We were the closest family possible. Our world was turned upside down on 05/03/09 when my best friend, the person I love most next only to our children, my sister Trina was diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer. Her body gave out on her on 01/09/10 but she will ALWAYS be a part of our daily life and will continue to be in my posts. I started my blog to chronicle our daughter's international adoption from Guatemala and have continued to use it as a journal.

What you will find is my family trying to adapt to our new lives that were handed to us.



Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Broken Hearts

Valentina was asking about sissy earlier this evening. Mom and I talked about Trina  and asked Valentina what she remembered about TT. It was heartbreaking to hear Valentina talk mostly about the week that Trina died, of when she shaved her head when her hair started falling out, of how she ate the fruit cup at sissy's hospital bedside. All of her memories are of sissy after cancer.

After talking for about 20 minutes Valentina went and watched some tv in the family room, unknowingly leaving behind nothing but emotional wreckage in the living room with mom and me. Mom simply said "my heart is bleeding." I, on the other hand, used a different analogy to describe my heart. I told mom that I envisioned it to be surrounded by various, ill fitting metal pieces, all screwed shut in a somewhat Frankenstein fashion but not sealing my heart, letting bits and pieces of emotion out, something I fight with all my might against. I hate to cry. I hate to feel. I hate to grieve. I hate to miss. But no matter how much metal I try to shield my heart with there are leaks and gaps.

"The sky is ripped open
and the rain pours through a gaping wound
pelting the women and children
pelting the women and children
Run
They run"

- U2 "Bullet The Blue Sky"

Mom and I see our wounds so differently but the end result is the same.

Our hearts are irretrievably broken.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

26 Months

Today is 26 months since we buried sissy. THAT is the most shocking of all. To think that she's so close and yet impossibly far away. I have never been to the cemetery since her service. For some reason I find it a tiny bit less horrifying to word it that way, her service vs. her funeral. Funeral is so final, so abrupt, so DEATH. Service is something that means many other things. Funeral cannot. There is only one definition of funeral but many definitions of service.

Norm woke me up in the middle of the night a few nights ago, he said I was talking in my sleep. I have a tendency to talk in my sleep but I don't remember it and rarely do I wake up Norm doing it since he snores horribly and has severe sleep apnea. But somehow I woke him up. I asked him what I was saying. He told me I was talking to my sister. I hesitated for a split second but then wanted to know what I was saying. I had a vague, swirling memory of a dream with her so I wanted to know if I heard the words I was saying would bring the dream to the forefront of my memory. I wish I hadn't asked.

Norm said I was saying "I love you. I miss you sissy. Please come back to me."

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

First, the good. I sold our extra, extra vehicle!!! We had a 1993 4Runner that had been sitting for a while. I have my car, Norm has his truck which he rarely uses because he has a company vehicle and then we had the 4Runner. We had just been letting it sit for about a year because Norm didn't bother to do anything with it and I didn't have the emotional time to try to sell it. A few months ago I put it up on craigslist, a few bites, holidays came, the listing expired and I just let it go. Then I decided we needed to get rid of it, I was tired of dicking around and just wanted it gone. I started actively trying to sell it, even going as far as to create a web site for it to direct people to look at from the craigslist posting. Again, I had a few bites but nothing more. Given as I had worked in marketing when I was working in insurance I had a few tricks up my sleeve.  Little did I know that what it finally took was laying everything out there and getting the right person to see the ad. I sold it today at a very fair price to a really nice family guy. I'm so happy!

Next, the bad. Mom says I'm cycling a bit, bipolar wise. This month has really taken it out of me. I don't know why but it has. I'm just in an episode and I know it will pass and soon things will go back to the normal amount of shit instead of the overwhelming amount of shit I feel. Although there are a few variables that I have a feeling will be getting worse shortly.

Finally, the ugly.

Bipolar sucks. There are certain noises that drive me up the wall and make me want to crawl out of my skin. I've looked them up and it turns out they are very common in bipolar people. I've described it to my psychiatrist as everything is amplified. If there's one sound in the house I hear it as five. If there's a conversation going on in the background between the kids and my parents are talking it sounds like there's 50 people talking. The ironic thing is, at the same time all I hear is silence because I don't hear sissy. She talked more than any of us.

I took a mental health test and it came back that my biggest problem was acute anxiety. Duh. Yet another example of I knew it but it's a completely different thing to see it on paper. "Acute anxiety disorder".

I started watching the first episode of "Awake" over the weekend. For those of you that don't know about it, it's a tv show about a detective who was in a car accident with his wife and son. He's living two realities, one where his wife died and his son lived and then he'll wake up and his son died and his wife is alive. He is aware that he's going back and forth and doesn't know which is the dream and which is real. I got about 15-20 minutes into and deleted it. I live in denial in my own reality, I don't need to watch it on tv. Besides, if I were writing the show I'd write it that both lives were dreams and he really wakes up to the fact that both his  wife and son died and he can't face that he lost both of them so instead he disconnects and tries to handle the loss of one of them at a time. But that's just me, what do I know? I only have dissociation disorder. But it's not pathological so it isn't harmful.

I'm also sick again. I swear my immune system is completely non-existent. I'm too busy fleeing from my reality that all of my energy goes into that leaving me with very little left. I've always known that the trifecta of eating too much sugar, lack of sleep and extreme stress will make me sick. It's been that way for years. Before I had my ambien I would go for days existing on only 2-3 hours of sleep. There would be times Norm would be getting up for work and I still hadn't gone to bed. Insomnia has always been a problem of mine. Ambien has made sure I get sleep. The extreme stress is inescapable. The sugar part is my own damn fault, that is the only variable that I can control and Saturday I ate a whole box of Skittles.

Which brings me to the good again.

Last week Asa's class had a green eggs and ham breakfast at school and I went. I love doing those things with him and I love his teacher. I hate eggs and I don't eat ham unless it's in the bacon form so I basically just sat next to Asa and had fun with him. There was a local restaurant that hosted it and they raffled three $25 gift certificates. Asa and I won one!!! We were so surprised and happy! We had to walk up to the front and get it from the principal. Asa was smiling ear to ear. Beya and Papa had planned on going to the cabin this past weekend so I wanted to take the kids to lunch and a movie Saturday so the gift certificate certainly helped! Even so lunch for the 4 of us was $40-50. Then tickets to the movie were another $35. Concessions (which is where my box of Skittles came from) was another $40. But it was all worth it as it was a nice family outing. We saw "The Lorax" but Valentina calls it by it's full name, "Dr. Seuss' The Lorax". She says it all as one word so it's "Dr.Seuss'TheLorax". If she sees anything on TV that shows the Lorax she says "look! It's Dr.Seuss'TheLorax!"

After scrolling through this post I am tempted to just delete the whole thing as I know it sounds so negative and dark and twisty Meredith Grey. But I'm keeping it as I always got upset when sissy would write a post and then delete it. Besides, as the post implies, this is the good, the bad and the ugly.

Right now I have all three in my life.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

I Hate

I hate the fact that I miss my sister.

I hate that in my head I have imaginary conversations with her instead of the real ones we should be having.

I hate that I will think of something as a year or two ago but in reality I have the ruler of "was that before or after she died?"

I hate that 26 months ago she died.

I hate the 9th of the month.

I hate the 2nd of the month.

I hate the 15th of the month.

I hate the rest of the month.

I hate that 34 months ago she was diagnosed with cancer and given 2-3 years to live.

I hate that she died eight months later.

I hate that Asa doesn't have his mom.

I hate that Valentina is so clingy with me in some part because she knows that I could die at any time. She saw it happen with Asa's mom.

I hate it that sissy isn't here to talk about her Vali.

I hate that I can't take Asa's side of things as an aunt and spoil him.

I hate that every time I see a Chevy Blazer for a split second I wonder why sissy is out running errands without me.

I hate that I take the long way to the store to avoid driving past her house.

I hate that I have to avert my eyes when I see the "sister" greeting cards.

I hate that I don't have sissy to vent to.

I hate that I can't call her.

I hate that she isn't here to talk me into buying stuff that I don't need.

I hate that I can't listen to her laugh.

I hate that I can't listen to her complain how tired she is.

I hate that I miss her phone calls and then keep getting a busy signal when I call her back because we're both calling each other at the same time.

I hate that I can't gossip to her.

I hate that I can't gang up on mom with her.

I hate that we have missed countless adventures together.

I hate that I can't ever go to a spa again.

I hate that I get eye rolls from my husband about not being able to do something because it hurts too much and he thinks I "should be over it."

I hate that I can't listen to the radio because I never know when a song will come on that will bring all sorts of memories and emotions of us.

I hate that mom has lost her oldest daughter.

I hate that at one point I will become older than my sister.

I hate that my sister is gone.


Tuesday, March 06, 2012

An Education

First off I must say how much I love Ellen DeGeneres. Mom and I watch her every day and she never fails to make us laugh. She is so funny, kind, and just an all around good person.

Second, I'm giving Asa an education in U2.

I've had "Achutung Baby" in my CD player and we listen to it during the two minute drive to school. I told him this morning that I was schooling him in all ways U2.

Asa - No sissy! I won't do good on it.

Me - Asa, there is no test, I'm just teaching you about U2.

Asa - Oh. Ok.

Me - Asa, this is one of their best songs ever to see live.

Asa - I thought you said the other song was the best song ever.

(This shows he's listening to what I taught him last week)

Me - Yes, that was "Ultraviolet". That and "One" are their best songs ever. But this is one of their best songs LIVE. This one is "The Fly". Actually both "Ultraviolet" and "The Fly" are great live but they built an entire tour around this song!

Asa - Where?

Me - When they toured.

Asa - But where?

Me - They went all around the WORLD!

Asa - (mouth dropped open)

And then we got to school.

I don't have a lot of time to teach him but by the end of the school year he should know the whole CD :)

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Never ending

This grief and sadness and disbelief of what has happened never ends. Mom asked me if I ever feel like I take two steps forward and then get hit with five steps back. I explained to her that I feel more like when I think I'm doing somewhat ok I realize I'm just in denial and then something happens and I get slapped with reality and retreat even more into my disconnect.

The first half of every month is always so draining. It never stops. Every damn month I relive each day until the 15th. And then the second half of the month I try to deny the fact that my sister is gone forever. That I no longer have my person. Then a new month starts and I'm back at the top of the vicious, never ending circle. Norm and I used to have a saying, "I love you infinity z'd" which the z'd meant more than infinity squared. Our wedding bands are even engraved with the infinity symbol.

I never thought that an infinity symbol would conjure up so many other things. Of course it's a major part of my guilty pleasure, "Revenge" but it's also my emotions.

Grief infinity z'd.