YOU would tell me…

My attempt to participate in the “writing through your grief” group was completely stunted by horrible triggers which sent me spiraling for days. Continuing to practice ‘being kind to myself’ I bowed out. Maybe another time, maybe never, who knows. However, the following prompt caused me to pick up my pen…

“How would you love me in this?”

“If I imagined you speaking…you would tell me…”

How would you love me through this? Goodness, you’d be absolutely heartbroken that I’ve been so incredibly sad and inactive. I remember the day we got the “final-NO” in your care. We got home, put you to bed. A family member was here to help (so grateful!), so I was able to go into the back yard to ‘breathe’. I gave your Dad and Brother the latest news, then I walked to that block wall and screamed, “I can’t…!!!” I sobbed, not sure what else I said. Punching that wall was so tempting. Before I knew it, your brother’s tender arms drew me in and held me. Safe…calm…breathe…hold it together. I came back to your side. The sight of your little face was oh, so sad and you were crying. I said, “what’s the matter? Are you ok?” Crying, you answered, “I’m sorry Mom, for hurting you.” YOU HAD HEARD MY BREAKDOWN and blamed yourself for causing my tears and pain. This memory still haunts me. I was mad at myself, mad at the world, BUT NOT YOU. My precious girl ‘taking care of Mom’ as she was finishing her earthly race, God, I have much to learn from you.

You hated to see me sad. You never wanted me to hurt emotionally or physically. You watched me and cared for me.

I remember difficult moments when I’d say, “Angie, I need a hug.” On good days you’d come to me and hug me. On difficult days, you’d say, “Come here.” I’d go to your bedside or couch and lean to you and you’d hug me.

You hated when I was too “homie”. From your small allowance, which by the way you were an amazing steward of, you’d say, “Come on Mom, I’ll buy you lunch.” I’d tell you I could pay so you could use your money for your Starbucks runs, but, no, you wanted to treat me. So we’d go and have Jack-in-the-Crack (haha! that’s what you’d call it). Two ninety-nine cent tacos, fries and a coquita. Caffeine was your friend.

What would you say to me now? Maybe, “Ahí, Lady, what are you doing? I am so JOYFUL. I am with my Savior, where I longed to be.”

I would hope you’d say, “You did everything you could. At the end, I didn’t feel any pain. I heard your goodbyes. I felt your touch.”

I know you’d say, “I am so happy Chubbs is there all the time. And, I love Maria.”

“I’ll see you soon, Mom!”

 

A Tortured Soul

It’s been said that the eyes are the windows to the soul. Your windows have been closed shut forever. I remember a few times in our lives that you dared to crack them open, only to slam them shut as if it was the most stupid thing you did. Agonizing pain tortured your soul. Why couldn’t anyone help you? What kept you shut in your pain? Once again, we are left with a myriad of questions and regrets.

Two memories of you as a teenager come to mind. I was only a child. You were raging mad, like a caged animal who had been brutally hurt. You lashed out only to be beaten mercilessly. And, so, the brutal assault upon yourself and others continued. Your manipulation was masterful. I wonder if your poisonous spews were to keep us away, in an almost protective kind of way. Warped? Yes, but is that what you learned?

You were a son, a brother, a husband, a dad, a grandfather…a human being. How did you slip from our hands? How did you end up alone in your last hours? And, selfishly, I ask, “did you know I loved you?” You were always on my mind and prayers, and now you are gone. A horrid end to a spiraling life.

I wish I could say, “you are now at peace”, but…

So, as many times before, I will rest on the fact that God is God and I am not. That He is merciful and just. That this side of heaven, my questions may never be answered. I will hold on to Him and His promises, and when I have no strength to hold, He holds me still. Like a weaned child, I will rest upon His bosom…there I find comfort and a peace that surpasses all understanding.

Be still my soul, and know He is God.

Birth Date

There are records in a village of Mexico that state that a girl was born. A home birth, common to the land. No gender reveal, no birth announcement, no baby shower, no pictures on social media or elsewhere. Oh, how things have changed.

“Back in the day” is now part of my vocabulary. Who would have thought I would still be here today, 53 years later.

As Job, I have thought, “I should have never been born” or “what is the point”. Crazy brain! You know, for such a mess up like me, I like to think I did something “right”. Yes, I’m learning to shift through the crazy muck in my chaotic brain…an ongoing process. In the midst of it all I have had the privilege and joy of being a Mom. Four humans that lived, some for a very short time, in my womb. A miracle indeed!

Last year my son and his girlfriend treated my hubby and I to a fancy dinner overlooking the ocean. The sunset took my breath away. For a moment “everything” was alright. The vastness and beauty of the ocean reminds me of God’s amazing mercy and grace. Beauty in the midst of gutting pain.

After dinner we took a stroll down the malencon of La Paz, Baja…so refreshing. We ended the evening laughing and dancing under the stars. For a moment “everything” was normal, although one is deeply aware it’s a new normal. And, somewhere in it all, it feels perfect. A beautiful evening etched on my heart. Beauty for ashes, indeed.

So TODAY I am grateful that:

  • My husband doesn’t know the pain of widowhood
  • My son doesn’t know the pain of being an orphan

AND, somewhere amidst the thick fog, together, we will find a “lantern” to light up another moment in time.

A hug, a smile…laughter.

Listening to the beat of their heart

 

Birthdays

“Happy birthday to you! Happy birthday to you…” I better stop singing before I mess it up. Yes, it’s happened! Yes, I cried. End of story…oh, wait, I’m just getting started. Anywho, birthdays…goodness, how could such a subject conjure up all sorts of reactions and emotions? I tell ya, there’s nothing light and simple anymore…or has there ever been?

Can I just express my opinion about birthdays? Yes! I’m glad you approve…haha! What in the world has happened to birthday parties, people?!?! The venue, the entertainment, the decor…omygoodness gracious, one would have to sell their first born to afford such a feat. Wait, what if your first born is the birthday celebrated? Well, never mind. Let’s get back to the story. Quinceañeras are no longer a little girl with a simple white dress at a mass y una comida. Oh no, it’s a huge production. You’d think it’s the royal wedding. And, them cakes! Seriously?!?! Are they even eatable? I’d take a Betty Crocker, moist devils food cake with milk chocolate frosting ANY DAY over some of these “plastic” pieces of art. Ah, my Angie would always bake me a cake 😦

My “happy” birthday memory bank is, well, not very active. I do remember my Mom would always be the first to wish me happy birthday. And, I remember turning 15, which for some reason is a “magical” number in my culture. However, I had already managed to mess things up bringing shame to the family. The Runaway had begrudgingly been accepted back. Shunned because her innocence had been lost. Funny thing is that her innocence had been long gone. Taken in their own home by one of their own. I guess it was easier to blame a stranger…I guess. Let’s just say it wasn’t The Waltons. There was an attempt to celebrate this “magical” age in a girls life. Still not sure why? Cause it was anything but a “happy birthday”. Yup, Porcelain Doll was in full attire. A picture with a cake is cause for a flood of memories, a deluge of triggers which should be avoided.

There is that 50th birthday, though. Quite the marker, so I decided to celebrate. It was GOOD. Then there was my last birthday with my beautiful girl. She was nearing her end. Being who she was, she “decided” that she would fight to stay awake all day so that she could spend it celebrating me. Her eating was almost at a stand still, yet, she sat up and had a piece of pie with us. It was her Momma’s birthday and she would do all in her power to make it a special one, and SHE DID!

“Happy birthday to you! Happy birthday to you…”

maybe, just maybe, birthdays aren’t that bad after all…

Regular Routine

Yes! A full week of regular routine. My whole being is so giddy 😀

If I ever doubt or question that caring for my whole person is beneficial, going off routine proves the opposite. However, being too rigid about routine can cause extra turmoil in my scrambled brain. Flexibility is essential.

This Frail Frame needs to be cared for Spiritually with good Nutrition cause let’s face it We Need Food to fuel, and to keep this achy-breaky-body-moving with some form of exercise. So Let’s get Physical!

The weekend is here. Go do something fun, new and exciting or sit, relax and enjoy a good cup of coffee. Get refreshed, renewed, re-energized. Get lost in a good book or write a piece from the inner most part of your soul or watch a good movie. Remember TODAY is a Gift! Tomorrow is not here yet. What will be etched in your memory from TODAY?

Flooded at the Sink

Standing over the kitchen sink, dinner in the making. Waves and waves of thoughts flowing through her mind…does that reel ever stop? The memory of her little girl bouncing in, always wanting to help Momma. “What-chu making?”, was the question of the hour. Mom would answer, “Pos, food.” Giggles and rolling of the eyes would follow. Suddenly these precious memories are dampened by the memories of her own childhood.

For The RunawayJunior High doesn’t bring cherished memories, however, Home-ec class yielded some good results. Learning to make spaghetti sauce and cinnamon rolls was a tasty experience. Recipes that are still in practice today.

Ah, yes, the day she learned to make spaghetti sauce was a memorable one. She came home so excited, ready to share this amazing accomplishment (at least she thought so) with her mother. Let’s just say there were no pats-on-the-back or words of affirmation.

Somewhere along the way, mother, begrudgingly decided to let her make this “foreign cuisine”. Oh, how excited The Runaway was! She knew they would like it. Mother bought her all the necessary ingredients and off she went into full mode cooking gear. Mother’s frown and side looks could not dissuade her. However, even though Mother agreed to her cooking this meal, mother still made the regular dinner, cause “who would eat that porquería”.

Let’s just say Dad liked it, a lot. No, he wasn’t like A Father building his daughter up. But, after careful inspection, he scarfed-it down. And, as time went, he would ask Mother to buy the necessary ingredients for his daughter to make this foreign dish.

And so went the wave of memories. Always a mixture of emotions.

Dinner is finished…let’s go eat 🙂

Beyond Grateful

My daughter was in the autism spectrum. Her comprehension could be difficult at times. Remember the Love Boat🖤🌹? This time of the year was one of great difficulty. It was cruel on her heart and mind, because she thought “everyone” had a special someone. She felt she was the only one in the world without a valentine. Oh, how she cried! She thought that because she was ugly and “different”, nobody wanted her. We had many conversation, where I’d try to make her understand differently.

My heart wells up with gratitude at the thought of two men who took the time to make my beautiful girl feel as special as she was. They didn’t have to. They weren’t told to. It came from a heart of love.

♥My son (Angie’s big bro) took her on a special date for valentines day. She was besides herself. She had me help her pick the perfect outfit, doing her make up,  and helping her with her hair. She felt like a princess. She talked about it, and talked about it. Such a special day for her, and him.

♥A family member brought her fresh flowers every Saturday. We would place them where she could smell and see them. They would brighten up her days. Even on those horrid treatment days, she’d smile when she would see her beautiful flowers.

Just two examples of love and kindness. They might seem small, but they were enormous in a my daughter’s eyes. And, this Momma is beyond grateful.

We decorated her grave…that’s just what we do. But, the memories of love shown to her on this earth are engraved on our hearts.

Can you think of someone that might need a little extra love? Take the time. Your love and kindness lasts beyond the grave🌸✝️