Sometimes.. this doesn’t seem fair.. or real… or possible.. or survivable.
Tomorrow is Easter .. technically our second holiday since she has been gone.. but Valentines day.. 2 days after she died..I just don’t count it. Our boys had fun last night with cousins dying eggs. But it was hard also. Jonathan came home full.. as soon as I opened the door I could feel it..
. . .the charge of his emotions. Not a sad .. or angry..just intensity. We played and hugged a lot today. I watched him struggle so hard to sort out what he was going through… with no understanding of what was happening. Getting so mad at little things.. but working at keeping it in check. We were hitting balls from one room to the next and then suddenly he hit the ground with her pink strawberry shortcake bat.. he liked it.. so he did it harder.. and harder.
I wanted to let it play out.. but it wasn’t the right venue.. so we offered for him to “boom it” in the garage. Tony has a speed bag set up that he wails on when he needs to. We have been trying to encourage Jonathan to find a way like that to get it out. So today my big guys set out to find a solution ..they built a way for him to reach the bag all by himself… guy therapy.. seeing a problem and fixing it.. with their hands.. and of course “booming”
It seemed to help.
…sometimes I just want to float away…away from the heartache…my own and theirs…
I had forgotten how much my kids like playing with bubbles.. blowing… chasing.. popping
and a new one…recognition.
Nicholas and I were doing bubbles in the backyard yesterday. It was Charlotte’s first time seeing bubbles. The way she reacted and looked at them.. I found myself wondering if that’s how Jennifer appears to her. We were out there again today.. just the 3 of us. And she had that same look on her face.. but today she wanted to go after them as they were floating around. Nicholas found one of the bubble wands we had recently been given for Jennifer (we could tell because it was pink) those bubbles didn’t pop the same.. they stuck around and when the popped it still stayed on you.
I called Jonathan out to come see.. I thought it was the bubble solution but he showed me his that was the same kind (but blue) and they popped like normal bubbles.. so we decided it was because it was sissy’s bubble wand.
While we were out there I played some music. Thousand years came on…I sang and I cried. I wished for the winter again. Because she was still here.. and because it was easier to be so sad with dark and overcast.. with the spring comes new life…
while I am grieving the loss of hers..
it almost feels like the sun is taunting me. . .The blooms on the trees showing off and rubbing it in my face. I want the bare.. and the cold and the dark.
.. sometimes I just want to be a grieving mother..
Advocacy and grief often seem to go hand in hand.. but like all things in life there is a trade off. .. .
This morning after my run I met with a couple about designing a new website.. one for our after plans.. to Unravel Pediatric Cancer. I liked them… felt confident in their abilities and mostly that they care about me and our goals.. I got home and jumped on the computer.. sending emails… posting on FB and doing a little research.
I was somewhere else.. totally disconnected from my reality.. just going and doing. There is a lot about that I like. The distance between me and the loss.. to be so cerebral about it all that the pain cannot penetrate…
there is a cost though.
there is more to my reality than just her death. ..
though it colors everything..or rather drains everything of its color.
As I was posting on FB I saw a picture somebody posted of peep nests they had made.. The same thing we did last year. I usually bake with the kids for every holiday. Plan special foods to celebrate.. simple cheap things to add a little something magical to their day.
I had nothing set up.. nothing arranged for my surviving kids… nothing to tell them how important they are. Not being the mom I want to be for them. Remembering the peep nests, which I had totally forgotten about, made me remember the paper egg hunt. 2 years ago I started a tradition of making paper eggs that they decorate and then I hide … Ya know a little practice before the big day with cousins.. and just a easy, fun tradition. I had kept meaning to do it with the boys.. but would get sidetracked.
**this was my no into a yes.. bubbles for Nicholas.. and for me, the “no” I didn’t do it, turned into a “yes I will right now” **
I cut out the eggs and got stickers and dot art out and let the boys decorate. They enjoyed it. We aren’t a particularly crafty bunch … I was pleasantly surprised how into decorating our paper eggs they both were… proud of their creations. Jonathan’s with just the right amount of color and Nicholas with as many stickers as possible piled high. .
Then after bath while they got in jammies.. halloween and christmas ones.. Tony and I hid the newly hatched eggs. They had a great time looking for them. Jonathan cheering when he found them… Nicholas being so confused picking up everything but the eggs.. when I finally pointed one out, he picked it up and threw it down thinking I was just being a jokester. ..
eventually working together to get a particularly tricky one. .. the second to last one.
The final egg.. one that wasn’t hidden very well at all.. a purple one with pink stickers Jonathan had made for Jennifer.
moments… ones I am trying to turn into good memories for them..
That’s what is so hard for me… If I was just a grieving mom.. solely focused on that I would have prepped activities to do with them.. Tony reminded me that I did get it done.. not the way I would have normally..ahead of time.. planned out. It’s still hard for me to let go of what I would have done.. what a piece of me feels I should have done. I would have thought and remembered and took the time..
I would connect better with my 3 living..
but then what about her?
I don’t do this for her.. its all for me.. but it connects me to her. Doing.. well whatever it is I am doing and end up doing as my role in the fight against childhood cancer.. it somehow solidifies us for me. It’s our mother/daughter bonding time.
I chose it. I want it. I don’t have to do it.
I need to.
But sometimes .. like on days like today.. I think about how much easier it would be to not have that drive and desire.. the compulsion to do something.
To just grieve. Cry. Remember.
To only have a to do list filled with things for my family… things to memorialize her.. or .. focus totally on our little Kranz family needs. …or.
.well now as I sit here. Checking off the top of both my Unravel and Kranz to do list (blogging) I realize why maybe it’s better for me that I have something else.
Right now I am solely focused on being a grieving mama. Consumed.
.. I am drowning. Reeling in it.. .
I am writing now staring at these 3 little baskets.. there should be 4.. its such a silly insignifigant thing.. easter baskets.. another mom pressure we put on ourselves.. something I have tried hard not to get wrapped up in.. but all I want right now is that 4th basket.
I just remembered exactly what I would have put in it. A live butterfly kit. The kids got one 2 yrs ago. We raised caterpillars and learned about their life cycle… she loved checking in on them everyday looking to see if they had changed.. if they had come out of their cocoons yet.
Eventually they did and we released butterflies. Both my J’s wanted a butterfly to land on them… ok I wanted one on me too. But they weren’t having any of it. They were just taking off.. except for the one that landed on Jennifer’s hand. .. Middle of the day in princess jammies. with a headband in the middle of her forehead…true Jennifer. ..That moment is why we did a butterfly release with my family immediatly after her services.. before the reception.To honor that memory..
That day though.. every little kid got a butterfly to stay on their hand before flying away.. every. single . one. And we have lots of nephews and nieces..
.. . ohh yea.. That’s what she would have had this year.. because this past summer she asked for butterflies again. And I told her we could write the Easter Bunny a note..
oh my god.
I already bought it. I went online and bought the kit then..
Did you know I did that?
Oh Jennifer are you leading me through my own words?
I’ll go look for it baby girl. I think the kids will love it.
*** sometimes…sissy miss.. sometimes***