Monday, January 5, 2015

fresh

I know that you don't have to wait for a new year to start over, but I cannot emphasize how freeing it is to say GOOD RIDDANCE to 2014.

In a competition of cryfests, last year won the title of Most Tears Shed In A Non-Postpartum Season of Life hands down. The last six months were filled with losing family members, 2 {husband} job changes, significant trials of faith...and yet none of those possessed the ability to rip my soul apart as violently as watching the demons of the world wreck havoc on my children. Battled one at a time I could have (WOULD HAVE!) survived, but bundled together and swirled into a storm so unrelenting and unyielding? Eventually the wind prevailed and I was dragged under. My naive confidence in my infinite optimism and symbolic badges of honor from past struggles conquered I clung to with foolish pride were no life raft and went down just as quickly as I did.

The depths of despair is a real place, y'all. I thought I had every room and hallway and nook and cranny memorized by heart. Turns out I had never been to the basement.




In the last few days there have been some glimmers of light. Distant outlines of hope and just-maybes on the horizon. For anybody out there deep in the trenches, know that you are not alone in your fight for a bit of happiness.


{Cinco de Mayo makes me happy.}

I didn't do Christmas cards for the 10th year in a row, and couldn't even muster up the strength to do a recap post/letter mash up because NOTHING REALLY MATTERS.

Instead of the caca poo poo that happened, how 'bout a few moments of 2014 joy?


1. Jordan turned 14, grew taller than me, and became Boy Who Makes Me Laugh The Most. Captured on film is his father trying desperately to steal that crown.


2. I seriously have slacked on the photo taking this year. Partly because the kids are getting older and refuse to be a part of my antics, but also because my point and shoot camera from 2005 makes me hate everything. My husband bought a camera my friend was getting rid of as a Christmas present for me which stirs up feelings of excitement (!!) and guilt (!!) because now I have no excuses for slacking. No doubt I will invent some.


3. My boss doesn't leave business postcards with his photo laying around anymore knowing that I always keep scissors and tape at my desk.


4. Sierra not only got me an awesome birthday gift, but also demonstrated the wisdom that she has gleaned from her silly mother: perfect meme = perfect wrapping. Doesn't matter that it's still in the mailing envelope because I LITERALLY cannot love it more.


5. YOU.

Thank you for sticking around here even though I can't commit to consistent posting.
Thank you for your encouraging words.
And thank you for reminding me that the world is full of super cool people. For reals.

Happy 2015.

44 comments:

  1. Girl, isn't it the pits when God decides to bless us with a growing season?! I keep telling Him I've learned all the lessons he keeps placing before me but for some strange reason, He often decides I need a refresher course. My heart hurts for you knowing that you have/are facing challenges with more than one kid at a time...nothing harder. I know, personally, that you have an incredible gift for encouragement so keep doing what you're great at!

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    1. Looks like you ain't too shabby in the encouragement department either :) Watching your babies weather a "growing season" is infinitely worse than going through our own. I can only pray that it makes them stronger in their faith rather than fall away from the Lord completely. But ultimately it's outta my hands in the end, no?

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  2. My heart hurts for your struggles. You LITERALLY bring joy, smiles, laughs, inspiration and sparkly wonderful happiness into my world each time I come to your site. Even if I am reading the same posting for a little while or digging in the archives. The world is so much brighter with someone like you in it. You know, someone who secretly knows that a gift bag is a lost opportunity for awesomeness. :)

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    1. Did I really say that? Apparently the dorkiness cannot be repressed.

      Sparkly wonderful happiness. THAT'S WHAT WE NEED MORE OF. To say that you can feel it through my dumb words on a silly computer screen gives me chills.

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  3. Hang in there...the bad times make the good times better. (I think).

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  4. I am seriously in awe of your writing skills! "The depths of despair is a real place, y'all. I thought I had every room and hallway and nook and cranny memorized by heart. Turns out I had never been to the basement."

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    1. I *wish* I had words to accurately describe this mess that's going on inside. It like that joy that is so intense you think you'll burst. But the opposite. How does one put sentences to that?

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  5. I too am "checking out the basement"!!! Just when I think it can't get any worse..... As Roseanne said, "Life stinks with a capital SUCK!" Your blog continues to be a little bit of happiness in my life.

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    1. HAHAHA!!! YES!!! This year has to be better because it really can't get worse. Although that is not a challenge, Lord. Just a plea.

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  6. Your posts are always a highlight in my day! I started following you when you pinned the bike wheel clock. I made it for my father who is the family bike mechanic. I am a painter always searching for non painting gift ideas so I don't completely take over my family and friends walls. Okay, the bike wheel clock totally took up wall space, but my dad loved it and now it hangs in his workshop. Thanks for all the laughs and ideas!

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    1. YOU MADE ONE?? It must be the most freaking epic thing to ever be hanging in a workshop ever. If you have a photo please send it or my life will not be complete.

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  7. I'm cheering for you! I hope 2015 is TONS better!

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    1. Thank you, my dear sweet Laura. I know you've been in some impossible places as well, so your words give me hope.

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  8. It totally sucks arse that you've had a kaka poopoo year. We can only hope this year is a little easier on all of you. I'm sending white light,love and hugs all round. Also a high five for Sienna because that wrapping is literally the best. I LOVE the West Wing with a weird,possibly unhealthy kind of love. I now feel a strong urge to start watching season one... Hang in there mate X

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    1. I was thinking "West Wing?", which I've never seen an episode of because I can't do dramas (except Downton Abbey/The Paradise/any other PBS Masterpiece Classic), but then I googled it and NOW I get it. Rob Lowe is that too. The meme is in reference to his Parks and Rec character:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejZC5r5wS64&index=2&list=RD_Xjka07o1-0

      If you've never seen the show, power through season one, which is kinda slow but necessary, and I promise by the end of season two you'll be addicted. So much quotable quote material I can barely stand it.

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    2. Aah! I see.. never seen it but would like to,I've heard it's great :)

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  9. Chickadee, I found your site through a link just last summer, and immediately became enamored with it because of your wonderfully fun and creative gift wrap ideas. The hilarious commentary didn't hurt, either, but I have absolutely enjoyed checking your pages every few days just to see what sort of great stuff you've put together. I honestly would never know last year was so rough on you and your family, simply based on the photos and narrative attached to them. You seem to have held up marvelously despite the circumstances, and continue marching forward (which some days may probably be the only thing you can do). I shall keep checking in, just for the laughs and great ideas, but please know that I am thinking of you and your family and hoping this year is better for all of you.

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    1. Oh Deb in Oklahoma. Should you ever venture south on 75 into the great state of Texas you are welcome to drop by so I can give you a big hug that will linger a bit too long and make you feel super uncomfortable!! :) Thanks for the love.

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  10. Know why I love your blog? Because you're real. Real wife, real working girl, real mom.
    The fact that you admit to having a caca poo poo year is great. Because none of our lives are perfect.

    Here's something for your 2015. It's a project that those of us enrolled in Lifebook 2015 were given: create an "I Am Awesome" jar. Decorate a big jar any way you want. Every day - or whenever the mood strikes - write an accomplishment on a scrap of paper and put it in the jar. Put in moments of joy too. Or moments of coolness. (copies of blog comment encouragement?). At then end of the year, or whenever you most need it, take them out and review how awesome you are!

    You're doing great. Hang in there.
    We love you.

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    1. Real. The only way there is.

      I have no idea what Lifebook 2015 is, but I love the moments idea! I'll have to get a 5 gallon bucket because of all the FANTASTIC things that *must* happen this year to even life out. 2014 happy times would fit into a baby food jar ;) You're brilliant.

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  11. I didn't know what was going on and I'm so sorry to hear. I haven't had but a little bit of the children in crisis thing but I tell you what, that pain was different from any pain or hurt I'd ever felt for myself. If you've come this far and haven't just shriveled up and found yourself a dark corner to rock in, then you're quite a woman indeed. But we already knew that.

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    1. More is bound to come, although you are such a strong woman already, maybe it will skip over your household completely? We already know life isn't fair, so that is bound to happen. Heather gets to be beautiful AND kind AND never has to staff a shift of suicide watch. Unfair indeed.

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  12. I'm not sure how I stumbled onto your blog, but I so enjoy it~ through good times and difficult ones.

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  13. Sorry that things aren't all sunshine for you. I'm in the same pit. Right now my usual SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) has started to set in. I, too, am glad to see 2014 go and I'm hoping for a much better year in 2015.
    I'm send up some prayers for you and yours that this year will be better for you too. And some big (((((HUGS))))) are flying through the internet to you.
    Keep posting when you can and I'll keep reading. Happy, sad, good and bad, I'm here if you are.

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    1. Well that stinks. Sometime knowing that a funk is coming on doesn't make it any easier to deal with. That's how I feel about summer :) I hope this winter is unusually sunny and you're blasted with megadoses of Vitamin D. We can wish, right? You're such an angel - I hope it doesn't get too bad this year.

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  14. Aww, I'm sorrry you're having a hard time! I'm so grateful for you, and I wish we lived close still. (I just KNOW we are kindred spirits!) Hang in there, and remember that we are all here for you. (Insert cyber super-long hug here) Bring on 2015!

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    1. I'm pretty sure that you were busy having babies and I was busy trying to keep Brendan from escaping for the 47th time. Not exactly prime conditions for reaching out and socializing. No doubt you thought I was a hermit...only partially true ;)

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  15. Best of New Year wishes to you, Miz Wiser (because you are) Thanks for continuing to write, and I enjoy reading your blog, and hopefully writing's good for you. Love the positive spin you put on the ca ca poopy year. The S watch is a tough one to endure, take it day by day. My gratitude journal was filled with the same entries for months...I woke up today and he was alive. Such a tough health issue to endure. You hang in there, friend!

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    1. I don't know if this made me feel better or worse, but either way - tears. Hugs through my keyboard to yours!! xoxo

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    2. Thanks, Miz Wiser, best wishes for you!

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  16. Years ago I found your blog because of a silly social story you published and I felt like I had found a kindred spirit! Your humor, personality and style made this blog so refreshing and fun, and I have been a reader ever since. Thank you for sharing your days with us, you have made a fellow mom of a largeish family and autistic sons smile more than you know!

    I hope 2015 is full of blessings for you!

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    1. Autisitic sons - as in plural - was a huge reminder that it could be worse :) Of course in many ways, Brendan is my easiest child lately...who would've thought years ago that we could EVER say that? Thank you for the blessings. 2015 better be gentle on your brave, angel soul or I will kick his butt.

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  17. I've been a long time occasional reader and can't even remember now how I first stumbled across your blog. I have loved your creativity and humor over the years and am so sorry that 2014 has sucked beyond the telling of it. I don't feel I have any wise words or comforting sentiments to offer except that someone who you don't know and will probably never meet (trying not be to be creepy here) is saying a prayer for both you and your family. I sincerely hope that those glimmers of light and outlines of hope continue to grow brighter and brighter for ya'll. I think we can all agree that 2015 needs to be freakin' awesome. Sending out a Texas-sized cyber hug (again, not in a creepy way) to you!!! BTW, laughed at the Gig'Em sign you made. Just wished it would've worked.

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    1. HAHA! It totally didn't work, did it?!
      We're only a few weeks in, but as of now 2015 is so much improved it's almost hard to remember how ridiculously horrid the last few months were. ALMOST. No doubt all these cyber hugs are responsible - how can the universe ignore such a sweet output of support? Impossible!! :)

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  18. Hang in there. Life is a roller coaster isn't it. 2014 started off good and was just rolling along then May happened then July then December.It all rolled together in those months inbetween but there was some good. 2015 has now start off good and I hope it stays that way for a while.
    Let's hope 2015 rolls along on an even tracks. I'll take a few bumps but those crashes hurt.
    I like the idea of a "I am awesome" jar suggested by Pam Moore above.
    Hug and prayers for a better year.

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    1. Isn't it weird that days can seem like months, but then December comes and it feels like the year flew by? The older I get, the more that I feel like we just put the Christmas stuff away and then it's already time to get back out again. I swear the kids just had their first day of school a few weeks ago, and here we are more than half way to summer vacation. Crazy.

      Oh, and if you make an "I am awesome" jar, I'd love to make an entry!

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  19. I've decided that I am going to channel Coco Chanel this year and embrace the power of the number 5. The almighty google says it represents grace, and I for one could use some this year! So long 2014, don't let the door hit ya!

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    1. Amen!! Although I always feel the power of 5: Sierra, Brendan, Jordan, Camden, and Hayden :) HAHA!

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  20. So amen to that Annis Horriblis, 2014! You are even better at crafting a unique family than you are crafting a unique environment. Every member fits together while able to stand alone as a marvelous work of artful parenting.

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  21. My hubby loves chaffs... and the scissors and tape that got your boss really made us both laugh! Thank you. I just happened across your site - probably from some link party or some such. Keep finding the spots of joy, and hang in there. Easier said than done sometimes. Praying you will comforted and held by everlasting arms, lifted out of the 'basement', and covered with a warm blanket of grace. 2015? Bring on the sunshine!
    Sheree

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  22. I found your site through a link to your gift wrapping ideas a little while back, but didn't have a chance to fully check it out until today. Love your sense of humor and awesome ideas! When I read this entry my heart went out to you. I was down in the basement a couple of years ago after several heartbreaking things happened all around the same time and my heart ached unbearably. It took awhile, but I made it out of the basement and back into the sunshine and you will too. Wishing a better and happier year for you and your family !

    Mary J.

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  23. It's been 4 months lady! Get to it! I need my fix.

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