Fundraising Memorial in Honor of Alex

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I appreciate all the hard work people put into the fundraising event in memory of Alex. There was a lot of time, energy and money contributed this by many people. It was difficult for me to be there, only because it was one more way of making this hit home…this was going on to raise money for a scholarship in memory of my daughter, who is Heaven now, and she will not graduate with her class, or go to college or have a family of her own. So many things run through my mind in an instant when the grief hits. It is amazing how a person can have so many emotions and thoughts at the same time. 
I felt the love during this event..love for Alex..people really care about what happened to her, and were honoring her in a way that can hopefully live on. Thank you to all of you! Even though it was difficult for her family to attend or participate, it means a lot to us that this group of people were willing to work so hard to honor Alex. She certainly deserved it. I thank the people in the community, and the individual people, who contributed raffle prizes and donations for the event as well. I have never met such an incredible young woman, and the world is a lesser place because of her death
Making progress with not blaming God..still haven’t reconciled what I believe, versus the beliefs I had prior to this happening. It is a process, and a time of searching and seeking, which is okay to some degree, as it gives me a type of direction, instead of just being so engulfed in the pain that comes with this type of loss. Some days it is more difficult than others to focus on this part of the journey..I just take it as it comes. I try to pick up my book and study it so I learn, even if I can only manage to find one morsel of new information to try to piece together a new belief system and understanding of how the world works on a Spiritual basis…I accept that. 
I really enjoyed spending time with some of my closest friends at the event. We sat in the basement discussing some of what I have been learning, and some of what they have experienced. I have to be careful not to try to push what I am learning on to other people. Discussing what I am finding helps me to process, and figure out whether I can really adapt any of it into my new belief system or not…
Eli got to get up on stage and sing/scream with one of the bands. I know he really enjoyed it, even though he can’t hear very well today. Hope was able to attend, as we traded off, and I brought Landon home. Rob was there for a bit, and Landria is on her way back from Vegas, so she was not there. Thank you again to everyone. 
More later… Continue reading

The Life of a Grieving Mother

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It has been awhile since I posted anything. I have been trying to enjoy my time with the baby and kids. Today it has been ten weeks since Alex passed away. It feels like I am standing on the shoreline, and Alex is sailing away in a ship..never to see one another again. It is really too much to fathom this idea, yet it enters my mind and heart all the time. I finally ordered the Book, Why Do Bad Things Happen To Good People? So far, the concept that sometimes bad things happen..not because God is trying punish us or teach us something..and it isn’t God’s fault. When well intended people try to offer soothing explanations by saying things happen for a greater purpose, it really doesn’t soothe the person’s broken heart at all. The author validates this, as he lost his son at 14 from the disease that accelerates the aging process ( can’t remember the name of it). He also uses several examples of other individual’s tragedies, and the consensus was that there really isn’t an explanation that helps, except that God didn’t cause it, but He helps us with the survival of the tragedy. This is a concept that I can buy in to. I think it is Human Nature to want to place the blame on someone or something when tragedy strikes..anything to make sense of it. I believe it is part of the process. I have glimpses of moving past the point of needing to pin the blame on anyone. Last week, I made the mistake of viewing the video of the car after the accident, as ABC was there immediately after the accident. I saw that Alex’s airbag didn’t deploy, and my heart dropped. This car had a reconstructed title, so there is no way to blame Honda for this malfunction. It put a whole different spin on the cause, etc. on what happened, which is something I have to try to not envision. When I drive to Philomath, this seems to involuntarily fill my head with what the girls and Rylan must have experienced. I have had many questions, and when we realized what Alex’s condition really was, Rob and I both questioned if she was gone at the scene of the accident. So many questions that may never have a definitive answer. I still talk to her every morning and before I go to bed. This is very painful, as it really hits home that she is gone, and I won’t talk to her face to face..maybe ever.
You see, I have taken a break from writing because it is so deep and possibly depressing that I just couldn’t bring myself to pour all this out. It has helped so much, so here I am back at the keyboard.
I am having a difficult time not feeling abandoned by some people in my life. I have to remember that people have their own lives and issues they are facing. Perhaps I am being allowed to grieve more in a private fashion. I hope that if someone I am close ( or anyone that I cross paths with) to ever experiences the loss of their child that I can pass my experience on to them.
Eli has a track meet tomorrow, so I am going to watch him..I hope he enjoys the experience.
Hope and baby are doing well. I talked to Landria, and she is doing well in Vegas..seems to like the climate their better than Oregon..who can blame her? Rylan is still in North Dakota..he fell down and now has a black eye. Poor baby! I know he enjoys playing with his little friends out on the playground, but I hate to think of him getting hurt.
I will continue reading to unscramble my thoughts and gain some sort of peace with this unacceptable loss. I miss Alex so much…
More later…

I attended Eli’s track meet this afternoon. He did well for not having any experience or much practice. I have to say that it was difficult being at Eli and Alex’s school. One thing that gave me comfort, there was a huge double rainbow as we looked out from the stands. I am not sure if I can attend what would have been Alex’s graduation, but it isn’t until June, so I will not project what I may or may not be ready for at that point. I am learning to accept what I am ready for..I keep wanting to get on with things and trudge through everything..I am going to slow down..there is enough time for letting go of more of her things and showing up at the school where it is one more reminder that she is no longer here. How difficult this must be for her brother, friends and step-sisters; my heart goes out to all of you..Alex loved you and I am sure wants you to enjoy the rest of your Senior year. My heart also goes out to her sisters..I know their journeys through their grief is individual and unique, but still valid and deserves compassion and understanding. I lack this at times with my own grief and issues with what has happened. Rylan is so young that I don’t believe it has affected him like it would have if he were older. I have many friends who were like family to Alex, and I know it is painful for them as well. I am grateful for some of my cousins who have reached out to me through all of this..and last but NOT least, Gramps..he had such a special relationship with Alex, as did Rob. Still missing her..

Reconciling the Decision We Made

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Today it has been 9 weeks since Alex passed away. It feels like it just happened. I continue to put one foot in front of the other, as what choice do I have? I don’t even know what to post anymore, and this is sad because it has been such a useful tool for me to cope with the grief. I try to remember all the happy times with her, and post as many pictures that I can find to remember her…I feel I need to do more than this, as it not sustaining me anymore. To feel a disconnection with God is very difficult, as I have relied so heavily on this relationship for such a long time. I do not blame God for what happened to the girls, but I guess it is hard for me to trust Him now. We prayed and prayed for a Miracle..the Miracle we wanted and this didn’t happen. I knew this was a possibility, yet I was so desperate, I was willing to take this chance. I am sure I just need to work this out with God, and trust that He knew what he was doing. Or, maybe it wasn’t Him at all, after all, we made the decision to take her off life support..this creates problems for me, as I have a lot of guilt..like I gave up on her. The entire team of doctors told us we made the right decision, but I will forever wish she was here..selfish? Probably, as now she is free, without having to suffer.
Off to work to pretend all is okay in the world.
More later…

Weekend of grief, pain and friendship

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What a weekend…my friend Michelle stayed with me all weekend. We watched funny movies, talked until we were blue in the face, went out to lunch and cried as we talked about Alex. Oh, and we did a photo shoot with Landon. Hope was very generous with him, and let him hang out with us quite a bit. It was helpful to talk about all my thoughts and feeling about the accident, the hospitalization and how much I miss her, etc. I usually don’t talk very much about all of it, as it is so difficult to experience the pain that comes with doing that. I know it is an important part of healing, as it needs to come out, and not just stay stuffed inside. I am very grateful for the time we had this weekend. Thank you to her family for sharing, as I know they missed her this weekend.
Eli headed back to Philomath with his Dad, so it is just Hope, Landon and I.   I always miss him when he goes to his Dads.
On Mar. 24, I will have 21 years in recovery..it doesn’t seem to mean as much without Alex here. She always made my cake and was sure  there when I would get my chip. I raised her going to mtgs., and she was wise beyond her years partly because of this. All of my kids are…I will make  my cake, and I feel good about that. It doesn’t seem right to have anyone else make it, etc.
More later…

More Pain, Another Day…

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Time is of the essence…I know this is the only thing that will help us to adjust to life without Alex. Each day is so different..at times, it is overwhelming, and can’t escape the plaguing thoughts and feelings about our tremendous loss. I am feeling like all I do is say the same things over and over again. I don’t know if and when this will ever be something her Dad, brother and sisters and friends can ever accept..I doubt it. I know we are only a little over 7 weeks into this since she died, but it seems like an eternity. This is not the way life was supposed to be. I used to complain and feel sorry for myself because of the difficulties I have experienced from being a single parent for so long. I want to take all of that back. I wouldn’t trade any of those struggles for the world. Alex brought a lot of love and joy to my life from the time she was born. She took her time getting here, as she was two weeks overdue. Landria got chicken pox right around Alex’s due date, so it was a good thing that she was overdue. I had a hard time with postpartum depression after she was born, but it was never because of Alex. I loved her so much from the time she was born. When she would look up at me as I nursed her, she had so much love and light that poured out of her from her beautiful eyes. She slept with Rob and I until she was a toddler, as she wanted to be close..good thing Hope was the opposite and hated to be snuggled close after being fed. So funny how children can be so different when they come from the same parents. They each bring something different to the world, and that is part of why it is difficult to accept she is gone. She brought so much reason, love and spirit to our family. I miss her interactions with her friends and family. Watching her grow up into the young woman that she became was a true blessing. I do feel robbed of being able to watch her continue her journey into adult hood. She wanted to be a mom..although, she had a more realistic view of what this all entailed, so she wasn’t in any hurry. I know she would have done great things in her life if her life wouldn’t have been cut short. My hope is that she is still doing great things, even if it isn’t here on Earth. I want to believe that she an Angel, doing God’s work. I imagine that she visiting regularly with all our family who preceded her in death. I have some of the most wonderful memories with both sets of my grandparents, Great Aunts and Great Uncles and my mom. I pray that she is receiving that love from all of them, and comforting her if she needs it. I am sure that we are the ones who need comforting, as she most likely at peace and no longer suffering the way she did in her last couple of months here.
Thank you for being so patient with me as I process all of this on such public forum. I am starting to feel like perhaps I need to stop doing this..I know it has helped me tremendously throughout this journey, but I certainly do not want to continuously bum people out on a daily basis. I would completely understand if any of you would like to hide my stuff from your page. Not that you need me to tell you this..
Landon is not adjusting to formula at all. I feel bad for the little fellow. He is getting bigger..he has breast milk jaundice, so they wanted her to take him off for a couple of days.
Rylan is going to North Dakota for a month to be with his Dad. Landria is planning to move to Las Vegas. Life is ever changing.
Eli is not enjoying track..he keeps hurting himself, and I think it is harder on the body than swimming. I remember having shin splints every season.
I am having a difficult time going to work, as I am just so sad…I hate trying to act as if..it takes a lot of energy, but I am doing it anyway..at least to the best of my ability. I am getting caught up..will take a while, but I have been doing my job for almost 4 years, so it comes naturally. I hope everyone has a good blustery day. It is March, but it still seems like Winter.
One of my best friends is coming to stay the night this weekend. We went to beauty school together..we used to have so much fun together. We went to Mexico with my grandma and her friend…we drove them crazy. 🙂 She and I have reconnected through all of this, and it has helped, as she is a positive person, who I have a lot of history with. Thank you Michelle! I am also grateful for all my friends who have been here through thick and thin for the last several years. It has been quite a journey..one never knows what is around the corner.
More later…

March 6, 2012

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My first day back to work was better than I anticipated. I have a lot of paper work to catch up on. They did really well with organizing my piles so I could tell what needed to be done. I am so sad with moving forward..it seems like it means that I am leaving Alex behind. I know that people may think that I’m not, but it sure feels that way. I think that is why it is so natural to struggle with getting stuck in grief..it almost feels like that is the only thing that may keep the connection alive. I experienced this with my mom. I had to work really hard for several years in order to feel safe enough to let more of my grief evolve, and trust that I would still be connected to her without that pain. I also have had to not feel guilty about surviving longer in life and having a different type of life. I just don’t know how to quite make sense of the loss of Alex. There doesn’t seem to be anything good about it. Was she spared from something more horrific in her future than this? I don’t believe God orchestrated any of this. I believe He protected her and us through all of this. But I am not so sure I believe everything happens for a reason. I believe that is a saying people say to either make themselves feel better about an unacceptable situation or Hope that there is a reason somewhere out the fourth dimension to explain why these senseless, painful tragic thing happen to people. So many people loose their children..some loose more than one in a lifetime. I have read so many people’s stories about their children who have died. It is an unnatural phenomenon. It creates more heartbreak and uproots ones entire belief system, only to have to find some way to find a new belief system that makes sense in a new dimension that is almost unrecognizable. Who I am now is not the same..I do not see life or even God in the same way. I have some work to do with my feelings toward God. I am just so upset with him..I haven’t given up on Him, and I do believe He is taking care of Alex. I am just not entirely positive what He is doing with any of us, and wish he would have made it possible for her to stay with us and also be a semblance of who she was prior to the accident. I haven’t posted any pictures of the service until today. I was reluctant to do so..not sure how I feel about it now. I love finding new photos..thank you to everyone who finds pictures they have of Alex who send them to me or post them.
More later…