Tuesday, October 9, 2012

I think I've seen this bench before...

Have you ever been lost? Not just a little lost, but the kind of lost where you are certain you're headed the right direction and then things start to look familiar again. The sudden realization that you just went full circle and you're right back where you started starts to sink in. Well, this is me. If life could be drawn out on a map of where we go and where we've been I'd be finding a seat right where I sat three years ago. The realization that I've been here weighing heavy on my heart.
I can't believe it's been almost three years since I wrote. Sometimes time just slips between our fingers and we don't even realize it. I re-read my last entry tonight (after 20 minutes of trying to figure out my password and username only to have to reset it all). I felt like I could copy and paste it in a new entry and it would come close to all being relevant. This, is not a comfortable feeling. A little over three years ago I ended a marriage that probably, in my opinion, should never have started. I was eager to move forward and find what I felt I had been missing out on and struggling with the challenges of being a single mother and wanting companionship. Oh, if I could go back to that version of me three years ago. The things I would tell her. Older and wiser we go, as the time ticks away at our lives. Each tick of the clock bringing more wisdom at the price of experience. I am now separated from my second husband and we have been so since January. Just less than a year after marrying we separated for the last time. There are so many things that I learned in that short year. Things like, it is really hard to be a step parent, honesty really is the most important asset you can bring to a relationship, and that we all have our breaking point for sanity. I guess mine was reached at 7 children and at least 5 mental and emotional challenges under one roof, a lack of income, an abundance of outgo, and dishonesty plaguing a marriage that happened all too fast. I must say in all fairness, that it wasn't all bad. I hope one day to feel what I felt at one time as I did with this man. He was kind, and thoughtful sometimes to a fault. He was a good man, with a trunk full of baggage and four children filling the seats (some of which were very challenging) of the "car" he offered. It was all too much for one person, and the hardest part for me was that my children were struggling too. I don't see any other way this could have ended. Now, on to find the courage to finish things with a divorce. Even just the word divorce is hard to vocalize at times. It's such a thing of negativity. The finality of it so heavy. Maybe I'm just overly emotional, but for me, it's a very hard decision. It makes it even harder when you have someone you care about begging you not to go through with it. I do care about him, and this makes it so much more challenging, but I have to care about me and my kids first. This will be a really hard journey because of my feelings, but I have to find my inner strength and do what is best for us. Wish me luck!!
For a first post back... this is a rambling mess!! Hope it gets better! :)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Where I've been... and where I hope to go!

In the last 6 months since my divorce I have not only hit many stages in emotions, but have been able to see others in there similar stages as well. I can look at a friend that is still going through a divorce and see myself in so many ways just not that long ago. It ceases to amaze me the difference just a couple months can make, and yet those months in my own life seem like an eternity.
As usual... now I explain. About 7 months ago when I was trying to finalize my divorce I was in such a state of confusion. I knew that finishing the divorce was what I needed to do, but I couldn't help but cry, ponder, and even lose sleep over the ramifications. I have three children who love their dad dearly! I made promises when I got married that I didn't want to break and wanted to be sure that I was doing this all for the right reasons. I had to come to a realization that no amount of love, or hope, or even faith can change someone else. I finally reached a point where I began to move forward, where I knew what needed to be done for the benefit of myself and my children.
This was a stage of determination. I knew that I had done what I could to try to work on a struggling marriage and that I had given it ALL I had. I knew that God loved me and wanted me to be happy. I knew that somehow things were going to be alright. I was "certain" of myself and my actions. I remember having a discussion with a couple members of my church shortly after moving into my home and even being a little shocked at how "certain" of myself I was. "Things are going to work out." I said. I was ready for a change and for a new life. I hadn't, however, planned on it not being instant and that there would be such emotional roller coasters in the meantime.
Next, was the stage of trying to replace. After the divorce was final I signed onto dating online. I had hoped to turn my attention away from being alone and to find that there were really good guys out there, inspiring a little hope in myself. Not my best suggestion for others. It may work for some but it was not for me. I dated a little this way, but the results were always the same. Things didn't work out, and in most cases people could just lie about who or what they were. There was one instant where I began talking with a guy and the chemistry seemed great. I found him funny and interesting. After a couple days of this talking back and forth via computer and text I was out one night without the kids and he asked if we could meet up. Once we met up, I realized I was in a sticky situation. He had little or no sense of humor in person, he looked little like his pictures, there was NO chemistry, and he suddenly talked alot about his "questionable past". I managed to escape with as little as just a dessert, where I paid for my own, and about a 20min conversation before I had a friend call me away. Poor guy. After a bad relationship or two I realized that this was not the way to find hope.
So, next was the stage of depression and lonliness.... still working my way out of this one. I started to realize day by day that there very well may be a long period of struggles before things are "worked out". I read once that the average amount of time a woman is single after a divorce is about 3.5 years! I think I cried when I read this. I get so overwhelmed everyday trying to fill both the father and mother role without relief that the idea of that much longer, on an average, was a little daunting. There became more and more times where I ended the day with tears on my pillow. More and more times when I've wondered if I really will make it through another day like the one before. More and more times when I look at the things I truely want in life and see just how far away they really are. I try to find happiness in the little moments and embrace all the good around me. I truely am blessed. I have good friends, good family, and awesome kids! But sometimes its just not enough... sometimes the day still ends alone and the next begins just as alone. There is a song that states that one is the lonliest number, but I have to disagree. I was never in a state of lonliness as a single person as I have been as a single parent. I can honestly attest to the plan of my Heavenly Father in the Family unit. There is meant to be a father and a mother to rear and guide and discipline children. It wasn't designed for one person to carry the load alone. I also know that the time will come one day when I will truely be able to bask in the richness of a wonderful relationship, and that if I continue to try my best I will be blessed and so will my children. I have to have faith that no matter how long this "tunnel" is there is definately light at the end of it.
In closing, I hope that my next stage is contentment in SOLITUDE. I read a quote last night that said, "You cannot become or remain creative without solitude." I want to be happy alone and then be able to share that happiness with someone else, when the time comes. There are so many things about myself that I would like to explore and better. There are things that I can try to work on now so that I don't carry more baggage than necessary into a future relationship. For example, I know that I'm a needy person. I find my self-worth in the praises and affirmations of others. This isn't the way I want to be. I don't want to think I'm wonderful, or beautiful, or anything else, just because someone else says so. I want to believe those things whole heartedly on my own. I want to continue to love others but to be able to love myself just as much! I have signed up for some counseling to assist me in all of this and am excited to learn tools and guides to help me do this. I know I can get there especially with faith, and the knowledge that my desires and persuits will better myself and my family. Its up to me to find the light at the end of my tunnel and I intend to do just that.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A day like today...

I don't know what it is about scrubbing your childs poop off the carpet that causes an emotional breakdown, but it never fails, tears usually accompany the process. Maybe its the feeling that this is what your life has come to, or to know that its very possibly normal for a potty training child and nonetheless disgusting, or maybe its because women who work in high heels and drive shiny cars and make lots of money NEVER have to clean up poop!!

Alright, alright, so maybe the grass only looks greener on the other side. Maybe I'm only seeing the glass half empty, but after a day like today, I'm not sure someone didn't come along and drink my other half.

Today was my first day home from spending a week and a half at my parents house surrounded by friends and family. Let me give you an example of what it kind of felt like. You know when you have a small child that plays so well alone, maybe you've worked really hard to get to this point, but he/she is finally playing with the toys you laid out and not screaming at you constantly. Well, then you spend the holidays with family and everyone holds him/her and by the time you get home you can't get anything done! Well, that little whiner is me today.

The realization of how lonely I am here set in pretty good today. No little cousins occupied my kids, no parents or siblings asked me if I wanted to play games or take a nap or just talk. Instead, I let the kids tear the house apart for the first part of the day while I used a gift card to download music, then I spent the second half of the day frustrated with my messy kids and messy house. My poor children!
I was trying to make dinner this evening with 4 kids whining and crying at me. Then, one of my boys dropped a toy on my foot while standing underfoot and crying, and the knot and bruise is there to remind me of what a wonderful day it wasn't. I almost burned dinner, while cleaning up a box of blocks for the 17th time. Then I smelled something awful. My youngest has been struggling with loose bowells and his poor bum was looking a litte raw. He's just turned 2 and I thought I'd let him run around bare bummed for a little bit and work on the potty training I've been avoiding... oops! Loose bowells and naked bums do not go well together, just for the record!!!! And to top it all off bedtime routine was shot due to the invasion of vacation rules.
I'll be sure to pray for more patience, energy, kindness and less chaos, fighting, and aggravation for tomorrow!!!

P.S. New years Eve is day after tomorrow... my excess of children and lack of social plans is a bit disheartening. ugh!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas plans

A while back I came to the realization that I'm gonna have to lose the kids for some of the holidays. Coming from a VERY family oriented background you can only pretend to imagine my devastation on this topic. I cried, no sobbed for over an hour at the very thought of waking up Christmas morning and being alone, or being with extended family and watching them enjoy their children and me not having mine. I'm sure that my over-active imagination played up the scenario a bit but nonetheless it was a tramatic realization. So, after coming to grips with what was going to inevitably happen, I came up with the plan that if my ex husband and I could just get along and play nice for the last few holidays of the year, I wouldn't have to lose the kids for a christmas for two years. So we tried... and we failed. We made it through Halloween, and by the time Thanksgiving was over we both were "locked and loaded" per say.

Christmas next year will be so hard on me... but at least I have a year to prepare myself.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Just some thoughts...

I'm sitting down and writing tonight without a specific topic in mind. I have a mind full of thoughts and I guess I'm hoping to give the wheels in there a little relief. Today was sunday and for anyone who has taken three small children to church knows what I mean when I say "I survived"! They are actually getting better, though. They still need more work on using their quiet voices, but I'll keep working on it. It felt so nice to be there. We've had almost a whole month off. We spent the last two sundays traveling back from Idaho Falls, and the sunday prior to that was stake conference... only we didn't know about it, so we showed up to an empty parking lot. I love that all the kids go to classes now too. It makes it that much easier to try to converse with adults, and to try to feel the spirit. Gabe will be in primary in January, I can't believe he's that big. People always tell you they grow up sooo fast. I think, when you're cleaning up the entire bottle of chicken seasoning from off the living room rug, or you have a little boy screaming from the bathroom for you to wipe him, or every 3 seconds someone is telling you they got hit... it doesn't seem fast enough, but then one day you have kids big enough to make you promises, offer to help vacuum, and play games with you. It really does happen so fast.

On another note, I have been really struggling with a new battle in my life that I know I have to fight and conquer. I hate being alone (kids not counted). I miss begininng and ending the day with someone I love. I know it will happen again, but for now, its difficult for me to reflect inward as I need to. I have so much I need to work on as a person. This is such a great opportunity to do it. I just hope I'm up to the challenge. Sometimes it can seem like the task is too daunting. I'd much rather give that attention to someone else. hee hee. I'm gonna make some goals and hopefully by writing them down I can hold myself to them.

GOAL #1 I want to enroll in school by next summer. (I'd do it sooner, but I have to make sure I have some tax stuff is in order so I can get grants)

GOAL #2 I want to learn to budget my money better.

GOAL #3 I want to find a couple hobbies that entertain my time outside of the kids.

GOAL #4 I want to get my kids medical and dental things taken care of. That means all caught up on shots, teeth checks, all of it.

GOAL #5 I want to love myself like I love others!!!

GOAL #6 I want to be able to attend the temple monthly at least, again.

I guess thats a good place to start. I'm sure there are more, but at least that gives me some things to shoot for. Now, onward and upward!!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Wall-e the Hamster

About a year ago we bought this cute little dwarf hamster. We brought it home and settled it into it's little cage. Two weeks later the hamster we thought was a boy had 5 babies! I googled how to take care of them and eventually became more endeared to the babies then I was to the mother whom we'd just begun to tame. I kept the two boy hamsters and sold or gave away the other 4 (the mother included). The one was named Wall-e and the other Hercules. (Thank heavens for Disney movies or our pets would lack good names.) Hercules had a mishap and returned to Hamster heaven a few months ago but Wall-e is still with us.

With that background painted allow me to proceed with my topic. I sat here this evening looking at my house that looks like the remains of tornado wreckage and began to wonder when things would be less complicated. This led me to wonder if its the circumstances that lead me to survive rather than to thrive, or if its just me. I looked up at my little hamster in his cage and came to a conclusion. I have been meaning to replace the shavings in his cage for a week now and somehow it falls between the cracks. Once, I even got up there to take down his cage and clean it and I realized he had a ton of his food stashed under those shavings. I quickly allowed myself to slide out of the responsibility and excused it by claiming the best interest of the hamster and his winter supply. So tonight as I started to shut down everything for the night and said goodnight to my little hamster, I realized that maybe things arent' perfect right now but there's alot of love in this house. Maybe Wall-e doesn't live in a fresh shavings environment but he is one loved hamster. I sneak him fruit and cheese and veggies whenever I can and he's not as dwarf-like as I'm betting all his sisters are (where ever they may be).

I think, no better yet, I hope and pray that it is enough for my children, as well, to be in such a place. Maybe this house is rarely clean, and maybe we have chocolate chip pancakes for dinner occasionally, and maybe we watch more movies than we should some days; but hopefully when I tuck them into bed individually each night, and say prayers individually with them each night, and hug and kiss them as much as I can all day and again at night, and hold them when they are sick or scared, and keep them safe from the things of the world, then hopefully, I have done enough. Hopefully LOVE will help us travel across that bridge from the land of surviving to a land of thriving.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

To Be Single Again...

There is a very big difference between dating when you're young and single and dating when you're older and have kids! I had an experience recently that made this point quite clearly. Allow me to paint a picture. I had my ex husband coming into town to spend the day with the kids and I knew I'd be able to go out on my own. This doesn't happen very often so I took the opportunity to get all dolled up. Despite the recent addition to my hips and thighs I was feeling pretty good. I had put on a nice shirt that was actually feminine and wasn't covered in yesterdays handprints, and a pair of jeans that, though tighter than they used to be, made me feel maybe even a little sexy. I wore black heels and put some curls in my long hair.
As I was out on my adventure for the day I stopped by my cousins work. She works for a clothing store and they always have the cutest fashions there. I usually feel a little out of place in my preferred jeans and tshirt style, but on this day I had a little swing in my hips again as I walked. Upon leaving the store, I could've sworn a few heads even turned in my direction. Man, I was feeling hot. I crossed the parking lot and traffic was even stopping for me (okay, so maybe it wasn't that dramatic, but you get the idea). I strode up to my sleek silver minivan, and climbed in the seat. I sat there for a moment wondering what that bizarre smell was coming from the back and made a mental note to clean out the car and headed out of the lot.
Now, I was never a beauty queen, and I think I've embraced my feminity much more these days than I used to, but really??? I recommend doing things right the first time. And if for some reason someone were to end up in my shoes... enjoy every step. Its not every day you get to laugh at your own story.