Monday, June 11, 2012

i'm gone, but then, i'm not gone*

When somebody dies, it is really tough.  Suddenly they have just been extinguished from your life.  Especially if it was an unexpected death, it is really hard to swallow that they aren't coming back.  

My Papa (my mom's dad) passed away September 4th, 2009 from a heart attack.  He was my hero.  He was always there for me.  When Luke and I got married in January of 2008 we lived in my grandparent's basement for about 5 months until we got a house of our own.  I am so thankful for that small window that we got to spend a lot of time with him before he passed.  Looking back that time is so precious.  I'd give up my house to go back to that time and just live with him again.

My Papa was a funny man.  He was in the military for 20 or 30 years, so he was extremely regimented.  Everything in his days was on a schedule, even though he was retired and could have done what he wanted, when he wanted.  I mean, he wasn't extreme, but the little things mattered to him.  He got up every morning at 6 and went to have breakfast at the Baker's Square at 7.  He had oatmeal every morning, until his doctor told him he should have something different due to the carbs, so he switched to bacon and eggs.  Then he went over to our family's bookstore and had a cookie and a cup of coffee.  Then he went home for just a little bit, probably to "use the library."  And after that he would turn back around and go to the bookstore again, where I would oftentimes meet him for lunch.  In the afternoon he may run to the grocery store, or Walmart, or Lowe's, whatever he needed to get done.  But he'd always be back at his house just before 4, because that's when Dr. Phil started.  And every day he would say to us, "You shoulda seen Dr. Phil today!"  He always told us the whole plot in detail.  And in the evening, almost every night, he went out to dinner, and a lot of the time he would take Luke and I, and Haven too when she was born.  He loved to go out to eat - it was one of his favorite things.  I think that's because he was such a talker.  He was very social.  He would talk to anybody.   He loved to talk to us and he loved to flirt with the waitresses.  It was just what he did.  He was harmless though.  Nobody ever minded.  At night, after dinner, he would stay up for the 10 o clock news, and then he'd be off to bed.  It's nice to remember the details about him.  Sometimes I just daydream about him a little and it's like a happy place for me, a comfort.

This morning I was looking for something to give Parker for her breakfast, and I decided on a banana.  It was an easy decision because she is obsessed with them lately.  The other day she ate about 8 bananas in two days.  Whatever.  If she wants to eat bananas, I'm going to keep feeding them to her.  Better than being obsessed with fruit snacks like Haven is.   As I was peeling the banana and handing it to her, I had a flashback to a time when we lived with Grammy and Papa.  Near the end of his life, he had quite a few health struggles.  He had heart problems and diabetes for as long as I was alive, and had to take daily insulin shots in the stomach.  You could see him struggling to walk because the circulation in his legs was so bad.  But he refused any help.  The doctor told him to get a walker, and he wouldn't have it.  They had the motorized carts at the grocery store, and I don't think he used them until the last few months of his life.  Honestly, he probably should have been in a wheelchair, but he wouldn't allow it.  Probably had something to do with his ego.  So, when we lived with them, and we saw his struggle, we offered to do some things for him to make his life easier, like buy the groceries.  He always had a list anyway, so we thought we'd utilize our young legs, and do him a favor.  One day, he consented, and we went and shopped for him.  One item on the list was bananas.  We found the biggest, most beautiful bananas in the store, and thought we had done a great job.  We brought all the groceries home and put them away.  The next day he said to us, "The bananas you bought are too big!  I like small ones that I can eat in a couple bites with my medicine."  I think we may have bought the wrong milk too on that trip.  After that we realized, it may be hard for him, but he likes to do it.  The grocery store is part of his schedule, and he thrives on his schedule.  That was the last time we bought groceries.  He told us to just put things on the list if we needed anything.

This story makes me laugh.  I love that an everyday activity like picking up a "too big" banana can flood me with memories about my favorite man.  My Papa filled the room with his energy and his big, loud voice.  It's impossible not to miss him.  I have a hollow feeling in my chest when I think too much about him.  In September, it will have been three years since he passed.  It's hard to believe it's been that long without him, but the pain is much more tolerable now.  He's not here anymore, and that's just a way of life now.  But he's forever in my heart, and even in some of my daily activities.  That's how I know he's still with me, and he's looking down on us.  
I can't wait to see him again.  

Love you, Papa.

*Anybody know what movie this is from?
Please, somebody, guess right!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

texts from chloe

I just wanted to give a quick heads up to everybody.
My sister started posting pictures of her conversations with our youngest sister, Chloe, who is 17 and has autism.  Some of them are pretty hilarious and people kept asking us to start a blog with all of the conversations.

So here is the link to the blog.  Check it out.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

the real me

It is really easy to care too much about what others think.

I have realized over the years just how much I really care about what people think of the things I do, the clothes I wear, the books/movies I like, the people I do and don't hang out with, etc.  For me it was way worse in high school, if I thought there was the slightest chance somebody might think what I was wearing was stupid, or if they thought my hair looked bad, or if maybe my friend didn't like something (but I really did), I would just pass on those things.  That is a lot of individuality I missed out on.  I have always been somebody that needed advice (or maybe approval?) on what to wear, how to wear it, and what accessories to put with it.  And up until recently, when asked to sum up my style, I couldn't really tell you.  I used to walk into the stores I liked and would see something I liked on a mannequin and just buy everything on it.  I was playing right into those advertisers hands!

Becoming an adult and getting married does something to your self-esteem.  "Oh, I could wear that shirt I like and it doesn't matter what anybody thinks!"  I won't be a total loser if I don't have those shoes that everybody has - as a matter of fact, I don't even like them!  And now that I have bills to pay, and I know how much clothes cost, I know that it doesn't matter if all of my clothes come from Target  - I can do that!  All that matters, is that I like it, and that what I am wearing is glorifying to God - remember, Modest is Hottest! ;)  haha, had to slip that in there.

It's not just about clothes though.  I've always been a book nerd.  I love to read a few chapters of a good book before I fall asleep.  It helps me wind down from the day.  

I LOVE Harry Potter and I LOOOOOVE Twilight.
Those are two things you should know about me.
Here's me on the outside.  
Nice, normal, mother of two beautiful girls.

And here's me on the inside - dressing up as Professor Trelawney to go see the H.Po movies, and who knows maybe sometimes at home too.

 And thinking it might be a good idea to get a Twilight tattoo that covers my entire back.

Like I said, that's me on the inside.  I won't get a giant Twilight tattoo.  But if someday I have a nervous breakdown and do that, don't be judgey, because I'll revert back to my high school days and cry myself to sleep. 
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