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How Can This Be?

I can't believe that it has been so long since I have held you in my arms my precious sweet girl. I can't believe that we are ending another school year without you here to celebrate. Soon we will embark on our second summer without you and I feel as though I am dying inside trying to plan fun adventures with my family that doesn't feel like it's my family. Things just don't feel complete without my little girl.





As we have started our summer off, I am reminded of the many summer memories that we had when A was here with us. I am reminded of the mom that I was before the fire, the one who always had fun things to do with the kids and who never stopped going and planning together. I have struggled with what to plan, with how to still be a good mom while I am feeling so many things. I know that I would be just as sad and lonely with any of the kids gone but I just don't know how to keep going and to keep being a mom like I was. Can I ever be as good of a mom again? Am I still a good mom?





A week and a half ago Althea had her dance recital and once again she danced beautifully. There were moments when I felt my soul hurting for the loss of not seeing my littlest love dance, but then I felt so much happiness and joy watching Althea dance. It was such a tangled and twisted web.



(& here is one from a dance recital past....2014!)


Yesterday we had a Sunday fun day. It was a nice day with a drive to the Quad cities for some tables for our basement seating area. Then we took off to Trader Joes and got lots of goodies there and at Costco as we need to eat this summer. We also got to eat a meal out together, picked up some delicious Hurts donuts, and had nitrogen ice cream for dinner. It was a really great day with the family, but I couldn't shake the feeling that I was forgetting something. I now know that this feeling and the intense anxiety that comes along with it are from having my little girl be gone.





On Saturday we went to the Encore dance recital in Canton. It was nice to see the recital together and to support Adeline's best friend Leah and two of Althea's best friends, Whitney and Ainslee. It was nice to get to see the recital since the last one was the last one that the girls performed in. They had been in other performances pre-COVID doing the Nutcracker and since Althea has been in more as well. However, there will never be another recital with Adeline and that reality felt really heavy.





I continue to struggle and really am having a very hard time, but I also continue to have moments where I am able to enjoy life with my family. I love that I have three amazing children to focus on but I fear for the day that they don't want my focus upon them. I fear for the day when they are not here and when I have to start working on things on my own. I only have 2,185 days left before they are all grown up and graduated from high school. I often wonder what I will be doing then.





I applied for a full time teaching job at the local high school. I have liked working there and don't foresee being in the district to be too difficult until Adeline's class joins the high school in 4 years. I hope that I am better equipped with handling my emotions by then and that I am set in my healthy routines that make things better for me. This week, I have my focusses set on getting things organized, cleaned, picked up and really focussing on having a nice home. Next week I will start my clothes organization which has been a very long time coming and is something that I have to do. Then I am going to get started with my health and wellness routine, including in person yoga classes which I bought a 10 class pass for recently.



(2018...dance recitals were always so special!)


I am also working on trying to change the way that I eat so that I feel healthier and better. I have gotten in a bad habit of being so lazy with food and not actually cooking and preparing meals like I should. I miss the days where I used to enjoy cooking and making things for my family. Those days have been long gone and I feel the depravity of not having them. I just hurt so much and feel so much pain.


(2019 will forever be the last year of recitals and dance performances for my sweet baby girl!)


I am hoping that we get to take our camper out soon for our first camping trip. I am not looking for anything elaborate, just some time spent together camping and enjoying life. We seem to always be busy even if we are not busy...I don't even know how that makes sense but the emotional exhaustion of losing a child plays into that. I believe that it is this emotional exhaustion that makes even fun days seem harder to push through. I know that I have got to get better for my other three kiddos and my husband and I am trying so hard.


One good thing about summer is having Andrew home with us. I have to admit that having the three kids in the house feels really good. I would never want them to be here past the time that they need to be here though. I want to see them be successful and have their goals and dreams met without worrying about me or how their dreams will affect me. I talk to Andrew about these things.


To be honest, I think that once the kids are gone that I will be at least partially nomadic. I don't think that I can keep myself in one place or doing one thing for too long. I don't think that it will be mentally healthy for me to stay in one place for too long. I think that the constant change and moving around (which I can do with my job as a teacher/college instructor) will be good for my soul as monotony seems to the times when I am hurting and mentally at my worst.

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