Wednesday, December 12, 2012


 Because I like little things like repeat date days, and mileage on odometers like 55,555 I am going to post in honor of 12/12/12.

And because you never thought it possible, I will make 12 statements in 12 words. I'm pretty sure this will be the hardest blog I've ever written.

1) Today I accidentally replied "You're problem" to a customer's "Thank you". oops.

2) I am starting a company. I'm researching, planning, brainstorming, and getting excited!

3) Teaching Primary is still terrifying. Knowing nothing about music is helpful. Not.

4) I sold a coffee table because I stubbed my toe on it.

5) #Thisisthemostannoyingthingpeopledoonline #Pleasestopit

6) When I hear people whine about marriage, I am so grateful for Lucas.

7)  I'm pretty bummed we have yet to roast marshmallows in our fireplace.

8) I can't handle the sound of people chewing and swallowing their food.

9) I think the people I miss would be surprised to know it.

10) Dessert in our house right now is usually graham crackers with milk.

11) I miss keeping a dream journal. I'm going to do it again.

12) I frequently look for jobs in Hawaii, just in case. Maybe Someday.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Kellen's First Birthday

Kellen's Birthday was on November 12th. Time has slipped through my fingers. It is amazing to me how a year can pass so quickly, but at the same time feel like ages ago.

We moved to Colorado just 2 months after we lost him. I had boxed up his stuff with the intention of getting it out again just two months later. However, losing a loved one is expensive. Moving is expensive. Colorado is more expensive than we remembered.  We ended up living with Lucas' parents for 7 months. Then we unpacked at our new apartment, and when I saw the box marked "Molly and Kellen" I couldn't face it. I put Molly's memory book away, and put the box of their things on a shelf in the closet. And life got busy.  It was easier to live life than it was to go back into that box where feelings and memories were sure to be fresh. In that box is where my sorrow was packed away prematurely.

A couple weeks before his birthday, I started feeling guilty that I haven't made his memory book yet. I had Molly's finished a few months before her first birthday and I hadn't even started Kellen's. I read their stories one night after Lucas fell asleep. At first it was like I was reading someone else's story, but as I kept reading and suddenly I was back there. I was in the hospital. I remembered all the details and the pain and the peace and the fear and the love. I cried all night.

Usually, I don't cry over the babies more than once in a few months or so. I will have a hard day, and then I feel refreshed in a way. Like I faced something difficult and I feel more empowered to be strong. So when Kellen's birthday arrived so soon after a night like when I read their stories, I wasn't surprised when I was feeling less sadness than usual. I was feeling, for the most part, like celebrating. I wanted to celebrate that he ever came to our family. I wanted to celebrate the seven months I carried him. I felt happy. I opened this beautiful birthday gift one of my greatest friends gave us to honor Kellen's birthday (Isn't it perfect?!):

So it was with no trepidation, but rather a sense of celebration, that I finally pulled down the box labelled "Molly and Kellen". I opened it, sure it would be the clothing I dreamed of them wearing, the precious gifts from friends and family, and some sympathy cards. For some reason, I had completely forgotten what I ever packed in that box.

I pulled strip of moving tape off the box, Lucas in the other room. I opened the box and looked inside. There was a sweater my mother in law gave for Molly. I loved it too much to pack it away. It was Molly's sweater from the first second I saw it and so I kept it. I held it up and imagined her in it. Then I folded it and set it on the bed and looked back in the box.

And suddenly I was bawling.
One second I was smiling and feeling happy and full of love, and literally one second later I could see nothing, gigantic tears were falling down my face. I was weeping, in my hands I gently cradled the little blue robe that once held my son. It was the robe he wore when we held him. The robe he is wearing in all his pictures. Seeing and picking up that little empty robe brought with it an instant tidal wave of grief.

Lucas heard and probably felt the change and came running into the room to check on me. He saw me bawling and ran over to me, placing his arm around me. "Honey, are you okay?!" I looked at him, still bawling and held up the robe.
"I had forgotten. I didn't remember we still had this. It's his. It's Kellen's robe. I'm so glad we still have it. But I didn't expect to see it in here. I just, I wasn't prepared" He hugged me and kissed my cheek. I calmed down a little and we kept going though the box.

Inside we found Kellen's tiny ankle bracelet from the hospital. A lock of his hair. His tiny little hat. His hand and footprints. The blanket we wrapped him in the day we spent with him. I cried of course, but felt more together with Lucas in the room with me. I felt better. I continued to tear up as I looked at his things and remembered him, but felt almost healed. I finally faced the grief I hid away in that box.

Later in the evening we met Lucas' family and my mom and brother at the cemetery.  When we arrived there were two stuffed animals at my babies memorials. A Pooh Bear for Molly and a giant Clifford for Kellen. I had no idea who brought them but, of course, I was so touched I cried more. I cry a lot. (Later we discovered that the gifts were brought by one of Lucas' clients. Lucas had shared with him our story, and every time that client came to visit his recently passed son he also visited our babies. When I learned that my heart melted. I am so touched)

We brought Kellen some birthday flowers. When everyone arrived we all talked and then we took a notepad and we each wrote him a letter. We rolled our letters up in tiny scrolls and tied them to the balloons.

All together we released our letters and sent them to Kellen. Watching the balloons was really beautiful. I felt peaceful and happy. After the balloon release we all went back to our apartment where we ate a birthday cake and visited more. It was a good day to think of our adorable baby boy.

His birthday was perfect, with moments to miss him and moments to celebrate him.

We love you Kellen, and we miss you every second of every day!

Saturday, December 8, 2012


Remember how I used to know how to blog?
I miss that.

Here's an embarrassing story about "missing" just to get things rolling again...

I had a crush on a friend of mine in High School. I was two years behind him in school and met him through the wrestling team. I was a wrestling manager. In my mind he was the dream guy. He was the popular attractive senior and I was the scrawny, awkward, late-blooming, gap-toothed sophomore. I remember being surprised every time he spoke to me.  If I walked into a crowded room, say a pep assembly or a wrestling tournament, I would find him without meaning to. I just noticed him all the time.

Much to my happy surprise, my wrestler boy seemed to notice me sometimes. One day he saw me walking home from school and he drove up to me. He rolled down his window and asked if I wanted a ride. It was the first time we had a conversation of any length or substance. I loved it.
This started many many days of rides home after practice, and sometimes we would just sit in his truck outside my parents house and talk for hours. I began to fall for who he was as a person, which was a wonderful compliment to how physically attracted to him I was. I never could believe, despite the fact that he was increasingly flirty with me, that he was even a little interested in me.

Then one day, wrestler boy asked me to go see a movie with him. I was elated and surprised. I agreed to the date, trying to make it sound like it was no big deal even though I'm pretty sure I thought I was dreaming. (Crushes are weird)

When he picked me up, I remember thinking that I hoped he didn't realize he was much too good looking for me. We went to see the movie Secondhand Lions. We sat in the theater and were being especially flirty. We laughed through the first few minutes and teased each other.

He seemed more nervous than usual, and that helped me feel strangely more confident. He seemed to be enjoying my company which helped dispel my irrational fear that I was somehow the target of an elaborate prank.
Luckily, he seemed to really want to be there with me.

 A few minutes into the show, wrestler boy took the armrest that was between us and put it up

He scooted a little closer to me.

I sat frozen, trying to keep myself from screwing this up somehow.

He went for it.  His arm slowly lifted and he put it behind my head and over my shoulders. (My heartbeat could now be heard over the sound of the movie)

Nobody had ever put their arm around me during a movie before, but it seems like a natural enough concept. He puts his arm around you. You rest your head on his shoulder. They do it in movies all the time. I felt sure I could handle it.

 As is arm came to rest behind my head, propping it forward uncomfortably,  I began to look for the comfortable spot on his shoulder.  I slid my head over slowly and waited for a little pocket where I should rest my head. It wasn't where i thought it wold be. "Maybe I'm doing it wrong", I thought. So I moved my head down a little lower, right over his chest. However, I was still uncomfortably holding my head up. Of course I thought, "I must be almost there." So I slid my head down EVEN LOWER. Suddenly, I realize that the back of my head is now resting under his sternum.

There is no going back now. I had gone WAY too far. I had to act like this was my sneaky way of cuddling. I needed him to think this was intentional. So he sat there with his arm now resting over my back. I was completely arched over sideways with my head pretend resting on his stomach. (He was fit, there was no belly to actually rest on. My neck muscles had to do all the work.) I stared into the black plastic seat in front of me and held my position. I pretended I could see the screen and that this was an intentional cuddle.

He sat pretty still, probably wondering what was going on and finally whispered, "Are you comfortable like that?"

I turned my head in some contortionist move so I could see him and smiled and said, "YUP!" and he goes, "okay.... You sure? it doesn't look that comfy." I said, "I'm great!"

I was 50% mortified that I failed so miserably at resting my head on him and ended up holding my head up awkwardly around his belly button, but also 50% extatic that he made a move in the first place. I wasn't going to give up the latter to fix the current predicament.

Probably a good 15 MINUTES later I made some silly joke and sat up again because well, my neck was killing me and I couldn't see the screen. He removed his arm from around me and we sat normally he rest of the show. I was so embarrassed.

I wasn't surprised when he didn't try to hold my hand that night. He was probably afraid I would miss and end up holding his foot.