Sunday, October 19, 2008
chris
It's been over three months now since Chris died. Off and on I've wanted to write about him, but it's hard to find the right words. But, even if I get the words all wrong I think it's still important to try. I think about him almost every day, but most of the time it's still not real to me that he's gone.

I was at the gym on the day that it had been three months since his death and in the middle of lifting a weight, the thought that Chris isn't here just hit me hard and I almost started crying right there. I don't have the same darkness or fog about it that I did in the first few weeks, but I still find myself thinking about him and feeling sad at odd moments.

I hear stuff all the time that makes me think of him. On NPR, an author was talking about her mother who had died and the "mystery of absence". How can she have been here and now she's not? How could Chris have been here and now he's not? At church, I was reading a visiting teaching message about understanding that you are a child of God and treating your body like a temple and I just started crying. It was a message I've heard literally hundreds of times before and was never moved by. But looking at it through the lens of suicide put a terribly different spin on the words. I listened to an interview with David Foster Wallace (an author who recently killed himself) and thought of Chris and thought of Wallace's family. David and I watched a Woody Allen movie where one of the characters says, "I want to want to live." I want Chris to want to live. But the decision is already made.

What's strange is that I'll think about him in terms of how we could still help him. What could made a difference. It's a hard thing to let go even though it's so pointless.

Sometimes I think about the peace that I felt at the prospect of dying. How grateful I felt for my life. How 28 years felt like a huge gift. And it almost makes me feel a little better, that maybe that was the kind of peace that Chris had come to. Except, I got to live 10 more years. I don't know what Chris would have done with 10 more years, but I don't know how he could regret living them.

I do hope Chris has peace now. I think he must have peace now, but it is at such a terrible cost.
posted by lochan | link
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Friday, October 10, 2008
running up that hill
For the last couple of Fridays when I go to the gym instead of stretching, lifting, and then running, I just stretch and run (and stretch again - stretching is my new favorite. I used to hate it because I'm not very flexible, but that seems silly now. Who am I trying to impress when I'm stretching? You can't win stretching).

Today I ran six miles. In 59 minutes. And it felt incredible. When I was done, I felt like I could've kept going, but I've only been running four or five miles at a time and I didn't want to overdo it. While I was running, I realized why the mom of the Masche sextuplets trained for and ran a marathon around the babies' first birthday. You can literally run away from stress.

When my older girls were babies, I didn't start working out seriously until they were 18 months old. Thinking about that makes me wonder what my rush was to get back into it with these babies. And, why I'm working so much harder than I usually do.

1) After the babies were born I felt terrible. I was stooped over and literally couldn't get myself to stand up straight. My back hurt, my ribs hurt, and I felt weak. I was lucky enough to lose the baby weight quickly (but it was lucky like it's lucky to get food poisoning or a tape worm - after you're better the weight loss feels like a bonus but in the moment you just want to feel good).

2) I NEEDED to do something for myself that had nothing to do with babies or work and working out was the only thing I felt like I could do without feeling guilty.

What I didn't know is what a great stress reducer it would be.

The first time I started running regularly was a little over 20 years ago. My favorite album to run to was Sinead O'Connor's Lion and the Cobra. I put it on my ipod shuffle a few months ago and I run to it almost every day. It's good to feel as good as I did 20 years ago. Better, actually. Because I'm not running away from my angst about my freshman boyfriend!

I'm not sure what my point is. I just feel good about getting stronger and faster and that I can be in this place right now. As crazy and busy as my life is, I'm happy. And, I'm glad I can run.
posted by lochan | link
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Thursday, October 09, 2008
13 months




The big news is that Britta and Jack are walking! Jack has been taking steps and practicing a lot and we thought he would beat her, but last Saturday, Britta just took off. She still crawls more than she walks, but she is going! Jack is walking 6-10 steps at a time. It's pretty cool to see.

Drake's first word was "mama" and he uses it a lot! Britta says mama and dada, but it's still not totally clear if she's using them in the right way. I swear she said "gooter" to scooter the other day when we were taking a walk. She said it more than once, but I just can't be sure. Jack says "nonononono" when he wants something. They all wave hi and bye and have all known their own names for a few months now.

Drake has 11 teeth and is working on 5 or 6 more. Poor little guy. Jack still has 6 and Britta 8. They've all been extra cranky this week and now David is sick. The boys have runny noses, so I think they have probably been feeling yucky. Maybe I'm getting sick, too, because everything just seems harder this week. Still a million times easier than where we were last year at this time.

Babies are waking.
posted by lochan | link
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Wednesday, October 01, 2008
10 years ago

Two and a half years old

10 years ago Lillie was born. I remember they handed her to me right away (Grace was whisked away and I didn't get to see her for a few minutes) and I remember getting cold while I was holding her. I don't know if it was her or me, but her body temperature was low when they checked her and they needed to take her away to warm her up. David went with while she was in the "french fry machine" as David called it. I wanted to be with her, too, but I was also really tired (I hadn't slept all night) and it was nice just to close my eyes for a while.

My sister-in-law brought my mom and Grace over and it was so nice to see Grace. Except suddenly her four year old self seemed very big next to the new little baby.

We left the hospital the next day and it was so nice to get back home. My mom stayed for probably a week or so. Lillie was such a different baby than Grace. She was just naturally happy and calm and she loved to sleep. Instead of screaming in her carseat, riding in the car just put her to sleep. By the time she was three weeks old she was sleeping from 8 pm to 6 am.

Something about Lille has always just made me laugh. She's just so cute and funny. When her hospital pictures arrived in the mail, her picture just made me laugh. And it surprised me a little because she already looked so different.

The last ten years have been such wonderful years because Lillie's been with us. My pregnancy with her was rough. I had hyperemesis and a bloodclot and there were a few days in the hospital when I wasn't sure if I was going to get to bring this little baby into the world. Or if I was going to get to see Grace grow up. I remember thinking about the possibility of dying and the weird thing was that for myself, I felt peaceful about dying. I looked back on my life and just felt grateful for everything that had happened to me in those 28 years. I didn't think about things I wished that I had done or places I wished that I had wanted to see or anything like that. I was simply thankful. For the family I grew up in, the friends I had made, the places I had been, the man I married and my daughter. I had a lifetime to be thankful for. When I thought of David and Grace - that was where death seemed unthinkable. For that little girl to lose her mom would have been devastating.

I'm so thankful for each day that I've had since then. And, today I am so thankful for Lillie. My smart, sweet, funny, amazing little girl.
posted by lochan | link
2 comments and fresh takes

Name: Laura

I have five kids including triplets. I'm too busy to blog, but I do anyway (uh, sometimes).

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