Wednesday, November 16, 2016

It's Not Your Fault

I know you saw his face the other night.  You didn't expect it. You definitely didn't want to. But there it was when and where you least expected it. You went out to have fun and suddenly your night was ruined.  Your heart and mind sent into the past, into the hurts, into the confusion.

I am sorry.  I am sorry that someone else's selfish desires were more important to them than your innocence.  Your rights.

I am here. You are not alone. I know it feels like it when the tears come streaming and the pain can't be shoved down.  

I know the confusion that swirls around the events. The way your mind twists what happened making you question your part in it.  It wasn't you.  It wasn't right.  He was wrong.  Not you.  I will shout that over and over for you to hear above the shame that you somehow think is yours to bear.




I can see you trying to piece together the shattered image of who you were before. I can see you feeling broken and unsure of who you are now and your place in this world. I will whisper over the doubts for you.




You don't have to be strong alone.  
I am here. 

When the voices rise up to lie to you about what happened. 

I am here. 

When shame and doubt blur the lines between the way he treated you and who you think you are. 

I am here.
I am here to be the words you need to hear until you can say them for yourself.

You are loved. You are seen.  You are not alone. It's not your fault.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The Last 9 Months

*I realized as I read the title it sounds like I might be announcing another kiddo into the me, I am not. *

Happy November my people! 
I have missed you!!!  

After my last post back in February my life became about as hectic as it could be.  In early March all craziness broke out. 

The last two months of being in CT was filled with in no particular order:
  1. Planning a move from CT to WA.
  2. lots of kids at the house (typically 8 to 11 kids depending on the day whose ages ranged between 7 months and 16 years)
  3. helping out a friend who was moving away
  4. our 17th anniversary
  5. another friend having a medical and personal crisis and us taking her 13 year old son in for 34 days
  6. lots of back and forth trips to support the friend and her son
  7. taking care of an infant several days a week whom I love and call "our baby"
  8.  lots of meetings
  9. one of our daughter’s closest friends from out of state visiting for a week
  10. an early birthday day trip to NY for 2 kids, a friend, and Steve
  11. Easter baskets for 9 kids 
  12.  skating practices
  13. parent/teacher conferences
  14. therapy visits
  15. IEP meetings
  16. getting a new dog that we had no plans of getting
    our baby and Butterscotch taking a nap together
  17. a birthday
  18. local area family visits
  19. getting rid of anything and everything I didn’t want to bring with us (Amazing how much junk we had accumulated in the 3 years we lived there!)
  20. saying goodbye to my friend and her son who moved out of state 9 days before we left CT
  21. Spending the day in the ER with one daughter after being bit in the face by a neighbor dog and needing stitches 
    Poor baby got bit by her friends dog.
    It all healed up nicely and it wasn't
    too deep of a wound.
  22. follow up doctor visits
  23. un-enrolling the kids from school
  24. Spring break falling the week the movers came
  25. working, working, working to clean our house for inspection 
  26. having amazing friends helping to clean said house
  27. game nights with friends
  28. final karaoke nights
  29. packing up our 2 vehicles and a trailer with everything we would need for the move and for however long we would have to live without our things
    This is my luggage system for the trip.
    Small baskets one days clothes big
    baskets two days clothes. The biggest basket
    is our dirty laundry. The gray bag is filled with
    sweatshirts, the green bag swimwear. The pail and stool
    will end up in the trailer. All that is left for the van is the snacks
    Not an inch to spare.  I am a packing NINJA!
  30. hotel living for 7 days before moving away.
  31. lots of tears, stress, and panic

we sure love these people!
On April 26 th the kids who were traveling with me and I had our last lunch with my neighbors and good friends.

Steve and 3 of the boys had left earlier in the day to get to get to our first stop so they could do some exploring.  I stayed back to wait for my sister’s flight to come in at 3 that afternoon.  She has been on every cross country move with us and we couldn’t break tradition.  

My van pulled out of the 99 restaurant parking lot with 3 kids, 2 cats  in a HUGE crate, a dog, everything we would need for our trip from CT to WA for the whole cross country trip with tearful goodbyes.  
Mars and Ragamuffin getting comfy in their crate

I will write more about the trip soon. 

Once we arrived in Washington on May 4th, 3 years to the day that we left it, we stayed with my folks.  Ten people in 1200 square feet of living space, just throwing that out there.  (Yes, my parents are saints) It was time to start a whole new whirlwind of crazy.
This is how I organized the clothes
for all 6 kids in a small living space.
The youngest two boys shared bins.

All 7 kids had to be enrolled into the schools here for the 35 days that were left in the school year.  Fortunately it was the same district we had been in before, so that eased the process a little.

Our roller skater started right up with the club here on May 6th.  More on that soon.

Then, the house hunting began.  The market here was/is exploding, so if you liked a house you had to jump on it fast or it would be gone within 24 to 48 hours with multiple offers. On May 6th a house went on the market we liked, we went and looked at it on the 7th, put an offer on it that day,  and by May 11th after a small bidding war, the house went pending.   School got out on June 15th and on June 17th it was ours with keys in hand.  That weekend our daughter flew into Washington.
The realtor photo of our house that captured our hearts

Over the summer my time at home was mostly spent watching Netflix and hanging out with the family when not at the skating rink.  I have taken the last several months to pretty much just be lazy.  

In August the humane society that is off our main road had a special 2 for the price of 1 kitten deal, so two of our girls got an early Christmas present, and our pet count is now up to 3 cats and 1 dog. 
Ragamuffin tends to keep to herself.  This is her get-a-way spot.

Black kitty Fay, Butterscotch, and Whiskey
They all love each other 
If you are doing the math you might be thinking that should read 4 cats, but sadly our male cat did not make it to the new house. He went out one day at my parents house and never came back a few days before we were to bring them over here. 

The new house meant new schools for all of the kids, but at least in the same district.
Now we are 2 months into the school year with a 1st grader, 3rd grader, 6th grader,                                                                         7th grader, two 9th graders, and a Senior.  

I still have so much unpacking and organizing to do! I am going to try and force myself to finish the garage and the rest of the boxes that are sitting in the family room by Thanksgiving.  Decorating for Christmas is a big motivator! 

Oh! To add to the Holiday fun that is coming we will also be dog sitting for the next several months. Our little dog is so excited to have another canine playmate full time!