Monday, October 1, 2012

Where do we go from here?

There was never a life without Micah. There was never a plan nor even a vision of what it would be like or what we would do once Micah died. It wasn't that we didn't know he would one day die. Death hangs in the shadows of every day you walk with Cystic Fibrosis. It's always there; always the nemesis that you know you won't ultimately win. However, you just cannot take it out and examine it. If you do, then you will be incapaciated to survive the day you are living when death is merely in the shadows. Those are the only days you get, you have to live them as if you don't know death is always there.

So, you never let yourself think about what will come afterward. I still tell other CF moms my mantra that got me through every panic attack, every crying fit, every sleepless night, every moment that I wanted to curl in a ball and cry until I could convince death to just leave us alone.

"Not my time yet." Today was not my day to mourn and to cry. So, I did not choose to succomb to that grief when it was not yet mine to embrace.

I knew the day would come that it was my turn.

What I never envisioned was what would come after that day.

I am now 2.5 months past my time and I don't have a clue where my life goes from here. I cannot measure a lifetime or a future right now. Sometimes, the gas pumps still argue with me like they did that very first week and I rarely win the fight. It mostly happens if I use my Paypal card at a gas pump, and I cannot for the life of me figure out why. The day I had to pick S up from the hospital two weeks after Micah died, I fought with multiple gas pumps before one of them finally agreed to give me the gas I needed to bring my other son home again.

If I cannot figure out how to win a battle with a gas pump, why do people think I can tell them what comes after this?

I love my father. I feel so blessed that after being estranged for the first 30 years of my life that we have rebuilt a relationship of love between us. I love that my little girl can call her Grandpa and tell him good morning before she heads off to school just because she wants to. He is the grandparent my children have and I know the gift that it to them.

Last Thursday, he called me up for yet another time to ask what our plans for the future are. There's a church an hour from us that is very interested in hiring him. He is finally far enough out from the divorce for churches to consider him again. I do not know if all Mennonite conferences have the same policy, but his conference requires a year after the divorce is finalized before you can hold a church position again. When he hit that mark last spring, he started looking for a church again. This is the first to look very likely that both he and the church have genuinely been interested in moving forward.

It's New England, which is vastly different than where Dad lives now. However, he spent years in the northwest so the climate is not terribly different. The culture is much different but New England is ALL about being the village that is a support a single father with struggling teens would thrive in.

He wants to make his decision on whether this move will put him close to 3/4 of his grandchildren or not. I cannot promise him we will stay here. I don't know if we are staying. I'm not sure I care. For every positive about staying, there is a negative. For every positive about leaving, there is a negative. This area would be good for Dad's family whether we are local or not.

The idea of wanting us to KNOW where we go now is not unique to my father. Everyone wants to know what we will do, where we will go, what lies in our future. They all mean well. There are just only a handful of things II and I both know for certain.

We will not adopt least not in the forseeable future, though we don't feel like we can really answer for the rest of our lives....mostly because everytime we say no more kids, another one enters our lives.

We will live somewhere. We have no idea if it will be here or back home or someplace completely out of left field. For now, the job is here and we want the children to remain in this wonderful school system for the school year.

I will go back to school. Almost certain it will be Nursing or Sociology but genuinely not certain which one it will be.

I will hug my children often, as often as they can tolerate me hugging them. My teens constantly roll their eyes when I hug them, and I hug them anyway.

We will finish the legal and paperwork process to complete S's adoption. All that is truly left is for S to heal enough to find his voice and be ready to tell a judge he consents to the adoption. Right now, he can articulate that he wants us to finalize the adoption, but the thought of being empowered enough to use his voice, according to him, makes him itch all over. S is safe and the finalization is a formality, so we wait and give him time and space to heal first. He knows the finalization is merely a formality and knows he is safe and home. If he cannot find his courage by spring, we'll look at addressing this in his therapy.

I am going to fight to get my health back at all costs. I have an appointment on Friday and it will not be my last to work on the issues that have arrisen in the maniestation of grief I am facing.

I am going to continue to work to help my children heal, to give them safety, normalacy and respect to grieve in their own way and to graduate out of their therapies as they are ready to move forward.

Everything else? The really big decisions? I don't know. There was never life after Micah to even GUESS where we would go afterward. Right now, I am in this deep chasm. I cannot see the way out and I don't think I am supposed to yet. I know I am not supposed to be able to tell you what road I will start driving on once I am out off this place when I cannot even see the way out yet

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