ will happen.

I've had dark moments, moments that I don't know what I was feeling, moments where I was extremely happy, and moments where I feel intense love from my father in heaven.

This journey isn't yours, but it is mine. I'm trying to handle it with dignity and strength, but sometimes, you lose sight of what's really important because lets face it, we're still human and mortal and have imperfect thoughts, and actions however, big or little they may be. What is important is that we strive to continually make course corrections no matter how little to get it going in the right direction so we end up where we want to be. It's so easy to get distracted, but as soon as we realize it, we are free to get back on task and make progress again.

Along the way we'll have people that point fingers at us, or we have people leave our lives, and as sad as that can be sometimes, there are better things ahead. It's all about faith! And for me it's a huge test right now. And I'm doing the best I can. What I need are people who encourage me, people who support me - no matter how dumb my ideas are, people who will laugh with me and not just at me, I need people who will uplift me and make me want to keep continuing, people who will cry with me when that is needed, people who offer an evening away for a sanity break, I need people who will say HI, and smile when you see me out and about. I need people who will love me for who I am and not judge me based on what I'm not doing right in your eyes. I need people who will step up and help out with my kids and make them feel loved and appreciated to. I need people who

I have found love again, and though it hasn't been easy to start over, it's been so worth it. Because we are two imperfect people trying to build a new relationship, and it takes time, energy and effort to make something last. It feels good to have someone who loves me, and just his sheer presence makes me HAPPIER, and I feel so awesome and good when we're together. It's a journey and I'm finding ways to enjoy it as I go along. And reasons to laugh - like keeping a red-box movie or two for about three weeks and then having to pay that crazy fine. See - I'm not perfect, I'm not beating myself up, but I do have a great red charger I can hop in and drive if I get feeling to overwhelmed and frustrated!

So those who want to know how I'm really doing? I'm doing okay! I have great days, and terrible days and everything in between. I try to find humor in everyday and laugh. My kids are doing okay! Same applies to them. I do think that losing their dad at a young age has propelled them into being very responsible people a lot sooner. They are still pesky goobers that make a lot of noise and never like what I make for dinner, and leave trash every where but I love them and they are all that I'm trying to survive for. So I don't have a plague, I'm not disturbed (well mostly I'm not), but I am just like you but with a very tender and sometime sad heart. I'm not scary to approach, and I have no problem talking about my story. Ask my kids how they are doing, because they have been suffering from this too.

I have a few goals, I have some ideas, and I'm trying bit by bit to make a life happen for myself that I can look back on and know I didn't waste any opportunity. Now I won't indulge in eating exotic foods, but it would be nice to travel someday and hopefully I can make that a reality. But on my own - NO WAY! With any or all kids - NO WAY! At least not until they are grown.

Now that I've wasted the last hour of your life while you waded through my jumbled words carry on and remember you don't know what anyone else is really struggling with, so try not to judge someone based on how they interact with you.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Looking back but moving forward...

Sorry it's a long one!!

I have to say that through this last year, I have felt very weak at times, wanting to give up at others, and feeling extremely overwhelmed by all the tasks that I was now solely responsible for.

And as annoying as it got to hear so many people tell me how strong I was and that I was an inspiration to them for how I was dealing with things in my life under the current situation, I didn't see it, I didn't feel it - but deep down that's what kept me afloat when I was all but sinking.  My struggles have been real and they have been hard, they've been emotional, spiritual, and physical.  And when you feel like your whole world was yanked from under your feet trying to find solid ground again becomes difficult.  At times it doesn't feel possible.  I'm not perfect, I struggle with lots of things, but I try to be a good person and do what's right and when I realize I've gotten of course, I do what's needed to make those course corrections.

I have friends right now facing their own struggles.  One's I don't want! One's I think are very TOUGH compared to mine.  But if I could make their burdens any lighter I would in a heartbeat.

My wish is for everyone to not be so quick to pass judgement on someone else.  That person might just be having some real struggles going on that you know nothing of, and they might be a pivotal point where your actions towards them, or your words said aloud to them can push them over the edge if they aren't kind words.  We need to look for the good in others. After all we are all children of a loving heavenly father - who loves us and we should love him.

If it wasn't for everyone who has prayed and might be praying still for my kids and I - I'd for sure be swallowed up in the massive depths of despair and loneliness never to surface and be social and helpful ever again.  I know I say I have to do everything alone now that Chris has been gone for over 14 months, but really I know I'm not doing it alone.  Sometimes my vision gets clouded over and I don't exactly see the help from others.  Sometimes it's just a simple comment, a smile, or a hug - or leaders and friends that do so much for my children that I can't do.

The burden has been heavy at times, until I reach heavenward and invoke the powers of the atonement to help ease the pains and grief that I'm experiencing.   Even as I write this, my eyes are drenched with tears knowing where I was when this all happened and where I am now and where I'm headed still.

Everyday we have a chance to make a difference and I'm so grateful that so many of you have reached out to me right when it was needed.  Loosing a spouse (or any loved one) isn't easy with or without the gospel.  But with the gospel it is more bearable and becomes easier to carry that load. Just because you might be a good person doesn't mean "bad or terrible" things aren't going to happen.  It's how you deal and handle it that defines who you are.

I was feeling weak, very weak for awhile, but I feel I've found my footing again and am pressing forward with a steadfastness in Christ and holding firm to the rod that will take me back to my heavenly father, and I hope that along the way I can help others that are struggling. I know the realness of it, and how easy it is to slip into not thinking its worth it, but you know what it is!

Life is worth living and it's our privilege to be here!  We have bad times and hard days but we're not designed to be sad and depressed because things aren't going according to plan.  And if it's not going according to your plan then maybe that's the lords way of saying I have a different plan for you.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Friday's Myths and Facts _1

Today I sit and wonder about a lot of things! 

MYTH:  I've observed some things since I've moved into our new home in Santaquin just four months ago.  In my head I pictured that the house would not have trash laying about because of my children. I thought they would magically clean up after themselves and that all remnants of anything resembling trash would end up in the garbage can.  

FACT: Said kids leave said trash around said house.  
MYTH: In my head I imagined that my front room which is termed the piano room would remain my CLEAN and TIDY all the time room. We'd reserve it for chilling in the evenings, and when visiting teachers or friends come over that want a fun room to visit in. 

FACT: Said room is the first stop in the door and said kids above leave their things in there all the time.  Right now there are throw blankets all over the room.  It'd take like five - seven minutes to tidy the whole room up but what am I doing first?  That's right entertaining myself and pumping myself up for a day full of more tasks like that.
MYTH: I thought I'd never fall down my own stairs because I'd always hold onto the rail as I'm going up or coming down. 

FACT:  Just a few weeks ago I ended up with a sore bum because I was being productive and cleaning trash from my room because I had a late night snack and then fell asleep the night before.  I didn't have a free hand because it was more than one late night snack and right at the bottom of the stairs  BUMP, thump and CRASH.  Needless to say I now take more time coming down but going up I climb it like a stinking monkey. I'm using my hands on the stairs ahead of me and crawling up them like I'm an animal.  (My dog Lexie beats me every time)
MYTH: I thought I'd be parking in my garage that is attached to my house.  I've never had a home with this setup and was really excited for it. 

FACT: Because of my own doing and wanting to clear space on the inside of the home we moved ALL the boxes and STUFF that we moved in to our house into the garage.  I was only parking in the garage for a few days before I banished my own vehicles from using that space as I had intended.  Now it's on my to do list ASAP because of my pretty new car that I want parked in there.  But these days I have the  motivation of a snail and seem to move very slowly. Maybe it's just the January blues, or maybe I just suck, either way I know it needs to be cleared out.  And half of my mind wants to just load it up and throw it ALL AWAY.  I don't even care what it is. I just want it gone.  But the other half of me thinks that maybe I'll find hidden money in mass quantities and should check every box in there!   Wishful dreaming I know but still it's something I struggle with. 
MYTH: I thought after Chris died a little over 14 months ago that no man in his right mind would ever want to take on my situation, that being a widow with six kids.  But I was hopeful but not too hopeful back then. 

FACT: Actually there is a man that I have in my life and I love him more than anything. He has come along right when I needed him, and he's helping bring balance back to my life. And I hope that I can do the same for him.  My kids all adore him and he likes all of them and thinks that they are amazing kids.  (Sometimes they aren't though).  Sometime to be determined we'll start a life together, but until then I'm cherishing all the moments we have together and coming up with dreams and plans for the new family unit we'll be in the near future. 


Stay tuned for next Friday's edition.  I had so much fun with this one, and feel a little bit of my stress and frustrations relieved that I think I'll continue this for an unidentifiable amount of time.  Which means this could be the only one, or it might not.  

Monday, August 24, 2015

I've made it 9 plus months as a widow

I think it's time for an update on my life as a widow:

So, I am almost 9 and half months out and I've sold my previous two vehicles replaced them with two different ones. Have a Tahoe that I love!

I've registered my kids in new schools closer to where we'll be living hopefully soon. I've signed papers back in February for having a new home built that we would want to move into. I've been dealing with all the ups and downs of the home building process which include delays, seeing visible progress and getting excited when the flooring was laid and I had most of a kitchen put in.

I've kept my kids alive. Showers, and enough sleep, and whether they had decent food to eat were always optional. (Hey I can't do everything!) they had plenty of amazing friends to play with and make memories with.

I decided to purchase a projector for the awesome use of watching movies outdoors. Guess who's house will rock next summer in Santaquin? That's right our house!

I have decided to go back to school and that starts in September. I've also decided to take a LONG trip with my kids to California in October and to attend an all school reunion for TRONA high school. And follow that up with a few days at Disneyland and a trip to the beach! I ordered a rack for the hitch of my tahoe and the big 15 sq ft of space bag that can be used to go with it for use on this specific trip.

I've also taken my kids camping right alongside their Aund and Uncle and cousins. There are things I'm doing that I never thought I could have done all those months ago. Here I am doing them. I'm living them. I'm coming up with my new plans and goals. I'm drawing myself to Christ and to God, and rely on them for daily strength. Sometimes I am not sure how the heck I make it from one day to the next or even minute to minute, but somehow I am. And I know it's because of my faith.

I've taken a spontaneous overnight trip out of state and left my kids overnight by themselves ... I can still be a human and do things. Which is exactly what I want to do. I've met a lot of different people along this journey, and from some I have learned alot and pull tremendous strength from and others,.... they have weeded themselves out of my life. And that's okay to. I know that those who are supposed to be in my life will stick around and those that don't will go away. (I might have to force them to leave, but I'm not scared to say such a thing if needed)

I've had a few "learning experiences" in the dating scene that has awakened my sense of awareness that I know what is necessary and what isn't. It's easy for Satan's influence to take over if you let it. Luckily I've risen from those mistakes and am a better person because of it.

So many times I feel like I was short changed in this life experience. Because Chris isn't here to experience it with me. But his time was up and he isn't required to be here for the next phase of my life. But I realize that even though he's not here doesn't mean that he doesn't love me any less and that he doesn't love our children any less. This whole dang experience has made me grow in ways that would not have been possible with him still beside me. But I know that I NEED to keep living life and enjoying it. Because if I just sit in misery from here on out because I'm choosing to, then shame on me. And he won't be too happy with me because of it. I often times feel like my life has had the ultimate challenge, but you know what ... I'd gladly take this over my friends challenges. I think mine is worse but in many ways it's a piece of cake ... I have a friend serving time in prison for mistakes and this friend has lost their freedom. I still have my freedom. This friend misses out on their family, and I still have my family. I've read stories from other widows/widowers where financially things are so much worse for them. I am in a really great place financially for the time being. Some people have lost everything they had and have to start over from scratch.... I'm willingly giving up things I have just so I can start fresh. I have friends that have had to live with family because things haven't worked out for them to be independent when they want to be. I've experienced friends who have wanted to have children and have not been blessed with that opportunity, when I know deep down they would be absolutely wonderful parents. And I've had the opportunity to have six. I've been richly blessed. I have known people who are so physically ill they can't do anything and I may have a thyroid disease but I can still do things. I sometimes might pay for it for a few days but I can still do stuff. I have a friend who was paralyzed in high school and has been in a wheelchair and this friend inspires me everyday. They have lost the abiltiy to walk and run and typical things like that but they still move on. I have my mobility still.

Everywhere I look, I feel someone else has it worse than me! Yes, my house may look like 6 category F5 hurricanes may have run through here and FEMA hasn't shown up to clean up. So if you see my house as a wreck -- blame it on them. :)

Simply put I am one woman who loves my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and turn to them for my strength. I knew when this first happened that it was more than I could do alone. Yes, you'll see my eyes fill with tears and then run down my face, if your see me drive in my car I sometimes BAWL and let it out (sorry if you experience that sight). I am a solo parent here on Earth trying to raise my 6 beautiful, amazing, wonderful children that can also frustrate me to no end. I can't live with them but don't want to live without them until they finish high school. Trying to figure everything out alone is difficult but I've always been ambitious in getting things figured out and getting them done. Plans don't always go according to how I hope but the end result still happens. And that, my friends, is the biggest lesson I've learned to date. That even though I had a plan and wanted it to go a certain way, Heavenly Father had a different path for my life, but the end result is still the same. So as long as I'm still moving in the general direction as best as I can, I am enough with their help. I don't want to do this, but I can do this.

I've had to settle the waves of grief in all of my children and it breaks my heart that they are going through this too. We're not perfect - far from it, but I'm trying to do my best and just relying on mercy from my heavenly father to make up the difference where I have fallen short.

I've also been able to get back into getting physically fit again, I've come a long way but still not there just yet.

I feel cut off from friends that I had prior to Chris's death. I feel isolated sometimes. And I realized that being alone isn't good for me, I need people. So I make it a point to talk with other humans and get out of my house every day if I can. I want to be an influence for good in my life, just not sure how to go about that yet.

9 months out and several years in front of me. Things aren't going to be easy but I think I'm finally learning that they aren't meant to be. Only through our trials can we stretch and really grow and learn who it is that we're to be and become.

I don't know why this has been my trial, but I want to embrace it because I know it could be worse. And I don't need worse for me right now.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Happy Easter - almost 5 months out

So here I am almost 5 months out since my life was turned upside down.  A lot has happened.  A lot is still the same as it can be without him here.  

I've had moments where I can't believe people can be so mean.  I've had moments where I've been completely happy.  This isn't a black and white journey anymore.  Actually it never was.  I can be happy and get ambushed by a wave of emotions and I can be utterly feeling like all hope is lost and then someone comes along and makes me feel like that isn't the case.  

I've had a few more firsts that I've experienced without Chris.   On St. Patty's day I fell off my back steps in the process of rolling my ankle.  I cried. My phone went flying and I was more worried about it then myself for a few seconds at least.  But I still took my kids bowling that night and they loved it.  It was a lot of fun.  

I ended up playing in a basketball tournament game later that week too.  And the last few years he was there in my cheering section. He was my one fan.   And this year wasn't that way.  I did have fun though.  

I've been hitting up the local rec center so I can workout 3 - 4 times a week. And I'm loving how I feel once again.  I really don't know why I got off this wagon years ago.  But I'm back and it's here to stay.  

I've also had a few dates in the last month as well.  Two great men, and lots of laughs and fun times.  It feels good to get out and do something with a male adult! Oh my gosh, I sure wish that life wasn't so unfair to people.  So many different challenges and trials that people have to face and I keep wondering which one isn't so bad?  Which one is the easy trial or challenge?   But I've come to realize that they all stink.  Just because I feel like the one I'm in is the ultimate awful one of losing the love of your life, there are others out there that are being tested to their capacity in different ways. 

I was blessed with a kind, loving and compassionate heart and hearing of people that I care about or those that I just meet and the things they have to deal with really make me empathize with them and I wish I could take away all their hurt and pain.  

This weekend is General Conference and this is the first one without him.  It's been really different and the Saturday morning session was really hard.  I know that we're sealed and will be with each other in the next life but it doesn't make the rest of this one any less lonely.  Today is also Easter.  He was the one that took care of prepping for Easter and not having him here really stinks.   Not having anyone here stinks.   But I guess so goes the course of my life.  I'm such a people person and thrive on that and not having another person around to talk with and share my feelings with is hard.   The lack of affection, is hard.  All those things that you might take for granted you really start to miss.  And even the things that I didn't take for granted I miss as well.  

The kids and I are taking a trip this Spring Break and it's going to be the first road trip without him too.  It will be nice to get away though, I need to rejuvenate my mind and my goals and purpose for being here now. Because what I thought it was before he died is no longer what it is now.  

But since it's Easter I am feeling so much more different about the resurrection. And know that because of Jesus Christ's atonement he overcame death.  And that because of him, my family is eternal.  But knowing all of that still doesn't make the here and now a whole lot easier.   I still have the load of two people fall on just my shoulders.  I keep hearing rely on your friends and family.  Well, it's easier said than done.  I don't want to be a burden on anyone else, and if someone really wants to help then I feel like they can just freely offer and I can accept or decline.   I know that life isn't over when someones earthly life is over.  It is hard to want to go on, but I also know it's worse to sit back and chose to live in the past.  My immediate future is looking great and I'm choosing to be happy. But because of others occasionally my happiness level is reduced.  But on the same token if I feel like I need to cry and get the tears out and the frustration and stresses I don't hold back either.  Yesterday was one of those days.  And my car works as a great privacy sound barrier and I can sound as awful as I need to and nobody can hear me. 

I will cheerfully persevere.  It's not going to be easy but if I can find ways to be happy in the moment all of the sudden I can look back and realize that I made a whole week, or month and was happy.   And this last month has been just that.  I've been happy.  There were a few rough moments but just a few and they didn't last very long.   I'm really glad that I do have two new friends that I can talk to if I need it.  And they are fine with it.  It makes me feel like someone else cares and I can get it out of my system and not keep talking to walls here in my own house.  I am realizing the value of GOOD friends again.  I've gone so many years having Chris as my one GOOD friend but I realize that he's not an option now.  And finding others that aren't going to make me feel bad because of my situation are priceless right now. 

Happy Easter

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

4 months out ...

So as my life has been going on for the last four months I've had some great things happen, and still happening.  

We have committed to buying and building a house in Santaquin. Hopefully it will be finished by July/August before school starts back up.  It's going to be nice to be somewhere to get a fresh, new start and continue to live life, being happy and helpful to others around me and my family.   We are excited about the bigger house and the new location.   Things are so much slower paced down there, and it still keeps me close to family and friends as needs arise and I need help.  

We're planning a trip to St. George over spring break which will be right after General Conference and Easter.  I need to get away and go somewhere for a change of scenery.  And this will accomplish that.  The kids and I will have a blast I'm sure.  Now to find where I put the printout for the reservations we made.  haha.   

In October we'll be heading to Disneyland!   I'm so excited about that.  Hopefully I don't regret doing this especially being myself with six kiddos.   I must already be insane to attempt something so crazy like this.  But it will give the kids some happy memories and great times with their cousins just a month shy of the 1 year mark.

I hope to take them camping a few times over the summer, but in the midst of packing up this house, I'm not sure how easy it will be.  We've got girls camp in June,  Day camp for Thomas, Youth Trek in July... it's going to be interesting to see how I can make things work out. 

And the most exciting part in my life is that I met someone!  Well I actually meet lots of people, but this person, he is special.   I've had a great time getting to know him, and meeting him in person since we met online.  We've hit it off really well and I haven't laughed so hard in a long, long time.   He helps me feel alive and excited about life again.  It's nice to have someone to care about, and who cares about me.  The kids have met him, and the boys are really excited.  (Probably because he's a pilot, and the boys like his truck)

It's amazing how I never thought I'd be in this spot only 4 months out.  I've made a choice not to be so sad about everything anymore.  I'm done with that part. I want to live life and be happy and that means moving forward.  Sometimes I can't go quite as fast as I'd like because of the kids.  But when I'm planning and doing things I'm so much happier.  So now I'm trying to dig out of the "I don't care" attitude that I had for the first three months and now I'm climbing up and forward once again.   

I know that there will be times when I'll be overcome with emotion in the upcoming days, weeks or months and even throughout the years, but I know that I'm done living in the past thinking of things I've lost or won't be able to do, or for the simple fact that Chris isn't here anymore.   I know he doesn't want me to be sad. He wasn't a sad person and he made me laugh a lot, and (made me frustrated a lot too).   But he doesn't want me to be alone and he doesn't want me to be sad, So I'm choosing to not be sad anymore. And it's almost a miracle that I met such an amazing man so soon.  It's going to be interesting to watch and see where this goes.   It's refreshing and fun to have a special person in my life again.  And this man's hugs are the best!  I really enjoy the time that we get to spend together, and we might have to get creative in the future as to how we can spend time together But if this is meant to be things will just "work" out in a sense.  That's how it's always been for me, and I can only hope that it continues with this situation to.   

I haven't been this happy in such a long time.  I haven't laughed so hard and had a smile plastered to my face in a really long time.  It's fun to have this kind of excitement in my life.  He's a really great guy, and has had his own challenges, but who doesn't.   I'm excited and look forward to getting to know him better.  Maybe it's true that they say great things are still to come.   

I saw a quote the other day that I really liked
" If life can remove someone that you never dreamed of losing,
It can replace them with someone you never dreamt of having."  

I feel completely comfortable with him, and I feel peace about this whole thing.  So for now, I'm going with it.  I find myself deeply smitten with him, and enjoy being with him and talking with him.   It's all good right now.   Crossing my fingers it can stay this way. 

Monday, February 2, 2015

When Destiny Calls ...

Life is so surreal.  I keep thinking that he'll be coming home any minute, and when he's not here by the normal get home from work time I still start to worry about him and whether he's alright or if he's gotten into an accident or something.  It's so crazy!  I think I'm starting to enter a numb phase again, this cycle of emotions is not fun, nor wanted.  (at least not on a repeat cycle) 

It's hard having my life turned upside down out of the blue. Having to rethink plans, come up with new dreams, set new goals, take on extra responsibilities and watching every thing around me fall to chaos.  Not so much because I want it to, but I really have no desire to change it right now.  I feel like I'm in a huge body of water and waves are just hitting me left and right and I'm having a hard time staying a float. And catching my breath in between the crushing waves. 

And for those wondering if life is "back to normal" - we weren't normal before and we really aren't normal now.  We're still learning to adjust, and some moments it's all I can do to just survive.  Here I've almost made it three months without him and I never saw myself here.  It's a long time to be without someone you love so dearly and deeply.  Every day passes and I realize even more and more how amazing he was beyond what I new and felt when he was alive.  

I haven't really made food in the last three months, I've been good to keep snacks and fresh fruit and veggies on hand and my kids have helped themselves, and thanks to families in my neighborhood and ward we've had plenty of meals brought in so we haven't starved.  I just don't seem to have the drive I had before, but I guess that's normal too. 

Everyone seems to have all the answers for me.  Apparently I'm supposed to just shake it off and be okay. Well, it doesn't work like that.  And right now, I might seem okay but don't hold it against me if I'm not okay in 5 minutes.  I feel like everyone wants to walk on eggshells around me, I just want to feel like I fit in still, but in some ways I feel like I don't and I never will.   Trying to carve out "my space" is consuming all of my time, but even then I have to suck up the creation of me and focus on my kids. 

They are doing well, mostly.  I'm pulling my second oldest out of public school and enrolling her in the Provo school districts e-school.  Hopefully we'll finish that up tomorrow, getting her withdrawal complete that is.  The other kids are still attending as usual, but I can't help but feel that sometimes I'm not going to be enough to get them ready for what lays ahead.  How can I?  I don't even know what lays ahead.  Thank goodness I have wise, church leaders that are concerned for and care about us. 

Lonely is the all encompassing word to describe what I feel, and saying "I miss Chris" is the all encompassing phrase that describes how I feel about him being in the next phase of life.  I keep a family photo in my living room and I look at it often, and if it weren't for the photo, I think I'd start to forget what he looks like. 

I had an experience tonight that was kind of sweet and brought more tears amongst the ones of missing him that I was already producing.  I said out loud that I need you Chris, and when I sat in the car with tears streaming down my face, a song came on the radio that I know wasn't a coincidence. 

It was Phil Collins You'll Be in my Heart - 
   There was a part that says,
 "When destiny calls you
You must be strong
I may not be with you
But you've got to hold on
They'll see in time I know
We'll show them together.

'Cause you'll be in my heart
Believe me,you'll be in my heart (I'll be there)
From this day on
Now and forever more."

There were parts that specifically spoke to me and I know that he tries to communicate to me through music. Then it says "Just look over your shoulder, just look over your shoulder ..."  and you know what I looked over my shoulder and there was my sweet little Esther sleeping in the car.