Friday, June 28, 2013

All kinds of crazy

My word! This month has been all kinds of crazy.  Not only did we go through Jacob's birthday which I will get too, but we had all sorts of stuff hit the fan these past few weeks. The list includes: our employee turning in his two weeks notice, two of our main business trucks breaking down at the same time, and I learned Tucker, my beloved dog of ten years, had cancer.  That was all in one week.

Then the next week a big oak tree near the house got struck by lightning and in the process it fried our cable modem and the invisible dog fence. Tucker continued to go down hill, and I stressed, fussed, and grappled over what to do.  I scheduled an appointment to have her put down, only to turn right around and cancel it because she really wasn't ready yet.  Then, I found an adorable 5 week old kitty in our old barn which added a whole new dynamic to our already chaotic household.  That was last week. 

This week has been generally busy.  I've continued to watch Tucker like a hawk, hovering and fussing and grappling over when it was time to let her go.  It's really no fun knowing a decision like that is right around the corner.  This dog has been with me through thick and thin for ten years.  I've known her longer than my husband. Through it all, she's always been this steady sweet presence.  Yesterday turned out to be the day we let her go, and while I'll miss her, I know the time was right.  I'm not sure exactly if dogs go to heaven.  The Bible indicates that animals are in heaven, the lion will lay down with the lamb, etc.  So I'd like to think there's a sweet dog and a sweet little boy hanging out together tonight. 

I find it so interesting that the one week this month I thought would be the most stressful, Jacob's birthday, was actually the calmest.  My hardest days were the weekend before which was when I wrote that last post.  I woke up the next Monday and just felt more at peace. I really expected to be an emotional mess the whole week, but amazingly the days rolled along quite smoothly.  The night before his birthday Zack and I did a lantern release.  We have a really cool rock on the property that juts out over the lake, and we released it from there.  We each wrote him a note on the lantern before we lit it and let it go.  We cried. We prayed.  It was deeply emotional for us, but we were both very thankful we had that time together.  I think getting all that out the night before may have helped us deal with his actual birthday better.  The texts and emails started coming in that morning and while I appreciated every single one, each one made me cry.  Each  a little stab to the heart, and a reminder of why June 7th even matters and why it's not just any other day.  The rest of the afternoon was pretty low key.  My mom came over and started preparing for our supper that night, and I took a walk.  As I was walking, I reflected on the year and how often I had walked those steps,  soooo many times in tears.  It was odd to me that on that walk, of all walks, I didn't cry. 

We spent the rest of the evening with our parents, and everyone had a really nice time.  I woke up Saturday morning feeling relieved and thankful to have such a huge milestone behind me.  Last June, it was hard to see my way through one day let alone a whole year.  I know I wrote in my last post that this past year has been swallowed by grief, and while that's true, I can see and appreciate how very far I've come.  To those who of you who prayed us through Jacob's birthday and have prayed us through this whole year....thank you, thank you, thank you!  I appreciate it more than you know!

 Here are just a few pics from the past few weeks:

Partial rainbow the week of Jacob's birthday


 
Cards and flowers from my angel momma friends, Rachel & Tina
 
Lightning strike - upper right

Clessie kitty

Tucker girl

Last pic of me and Tuck together 
 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

June

Well, here it is.  Jacob's birthday is just five days away. I could tell you it was close without ever looking at a calendar. I can just tell by the ache in my chest.  It doesn't seem possible really.  This year has been such a blur.  A whole year completely swallowed up by grief, well except this last month.  May has been the best month I've had, well, in a year.  I'm so thankful to finally be feeling more like my old self, and I hate that his birthday is barreling down on me.  I know I have to stop and deal with all the emotion and all the memoires, and I don't want to yet.  I'm also afraid on some level I guess, afraid that I'll lose the footing it's taken so long to gain.  I know God doesn't want me to think that way.  Doesn't He say like a gazillion times in the Bible...Do Not Fear...Do Not Be Afraid.  I know He didn't bring me this far to let me go now.  He carried me through June 6th & 7th last year, and He'll carry me again.  Just this year, I don't have the insulation of shock. 

 It's strange really the things that trigger the memories.  I came home from running some errands the other day, and just the feel of the house reminded me of the afternoon we got back home from the hospital.  I don't know what it was exactly that made it feel like that.  Maybe it was the trees outside or the angle of the sun or the coolness of the house but whatever it was reminded me of the silence and emptiness I felt the day we came home.  I think my memories of this week last year are more detailed than other memories of my pregnancy. It's probably because I replayed those days over and over again in the aftermath of Jacob's death, just trying to remember anything that might explain why we lost him.

I'm planning a very low key week.  I don't have anywhere I have to be at any specific time.  I'm hoping to stay busy enough but still have the quite time I need to process through all this.  We're closing our business for the last half of the week, so we don't have to deal with any of that.  Zack and I are planning some quite time by ourselves to honor Jacob in our own way, and we're also getting together with our parents on his birthday.  It's definitely not how I pictured his first birthday, but I think we'll laugh and have a nice time.  As much as I can, I want to honor his sweet little life and my deep love for him rather than wallowing in his death.  I think the fact that we've survived this past year is something to celebrate in a way.  Everyone says the first year is always the hardest, and I'm almost through the first year, thank heavens.  I know a magic switch won't flip on June 8th and everything be all hunky dory, but I pray I feel some relief getting this milestone behind me.

If you're reading this, would you please pray for me and Zack and our families.  Please pray the days ahead are as gentle as they can be.  Also, please pray for simple things like healthy appetites and plenty of sleep.  I've been dealing with some sleep issues the past few days. Please pray that God will be huge for us this week and that we'll feel the comfort, peace, and strength that only He can provide.