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What Dave is missing


Remembering Dave

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I wanted to title this:

"What Dave is missing - is it a good thing I don't have time to think about it?"

but there wasn't room

Faith is starting kindergarten next week. Frankly I am so consumed with getting through each day and just sort of surviving, I never stop to think about these milestones. Obviously I am now, having a quiet moment at work. It's just a little weird to think about and somehow I am glad I don't take the time hardly ever.

And practically no one in the world realizes what my life is really like. I know others are in my boat but I don't know them. It's just Faith and I. I have my Dad, but he's 77, and he's trying to have his own life (dating! you go Dad!) and I'm glad he is - but I feel like the whole world consists of Faith and I, in our own balloon. We're all each other has. Sure we have other relatives, but they're not HERE, they're all off living their own lives, and we're living ours - even my brother and his wife and 3 kids, and they're only an hour away. I miss my Mom, because she was a big part of our lives especially right after Dave died and her cancer hadn't spread yet - she was even well enough to pick Faith up from daycare and take her home. We're doing OK, but with no one to help in a practical way, it is CONSUMING. To the point that I find myself no longer caring if I have a social life at all. For awhile I missed going to dinner with adults, going to movies, going to see live music, but I just don't miss it any more. I got so excited when I saw that "our" church is having a picnic on Sunday the 10th and that is something I could go to with both Faith and my Dad - something to do, that we can all go to!

Just sharing some weird random thoughts and wondering if anyone else feels the same way - just sort of orbiting out there on their own?

One of these days I gotta change my avatar to an updated picture of Faith. She's so grown up!

Karen

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Karen,

I understand. As I handed over the keys to my 15.5 year old son, leaving the license bureau with his "still warm from the laminating" temporary driver's permit...I, too, pondered about the things that Bill is missing. I, too, enjoy hiding out at home with the boys as opposed to venturing out into the world again, after all, it is a scary place to be single again. I wonder who will take Bill's place and be the "crazy fan" in the stands this year blowing the air horn as Scott's team makes a touchdown. I wonder who will go overboard buying Halloween candy so that we eat more than we give out. I wonder who will lift the 27 pound turkey out of the oven for the hourly basting on Thanksgiving. I could go on and on about all the things I feel Bill is missing out on and all the things I miss him doing. Yes, Karen, I understand. I'm on auto-pilot, doing what a mother does, but my heart isn't in it and I'd rather be "someplace" else.

Please do update your avatar soon, I'd love to see how much Faith has grown.

Love,

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I always think that maybe they see even more than we do. I used to think that about my dad, who died when I was young. Maybe he couldn't be there physically for the big things, but I thought he could be there even for the small things...the classroom spelling bees, etc., that Mom missed because she was at home. For sure it isn't the same at all, but it made me feel better inside.

You guys are doing an amazing job, making a good life for your kids.

:) Kelly

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Oh Karen you are doing what you have to do to survive. Having Faith to care for is not only a huge responsibility but something for you to hold on to. Someone for you to focus a lot of your love on. She can not take Dave's place but just having her place in your life is very time consuming.

Each of us have many things in common but we each live a life that is different from everyone else. We grieve differently and we handle our grief differently. You seem to be doing a great job both with Faith and your grief but I know there are times when all is quiet the pain will find you and those memories and questions will have their way with you for awhile.

As for your question, everyday I see things that I wish Johnny could share with me. Not always the big things but many little things. He had two grandchildren born right after he died, one only two weeks later. I was just devistated thinking of all he was missing with them. My mom died 21 years ago with LC. I had only one grandchild at the time. Still after all of these years I think how much she would have enjoyed those children and my granddaughters weddings.

I too believe that they are probably enjoying all of those things right along with me. They are not the ones who is missing so much it is us who are left her behind to face the everyday workings of life. God Bless you and Faith and please let us see what you both look like now :!:

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Ok, so open house/orientation for kindergarten was last Thursday. After 30 minutes of speeches and introductions in the cafeteria we got our room and teacher assignments and off we went, shopping bags of supplies in hand, to find Faith's room and meet her teacher. We were walking down the hall and I just started crying. Dave wasn't there to experience that and he LOVED that kind of stuff. Most kids had a mom and dad with them. I can go on without Dave because he taught me how to be a strong person, but whenever there is such a strong and PRACTICAL reminder that Faith is missing out by not having him there it really gets to me.

I told the teacher the situation - she hadn't read all the kid's registration sheets yet - and she was really nice - I gave her the reader's digest version of Faith's little tragedy filled life, ending with losing her grandmother. She assured me that she'd take great care of her and Faith would do well in her class.

So today was the big day, the first day of school. Faith was so excited and so was I! I walked her to the front door and there were staff there to greet the kindergarteners and show them where to go. One lady asked if this was Faith and said she was going to be Faith's speech teacher, said, come on, Faith, I'll take you, we're going to be good friends, and Faith turned around, smiled and said bye bye mommy, I love you! I was SO HAPPY because I just pictured her clinging to me and me having a hot flash and sweating my butt off(been having those for some time) as I tried to peel her off me and physically hand her over to some asst. principal. didn't happen! I was gloriously happy - oh, and I got her to pose for a couple of photos by the front door, I had the presence of mind to do that!

I only hope Dave can watch and is smiling and is as happy as I am right now.

and my Mom. My Mom cried when she was dying because she was going to miss watching her grandchildren grow up. that was her only regret. she would have loved this moment. she would have driven over early in the morning just to take Faith's picture walking into the front door. but hopefully she's watching from heaven, too, and is happy and proud of Faith.

God Bless,

Karen

this was quite a rant!

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  • 3 weeks later...

I just felt like checking in again. Faith is doing so well in kindergarten. Her teacher is wonderful. We've sort of become friends. She's keeping a close watchful eye on Faith - sends me emails when she notices anything amiss with my little angel. She is quite taken with Faith. I've told her that when Faith hasn't gotten enough sleep or is hungry the demon comes out in her. She saw it one day - I was out a little late going to a class at church of all things so Faith didn't get to bed until almost 10 pm. Lori emailed me the next day to tell me that Faith wasn't so nice to her friends. She thought it was because she wouldn't eat her snack. I knew it was the sleep issue and told her so. She's making sure Faith eats her snack and her lunch and I'm making sure she gets to bed on time. It's just so wonderful to find a teacher that understands the situation. I never could get any daycare personnel to get it. I think they just didn't care. This teacher recognizes how bright and smart Faith is and is committed to helping her develop that. I went to the school and had lunch with Faith and her little friends yesterday (the school actually encourages that). Faith was so proud to see me and so proud to show me her lunch that she bought. Her little girlfriends were so sweet and well behaved and so was she. It ws great to see her so grownup and proud. and again, it was something Dave would have just loved. I remember when he was in between jobs he was a substitute teacher for a short while and one week had a kindergarten class. I can just imagine him, the gentle giant, supervising 20 kindergartners. the funny thing is that not long after that I met a young lady at an aerobics class who was also a kindergarten teacher at that school and she got such a kick out of me being Dave's wife. she said he was quite the talk of the school that week!

OK, I'm rambling.

Faith is going to be Snow White for halloween and I'm going to be the evil stepmother. I'll have to take a picture. I haven't dressed up for halloween in ages. it will be so much fun! Faith said I could be the evil stepmother as long as I ACTED nice. Darn!

hopefully I will remember to download photos this evening and I can post an updated avatar of Faith.

God Bless, Karen

and Faith

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(((((((Karen))))))))

I am so looking forward to seeing those Halloween pictures of you and our precious little Faith. Does that child have any idea how many "aunties" and "uncles" she has from this board?

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Oh, ya'll, I KNOW I'm doing well, but sometimes it's just so HARD. And sometimes I just want some time to myself!

I'm having a D&C next week - having all kinds of fun female problems. I had my pre-op "checkup" at the hospital with an RN yesterday. I've had general anesthesia four times including two D&C's (but for miscarriages) so I know what to expect. But when the nurse asked me who would be taking me home from the hospital AND STAYING WITH ME I broke down sobbing. Because when I had these things in the past - one big surgery to remove uterine fibroids, two D&C's, Dave was ALWAYS there for me. (the 4th time was to remove my melanoma, and my parents took me because Dave was getting chemo that day - it was weird, his Dad took him to chemo, my parents took me for outpatient surgery.) Dave was always so comforting and sympathetic and took good care of me when we got home, and now, well, my Dad is nothimg more than a driver . . . and then she said someone had to stay with me that night in case I had problems - I hadn't thought about that - but I'm not going to have problems and if I do I'll pick up the phone and call 911. It all just reminded me how "on my own" I am, no mom, no Dave, just grumpy old dad. well, I'm glad as heck I have him, I am, but it's not the same!

Pity party is over, I'll be fine! I just dread trying to explain to Faith why she can't sit in my lap or be picked up that evening. when I'm sick she gets scared to death I'm going to heaven, too!

I guess the visit with the RN just reminded me just how much I am "winging it" right now. Shhh, don't tell anyone, but I have no clue what I'm doing!

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Karen wishing you well for the D&C. I hope it is easy and recovery is painless. It is unfair all you have had to go through, it makes no sense why these things happen :(

You are doing one heck of a job with Faith. Dave and your mom are smiling down on you.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey, had the D&C - my Dad got increasingly uncomfortable over the details - like I said in another post, I could tell he wanted to be nowhere near that women's pavilion - so I got one guy friend to take me (chidhood friend, was my "maid of honor" in our wedding - no he's not gay - he introduced Dave and I and I've known him since 6th grade) - and another guy friend (yes, that one was gay) picked me up and took me home. he was great, he had to come into the post-op room and sign my discharge instructions while I laid there, but he didn't mind. My dad picked Faith up and brought her home, 45 mins after I got home! She was really good, and even the next day, and on the third day asked if she could start pushing on my tummy again - I said, you never pushed on my tummy to begin with, why now? LOL. but I will tell you it's taken me one full week to get over the whole thing. I have felt crummy in one way or the other since last Tuesday. today I woke up feeling fine for a change.

So I got through it. and the doc didn't find the bad thing that might have been there, so I'm fine. one more thing to put behind me.

Karen

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Karen this is good to hear. I'm so glad you have some good friends around you who can support you thru these things.

You are so much stronger than you even know.

Take care of yourself.

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HA! I think I know that Katie, it's always facing a new challenge that makes me nervous - especially logistics with Faith.

People that complain about their spouse (and yeah, I probably was one of them at one time) really get to me now. I have a friend of a friend - all chinese adoptive parents - this one lady is married to a minister who is a wonderful human being and they adopted their daughter about when we did. According to our mutual friend, all she does is complain about her husband. if her life is not JUST RIGHT every single day she becomes The Drama Queen. I say, gosh, get a life, lady! Look at what you got!

Then I have another friend from this same group, with a bio son Faith's age. It takes both her and her husband to get the little boy ready for kindergarten every morning. She makes it sound like a military exercise. Alot of drama. She had a sinus infection or a cold or something one week, so she stayed in bed and sent us emails with blow by blows of how tough it was for the Dad to do it all by himself every morning. I'm thinking, either get up and help, or why is it so difficult for two grown people to get one small child ready for school? What would EITHER one of them do if they were ME? then it seems like about once a month she has to go out of town by herself (with her sister or something not completely alone) because she just needs to get away and can't take it . . . (take what?). Again, what would she do if she were me? I have to be "ON" all the time. And the biggest thing is, she has the nerve to whine about all of this to ME. I'm not sure if she knows I took care of myself AND Faith two hours after a 1.5 hour long procedure involving general anesthesia AND got her ready and drive her to school the next morning BY MYSELF. I'm actually kind of proud - and we will all see each other at a birthday party this weekend so I may have to throw some of those factoids about my last week out there just to see her reaction.

OK, I ramble, but sometimes a hard time makes us stronger and gives us some bragging rights, right?

Karen

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OK, I ramble, but sometimes a hard time makes us stronger and gives us some bragging rights, right?

you better believe it. I'd tell all about your last week to those "friends" and boy I'd be very dramatic about it too. Maybe it will put things in a bit more perspective for these people. Unfortunately many times, you really don't know what you have, and you're really not thankful for what you have, until it's gone. I hope they learn to appreciate what they've got before it is too late.

Glad you are feeling better!

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Karen--

I 'get' that too... From a different point of view. Being a Navy wife is not comparable to losing Dave of course, and I would never suggest that, but when DH is gone... and even when he's home, I am hard-pressed to understand complaining about husbands... especially husbands who are trying to help with the kids. It's not easy being a one-man band, no matter what the reason. I slip up sometimes when he's home, but always end up wanting to shake myself for doing so.

You do find out what you're made of when you have to walk through the fire by yourself.

(((((hugs))))) to you. You are really doing a remarkable job in such lonely circumstances.

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After my hubby died (Graden my son was 9months old at the time), my clsoe friends would call me and complain about their hubbies and I would ask them "Do you realize how lucky you are to have him?" or make a comment about how it is better than some other alternatives. They stopped complaining to me. These days, we laugh about how I what I said to them gave them a new perspective and one of my best friends says my loss saved their marriage.

Tell em how it is, girl! You do rock!!

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