Posts Tagged ‘birthdays’

Let’s just begin by saying I’ve been “in my head” almost this whole damn day. I knew it was coming….I thought I was prepared. But…it ended up being a double whammy.

Let me explain……

I’ve already made a social media post about it being National Bereaved Mother’s Day. How odd….really. We get our OWN Day. Not Mother’s Day – even though we ARE STILL MOTHERS! But a whole day. Before Mother’s Day. Like every.other.day of the year is any different. Like we don’t realize we are walking around without our child(ren) here with us. Or that we don’t realize Mother’s Day is coming ….. and again…it’s gonna hurt like hell.

NO – this is actually for a different reason.

Allow me to invite you into some parts of my brain. The crazy inside my head.

You see…today is the 59th birthday of someone who I once loved. Of someone……who is the reason I “celebrate” on days like today.

What an oxymoron. What a double edged sword. What a place where my two worlds collide. You see – as hard as Mother’s Day is for me….there are times….that Father’s Day is even worse. This…because….I chose who was to be their father. I chose the person who would take their young lives. And for this – I’ve owned way more than I should…at times.

But – it started with love. Love of a smile and personality. Young love. Some might say stupid, blind love. Some even say I should wish he were never born!! But how??? Because then…I would have never had my 3 boys! Cody, Cory and Caleb are here…because he was here first. I couldn’t imagine life without them…therefore…I also…cannot…imagine life without him. Without the love we had…at first.

I also own – my part in the deterioration of our marriage. Neither of us were perfect. Although – that is what most saw. The perception – because of the portrayal – was almost perfection. When we split – it was difficult. It was…unheard of. There were only a small number who knew my why. And I chose – to not share with the world. Believe it or not…..I wasn’t out there saying he was bad. We just didn’t fit…any more. Probably – we never did. But God was going to use us – even if – even if we weren’t meant to be together. Our lives were intertwined when I got pregnant with Cody at 16. From there….as I told my Sunday School girls so many times – God rewrote HIS plans…from plan A – to possibly ZZZ by then! He is good like that….and keeps on rewriting…and using my mess ups…for His good.

No – I am struggling today. I chose him. I chose the one. The one…who took them from me. I will own many things – but I will no longer own his final actions. Those – are on him. But I do struggle with the fact I chose him.

I didn’t know what I didn’t know. So many times – now – I want all the answers laid out in front of me before I will leap. But, my friends, that is not how life…or God…work. My faith…has been tested….and strengthened….over and over again.

My choices – led to even more heart-wrenching realizations through the years. From hearing about a pastor I finally – once opened up to – saying “I guess Cheli wasn’t lying all this time after all.” While standing in my parent’s kitchen on THE DAY the boys died!!! To now – still hearing about some thinking how I “Use my boys story for the attention”. Guys – it hurts. It all hurts.

I hurt today for the love lost….the family lost. His family…was mine…..until it wasn’t. I still remember all the birthdates….the memories are still there. I know it will never be the same. But today – I acknowledging….it hurts. It has hurt for a very long time.

I’m not a perfect person. Nobody is. But I’m pretty real. I’ve withdrawn…over and over…just trying to protect my heart. I’ve withdrawn to protect my children, my husband, my family. But sometimes…I just want to be real. It hurts. It stinks. I’ve lost more than just my boys. I lost my house…my safe spaces. I lost friends…and I’ve lost (and grieved) a whole lifetime of memories with people I considered my family.

I sit here – thinking again just how fragile life is. I have a wonderful family…wonderful friends….wonderful life. But – there is sometimes a draw to sit…be real with myself…and know this life never would have existed…..had I not chosen him. Had I not experienced loss…profound loss. I would not be who I am today…without all of it. Every.single.puzzle.piece. Every bit of it is necessary to make me…..me.

and I’m learning to like me. I like the mom of adult children. I like the friend of real people….who accept me as my crazy, freaking-real and always back-and-forth self. I like the life I’ve created with my family. I like the way I live on purpose. I like….no…I love my life. ALL OF IT.

Has it been easy? No. Would I do it again? I’d have to. It’s the only way possible to get to the me I am today. It’s the only way possible to spend time on this earth with all five of my kiddos. It’s the only way to experience them here so I can look forward to eternity with them there.

So – some day – most always – you will see me – and never know some of this…underneath it all…thought process…going on in my head. But today – I wanted to share. I hope you aren’t scared off. I hope you’re not…thinking she should be committed (although there are days……;))

All of this to say. Be yourself. Inside and out. Be real with who you are. Struggles and all. I struggle because I chose him. I struggle because his birthday is hard. I struggle because I miss some of the good times. I struggle because it’s hard to explain. I struggle because I am afraid having these feelings will hurt others I love today. I struggle because I’m always afraid I will never be enough. I struggle because I want to help more than I can. I struggle because I own more than I should. I struggle because I take too much on. I struggle because I love big…but then sometimes I don’t love big enough. I struggle because I don’t like to get it wrong.


I also struggle because I’m so happy now…how can I be sad? I struggle now because I feel so loved and I sometimes don’t always know how to love the right way back. I struggle because life has been so good to me…yet I see others feel like it hasn’t been so good to them. I struggle now because my life seems easy to so many…am I hurting their faith by being too real?

See…depends on which side of the sword you fall. You choose. Remember that. Remember you choose where you land. I allow myself to see my struggles, my pain and my hardships….but I try…to always choose…to land in the land of love…abundance…and faith. God has carried my through so much. He has always had my back. He has stood in the room….with my boys….and carried them home with Him. He has watched me cry and always sent me some kind of sign of love…at JUST THE RIGHT TIME! He as shown my how by sharing…others have come to have hope…and to love Him. I’ve NEVER…been alone.

And…neither are you. Today is somebody’s birthday I once loved. today is a day for Mother’s who’s children no longer are here with them. Today is a day for feelings to be real. Today. Is just another day. and…tomorrow will still come. Which “head-space” will you be in when you wake up? Who will you choose to be today? Tomorrow? I choose to be the one who still loves….who still is real…and feels…ALL THE THINGS!

If you’ve made it this far…thank you. I’m not sure if any of this makes sense….or if I’ve just rambled. Just know…you are loved…and you aren’t alone.

Much love – today and always – ~C

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Man….this week has been such a roller coaster ride for me….and it’s only half way over!

You see…..last night…I got to watch my son walk across the stage and receive his 6th grade promotion…  What a proud momma I am.  He is such a sweet boy with a wonderful heart.   His last day of 6th grade is today!  Onward and upward! Junior High…..here he comes!  Not sure if this momma’s heart is quite ready for all that!

As he walked out the door just a few moments ago to attend his last day of elementary school….. my heart began skipping beats.  For so many reasons.  This is a milestone in his life! But this is also a huge milestone in my life!

You see….today…..also is the birthday of my oldest son, Cody!  My mind races back, 27 years ago today! It was the last day of school that day as well! I was only a junior in high school….but was on my way to the hospital to deliver my precious bundle of joy.  He was stubborn…and needed some coaxing to enter this world….but at 2:55 pm he made his entrance into this world!  Yes, I’ve been a mom for 27 years today….. but after today….it is the first time in my life I can say I am the mom of a 7th grader.

I am an emotional mess.  I can’t even begin to try to explain all of the places my mind is taking me to right now.  The last day of school for my sweet Bryce…… the birthday of my oldest that never lived to see the day his brother is seeing today……the gradutaion ceremony I attended last night……the night of Cody’s 18th birthday…..which was the same night his friends were walking across the stage for their high school graduation and I was sitting beside his grave, in a heap…and just could not bear to leave. I am so proud and sad all at once.  I am filled with joy for the life I am living now with my son here on earth….yet so full of sorrow for all I missed with my sweet angels in heaven!

What a roller coaster ride.  As my friend told me….. “You better buckle up….it’s gonna be a bumpy ride!”  Boy….that’s an understatement!

What I love most….are the memories of both of my boy’s hearts.  Last night, before the graduation….I called Bryce in.  He knew I was gonna cry.  He almost expected it! 🙂    I asked him to sit with me…..and as he did…..all I could do was look into his beautiful eyes.  I couldn’t speak.  Tears just started streaming down my face.  He just looked at me and kind of grinned.  He didn’t get fidgety or upset….he just sat with me.  I told him how much I loved him and how he was growing to be such a fine young man.  He just looked at me and then he took his hand and caressed my cheek and said, “Mom….I love you.  But most of all, I’m proud to be your son.” Well, needless to say that just turned on the water works even more.  He handed me a kleenex. I told him thanks but it was I who was proud.  I told him I thanked God for letting me be his mom.  I thanked him for sending me my rainbow.  I reminded him again what that meant to me, what he meant to me.  He just kept smiling and caressing my face.  He reached over and kissed me and gave me a hug and that was it.  We were off to his graduation and a night of celebrating!

I don’t remember specifically having this same conversation with Cody.  I remember how protective Cody was of me.  I remember how much we just talked and shared with each other.  I remember thinking I could never love another child the same as I did him…until his siblings came along! I remember him telling me his heart hurt and wanting to protect him from it.  I remember his smile…….always brightening my heart every time he flashed it at me!  I remember so much……but it is not enough for me.  Because it was cut short…….I remember not thinking I could go on…..but then I did.

As I sit here…..with tears filling my eyes……and falling down my face…….  I love remembering.  I love that as new memories are made….the old ones can bring me to tears and fill my heart with joy all over again.  I love that as I go through this uncharted territory with my son now…..that the excitement is just as if it would have been with my other children but I know that they are going through it with me in spirit!

I love that I can sit here and close my eyes……and as I do my heart can place my two sons…..Cody and Bryce…..in front of me.  I can imagine both of them sitting in front of me….smiling….back and forth at each other and then back at me….and telling me how much they love me…..and know that I love them back!  I can imagine them, with outstretched hands, caressing each side of my face…..I can almost feel their touch now.  I can hear their words, their excitement, in where my life is now.

All I can ask for as a mom, is to know that my children love me…..know that I love them…..and that they love our God.  I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that when I close my eyes and feel both of them touching my face and telling me they love me, that those words are true and their touch is real.

So, today I choose to celebrate two of my sons.  Cody, I thank you for making me a mom.  For 27 years I have been your mom and it has been an honor.  I wish I could hug you and have seen you grow into a man…..but I know in my heart that my hugs are felt by you even now.  I can still see your smile….and I thank you, that when I close my eyes, you are there. You will always….ALWAYS….have a very special place in my heart that can never ever be taken from you. I can’t wait to see you again…..and get all the smiles and hugs from you for eternity!  That is what keeps me going!

And to my sweet son Bryce…..thank you for coming into my life.  Like a rainbow you’ve shown me God’s promises and goodness and faithfulness.  By watching you…..I’m so often reminded how life can go on and be so good….even after so many storms!  Your smile and hugs make life so worth sticking around!  We are both in uncharted territory……junior high!  But I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I am to steer through this with you!  You brighten my days and give my heart such hope!  The spot in my heart you hold is filled with such joy and color just because of you!  Thank you for letting me be your mom!

Last but certainly not least….I want to thank you God.  You have given me five beautiful children to love on this earth.  My two boys, Cody and Bryce, have each taught me so much about life and love.  I thank you for choosing me to be their mom. Although I don’t understand all of Your ways, I trust that they are perfect.  I know that while some of my kiddos are with you now, my two that are still here with me, are still really yours.  I just ask that you continue to strengthen me.  But today…..I just want to crawl in your lap and say thank you.  Thanks for understanding my roller coaster of emotions.  Thanks for loving me through all of these joys and sorrows.  Thanks for continuing to bless me.  Mostly today….thanks for these two wonderful sons!

Onward…..and upward!   ~c




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