Tired, just tired

I’m just plain tired of it all…..

the living

The not living

The crying

The dry eyes

The forced laughter

The empty feeling

The longing

The wanting

The loneliness

The hurt

The guilt

The grief

The what if’s

The why me’s

The loss of faith

The loss of me

The endless cycle of emotions

I am just tired

Flowers from Heaven

It has been a horrible few days! Beyond the daily hiccups in life, I have just been missing my Peanut so much. I just want to hear his laughter and footsteps one more time. And not on a video, in real life.

While walking the dog this morning, I walked over where me and Preston had started a late flower garden project months ago. About 2 months ago I found some old flower seed and me and Peanut just went outside and threw them around the tilled up area. And by throw I mean we literally just threw them by the handfuls randomly. These seeds has to have been at least two years old. No way were they going to grow but being the lover of all things floral, I couldn’t throw them away. As I got closer the patch and then I saw it. The prettiest red flower standing tall in the rain with little white ones coming up around it. How in the world after the cold and rain we have had could this flower have sprouted? And being old seeds at that???

I will tell you how. God’s timing. It was meant for me to misplace the seeds after I bought them. It was meant for me to find them when I did. It was meant for me and Peanut to throw them in the garden spot. It was meant to bloom now when God knee I needed some love from Peanut. A sweet little red flower sent at just the right time. God’s timing. And Peanut’s love.

Ecclesiastes 3:2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!

Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! Yes, that’s me stupid! After working the closing shift at work Thursday night, I decided to run in Walmart and grab a few things. I had Friday off so I would get everything I needed real quick and spend the next day in my pajamas. Three minutes into the store, and there was something I could buy for Preston to put under the tree. I stopped myself right as I went to grab it because I remembered. He is not here. Okay, just walk away and go get the hairspray you need. Look something else he would love. Keep walking, look straight ahead. Made it to cosmetics section. And look at that! Paw Patrol chapstick right hanging right where I needed to get my makeup wipes. Grab the wipes just go get your bread and stuff!

Okay in the grocery section. Look at the new Jello molds that make LEGO blocks! Look at the Paw Patrol frozen fruit cups! Wait, does Peanut have enough gummies at home? Oh, he’s not here! Keep pushing the cart, we are almost at the finish line and we can just go home. Everywhere I turn there is more and more that I am so used to grabbing just for him. Just keep pushing. Do not start crying. You can do that in the car. Do not start or else these people are going to think you are crazy. Just grab the daggum bread and go to the register.

At the register finally! Hold it in, hold it in! Do not let that tear fall. Just pay, grab the bags and get to the car. Okay, we have paid. Grab the bags! Hurry! Tears starting to fall. Tell the guy at the door to have a good night too. Why am I worried about being polite when I am falling apart? Made it to the car! Why will this key not unlock the door? Well maybe if you weren’t using the house key it would moron! Door open, bags thrown everywhere, finally sitting in the seat. Head in the steering wheel having a major hissy fit! Get it out. You still have a 40 minute drive home. You stupid stupid woman! Stay out of stores for a while.

Get home. Realize I left a bag at the register! Guess who has to go back to Walmart before work Saturday now? Yea, the stupid one.

Next day….. tired from an exhausting cry. I feel like I may not survive this loss. Get up and make some supper for your family. Clean the house. Get a shower. Starting to feel a little better, getting a little better. Make a mental list of how the next few days need to go. Scroll through Pinterest and save things you know you will never do. Wait to take the next step of the day.

Jeff is home. Let’s eat. He asks what the pin you sent him earlier was. Go through Pinterest saves to find it and BAM! The saved boards for plans you had with Preston. Preston’s room remodel, his bathroom, his playground.

And just like that, nothing was better. I have done this once before, learned to cope and survived. Will I have the strength to do this again?

From broken to shattered

I haven’t posted in a while because I thought my brokenness was healing as much as possible. In 2017, we welcomed our first grandson, Preston James Nelson! What a beautiful life we were blessed with. God had sent us this little angel because he knew this family was sinking under the pressure of losing Richie. He quickly became known as Peanut, Lil Buddy, Stinky, James Leroy and many other names. He didn’t even know to respond to Preston. I became a Granny, Jeff a Grandpa, Luke became an uncle. Our life was coming out of the darkness for the first time in 4 years!

I often felt as if there was any way the cracks in my heart were going to heal it would be because of this sweet boy. I didn’t cry as much. And when I did cry it was because Preston was missing out on his Uncle Richie not me. My mourning went in a different direction. I mourned for the loss of what an amazing uncle he would have been. Savannah was the best Mom! She doted on him and made sure everything was just perfect for him. She gave him Richie’s middle name so he would have a piece of him always. Luke, my Luke, became the Uncle every boy should have. Preston was in the yard getting dirty before he could walk. Luke was his hero! If you could have seen the way Preston got so excited when he heard Jeff come home each day! His little feet would go so fast they never even moved. This baby healed our family. We laughed now! Our how was noisy!!! Our house was scattered from one end to the other with toys! Pure Joy!!!

I can not describe or even begin to explain the joy and pride I had as a Granny. It is all I ever wanted to be in life was to be like my own Granny. And now by the grace of the Lord Almighty I was!

I say was because on October 15th, my sweet little Peanut was murdered. For reasons I am not even sure of (investigation still pending), the last of my heart was completely shattered beyond any repair. I watched my daughter go through a pain that I knew all too well. I could not save her from this tragic heartbreak and pain. I could not save my own son and now my grandson. Talk about feeling like a three strike failure. The only thing worse than watching your own son die is to watch your daughter watch hers die. Watching and knowing there is nothing you can do but hold her hand and watch.

At 8:23 pm on October 16, Preston was pronounced. October 16, what was his Uncle Luke’s birthday. A day that I was supposed to be watching Luke and his Little Buddy eating cake, riding on the Polaris and pretending to hunt.

Why God Why!!!!????? Why our family again? And to lose a 21 month old to murder?! I have been walking around scared to even try to comprehend any of this. Do I want to know the answers? Yet can I live without the answers? I feel as if there is a belt around my heart that keeps getting tighter and tighter each day. I pray. I thank the Lord for the time I had. Bless the Lord’s heart, he must think I am the most messed up minded person he ever made. (I hope he broke the mold after he made me) I cry, scream, question, praise, thank, rejoice and show every emotion in one prayer multiple times a day. I just cannot even begin to understand any of this. Why Preston who was the most happy toddler in the world? Everyone that met him became instantly in love with him.

So now I am a broken Mother, a broken Granny and just broken. Please pray for our family as we make sense of this tragedy. God Bless you all.

I hate our friendship!!!

I have a best friend. And I hate our friendship.

I love my best friend more than she will ever know! And I hate our friendship.

The smallest, most intricate details of the way we became friends could only have been woven by God himself. And I hate our friendship.

I can tell her things I wouldn’t dare tell anyone else. And I hate our friendship.

She is my my life raft when I am sinking. And I hate our friendship.

I can’t imagine her not being in my life ever. And I hate our friendship.

We met because our boys died. And I hate our friendship.

We are friends because our hearts have been fractured forever. And I hate our friendship.

We would both trade our friendship to have our boys back in the blink of an eye. I hate we didn’t get to meet because our boys were friends here. I hate we didn’t meet under happier circumstances. I hate that we share a pain the is almost unbearable. I hate that we wonder if the boys are friends in heaven. I hate that I have come to love her son as my own yet I have never met him. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it.

I wish beyond words we weren’t drawn together out of pain instead of joy. But I am so glad that with this pain she brings me joy. Even though I hate our friendship!

Joyfully Hurt

Tonight I was texting with my best friend and to her summed up our hearts. She, like I lost her precious son also and is trying to navigate emotions through this grief journey. And here is what we talked about:

How do we explain our feelings when life goes on around us without our sons? We are very happy for our son’s friends when they get graduate college, get married, have a child or have a huge life event. But while we are happy, we still have that what if in our minds. What if Richie were the one becoming a father? What if Zack was the one that was watching his bride walk down the aisle? All the plans we have built in our hearts and minds for them are now but dreams that drift away as our eyes flutter open each morning. Only to escape as we reach for the alarm clock with a tear running down our cheek because that dream will never be. And they are always just that, dreams.

So I told her that my heart joyfully hurt during these times. Joyful for the happiness that his friend’s have found. But hurt for the dreams that I have lost in the blink of an eye. Joyfully hurt. Joyful. Hurt. Forever broken-hearted but trying to let the cracks fill with some love and laughter. Joyfully hurt.

Wth Jesus? Wth?!?!?

Lately, all I can do is think, Wth Jesus! Wth were you thinking giving me this life? I know that we are not given more than we can handle by you but WTH? Am I really this superwoman you believe I am? Why must my life be spent living happy moments under the veil of grief that covers me? Why did you choose me for this particular life? Wth? Is it because you knew I could put on a brave face for everyone else? Do you know that under that apparent brave face is a hollowed out space of nothingness? A space where I do not know what I really feel at any real moment? It is just a space where I hide myself to keep any real emotions or feelings from showing. A space where I have learned to live with private tears, private hurts, loneliness and sorrow. Torn between wanting to run from it all and being drawn back to the ones I have to take care of. Never stop running. Run from people, places and things. Run until everything goes away and no one knows me. Where no one knows this brave face. Where I can be the me I want to be. Just run until I shed off all the expectations of the ones I love, of the people watching. Just run until this life falls off my shoulders and I become so light I can fly with the dragonflies. Am I destined to always be here where I have to do what is right for others and not for myself? To be black on the inside while fake rainbows beam from the outside? Wth? Wth? Wth? Just let me run!

My Aarons and Hurs

While in this mornings Bible study, I was reading in Exodus 17: 8-16. It is about how Joshua was fighting Amalek. Moses went up the hill and help the rod of God in his hands. While his hands were up, Joshua was winning. While down, he was losing. Moses hands grew tired and weary. Aaron and Hur brought a  rock for him to sit on. Then they helped hold his hands up. They held his hands up until Amalek was defeated.

This made me sit and ponder the friends that surround me. The friends that have been with me in my life since losing Richie. I have had to keep my hands, head and heart raised God for help just to see me through each day. There are many many times when I just get tired. Days where I just want to throw in the towel and ask God why should I even bother with tomorrow. But then a friend, one of my closest friends, that know my heart and deepest feelings will come along and be my Aaron. Be my Hur. They give me a stone to sit upon and hold my hands up high enough for God to grab hold of me.

That is the most special quality about my friends, my Aarons and Hurs. They aren’t just there for the laughs, shopping, food, fun and gossip. They are there to hold me up and wipe my tears. They are there to hold my hands up to God when I can’t even lift my head. They pray for me even before I ask. They help me keep one foot in front of the other and my eyes on God and His Word.

I have many friends. But I treasure my Aarons and Hurs.

This mornings Bible study was from the July 5th Our Daily Bread. It can be found at http://odb.org/

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 3 Days

In 3 days, my first born son will be 23 years old. In 3 days, I will not be able to tell him Happy Birthday. In 3 days, he will be celebrating his birthday in heaven. In 3 days, it will mark the 3rd birthday he has had without me. In 3 days, I pray that I make it through the day.

Work and Grief

A friend of mine that lost her son shortly after I lost mine has been going through total heck at work. She was only given two weeks leave after the passing of her only son. Since she has been back to work, there are days where she has had to call in because grief had consumed her to the point that she could not get out of the bed. She has decided to leave her job after one too many inconsiderate write-ups over her actions. T (as I will call her) asked if I would help write her resignation letter for her. She thought I could help her put into words exactly what grief has done to her. Us. And all the mourning parents.

The request had me thinking of the best thing to say. How to exactly describe what we go through. How do you explain to someone that has never lost a child what it feels like to have a piece of your soul lost forever? How do explain how your heart never will beat the same way it used to? How do you let them know that grief does not pick non-business hours to rear its ugly head? I do not think there is any way to really get the full impact of having so much of your life disappear in the blink of an eye. Sure we may have been fine when we left work on Tuesday. But the dream we had that night of our child made us wake up thinking that he was just down the hall in his bed. And then realizing we woke from our dream to the nightmare of reality. Yes we were just fine when we left for lunch. But while in the car at the drive-thru our child’s favorite song came on the radio, leaving us crying hysterically and cars honking their horns at us. Then there are birthdays, holidays, anniversaries of death and life. What about the sadness we feel when our child’s friends accomplish all the things he should be here for? We not only grieve the past and present but also the lost future. We will grieve when we see our friends with their grandchildren we were robbed of. We will grieve when we watch his best friend walk down the aisle without our son as his best man. We will grieve every empty space at the dinner table, the empty stocking, the quiet nights, the missing sound of laughter and all the messy messes that we desperately miss.

How do you put a time on how much work you can miss after the loss of a child? When you give birth you are given at least six weeks maternity leave. They even give the same amount to Fathers now! But only to receive two weeks bereavement time to mourn the loss of 19 years worth of hopes and dreams? It takes two weeks just to come out of the shock and fog! There is no textbook example of grief time because no one person grieves the same as another. Some can handle day to day routines like before with a hard exterior. Some will crack in public over random thoughts. Some will never get on with life. Some will tackle life and grieve quietly in the inside. I guess I was lucky that I did not have to return to any sort of job after I lost my son. I never really sat back and thought about the pain and hardship that my son’s Father, his Bonus Mom or my Husband felt. So how do I try and help her explain this to her employers? There is no possible way for them to understand shy of them losing their own child. And there is no way I would ever wish this torturous pain on anyone…

grief1