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  • awalto29

Changing Habits

Well, so many things are changing in life and I am taking a step back to reflect and think about them. I am sorry that I have not been posting like I should be. I am in the middle of getting the house in order after the move....that in itself is a lot. I took on more hours at work, realizing now that I probably need to be honest with myself and my boss that more hours is too much and go back to my one day a week. It feels so ridiculous that after losing my girl, I cannot cope and do the things that I could before but I am learning to prioritize me. I am going to be honest with my boss later today and just let her know that I need to take a step back and go back to working one or two days. To be honest, the extra money has been nice....I would like to be working full time, wish that I could have handled finishing my MA already, etc....but I can't and I need to acknowledge that and focus on getting my life back in order.

Living 8 months, 245 days without Adeline has been debilitating. I want to scream right now, wake at 4:30 after getting up at 3:30. I don't sleep like normal. I haven't slept many full nights since the fire. In fact, the only ones that I have slept have been because I was so exhausted that I could not wake up from the dreams, the nightmares, the panic that haunt me each and every night. At times, I feel like my life before was all just a dream...that life could haven ever really been that amazing and then I see the memories on Facebook or the pictures of my baby surrounding me in my home and I know that it was all real and that the real nightmare is having to live without my girl. I just want my old life back. I want my little girl here with me and mentally I feel like I am losing it all of the time.

I am going to set some goals and priorities for myself. There are things that I want to accomplish for me, for my future. I have taken on some responsibilities that feel really good for my future. So, I am carving out goals, making myself a schedule and really working to stick to the things that will make my life a bit easier...and better. Here's to a better me, a me that can accomplish a few of my dreams.

I am going to post my goals to help hold me accountable. There are things that I could be doing to make myself feel better and yet here I am, not doing them....allowing myself to follow in pity and to just feel bad because things in life are not the way that I planned, are not the way that I envisioned them. I am going to make the necessary life changes to get me where I want to be. The end goal is to teach yoga classes for grief and trauma and meditation with hospice patients, to adjunct and teach history on a part time basis (a couple of classes each semester would be the dream), to research for my first book, and to volunteer and help others. I wish that I had the money to invest in a life coach, to have someone to have a weekly check in with to ensure that I am meeting the goals that I am setting for myself. I know that Adeline would want me to do these things.


  • To be able to finish my MA -- I have literally one class and one essay left and for some reason I don't feel like I accomplish this. I know that I can when I dig deep but I lack the discipline that I had and the time with the new job. The excuses stop now and I am carving out a minimum of 2 hours on my schedule five days a week to read and focus on that.

  • To be able to finish my yoga certification. I am going to be working at the pace of 1 hour a day at least 5 days a week to get this accomplished.

  • Daily yoga and workouts with my girl. Althea and I have planned to sit with our schedules tomorrow and carve out our workout times for the week. We are doing dance strength training and posture training together. This will be helpful for both of us.

  • Taking back control of my eating and nutrition. I have gotten so lazy. I am doing a one day cleanse on Monday and then will focus on how I can get back to really being conscious of what I eat.

  • To be honest with myself. I used to be able to do it all...I could manage doing so much, but now, not so much. I know this and need to be gentle with myself and honest. This starts with admitting that working 3 or 4 days a week is probably too much right now. I do like that I am earning more money for us as a family, but when I feel so overwhelmed all of the time on top of my anxiety with life, well I know that it is time to take a step back. It sucks that I can't be the me that I was before the fire, but I have to admit this and really focus on that fact.

  • To be able to volunteer a couple of hours each week and give back. Giving back makes me feel good. It gives me space to share that I give back to honor my girl. It makes me feel closer to Adeline doing good for others and the mental health benefits that I get from volunteering far outweigh the benefits that I would receive from working more and having more money.

So much in life has changed with the loss of my girl. The mental health effects are really starting to weigh me down and show that the PTSD is too much for me to ever live the life that I had before. I simply can't be that person. That's okay and it is something that I will eventually be able to tackle and face, but for's not where I am at.

I paused my writing of this post to send the emails that I needed to about school to get caught up and to get back on track. I know that I can do this, but I know that I need to give myself more time and be more gentle with me. So, off to study and work on reading this book that I started months ago. (Guess I need to backtrack and read more!) I can't wait to be able to say that I have accomplished the things that I Know that Adeline would have been proud of me for accomplishing.

My dear sweet Adeline, mommy misses you...perhaps misses isn't the right word. Mommy longs for you with each breath that I take. I no longer fear death. I no longer think that I need to see the doctor if something is wrong. I take each day as it comes and really focus on how I can accomplish the tasks at hand while being able to live life to the fullest and celebrate what an amazing little girl you are. I need you here with me and I will never understand why God thought that I was strong enough to handle the loss of you. I am not. I see myself falling in all areas of life. I fail your brothers and sister because I can't be the best mom anymore. I can't be the mom that I was before...I try so hard but am always failing. I fail in school because my focus and discipline are not what they should be. I fail at keeping myself healthy because I don't feel like cooking or have the desire to consider what nutritional needs that I have. Perhaps it is because I long to be back with you, to hold you in my arms again. I know that I am needed on earth. I know that the reason that I did not pass in that fire with you is that I am needed here for your brothers and sister and your dad and so many others....but I don't want to be needed here. I just want for the constant pain and suffering to end. I want them to all be okay. I love them with every bit as much of my soul as I loved you, but I feel like I am not good for them because of how I feel. I am trying so hard. l just feel like I can't do life like I once could and it is so frustrating. It's frustrating to feel so dumb all of the time, to feel as though I can't accomplish the basic tasks in life that were once so very easy. I feel weak and like I am not capable of things that I was once so capable of. I know that I will and have to keep pushing on, but there are moments when I no longer want to....moments where I want to lay in bed holding your bear and want to never get up again. I know that I can't do this. I can't do this to the people that you loved so much, to the family that you cherished with your beautiful heart and soul, but the selfish part of me wants to give up. I will always be broken. These feelings will never go away.

This week I had to face the reality that my beautiful little girl will never again dance in a class at her favorite ballet studio. I had to deal with the fact that she will never go into 4th grade and that she never got to have the chance to have her sister and brother's very favorite teacher, Mr. Lindmark. She was so excited at the prospect of having him as a teacher. I have had to live with the reality that Adeline will never turn "2 numbers" and have the 10th birthday that she was so excited about. I am so broken. I have to live with the fact that 2/3 of a year has been lived without you. I have had to face the reality that this is a nightmare that I will never wake up from for 244 mornings. For 244 mornings I have woken up panicked at the thought of you not being with me...woke up searching for you next to me in bed only to see your urn and know that you are not here. (in the beginning before I had your urn, it was your teddy bear next to me) I know that I need to focus on certain things and that I have not been doing that. I have not been doing the things that make me feel better because in some ways I do not want to feel better.

However, there has been some good happening in my life and I want to acknowledge that here.

Althea and Huxley were able to start a new school and took their first bus rides. They don't like that they have assigned seating everywhere but with COVID raging on, I have attempted to explain that this is for tracing if someone is sick.

Andrew moved into his dorm at UIUC. (This gave me weird emotions. I am so proud of Andrew and all that he has accomplished. In fact, I don't think that proud does justice to how I feel about his accomplishments, yet there is no word to really describe this!)

Our house is slowly coming to order. I wish that it was faster but with extra work shifts and all of the stuff we've been doing, it has been very hard. I am going to devote an hour each day starting today to working on something around the house until it is where it needs to be. Also, I got a beautiful tribute tattoo for my girl. It is her artwork that I found and her writing! I love it so much!!!

I was able to plan some affordable spring break trips for the kids. Andrew and I are likely going to visit a friend in NY and Althea, Huxley and I will be going to visit a friend and her daughter in FL. So, there are things to look forward to as well as next weekend a little getaway that my girls planned for me (sooo excited for this!), seeing Dead & Co. in Chicago with Andrew, taking Althea and Huxley to California for Phish (Huxley will be vaccinated by then and they require a vaccine or negative test), Christmas in Galveston with my family and then going to Austin for New Year's with Shane's family and Phish in Mexico in February. We are going to get through has been a rough year but there have been both good and bad. I will try to post more frequently about grief, life, and will share Adeline's celebration of life and the vacation that we took before that as well. Sorry again to those of you who find that these posts help you that I have been bad about posting. I have been in a very rocky and rough place and took my computer out for the first time since my last post (over a month ago) this morning.

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