It's that wonderful time of year when the Lazarus Experiment happens again and this year has found me in a whole different place... I'm not sure if emotionally I'm ready for it this year. I think I am. But I also know that in the last year so many things have changed.
The "spat" I had with my bestie last year really changed me completely. It gave me an opportunity to see what was really important in my life and what was bogging me down. When a relationship reaches it's end, do you always know? When it seems to have run it's course, do you know?
I'm not sure we always do until we begin to feel the weight of it in ways that affect other areas of our lives. It's a shame we don't. We could save ourselves heart ache, sickness in some cases, and a lot of sleepless nights wondering. It would be awesome if somewhere, someone were to put a little whisper in our ear that says, "Um, just so you know, this has run it's course and it's time for you to move on. There's someone else out there who is better suited to you and who you are, where you are, what you want out of life. Say your goodbyes and gently bow out while you can before it gets snotty nosed crocodile tear-ed ugly. K? K."
And sometimes we get those whispers but because we are wrapped up in that relationship, we don't always hear them well. And sometimes - and this is the kicker - we hear it but we don't pay attention because that relationship is familiar and comfortable and letting it go means stepping out into your "un-comfortable zone" and allowing yourself to be vulnerable again. Lord have mercy that's so hard.
At any rate, as life would have it last year saw the 75% demise of one relationship, the building of another and death and birth..... Life last year was hard, bittersweet, lovely, beautiful and ugly. Never easy. No... never easy.....
Just a quick recap - Taylor and his girl of two years broke up for the third and final time. A dear friend began chemo and radiation treatments for throat cancer. I got my second "dear John" letter from my bestie and, after having accepted her apology and renewing our relationship, seven years later we were in the same place as before..... Mistreat me once - shame on you. Mistreat me twice, shame on me. So yeah - shame on me. My birthday in May was uneventful... kind of lonely.... kind of sad.... kind of fun. I went to hear Dalton play in the All County Elementary strings concert and also the Spring All County Elementary Choral Concert. He is so very talented. I was oh so proud!!
My relationship with another dear friend was growing stronger and stronger and I recognized suddenly how similar we both are. We began spending a lot of time with each other and developing a bond that was very sister like and fulfilling. In a way I had not felt in very many people. I can count on one hand the number of people with whom I've felt that bond. Kevin certainly was at the top of the list.
June saw the end of 5th grade, vacation at Lake Anna with such fun and wonderful friends, the death of my dear uncle Hill and my dad's move from his home of 25 years to a retirement community. BUSY!
July saw a tornado, my son and his pregnant (YEAH!) wife moving back into my home, a lot of time (95% of the month) at my dad's house helping manage his bills, taking care of his move and his needs and "living" with my sister at Dad's house in Richmond.
August came and with it came more busy time with Daddy, trying to help reorganize space in the house, and more time with Daddy. Two days into a weekend home I got a call saying he had fallen and sustained a fairly nasty head injury. With someone in his 80's, which Parkinson's Plus (Parkinson's with a mild dementia component) this had potential to be catastrophic.
September came and school was right around the corner. We got home from Richmond the day before school started. There was much to do and Daddy wasn't doing well but Dalton's success in school (he was entering Middle School - oh my stars where does time go???) was paramount. Daddy didn't fare this well at all and he passed away on September 8th. We (my sister, our "brother" Gray and I) were with him as he took his last breath and joined Momma. It was a blessing to be there with him and, God love him, he did it "his way" the whole way.
The week following Daddy's passing was a whirlwind of activity and trauma and sadness and business (and busy-ness) and joy and laughter and tears and gatherings. It was good and bad and everything in between. Emotionally, we were not sure whether to be relieved or sad. Ultimately I still have some residual anger because technically, daddy should still be with us. If the doctor had listened to me, he would never have fallen. If the doctor hadn't dismissed my concerns we would still have my daddy. But the doctor is the doctor and daddy is daddy and it is too late for me to be "beating a dead horse" because it isn't going to change a darn thing. I have to learn to let go of my anger and my frustration and simply revel in the glory Daddy knows as a norm now. Because that's exactly what he gained that day - Glory!
October brought an increase in Dalton's illnesses once again. Trips to MCV, to CHKD, to so many doctors and specialists. No answers just tests, tests and more sickness.
November brought the arrival of my sweet grandson. He is gloriously precious and beautiful and adorable and oh so much goodness and joy! He looks just like his daddy and is just so incredibly special.
December was lean but good and fun buying little baby gifts this time around. Little tiny clothes and little tiny diapers oh my goodness! The tensions in the house began to climb a little and frustrations began to grow. How could they not? So many people under one roof. So many "cooks in the kitchen". It really is a recipe for disaster.
Suffice it to say, the stew began to boil over, the lid blew off the pot, the you-know-what hit the fan and before I knew it there was a lot of unrest in the house.
All that is settled now and rebuilding is occurring. It's nice. Guarded but nice.
March was tough. I still cannot seem to get passed Mom's passing. Every single February finds me emotionally charged. When March 3rd arrives I generally am able to suddenly let go! Well now that Kev's passing is so close to mom's, it just doesn't let go like it used to. March 3rd, we had dinner in honor of momma. March 17th, we had the family in for dinner to honor Kevin. It was way too cold to let off balloons so we'll do that again later on - on a date important to the two of us. And, magically, our emotions deflated and lost their edge on the morning of the 18th.
March also saw us at CHKD once again to try and find out why little boy cannot stop throwing up. I had had enough and drove him to the CHKD ER for an "in" into their Gastro department. We scored an appointment two days later! Within moments of the doctor's arrival in the room, Dalton looked at her and in response to her "What brings you here today Dalton?" he replies, "Well, I'm sick of being bullied and beaten up."
What??? Beaten up? WHAT?
The doctor said that IBS is a stress related problem and with the throwing up and the clear tests for Celiac's Disease, she was kind of at a loss so she was asking Dalton for his help in figuring it all out. He said there was one boy who was pretty big who was hitting him in his head multiple times a day. There was another boy who kept hitting him in his "boy" parts. There was another calling him "A long haired - yellow toothed freak" another girl who didn't even know him who would tell him "I think my world would be a better place if you just didn't exist." And yet another who told him several times, "I know why your dad died. He did so he didn't have to grow old with a disappointment like you for a son." My son was emotionally and physically and psychologically so damaged, vomiting was all he could manage.
I immediately took him out of school and have been having him home bound educated while the school system determines whether to grant us a transfer to a different middle school. So far, so good but he's so far behind, I'm concerned he may not be able to catch up.
Then there's the whole surgery he will have to undergo to correct the "hitting me in the boy parts" problem. Yeah - it's that bad..........
So, moving on. I've been participating in a monthly Vendor Fair where I have been selling my jewelry and having such fun meeting people and making new contacts. I'll be doing this once a month through October and hope to get my store up and running soon. So much inspiration this time of year so I hope to get a lot of new things made too.
March also saw my dear new sister having to go away for a while. She will be away for anywhere from one to three years depending on how much of the program she is able to complete in as much time. We will have written communication and some (infrequent) phone conversation but no face to face contact. Dalton and I are both struggling to deal with this but we knew this day was coming. It will okay and I know it's all going to be for the better but in the meantime, I feel like my sister, whom I had only recently found again, was taken from me and that's hard to reconcile for myself, much less little boy.
Easter was beautiful I was sick and didn't make it to church but was able to attend services on television which, while it's not my favorite way to celebrate His Rising, it had to do! It was lovely having some quiet time with Dalton that day too where we weren't rushed to accomplish everything. We had a nice leisurely day of thankgiving.
It's now time for The Lazarus Experiment and I'm looking forward to the renewal. 40 days of living like Lazarus would having been raised from the dead. 40 days of renewal, of new life. I'm excited and hope I'm able to give it the attention it deserves this year. Attention I deserve this year. I need this renewal to be able to some of my pieces together and move forward.
I leave you all with my prayer for His love to comfort and strengthen you. To replenish you as He is replenishing the earth and renewing life and lives. I leave you with my prayer for all good things to surround you, riches to befall you (not to be mistaken with financial wealth because honestly which one is better?), for you to have good health physically, emotionally and spiritually. To always look up and never down.
God's love and peace!