Memories


Memories can be good and they can be bad. 


I’ve, recently, been reliving that Wednesday, in my head for a few days now. 

Every time I lay down, and close my eyes for the night, memories bombard me. 

If you were a hot dog, would you eat yourself? I know I would! Smother myself in mustard and relish! I’d be DELICIOUS!”

Me calling, over and over, hoping for an answer, so I could yell at him for whatever he was doing, while not answering his phone. 

Me, driving like a bat-outta-hell to get to the fedex hub, HOPING to catch my beautiful, amazing, perfect husband cheating on me. 

Seeing the cop cars. 

Being pulled into an office.

The officer telling me that my husband was found dead. Then, proceeding to question me, about his medications, and any illnesses, etc. 


Making Brady drive to Mitch’s  biological father’s house, so I could tell them, in person. 

Making Brady drive just down the street, so I could tell Mitch’s younger brother. 

Driving back to Brady’s house, all while I’m trying to figure out how I am going to go on. How was I going to pay my bills? How was I going to be a single mother to a TEENAGER?! How?! Not even a why! I don’t think I’ve every truly wondered why, because I know, there will never be an answer that satisfies me. I am selfish. I want him with me, but in some spirit world, or heaven, or hell. HERE! I want him HERE! 


Sitting on my brother’s couch, discussing how we were going to tell Megan. That was my biggest fear. Far more terrifying than figuring out how to pay our bills, and keep a roof over our heads. 

My brain telling me “If you do this wrong, it will scar her, for the rest of her life!” 

Sitting on my brother’s couch, for the entire day, staring out the window, waiting for a “got ya!” 

The “GOT YA!” that never came. 

The “got ya” that haunts my dreams. 

I cried, silently, most of the time. The mornings after he passed, I cried aloud, in my brother’s kitchen. I would find myself crouched on the floor, hands wrapped around a coffee cup, trying to just BE. Not be normal, not be happy, but to just BE. 

I have read many responses to the question “Once you’re a widow, are you always a widow?”

Not every Widow agrees on this one. 

I say yes. No matter how you deal with widowhood, no matter how you get through each day, you become a stronger, wiser version of yourself. That’s something that stays with you forever. So, yes. No matter I I get married in 10 years, or become an old cat lady, I will forever be a widow. At least that’s how I feel about myself. I don’t take anything for granted, anymore. I cherish every minute I spend with family, friends, OCR family, and work family. It’s important to me, that they know they are appreciated. Everyone for their own things. 

Some push me to be physically stronger, and show me how to accomplish my goals. Some push me to be mentally stronger, more confident, and to continue to believe in myself. Some reassure me, that it’s okay to be myself! If someone doesn’t like me for being myself, they aren’t worth my efforts. 

Maybe I have been an emotional wreck, this August, because we are in Leo time, and it’s tearing this Libra to shreds? Maybe it’s because Mitch’s bday, followed by the anniversary of our “couple” status, are both this month. Maybe it’s just normal to have awful months, mentally, when this happens? I don’t know. I’ll just flow with it. 

#OneFootInFromtOfTheOther

Detached from All of the People and Things.


It’s been a weird week. Actually, it’s been a weird couple of weeks. There have been a lot of tears and my chest has felt so empty. I think the tears come from the emptiness I’m feeling. There have been parts of days where I feel hollow. 
Remember when the numbness ebbed? This is like that. I haven’t felt he emptiness of Mitch’s absence. I have felt his absence, absolutely. But the feeling inside is something different. If I felt it, at the beginning, I probably wouldn’t be where I am right now. Just like the heartache that came weeks after, slowly working it’s way into existence, at a pace my mind could handle, the true feeling of something missing, is here. It’s prominent this week. It hurts like hell. 

But I will survive this. I will learn something from this. I will continue to take one step at a time. 

Remember how I decided to put my phone into do not disturb mode? 

I have continued to leave my phone on do not disturb, so I’m not always on it, or checking every noise. 

I am not posting a million things a day,  on social media.  

I’m doing more. I’m back in the gym, again. I’m hanging out with friends. I am attempting to learn more about friends, family, and even my coworkers. 

I hadn’t realized how detached I had become. I haven’t been listening. I haven’t asked questions. I haven’t been involved. 

I used to be the BEST listener! I could listen to my friends talk, all damn day, every day. 

Now, and for a while, I’ve been “checking out”, and not even realizing it. I could take the easy way out, and blame social media. I could blame it on losing Mitch so suddenly. But, I don’t believe that’s true. I think losing Mitch has made it more frequent. I’ve also noticed that the less time I spend on social media, the better I am at being involved with the people who are right in front of me. 

I have days where I don’t want to talk to anyone, at all. I have days where I have so much to say, much of which is completely inappropriate, and not everyone needs to hear. I have days where hearing certain people talk, makes me cringe. 

I’m not sure where it stems from, or why I have these days. I love my friends and family. This is why you’ll never know that your voice is driving me insane. It’s most likely not your fault.  Unless you’re a frequent liar. That drives me crazy… 

Today, my daughter played a softball game for just over 2 hours. Her team won the championship! I was present, actually paying attention to the whole game. I didn’t check Facebook, or instagram, or anything else. I sat, I chatted with family and other softball parents  that came, and I watched. 

It’s pretty sad how much effort I feel like it takes to get out of the social media stronghold. 

Yes, sure, I have some REAL friends on social media, and they like all my status updates and photos I upload. Really, though, real friends are the ones that make time for you. They’re the ones who are present. They don’t try to avoid you, when you may be at your worst, because they KNOW who you are, when you’re at your best, and believe you’re worth it. 

It’s the ones who aren’t real friends, who see you at your worst and hightail it. And, honestly, that’s something to be thankful for. Just say goodbye, remove them from your life, and take another step. 

One step… Then, another. 

Every single encounter we make, is meant to be. Be it terrible or wonderful, it was supposed to happen. Period. 

Last night, I had a few drinks with my cousin, and one of my very good friends, that I see on occasion. We ended up at my cousins, going through her interesting witchy things. And no. No spell casting or anything The-Craft-like. Just Tarot cards and a book with a description of people based on their month and day of birth. 

Mine was pretty legit. Not going to lie. 

There were a couple of dates that jumped out at me. One of the “beneficial” dates was actually Mitch’s birthday. 8/18. 

One of the “fatal attractions” or “challenging” dates was 1/25. Pretty crazy, huh? 

When we did the Tarot cards, (no making fun! Or judging!), I could LITERALLY (not figuratively) feel a slight tug, in the palm of my hand, as I passed over certain cards. No big deal, I read what the cards meant, and interpreted accordingly. 




When I watched as my friend closed her eyes, and waved her hand slowly over the cards, I saw 2 cards rise off of the table, ever so slightly,  and they wound up being the cards that she chose. 

I couldn’t believe that happened! 

Her cards were so much her, it was interesting. 

I’ll leave you with the following pictures, of Mitch’s description, based on birthdate. What do YOU think? 



Below, you’ll see my birthdate under “benificial”.  10/10 Also, you’ll notice our anniversary and his mother’s birthday under “soul mates” 5/24. 

***I apologize now, because I am too tired to go through and edit anything. I hope it’s not too messed up. 😜***

A Rough Couple Of Days

Yesterday marked 5 months that Mitch has been gone. 

Yesterday, we were informed a family member has 2 weeks- 2 months left with us. 
Today, Megan had softball. 

She had a rough day behind the plate. She felt like she was screwing everything up. 

She started to cry. She cried hard, and for quite some time. 

The girls almost had to forfeit the game, because without Megan on the field, we didn’t have enough players to finish the game. 

I didn’t tell her to go out there. I told coach that I could never tell her to do that. Her emotional health is far more important to me, than any win or loss. 

Watching her cry, uncontrollably, for so many other reasons, outside of softball, hurt so bad. When she stood up, and walked out onto the ball field, by her own choice, was heart wrenching. Everyone out there watching the game, cheered for her. Even the other team’s parents were cheering for her. 

As the only person out there, that really understands what she is dealing with, and not being able to do anything to make it better, it sucks. I am her mom. I am supposed to comfort her when she is hurting. I can’t.

 All I can do is hold her until the tears stop.  When her tears stop, and she steps away, my heart breaks a little. Tears well up, and I fight them down.  

I have my good days, and I have my bad days. But, I don’t think my worst days hurt me as badly as Meg’s bad days do. 

I love her, so very deeply, that I can’t handle it when she is hurting. I mean, I CAN but I don’t like it, at all. 

It hurts. Bad. We miss him. 

5 Months Without Mitch.

While Mitch was alive, I was always worried that I would die before him. I was afraid that I would die, and leave him a single father, caring for our daughter. I was afraid he was cursed, you know. I didn’t want to die and leave him a widower. That wouldn’t be fair. He lost his mom, when he was very young. He grew up, pretty rough. 

That day, when I drove out to FedEx, exactly 5 months ago, and the officer dragged me into an office, and told me he was found, unresponsive, I was broken. I was broken, but, I was also relieved that I didn’t die, and leave HIM broken. 

I can’t say that he would be doing better or worse, right now, in this position. I CAN say, that I am so glad he doesn’t have to be the one going through this. That would not have been fair for him, at all. And, yes, I know that life isn’t fair. 

Someone posted this photo, on Facebook, and they said “thoughts?” 

I responded with this: 

“I’ve been widowed for almost 5 months. I am breathing, standing, walking, climbing, running, sprinting, hurdling, etc. it sucks so so so bad! But here’s my reasoning: My husband was the kind of man who made the BEST of EVERY situation. It didn’t matter what the situation was, he looked at the silver lining. He found the good that came from every bad thing. He taught me to do the same. With my husband’s death, at the young age of 34, of natural causes (heart failure), many many family and friends flocked to their doctor, to have their hearts checked. Some found they were healthy as could be, others found they needed further checking, because their white blood count was off, or their whatever was bad. It’s been a hell of a ride this last 4.95 months, and I am heart-broken, but I have a 12 year old daughter who NEEDS me! My husband has passed on, so he no longer NEEDS me. He would NOT have wanted me to screw up my and our daughter’s lives, because I am sad, or heartbroken, or have depressed days. He would have said “look, Tabbie, my death saved my dad’s life!” Because it DID! So, I will sprint, and breathe, and walk, dance and stand. Some days I may wobble, or fall, but I will keep putting one foot in front of the other. I hate this, but I will SURVIVE! We all will.”
I feel like people believe I make widowhood look easy. I don’t try to. This isn’t easy, at all.  I try to live each day. I try to make our lives happy, even when we are sad. I go through times where I feel guilty for thinking other men are attractive, or if I have sexual thoughts about them. I also know that having those thoughts and feelings are totally normal. I am only 34! I am a HEALTHY 34. I am not acting on each thought. That’s where we would have a problem.  But, thinking about things is not a crime. It’s just something that happens. 

Again, not easy. 

One income. I’ve had people say, “Well, there’s one less person, so one less income shouldn’t be too bad.” Well, when you are used to living with double the money you have, it is a TOTAL adjustment! 

I know, that the things people say, are meant to be comforting, and coming from some people, it is comforting. When it comes from someone I am not close to, it doesn’t come out like that. It isn’t taken like that. For some reason, it really is irritating. 

I have always known that I adapt to change pretty well. I typicallyvadapt to change better than most people I know. However, I didn’t realize how well adapted I am, until it was brought to my attention, that I am USED to sleeping alone, already. I have no desire to have someone sleeping next to me. I thought I was going to need friends to sleepover, in the beginning, and I never did. Meg and I slept on an air mattress together for nearly 3 weeks, and both of us got so uncomfortable, she started sleeping on the couch, until we moved into our apartment. I have reverted back to being a bed-hog. I am regretting my decision, to buy a queen bed, rather than a king. I had a king bed, when I was a teenager. I think when Meg gets a “new bed” it’ll be my bed, and I’m getting a king. All that room! 

Now, unrealistically speaking, I would give everything I own away, if it meant I could share a floor with Mitch. But, that’s unrealistic. I can’t BRING HIM BACK! No matter how much I want it, it doesn’t work like that. No matter how hard I cry, or how much I miss him, it just doesn’t work that way. 

Maybe, when my time comes, I’ll see him again. He was a good person. I try to be a good person. Maybe that means our afterlives will be good, if there really is an afterlife. 

I could totally see Mitch and I haunting people, together. Hilariously haunting family and close friends. 

Honestly, I still don’t get signs from Mitch. I haven’t dreamed about him, except the only 2 dreams I had. Maybe he leaves me alone, because he is afraid I’ll lose my shit? Maybe he leaves me alone because I am “doing just fine”? Maybe he thinks I need to continue to “be the inspiration” that I have become? Maybe, he doesn’t visit me, because he is afraid I will be committed to a psych ward, and leave Meg without a parent? Maybe he doesn’t visit, because I told him he wasn’t allowed to haunt me? Jokingly, of course, because when one dies, they can do whatever they want. 😉 And maybe, JUST maybe, he doesn’t visit, because he can’t. Maybe that’s not a true option, after death. Whatever the case, he doesn’t visit me or leave me signs, like I hear everyone else talk about. I have little tidbits of “oh my, Mitch would have said that!” But, nothing too ghostly. 

So, here I sit, 5 months without my Mitchell. I am stronger than I have ever been, in all of my life. I am happy in all areas of life except the part where I am a widow. I still truly believe that EVERYTHING happens for a reason, even if we haven’t figured out that reason, yet. 

Maybe it’s something so simple as my words, helping someone get through THEIR grieving process, just a little bit easier? Who knows if I’ll EVER know the reasoning behind Mitch’s death, outside of the scientific, biological part. 

Keep Living. 

One. Foot. In. Front. Of. The. Other. 

Skip. Hop. Run. Jump. Walk. 

Keep going. 

Father’s Day Without Dad

So, today has been such a bittersweet, heart happy/wrenching kind of day. 

Let’s talk about the good, because, we all already know about the bad. My heart has been so heavy, today, but we managed to have so much fun, as well.

Today started early. 4:30am, up and making breakfast for my 2 brothers, my mom and Megan. 

My two brothers and I went out on the ocean, to do some deep sea fishing. It was amazing. 2 hours in, my little brother started to puke. We told him to take the Dramamine, but he refused, saying he would be fine. HA! He puked like 5 times, and I got the first one recorded! I laughed so hard! 
And I said “I told you to take that stuff!” 

He hugged the palm tree when he got to dry land. 

Since he wasn’t going to make it the remaining 4 hours, Brady and I swapped him out for our mom, and went back out there. It was so amazing. Mom caught fish. I caught fish. Brady caught fish. And before the swap, Nate caught some too! 

I caught a Cobie and had to throw it back, but it was pretty cool! It looked like a mini shark! He held it because we had to keep it alive to send home, so it wouldn’t be too hurt. 


Here were the ones we caught and got to keep. Plus the two Nate caught before his barfin’ party. 


We used Brady’s GoPro to record us sending Mitch’s ash into the ocean. And of course, the wind changed and blew his ash right into our faces! That definitely lightened the mood. 

Megan didn’t want to go out that far in the ocean, so she lounged around, all day, until we got back, and Brady decided to take her for a Helicopter ride! Yes! You read that correctly! Meg went up into a helicopter, and proceeded to “squish” things below, just like her dad would have done. 

When we arrived, we went straight to the beach, and sent Mitch out. He would have loved every little bit of this vacation.

 Every. Little. Thing. 


Please, excuse my face. This was immediately after our 16 hour drive. 

I hate that Megan has to spend this, and every following Father’s Day, without her amazing father. It isn’t fair. But, LIFE isn’t fair. Thank the gods we already know and understand this, because if we didn’t, we would be angry. We would be defeated. We would be far more broken than we are. 

Happy Father’s Day, Mitchell John. We miss you. We love you. We will carry on your laughter, and your positive attitude toward life. We will continue to live our lives to the fullest, and never miss an opportunity to be kind to someone.  Our lives have been forever altered with your passing, but we will make it! You were the most amazing father, husband, and friend. You gave us the greatest gift (outside of your love) of all! Your family, who is OUR family, still. I am SO happy that Meg was old enough to have that bond with you. It’s such an amazing thing. 

Being Open About Everything

Since the untimely death of my husband, I have become quite the over-sharer. I mean that in a good way. I talk a LOT. I explain everything.

I know, I know. I don’t need to explain myself to anyone for anything. I know. I don’t care.

However, when I see someone who I haven’t seen in a while, and they ask me where I have been, I tell them, and the shock on their faces and in their whole demeanor is crazy! I don’t mean to be so blunt, but there’s just no easy way to say it.

“Well, I was off of work for 3 and a half weeks, because my husband passed in January, and then I had to change my schedule, so I haven’t been able to work later than 3pm, on a regular basis.”

That’s why you never see me anymore.

I am the friend, that is trying to figure out how to stay healthy, care for my child, and for myself, as well as work full-time, and take care of everything.

Let me get real, real quick. This may be unbelievable, but, keep in mind, Mitch and I started dating when I was 17 years old. Hell, we moved in together when I was still 17. (any young ones reading, please, do not risk it! Not everyone is as lucky as Mitch and I were, and I wouldn’t change a thing about how we got and stayed together.)

I have NEVER, in all of my adult life, lived on my own. Never. I have never been responsible for paying bills, outside of my auto-deposited paychecks. I have never been in this situation before.  This is one hell of a learning curve. And there is no class for this. (well, I am sure there is, but it probably costs money.)

I have allotted dates from each month to have people over for a ladies night. I find these dates by going over my calendar and making sure that I don’t have a run scheduled that weekend, that I am not on call that weekend, and that I don’t have anywhere to be, early in the mornings that weekend. There’s a lot of thought that goes into planning my ladies’ nights. I may even host a poker night, soon. It’s sounding pretty Mitch-like. And poker nights were always a good time. So, Chuck, don’t go spending those quarters! I will take them off of your hands soon. 😉

Again, I just want to ask my friends and family to forgive me, and bear with me, while I figure all of this out. I may not come to your parties, or get-together, or I may plan my ladies night the same night that you have something planned, but that’s only because I only have that weekend free. It doesn’t mean I love you any less.

And for anyone who is reading, that doesn’t know me, but knows someone who is going through what I am going through, give them time to figure it all out. It’s a lot to process, and get through. Your friend doesn’t love you less. Your friend still wants you around. Your friend probably misses you. And your friend is probably exhausted all of the time. It’s okay. It takes time. And for some reason, there isn’t that extra couple of hours in each day, that should be automatic in the event of a spouse’s death.

Every widow should get an extra 2 hours, every night, just to sleep, or finish the dishes, or prep lunches for the next day. All of the things that may have been taken care of by the deceased partner, and the widow is now all on the widow. It’s overwhelming sometimes. It really and truly is.

I remember when we first moved into the apartment, I FORGOT to make dinner! Really?! I jumped up from the table and said, “Oh crap! I need to make dinner!” It was 7:30pm. Mitch cooked. I never made dinner. It was a running joke with Megan and Mitch, that “If Daddy ever left or died, I would starve, because Mommy doesn’t cook!” I cook. It’s another learning curve, but I will master it.

One day, I will have free time, again. It may not be soon, but it’ll come.

I have arranged extra time, for ME-TIME to start working out again. Baby steps in the right direction. That’s all we can hope for. Right?

16299077_1549101705119445_1186151054756513787_n
Mitch and my brother at my cousin’s wedding.

That Next Chapter…

No one looks forward to what may come, after the loss of their spouse. I know, from experience. I find myself, quite frequently, looking back. Because, back there, that’s where the best memories of my life lay.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I know that Megan and I are going to create many more amazing memories, but, right now, my favorite things are the things that happened when Mitch was right here, next to me. Next to us.

And, that’s okay.

Someone told me, today, “It takes about 2 years to really feel like you are starting that next chapter, in your life.”

I disagree, but totally understand why that may be the understood perception of grieving, or how the majority feel. I’ve never really been part of the “majority”.  I am a very matter-of-fact. I already feel like my “next chapter” is being written. I am very aware that this is really happening. Even as I wish it weren’t true, and that I was actually stuck in a very bad nightmare. I get it. I know THIS is my life now. THIS is OUR life. (Meg and I).

It doesn’t make it hurt any less. It doesn’t really change anything, except my ability to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Life demands that I keep moving. I don’t do it for distraction or because I need something to do. I do it, because I have bills to pay, and a roof to keep over our heads. I do it, to put food on the table. I do it, because it is what Mitch would have wanted me to do. I do it, because I want to be happy, although, if and when I am happy again, it won’t be the same. It will be with a  new take on life.

I can tell you, I already see a difference in my attitude towards certain things. Today, I am almost positive they were talking about me, and only because, before I lost Mitch, it would be an accurate statement, I overheard someone say they were glad the one person was in that case, because “another person would be freaking out.” 2 Months ago, that would have been true. Now, I have bigger things to freak out about. I am not mad or hurt by that assessment. I am not even positive it was me they were speaking of. But, ya know, “if the shoe fits…”

Today was the monday-iest, monday ever! I was late to work, had to do total joint surgeries (meaning we had a lot of things to open, to even get that party started), and our OR was missing many essential items. Normally, I’d be freaking out. Now, I was complaining, no lie, but, I told myself, “It could always be worse.” Because it can. I can’t get TRULY mad, because someone had an “off” night, especially because I was having such an off day. I dropped instruments, and had to make my nurses run and grab more. My reps were probably ready to strangle me, because of an issue with a rep tray. But, what can you do? The shit already happened. Is dwelling on it going to make it better? NO! It’s going to cause me unnecessary stress, that I don’t need in my life, right now. I will choose to learn from what happened, and try to prevent it, next time, but really, most things that happened today, aren’t really preventable, by myself or my circulating nurse.

Shit. Happens. PERIOD.  In most cases, there is always tomorrow. So, on the crappiest days, instead of dwelling on the crap, I am going to vow to make tomorrow better.

You have two choices, really. YOU decide your own happiness. You can choose to laugh at your mistakes, and try not to make them again, or you can beat yourself up and not move on. Who do you think is going to be a happier person, in life?

On how we are doing:

I am doing. I am coping. I am working through the emotions that I didn’t plan on having until I was senile. I am throwing all of my heart at my daughter. I am making sure we are keeping our friends and family close, for our sake, and for theirs. I know having us around makes people sad, sometimes, but it also brings joy to them, because we are like having a little piece of Mitch around (mostly Meg, because she is TOTALLY her father’s daughter.)

 

Megan is doing good. I know she is hurting, just like I am. Mitch and I were never really ones to wear our feelings for the world to see, because our feelings are just that. Ours. Meg told me that she had many nightmares that one of us (Mitch or me) died, and in the dreams, we couldn’t afford to live. We couldn’t afford food or rent. She said “It still sucks and it hurts really bad, but, it’s not as bad as my nightmares. At least we can afford to pay our bills, and buy food.”  She is so matter-of-fact. Like her father and myself. She’s lucky like that.

She knows that my “door” is always open. She can talk to me ANYTIME she feels ready, and that she isn’t being rushed to talk, or pushed to stay quiet about it.

 

We talk about the things that daddy would do, in certain situations, and laugh, because most of the things he would do, were hilarious, ridiculous, and absurd. I will miss that, so much! Things like walking into Target, and he would pull his pants up as high as they would go, and tuck his shirt in, just to embarrass Megan. Or, when we would go to the mall, he would flap his arms and “Kaw! KawKaw!” like he was a bird. And one of my favorite Mitch Memories, was our VERY FIRST trip to Victoria’s Secret, as a couple. I was talking to him, and I turned to look at him, and he wasn’t right beside me anymore. He had fallen back, waiting on me to notice. And when I found him, we had pulled a mannequin bra down and was groping the breast. I nearly died of embarrassment, but was laughing so hard I nearly peed my pants. That moment, was the one that shaped me into the woman I became. ❤

Live Freely.

Laugh A Lot.

Love Fiercely.

Forgive Often.

Make an impression!

10458877_891341704215653_7547159440007083675_n
This was the first annual Framily Picnic that Mitch created, so family would stay in contact through the “non-holiday” seasons.
10521531_931176563565500_751498562412625209_n
I have no idea why he taped his hands together, but, I do recall him asking me to help get the tape off, and I was laughing so hard because he was trying to eat the pizza without his hands.

Feeling Guilty When Laughing

I have to say, it pains me, when I find something funny. I feel like “Oh My God! I shouldn’t be laughing! MY HUSBAND DIED!”

This comes about, because, this morning, I was watching this super cute video of toddlers who were terrified of their shadows, and I was LAUGHING! The kids were just so darned cute, and so afraid and trying to get away from those shadows. It was hilarious.

Pang! I felt so ashamed, and guilty for laughing.

I went to the grocery store with Megan. We have Urn necklaces, so we take Mitch with us, everywhere we go. Megan forgot her necklace today, and she and I joked about how bad she was for leaving daddy at home, but it was okay, because I brought him. (I didn’t forget my necklace.)

Pang!

I go in and start grabbing things that are on my list. I go to the onions, and grab one of the bags, that the store provides, and open it up to put my onions in. THUNK. It landed on the floor. I was like, “wait. huh?” So, I tried 2 more times, unsuccessfully, to put onions in that damn bag, and sure as the sky is blue, there was a whole in that bag! REALLY?! It was a brand new bag! I just opened it! All the while I was trying to put the onions in the bag, I was laughing, Megan was laughing. We were at the grocery store, laughing in front of many people. We even had a bunch of people around us, laughing, too!

Pang! Will laughing ever come without guilt?

I often wonder how I am able to laugh. How I am doing this thing we call living. I know that life and living does go on. I do. I know that it is a MUST for us. So every morning, when I reach across my queen size bed, to that empty space, and realize it really isn’t a dream, I tell myself, “You are strong. You can do this. Megan needs you. And no matter how bad the day may be, you WILL survive it!”

I think, to answer my own questions, I am able to laugh, because that was a HUGE part of our family. Even when we were sick, or in a bad mood, we were laughing. I hope I stop feeling guilty every time I laugh, though. I remember telling Mitch, quite often, “Stop! You can’t make me laugh every time I am mad at you! It’s not fair!” He LOVED to make people laugh. He LOVED laughing. So, with that in my mind, it may help me. It hasn’t yet, but I am hoping it will.

Megan is going to be an AMAZING adult, and I am going to see to that! She will make an impact on the lives of all she meets, just like her daddy. I will be with her every step of the way. I will be there, making sure she doesn’t make the same stupid decisions I made as a teenager. And, I will be there when she DOES make stupid decisions, or has her heart broken, or gets the academic award. I will be there! The only way I can be sure to be there, is to LIVE!

ONE. FOOT. IN. FRONT. OF. THE. OTHER.

BREATHE…

dsc05485
Smiling, even though he was pushed, fully clothed, into the pool, with his phone in his pocket. THIS is the man he was!