A Rock in Your Shoe

I’m sure over the next few weeks you (whoever is reading this) will get tired of my talking about Charlie and the way I feel now and the way I felt when he was born and when he died.

It seems that the one year mark was by far the toughest. But this 5 year mark is in second place for the most painful. I have found myself talking about Charlie a LOT over the last couple of weeks. Mostly to people who might not know anything about him or our situation. I find myself “sharing” him with others now. Previously I wanted to keep him all to myself.

A little while after he died, a girl I volunteered with at the Ronald McDonald House shared her idea with me about the grieving process. She lost her 5 year old to Cancer a few years earlier so she had experience.

She said grieving was much like having a rock in your shoe.

And you can’t get it out. Can’t take the shoe off and shake it. It is there and always will be.

At first it cuts into your heel and ball of your foot causing you to bleed and be in pain. Then after a little while, you can wiggle it around and get it into a spot where you can’t feel it too much. But every now and then something will happen and make that rock get under the heel of your foot – causing you to bleed and be in pain. So you go through life with this rock in your shoe that sometimes causes you a lot of pain and sometimes is just “there”.

I thought that was very interesting at the time. And now I know that it is very true.

I attended a visitation for a friend’s stepdad tonight at the funeral home where Charlie was. I remember our visitation almost too vividly. I remember greeting hundreds of people (seriously, like 300) from locally and from places several hours away. It was very humbling. I have been in that room for various visitations over the last 5 years with very little pain. But tonight for some reason when I walked in the room, I felt physically ill. Like I might throw up. I remember feeling that way the first time I went in the church where we had his service (my home church…not the one we are members of) and that morning they just happened to have a baptism and sang “Jesus Loves Me”. Again, I felt physically ill.

You never know what is going to trigger one of those “Moments” and the moment might not make you cry and get all emotional or anything, but it puts a knot in your stomach and makes your hands shake and just makes you feel that rock in your shoe. But I’ll be able to wiggle it back out of the way and go for a little while until it decides to get under my heel again.

Man, is it wild at my house?

Boy, howdy! I tell you what…it is CRAZY at my house.

Jason and I were at a conference from the 15th until the 21st. My sister kept Henry. She has a 10 year old and a 2 1/2 year old. So her house was full of life, too. We picked up Henry and Spencer (her 2 1/2 year old) on Wednesday and it’s been non-stop ever since. I think having been together for 10 days, they are pretty much sick of each other.

They love to play, but aren’t real good at sharing yet (Henry should be, but he’s over it) and they both want constant attention. Spencer likes to sleep late, Henry is a morning-glory :) They are so tired they can hardly see straight.

When Henry is playing with something, say, a rocket…and Spencer wants it, Henry’s response is “I’m ALMOST done”. So then when Spencer gets the rocket and Henry wants it, Spencer has picked up the beautiful saying “I’m ALMOST done”. I’m sure Lauren will be thrilled. But I guess it’s better than him coming home cussing or something!

It’s pretty cute. They both know how to play me for a fool. And I fall for it every time. Spencer is into terrorizing the cats. Henry hasn’t given the time of day until now. So they are BOTH terrorizing the cats. It’s funny, but now I have large clumps of cat hair that have been pulled out of poor Olivia (aka That Gray Cat) and Genovia (aka That White Cat).

It’s fun, but I gotta tell you…I have a new appreciation for folks with kiddos that are only a year apart. God bless you…I don’t think I could do it!

Five Years

Five years ago today, I gave birth to the most beautiful little boy I had ever seen. His name is Charlie. He is now an angel. He became an angel 24 days after he became my son. I miss him dearly.

I can’t help but think about the fact that we would be planning for him to start kindergarten in the fall. He would know how to play football, soccer, baseball. He would do “real people” stuff.
A friend (who also has an angel) told me that she heard that if you “give your angel a gift” he will receive it in Heaven. She sent Charlie a plate of chocolate cupcakes with lots of icing to share with all his friends.
I wished for Charlie to have a pony ride. Seems like something a 5 year old would want to do. But I guess he still looks like a 24 day old. So that’s an even cuter image…a baby riding a pony.
Anyway, after 5 years, the pain IS still there. Not all the time. It’s tucked away in a drawer in my heart, but sometimes that drawer gets opened and it all comes rushing back.
To my precious Charlie…Happy Birthday. You will always be my special angel. I love you and think of you every minute of the day. I would give anything to be able to hold you again, but I guess one day I will get that chance. Until then…Mommy loves you!

How we spent our Tornado Holiday!

Henry’s school was closed today because of the devastating tornadoes in Macon. And at this point I am assuming the school is OPEN tomorrow because I haven’t heard from them. Seriously, the damage to the city is astronomical. I mean, the Krispy Kreme was destroyed. My heart goes out to the families who have been affected by this terrible act of nature.

Anyway, I had a doctor’s appointment this morning. A follow up (“I don’t trust you”) appointment with the ENT about my Afrin “problem”. He was proud and surprised that I had actually successfully detoxed from it. And for those who are wondering, from here we go on a higher dose of allergy meds for a while and then possibly some sort of procedure he was telling me about (blah, blah, blah…). Shout out to Jason who agreed to keep Henry at home while I went to the doctor. That REALLY helped out a lot!
After my appointment, I came home and got Henry. We ran a few errands – went to the bank, laundry, and then on a DATE!
We went to Stevie B’s Pizza. It’s one of those buffet pizza places. He sat like a gentleman, had 3 pieces of cheese pizza, danced in the booth to some crazy 70’s song and had a nice time. After that I promised him a trip to Target. That is special because he has been banned (by me) from Target for several months now. He has thrown too many fits in there to be allowed to go. So I told him he could get a toy today and he was excited.
He looked at every.single.toy.in.the.store and finally decided on a Monster Truck mud pit or something silly like that. He seems to enjoy it. Actually, as I type, he is sleeping in his bed WITH it.
So we had a great day together. He told Jason tonight that he went on a date with me. It made me feel so special! So I celebrated Mother’s Day with Henry today.

Handmade Gifts…gotta love em!

I received the most beautiful gift from Henry yesterday.

A flower pot with (what was) a pink flowering Impatiens. However, our cat Olivia got ahold of the flowers, leaving little sticks where the flowers once were. But he had decorated it with blue stick-on flowers and it said “Happy Mother’s Day…Montessori of Macon Transition Class 2008″. So sweet.

This morning I got a card from Jason and a card from Henry. And then we went for lunch at Waffle House. Yes, we missed church. But there were 2 F2 tornadoes that touched down in Macon last night and there were orders not to drive in Bibb County at all, so we obeyed the orders.

All in all, it’s been an OK day. Nothing out of the ordinary. Just another day…except I got a 5 minute nap on the playroom floor while Henry was reading to me! Any time the word NAP is involved, it feels like a holiday!!!

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