Sunday, December 30, 2012

A Special Bond

I am blessed to have a very special woman in my life, a woman who I have mentioned in my blogs every once in a while before, but never really told the story of how truly amazing she is. You see, I am very blessed to have parents who love me, a mom a dad, and 2 step parents as well, who drive me crazy at times but I wouldn’t trade for the world. Then I have my momma, the woman who has loved me as her own child since I entered her life 7 years ago, my son’s grandmother. I have mentioned before that things did not work out between my son’s father and I, we have gone our separate ways and are happy with our lives now. But that doesn’t mean that I lost my momma. She and I are just as close, talk just as much, and love each other the same as we have all along. I always said that she was more than my “mother-in-law” she was my best friend. When I had a problem, or would get into an argument with Bug’s daddy, I wouldn’t go to my family, or call a girlfriend, I would go to her house, sit up with her all night, and vent to her. She was always there to listen, to talk to, and always just supported me. We did everything together. People always thought when we went out that I was her daughter, I can’t count how many times I was told that I look just like her, and I know that I act just like her too. People always think that we are either sisters or mother and daughter, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I was really scared when me and bug’s daddy first ended our relationship that I would lose my momma, that over time we would begin to drift apart and I would slowly lost the woman I loved just as much as my own parents. Looking back on the last 6 months I know that it will never happen. That no matter what happens, no matter where my life goes, or her son’s life goes, that my momma will always love me like her own. I know that my momma misses the Bug so much. My baby was and still is the center of her world. She has so many pictures of him everywhere, and not a day goes by that she doesn’t talk to him. I hate that we have to have this together, that we have to hurt together, but losing the bug, the loss that we shared, made our bond, our friendship even stronger. I thank god that I have my momma, and that I am blessed with a 5th parent, who loves me just as much as her own children. I love you momma, NO MATTER WHAT!!!!!!!

My momma and the bug

Survived Another Christmas

Christmas was this week and it was fairly easy on me this year. I don’t know why but Christmas Eve was harder for me than Christmas day. I woke up that morning, looked up at the Christmas tree and began to cry. I just laid there for a bit, thinking of my son, thinking of what I should be doing with him, how I should be getting him all excited to open presents, preparing to haul him around from family home to family home all day watching them shower him with love and watching him get excited about opening gifts and playing with everyone. I always go visit him both Christmas Eve and Christmas day, so I called his grandma on his daddy's side and asked him if she wanted to go with me to visit him. We decided to go, and exchange our Christmas presents there with him as well, and also visit her youngest son who is buried at the same cemetery as bug, he was born sleeping 10 years ago. When I got to the cemetery I decided to go up and arrange things for him to make room for his Christmas decorations, I brought a few things in that had been there a while, making room for his festive decorations that we put out for him every year. I sat there and cried a bit more, singing him a Christmas song, and telling him that I could only imagine how beautiful Christmas in heaven was. When his grandma arrived, we gave him all of his Christmas goodies, talked to him for a bit, told him we loved him and merry Christmas. Of course we cried too, how could we not when we miss him so much. I was surprised that his daddy came up there with us as well. I didn’t know that he was joining us but was very glad that he did. He is usually pretty quiet when he visits, but it is still good to have that moment with our son, as a family. We may not be together anymore but it’s nice that we can still be decent and do things together for our son. Even though he is not here, I know it means a lot to him. We went on to visit bug's uncle and also his great grandfather, and then we did our little Christmas gift exchange. I gave his daddy a hug, told him merry Christmas, and that it meant a lot having him there, and I know it meant a lot to our son too. After the cemetery I went on to spend time with my family, visiting my grandparents and everyone, crying on and off at certain Christmas songs on the radio, but doing my best to hide it. I know that my family understands and feels the pain as well, but sometimes it’s just easier to hide it and enjoy the happy times. Christmas morning I had to fight back the tears a few times. Watching my brothers and sisters open their gifts was pretty hard, because I will never experience that with Payton, but I know that he was there in spirit, ripping and tearing the paper, laughing and shouting in excitement with every gift. We may not have seen him or heard him but I felt him there. After that I went to visit a very dear friend of mine, who has been like family to me for a long time. He was like an uncle to the Bug and loves him and misses him so much too. He and his son had got the bug a Christmas present too and we wanted to go give it to him. It was a fire truck that had lights and sounds and was so much fun! His son, who is only 3, was my bug's best friend, and came with us. He sang jingle bells to the bug with me, told him "Merry Christmas, I love you!" and was running around the field in the cemetery while we were visiting. I told his daddy that I could literally just feel Bug running with his best friend, laughing with him, and I knew he was there. With watching him running and playing, and knowing that my angel was there too, I couldn’t cry, visiting him like that actually brought joy to my heart. It was very comforting. I went through the day on Christmas and was actually very relieved at how ok I was. I didn’t have to fight back tears as I did the day before, it was a much easier day then I expected it to be. Maybe it was because I knew my son was with me, maybe it was because he wanted me to have a merry Christmas, I don’t know, but I felt at peace. I know that the holidays will always be hard, something will always be missing. I will always have to visit that cemetery and shed a tear, but I know that in heaven Christmas is beautiful, there is snow that is so beautiful, so pure, and it just glistens with beauty beyond words on the golden streets. I know that the Christmas lights and trees here have nothing on the decorations in heaven. I know that every year, my bug, is going to celebrate the most amazingly spectacular Christmas in heaven, and until I get there to celebrate with him, I am going to do my best to enjoy the holiday down here. I’m going to try and celebrate along with him since I have to celebrate away from him. It's all I can do in the meantime.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

remembering the children

20 precious angels, whose little lives had just begun, who went to school that morning excited to learn something new, sitting in a room, filled with artwork that their little hands had worked so hard on, walls filled with ABC's and 123's. 20 little precious babies who were trying their hardest to make the nice list for Santa. Who were so excited to sit on Santa’s lap, give them their lists. 20 homes that on Christmas morning, will not be filled with the joyous yells of children as they open their gifts, but instead with the sounds of tears and screams as parents because Santa cant give them what they really want, their children back. 20 children who will never get to experience life, who will never get to learn to drive, graduate high school, attend prom, have their own children, 20 wedding days that will never come. These sweet children had just begun their lives and they are already over.

6 brave souls who dedicated their lives to educating children, who loved each of their children like their own. Who looked forward to seeing their smiles every day. 6 loving souls who went out with acts of bravery, to try and spare the lives of their small students. It takes a loving caring soul to be a teacher especially an elementary school teacher, someone with patience, a kind heart, a gentle touch, and a lot of love.

 And finally the survivors, the children who were in the school that day as well and were so terrified. The teachers who jumped into action, protecting their students, telling them they were loved, trying to keep them calm and praying for safety. the first responders who had to rush in and see the horrific scene that will be burned into their heads forever, the parents who waited to see if their children were ok, praying to god that they were not harmed. The entire town, the entire nation, everyone affected by this tragedy.

Schools, especially elementary schools, are supposed to be a safe place. A place where their parents felt the only danger they could face was being called a doody head or being told they had cooties! What kind of world do we live in that school is not even safe for small children! I keep trying to make sense of it, and I just can’t. Never before has a tragedy like this hit me so hard. I was so young when 9/11 hit so when I saw it on TV over and over I remember being sad and hurt and as I grew up more and more I would cry when I saw footage of it because I had begun to understand what had happened. when I hear of news like this, the shooting in Colorado, school shootings, mall shootings, other acts of senseless evil, I pray for those affected, I feel sadness for them, and I thank god for what I have, but never have I been hit so hard by something like this.

Maybe it’s because I feel a connection to these parents because I too have lost a child suddenly and tragically. They sent their children to school that morning expecting to pick them up at the end of the day, safe and sound. I put my son to bed the night before he died, expecting to wake up to his big smiles the next morning, and like that family, I did not expect something to go so terribly wrong during something that was so routine. I just can’t stop crying as I watch the TV, and I want nothing more than to just go to the town of Newtown and hug every parent and child.

This tragedy has already begun to spark discussion and debate on a political level. Things like Gun control, school security, and other topics. I think that these topics do need to be discussed yes however is now the time and place? give these families respect, don’t turn their tragedy into a national debate, let them have their grief before everyone starts fighting over who could have stopped this and what should have been done to prevent it, what will be done to prevent it in the future and who is to blame for not doing something sooner. I think that everyone should back off those topics, not worry about the politics of this, and worry about uniting to honor and support the families of the lost. There is plenty of time for political discussion and debates after these parents have at least had the chance to lay their children to rest. It also doesn’t help that much of the media is making this a circus, interviewing the poor children, as if they haven’t been through enough, let’s exploit them and steal even more of their innocence. I feel like a lot of the media is not handling this with any compassion towards the victims and survivors of this tragedy. It’s really sad.

Then there is the killer, the man who we still don’t know much about. What is known is that he was clearly not well, he killed his mother, and then went on to senselessly kill 26 innocent people. The media keeps ringing up the fact that the shooter is believed to have a form of autism. I am shocked that they keep saying this like it’s an excuse or makes what he did ok in a way. "he didn’t know what he was doing, he was autistic" I understand that mental illness is a very complicated thing, I have seen firsthand a child giving you hugs and love on minute and then the next kicking and screaming, saying things like they want to kill everyone, just because you tell them it is bedtime. It is a very complicated illness that has a traumatic effect on the friends and family of the individual. I don’t think that it should be as much expressed by the media, I think that much like the political topics, this can be discussed. I don’t think that anyone should sympathize for this man until we know more about who he is, we know his name, that he was only 20, but other than that we don’t know motive, we don’t know lifestyle, it hasn’t even been confirmed, as far as I know, that he in fact was autistic or diagnosed as mentally ill. Think if it were your child, would you want someone to feel compassion for the man who killed your child just because he was sick? Would you want the act that stole your child to be justified like that? Again there is a time and place for everything.

As for me, I know that I will never forget these children. I know that I will never forget Dec 14, 2012. I know that I will keep them in my heart. I even said a prayer to my bug and asked him to give them a hug from me. I am just asking that everyone do the same, stop thinking about the politics, the excuses, and the media circus. Think of the children, remember them, and find a way to honor them this Christmas. Think of the families who are too hurt to celebrate this holiday. Think of those lost, remember the children.