Remember 

15 years ago.  One of those events that it seems like it just happened no matter how much time has passed. One of those events you wish you could forget but never can. 

I was almost 6 months pregnant with Peanut. I couldn’t bear to watch the coverage after a while. What kind of world was I bringing this baby into? Would she be safe?  I had no answers and couldn’t do anything but hope and pray it would be ok.  

The Class of 2020 is the first class that will read about this attack and were not alive when it happened. They are lucky in a way that they don’t know the horror of watching the events unfold, over and over and over again.  

I did not know anyone who died that day, but I will still take time to remember and pray for those who did. I will always remember.  

God Bless us all.  All lives matter.  

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Father’s Day from an Orphan’ s Point of View

Sorry for the long silence. Things have been a bit rough and I haven’t been able to write. This was written last year, but I felt too vulnerable publishing it. But now I think I need to, to help me as I try harder to stay in the present and not obsess over the past or worry about the future.

“All you had to do was say you’re sorry. I would have forgiven you.” Postcard on http://www.Postsecret.com

I didn’t become an orphan in the usual way, where both parents passed away at the same time. No, that label took 16 years to take hold, the first parent leaving when I was 13, the other parent leaving when I was 29. One left by choice, the other by circumstance.

The one who left by choice was the man who helped my mother have me. When he decided she wasn’t enough woman for him and walked out to be with his girlfriend, he turned my world upside down. I was 13, already dealing with hormones and body changes and mood swings and I didn’t understand. I was angry, and felt forced to spend time with him and felt like he didn’t want to be with me either. Then one day when he dropped me off after a particularly awkward “visit” he said, “I was never a 13 year old girl. I don’t know how to relate to you.” And those were his last words to me.

I have tried through the years to contact him because I couldn’t bear to not be in his life. I realize now he should have tried to contact me, because he couldn’t bear to not be in MY life. My college graduation, my first marriage, the celebration of earning a Master’s degree. I wrote so many letters, some I sent, some I didn’t because I was upset and afraid to send them, telling him, begging him, to come to these events, that nothing from the past would matter. And no response. I don’t know why I kept trying, to be honest. Maybe I thought he wasn’t getting the letters, that his new wife was intercepting them so if I kept trying maybe she would relent or he would get to the mail first. Then his mother died and the obituary said she was survived by one grandchild. I was the oldest of two. But though that hurt me, I still had hope that he would find me and say he was sorry, can we please start over and try to fix our relationship. And I would have!

But then on whatever day I had the service for AngelMom, I knew he would do something to show that he cared for her, for me. I wasn’t sure if I wanted him there, it would distract from her if he did come and probably upset me more, but I hoped he would at least send flowers or a card or something. Again, no response, on the day I most needed one. Maybe he didn’t know where I lived but he could have sent something to the funeral home! So that is the day I decided he was dead to me and I was officially an orphan.

But deciding I was an orphan didn’t turn off the feelings completely, I guess because the mind knows you’re lying to yourself, that it’s not factual what you believe. Two months later I married Mr. G, and then a little over two years later I had Peanut, and then four years after that I had Bird, and through all these years I would see him around town. I so wanted to go up to him and say, here are your beautiful grandchildren that you will never have the joy of knowing! I looked just like him, he would always know me right? Of course he would! I never went up to him because I was afraid he would pretend he didn’t know me, and by rejecting me again he would reject my children as well and they didn’t deserve that. I couldn’t bear that. So I kept quiet and made myself miserable.

What’s funny is that those hateful last words put me on a path for what I thought was normal male behavior. Three boyfriends followed after he left us, one almost turned into a husband, and one did turn into a husband, and they all felt that I wasn’t enough for them and found another woman, yet I felt it was my fault. I was a teenager or in my early 20s, I didn’t even know who I was or what I wanted, how could it be my fault???? Did any of them really love me? I don’t know. It made me distrustful and guarded and reluctant to love.

I did have positive male influence in my life, and I appreciate those men who were or still are in my life, and the new men who have accepted me as family! But it’s not the same as the blood relationship and believe it or not, Father’s Day is almost as unbearable as Mother’s Day! It’s the same ache, same jealousy I have watching other women with their mothers. My children will only have Mr. G’s parents as grandparents and that makes me sad. But unfortunately there is nothing I can do about that. I can’t try anymore. He doesn’t want to be in my life. I have to accept it. And yet, I will still think of him today and wonder if he thinks of me too. I can’t help it. I wish I could. He has hurt me enough.

To the man who helped my mother have me: None of this is my fault. It’s yours. All you had to do was say you’re sorry.

Sad but Thankful

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Wishing I was already stuffed from breakfast. Angel Mom always made traditions that were slightly different from what everyone else did.  Although I miss her and am sad today,  I am thankful that I have happy memories of things she did for me to show how much she loved me. May my friends and followers find something to be thankful for and enjoy this blessed day!

Another Birthday Without You

Re-blogging a Miss You Mom letter from last year. Today is now 16 years without her call, and it still is the biggest littlest thing I miss on my birthday.

Dear Mom, I’ve been sad this week. My birthday is coming up. For 15 years my birthdays have not started right. They’ve been as ok as they can be without you, but they’ll never start right again. It seemed like every year you would get up earlier than the previous year to call me and be the first person to sing happy birthday to me, so I would start my special day happy. It was so silly, but it was your special thing you had to do for me and I only pretended I was upset at the early call. I hope you knew I wasn’t really upset. And then in the fall of 1998, my last call came but I didn’t know it was my last call. I wish I had known. I would have had you sing it a couple of times so I could have recorded it, because now I can’t remember what it sounded like when you sang it. In the fall of 1999, my birthday came and the phone was silent. I didn’t want to leave the house because I still wasn’t used to you being gone and I didn’t want to miss your call. Even though it was my birthday I was not as happy about it as I used to be because it didn’t start right. Now when I wake up on my birthday, I have to remind myself not to wait for the phone to ring. I miss you Mom.

I’m Tired of Wishing

The place where I go to visit Angel Mom is down the road from my office. And while there are no significant dates that make me miss her just now, I have been taking her flowers almost every Monday, and sometimes go back again later in the week just to sit with her and talk. 

I talk to her all the time anyway, but there’s something about the peacefulness of the cemetery that is calming, and makes me feel closer to her. 

This was “our” conversation today:
Mommy, I wish you could see Peanut run cross country. I wish you could see Bird play basketball. I wish you could hear them talk and be excited about things they are learning in school. I wish you could hug me and I could feel it. I wish I could call you and get advice when my life with Peanut is too much and I don’t know what to do.  I wish you could make me laugh when I feel sad. I wish I didn’t have to come here to visit you. 

And her response: silence.

I’m tired of wishing for her. I’m tired of watching other people who are being impatient with their mothers. I’m tired of using losing her as an example to try and explain to Peanut how lucky she actually is, and Peanut not really caring. I’m tired of being a motherless daughter.

As I sat there feeling sorry for myself a beautiful and huge orange Monarch butterfly appeared and was fluttering around and almost flew into my van. Then, as my signs from Heaven usually do, the butterfly just disappeared. Although the butterfly was beautiful it didn’t comfort me much this time.  I found myself wishing it had stayed longer. 

Just another wish I’m tired of making.

Flashback to the 16th Post

Today is the anniversary of my worst day. I just can’t be snarky or funny or complain about my family today. I can’t be “on.” So I thought since it’s been 16 seconds I mean years, I would repost my 16th post. I have no idea what it is yet, hope it’s something good but that feels like the right thing to do.

But before I get to that, I had my purse and some stuff for the cemetery on the passenger seat and when I lifted my purse I found a penny. My current purse is a clutch and has 2 sections that can be zipped closed so it looks like one section. It was closed and I haven’t driven anyone. 🙂 ❤ Thanks Mom.

Ok so here it is, number 16.  Kinda odd but it’s about love, so I’m interpreting that as I’m loved whether it’s in the physical world or from Heaven.

Sad Saturday

“In one of the stars I shall be living. In one of them I shall be laughing. And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing when you look at the sky at night.”
The Little Prince,  Antoine de Saint Exupery

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Just two years before...

It was a busy day today doing stuff around the house. Angel Mom’s anniversary is next week so I think I was making myself busy so I wouldn’t think too much and be sad. This is the last and worst event of the annual miserable with grief period, so no, I really don’t want to have any more sadness piled onto what I’m going to feel, and what I have already felt.

Apparently that doesn’t work for everyone. I was asked why I was sad,  since she didn’t pass on today’s date, the anniversary is next week. Thanks so much for that reminder! As if I could ever forget! Now, I do understand that thinking because this person’s mother is still alive, but still, that is simply an insensitive statement in my opinion.

Maybe I’m sad because I feel as if I’m failing as Peanut’s mom, and can’t ask the only person besides me who knows what I was like at 13 for advice. Maybe I’m sad because Bloom County has returned after 25 years and Angel Mom would be beyond ecstatic at that and would likely still have her enormous stuffed Opus on her bookshelf, and I miss her laughter. Maybe I’m sad because I am reminded that I have no blood relatives who are not my children who love me. Maybe I’m just sad. Why do I need a reason, and why must I only feel this way when the calendar says it makes sense for me to? Believe me, I would much rather know I would be  sad only on holidays, her birthday and her anniversary and the other days I would be the happiest person on earth.  But it doesn’t work that way. Yeah it was 16 years ago but I still remember every second of that day like it happened five minutes ago. God, how I want to forget!  There are always random days where something reminds me of what I’ve lost. Grief truly does ebb and flow but never goes away. So please don’t tell me what I need to do or when for getting through this tsunami of grief. Yes it was a long time ago but an event that turns your life upside down and inside out can’t just be gotten over. After next week I will return to my new normal self,  please be patient and don’t judge me for still feeling however I feel!

So until you really understand, you don’t really understand. You don’t get to tell me when it’s OK for me to be sad. My sadness comes when it wants whether it is her anniversary day or a random day. But it’s mine, not yours. I’ll deal with it the way I need to, as much or as little as I need to. You can help me by just saying you’re there for me. That’s all I want to hear.

Sorry for Wimping Out

So I had an almost 1,000 word post about how I felt about Father’s Day, and how for me it’s almost as unbearable as Mother’s Day since I became an orphan first by choice and then by circumstance. But then I felt that it was too much of me out there, too much vulnerability, and I couldn’t do it. I’m sorry.

But I’ll share this quote: “All you had to do was say you’re sorry. I would have forgiven you.” Postcard on http://www.Postsecret.com

When Butterflies Appear

butterfly“Butterflies hover and feathers appear whenever lost loved ones and Angels are near.”

I have started a pattern of writing every other night, and mentioned it last week, and now as usual when I have a self-imposed writing schedule I am getting writer’s block. It happened when I did the November blog challenge, and again when I started my Miss You Monday letters. I was going to write about taking Peanut bathing suit shopping, (good story but not in the mood to describe it since she’s ignoring me so I don’t want to “summon” her and have her bite my head off just for breathing), and then considered the NAACP President calling herself Trans-racial (ridiculous in my opinion but didn’t feel like dealing with any backlash.) So I did the obvious thing writers do when they have writer’s block and opened my laptop and just sat here half watching a recorded (almost said taped! HA! 🙂 ) DVR of America’s Got Talent and flipping through Pinterest for inspiration.

So apparently Angel Mom wants to be the topic of conversation tonight because I found that quote that I had pinned a few days ago. 😛 I’ve written about my signs and dreams before. It’s funny how you really don’t pay attention to things until they apply to you. I had always been interested in pennies from Heaven and spiritual events, but never really thought they were real until July 23, 1999. After that I decided they were real because that was the only comfort I could find in the nightmare that had become my new normal.

Sunday I wrote about how I was feeling discouraged because my fundraiser hasn’t gotten the response I hoped for and my Horoscope confirmed that I’ve become apathetic and I need to change my attitude and I will succeed. Even so I hadn’t really done anything since last week, and with only 11 days left I can’t really afford to not work on finalizing the details. Last night I was looking at the Facebook page of a girl at Bird’s daycare who is hosting a Color Run on Saturday to benefit Penn State’s Four Diamonds Fund (Peanut and I are going to walk….so either you’ll have a great happy story or a great angry story…stay tuned!) in honor of Nephew, and I was a little mopey because her mother is very involved and proud of her and signed up to run or walk too. I wished that my mom was here to help me with my event and tell me she was proud of me for trying so hard to make this nice for everyone involved, and tell me of course it would be great because I was in charge of it and I learned how to plan amazingly successful events from her.

Today I had my women’s networking luncheon and as I was leaving a yellow butterfly appeared and fluttered wildly around, maybe so I would notice it, and then disappeared. Now it was very hot and humid, and there was a heavy rain shower while we were eating and there was still wind when I left although the sun was out. Typically there aren’t bugs around when it rains or when it’s windy. And it really did appear and disappear. They always do when they’re my signs. Most of the time I see yellow butterflies in ridiculous places…at my second floor window or in front of my windshield on the highway. That’s how I know they’re my signs.

The point of all this is I was encouraged by the butterfly’s appearance. After dinner I organized my raffle prizes, cleared out my scrap room a bit, worked on creating the prize info cards and updated my income spreadsheet and felt at peace. It will all come together and it will be ok no matter how much is raised, whatever I raise is money Nephew didn’t have before. Butterflies are proof that she is with me, and I love butterflies even more now, especially the yellow ones.

You Really Don’t Want to Know

Today a new writer friend made the comment that her friend’s mother had recently passed away, even after all these years I still can’t bring myself to say died, and she said to her friend that she doesn’t want to know how her friend feels, but she will be there for her to help her get through it. I said, “No, you really don’t want to know how she feels.” I was not offended by her comment, and hope her friend wasn’t, and I wasn’t trying to offend her by agreeing. Being in the motherless daughter club is not prestigious. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, and wish we all would not be sisters through loss.

I also said that I have learned how to be happy in spite of my grief but I have not gotten over it. I will never get over it. I am thankful that people who don’t know how awful this loss is have finally stopped telling me it’s been long enough and they don’t understand why I am still mourning and I need to get over it. They don’t understand and the only thing I need to get over is the need to listen to them or the guilt I sometimes feel because yeah it has been a long time and I have things I should be happy about. But that’s the thing. It’s been 16 years since my life changed forever. The hole in my heart is still as big as it was that last day of my old normal. Time has put a thin layer of new normal over the hole that allows me to have moments of happiness so I can enjoy my new life, but I also now have constant feelings of how bittersweet whatever I’m happy about is because I can’t share it with my mother. Then the thin layer of normalcy gets ripped off, usually by something completely mundane and unexpected, and I’m drowning in the grief again. It’s a constant swing and I can’t stay on the positive side long enough. It’s exhausting at times.

I’ve been very emotional lately. Mother’s Day just passed and soon will be her birthday and then her anniversary. I hate to rush time but it will be easier when August is here and I have a break before the painful holidays begin again. I haven’t written because I’ve been busy with my new job and my fundraising event, and I’ve been ok about that, but it seems that whenever I talk to the woman I talked to today I am inspired to write again. Perhaps Mom is talking to me through her, and giving me “permission” to write about her, or maybe I just have built up enough sadness and it needs to be released and it’s just coincidence that I talked about it today. I don’t know. I just wish that the pain would go away.