Saturday, December 31, 2022

Let's go

 I've been thinking... a bunch. My considerations these past few days have been a blur of so many things, and it's really quite a jumble even inside my head, but I still feel the need to write, to record for my boys so that they remember. It's the details that we shelve (out of necessity, mostly) and forget as our hearts and minds age and juggle the stuff of life. 

I got a nose diamond. I know about half of my readers will highly disapprove, but it is something I've wanted since I was a freshman in college and I'm very happy I did it. A dear friend of mine gave me a gift card for it and it was just the catalyst I needed to make the jump. My boys all love it and that is good enough for me! 💃 

Lochlan is obsessed with Paddington. All things Paddington. The books, the movies, the audio books, the stuffed animals, just all of it. He spends copious hours drawing Paddington. That silly bear and his vacuum are usually frequent subjects in those drawings. In one of the movies, Paddington does some pretty fancy spy moves with his vacuum cleaner. Tonight, Lochlan spent over 2 hours looking up and watching vacuum reviews. 😂

The past couple of months have been grueling, for many reasons. I have felt the strain on my boys as my attention/time has been divided doing what my days absolutely require of me, trying to process the impossible and simultaneously wrestling with the guilt of what I can't do/be for them. Instead of expressing their frustrations with me, they have worked together to help clean up our house when I'm cleaning the Airbnbs, made dinner when they see my fatigue, taken turns cleaning the kitchen after dinners, entertained Lochlan when he's being a grizzly bear, and written me notes almost daily, encouraging me and quite honestly putting the wind into my sails. 

Madigan and Kelton both have some kind of trauma from this past year. They cannot sleep if the wind is blowing, or if it is raining hard. They lie awake in a state of near-panic. I usually move them to the couch and put the Bose Speaker between them and turn on some kind of white noise to help drown out the sounds. Last night Madigan still couldn't sleep because he could hear the wind rattling the foam insulation we have in our broken window, so he put in some earplugs and was eventually able to sleep. It makes for some long nights because our weather has been stormy and wintry for many days. I keep praying that time will heal this trauma. 

We've been reading The Count of Monte Cristo and it has been so poignant in many places: 

  • Life is a storm, my young friend. You will bask in the sunlight one moment, be shattered on the rocks the next. What makes you a man is what you do when the storm comes.
  • All human wisdom is contained in these two words -- wait and hope.
  • It is the privilege of youth to believe and hope, but old men see death more clearly. 

I've had a headache for 9 weeks. I've slept less than 5 hours/night for over 9 weeks because Lochlan does not sleep anymore. I have felt this pressure in my head which comes from a severe lack of sleep; it's fatigue that rests itself squarely over my eyes and into my temples. Last night Lochlan finally slept and I was able to sleep for 9 hours! When I awoke, the pressure had dissipated. I kept waiting for it to creep back in today, but it has not. Sleep is like a miracle. 

We have been surrounded by such a beautiful community and I am deeply grateful. I almost never go to town without running into someone I know and love and it's the conversations at the end of the road, the chance encounters in the grocery store, the friendly honk of the horn and wave of a neighbor when I'm in the fields/yard working... these things I treasure in my heart. 

Our neighborhood is lit up with Christmas lights this year and it makes the heart merry. What a beautiful thing to see a community, hounded by fire, water, mud and destruction, stand up in the merriest of seasons and light their houses up in a final act of defiance against the havoc of the year 2022.  I walked the neighborhood in the dark last night underneath a moonlit sky and it brought me so much joy. 

My boys are incredibly funny. Almost constantly. Declan never stops making puns. It's constant PUNishment for the rest of us. Madigan canters around the house making noise - just so much noise. He builds so many magnificent Lego creations, and each of those creations has it's own special noise. Each of his stuffed animals has a unique voice too. Kelton is D.R.A.M.A. He's an incredible actor and entertains us almost constantly with his antics. He is passionate and enthusiastic - a compelling combination for the entertainer of the family. Lochlan - well, Lochlan loves vacuums. 

As a general observation, grief seems to run a parallel course to life.  Sometimes life and grief intersect, and once they intersect, grief lurks for the remainder of the journey. Sometimes it may even alter our entire trajectory as a whole, for good or for ill. I think experiencing grief helps us to understand life and perhaps even live it more fully. The simple things can become more profound, it can give us the ability to see and understand others, it can break us and help us to heal back more beautifully. 

Tomorrow is the start of a new year. I have no expectations that this new year will somehow be full of colorful horizons and lustrous tomorrows. After all, it's just tomorrow. It is another day to rise, do the next thing and make the absolute most of the time we are given. It is a day to hope. I am excited because it is tomorrow, not because it is a new year that is sure to be filled with everything that 2022 was not. 


Anonymous said...

Love broke through on that last glorious photo on your mountain. Praise God evidences of His love are startlingly beautiful and at other times simply in the everyday living of life, we catch glimpses of His divine intervention and blessings, always there if we have eyes to see them.

Anonymous said...

One of the neighbors drove by, stopped at Devany and gave her a treat and then waved and called "Merry Christmas" out to me as I was walking between the aframe and the round house. It was a sweet testament to how much you all are loved, including the furry ones.