Friday, October 24, 2014

Day 508


Oct. 24, 2014

Day 508


Friday night...the girls are in bed, Sam is creating with legos, and Ben is watching tv.  David is at the final football game of the season.  I was going to have to pick him up but he texted me to let me know that Will had told him he was on his way and would pick him up.  Will had to go to a handbell concert tonight at Faith.  He didn't want to go and I don't really blame him.  Handbells are nice and all - our church has a handbell choir, actually - but to sit and listen to them for a couple of hours?  I'd probably take an ink pen and impale myself to end the misery...What he really wanted to do was go to the football game.  He thought and thought and even actually (!) asked my advice.  I told him to go to the concert.  It's probably going to be his only year at Faith and it's not worth the hassle of trying to get out of the concert.  Besides, it would fulfill one of his concert requirements for his music class.  So he went.  I'm just thankful I don't have to pick David up because it would mean loading up everybody and of course, it would be a traffic nightmare arriving there as the game ends.  So, all is well that ends well, including this week.


And...what a week it has been.  Ellie has continued her reign of terror.  The more I observe and look, I just don't see anything that appears to be brain-damage like to account for her choices.  I think she's just bad!  Hopefully, for a season only.  Although, to be honest, I've had visions this week of her in another decade, when she's a young teenager, dressed in stilettos and a leather bra and short, short skirt knocking off a liquor store.  I sincerely hope this is a case of my mind leaping to a worst case scenario.


This week, she:


* helped herself to Sam's birthday candy bar bouquet.  A lady at church knew Sam had a birthday this week so she did the cutest thing.  She took a mug and bought all these candy bars and taped them, along with some one dollar bills to thin sticks and made a "bouquet" for him.  He was thrilled!  I suggested he keep it in his bedroom so as to not tempt/make the girls feel bad.  That wasn't enough for Ellie.  Lizzie discovered empty sticks under her bed and promptly tattled on her sister. 


* Tuesday morning I was awakened at 4:40 in the morning.  Ellie was sitting on the couch surrounded by empty candy wrappers.  She knew where I had the Halloween candy and helped herself to it in the middle of the night.  The worst part  about that was that I was unable to fall back to sleep after dealing with her.


* took a paddle and deliberately smashed a light bulb with it - over a drawer full of clothing, which meant every item in the drawer had to be re-washed


* emptied half my bottle of peppermint oil into my expensive jar of Clinique age-staving-off cream.  It's too expensive to throw out so now I just have to burn my face every night.  Wrinkles might be the preferred alternative.


* snuck off with one of Sam's birthday cupcakes.  He requested "Spiderman" cupcakes so I scoured Pinterest and found how to make web-looking cupcakes with a tube of red frosting and a toothpick.  I then arranged them all carefully on a plate and put a big number 7 in the middle of the cupcake.  She took one and devoured it in her bedroom


* got into a small bottle of touch up paint I had made for my van.  It's oil-based and very, very sticky


The one nice thing I can report about all this misbehavior is that  the worse Ellie is, the better behaved Lizzie seems to be.  Maybe she's just relishing her role as chief reporter, I don't know.  Although, one day this week I discovered half a bottle of laundry detergent in the laundry room garbage!  Fortunately, I had just changed the garbage so the bag was pretty empty.  Otherwise, I might never have noticed.  When questioned (ok, yelled at) Lizzie shrugged and said, "I just wanted to see what color it was!"  Argh!  Mean mom that I am, I handed her a table spoon and made her scoop it out of the garbage and painstakingly put it back into the detergent bottle.



So, all day Tues. I was functioning on about 5 hours of sleep because of Ellie's nocturnal wanderings.  That night I put the girls down early and I was in bed by 8:45 - unheard of.  I got TEN hours of sleep.  Oh, boy, that felt good!


Sam just wandered into my room where I am typing and asked me what "stress" is.  He must have heard the word somewhere.  I wonder how he knew how to ask ME about that word?!


With all his classes, Will is struggling the  most with his music one.  He finally got the results back for his first test.  He was hoping to clear a 50% on that one.  He just did not have a good feeling about it all and was a little stressed that his low grade in that class might affect his scholarships.  He finally got the result this week.


He got a 95%.


I am reading a tremendously enjoyable book right now.  It's the first in a series of books written about King David's wives.  This one is about Michal, who was, of course, his first wife.  I really enjoy Biblical fiction.  Fiction books are my "language" and it just makes Bible times so real to me.  Now, because of reading this book I have this desire to go through the Psalms again.  Reading some of them in this book in the context in which they may first have been sung/prayed makes them so much more meaningful. I also want to download the other books in this series, if they're written and available yet.


A few years ago I actually wrote a fictionalized account of the fall of man in the garden for Faithwriters.  I loved that story. It was my first attempt at fictionalizing biblical history. 


Ooh, speaking of FaithWriters - my book is almost out!  Well, not MY book, but they've finally gotten around to publishing some of the editor's picks, so I'm in there.  This week they sent me a copy of my story to approve.  It's the one I wrote about the mom visiting her son in prison.  The entire story is almost all a conversation and then at the very end there's this twist that lets the reader know it wasn't as it appeared.  It isn't just a mother/son phone call.  It's Mom visiting her son behind bars.  I've always been proud of that story.  They had to change my main character's last name, because one of the other authors featured in this book has the same name.  That was total coincidence on my part.  But it was a small change.



Switching gears...


Yesterday Paul's dad had another heart attack.  I found it out on Facebook.  It doesn't sound like anything real serious, but  when you're in your seventies and you've already had a massive stroke ( a decade ago) and a previous heart attack a few months ago, I guess nothing is really "minor" anymore.  So that stirs up all kinds of feelings on my end, where I'm probing my conscience again.  Have I handled everything the best I can?  Is there something else I should be doing to encourage reconciliation, particularly before it's too late?  I have found myself praying more in the last few days that God would open my eyes to any responsibility on my end.  But I'm just not seeing it.


Still, my heart aches over everything.  I may be completely innocent here, but this is not God's plan for families.  Sigh...


And it's coupled with lingering grief, too.  Actually, the grief may always linger.  It's definitely lessening as time goes on but I don't know that it will ever fully leave.  I'm not so sure it's supposed to.


One day last week I got really kind of mad.  I am just tired of hurting!  Grief is this continual weight the bereaved wears.  Sometimes it is so heavy the wearer can barely walk under the load.  Other times, it's more like a heavy chain around the neck.  But it is always there.  I just got mad and exclaimed internally,


I'm SO tired of hurting!  I DON'T WANT TO HURT anymore!


But I still did.  It didn't go away, despite my protesting.  In the beginning, the hurt is almost comforting in a weird way.  It's confirmation that something horrible has happened.  I remember when I'd have an occasional day where the grief lifted that I would almost feel panicky.  What was wrong with me?  Was I not grieving properly because I had a good day?  Where were the expected, daily tears? After all, didn't the depth of my daily grief show how much I loved him?  So, if I didn't feel bad all the time, what did that say about my love for Paul?   And then when the hurt and grief would settle down over me again there would almost be this sigh of relief from my heart.  Ah, there is is!


But now - I'm ready to be done.  My life is changed forever.  I can't undo that.   But I don't want to hurt for the rest of my life, either.  I'm ready to start the rest of my life.  Last week at the Piano Guys concert Will snapped a selfie of the two of us.  I put it on Facebook that night.  It was a good picture.  And it didn't make me look fat. That's the main reason it made it onto Facebook.  I am that vain, yes.  The next night an older gentleman at church told me he had seen the picture and commented,


"It's good to see you smile again."


I want to smile.  I want to mean it.  I want to live again.'s been 16 months.  It's only been 16 months.  I think I'm probably being a little too unrealistic to think I can recover from losing the love of my life in less than a year and a half.


I get Facebook updates from Widows Wear Stilettos which is the book I ordered and read this summer (really, really good book).  One day this week the author made the comment that if anyone suggested to us that we should be "over" things by now or should be moving on at a faster clip, we would be rightfully offended.  But how often are we telling ourselves that same thing as widows?  It definitely made me stop and think.  I am too impatient with myself. 


Grief is a process and it cannot be hurried.  It's just getting a little more uncomfortable for me right now, I guess.



It will be a busy weekend.  Tomorrow night is our annual Swan bonfire.  I don't know if the mayor is planning a wagon ride like we usually do or not.  I would guess not since I am the one who owns the hay rack and he hasn't said anything to me yet about it!  The mayor is supposed to be buying that from me, but so far, it's still sitting out beside the garage.  So I will spend some time tomorrow cooking for the meal.


Sunday Amanda the Panda (grief services) is paying for all of us to go to a pumpkin patch/fall fun place in Mitchellville.  Will is even going to go to church with us that morning and then go with us.  It should be fun. 


The Littles have all come down with colds this week and today my throat started feeling scratchy.  Oh, no... So I've been applying thieves oil and another oily concoction I made up to my feet bottoms and chest all day.  I hope I can keep it from getting any worse. 


A funny to end with: Lizzie asked me this morning if she could wear her "yogurt" pants.  She loves those things.  They were in some hand-me-downs passed to me by someone.  I didn't have the heart to tell her they're actually called "yoga" pants.  I guess "yogurt" probably makes more sense in her mind anyway!




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