Monthly Archives: December 2013

The Curse of Christmas

Every year, the weekend of Thanksgiving, the trees begin to come out and the lights are sparkling! It’s the beginning of the Christmas season! Most everyone is excited to put up the tree and decorate for the holidays. I was that person…the person who’s tree went up on Thanksgiving weekend NO MATTER WHAT! Now I can barely stand the thought of dragging out the decorations, much less looking at them for over a month. It’s a constant reminder of what’s to come.

December 1994, I was 21 years old. I was happily married to my high school sweetheart. We had a beautiful baby boy who would be two years old in February. We were young, in love, and living the American dream! I stayed home with our baby and he worked a full time job. He was also an amateur boxer with dreams to attend the Olympics. We were so innocent, so trusting of life, so content…but that all changed quickly and suddenly on December 26, 1994.
2676_75491485609_5694593_n
(The day after our son was born)

We had a great Christmas! Our son was so excited about the tree, lights, and presents! He was able to understand the concept of Santa and presents, although Santa was not his favorite person! We had a great Christmas with family and friends. 2676_75491480609_5634713_n
(My son’s Christmas picture)

The day after Christmas, my husband went hunting with his brother. Little did I know, our morning good-bye kiss would be the last time our lips would touch.

Me and my son were busy that day. We put our gifts away, cleaned out the closets, and my son happily informed me “I colored….on the wall!” That meant mommy had to scrub the ink off the wall before daddy got home to see his sons artwork!

Then the call came…just after lunch…

My mother-in-law called to tell me there had been an accident. I panicked! All I could think of was my husband has been shot in the woods. The next few hours were a blur. My in-laws picked me and my son up and we headed to the hospital. I remember clearly my mother-in-law saying the Lord’s Prayer over and over. I prayed in silence while my son fell asleep. It seemed like the hospital was hours away.

When we arrived, a doctor came out to meet with us. I took one look at his face and I knew….NO, NO, NO! Please just stop talking! I didn’t want to hear the words but my mind wouldn’t allow me to block out the sound! “Your husband was killed in a car accident…we did everything we could do to save him.”

The next five days were filled with the most pain I’ve ever felt in all my life. I cried, I screamed, I begged…I just wanted it to be December 25th again so I could say “Please don’t go hunting tomorrow!” No matter what I did, the days kept passing by and my husband would never walk back through our door again. I couldn’t imagine how I was supposed to go on without the love of my life. How was I supposed to tell my son he would never see his father again? How would we survive without him?

Five days after his death, I got my answer. I woke up and realized I was late. Mother nature had not visited since my husbands death. I took a test…I stood in shock, staring blankly at that little + sign…we were pregnant! Oh my God….I’m pregnant! We are having another baby! Then the reality hit…I am having another baby. My husband would not be able to experience the joy of another child with me.

The news spread quickly. For the first time in days, life once again seemed possible. God had granted me a miracle to help me and my son through this tragedy. We now had something to look forward to, instead of always wanting to look back.

8 months after my husbands death, I gave birth to a beautiful, healthy, vibrant baby girl! She looked just like her daddy. Over the years I’ve realized she acts just like her daddy. She brought happiness and hope back to a family that was broken. Our one last gift from her daddy.
5928_148301400609_2644231_n

Over the years, Christmas has become easier to cope with. When the lights come out, the dread is still there, but the pain is shadowed by the happiness and love that fills our home. I was not only blessed with 3 more children, but I was also lucky to maintain a wonderful relationship with my first husbands family. My 3 younger children are blessed with an extra set of grandparents who love them like they are their own. I would like to think my husband is smiling down on us, happy that we all stuck together through the rough times!

There is not a day goes by that I don’t think of my first husband. I see him in our kids, I feel him in my heart. I know we have a special guardian angel looking out for us. I also know he is proud of the family he left behind. In spite of the darkness that surrounds the Christmas Holidays for us, we find a way to shine a light for the kids. Just like the sun will continue to rise and set, Christmas will continue to come and go. The memories we choose to associate with it is a choice we make for ourselves!

18340_282281585609_6216542_n
(My husband, my son, and Evander Holyfield–my husbands last boxing match in November)

181576_10150144665475610_8388105_n
(And baby girl makes three!)

My Knight Wears Camo

Today is my 7th Anniversary! Against all odds, we’ve made it 7 years! It’s the longest I’ve ever been married! This is an accomplishment since I’ve had a history of picking Mr. Wrong! This time, I finally got it right! If you would’ve asked me 7 years ago if we would still be married, I would’ve surprised you with “probably not!” Not because I didn’t love him, but because I had lost faith in living happily ever after! My happiness seemed short-lived no matter how wonderful the man may have seemed!

My husband took on a wife 9.5 years older, 4 kids, 2 dogs, and a whole lot of emotional baggage! He loved me through some of the hardest times in my life. He picked me up when all I wanted to do was lay down! He’s been an amazing husband, father, and provider. He is not only my soul mate, but the father my kids deserve to have. I’m so thankful God chose me to be his wife. I may not have always understood God’s plan, but this one makes sense of all the “what the hell’s” of my past!

We will be celebrating apart this year. He is tucked far away on a submarine counting down the days until we are reunited. I am at home with my five kids, trying to stay busy so our time apart will go by quickly! Tonight, I will sit in the audience and watch my 15 year old perform in the Choir Christmas performance. I may be playing the role of a single parent, but somewhere out there, a man lies alone dreaming of the day he is reunited with those who love him the most!

Happy Anniversary Chris! I can’t wait to hear your voice, smell your scent, and hold you close once again! You will forever be my hero! I love you endlessly!

996591_10151834630830610_1636922911_n
(My husband and our baby girl a week before he deployed!)

MUST. HAVE. SLEEP!!

I remember my 20’s with great fondness and admiration for the fast-paced lifestyle I lived! I was a young mother with 4 children before I hit my 30th birthday! I remember saying,  “I want to make sure I’m finished having kids before the BIG 3-0!” So with the birth of #4, a beautiful baby girl, my child bearing days were behind me! I succeeded! I signed those papers, the doctor tied those tubes, and I considered my life a success! After all, I was young, had 4 beautiful kids, and I could keep up with them!

Then life happened! I found myself divorced and in a relationship with a younger man. He knew there would be no children when he “put a ring on it”….there would be no more babies…NO WAY! I was in my 30’s for God sake! I was MUCH too old! Been there, done that….wrote the book and all that jazz!

Fast forward 5 years in to a happy marriage. We reconsidered…and by “we”, I mean ME! I did the research and underwent a tubal reversal! 2 years later, at 40 years old, I gave birth to #5, and presumably  the last! 3 weeks after her birth, my husband was deployed. I was left alone with a newborn baby, post partum depression, 2 teenage girls and 1 preteen girl who thinks she’s grown!

The first 3 months were great! I’m a pro! Let’s face it, I’ve done this before…4 times to be exact! I can do this in my sleep! But there lies the problem…I can’t sleep! I’m tired! I just want one night of peaceful dreams! I want one night where someone else carries the load! This week has been extra hard! Baby girl is sick! She’s cried relentlessly! I’ve held her for 2 days! This morning I found myself curled up in a fetal position, crying right along with her! fetal position

I received an email written on Thanksgiving from my darling, sweet husband! ” No turkey for me. I slept. The way I figured it out, the more I sleep the quicker the rest of the time out here will go, so I have been trying to sleep as much as possible.”

WHHAAATTTT!!!!! Seriously??? F**k!!  All I could think was how freaking jealous I am! I WANT SLEEP DAMNIT!!! Then I began to think of how many nights he “owes” me! How many Saturday mornings I will have stock piled by the time he gets home! I swear to God, if he complains one time about “lack of sleep” I may go all Lorena Bobbitt on his, well, you know!

lorena-bobbitt-just-merely-uttering-her-name-and-can-hear-ev-demotivational-posters-1368865017

Just kidding! I think the sleep deprivation has done it’s damage…I’m now a deranged lunatic! Good night all! I’m going to go hide all the scissors before attempting to get some much needed sleep!