Wednesday, June 24, 2015

around here

While I’ve had my fair share of hard days over the past two weeks, I’ve also made some fun memories and taken every opportunity I can to breathe deep and let myself be. To push the constant stream of “this time last year” thoughts to the back of my head and choose to focus on whatever is in front of me: a good book, a patch of sun, a furry pup, an article I need to turn in.

Two weekends ago my sisters and I tried on mom’s dresses from when she was in her late teens/early twenties. We did a little impromptu fashion show for my parents. I actually wore that dress with the animal print skirt to one of my bridal showers!

Doesn’t the pink and gold dress look so Betty Draper? I really hope I have an event I can wear that dress to someday.

I also went to yoga in the park for the first time, bought new running shoes (that I actually run in, whaaat who am I), enjoyed a sweet sibling dinner date with my brother, started an online interior design course, read two books (“The Likeness” and “The Last Letter From Your Lover”), hosted some friends for brunch, participated in a team trivia night for the first time and went on a date with my guy.

A few weeks ago I thought about throwing out all of the cards people sent after John and Jane died. I’ll never read them again, I thought. They’re just taking up space. But something made me wait. A few days ago, on the anniversary of the day I held my stillborn Janie Lou, I took out my “Jane” box and read through every single note. It was a bittersweet activity, and by the end of it I was completely wrecked from crying. I’m glad I did it, though.

This weekend we have a combined cookout with our small group and our old small group, and then Sunday we’re heading to Winchester to hang out with dear friends visiting from Florida and Andy’s family.  I can hardly wait!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

beach trip ‘15

I broke my two-month break from fast food with breakfast from Taco Bell on our drive to the Outer Banks. And I liked it.

from Twiddy’s website
Last week we headed to Corolla, N.C. to spend the week with my family — my parents, my older sister Katie and her husband Todd, and my older brother John-Michael and his wife Sky. JM and Sky live in South Korea and we usually only see them once a year. I loved chatting on the beach with Sky and screaming “it’s a big one!” with my brother as we ducked under waves like we did when we were kids.

We also had the pups with us — our dog, Casey, and my parent’s dog, Ellie. They happily spent the week chasing sand crabs, kissing squealing children, running into the water and flopping down under the umbrella for a snooze.

My little companion. I love her so!

I re-discovered my love for tennis last week. I don’t remember playing legit tennis since I took lessons when I was twelve. Our house was steps away from a tennis court, and we all had a blast hitting around and playing doubles. We laughed over how one of our rackets is so old it was made in West Germany!

Andy told me on the drive down that he was going to take me out one evening for a date. We went to The Crafty Cow for dinner (Jeopardy was on!) and played mini golf afterwards. I’m still thinking about the loaded tots we had... they had grits on them, of all things! But they were fabulous.

I was pregnant with Jane when we were at the beach last year, and the week after our vacation was when she died. I was understandably a little nervous about how I’d do on vacation this year, considering. I set as much of my grief aside as I could and chose to focus on the many blessings I do have. Now that I’m home, much of what I pushed deep down has come up and I know I have to let myself process these feelings, as painful as they are. There really isn’t an easy time of year anymore, because every season is tied up with different emotions and memories, but summer is especially hard.

God has answered and continues to answer my prayers for moments of relief from my sorrow. I’m grateful our beach trip was one I truly enjoyed, and that the following months hold cookouts, reunions with dear friends, new design projects and lots of summer reading.