Apr 22, 2011

Good Friday

It has been an exhausting couple of days. I'm writing to you from KC, Missouri. My aunt, who's fight with cancer ended on 4/18, was laid to rest today. It's been a bizarre experience to say the least. After the fracture of her & my mom's relationship as sisters happened sometime in the early 90's, my own memories of her have faded, much to my dismay. To the best of my ability, this is what I remember:
I remember the her house in Indiana. I remember the rural-ness of that tiny town where my grandparents lives also. I remember my cousin (who is just 2 years younger than me) getting on the school bus when we were visiting on different school holidays. I remember her house being damp & cold in the winter. I remember she would turn her oven on, open the door and lay out Kimberly's school clothes on the door to warm them up. I remember gathering at her house after the passing of my grandpa and the three of them (my mom, Aunt Barb & Aunt Lou) sitting there with coffee and recalling their own memories, most of which weren't pleasant of their own childhood. I was too involved with playing dolls and other girlish things that I never stopped to inhale those moments and keep them forever in my mind. I remember my aunt telling some strange stories of her experiences as an EMT. The very grossness of which intrigued me and I don't know why.
My relationship with my mom has always been on the unconventional side. I was close with her to a certain extent up until my rebellious adolescence entered the picture. Our relationship has seen it's ups and downs and finally at the age of 23 or so, I accepted that I would never have the mom I wanted and also realized that she did the best she could for me with what she had. I began to see her as a woman who was scarred by a very dysfunctional family and as a woman who loved me the best way she knew how. There is just one thing I don't think I will ever come to understand. My mom becomes a different creature when grieving the loss of someone she loves. I don't know if she's trying to be stoic or what but she keeps me at an arm's length emotionally. She can't be vulnerable with me, her own daughter but she can with her other sister, her nephew, her friends, or whomever.  Maybe it's just all in my head & I could be totally off base with my perception. However, I have experienced this with her on quite a number of occasions. When my grandpa died in '92, when my grandma died in '99, when my Uncle whom she was also estranged from died in '06. It's like the grief inhabits her emotions and it takes years to fade away.
There were two reasons I came to MO for my aunt's funeral. The first reason is to be supportive of my mom who left my house in September for her sister's house here in MO to see to her care and chaperon her on the daily commutes to the hospital for chemo & radiation treatments. My mom came back just once for a short period of time and immediately left when she found out that Lou would be going back to chemo treatments again. She is the one who spent hours taking care of Lou's every need. She stayed at the hospital with her and spent countless nights in an uncomfortable pull-out chair/bed. When hospice was called in, she & my Aunt Barb spent the rest of the days in the guest quarters at the hospital until Lou took her last breath. My cousin Kimberly was the only person in the room and I think Lou waited until it was just the two of them together.
The other reason I came was to pay respects to the aunt I knew and also to give what comfort I could to Kimberly. It hurts my heart to see that she won't have her mom and the separation of death will keep her from watching her first grandchild grow up. It isn't fair but death is not a respecter of persons.
One lesson that I have gleaned from this short period of time is that I want to plan my own memorial. I don't want my passing to be sad. I want it to be a celebration of the life God gave me. I want it to be a representation of the time, talents and treasures that God entrusted in me to live out. Of course crying is a natural response to grief & loss but I believe that crying is the outward symbol of the pain we as humans feel when we know we cannot touch, talk, hug, or feel that person's presence. I'd rather know that people are laughing when they say "see ya later" to me.  It has also made me realize that my relationship with my mom is precious. No, it's not perfect, it's not what others have but she's all I got while I have her. When she comes back to my house, I hope our relationship will strengthen and we can understand each other on a deeper level. We aren't guaranteed another day. We have to make each day count. If you still have your mom, hug her, call her or send her something special. We only get one mom. We have to cherish what we have.

Apr 17, 2011

Getting to know me....

the q's.

1. what's something you've eaten and liked, but didn't think you would?
fresh spinach in my salad

2. plastic surgery..yay or nay?
hmmm, sure if it's not too extreme......

3. 2 things you love about spring are.....?
the green-ness of trees, warm sunshine

4. when's the last time you went on a picnic?
not lately, planning to do one with Grant later..

5. what's your favorite app?
my Bible is on my iPad....love it!

6. who does the grocery shopping in your house?
I do

7. would you rather take a spin class or zumba?
I would take Zumba even though I feel so foolish!

8. how often do you go out to dinner?
way too much it seems, hoping to stay in most of this week, menu planning is the key!

Apr 12, 2011


Well, the Cub Scout Pack thing has worked itself out for the time being. I'm super glad about it b/c as I've said before, "I live a drama free life!"
The window of life for my Aunt is growing smaller. I'm not quite sure how my feelings will come out when we get there for her funeral. The relationship I had with her died so many years ago and the broken sisterhood between her and my mom is painful to think about. I guess it's all a big fat lesson on forgiveness. One of the things that I have heard Oprah say (which some people are not a big fan of hers) is that "forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could be any different" Isn't that profound! I can apply that to so many situations in my life.  I also worry about my mom, who has been her sister's keeper for the past 5 months. She will be exhausted and probably tormented by what she witnessed, not just what cancer took from her sister. 
On a different note: I have been trying to figure out a summer schedule for myself. I NEED to make some money for 8 weeks and thought about tutoring but I'm unsure of how to set it all up. Any suggestins would be greatly appreciated!
I'm struggling with my weight demons again, trying to get myself back ont right track. I miss going on my morning walks after dropping the boy off at school. However, I am so thankful that he is in a Wilson Co. school. He has learned so much more than I think he should have in Metro. I hate to say it but it's true. He is being challenged and the expectations for learning are high. Plus, Mrs. Greene is awesome!
I have so many ideas, plans, projects, and thoughts swirling in my head, it all feels like randomness. Lately, I have been keeping a notebook and whenever any of those things pop into my head, I write it down and make notes. This is helping me a lot so far.
Oh Yeah! I forgot to mention that I had a consultation appt. with an orthodontist to look into getting braces. WOW! he pretty much told me that I had two choices but the best choice to get maximum benefits would require oral surgery half way through treatment. It's too lenghthy to explain but my oh my! what a treatment plan. I can't relaly make a move until we find out more with Bill's job and that won't be until mid-late June. His insurance might cover the oral surgery expenses but we need a guarantee that his job will stay in place for another year.  In addition, I have to put down about $550 buckaroos.....if you have any spare change, I will take donations! lol!
okay, I think that's enough randomeness for now!

Apr 1, 2011

save the dramah for yo' mamah!

It's been awhile since I've blogged. Sorry for that but this is the first week back from Spring Break and it's been a drag to get up again and get back into a routine.
I have so much going on. One of the situations that I've somehow been induced into is drama within our Cub Scout Pack. I won't go into a bunch of details but it's pretty ridiculous. I try v-e-r-y hard to live a drama free life. This kind of drama has turned me into an anxious, grumpy, and simply ticked off person EVERY time I begin to think about it!
The ugliness of this drama has begin to seep into my very nature of being kind to others, being as non-judgemental as possible, and treating people with a certain level of dignity & respect. It has also caused me to lose respect for people who say they are "Christians" but whose actions are so far from that witness.
My own witness has been affected & I don't like it one bit!  I can only pray that God's judgement will be evident in the coming days. If there's two things I absolutely hate, it's lying and stealing. That is the foundation upon which this drama has begun. We (the Pack) hope to break away from this particular charter , the only hitch is that we would have to start from scratch in terms of financial resources, equipment and materials to run the Pack.
Other things have been going on too, it's just that this is the biggie! The committee is supposed to meet tomorrow night to discuss our exit strategy and what to tell the parents who are obviously in the dark about this whole situation. I hope we can take most of them & their support when we do leave.
Okay, seriously, I'm boring you,right!?
have a great weekend whatever your doing!