Spiraling

Welp. It’s been a while. But since I’ve always said that blogging is cheaper than therapy, here I am. Back again.

I can feel the downward spiral stating. Starting. Who am I kidding? I’m a good way down that spiral already. Only thing keeping me from hitting rock bottom again is the meds. The last few weeks have been just a blur of . . . I don’t even know, just blah & empty emotionless zombie-mode. Hubby tried telling me for weeks that Thanksgiving was almost here & I needed to plan. I just kept thinking, I got time. Then suddenly I no longer had time. I should have felt pressured & stressed, but honestly. I just didn’t give a damn

I forgot to do so much that I normally do for Thanksgiving. But oh well. Then the next day, while most people in this country are out shopping trying to bag a great deal, my family has the annual Tree Day tradition. We drag out all the Christmas stuff & decorate the house. This year, while setting up the tree, I finally feIt something, for the first time in weeks. One of the songs in the Muppet Family Christmas triggered all the feels all at once. There was sadness because I miss my Dad & this was his favorite time of year. Then the realization that this year is the 20th anniversary of the loss of my first baby. All of that was quickly followed by an over whelming sense of guilt. Guilt because I hadn’t realized that sooner. Guilt over all the traditional things I’d forgotten to do for my family this year. Then it was like my brain decided, “Oh, you like emotion? Have some more, in fact, have all of the sadness & guilt you can handle.”

Then, as quickly as it came on, it all went away. I was left with a feeling of depression. This morning, I could feel myself spiraling downward. I’m allowed to double-up on my meds when I feel like this, so that’s what I’ve done. I’ve also talked things out withe my husband. He’s amazing.

Anyway I know this is a bad time of year for me. All the angel days combined with the holidays has always been a trigger. Throw in the gloomy weather activating my arthritis & SAD (seasonal affective disorder), & I’m just a hot mess of depression & numbness. But you know what they say, knowing is half the battle. Hopefully, with a lot of prayer, medications, & support from my family & friends, I’ll get through this sooner rather than later.

Conflicted

14 years ago today I had surgery because my body refused to give up the baby we had hoped and dreamed for, the baby that had died in utero two weeks earlier.

Today, my Sister-in-law gave birth to the second prettiest baby girl I’ve ever seen.  (First prettiest is my own daughter, duh!)

 

Joy and Sorrow.

I love this time of year.  I love the twinkling, multi-color lights, the way the lights reflect off the ornaments on the tree.  I love the smell of fresh baked cookies, the taste of cookie dough.  I love the smell of my Balsam & Pine candle (it’s from Yankee Candle).  I love curling up with a mug of hot chocolate in front of the fire place.  I love the music.  I love the memories and nostalgia.  I love making new memories, and creating new traditions with my own family.  I love this time year.

I hate this time of year.  I hate the depression that always comes.  I hate the “gimmies” and the “I wants” that come no matter how much we try to stave them off.  I hate the commercialism, the Christmas stuff in the stores well before Halloween. I hate the stress that comes with all the projects and the “did I get a gift for that one?  Did we forget anyone?”  I hate the self-imposed pressure to be happy and make life all kittens and sunshine for my kids when I just want to curl up in a fetal postition and sleep through from November til February.  Hibernation – It’s not just for bears anymore!  I just want to avoid it all.  I hate this time of year.

But I love this time.

Christmas music makes me cry in such an odd mix of joy and sorrow, that I’m not sure what to do with all the emotion bottled up inside.  Certain CD’s especially remind me of my Dad.  John Denver and the Muppets “A Christmas Together” is one of them.  Good memories of listening to the record (yes, vinyl. I feel so old!) throughout the holiday season and yelling “Ba Dum Dum Dum Dum!” with Piggy.  It was always one of our favorites.

This year, I’m struggling.  This year marks 10 years since we lost our Angel.  While time has healed the wounds and lessened the pain, the scars are still there.  This year will be the second year that my GeekBoy doesn’t have a joint birthday party with his Grampa.  I miss my dad.  He loved this time year.

I wish I had his joy in the season.  I wish I could be free of the sorrow and depression that drags me down.  I try.  I am not entirely sure how successful I am.  But as long as the kids have a good time, and good memories of their own to look back on…  I’ll have done my job.

I most definitely believe in Angels.

I’ve seen her again. It’s been years since I’ve last caught a glimpse of the blonde girl that haunts me. My Angel.

The baby I lost nearly 10 years ago was due July 20, 1999. Sadly she left us December 22, 1998. At first, I saw small flashes of light. Then, just before my 7 year old was born I saw her. A flash of blond hair and legs running past my third story balcony door. It was so real, I honestly wondered how a child had gotten up there while I searched for her. Never did find her though.

A few days ago, I saw her again. This time, taller, about 9 years old. I’ve yet to see her face. But there always seems to be a whisper of laughter in the air and a flash of light reflecting off her blond hair. This time, out of the corner of my eye, I saw her run into BigBoy’s room as he slept.

She is my oldest child, but not my firstborn. She is the guardian of my living children. To early taken from us, yet with us still.

Time heals. Yes. But you never forget.

Do you believe?

This morning, I’m listening to the radio, and they are talking about ghost stories. It’s got me thinking. I’ve got a few stories of my own.

First there was the time that I saw a 2 year old blonde girl running on my 3rd story apartment balcony. At the time, I was living in Italy, pregnant with the child who would become GeekBoy, our first to survive my womb. But, this was in 2000, about 2 years after we lost Angel. I heard a little laugh, and saw the flash of blonde hair and legs running past the glass door to the balcony out of the corner of my eye. It was so real, I ran out on the balcony to catch the girl before she got hurt. The brief seconds it took me to get off the couch and out the door, I wondered how in the heck a 2 year old could get onto my balcony. It was a big balcony, wrapped around almost the whole apartment. I walked the whole thing 4 times. I could not believe there was no girl. What I had seen was so real. When I finally accepted that there was no girl, it dawned on me. It was the second anniversary of Angel’s due date. I firmly believe the little blonde girl was my first baby.

The second time I experienced something was a few weeks later. I was 4 months pregnant with GeekBoy, when July 24, 2000 I suddenly felt really full. It wasn’t a contraction as much as it was suddenly it felt like there was 2-3 times as much baby in there. The feeling lasted for a minute or two, and then nothing. Later that night, I got the phone call that my Grandfather (dad’s dad) had died a moment before I had the weird feeling. Eerie. I swore up and down to DH that my Grandpa had come to visit his great-grandkid before going to heaven.

There have been a multitude of flashes of light. They always appear from the corner of my eye, and always around Angel’s AngelDay – December 29. I “see” her every year.

Then there was the year that GeekBoy was only about 3 years old, and declared that Angel lived by the light in the stairwell. We had never mentioned any of the angels to him, figuring it didn’t affect him, and he didn’t need to know that side of life yet. Yet not only did Angel live next to the light, he had 4 imaginary friends that year. An older girl who watched over and mothered them all, a sneaky boy who loved to play mysteries, and a pair that were almost twins who loved to play games. Sounded much like my 4 angels, Angel (dec 98), Mysterie Rayne (Dec 99), Sunshine Rae(Jan 02), and Charity Rose (Feb 02).

If that’s not freaky enough, GeekBoy became fascinated with mermaids almost a year ago, declaring he had a “Mermaid.” At first this irritated me, because he would talk about her like she was real, and make up huge elaborate stories about her. He talked about her so much, the other two began inventing mermaids also. But it wasn’t until about two weeks ago that he told us… Mermaid, is not really a mermaid. She’s a little blonde girl, a few years older then he is, who likes to dress up in a mermaid costume sometimes. And her birthday is July 15. July 15. Angel’s due date. Suddenly, I don’t mind “Mermaid” so much.

Then there was the time this past March when my dad died. thePinkDiva woke up the next morning and before we could tell her Grampa was dead, she told us that Grampa had come through her wall the night before. tPD said that Grampa had checked out her room and told it was cool, and that he was proud of her. Then he was gone. Thing is, Grampa died shortly after she went to bed. I believe he did visit her, and the rest of us. I believe he stopped by to see the house and let us all know how proud he was of us before he left. tPD is just the only one who saw him.

So there you have it. My experiences with the spiritual realm. I firmly believe in Angels. And I believe there are evil forces out there too. What about you?

I will look to the mountains…

I wrote an email to my group of friends yesterday, about how I was feeling so stressed and pressured over the coming months that I was becoming paralyzed emotionally. How right now it feels almost like a 200 pound weight, crushing my soul. I wrote about how many milestones, anniversaries, birthdays, and holidays were all about to hit in the next 6 months. I mentioned how I was getting overwhelmed with the big picture, and kept having to remind myself to start small, one step at a time. One event at a time. Get through MomoT’s wedding first. Then deal with the next holiday. I said, “It’s a hard thing to remember when the mountain seems so high. You look up at the top and think there is no way I’ll ever get all the way up there. I might as well just stay here… One step at a time. And before you know it, you’re enjoying the view from the top of the mountain.”One of my good friends reminded me of Psalm 121.

I will lift my eyes to the mountains; from whence shall my help come?
My help comes from the Lord, who made Heaven and Earth.
He will not allow your foot to slip; He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your Keeper, the Lord is your Shade on your right hand.
The sun will not smite you by day, nor the moon by night.
The Lord will protect you from all evil; He will keep your soul.
The Lord will guard your going out and coming in from this time forth and forever.
~ Ps 121 NASB

Wow. What a powerful reminder. I’ve lost my true focus. I’ve been looking at the forest, instead of the One who created the forest. So let me change my perspective here…

He planned it this way. He grouped all the angeldays together in a short 3 month time span, because he knew it would bring me such grief and sorrow, and He didn’t want me to go through that grief all year round. He then entwined my children’s birthdays within all my Angel’s angeldays to make sure there was joy in the midst of the sorrow. He gave me the gift of my oldest child a few days from my father’s birthday because he knew one day my father’s birthday would also be a cause of sorrow, and the birthday of a child is a powerful reminder that life goes on. Yet there is enough time between the two days that I can grieve my father, and still find my way back to joy for my son. He planned my father’s death to occur between my daughter’s birthday and Easter. At some point, it may even be Easter. What better reminder that we will see dad again, then Easter? The day our Lord and Savior conquered death once and for all. He waited until after Thanksgiving to start the drama. So that I would begin the season of pain and hardship by remembering all that I have to be thankful for. He centered all this grief and pain right around Christmas. Christmas. Wow. The day Jesus was born. A day for joy, and celebration. The birthday of our King. Then he gave me three beautiful children, to make sure I did not ignore all the joy of the holiday season. He gave me a set of truly wonderful friends who are always there to lend an ear and hand out hugs, even if they are virtual hugs… He gave me a mother, who, though we fought like cats and dogs when I was teen, is now one of my best and closest friends. He gave me three beautiful kids, who, though they can be a bit devilish from time to time, in general they are so well behaved that mommy can spend a few days not knowing which way is up and they will entertain each other, behave like angels, and give mommy the time she needs to get her head back on straight.

And best of all… He gave me a wonderful husband. A caring, compassionate man who would do anything for me to make sure that my burdens are not too heavy. A man not afraid to get his hands dirty with some housework when all I want to do is sleep off the pain. A man who is always there for me, even when he is an ocean away. Who even when he doesn’t fully understand the emotion coursing through my body, is always willing to listen, even if “listening” means “reading” because I’m often so much better at writing then speaking.

While flipping through my Bible to find Ps 121, I found this one:

I love the Lord, because he hears my voice and my supplications.
Because He has inclined His ear to me, Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live.
The cords of death encompass me and the terrors of Sheol came upon me; I found distress and sorrow.
Then I called upon the name of the Lord: “Oh Lord, I beseech You, save my life!”
Gracious is the Lord, and righteous; Yes, our God is compassionate.
The Lord preserves the simple; I was brought low, and He saved me.
Return to your rest, o my soul, for the Lord has dealt bountiful with you.
For You have rescued my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling.
I shall walk before the Lord in the land of the living.

~ Ps 116: 1-9

Wow. Just what I needed to see today. Thank you Lord.

Worn.

Well. I’m just worn down. It’s getting closer and closer to *that* time of year. It’s time for me to start taking stock of my current gift stash, and figure out what is still needed for the upcoming birthdays and Christmas. Time to start planning now for Dia Del Muerte, Thanksgiving, Birthday parties – three between December and March, and Christmas. Time to start planning now, to figure who will be visiting when, and what days do we need leave time, and which meals will I be cooking… The list goes on. It’s such a busy time of year.

It’s also a hard time of year. The anniversaries of all four of my angels are sprinkled throughout the season. Not to mention Dad’s birthday. Every year my family celebrated a joint party because my oldest boy’s birthday is within a week of my dad’s birthday. But not this year. This year, the family party for my boy will be bittersweet, and I know I will cry as I watch my boy blow out the candles by himself for the first time in 5 years.

I’m keeping busy. And trying very hard not to get overwhelmed. One day at a time. One event at a time. Just breathe. Get through the wedding first. Then we’ll deal with the rest.

I am an Angel's Mommy.

8 years ago today. 8 years and one week ago I woke up full of joy and anticipation. I would be hearing my baby’s heartbeat today! We prepared for the doctor visit, DH even called in late to be able to go with me. 8 years and one week ago, confusion set in when the doppler didn’t work.

Confusion led to worry when the Ultrasound showed a beautiful little baby, but didn’t pick up a heart beat.

Worry led to fear when, after being sent to labor and delivery for evaluation, yet another doctor and a new ultrasound machine failed to find a heartbeat.

Fear led to shock when, after three different machines, four doctors, and countless nurses couldn’t find the heartbeat, we were finally told our baby was dead.

Shock led to heartbreak, when 8 years ago today, I was wheeled into an operating room where doctors did what my body refused to do.

My precious Angel.

Gone… but not forgotten.

My Angel - Gone but not Forgotten

*LO done using my Angel’s Wings kit.
Brad and Pink wings from my Angel Baby Collection.
Font is Euphornigenic.
To read my Angel’s full story, click here.