Lets Be Real With Each Other, Right Now…

What I can say to you but not to my 15 year old son.

Driving him to school today we passed some kids at a playground. He looks over and says “How cool would it be to be little again”. I agreed. To go back to a moment, a day, or a time in your past that is your favorite. He said. I would choose 5 years old but with all of the knowledge I have now”.

As I am dropping him off I give him a hug, say I love you. What is really running through my head was 5 years old would be the last age I would pick. I know everybody has a past, everybody has a story but for me in my life at age 5 was when life ended.

Im not saying that I haven’t had some horrific shit happen after but I think when your older you can cope. When your little you don’t understand whats happening around you. Before 5 I had what seemed a “normal” family, a “normal” life.

Christmas was coming around, my Papa (my mom’s Dad) Passed away suddenly of a heart attack. He was one of the most important people to me in the world. Within weeks my Dad left. I was not aware at that time he had been cheating on my mom and he made the choice to leave our family. Who knows, the stress from my father cheating on my mother could have resulted in killing my papa?? His baby girl being hurt like that…

My mom had graduated high school from a small town, joined the military during Vietnam war were she met my dad. They married and had five beautiful children. She became a house wife. When he left she found herself alone, never worked a day in her life… She had 2-3 jobs at a time to keep us in our house, fed clothed and off welfare. My dad did very little to support us.

My oldest sister moved out, got married. My oldest brother moved to Arizona for school. My best friend across the street and his mom who was like a second mother to me moved away. So here I am going from life as I know it to No Dad, No Mom, No Brother, No Sister, No Friend, No Papa, No One to count on, to depend on…

My Brother Jon and Peder were only a couple years older than me. Jon had to grow up fast, he became the man of the family. Even though he wasn’t old enough. Not by maturity, by age or by the laws standards but if he hadn’t stood up and helped raise my brother and I don’t know if we would have all made it? My mom did her best but he was the glue that held us all together. He made sure we got on the bus, got off the bus safe, had breakfast, he even learned how to cook dinner. Cleaned the house and would even get us to kick in. Mom had to get sleep in between every job. She was either at work or sleeping.

My mom went from a stay at home mom baking cookies, going to all the school functions, cooking all of the meals, being there for everything to being absent. She had to work! I remember I would fake being sick sometimes just so that she would have to leave her job and pick me up and take me to work with her for the whole day! It would frustrate her but then I knew that her and I would get to have alone time. It was the only alone time I remember having at that age. She had a job at a chemical factory where she had a desk in the middle of a huge warehouse. It was so cold, she would sit me next to her and this little space heater. I remember getting orange juice from a food truck. That was one of my happiest times with my mom, I was with her.

I failed that year at school. Even when I was there I was checked out. I learned nothing, I cared about nothing. It is so hard to care about school when your life changes so much.

My memories of my Dad at that age were that if we wanted to see him we had to call him to set something up. How is that fair to put that on your children? I was five years old, I didn’t know what was going on. My mom Bless her, never said one bad thing about my father. That was one way she protected all of us was by not speaking about what happened between them. Their business was their business. I did hear her cry some nights. I cried myself to sleep so many nights feeling so alone. Feeling as if everyone had left me and not understanding what I had done wrong to make everyone leave.

I would Pray to my Papa every night for years to come home. That he could fix everything. That everything was ok when he was alive… My Mommy and Daddy were together my family was whole.

If I could pick any age it would not be 5 unless it was to warn myself that life was going to be rough for awhile but good things come out in the end.

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the end of 2014

By the end of the year my Dear Grandmother Laura passed. She was old in years and it was expected a women of her age and well lets just say an amazing life to have to die at some point. But you never really grasp it at the time. She was our matriarch. The one who held the family together. The strong Norwegian tall, with size 13 mens shoes. When you came into her home you were family. You were always given a hot meal, a sweet treat and a warm bed if needed. My whole life I looked up to this women. This strong women. So truth be told, watching her failing health the last few years of her life was hard. When we would visit and she would say that she was ready to go home to her heavenly father. To see may Grandfather, my father who had passed on before her I could understand. It must be hard going from a strong independent women to a frail, helpless women depending on others.

She had what the Drs thought to be a stroke. But with no test we will never know? I don’t believe them. She laid there in her bed for a week no water, no food. I brought my son the first day and she was non responsive. he was so upset. crying, telling me that he wished one more time to hear her tell the story how she was Grand Marshall in the parade and they road together in the convertible. It was their story! I told him to tell her the story. He did. As he told her the story she opened her eyes, as he got to the part where she taught him how to wave she lifted her arm and started to wave at him… We all jumped up and started screaming. Oh Tommy Boy! (that is what my Grandmother always referred to my son as. It took Tommy Boy to get Grandma to wake up!! That day and part of the next she was with us. She couldn’t speak, she communicated with her eyes and she moved her hands a little. I took my son home and came back with my daughter and we ended up staying the entire week. taking care of her almost up until the end. Swabbing her mouth, rubbing her head, hands, telling her we loved her, making she she was comfortable. Making the plans for after…

She died on Halloween.

2015 Bucket List (in no special order)

I have decided after reading a few peoples lists that I am going about this “New Year” Thing the wrong way. I am usually not a half empty glass kind of gal but the way this year has started I feel like I keep getting kicked in the stomach. Over, and over again. Instead of focusing on the bad in my life, the things I may not be able to change why not have some things to look forward to. Even if I cant do them all. Lord knows that I spend A lot of time home sick, in bed or at the hospital or Dr’s BUT… I can still make a list, I can still try! There is nothing wrong with having something to look at that can at least put a smile on my face when I see it:) and if worst gets to worst and I am unable to do most of it I will start to drasticly change my lsit to things that I am able to do such as spend my days in my PJs or Drink Coffee:) lol

1. Visit New Orleans!
2. Visit the dog park at least once a month
3. take a jewelry making class
4. visit my mom more
5. Go to my Dads grave…
6. Fish with my husband
7. take less medication
8. try for a long infusion again to see if it helps, maybe in Vegas?
9. go on walks
10. Go to California and stick my feet in the sand
11. take a cooking class
12. clamming
13. Sell my house
14. Buy a new house
15. Find a home for my bunny
16. Get my Invisalign off!
17. Have a better relationship with my husband
18. Have a better relationship with my kids
19. take kids to zoo, aquarium, or parks??
20. Drive to Portland Oregon and visit with friends and family I haven’t seen in a long time.
21. painting or pottery class?
22. crabbing
23. Try canoeing
24. hiking to the falls I liked as a kid
25. spend less
26. save more
27. pay off my debt
28. Do more for our business, and be happy about it:)
29. take more time to build relationships with my friends
30. Take a random road trip somewhere new…
31. Shrimping
32. panning for gold
33. stop being afraid of going out in public
34. Keep up on emails
35. Get a camper and drive cross country
36. Mani Pedi
37. Bowling
38. Do something for someone else
39. eat out at one of my favorite restaurants
40. Go to a State I haven’t been yet!!!
41. Camping
42. Meditation
43. read at least one book a month (even if my head hurts)
44. collect more records
45. Stay in a hotel, just because
46. once a week call a random family member just to catch up…
47. mend broken relationships, at least the ones that can be fixed.
48. Buy something that I have always wanted, even if I don’t know what it is yet?
49. take some classes to get out of the house
50. Make it out to Alaska! To the Kenai

Extras (just incase I want to switch out my top 50 or do more:) Every day I keep thinking of more things I want to do! Or… things that I would rather do than a few things on my list. So here we go with 2015!!!

51. Visit with Friends
52. Blog more
53. ‘pay it Forward’ initiative
54. Watch less TV?? lol
55. Find my Bunny a new home
56. Pray more, or at least remember to give it to god when I try to give up.
57. Get a massage
59. finish painting house, inside and out
60.

My Greatest Loss

In the spirit of sharing.. Something I have never opened up about. The loss of my father

The first week of February I went out to dinner with my step mom (Diane) my and and my two kids. The food was good the company was even better. Who knew that would be the last meal I would have with my dad, the last time I heard him say “I love you.” The next morning I get a call from Diane that my dad collapsed at work and was being rushed to the hospital.¬†

I jumped in my car, called my siblings, get to the hospital and we wait. I see the ambulance pull in. I ran outside and I see them pulling my dad out of the ambulance on a stretcher, not breathing on his own. We go back in and we wait. Scared and unsure what was going on.

We go in to see him, it smells of death everywhere. He is in a medical induced coma. They are running tests to see if he is even still inside , alive. He has tubes down his throat for him to breath. His stomach pumping up and down with each breath forced into his lungs. I remember sitting there with my sister telling him “Daddy, your girls are here for you, we love you so much! Please wake up and come back o us.”

It was so emotional with each person talking to him, with every look at him, with every thought of loosing him.

We waited almost a week. Waited while they ran tests. While we prayed, stayed by his bed side. The smell of death in the air. We waited. We couldn’t leave him. Until the choice had to be made. We had to ¬†make the choice, and we made it.

Everyone said what they needed to say, we prayed, we gathered together and all at once the machine went off. The pumping stopped… The beeping stopped… He took one last deep breath and then stopped. I fell to the ground in disbelief …

My Daddy was dead