Friday, August 30, 2013

Embrace your shadow

This is the last day of the first week of Kindergarten.  Can I get a "What What" from all the new Kinder moms!?!?  
I feel like I'm crawling across a hurdle at the finish line, dreaming of pizza and a movie at home tonight, staying in my bed till at least 7am, and letting Daniel make pancakes in the morning.
Will this schedule ever feel normal?!?!  

I. am. not. a. morning. person.  I am a night owl.  I work at night, I'm creative at night, I get things done at night; I stay up late.  I watch Jimmy Fallon for crying out loud.  I'm only 30!  (ahh hmm, ok 32.)

I questioned a fellow walking mom (or should I say trench-mate?!) this morning on the way at exactly 7:36am.  She had a child a couple years older and looked like maybe a little more wisdom than I, so I said, "Does this ever get easier?!?"  She turned to me and I saw her tired eyes, frazzled hair and just-rolled-out-of-bed wrinkled sweat shorts.  (To be fair, I looked the same... I just had a baseball hat & big sunnies on!)  "No," she replied.  "It doesn't."  Then scrambling for hope I said, "Well, does the pick-up line at least get better in the afternoon?"  And even more assertively she looked me in the eyes and replied, "No!  It does not."

She walked on ahead of us and I saw her hug & squeeze her sweet daughter, telling her to have a good day and it seemed like nothing she'd said moments before really mattered.  We entered the school, I followed Ryder to his class (although he says he's got it now and doesn't need me to walk him to his room).  I watched him put his stuff in his locker and Paisley and I headed home.  

On the way back she begged to stop at the playground and I begged to go home and drink more coffee.  We walked hand in hand looking at our shadows again as we've done the past few days.
I was staring at my shadow, in my head criticizing the size and shape of my hips, thinking about spin class in a few hours when Paisley broke the silence with, "I don't want my shadow!  I want yours!  It's bigger!"  I laughed at the irony of the moment.  

I wanted a slimmer shadow and she wanted a bigger one.
Without thinking I said, "Well you can't change your shadow.  It's exactly who you are and where you are standing in the sun right now."

It's true.  I remember being little and wanting to be older & bigger.  I remember being in high school and dreaming of college.  I remember being in college and wanting it to be done.  I remember being young married and wanting to be a mommy.  Now we reminisce of the days before kids when we didn't have bags under our eyes and could eat dinner at 9pm if we wanted.  As we crawled into bed the other night Daniel said something to the effect of how we USED to be cool... "hey there were days when we would just be heading out for the night at this time..."  

What I wanted to say to Paisley (and to myself) this morning was, "Embrace your shadow sister!"  
Not just your size (I won't go into one of those blogs...  Women, your daughters do not need to hear you criticize your body... just search pinterest for a blog on that! LOL.  Not my topic.)

But where you are in life.  I don't wanna wish away these day of Kindergarten.  The other night I said something like, "another day down... 18 more years to go..."  But I regretted the words the moment they left my mouth.  They seemed so hostile and ungrateful in light of the past year.  

As much as it pains me to mess with 'my' schedule.  I yearn to have the strength to embrace my shadow.  It's not my past, and not my future.  But it's exactly where the sun is shinning right now.  

I wanna be all there.  Even if it is at 5:45 in the morning with a little boy that's "too excited about school" that he just can't sleep.  

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Celebrating G

Thank you so much for all the love, support & sweet words over the past week.  We had a good last week celebrating Gibson.  It was exactly what we needed.  

Wednesday we awoke to celebrate the day.  My dad was here to be with us and the kids and I had some errands to run, a friend from church came and gave me an amazing massage (!) and we made cupcakes for the night.  

Wednesday night we celebrated with friends who put together a lovely dinner.  I wanted us to be with friends and knew our family wouldn't be able to make it to the mid-week get together.  And like I said in the last blog I wanted us to really celebrate the year that G changed our lives.  We wanted to be together with some of the friends who've really helped carry us through the last year.  At one point in the night Daniel thanked everyone and said something I couldn't put into words... He said how we know as Christians and as the church we are to be the "hands & feet" of Christ, and just how much we'd learned and experienced that through those around us this year.  How we've learned what that truly meant.  
That is what we celebrated.  
On the patio at sunset- with lots of friends {even more kids than adults running around!} & lots of food.  We celebrated that with music, tears, words of encouragement, hope, strength & love.
{God's Grace}

Before we headed out for the night we gave the kids a little gift.  I ordered these sweet little key necklaces from an etsy shop.  They were so cute about them and Ryder's insisted on wearing his almost every day since.  

After dinner we headed out to release lanterns.  The kids were SO looking forward to it (and I was too)...  Well, a windy Texas night and huge flames... and maybe the not so perfect suburbia location did not bode well for the lantern release!  After a joint effort try we decided that was not the wise choice to release them there and then.  
Carrie wrote these sweet words about the night.  And I stole her pics below...

 Ryder cried & cried.  But we told him we'd do it another time and place.  When we got home Daddy came to the rescue with some (old leftover!) sparklers! :)
 It was a good night.  
We went to bed with hearts {again} full of gratitude in the midst of what could have been a horribly painful day.  So thank you all.  

Saturday was Race day!!! :)
I talked about the 5k and the meaning in the last blog - so I figured I better have proof!  
It was HOT and crazy with color!  We had to take some breathers from the heat & walk a bit, but we did it.  So proud to have these girls with me every step of the way.  Was so amazing to see "Team Gibson" running in front of me and hear people yell "Go team Gibson," behind me!  
Getting ready to go...
Matthew & Warren joined Team Gibson too! ;)

 And we're off!

My biggest fan ;)
My littlest fans... they were not exactly happy at this point.  Hot & over it! haha.
The group.
 The girls!!!
Christy, Kristin E., Me, Ashley, Kristin L.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

One Year

Today we will celebrate The Year That Gibson Changed Our Lives.

A year ago today was the most terrifying and yet one of the most joyous days of our lives.  
As we welcomed Gibson into a world that wasn't quite ready for him we chose joy because of the crazy treacherous waters we'd walked through to get there.  At that moment the sight of his tiny sweet face was beyond anything we'd ever experienced before.  
And we were hopeful yet fearful of the days to come.  

This week has been a milestone I've both dreaded and looked forward to.  It's the pain of remembering each detail and the hurt of my heart longing for that sweet one year old baby boy... meanwhile the peace we find in crossing the finish line with this year behind us.  
Nothing will change in a day, but it is another step in the walk of healing.  

I hate to run. I've hated to run since the first time in 5th grade I was forced to run around the asphalt track at florence black elementary.  Then to the beginning of tennis in 8th grade when coach sutton made me run the white lines of the court... it just got worse.  

In January I started running. Confession: I would go in the cold, dark cardio theater at the Y and run and ball my eyes out. One because it hurt; two because it was healing me. For something I'd always hated, I had a strange determination to conquer it, and it was somehow oddly therapeutic.  Like painting... but that's a whole other chapter of my book! ;)

When I started running my c-section area still hurt. With every step I could feel the pain of that precious child I bore; that sweet baby boy that was missing from my womb & my life. But somehow as the pain subsided in running, the daily walk through grief grew easier as well.

Saturday I will {try to!}  run my first 5k - something I swore I'd never do. I've always held to the opinion that running a 'race' was about the dumbest thing a person could willfully do. I go by the ecard that says, "if you see me running you better call the cops..."
But I'm doing this 5k this weekend because it was part of my healing. It was something to work toward... and conquer.  Something to do with friends on the milestone week of G's birthday- friends who've helped me conquer a lot of things I didn't think I could face this year.  

But I did. We did.

Gibson taught us so much about what we could conquer and walk through.  Before the moment he arrived, through the tender moments of the 108 days we had with him, and the many days we've walked through since- about ourselves, each other, those around us and most importantly about God.

Some days I find myself falling into the trap of guilt, of questions, of "what ifs."  But really I wouldn't trade what we went through this year.  As painful as much of it was, it was a journey God had for us and it's made us all a little bit more of who He intended us to be.

As I wrote one of those sentences in the first paragraph today I realized it's even more true now:  We choose JOY because of the treacherous waters we've walked through to get here.  We STILL choose thankfulness because we really truly are thankful for the year God has given us and carried us through.  And for all the people he's placed next to us to pick us up when we couldn't (or didn't want to) keep going.    

How one little baby & his less than 4 month on earth could change a lifetime of 'us' is beyond me, but that's how God's love works.  It's not a measure of time.  I mentioned to someone last week that we were anticipating the milestone of Gibson's Birthday and they very calmly said, "A life is not really truly measured by the time lived."

HAPPY BIRTHDAY sweet boy. I hope you are having a GLORIOUS heavenly birthday. A party beyond anything this party-planning momma could imagine.

We love you with all our hearts.