Saturday, October 30, 2010

Stuck in the "in-between"

Lately I have felt like I know I need to move forward and start to re-create my life and who I am now, but haven't been able to. Most weeks go by and I feel like I've gotten Talyn to school and sports, gotten to work and done the other things I do, but we're not really moving ahead. Because I know that's the next step and I am a planner, it's frustrating that I can't seem to get going already. The best way I can describe it is that I feel like I'm stuck in sludge. My feet are moving, but I am not.

It wasn't until I watched last week's "brothers and sisters" - an excellent show, that I realized why. Calista Flockhart's character has crazy similarities to my life. She battled cancer, has a son and now has lost her husband. In last week's show she met someone and was having a hard time moving forward (that part I don't have a similarity too though). Her mother sat her down and said that she wasn't yet ready to let go of the life she was supposed to have. The life she planned with her husband and child, the dreams they had together and the life they wanted. Until she was ready to say goodbye to this life that wasn't going to be a reality anymore, she couldn't possibly move forward with creating a new one.

That was a huge AHA moment as Oprah would say. I am not ready to say goodbye to the life Ryan and I had planned, the dreams we shared and the things we wanted to do together, so how could I possibly start thinking about what was next? This has actually made me feel comfortable with the in-between that I am in and given me some peace to just "be".

I know that whatever comes next, whenever that is, will be great. But for now, I am still happy just knowing that I am doing the best I can for Talyn and I. Even if it is the "in-between".

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A Rough Patch

Life over the past month has been a blur. It's been nice to get back into a routine. School and sports for Talyn and work and Rethink volunteering for me. But now it's the middle of October and I wonder how 6 months could have passed since Ryan was here. It’s hard to describe where we are, but I think we’ve been through the shock, the sad, some mad and now as life starts to melt into what some may call "normal", most days it seems fairly overwhelming.

Because we are typically so busy, I don't let myself stop to feel much of anything. But then sometimes life just makes you stop - doesn't it? It started with Talyn having to go to the Children’s Hospital on Friday night at our family doc’s request for some ongoing stomach pains with no related symptoms. Talyn is fine physically now but it really stirred up some things in us both. The following day he was so hard to handle that I felt like walking out. Now I wouldn't have actually ever done that, but I just felt like I needed a break so bad and knowing I wasn't getting one made it even worse.

Sunday morning I woke up and started to feel those familiar feelings of anxiety. Doubting whether I could actually do this single parenting gig. I called my parents and although I tried to put on a brave front, parents always know. 8 hours later, they were at my doorstep - to the rescue. That night my mom was giving Talyn a bath and asked him what was on his arm. He told her the marks were from the IV they put in his arm at the hospital. She told him that must have been scary and he said "did you know my dad had an IV? and then he died".

How could I have not figured that out? When my mom told me what Talyn had said, it was so clear - of course that would have triggered some awful things in him. But at the time, I was so burnt out, that I didn't see it. My parents stayed for a couple of days and that gave me some time to not be the primary caregiver and allowed me to recharge a bit.

Underneath alll of the sadness that is still a big part of me and the tiredness that I feel all of the time from all of the things I am now the only person to do, I know there are questions. Before Ryan, I was fairly clear on who I was. With Ryan, I was fairly clear on who we were. But now, who am I? BIG questions are buried underneath me right now and most days I don't have the energy to go through the process to figure it out.

But what always seems to get me through in a moment of real struggle, is a sign always appears. Somethier small or something fairly significant, but whatever it is, it leads me down a path. Ryan was always there for me to talk to about work, Talyn, friends, family, all of the things that fill your head. But now those thoughts just feel stuck in my head, going around and around.

Just last week I was feeling very overwhelmed with a parenting decision and I actually said out loud "ryan if you are listening and you can, please give me some kind of sign to help me decide what to do". Later that day, one of the options that I was considering gave me that sign. The person I needed to talk to, if I wanted to go ahead was named Ryan.

Thanksgiving came at a really good time to bring me some more perspective on what life is really about. Yes we've had a rough year and yes we wish more than anything we could bring Ryan back to help fill the loneliness. But the rest of our life is pretty great. There are so many people that live much different lives, who struggle every day in so many ways. Thanks so much to everyone who makes our lives so much better than they could be! For all of you....we give thanks.