Sunday, October 28, 2012

One Year

I am not sure how to write about the year mark of my daughter's death.  I feel so many conflicting feelings that shift hourly.  One minute I am still angry that she is gone.  I feel sad and stuck.  Another minute I feel excited and proud of myself that I survived the first year.  I feel relieved that it is passing me by.  I feel hopeful that this next year will be easier.  I feel guilty for feeling hope and guilty for leaving her behind.  I feel depressed that at times it seems as if I'm as sad as I was a year ago, maybe even more sad because a year ago, I was in such a fog of trauma.  It feels impossible to sum up all of the feelings I have had for the last few weeks.  But one thing that I have found is that often the anticipation of a big marker is the worst.  And it is also a lot easier for me to handle these markers when I can anticipate them.  

The beginning of October was difficult for me because I was not expecting it.  I didn't realize that the beginning of "THE month" or that the change in weather and the change in colors would result in such a big reaction from me.  But it did.  I naturally felt like I did a year ago.  And all of a sudden I felt like my life was frozen.  I felt discouraged that I would always be in this same place of paralyzing sadness.  But as the month has gone on, I actually feel better and more hopeful that I will someday have full capacity as a person back.  

Grief is so hard and it has changed me forever.  Sometimes that is hard to accept because I feel like I have been a pretty driven, optimistic person.  I'm not sure if that same person will return.  I still don't really feel like "me."  And it's scary to think because I don't always like myself the way I am right now.  I am overly anxious about things, I laugh less, I get overwhelmed very easily, I am sad often, and make other people feel uncomfortable because of my sadness.  I am hard on myself and feel guilty for stupid things all of the time.  I know that I will always feel a bit of emptiness and sadness for not having my daughter with me in this life time.  But I don't always want to feel the way I do most of the time now.  I want to feel normal and I want the normal life I had always anticipated having.  I guess I'm not sure what normal even means anymore though.  

Overall, at this time of year, I miss her.  I miss my life with her.  No matter how much I know that she is in heaven, that she is with loved ones, and that I will see her again and be with her again, I am still missing my sweet girl and wishing I felt as good as I did when she was alive.

Friday, October 26, 2012


We have had a week of Cottle visitors.  They came to support us in our Holly Hoop run.  It is one of my favorite things to see Briz play with her cousins.  And even though there were a few hard moments with the girls, they played so well.  Our house is now very quiet and poor Briz misses all of the socializing. I'm a boring mom, not quite as entertaining as her cousins, aunts, and grandparents.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Boring blog title, I know.  But I have a lot of little things to update, so here they are:

Started soccer class and I absolutely love watching Briz.  I always tell myself that I am going to get a bunch of stuff done during that time, like respond to emails, etc.  But I can't stop watching and laughing.  Of course, like all of her other classes, getting stamps at the very end is the most exciting part.

Up until a few days ago, it has been gorgeous weather here.  Like unusual sunniness, which we deserve because overall, the weather in Oregon has been crappy this year.  So we tried to spend our spare moments outside.  Here we are doing some chalk drawing, and this is my body outline.  It really is an extreme likeness.

Fall Shopping.  It's amazing how I think Briz has a ton of clothes and then as soon as the seasons change, I freak out about her not having any of the clothes she needs.  So to Old Navy we went.  And the highlight for Briz was standing with this "nice family."  She asked me to take a picture of her with them.

Also started ballet class, and she could not love it more.  Her pirouettes and gallops are being refined and she loves telling me that she's a ballerina.  She also loves all of her new little friends.

I love this picture of her giggling with her friend and looking at themselves in the mirror.

I have been working a lot.  I am very excited for November 6th, not only because I will be excited to pull an all nighter watching CNN but because I will be relieved.  In the meantime, Briz has been very patient and likes to work with me in my office sometimes on her own "computer."

Uncle James was nice enough to give us tickets to the Ducks/Washington game.  We were in the student section, right where we want to be.  Except, when our  neighbor decided to throw up everywhere.  Awesome.  It was still fun though.  

Watched Conference.  It was a great weekend.  I loved so many of the talks, but in particular Elder Bowen's talk.  It felt like it was just us for our family and what we needed to hear.  I can always be reminded of the healing power of the atonement when it comes to grieving.

Briz was a sport and loved Bingo.  Except every time she put a sticker on she would yell, "I won!"  She is getting extremely competitive these days and wants to win at everything.  We are still working on being a good loser.

We headed to the pumpkin patch where we got pumpkins for Briz and Holly.

Loves being sarcastically obedient, whether it's "Yes your majesty" or  "Yes sir!"  Here she looks like she is saying "Hail Hitler" which truthfully wouldn't surprise me.  Also, we have been having fun with  Halloween tattoos.

The rain has officially come.  And so out come the rain boots.  Briz being so excited about her boots makes the rain almost worth it.

Briz with her pumpkins.

This is her new favorite pose, sticking her tongue out.

She found this piece of old corn and carried it around with her everywhere.  She made me bring it home (which may or may not have been stealing).  I am pretty sure it is still in my purse.

Other updates:

- We are trying to rent, sell, or rent/sell our house.  I hate it and I want it to be over with already.  It's a huge pain.

- We have been busy planning the Holly Hoop.  We have a bunch of family coming into town this week which I am excited for.  But Nick and I have been nonstop busy.  When I get to sit down and read at night for thirty minutes I am thrilled.

- I learned how to do subway art on pic monkey.  Oh yeah, I discovered pic monkey and it's a problem.