It's easy to blog about most of the things I choose to write about here on these pages. Funny things the kids have done or said, recording memories (good and bad) of our day-to-day life as a family of five as a digital scrapbook, recalling and remembering tidbits of my childhood in an effort to bring the special loves of my past to life for my kids, party planning and recipe tips - you know. You read it.
It's not easy to blog about the hard times. My friend Kathy calls the hard posts on her blog "The Ugly Truth" – and I suppose that is what this post essentially is.
I'm a planner. I think I've covered that on this blog – and anyone who knows me knows I like things to be organized. My desk at work. My pocketbook. My calendar. I like to know where everything is. What to plan for. What to expect.
I'm not big on surprises, in fact, I hate them. I suppose the occasional unannounced call from a friend or note in the mail is a welcome surprise, but across the board, I like to know what is coming. Good or bad.
Earlier this week, something happened that shocked me to my core. I can't (or rather, won't) publically elaborate on the details – I'll just say that the events rattled me. Blindsided me. Gave me pause. Hurt me in a place, deep down, that I didn't know could be hurt. Made me think twice about my place in this world, about the people I trust, about how willingly I let them into my life, and ultimately, how I let them go.
See, people have come to think I'm this strong person. I can handle anything. They don't know how I "do it all."
I don't either.
They think that because I have a smile on my face and I'm not constantly falling apart and dissolving into tears that I'm strong, that I have it all "together."
Wanna know a secret?
Through all of the crap that's come down the pipeline in the past few years, well, let's just say I've not dealt with it well. Rather, I've learned how to hide it. Apparently very well. So far, my method has worked. I seemingly have come out of it with all of my vices. I don't dwell on the drama (or trauma, as the case may be). I try not to think about all that has happened since the summer of 2005, because if I do, the bottom starts to fall out and I can't let that happen.
But just so you know the junk I've got constantly mulling around and around in my head - in four and a half years I've sat by my father's bedside and witnessed his last breath, I held my mother's hand following her brain surgery, begging and pleading with her to just open her eyes and have some glimmer of recognition – when she looked disturbingly like someone I'd never met with all of the scars and bandages and tubes – and then had to leave her – to walk away from my mom to return to my home here on the other end of the continent, I've learned how to live my life and be a mother myself to three little lives in the absence of my mom's ability to mother me (and grandmother her children), I've miscarried two babies, I've weathered financial storms with my husband – when there were days when we weren't sure how we were going to pay the mortgage, the rising daycare bill, and feed our kids, I've been deeply hurt by friends who I thought I could trust, only to see them for the fickle selves they truly are, I've not slept a full night's sleep in about five years due to said three kids, various illnesses of theirs and my own, I've juggled working at a stressful job (that most of the time I love) while trying to be the best mom and wife I can be, and I've struggled to find the balance between not losing myself and my identity and solely living for everyone else.
I learned how to deal with all of that. I've had to – I haven't had a choice. It's life. And I'm pretty darn proud that I haven't ended up in the loony bin or heavily medicated just to get through my "normal" day. I've learned how to compartmentalize. Put things aside. Stick them on a shelf in a box and when I have time and am ready – take the box down, sort through the emotions, have a big fat cry, and move on.
But this recent news? Well, it questioned all of that.
Took my breath away. Literally.
Because I seriously can't handle any more. The box is full. There is no more room to deal with anything else. I can't stuff anything else inside.
I don't know where to begin to deal with this junk (for lack of a better term) – because I can't stick all of the emotions and hurt and accusations and drama into my tidy little box. I can't sweep it under a rug, and I can't simply ignore it.
So after the dust settles and I pick my jaw up off the floor – I guess I'll do what I always do – brush myself off, focus on my kids, my husband, my mom, my family. Put on that pretense of being strong, and maybe – just maybe – in time, it will become true.
And the rest can fall where it will.
Because in the end, I know that I've given all that I can give. And that's all that really matters. And that's all that anyone can ask.