I”m not sure what to title this entry…I’m hoping it will come to me by the time I’m done writing….
Life is difficult, wonderful, frustrating, confusing, hard, fun, crazy. I wish I had a playbook to help me through some of the unusual events of life.
Right now I’m going through a divorce with my husband of 16 years. His mom is dying of lung cancer. So many different emotions can go through my head in a given day…in a given hour. Should I go see her before she dies? Should I not see her. Do I go to the funeral and sit with the family or sit wtih friends? Should I send flowers with my family (parents/siblings) or grieve as the Daughter In Law or both? What is proper funeral etiquette for a STBX daughter-in-law? I don’t think there are any books about that.
I’m hoping as we deal with her death in the next days/week, that these questions will be answered natuarally. That things will just fall into place so that I can make the right choices without creating any drama, confusion, gossip, etc.
As far as the title goes…I guess that about sums it up.
Yesterday and today brought me down memory lane! I was at a dance show for my daughter in St. Cloud and posted that on Facebook. My best friend from highschool immediately sent me a fb message about “remember when”. Her and I were on the HighSchool dance team together. One of our competitions was in St. Cloud in the same gym that I was at watching my daughter. She was recalling how when we were there for our dance competition, we had snuck alcohol in our bags and drank wine coolers on the bus ride home from the competition. (This was a very long time ago! The stupid things we did when we were young…I could write a whole other blog about those experiences) I’ll never forget that night! We had so much fun and the fact that she remembered it to by seeing a simple FB post made me smile!
(our danceline picture – 20+ years ago)
My other trip down memory lane happend through facebook too…a highschool guy friend and I happened to be online at the same time. He messaged me wondering how i was doing. I said I’m hanging in there. I then told him what was going on in my life right now, but that I was doing ok. We ended up messaging for well over an hour about new and old times.
It always amazes me that there are some people you can not talk to for years, but a simple memory or statement can get you thinking about them and you are immediatley flooded with memories from the past.
Today I helped serve lunch at a funeral that took place at my church. The funeral was for a distant relative of my STBX. I knew some of his relatives would be there and I was a little nervous and excited at the same time about seeing them. His grandma, 2 aunts and an uncle were there. It was so nice to see them and talk to them. We gave each other hugs and they asked me to please stay in touch with them. It meant so much to me! His aunt and uncle said how disappointed they were that they didn’t receive a Christmas card from the girls and I. I explained that I had a whole box of Christmas cards that didn’t get mailed out because they were ordered before the separation. I also promised them that I would be sure to keep them on my list and stay in touch throughout the year with them so they can continue to watch the girls grow and keep up to date with what they are doing.
So many times we think of a divorce only affecting the immediate family, but we forget about all the friendships that develop between the extended family members, co-workers, and others.
This weekend, my girls had a dance show. In the past, my STBX and I would go to the show together (as most couples do) and meet his mom, sister, aunt, and any other relatives that could make it. This year, I went alone. STBX was there with his sister and aunt and I was a little nervous about how it would all go.
I ended up saving seats for some other dance friends…as I sat there alone, I wondered if my STBX would walk in and think I was saving the seats for him. That would have created an awkward moment!
I was also worried, because we used to always go out for dinner after these events with any family members that came. This year, I had plans after the show so we had to rush out of there. I felt bad for my girls that all these old traditions were changing.
On the way home, I was apologizing that we couldn’t go out for dinner like we always did before. They said, it’s not that big of deal mom. We have other plans. It made me smile. It also made me realize that it’s probally alot harder for adults to change than it is for kids. Kids can live one day at a time and not stress about the unknown events. I am hoping I can learn to do that and just look forward to the unknown, the New.
Another First that I recently experienced was not having my daughters for a whole weekend.
It started on a Friday evening. I dropped them off to be with their dad. Thank goodness for good friends, they made sure I was busy & entertained Friday night.
On Saturday, I had a whole list of things I wanted to accomplish (laundry, go for a run, put a shelf together, wrap gifts, etc.). They weren’t exciting, but I did feel a sense of accomplishment as I completed each item. Later that day, I went and picked up some movies and also Chinese Take Out. (I hardly ever get to pick the restaurant)
I went home, ate my Chinese take-out and watched movies. As I went to bed that night, I reflected on the day and had to laugh out loud when I realized I had not talked to anybody the entire day and only made 1 noise all day long.
(If you are wondering what that 1 noise was…I was putting the shelf together for my daughter’s birthday gift, lost my balance, fell on it and broke it which caused me to yell out one word)
The next day I got up and went to church. When the girls got home, the noise and busy activity was so welcomed, even though the first 1 ½ hours was spent looking for a “lost” ipod that got left at their dad’s house and another 2 hours trying to scrape burnt bathrobe off of our fireplace glass (my daughter was sitting in front of the fireplace, not realizing it was burning a big hole through her brand new bathrobe that she got for a birthday gift…that’s another story).
While there are so many times I’ve wished for peace and quiet with no interruptions, that day made me realize how precious noises and company are. In fact, everytime I tell my girls to “shhhh”, I think back to that day of peace and quiet and decide I would much rather have them there and wanting to talk to me then to be alone. Do I look forward to my alone time? Definately. Would I want to always be alone? Absolutely Not. You need to find the balance and the good in each situation, whether alone or in a room full of people.
I recently separated from my husband of 16 years. I’ve experienced so many “firsts” already and it’s only been 1 1/2 months. I feel better after I write about things, so I started this blog about my firsts, how I handeled it and what I learned from each one. Some of these may be humorous, while others may be a bit more serious. I’m hoping others will be able to relate to my “firsts” and offer advice, or maybe my posts will help someone else that is going through the same “firsts”.
The 1st “first” that I’m going to share is experiencing the first snowstorm. The first major snowfall of the year, we received over 12 inches of heavy wet snow. Typically, if it snowed, my husband was the one that took care of the snow removal. Now with him out of the house, that’s my responsibility (along with everything else). I am fortunate enough to have a couple of good friends that move snow so I lined them up to take care of my driveway. They were generous enough to do it for free as long as I didn’t need it done first thing in the morning. I thought that sounded great! Little did I know that I wouldn’t get blown out until 9:30 at night! Nothing like feeling trapped in your own house, but I survived!
The task of shoveling the sidewalk and deck were all mine. Did I mention that there was over 12 inches of snow?! The sidewalk went ok. Then it was on to the deck. That was quite the job. While I was shoveling the piles and piles of snow & throwing it over the deck railing, I was cussing the world! I wished that some kind person would drive by and take pity on me out there or that one of my neighbors would look out their window and come over to help me, but that didn’t happen. It was up to me to complete the job. Just me. That was the hardest workout I’ve ever had in my life. However, when it was all done, I felt such a sense of accomplishment & pride, it was somehow worth it. I just pray we don’t get another 12 inch snow fall anytime soon!!!