September 5, 2009

Oh, September

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , at 12:55 am by letterstoelias

Hello My Love,

I have so much I want to say to you.  So much I need to say to you.  I apologize in advance for the novel tonight.  It’s been an incredibly busy and somewhat challenging week.  I’ve had a cold the past few days and have just been feeling exhausted.  Beat down.  Devoid of energy.
I’ve been trying to go to sleep earlier to get rest, but it doesn’t always work out that way and even when it does it seems there are other factors that cause me to loose sleep anyhow (waking children, ticking fridges, panicky dog during thunder storms, thunder storms, thoughts of you).  All this along with a semi-functioning laptop has made it more difficult to write (I know, I could use the desktop computer to write but then I would have to sit at the desk late at night and I don’t like doing that as much).  Anyhow, I’m just trying to make excuses I suppose – but I think of writing every day and plan letters in my head.  It’s just been harder to get them down.

We ended up having a great day at the PNE last week.  I’m glad my Mom came, and we went with the Straw family which made it even more fun.  Especially watching Sian trying to eat the deep fried mars bar (‘this’ close to putting up a photo of it).  And no, try as I might I didn’t get her on the Coaster.  Not even guilting her with the story of you and your love of the PNE and the tradition of the Coaster did the trick.  I figured though, if she wasn’t pushed onto it by that, then she must be REALLY scared and I should leave well enough alone.  The kids had a blast – they loved the petting ‘zoo’ the most (basically a bunch of goats and some funky looking chickens), the Super Dogs, and they went on a number of kiddie rides.  E and Dylan even went on the huge ferris wheel with Sian and I.  E loved it and when we came to the top she exclaimed ‘We can see the whole world from up here!’    It was an incredibly long day, however.  We didn’t know the ferry schedule and of course when we arrived at the terminal we had ‘just’ missed a sailing, so we had the 2hr wait and didn’t get home until almost 10pm.  I worked on Friday, then was up until 1am getting ready for the garage sale.

August 09 039 August 09 060 August 09 067 August 09 082 August 09 132

My mom came over to help with the garage sale, and the girls ‘helped’ too.  I ended up selling a fair amount of stuff, but it was a lot of work.  Anna and Bob came by just as we were wrapping up and they took E to ‘Digger Day’ while I tried to put C down for a nap.  And, the air hockey table found a good home with them, so I’ll still be able to play on it now and then.  By the time Sunday came around I was worn out, and had developed the cold to boot.  I had planned on getting the house and yard back in order (the yard has been a bit neglected lately) but all I could muster was to lie on the couch, trying not to doze off, and barking the odd command at the girls.  I’m sorry I haven’t kept up as well with the yard – your parents and I had talked a couple of times about them coming over some weekend to tackle it together but unfortunately it hasn’t worked out as of yet.  I need to build an arbour for the grape vine though as it really took off this year and I have no where for it to go.  I hope to one day complete your vision of an arbour outlining the deck.  I wish I could find that drawing you had done with your plans, but I haven’t come across it.

On Monday I had the day off and the girls were with Buz and Sian.  I didn’t have to work so I took some time to try and put the garage back together and along the way added a project for myself – I built a palette for the pellets.  We had two already, and I found a box of scrap wood in the shed (and loved the fact that the box itself was actually made of scrap wood as well – hinged lid and all – so very you it made me smile) so I used it to make a third.  As I was using a rather, ‘unconventional’ way of sawing the wood I could just hear you saying, ‘What the hell . . .’ or ‘Get out of here’ or ‘You’re crazy’ and laughing at me.  Still, I got it done with only one minor wound as a badge of honour.  I had a long list of projects for that day.  Only a fraction of them were completed and I started to hit the wall around 4pm.  Ran out of steam.

I worked my usual 4hr shift on Tues, but Jason asked me to work a little longer on Wed as it’s our busy week for students.  I was a little worried that the longer day would be tiring for my Mom, but she was out there playing monster on the trampoline, eating play dough feasts, gave the girls baths and I could just hear giggling most of the day.  Yesterday the girls and I were on the 6:20am ferry as I had to work in Vancouver.  Because of a mouldy bread issue, I ended up taking them into the cafeteria on the ferry for breakfast.  That was the first time I’ve been in there since you died.  It was hard.  On many levels.  I was ready to get out of there and back to the car pretty quick after we finished eating.  Your parents met me at the office and took the girls for the day while I worked.  They took them by your mom’s work site, then off to the aquarium for a few hours.  They all had a great time.  It was tough to be working in the office again – but it was nice to see everyone again.  I teared up a few times throughout the day, and was quite nervous taking the calls, but I got through it with lots of deep breaths.  I feel almost like a new staff member though.  I had to ask lots of questions as I seem to have forgotten so much, or it’s just harder to focus, or I’ve lost some confidence, or something.  It’s just harder.  My brain feels like mush.  Andrew discovered a virus in my laptop and was able to get rid of it though, so now it’s working much better (which makes it much easier for me to write to you).

I was working there for the full day again today, and this time your parents took the girls out to the Greater Vancouver Zoo so it was another fun day for them.  I managed through the day and am very slowly getting back into the rhythm of things.  One other plus of the Vancouver days was I spent my lunch breaks with Martin.  He took me to his workshop so I could see the urn he’s working on.  It’s amazing.  A true piece of art.  I don’t have any idea where he comes up with the vision for something like that, but he says he knows you’re in there with him when he works on it.  We also went to see the tree he planted on Spanish Banks in memory of you.  The tree is thriving and it’s in a beautiful spot.  Tomorrow I’ll be catching up with some friends, and had originally planned on trying to pick up some things at a couple of stores, but I think it’s too much to try and fit in and I’m still so tired.  I’m almost over the cold though, finally.

I have to say, as I changed the calendar this month I had no idea just how little I was looking forward to September.  The work in Vancouver was a worry, but I’ve gotten through that now.  But, E will be starting preschool in just 10 days.  It’s a big step.  You’re not here to see it.  She can’t share it with you.  But most of all I’m having a hard time with the fact that it’s almost C’s birthday.  I think this may be even harder than our anniversary.  That was so soon after you died it was pretty much a blur, and it was also more of a private thing for me.  This will be the first birthday (between the four of us) that you will miss.  I don’t want to dread my baby’s birthday, but I do.  It’s so hard.
I don’t like feeling like all I’m doing is complaining – I’m not looking for pity – but everything is just hard.  Everything just takes more effort.  I’m trying to give myself a break when I can’t keep up with everything and just let the dishes/vacuuming/lawn mowing/etc go a little longer here and there, but it’s not just that.  I feel like I’m unsure all the time.  I’ve lost confidence.  I have more anxiety then I used to.  I wouldn’t be surprised if I’m suffering some form of post traumatic stress syndrome from the night you died as well – because even though we knew your chances were not that good, it was still not anything like we expected.  A complete shock.  It plays over and over in my head.  Most often, of course, at night when I’m alone, trying to sleep.  I’m still not used to being alone at night.  Sometimes it feels as though I have an anvil on my chest.  Even breathing takes effort.  I miss you in every way imaginable and it hurts.  Emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually.  For the first couple of months, probably because of the shock, everything was such a blur.  Some of it still is, but now it’s different.  I know that this situation has changed me in positive ways as well, but those feel less prominent right now.

The girls hurt too, and are expressing it more.  The other night before bed we discovered E’s locket was missing.  She was quite upset initially, but then was of course distracted by something else rather quickly.  I looked around a bit, but it was getting late so I told her we would look again in the morning.  I was troubled by the situation though, and so it didn’t help matters when I chose to read a book about what happens to your spirit when you go to ‘the next place’.  While it always choked me up initially, I had gotten to the point where I could read it without crying.  Not this night however.  It got me and I couldn’t help it.  It wasn’t for long though and I finished the book, but as we were talking to you E said to you, “I don’t care.  I don’t care about anyone but myself.  Mama was crying while reading the book because she was sad, but I’m not’.  Then she stopped.  I waited a moment or two and asked if she was finished and she said yes.  A moment later she started to cry.  She was sad.  She had been trying to convince herself otherwise, but it didn’t work.  She told me to ask her if she was sad from missing you and when I did she said yes, then C said ‘Me.  Aia.’ (she doesn’t pronounce the ‘C’ yet) to let me know that she missed you too.  We had a big cuddle and cry.  The next night after C fell asleep, E asked my why you died.  Then she asked how you got the brain tumour (she figured it was from the seizures).  Not the first time these questions have come up, but it hasn’t been often.  She would throw in the odd, random, completely unrelated question now and then too, but we had quite a talk.  It’s pretty tough to explain cancer to a 4yr old when I don’t understand ‘why’ though.  Cancer sucks.  Her biggest worry should be what she will make with play dough today.  Not this.

And, though it’s hard, we are coping.    The girls are thriving.  Growing, learning, laughing.  They are beautiful.  They are amazing.  They are smart.  They are you.  They are everything to me . . . they are love.

As are you.

~C~

P.S. I Love You

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