Thursday, July 12, 2018

What goes up, must come down.

I pretty much have 2 settings.  Super excited and stoked, positive and ready to take on the world or gutted, disappointed and sad.  I don't think I am bi-polar but just somewhat extreme.  It's pretty tiring for poor Gary and it's really tiring for poor me.

If I wasn't a HSP (highly sensitive person) I would be on an anti-dep or mood stabilizer to even out my emotions and highs and lows.  I would be somewhere in the middle, chilled and tra lah lah.  The last time I hit a massive, massive low and went on an anti-dep I landed up with my life long dystonia.  That was 6 years ago.  So now I have to manage them, the extreme euphoria and the deep sadness and melancholy.  That's a cool name for a band actually.  If I had a friend called Collie...Mel and Collie.  But I digress.

So this year has been super intense.   January 1st I watched my father die after a torturous long battle.  Massive relief, massive loss and later massive sadness.  It just happened to be on the same day I found out about Natey and they then shared a memorial date of January 5th.   Then it was a really fun weekend away for a triathlon on the West Coast with my trichicks.  In between all this I packed and packed and sorted my life of 16 years as we prepared to move.  I had Two Oceans half marathon and Argus cycle tour and then the wonderful trip to Holland. 

I knew I had to look for a job but with 3 trips and my race in June, the job hunt was put on hold.  Truth be told I was also afraid to get a job.  It has been a long time since I had to write a CV and apply for a job and have an interview.  !7 years in fact.

My trip to Holland with my mom to see my funky crazy aunt and her family was divine.  Holland in Spring time is an absolute treat and the flowers beyond description.  On the day I flew back Natey's brother Benjamin was born.  Perfect and healthy and beautiful.  After I got home I had 3 days to pack up the rest of the house and we moved on the 28th of April.  Stress way beyond my worst nightmare.  Day 1 the mattress catches fire and fortunately the mover saw it and chucked it down the stairs and outside.  No bed, burn holes in the carpet and a blackened wall.  Day 2 the dogs eat leftover rattex.  They get rushed to the vet.  She said they would have been dead in 48 hours and they had to vomit up all the poison. 

Eventually I settle in the house and I love it and I love the area.  I do some last minute training for my Ironman 70.3 in Durban.  I race it unprepared and its insanely hard but I do it for my dad and I do it for Natey and I finish.  Broken but finished.  On a high.

As the high of the race wears off I have my graduation 2 weeks later.  A massive heart racey high and big sense of achievement.   I had wanted to quit so many times over those 6 years.  I had also wanted to give up my cum laude goal but I pushed on and pushed hard.  And then I was there in the cap and gown and they called my name managing to pronounce my surname.   Daniel shouts Go Mom just I shouted the previous year at his: Go Daniel!

I fly 11 days later on our dream holiday and it's yet another high.  The packing and planning and excitement, the break from the cold weather and the planning of our vow renewal which I have wanted to do for many many years now.  Athens was awesome, vibey and dirty and real and interesting and organic.  I don't know why people hate it as it is what it is and we found it really fascinating.  After 2 full days we get to beautiful Skiathos.  Exactly the same as 17 years before.  Our holiday is divine, not having small whiney needy kids is divine.  The girls are fully into this vow renewal.  They want a priest and a photographer and dresses.  I want Gary, my girls and the beach.  I think about my father every day but especially that evening.  We had this big family trip planned for Dec 2018 for the 50th of my sister, the 70th of both parents and then the 50th wedding anniversary.  But then he gets sick and dies and he never gets to turn 69 never mind 70.  So we didn't wait till we were married 20 years, we just booked the trip.  15 years is special enough.  Our little service is perfect as we re promise our lives together now older and wiser and having gone through all the seasons in our marriage.  We are resilient, stubborn and committed and that's what it takes to keep a marriage solid.  I have no doubt we will still go through stormy times but quitting is just not an option.  We like each other, we fit, we make each other laugh.  Opposites in everything, right and left.  This somehow works.  Both girls speak and then we do and Sofia gets all teary and it confirms all that hard work and fight to keep my marriage healthy is worth it.  A gift to my children.  The rest of the holiday is full of sun and books and swims in exquisite turquoise sea.  Greek food and tourists and Mama Mia songs and scenes.

After a long flight home with 3 legs, Daniel collects us and we chat about his next trip.  His ticket which costs R5000.  Surely that's impossible??  No, no. it's a one way remember.  He is going.  He is starting a new life in a different country and I get this massive lump in my throat.  No impromptu visits for free dinner.  No joining the family with Sam on our camping trips, or Christmas or his birthday or mine.  He is really going, forever.  I have always known this but the reality kicks me in my gut.  I am not going to be the granny I always imagined.  I will live across the world and won't be at every single school recital or special event.  I have 3 children and I will have to choose one day where we live.  I want to call my dad as he would get it but I can't.  My youngest is having a tough time.  She won't open up so I can only love her and wait to catch her if she falls.  My middle is 16.  Intense and demanding.  Pushing me away and pulling me close.  Wanting independence yet keeping me at a distance so I am not too far.  Somehow I am in that next phase of parenting and it's hard.  I have no job yet, no studies and no real sense of purpose or achievement.   It's the end of all the crazy highs and reality kicks in.  I am in this rented house in a town that is hard to break into.  I feel really really lonely and isolated. I feel low.

Tuesday, I will crawl back up on Tuesday.  School starts and I will find a job and volunteer so long.  I will continue trying to break into this tight town.  I will carry on training for my marathon.  I need to swim again, it is always my healer, being in the water and breathing and counting my strokes.  I miss my dad.  So much more than I imagined.  I will find my mojo and my direction and a self that is less reliant on the role and purpose of being a mother.  It is time for Mel & Collie to leave the building and UltraMel to step up.  Just not today.  Tuesday.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Sweet 16...To our Rebeka

My dear Rebeka

21st of June, the longest night of the year being the winter solstice and your 16th birthday.  SIXTEEN?  I am shooketh.  Ok fine, I know it's cringe when Moms use teen slang.  Like high key bad.  Sorry, that was the last one.  For real!

So you know how I write you a letter every year on your birthday?  Well last year I can only find Sofe's so that's why I am putting it here on my blog.  Years from now you can come back and read all these letters and get a glimpse of how we both were.   We are both so sentimental, similar in many ways but I am really enjoying watching you become your own person.

This year I have decided I will write down 16 of some of my fave memories of you and us. Next year I will give you 17 pieces of wisdom you are likely to discard and later find out for yourself.

So, out of the thousands of memories to get you to this milestone birthday, here are a few that make me smile.

1. Your birth.
I can take myself right back there, walking down the passage and having this crazy moment where I looked at Daddy and I said to myself:  I am having Gary Novitzkas's baby.  Like really??   We had known each other for years and didn't like each other way back.  I was a tree hugger hippie, Dad was ex military.  Maybe we are still kind of the same?   Your labour, me walking and rocking and focused.  Dad watching the football on TV.  Him hogging the loo and me yelling at him to hurry up.  Shit!  Nothing has changed.  How funny is that??  The pain at the end and using that power to push you out.  Putting you on my chest, exhausted and triumphant and powerful.   Geez you were red and cross and massive.  And you yelled so we were sweating trying to dress you.   Daddy fell in love instantly.  I loved you and calmed you and we connected forever.  Nothing has changed there too.
2. Your first pair of shoes
Little pink suede Woolies sandals.  Not the most glam compared to those plastic clippy clop shoes you became obsessed over later, but good for your tiny little fat feet.   You marched up and down the aisle at the store and everyone just stopped to look at you loving your new shoes.
3. How you loved your Mimi.
And still do.  You were crazy about her and not just because she brainwashed you saying "You love your Mimi" from the time all her grandkids were born.  You would only sleep on her chest and fetching you to bring you home was a total mare as you screamed all the way home.  You were pretty scary!
4. Your response to your sister
You were only 2 years and 8 days when Sofia arrived.  You looked at my still round belly and said: "Baba in tummy Mama?"  No!  Just my post baby belly.  You had started potty training and every time I would feed the baby you would decide you needed a wee and off we rushed to the loo with sister stuck in the boob only to find out it was a false alarm.  Fifi & Becks, you guys were so cute together.
5. Your kindness at Happy Days with the bitchy girl
She was pretty awful to you so naturally I secretly wanted to punch her spiteful little face but you stayed kind.  You made her a gift and I asked her why you want to bless her when she makes you sad and you said you just did.  You wanted to make her happy.  So you gave her the gift and took the wind right out her sails.  You came in the opposite spirit.
6.  Your school concerts, especially the last one
With Daniel, it was just me for 6 years so having Dad with to watch you through the years and share in my joy and pride has been divine.  Your grade 7 year in your pink dress on the stage all alone being Molly.  I wanted to bawl!
7. The Belle dress
No one loved to dress up more than you.  You were a princess and life was a fairy tale with a closet full of sparkly bling ball gowns and tiaras and shoes.  Then one Christmas you asked Father Christmas for a Belle dress.  It had to be gold and shiny with a hooped skirt.  Dad and I went shopping and there it was, the perfect dress at Woolies.  A real Belle ballgown.  You wore it to church and you walked like a little queen and charmed the entire congregation. 
8. Our Mauritius holiday
It was the first time on a plane.  You cried when you said goodbye to Lucy and Zara but once we were on our way, you were beside yourself.  Watching you waterski, your shrieking under water when we snorkeled, you with Daniel and Sofie on that tube.  My real best was one evening when Dad and I watched you with your sister in your sega dresses dancing.   You girls and Dani loved those outfits.
9. That kitesurf day
Do you remember?  It was late afternoon and we went down to the beach even though it was super windy.  We decided to be brave and swim anyway and this kitesurfer gave you each a ride on his board.  You were flying along.  In hindsight I should have probably said no when some strange dude offered to take my daughter off in the ocean but oh my word it was exciting.
10. The big swing
Walking down with Goose while you girls were on the scooters and then taking turns for 20 swings each.  Again and again while my arm almost fell off.  I can see your hair flying and your big smile and loud laugh.  We should go down again, just for old times sake.
11.  Night swims
Those awesome summer nights when I would allow you to skip going to bed and we would swim till our skins turned wrinkly.  And days when you girls jumped in with your school clothes on.  Mimi allowed us to do that too.  Imagine how divine this pool will be in the summer?
12. Greys 
That darn spoiler alert when you watched an episode before me and you cried so much so I just knew someone big died and then it was our Mac Dreamy.  Derrick!  That was so uncool Shonda. Lexi and O'Mally and Izzy's boyfriend and Teddy's husband and Mark.  I love watching Greys and Survivor with you.
13.  When you got your dress for your 13th.
We went to the dressmaker and didn't have too much time till the party.  She looked at you and said: You don't want a ballgown do you?  And you said: Actually I do please Auntie Jenny.  Well of course she couldn't resist and you looked so pretty in that dress.  Mimi loves the picture of Helena doing your lipstick.  It was a lovely birthday. 
14.  Christmas
All of them.  Choosing our tree, getting Dad to help us put it up and hanging all the decorations.  Feeling the stockings to feel whose is fullest.  Later when you girls finally no longer believed in Father Christmas we could put all the gifts under the tree.  Every year you wake up a little later but it stays our favourite holiday.  Remember when we had Christmas in Singapore and Nina made Yorkshire pudding and you ate so many?  And our best one before Pops got very very sick and we were all together. 
15.  Orange River
I wish I could have gone too but I knew you were having such a good time.  Trying to pack everything in 2 buckets when you are the WORST packer.  You getting so upset because you lost your sunblock and you thought I would be so cross.  It's weird when you do that.  Over estimate how mad I will get about something and work yourself up into such a state.  It was the longest that we haven't spoken, 5 long days of not hearing your voice. 
16. Mmmh.  I need to end with my fave but I have too many.  Gordon's Bay?
Our 24 hours away staying in the guest house.  I fetched you from school in the middle of the day and when Miss Liezel asked where we were going, I said bunking and you were all nervous and giggly.  We drove for a while and you looked at the back of the car and suddenly knew we were going away.  Its weird how just 1 day together can be so special when we just picked up shells and went to the bookshop and ate dinner in our beds.  You were 10 years old.

I am incredibly blessed to have had you for these past 16 years and we have so many more years to make so many more memories.  If all goes as hoped, I am around for another 40 plus years and we have the rest of school and university and travels and weddings and babies and then the ordinary little days in between. 

I love you Rebeka Scarlett.  Happy HAPPY birthday my Becks.

Mom aka Maaaaa.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Sentimental on 'roids

I am hopelessly sentimental, idealistic and a lover of romance and love itself.  This means I remember all sorts of dates which hold value to me.  Today was a huge day, today is the 27th of April.

Today is my parent's 50th wedding anniversary.  He wanted to take my mother to the Serengeti to see the migration of the animals.  Last year we all went out for lunch and I gave them pretend medals for putting up with each other.  He looks relatively healthy and normal in the photographs.  It is a bittersweet day having them stay married for this lifetime and him passing just 4 months before.  He should have had another decade at least.  He was only 18 when he got married, just a boy.  They had their ups and downs and drove each other batshit crazy like couples everywhere but my father loved my mother with that once in a lifetime great love.  We came second, she was his number 1.  My brave mom who misses him and is living out a whole new life, I just know he is super proud of his wife.

Freedom day in South Africa and a public holiday.  We finally had our first post apartheid democratic election.  We were hopeful and optimistic about change in our country.  Sadly massive corruption, greed and inefficiency means poverty, violence and crime is worse than ever.  Services are lacking in all spheres and the gift of freedom lacked the partner of responsibility it should have co-existed with.  But, it is our rainbow nation and where we live and I love my dysfunctional crazy beautiful country.

The last night in my home.  What a happy home this has been for all of us.  We raised our children in this home and enjoyed them and and their many friends.  We did so many alterations spending far too much money but it was perfect for us for a long time.  I am sad to leave my home but excited for a fresh start.  I so wish it was sold rather than rented out as I cannot have the closure I wanted but such is life.  The thought of having to move again in a year's time is also a ballache but that's next year's problem.   It is already nighttime and in 12 hours the movers arrive and it is chaotic.  I worked so hard before I left but the 10 days I was away were not ideal and the girls did nothing so now it's rush, rush, rush.  Even the painters are working through the night tonight as I had thought they were booked to do the job while I was away.

The date of my 1st kiss with Gary.  17 years ago in my driveway of my parent's house.  A fleeting kiss due to my dad hovering at the top of the stairs.  I felt 16 instead of 30.  Who knew we would be together and parents of our beautiful girls and Daniel and our 4 dogs.  We are partners in this life.   

Koningsdag in Holland.  The entire country dress up in orange and they have these festivals everywhere to celebrate their king Willem-Alexander's birthday.  I am glad my mom gets to have the entire country celebrate her anniversary with her and the mood looks so fun.  I am also so relieved my brother and his wife Lisa are spending the day with her as well as her sister and Derrick which would make my dad happy.  He would have loved the crazy festivities of the day.  It is a total bummer I had to fly back on the 24th but the move meant I had no other option.

So much emotion today and gratitude for the marriage of my parents and my beautiful home.   I am crazy stressed and my jaw and mouth a 9.5 right now but it is what it is and I just have to wear my big panties for the week and do this big move.  Next time I write will be in my new home in my new study looking out at my exquisite garden.   I am also going to start a new blog...Singapore fling never ever happened.  Six years have passed and so many things have changed.  Right, time to carry on shoving shit in boxes.  The careful sorting and packing is over now, it's crunch time!

Sunday, April 8, 2018

The last day of my 46th year

Tomorrow is my birthday.  I usually love my birthday and arrange something to celebrate the day but I am not really in the birthday mood this year.  I think it's a combination of factors that have squashed my birthday mojo. 

Firstly I am moving house which is massively stressful.  It takes up all my physical and mental energy and causes my anxiety to spike.  I am also super stoked to move and have a fresh start and this massive clearout of 16 years of possessions.  I really wish we had sold our home and bought a new home to have proper closure and a real new beginning but it wasn't to be.  So I trust my tenants will look after my home and I trust we will be happy in our rented home even though it's only for one year.

Then in just a few days I fly to Holland with my mom for 10 days.  Our last trip was the day after my 40th birthday when we went to Singapore and Thailand and had such an amazing time.  We are excellent travel partners and spend most of the time laughing and looking for bargains and adventures.  We said we would go every second year but time passes and life happens and now its seven years on.  My aunt lives there and is a total hoot so we will have a fabulous time.  I can only stay for 10 days due to family and life plus the big move is on the 28th so I will have just 3 days for the last pack up.  But, I will try and not worry about that when I am there.

And lastly, my old dad who won't be calling me tomorrow to wish me happy birthday.  Its been a hard 3 months since he passed, it was a hard 16 months before that.  We miss him.  We miss our family unit intact with everyone in their places and roles.  One person is no longer there and the remaining family members are left trying to adjust to a new normal.   

My 46th year was a good one even with the losses and grief and mourning.  I finally finished my degree after 6 years.  My graduation is in June and I hope to start work in July or August.  I have treasured and enjoyed my friendships so much.  I have a tribe of incredible women in my life who I love and who love me.  I am very grateful I enjoy good health and a fit body at this age.   Healthier and fitter than I was 20 years ago, happier too.  Last month I cycled the 109km Argus, I did an olympic distance tri, a mile open water swim and ended the month with a half marathon.  All these things were totally impossible for me just 5 years ago.  The cliche of mid life crises and life beginning at 40 rings true.  It will always stay hard for me and my mind and body do not match re my goals and ambitions but it keeps me humble and keeps me pushing.

Big kids...I love having older children.  Pregnancy and babies and toddlers and little people were a fun and crazy time in our family and the role of mother was bigger than any other.  I embraced the season in my life and mothered 100% full on.  Now at age 13, 15 and 21 I get to step back and guide and protect and advise but it's less full on.  The other bits of me have more space.  It is time for my career now which is kak scary.  I question my capabilities, if I have it.  Can I do it?  I have massive imposter syndrome after my studies.  I aced my studies but now its real life and I feel insecure re if I can actually do this.  And what the 'is this' actually is???  What exactly do I want to do with my degree?  Where do I fit in?    Its like I am 18 years old and I need a career counselor to direct my path.

So 46 is done.  Another year of my life.  A big one with big scary grown up stuff.   Losing my father.  Life is a series of lost and found.  47 arrives tomorrow.  New house, exciting travels, my ironman 70.3 in June, my career.  I can't believe I am this old?  More than half of my life has been lived.  Many never get to 47 so I thank God for my life past and thank Him for my future.  I go forward with trepidation and excitement and expectation and I feel the presence of my father keeping me safe and still guiding my choices.  I am incredibly blessed and profoundly grateful for another birthday and this 47th year with all the possibilities it has to offer.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Owning the red high heels

Last weekend my youngest daughter went to a formal school dance.  It was the annual Daddy Daughter Dance at Rhenish High and we decided she would get an alone night with her dad, and her sister and her could share him the following year.

For once we were actually prepared and went shopping 2 weeks prior to the dance.   By some wonderful miracle we found the dress in the first 30 minutes at the first shop.  I hate shopping even more than I hate cleaning up vomit which gives you an idea of how not fun it is for me.  And...the dress was under budget and so pretty and not at all sexy which is the look Mom was going for and fortunately daughter liked it too.  Daughter is one of those people that are born sexy.  She just can't help it and has had a swag and star factor since she arrived 13 years ago.  Fortunately she is still pretty unaware and innocent which I hope to keep for as long as possible.

Next stop we hit the dreaded mall and I steer her to the sale section but Madame is like her Mimi and her eye falls on the most pricey pair they have.  They are red and very high and rather sexy.  She puts them on and sashays down the aisle like she has been wearing heels all her life.  Most kids her age would be awkward and fall around like a drunken Bambi but she doesn't.  She rocks the heels which match the dress perfectly.  My first instinct is no.  What will people think when they look at such a young girl in such high shoes?   But what do I think?  And what does she think?

So then I start thinking about how much we parent because we want to avoid the disapproval and judgement of other parents.  "Ooh I would NEVER let Suzie wear that, say that, go there, eat that blah blah frikking blah."  So I think haters gonna hate and we love the shoes and she looks stunning and I know who she is and so does she so Madame CAN get the shoes.   We book the leg wax and the hair appointment and she gets all ready.  She does her make-up way better than I do which is not saying much at all.  She walks out the door with her head held high looking absolutely breath taking and poised and lovely.  Of course she soon took them off and wore her adidas trainers on the dance floor but she made her entrance.

So what's the point of my story?   We are so deliberate in how we parent coming off a base where our parents did the bare minimum and we still thrived after being burnt in the sun, eating shit, driving in the car while they smoked and only had to be home when it got dark.  Our under parenting has made us over parent and the complexity of social media makes it that much harder.  Go with your gut.  You know your own kid.  Your family values.  You are their mom and that means its you, the other parental figure and the kid that get to decide.
  Here is my girl in her heels.  Feeling and looking beautiful.

Friday, February 2, 2018

My dad loved me. Always

Why is it so easy to advise others, to see them and their situation yet be blind to our own?  Maybe it's like when you hold a book too close to your face and you can see sweet bugger all at a certain age?  A little distance is needed to get clarity.

The past 17 months have been a time of so much learning and personal growth as we navigated the journey that is terminal cancer and mourned the loss of Natey.  Both tragic yet very different.   Different grief yet grief none the less.  A few days back a friend in the US wrote the sweetest eulogy for her dog Dewey.  She wrote about what a terrible, terrible puppy he was and all he had destroyed.  All he had never learned to do.  And then she wrote something like this…when I accepted him for who he was and not for who he wasn’t we got along just fine.   He was a great source of love, company and comfort for her.  And this got me thinking about my dad.

I wish I could have seen him more for who he was in my life than for who he wasn’t.  I only got to see him clearly and properly at the end of his life.  It was like the less physically present he became, the more accessible he became.  His soul and spirit and love and affection grew as his body declined.   I am very grateful I got to see him like that even though the cost was so high.  I got to love him as much as I wanted, as I possibly could.  And I felt loved in return.    One day after a really hard day I lay on his chest and he patted my back.   We didn’t speak, just connected.  I didn’t say ‘love you Dad’ at the end of a phone call.  I said ‘I love you Dad.’  The I is the important part.  The deliberate part.  He didn’t say ‘love you too.’  He said ‘I love you my girl.’ 

Yesterday on my wedding anniversary I looked at my wedding album.  I don’t know why I didn’t think he was proud of me.  Or at times felt unloved?  He looks so happy and proud in those photos.  He was not a super involved grandpa or father, that was my mom’s job.  But towards the end, that moment when Max my nephew walked into his room and he was so ill but gave that incredible beautiful smile, well it was a revelation of how much he loved his grandkids and delighted in them.  I wish I had seen all that all along.  It is a bittersweet gift, this knowing how much he loved us all, how proud he was of his family including me.  Of course me too??  How and why did I doubt that?   I am incredibly sad he is gone.  It is has been a long painful month but the end of his life was also a gift to me.  To all of his family.  I am glad we got to show our love for him in such a tangible way by caring for him.  We got to tell him and show him and he got to tell us.  It makes the loss that much more painful though.  

I told a friend the other day her father loves her in the best way he knows how.  How he is a product of his upbringing and generation.  And the same applies to my dad.  My dad really loved me, he was really proud of me.  He couldn’t really say it or show it or maybe I couldn’t see it but it was still there and ironically it took an awful disease to bring healing and clarity.  It makes his loss so much bigger.  I miss him.  All the parts of him. So much.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

A new journey, a new normal?

I love traveling.  I love the planning before hand and obsessive googling.  The packing of my bag, desperately trying to pack light but never quite managing it.  The trip to the airport or the roadtrip and the actual flying or driving bit.  And then the new experiences and people we meet and memories made when time has a different quality and just seven days can bring profound change.

Life is one long journey but within the one from birth to death, we take many smaller ones.  Some last for years and years and others are shorter.  We have defining moments and experiences that provide a before me and an after me.   We have all sorts of firsts in our lives too, both good ones and bad ones.  I have just completed a really really tough journey and embarked on another and I feel like I am inside out completely raw with no protection against the elements.

My last post was about 3 weeks ago and since then most of you know we lost our father on the 1st of January.  We had been waiting for his actual passing for over 2 months and dubbed him Laz as he kept on making a come back.  The emotional toll was enormous, especially for my mother.  Now that I have gone through it I understand the real end, when you truly know its close now.  I won't go write about the last 36 hours expect to say it was incredibly tough and traumatic and I begged God to take him home on the 31st.  In hindsight it had to be the 1st of January.  In 2017 it was the day I found out about Natey and my world stood still and a new journey began.  In keeping with my synchronicity theme, this life changing date was the day my dad made his exit.

A family is like a puzzle.  Each member is a piece and has a slot and a place.  We have lost a major piece of our puzzle and the picture will never look the same again.  We are floundering around trying to keep our shape but the puzzle is broken, our family is broken and our hearts are broken.  It feels literal, this brokeness.  The anxiety is off the charts, my dystonia is awful and my speech is bad.  I feel weirdly pregnant.  (So not!)   Emotional, nauseous, fragile, achey boobs.  I am not sure if it's the worry about my mother or the absolute tenderness I had towards my father at the end of his life. 

I miss my dad.  I miss Mimi&Pops, one unit.  I miss our boring phone chats:  "Hey Dad. Hello my girl." And then talking about the kids and dogs and my mom and camping or whatever it was.  The absolute relief of the end of suffering and the shock are a buffer and then reality hits 2 weeks in and the person is not away on a trip somewhere.  They are gone, forever.  I want to make it better for my mom and my siblings and the grandkids and Uncle B and Uncle Ralph.  But I can't and we all grieve alone at the end of the day. 

So what do I do?  How do I find my new normal?   How do I get my heart to stop racing?  Its achey this grief thing.  Just so fucking painful.   And everyone has to die.  And this grief truck will hit me again as it has in the past and even though I saw it coming and longed for the end, the force of that truck has literally knocked my breath away.  I miss my dad.  I miss our family.