Friday, December 28, 2012
Thursday, December 27, 2012
Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Isnt' that the truth? I've said before how incredibly awesome my family is. I know that the heart of our family, the way we are the way we are is because of the love my parents instilled in all of us. It wasn't taught that this is how you love, this is how you show pride in yourself, this is how you help others, it was shown, it was intentional, it was lived every single day, in front of us.
My dad has never been shy about how much he loves his family, his wife, his children, his grandchildren and even those that aren't imediate family, he loves them, out loud. I've never been afraid that my dad doesn't love me. Its a great thing to be able to see a man do this and teach it, without even trying. It takes a strong man to be an openly loving man, especially in the days where it wasn't cool to be. The day that we found out that we lost Logan, Mom and Dad were up to our house within hours. I remember sitting on the floor in the living room, in front of the pellet stove, just staring at the flames, Dad, sitting in a chair next to me, also mesmerized by the flames, tears filling his eyes. He said to me that he didn't understand it all; why it had to happen, what happened... his heart was breaking, no I take that back, his heart was broke. Then he said something to me that I will never ever in a million years forget, 'You know babe, I would take his place in a heartbeat if it meant he could live.'
Wow, those words, so real, so heartbreaking, and I knew that he meant it. The love of a father said in a sentence. I told him to not even say something like that because I need him here with me. Nothing else was said, we went back to staring at the fire, but those words left such a huge impression on my heart, on my world!
Fastforward two years....
So, this year, my parents are celebrating Christmas at our house. It's not a large house, but it's filled with love. It's also filled with a three year old little tornado. She's such a whirlwind of fun and attitude and frustration and smiles. She likes to pretend that she's a princess, she has the dresses, the shoes, the jewelry. We had Christmas music playing in the kitchen and she comes in decked out like a royal princess should be and asked if I wanted to dance. My Dad stands up and tells Lexi that he would love to dance with her. I recorded this on my phone (and if I can figure out how to get it uploaded here you all would get to see it too). I've watched it at least ten times since it happened. Memories are being made. The smile of my dads face is seriously priceless. That is the face of a man who loves his family, openly, honestly and without limits.
Thanks for loving us so great Dad!
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Merry Christmas my dear friends!
Friday, November 30, 2012
Two years ago today my life was changed forever. We found out that our precious Logan’s heart had stopped beating. Last year I posted about our experience when we lost Logan, here, here and here.
This year I’m going to post about how much a person can grow from this kind of experience. So many things have happened in our lives since then, some great, some not so great and some we are still learning from. We’ve put together TWO events( here and here) in honor of Infant and pregnancy loss awareness. I’ve gained such a different perspective of life, that no matter how great you do things, how many things you do to help others, that sometimes, things can still go wrong. Sometimes things don’t turn out the way you planned. And it’s breathtaking, shocking and disheartening when these things happen. However, it is the way you choose to look at these events, or lack of events. You perception can either help you grow, help you discover different things about yourself and others, OR you can choose to become bitter, scarred and almost hateful… it’s all in what you choose!
I’m not going to say that there aren’t still days that I’m bitter about losing Logan, I can take myself down a very scary path of picking apart my entire pregnancy, picking apart my entire life up to that point. I can easily feel like God has punished me for doing something wrong, maybe that piece of candy that I ate at the grocery store when I was 9 and I didn’t pay for it, maybe because I punished Lexi to harshly when she spilled something… When you allow yourself to go down that road you tend to start feeling that maybe it was a good thing that you didn’t ‘get you way’… Maybe God was right to ‘punish’ you… It’s a very very slippery slope and one that I try to stay away from.
Most days are good. Most days I get through it just fine knowing that I still don’t really understand why God chose us to lose a child, but knowing and having faith that there is a reason. I really do believe that one of my purposes in life is to become an advocate for other families who have lost a child… but I also feel like that simply isn’t enough. I feel like Logan’s legacy is so much bigger than my advocacy. It’s like I’m searching for a big old bright blinking sign that says “HEY HEATHER… IT’S OVER HERE!”
I’ve met some GREAT people along the way. I’ve met some people who will forever and always be in my life. Some people have always been there, some were presented to me when we lost Logan, but I feel confident that my life will not be complete without them. My family has provided me with such tremendous support. I’ve never ever felt a day that I had to hide what I was feeling, what I was thinking or that I had to filter what I wanted to say. THAT HAS HELPED ME IN MORE WAYS THAT I CAN EVEN DESCRIBE. We have had some family relationships that have fallen apart. When I look back at those particular relationships I can see that they were strained to begin with. When you add additional stress to those relationships it just makes them break. I think that a lot of people are lost for words when a situation like child loss comes up. No one knows what to say, or they fear that they say the wrong things so nothing is said and then the bereaved parents takes that as an insult, as these other people don’t care... I know now that it’s not that they don’t care, it’s just hard… and then, there is a separation for so long that it’s just uncomfortable and let’s face it, no one likes to be uncomfortable. I’d like to fix these broken relationships, but sometimes breaks aren’t fixable.
I’ve found strength in me that I didn’t know I had. I often here others say that they wouldn’t be able to go through losing a child as well as I did… you know what, I did what I had to do. I followed my heart and went in the direction it lead me. Sure it’s hard, sure it’s scary, but somewhere you’ve got to believe that these things to happen for a reason. That has helped with every step that I’ve taken. Being informed has also helped. Knowing that I didn’t make Logan die. Knowing that because I didn’t take a prenatal vitamin for the last month of his life he would have died anyway. It sounds weird but the entire time I was in the hospital, up to the moment that we saw Logan, I was determined that I had killed him. Since then Johnny has had the same thoughts because he had worked with lead paint… it’s hard to keep those things out of your mind, REALLY HARD. Logan had a genetic defect that caused him to die, a GENETIC defect. Not Heather forgot to take a prenatal vitamin with DHA and her son died. Try repeating that in your head every day of your life!!
I guess my entire reason for this post is to make sure that others know that it does get better… not in a sense that the heartache is somehow miraculously fixed, because it’s not, that hole in your heart stays there forever, but the heartache doesn’t hurt as bad. You can move forward in your life, you can be happy again and not feel guilty. You baby touched your life and brought you so much happiness for the small time they were with you, but those that touch our hearts are never truly gone.
Love the ones that you’ve held, love the ones you get to hold… just remember that LOVE can conquer all.
So here we are getting ready to celebrate Logan’s 2nd Angelversary… Happy Angelversary buddy… please try to be a blessing to all the other littles that join you in Heaven. Show them the way. Show them how to touch their mommy’s heart the way you do every single day.
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Love you Jen!
|a Shopping day with Jen|
|Jen, me and Nickie|
Monday, November 19, 2012
I believe that I was raised to be who I am. I was lucky enough to have parents that allowed me to be who I was. They allowed me to discover who I wanted to be. Growing up I never felt pressure from my parents to fit into a little box of perfection, a little box that fit their needs. It may have been that I was the youngest of 4, if I dare say the surprise of the family, and I got the more laid back parents. Or it could be that God just gave my siblings and I some pretty amazing parents.
My parents allowed me to be crafty, they allowed me to be artistic, they allowed me to find that thing that really makes me excited… for instance we had a large picture window in our front room that allowed us to see the dirt road, the field behind the road and spectacular sunsets. It was beautiful. It was also an open canvas. I’m not really sure how it started, but somehow the idea of painting on this big beautiful window came to me. Mom was totally on board (or if she wasn’t, she never said no). She gave me some paints and said go for it… I basically just painted holiday scenes, but if you think about it… a holiday basically happens every single month. So, every single month for several years an image or two, or three was painted on this big picture window. I remember thinking how awesome it was that I got to do this, that everyone going up and down our street could see what I was doing… and I wasn’t ashamed of it. I was growing into a person who was okay with being different. I was growing into the me that I am now. It wasn’t just the window that I got to paint on. My room was COVERED in glow in the dark items. Stars galore, I even got glow in the dark paint and crayons for presents, to add to the decorations of my room. When visitors would come and stay the night they always slept in my room, I can remember my Aunt and Uncle saying that they felt like they were in outerspace because of all the stars… again, it was a small way that my parents allowed me to express myself. Stars could be taken down and walls could be painted over… looking back at those times when I was allowed to be creative has made me appreciate my parents more and more
Now that I have Lexi, it’s important for me to allow her to be who and what she wants to be. This weekend I bought a couple blank canvases, some paint brushes and allowed her to be creative. She loved being able to paint whatever she wanted… granted a lot of what she painted looks like a blob of blue, purple and green, but it’s her art… she claims that it’s a waterfall… and you know what. Lexi’s first painting is hanging on our wall of photos. And she’s proud of it! And I’m proud of it. Because right now she is forming who she will become. She is only three, I know, however, it’s these times that I can allow her to be free and not fear that there is any other force driving her… that she is acting and creating with her own little mind.. with no fear of how someone criticize her art, with no fear that someone will criticize HER… She can do this creative act FEARLESS… how awesome is that?!?!?
Thanks mom and dad for letting me ruin the windowsill of the big picture window. It took on additional colors every time I decided to be artsy…
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
I wrote an apology letter to a friend this week. A long overdue apology. I messed up and pulled away from a friend when I was going through things and couldn’t get me kicked into gear when she was going through things.. I had not been intentional in trying to make the friendship last. I had not been intentional in making sure that she knew I was sorry. The letter wasn’t a fix it all kind of letter, because I know it takes time to mend broken hearts.
I’d like to be intentional in my marriage. Actively pursuing my husband, as in when we were dating. Finding the things that make my stomach go into butterflies and my heart to feel like it’s going to pound out of my chest. My goal is to make date nights a reality. NO MATTER WHAT. We’ve got into this routine of wake up, work, home, make dinner, watch a small amount of tv and sleep.. TOTALLY NOT INTENTIONAL LIVING! I ran across this blog the other day and I love the idea of the questions… The mister wasn’t so exciting, but I’m going to try it… Make sure that my husband gets the good side of me. I may be tired and worn out when I get home, but he is too. Why do I find it okay to allow him to get the grouchy side of me? IT’S NOT OKAY.
Same thing goes for the little one. She is so happy to see me when I pick her up, but depending on my mood it can turn into a struggle to even get her in the car. It all boils down to ME. Am I intentional with her? Am I making sure she knows how much I love her? Am I intentional in allowing her to be a child? I often find myself explaining things to her that I KNOW her 3 year old mind can’t really comprehend. She wants to be a good girl above all things and really she is. When she’s ‘bad’ she really isn’t bad, its my fault for not slowing down and making her the center of my attention. I’m not intentional when it comes to her and I’m going to change that. I love what this post has to say about being intentional with your children..
I dare you… go out, be intentional!
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
It’s 11:09 pm on November 12, 2012. You are sound asleep in your bed, snuggled up with two books, Winnie the Pooh and a book about lady bugs, with two pillows on your bed, neither of which have a pillow case (because like your Daddy, you hate pillow cases) you’ve got snowmen and Christmas tree flannel sheets on your bed with a red throw over the top of you. Your fan is turned on low (or low low low like you say it) your fishie tank light is on, despite me turning it off before I said goodnight to you for the last time, your new pink Christmas tree is plugged in as well so your room looks like it’s the middle of some spectacularly colorful day.
I was getting ready to go to sleep when on my way into my room I glanced over to make sure you were covered up and to make sure your neck wasn’t in too awkward of a position and then I was struck with the absolutely wonderful thought… You are mine! I get to snuggle you every single day, even on days that you drive me nuts, you also melt my heart with huggies and kissys before you go to sleep. With the ‘g’night, love you, see you morrow’ that I always here in return as I’ve said the same thing to you on my way out your door. You are absolutely beautiful. You have such a caring and sweet soul about you. You stick up for those that you love, even if it is when mommy and daddy are playing around, or we get onto the dog about something… you understand unconditional love, you understand that family is the most important. You have made me strive to be a better person, to love better, to stop and truly listen with my heart instead of my head. Because of your beautiful soul I have found how I want to be when I grow up.
You have this amazing thing about you that you can make us laugh, even when we are crazy mad with you… most recently you’ve started doing this thing with your eyebrows…. Looking all serious with your brows furrowed and then break into this smile with your eyebrows way up… then you try to go back and forth really really fast, you always crack yourself up… and of course we can’t help but laugh too. You have a mouth on you girl… You are learning it from us, which means we may want to start a swear jar!!! You’ve been saying dammit recently, not really loud, under your breath, very discreet.. at first I didn’t know what you were saying until I stopped and paid attention.. You were playing a game and tapping on it and I don’t know if you hit the wrong thing, but all of a sudden you go ‘ugh, dammit’ slightly above a whisper. It totally caught me off guard, but I couldn’t help but laugh, so now you think it’s funny (which it is, but I’ve got to be the grown up, right?!!?) And then tonight on the way home you said I looked pretty, for no reason, but to just say it. You say bless you every time you hear someone sneeze… and you have such an attitude… ‘I just don’t care’ is another one of your favorite expressions right now (hoping that this passes very very soon!!.
Anyway baby girl. I wanted to take some time and focus in on you, how much I love your wide green eyes (daddy thinks they are more like his, but I think they are all your own) you’ve got this amazing infectious smile and this belly laugh that brings a smile to everyone’s face. And even right this moment, as you are snuggled in your bed you make my heart swell with love, and with appreciation. I thank God every single day that he chose me to be your mom.
I love you buggie!
Friday, October 26, 2012
Monday, October 22, 2012
It’s amazing how this one word can envelope so many emotions. It’s amazing how the word loss has a different meaning now that this word is part of who you are. It’s amazing how this word can change every single thing about who you thought you were, who you thought you’d be. LIFE CHANGING.
|(the back of Lexi's shirt - this year we got them so they could be personalized)|
Friday, September 14, 2012
Here is the website!
Love to all!
Thursday, September 6, 2012
I find myself feeling guilty for many different reasons. One is that I’m not doing the walk this year. Seriously breaks my heart, but with the cost of all of the things I just can’t afford to do it. It scares me that if I skip this year that it won’t be nearly as important to others next year. That’s something that I just have to pray about and trust that God will provide. Another reason I feel guilty is that I feel that I’m coping much better with losing Logan than Mr. Clear is. I know that everyone grieves differently in different timelines and in different ways, but I’m afraid that I need to hold myself back or I’m going to get frustrated, I just have to remember that we all deal with loss differently. Another reason I feel guilty, and this one is as backwards as can be, every time I tell my story about Logan, or offer myself to someone who has suffered a loss, every time I make known that I’ve lost a child, I feel guilty that I may be shattering the dreams of a pregnant soon to be mom. I know that when I was pregnant with Lexi there were people that had lost babies to miscarriage and I just simply didn’t want to hear it, so I ignored them. I somehow feel guilty about being so open about our loss. Backwards? I think so!
Guilt is so strange. It shows you where you are weak, it shows you where you are strong, but it’s something that we have to allow God to give us grace with as well. I am working on praying more about my guilt issues. I pray that God gives me the grace to forgive myself for feeling guilty. I pray that God will show us all the grace for feeling guilt.
Thursday, February 9, 2012
Every night on the way home that is what I hear. I get so frustrated because she obviously wants something that I can’t or won’t give her. And it often makes me wonder if I am a good mom. I know that there are areas where I am absolutely terrible, there are areas where I feel like I am fair, but there really isn’t one thing that I can say that I am absolutely positively awesome at… and that isn’t fair to Lexi.
Johnny and I have been blessed with Alexandria, our first born, our only living child and I feel that we are doing her a huge disservice by not being the absolute best parents that we can be. It’s hard to wrap your head around the fact that our actions right now are developing who she will be when she grows up. How Johnny and I act towards each other is laying the groundwork for what she will believe is how a relationship should work. Every step we take effects her life, currently and in the future. I often wonder if God underestimated the type of parents we would be when he blessed us with Lexi.
Don’t get me wrong. Lexi is such an awesome kiddo, really she is, full of spunk and life and energy. Full of attitude and knowing what she wants and determination that when she hears no, she hears maybe (yes aunt Wendy, she’s no doubt an orange!!!). But that same spunk and attitude can wear on me like no ones business. Sometimes I just think that I won’t be able to take one more thing from her. And then she gives me a hug and tells me she loves me and the world makes sense again… until about 5 seconds later when she tells me ‘I SAID NO’ and runs off pouting…
I guess the point of this post is to say that I know I should be a better parent, I don’t want to be a parent that is just good enough. I want to be the best parent. I want to be the parent that Lexi deserves. I guess that takes time and patience and understanding and love…
Dear Lord, please help me find the patience that you have obviously instilled in me, please help me find the calmness in the midst of the attitude storms. Please help me be the parent you have visioned.
Lexi, when you get older and read this, please know that your Daddy and I have done the best we can and hopefully we get better and better by the day. We love you!
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
I know that I haven’t posted since the ‘One year ago today” posts.. Those were really hard to write. Hard to go back and read, but they were truth, they were raw emotion, they were what my mind goes through on a daily basis.
I will say that life has gotten easier with time. Losing Logan is something that changed me forever. I will always think of Logan. No matter where I’m at, no matter what I’m doing, he’s always there, waiting to be mentioned. I know that it can make some people uncomfortable talking about my son that is dead, but it is so true that I think about him as much as I think about Lexi. All the time, every day. It’s not gut wrenching sadness and pain anymore.. don’t get me wrong there are totally those days that I need a good cry because I miss what should have been, I miss the fact that I should have an almost one year old. That on the 21st of this month that we should be celebrating Logan’s first year of life. But sadly that day will pass with birthday party, with no candles being blown out, with no one year old with blue frosting smeared all over his face. Maybe that happens in Heaven. Maybe on December 2nd Logan had a blow out party for being in Heaven for a year.. I’ll find out one day.
My Grandpa died last month, in January. He fell and broke his hip the weekend of Thanksgiving and went to a skilled nursing unit and developed a really bad infection and died. In my opinion he shouldn’t have died. It’s such a shame that the hospital took such poor care of him that he couldn’t live out the next 5 or so years he had left. He will be missed, he IS missed. He had a good life, a long life, saw so many things that I will never ever know about. He and my Grandma had been married for 65 years! That’s a lot of love to be together for that long. I only hope that Johnny and I can be together for that long… and not hurt each other!
Johnny, Lexi and I are buying a house! Hopefully we will be closing the end of this month.. and at that time I’ll post pictures… its so exciting, but so scary at the same time.. I mean are we really grown up enough to own a home?!?!?
I promise I'll try to post more frequently!