Easter is coming up and that means more presents for the kids in their Easter baskets. I used to get so excited about presents and buying what I think would make them so happy. Keagan is still very easy. I had planned on a bike this year, since he needs to upgrade, but I think that will be something he will get when the weather finally gets nice and we can go pick it out. He has been obsessed with having his own suitcase. I don't know why this is - his stuff usually just goes in with mine - I don't really need another suitcase to lug around. Malea has her own though and I think he just wants his own. So - that is what he'll get. Easter is the worst for candy for him. Everything is chocolate. He doesn't really like jelly beans and goes back and forth on peeps. Maybe I'll get colored marshmallows this year - he loves marshmallows!
Malea is tough - she always loves to add music and probably would be fine with just an itunes card. I'm kind of tired of those though - I need something good to get her. Nothing makes her happy - so I'm not sure why I'm even trying here. A coupon for a day home in bed would probably make her happy - but I'm not going to do that.
It also brings so much sadness. This is the last major holiday he was with us for. We always got stuff for each other as well. He hated it at first, since he never did any of this as a kid - but I think he enjoyed it - especially once we had kids. He really loved all of the candy and would get excited about new candy that came out that he and Malea could share - they were both major chocolate lovers. We would talk about what to get the kids and he would usually help with the baskets the night before or the morning of (depending on whether he was working or not). He often would hide Easter eggs in the morning - if he did have to work since he would be home before anyone was up. I did love everything that he would get me and he always did get something. I'll never have the surprise gift again...my kids certainly don't seem to think of me to buy me anything. I'm dreading Mother's Day - it was the very last time he bought me anything. I know it is selfish - but it just makes me sad. Of course my Mom and sisters got me something for my birthday - and I loved that - but it just isn't the same. It isn't really even the present - it is just the thought of someone thinking of you and buying something you would like that is hard to get over.
I have never really been a positive person. Saying this - I didn't go around complaining all the time. I don't like to be around negative people - but have never really liked overly happy people either. I've just had several things happen in my life that made me know that things aren't always happy - there are bad people and bad things that happen every day.
I do always try to remind myself that things could be so much more difficult or worse. It is really hard though.
I would love for things to get better - they just aren't. Things keep getting worse - I keep getting more angry. Many of the things that are making me angry have to do with me getting walked all over and not standing up for myself. If I ever get to the point where I can do that - I will save myself so much anger. I just have so few people in my life - that I don't want to jeopardize the people that still actually associate with me.
Malea has been better for the most part. It is a struggle if Keagan and Malea have to be alone for more than 2 hours though. With Spring Break coming up - I'm not sure how I'm going to handle that. My work is still refusing to let me work from home and I don't have enough days to take the whole 7 days off. I was thinking of taking 3 as they want to go somewhere. I struggle with taking that time off from the house. My progress has been so slow the last few weeks and I feel like I'm never going to get to where I need to be - I'm going to end up still working on this house all summer. Malea still has a long way to go and I can't say we are moving forward yet - but we aren't getting worse right now - so that is a positive.
Keagan is Mr. Funny Man lately. He's just always saying things that are so hilarious - even if he doesn't mean them to be. He never gets mad if I laugh - so at least he doesn't think I'm making fun of him. It is nice that almost every day he does make me laugh. We haven't been reading as much as we should - but I made a point to work on that last week. He was excited to read this whole book for AR. Usually I have to help - but he did that one all on his own ;) He's all about eating healthy lately as well. Both kids actually are - so I need to help work on this for dinner. When I make dinner - we eat healthy, but being on the go so much - we eat out too much. Today Keagan only took healthy things in his lunch. With his allergies - fruit is about the only healthy thing for a snack you can send - so it is really difficult. Too bad he doesn't like raw veggies - that would help.
Next weekend Malea is going to Soul Blast where she'll listen to a bunch of Christian bands for 3 days and socialize with other youth around the area. It will be nice just to have Keagan to occupy while I'm at the house. I need to get some painting done - he wants to help - so we'll see how that goes ;) Hoping to get the tub installed, painting done and floor ready for tile. Progress is happening - you just wouldn't know from walking in and looking around.
I remember the days when I would I would count my kids ages by months. At 10 months - they were very mobile and really getting in to things. They learned a lot in their little 10 months.
It has been 10 months since I lost the greatest man I have ever known. I certainly don't feel like I've learned a lot in those 10 months - I've just survived and done what I had to do. I still miss him so much every day - probably more so as every day goes by. He was still here at this time last year - we were discussing our family vacation to California and trying to work around his busy schedule. I have a family trip planned for this year - but I know it just won't be the same. It will be in one of his most favorite places on Earth.
I just hope he would be proud of me - proud of what I have accomplished so far. Proud of how hard I'm trying. I know he wouldn't be proud that I still cry and how horrible our yard looks. He woudln't be proud with how angry I get - and how crabby I am when I'm annoyed that I can't do something - or that the kids don't help - or that I'm the only one that can tell when a trash can is full (this used to drive him nuts).
I'm still unsure of what the future holds - and still have no hope for my own future. I don't know how there could be something planned for me. Some day I hope to at least be content - happiness is something I can't even fathom.
Malea says that she'll never be happy with our family because he isn't here. I'd love to be able to tell her that it doesn't have to be that way - but I feel the same way. I can just tell her - your Dad would want you to be happy. He would want to live and make something of yourself. He wouldn't want your life to end when his did. I know you are thinking - well - shouldn't you take your own advice? It just isn't the same - she still can do so much. She has some good friends and so much potential. She still does talk of having kids and of going to college. She has so much to look forward to in the future.
Keagan is still so young for me to imagine his future. It is so much harder for me to picture him in a few years because I had so many hopes of his Dad teaching him sports and mountain biking together. He was Dave's little buddy outside - he was always helping him. I certainly can't teach him sports - not if he is to excel at anything. I encourage him to keep doing push ups and trying to help me with things. I can't wait until he's a little older and can lend some muscle to help me.
Malea and I decided that we must go somewhere warm next winter to break up how horrible the winters now are. I think I'll try to think of something to do this summer and figure out when we'll go.
Malea has always been much more mature than her peers. She has always acted older and because of being tall - also looked older than everyone. I've struggled with this worrying that she didn't have time to be a kid because she didn't always have interest in staying a little girl. She definitely would play with other kids - she loved to play outside especially. She would join in on the trampoline or climb trees - she has always loved climbing trees. She was generally always happy.
It is so hard to see her in this state. Even right after Dave died - she was still happy. I was so worried about that - she didn't seem to act like anything was happening and I just didn't understand it. I think because school was almost done for the year and then there was summer - it just didn't set in as much. I was around much more during that time - working from home all summer. Maybe that was why she was ok - because I was around. Then school started and she slowly got more and more secluded and more angry. She was no longer the happy girl we once knew.
Now, I know that just being a tween can bring on this kind of change. I really am not sure if that is it or not. She definitely brings up the anger with her Dad and any mention of him. Slowly I'm getting things out of her.
Last week she said she was having a hard time with not crying. She didn't want to cry because it was the only thing she could control. She's having issues with people saying stuff at school (she doesn't know who is saying this) - asking when she's going to break. She says people at school have no idea how she is. She says she has everyone fooled. She thinks she has me fooled and everyone around us - but she doesn't. I'm not the only one that has noticed how angry she is or how isolated she makes herself. Tonight she said that she's expected to be the responsible one - to hold the family together. She said I don't make her feel this way - but she thinks that everyone else does:( This breaks my heart. I feel so bad that she has to watch Keagan every day after school.
I so feel like I am failing. I can't seem to help her or get through to her. I tried so hard to be the Mom that her kids could talk to - but I'm not that Mom :( She still thinks she has to take care of me. I'm obviously not doing a good job with my grief and it sucks.
She said today also that there isn't a point in trying to be happy. Her Dad is never going to be there to walk her down the aisle, see her graduate, be there for a first child - so what is the point :(
I totally get her feelings - I've never been there - but I have had those thoughts for her - they were some of the first thoughts I had.
I know that Keagan is going to miss his Dad and need a Dad around - but I think I can find people that can help me with parts of what he needs. I don't think that I can find anyone to help with Malea - or to help fill the void that she needs :( I wish I could step up and be more for her...I wish I could put my grief aside and help her more.
Part of me wonders if her being so wise and mature is why she also is having a much harder time. Everyone says kids are resilient - she doesn't seem to be in that category. I don't know that she'll rise above this and be happy again.
Those of you that know me well - or don't know me very well will all know that when they first met me I didn't talk much. I'm very reserved and never feel like I have anything worth talking about. I also don't talk very loud (my kids may disagree here) so if it is a loud room - nobody will hear me anyway. Once you get to know me - you probably wish that I went back to not talking...lol. I don't think I'm one of those people that never shuts up though - and I definitely don't talk to just hear myself talk.
I feel so bad for Dave the first time we went out to lunch. We had a date already set up - but he thought we should just go to lunch before we actually went out. I don't know if he wanted to make sure he really wanted to spend an evening with me - or what - but that was what he said. For those that don't know - we worked together. He called me at my desk (I think - I can't remember) sometime during the week before our date asked if I wanted to go to lunch. I had to meet him there though because he forgot his glasses at home and would meet me there. I never understood why we had to drive separately - especially after finding out where he lived and that it was on the way to where we ate. I think it was a few reasons - 1) He didn't want me to see where he lived 2) He wanted the option to drive away without being stuck with me in the car. I totally thought he made up the glasses thing - but that became something he did pretty often - so I never questioned that again. We did have a nice lunch - I'm pretty sure he paid ;) He always paid - so I'm sure he did. I think I talked the entire time though! I had moved to this side of the state in July of 1998 and we went on this date in March of 1999 - so that was a long time without having friends to talk to. He probably thought - man - this girl doesn't shut up! He still went out with me though - so I couldn't have scared him off. He never complained about my talking that I can remember - unless I interrupted him.
Now - I feel like I'm back to that annoying over talking person :( The thing is though - if you ask me about my life - I'm probably going to cry :( It sucks - I'm such an emotional wreck. If you ask me about my house though - I won't cry about that....it is the one thing going well and doesn't cause too many issues (other than lack of time). That is a very limited list of topics to discuss - but lots of things to discuss there - since I'm doing just about everything there. Once the house is done in about 2 months - I'll go to back to having nothing to talk about.
I ran in to some friends that I had not seen or really talked to since Dave's funeral. They were sincerely asking me how I was - but I couldn't answer without crying - especially when they said - you know we always said we'd be there - but we haven't called and that sucks. At least they acknowledged that. They were probably Dave's closest friends and he talked to them pretty regularly - even though they live far away. Unfortunately they were here for someone that is not likely going to be with us much longer - but nice they could make the trip to see him one last time.
I would love to turn the tears off - and get through a normal conversation. So - just apologizing in advance that talking to me is no fun - so just talk about my house - that is the only way you'll get a normal conversation out of me.
I know my posts haven't been all that great lately....I'm not doing that horribly despite how my posts read. I'm just not in the best place - but I'm ok. So now on to my latest depressing sounding post.....every once in a while I just feel the need to blog how I'm feeling. I really don't post a lot of how I'm feeling (I keep everything bottled up until I explode - it isn't healthy I know). This is actually my only outlet though - and it makes me feel better. I suppose not many people probably read these and I guess I shouldn't care how they are taken - just goes back to my people pleasing. This is definitely not a people pleasing post - but I'm going to do it anyway.
It is not a surprise to anyone how much people like Dave and how it seemed that when he walked in to a room everything just got better. This was good and bad for me. I immediately knew once we started dating - or at least when we got engaged that everyone I knew liked him better than me. It was obvious. I don't blame anyone - he was a great guy. He really listened to people and appeared to actually be interested (he wasn't actually listening most of the time - but was great at pretending). I actually do listen to people - but I must not appear interested or something. I'm always thinking about a million things - and maybe it shows. I can do multiple things at once and I think people don't really think I can. Dave didn't believe me all the time - but I would always repeat back everything he said - it amazed him. I think part of my problem is my reactions to things - I'm very easy to read (so I've been told) and I'm sure people don't know what my reactions mean and I'm guessing they are generally taken the wrong way. I can't see my face - so I don't know. My kids always ask me, especially Keagan, "Mom, why are you making that face?" Half the time I don't know or it is a reaction to something I'm thinking about - other times they know the exact reason and will guess it right away. It is pretty funny I think - but probably not to other people. I've struggled for years with this...I can do well if I really think about it - I actually have a decent poker face - but it is only when I'm concentrating on one thing - which is very rare.
Anyway...sometimes it is really hard thinking about how the room will never light up when you walk in. It actually seems duller just because I walk in. Keagan is about the only one that thinks I'm still great. He remembers Dave as the disciplinarian - as he was much harder on Keagan than I was - but also spent more time with him. I have always been the disciplinarian with Malea - she had him wrapped around her finger. That is why things are so much harder for her. She doesn't think she can go to me and that is so hard. I am really trying to fix this - but fail pretty regularly.
It is really hard when your family would have easily traded you for him - I said that to him often that my family would keep him if something ever happened - and he knew it. The friends I used to keep in contact with would not seem him often due to his schedule - but always loved when they would see him.
I am actually really smart and can do lots of things. Dave would always brag about me with me going to school and juggling everything that I did. He was absolutely shocked when I figured out our major plumbing issue when we bought a sink that just didn't really work with our set up. It still works a year later ;) There is a still a lot I can't do - I'll never know much about cars (and don't really care to). If our lawnmower ever breaks - I won't have a clue how to fix it. I can't figure out our stupid weed wacker and how to change the wire or whatever it is called that cuts the weeds. I will never get up on our roof and try to put lights up or really do anything up there (luckily my kids both love to do that - so they'll have to). Our driveway and yard will never look as awesome as it did when he cleaned it - I just don't want to do that. My burgers will also never taste as good as his - but I do come close. I play the flute really well (even though I haven't played in quite a while) and I actually can and love to dance (though it is likely not many people will ever see this).
I know I already had low self esteem before Dave - but he helped me not to think of myself that way or put myself down. Sometimes it is just hard to face that nobody will ever lift me up like he did. Nobody will ever be able to say to me - you are great mother and our kids are so lucky to have you. He would be so upset at how I feel - but he would not be surprised.
I'm not posting this as a woe is me post. That is why I titled it The Hard Truth. People don't realize this is how it is and why it so much harder. It is hard to face this - but I have an must move forward and try not to think about it so much. I think about it almost every day - especially with how hard it has been with Malea.
I do feel blessed that I got to spend 15 years with him and he picked me. I don't think he ever felt that he was better than me but he did know that everyone liked him better. He did laugh that I would get so frustrated over it. Sometimes I got really mad - especially when he was annoying me. Why do people like you so much better? I can be fun and I'm smart....I never learned his secret :(
I don't know when I started seeking out praise. I know I was quite young though. I can't remember a time when I didn't try to make people happy. I wish someone would have told me long ago - that it would make life so much more difficult to try to do that. I know that this is a huge downfall of mine and I don't know how to break it.
I know it comes down to me being happy with myself. I've never felt good enough for anyone - and certainly never felt good enough for Dave. I always thought I was never enough. It sucks now that I wasted so much time thinking that - especially since I have heard from many people how he never complained (I'm sure there had to be times - but nobody has said that he actually did) about me and it was obvious that he loved me.
I have always thought I was an ok Mom - definitely not a bad one - but not a good one either. I don't spend enough time reading books to Keagan or teaching him to tie his shoes (long overdue...and I just caved and bought shoes that don't need to be tied....). I'm always mad at Malea about her lack of trying and not helping me. I am always trying to counteract things with her and praise her when she improves a grade or letting her know it is ok to cry. She finally did cry the other day and said that she doesn't cry because she feels it is the only thing she can control :( I totally get this feeling....I give her props for being able to control her emotions - I suck at doing that. I'm sure being 12 (I remember middle school being hard - I had no friends in 6th grade - but I don't remember a need to control anything - but who knows - maybe I was really a brat then.) Maybe this goes back to me being a people pleaser though as well...I tried to do everything I could and did my chores and kept up my grades - because I thought people would be mad at me. Malea doesn't care if people are mad at her...she's the complete opposite from me in that way. I care too much and she doesn't care enough. I think that is where and why we butt heads so much. She did care about her grades before Dave died - but she didn't care about her chores or helping out since forever. I do always get her to do something....she just doesn't stick with it.
I think Keagan is a people pleaser to a point. He loves to make people laugh and knows when I get mad he better try to help. He does always try - but gets distracted easily as well. He does get things done fairly quickly and usually doesn't just throw it in another room - he does actually put things away. If only I could get him to not be crazy! He really wants to pretty much run everywhere - why does he have so much energy??? I'm so looking forward to spring....he needs to get some outside play in! He always wants to go to the store with me - and most of the time I let him. When I get there though - I think I say every time - next time you are not coming with me! If only he could put this energy in to flipping this house with me....when we get there - he rarely wants to do anything! Although - he has loved using the sledge hammer and breaking up the tiles. Amazing how many like doing that - my siblings and niece are having a blast doing that - I hate the noise!
I did make some decisions on my own this week - buying some tile (the kids did weigh in a little here), buying a tub and the faucet. These may not sound big to you - but I never have just picked something on my own. I always asked Dave's opinion. It is hard picking stuff when it isn't yours and trying to make sure that it could appeal to hopefully everyone.
I didn't get much accomplished this weekend. Part of it was because of going shopping and looking for kitchen stuff, and my sister was in town - so we all got to see Nolan (still adorable and getting so big). I'm working on plumbing for the shower (was only a tub before) and realized it was a much bigger project than for a Sunday - so I just decided to come back this week and get started. I also needed some more stuff (it really sucks not having a home improvement store in Sturgis - they have a hardware store - but everything is much more expensive there - so I don't want to buy much there) so I'm just going to get that accomplished this weekend. Hopefully I'll have the tub installed with the plumbing and the floor set for the tile this weekend. Then I can focus on purchasing the toilet and sink and then do the walls. I will feel so much better to have at least one room beautified ;) I'm tired of looking at just demo work. I think this is why Nicole Christie (from Rehab Addict) seems to focus on one room at a time. At least that is how the show works - it has to help with seeing stuff come alive. I seem to get overwhelmed and go from room to room working on things. It would probably be much easier to just focus on 1 or 2 rooms - or maybe even one end of the house. I'm kind of doing one end now - since after the bathroom I'll work on the 3 bedrooms at that end of the house. At least those just need paint and carpet - looking forward to that - easy peasy ;)
I am a wife and mother of 2. I have many different interests - baking, home renovations, music, education ;)