Tuesday, August 7, 2012

A new place, a new world, a new life filled with new feelings.

It has felt like forever since I have updated my blog and so many things have changed. I believe that this blog will slowly change as I do. I was standing in the kitchen loading the dishwasher so full of thoughts about being a mother, about life and where we are right now in this place in the world and I felt a strong desire to put my thoughts "out there" or as if it were...pen to paper figuratively of course.

Our military lifestyle once again has taken us to a new place, and we find ourselves in a state I have never been to and I am not afraid to admit that in the short time we have been here...I have fallen in love.

It is scary to move around from place to place without the chance to plant roots. I think my children have often thought it was easy for their Dad and I but though I am easy going and have always done my best to see the positive in every place, not every experience is the greatest and I have been ready to move on from some places we have lived. It is also hard to feel as if there is no "HOME". My husband and I both are from different states where are families are and yet we have seen all these beautiful states, and in our mid-forties wonder where in the world as we face "retirement" in the next 10 years where "HOME" will be. It literally chokes me to think that "HOME" might be in a place where my children might not choose to live near but I then realize that I myself, am no where near my family and have wandered the country for years. I am a nomad...and so are my children as a result of my choice to marry my sweetheart. It is a hard life to wander, to like one place and leave or dislike another and be forced to stay for a while. This is just the life we live. Today I told my husband I felt as though I might be disloyal in some way if I decided that there was another place that I decided felt like "home" to me. Would I be a traitor of some sort? Would I be a renegade? However, when I have lived close to home (relatively speaking) family visits though more often have still been few and relationships are not what I ever hoped they would be "if we lived close to home". I don't believe they ever will be.

My sweet husband and I now stand on the edge of this cliff of our life, looking out on the future. The next couple of years are critical as we watch 2 more children graduate and my husband passes the threshold of 20 years in the Coast Guard. This is the time when the rug can be pulled out from under our feet and so we have to be "Prepared"...very prepared. We still have Justin to continue raising and decide where we want to go, and what we want to do and where we want "home" to be. We just moved to this place and it is really hard because it is already feeling like home. THIS feels as a place that I could grow in to the person I have longed to be. THIS is the place I feel already as if I could find lasting, and real friendships. THIS is a place I feel as I could grow personally, emotionally, physically, intellectually and THIS is a place that could challenge me to do things I never dreamed I might do.

I don't know what the future holds...we have been here all of 6 weeks maybe, we haven't seen the "yucky" time of the year even but we actually look forward to the changes and the challenges.

All of my "chicks" are in the nest for now...one I hope can find her way to a job, schooling and a life of independence. Another child will spend only 2 short years here before we send her back to where she calls her home "Texas" to go to college. One will be lucky enough to do all of his 4 years of High School here and he seems to be happy and engaged in the new life we have here. Then my little jellybean loves his new yard, picking berries, playing Frisbee in the yard with Daddy and all the adventures that he has already had in the short time we've been here.

This isn't nirvana, but it's a good place to be for now and I feel hopeful for the future for our family. If nothing else...the next four years should be a tremendous joy ride...not without the usual twists and turns.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Over the past 10 days a bridge has been built for which I can finally cross. I suppose I am so guilty of saying one thing but yet doing another. I am fiercely in love with my children and struggle to put barriers between us that make them feel as though I am not there. It's not much but it's enough to get a phone call that starts with a "Hey Mom" and ends with an "I love you" and reminds me of that very real young lady I know. Every once in a while I offer something here or there to help, a bus ticket, an alarm clock...just something simple. She doesn't ask for anything but advice sometimes and when I have offered just a little bit more help she has countered with a genuine "I'm alright" and I believe she is truly trying to do this on her own. I worry for her safety and I can sense her fear as well. She is doing this....she is, and I am proud of her. She doesn't have much...but what little she has...she is making on her own.

Monday, February 6, 2012

I hate how sometimes I feel like I did something wrong but I don't know exactly what it was. Then I sit and wonder if I am over analyzing a situations and pretending there is a "vibe" that really doesn't exist yet it seems to. My husband tells me that "these are just teenagers" and their moods. I suppose that is a real possibility but yet it makes me sad because I feel a total WALL, like hand in the face, "you really irritate me"aura exists between myself and one of mine here in the house. I don't know what I am supposed to do. I have apologized for everything I can possibly think of but it makes me feel like I am on the bottom of the bucket for motherhood I suppose. Crap. Gah...I just don't know what else I am supposed to do sometimes.

I want to get angry, really angry and stomp and throw and tantrum and say things that would probably be ridiculous because it may simply be as my husband says..."teenagers and their moods".

Who would look stupid then?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

When I was a little girl I ate lunch in the school cafeteria and I hated it. The food was pretty yuck, not to mention the marbled melamine 6 compartment lunch trays in off putting colors made it even worse. I never got to take my lunch and envied kids who did, like Ellen Pickens. She was tall, skinny and had the most beautiful hand writing I had ever seen. I thought she was pretty awesome especially because she thought the stuff on my lunch tray was cooler than the same stuff her Mom packed in her lunch sack. I couldn't believe that her Mom actually got up every morning and made her lunch. Heck, I couldn't believe that she even saw her Mom in the mornings before school.   Ellen and I had an arrangement and we often traded  treats at the lunch table. She had these giant Mexican cookies the size of my palms that I loved. They tasted like pure vanilla and something my Mom would never buy so for her to offer me these for my fruit cocktail or hardened brownie was a no brainer. I always felt like I came out ahead on that one. 

This morning I was making lunch for my "Jellybean" as I do every morning. I packed up his snack of pretzels and threw those in his back pack and then started in on the PBJ sandwich that I carefully cut in a circle and it hit me how fun this part of being a Mom is. I do love grabbing this and that and putting it in the lunch box. It's fun for me to think of all the silly conversations that are taking place as straws are being wiggled out of plastic and forced in juice boxes, noses are being wrinkled at the "same thing" they are sent again for lunch, and the trades going on at those tiny round tables. I picture shoe laces untied, little feet swinging, napkins floating to the floor, and mouths wide open chewing, while chatter reaches audible levels irritating the cafeteria ladies.  I feel a part of this event of my little boy's day even though I am not there and it all starts with the simple act of making a sandwich. 


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I can breathe....

Sounds so odd to say that but I feel like I can. I have this sense of relief right now because of a simple and brief conversation with my daughter today. She finally called me and just the few details she gave me made me feel a bit of comfort that she is okay. Things are not perfect but she is alright and that puts my mind at ease. I have been trying to reach her because I wanted there to be some sort of open communication between us. I wanted to her to know we haven't shut her out of our lives and I hoped she hadn't shut us out of hers.

I asked her if she had groceries and she said she was being sent on her way to her new place with a box of Ramen from her boyfriend so I offered a gift card to a local grocery store. I must admit in my excitement to help (yeah, I said it...H.E.L.P.) and show her that I do care...I sent her a care package with a couple of old towels we had here, some shampoo she left behind, her hair brushes and then I went to the grocery store myself and got some toiletry items, some laundry soap and some girly "emergency supplies" so that she wouldn't have to spend her grocery money on that. For an extra treat I got a "Taco Bell" cheap gift card and a "Little Caesars Pizza" card. I know it's everything I said I wouldn't do but quite honestly, there is NOTHING that has made me feel better since she left than THIS. So if this is what it took, then I am okay with it. At least I know that for a couple of weeks she will have food and some of things she needs to get by. For me...I can breathe a little easier and perhaps turn my brain off for a while. I hope so.

Friday, January 13, 2012

From "Unsettling to Unsettling", waiting for "Settling" to arrive....

I do my best thinking in the car, driving with the music playing. I have always told the kids that music reaches me the way other things can't. It pierces me deep. I must sound like a "beet nick" saying that. I don't even know if I spelled that right.

Driving to an appointment this morning I was once again in tears thinking and talking aloud as I often do. I realize that I must think I sound pretty good to myself. I decided to ME, I make perfect sense. Looking back at all the times I have sat and talked, and talked and talked to my eldest she probably tuned me out long before I ever finished. My heart was in the right place but now it seems I was seeing more of "ME" sitting there and less of her. I was making her, and her problems just like "what I did", or would tell her "what my parents" did. I talked way more than I listened. I tried to force her to talk when she did not want  to and that made her very upset. She never wanted me to see her cry or emotional because she didn't want me to get to her. She didn't want me to think I had control over her. I never wanted control over her, I just hated to leave things unresolved an so I pressed matters until a volcanic eruption of emotions by the both of us, and then some sense of resolution. It was wrong.

Today I sit and feel unsettled and keep waiting for the settled feelings but they don't come. I cannot control the actions of my daughter. I can keep her in my prayers and take care of me and the rest of my family. That is what I can control.

I take comfort in the fact that she has been raised by a family who loves her dearly. She comes from a family where eating dinner together as a family every night was ritual. Just the other night her little 6 year old brother said "too bad K is not here. You know it's not a big family dinner unless K is here". She has been raised being taught that she can do whatever she sets her mind to. She comes from a big family with Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles and cousins who love her. She has been taught from the moment she was placed in my arms that she is a Child of God. I told her once while sitting in a parking lot recently that no matter what she professed to me to ever believe that I would respect her if I knew she had really studied and gained a knowledge and testimony of it on her own....but, I wanted her to know that a seed was planted deep inside of her and it would always be there no matter what. She will always know she is a child of our Heavenly Father, that will be with her no matter her decisions in life. Whatever she chooses, that feeling will tug at her heart.

Someone gave me advice  today... STOP, and just leave her be. I have left her alone. I think it was more a "STOP" and don't take anymore of you away emotionally from your husband or the rest of your kids because of this. She wants this, let her spread her wings, see what happens. In theory it sounds so easy to say, and type but to do this for me and by that I mean for me to quit worrying, to quit thinking horrible things is incredibly difficult. You see that picture of the ferris wheel with the overgrowth on it? Yeah, that is what I want the ride I am on to look like. I want it to stop moving, the whole carnival to move along, and things to just grow up around it and it become a distant memory. I don't want my sweet daughter to be a memory, just all this heartache.