Sunday, January 30, 2011

Bad Night Hangover

Last night- AWFUL.

Oh my God. I haven't had a night that bad in a while. I don't know if it's so many things building up or what. I laid in bed until after 5 this morning crying at everything. I'm not even sure what brought in on. I was laying in bed, on my side. I rolled over and it's like I could see you there, but it was just empty. Before I knew it the tears were rolling down my face. I was looking at pictures. I can't look at them anymore. To see your smile and how happy we were kills me. I listened to the voice mails in my phone just so I could hear your voice. Just to hear you say "I love you baby." Then I rolled over again and saw that urn with a folded up flag. That's really what I get? Thanks, God.

Then, as previously mentioned, the day after a night like that just isn't good. I'm so tired and out of it. I laid in bed for a majority of the day because I couldn't even function. I slept a lot. Sometimes, like this weekend, I just can't do it. I honestly can't even describe how bad last night was. I was texting people frantically needing someone to listen (which gets rather difficult to find someone awake at 3 am). On the phone at the middle of the night (4 am to be exact) just screaming about everything. I put on my front during the day and I can force a smile for everyone to see. It's nights. Long nights like that that I absolutely dread.

Today I feel defeated. Like the grief and the pain of losing you has consumed my life. I hurt and bad. I know what it is. It's homecoming. I have to go face it and see that you aren't coming home. In a way I've convinced myself that you're coming home in the hearts of those guys. At the same time I'm angry. Angry that I have waited so long for this and it no longer means anything. Jealous that everyone else is happy except me. And just flat out hurt.  

The thing about dealing with this is the pain gets physical. That's whats happening now. It's taking over me to the point where I can't function. I should have known I was in for it when I kept forcing myself to sleep yesterday. I knew what I was in for and as long as I force myself to sleep I can avoid it. Last night there was no avoiding it. It was coming whether I wanted it to or not. I can't focus on school work. Hell, I can't even get out of bed. A lot of people have never felt a pain that's so bad. My heart hurts- literally. It's weird how that pain just takes over your whole body. And what do you do? How in the world do you fix that? (All of you saying time, keep it to yourself at the moment)

Tomorrow is a new day. I have to pick myself up and keep pushing. I know I can do it, but sometimes it just consumes me. I was talking to someone today and they said how much better I have gotten since this happened. I know that's true, it's just so hard to believe that when you have a 48 hours like I just had. If you can see me right now I hope you're not disappointed, but sometimes I can't help it. I just fall apart. I know it breaks your heart to see me cry and to hurt. I try so hard to be strong for you and I can't do it all the time. At least these nights have lessened. Lately though they seem to be getting more frequent.

"You can do it, babe." I know. Sometimes I just feel like I can't physically, mentally, or emotionally handle any more. But in all honestly- I don't have a choice. I need you..

Friday, January 28, 2011

Letting Go

It's Friday night.. so guess what that means babe?  I'm watching Say Yes to the Dress.  I remember when this was my countdown show.  I watched it every Friday night (usually waiting for you) and it just meant another week went by.  I remember watching it late one night waiting for you and Benjamin to get to your house.  You didn't say anything, but as soon as we got in bed you said "don't get any ideas" haha.  Thanks for the reassuring words ass :p  Don't even lie, you started to like my addicting shows.  You can admit it now and I won't tell.

I'm a little sad.  Last night was awful.  Other wids probably know what I am talking about, but the day after a bad night is almost like a "hangover."  I know, it's weird.  With homecoming right around the corner its hitting me like a ton of bricks.  I was looking at pictures and I just cried, and cried, and cried.  I'm so jealous of everyone.  I came across a picture from Aaron and Lauren's wedding.  It reminded me of that day and when we were driving there you grabbed my hand and said, "it won't be long until people are driving to our wedding."  Yup.  Not fair.  Okay I've gotten way off topic..

Alright.  So. We need to revamp the way I've been handling things.  I've said it a million times how much of a planner I am, but the further I get into this journey the more I realize you just can't plan anything.  It doesn't work that way.  As much as I would like to control every aspect of my life it's just not going to happen. Period.  


I saw this quote on a friends wall the other night: 

I believe we write our own stories, and each time we think we know the end - we don't. Perhaps luck exists somewhere between the world of planning, the world of chance, and in peace that comes from knowing you just can't know it all. You know life's funny that way...once you let go of the wheel, you might just end up right where you belong. ♥

Legit.  Ever since then I'm trying to just go with it.  Once you're thrown into this life you can only do things one day at a time.   You can't plan and you have a hard time picturing the future.  A huge part of your future just got ripped out of your life so how can you feel comfortable placing anything in the "future" again.  I need to let go a little.  For once in my life I have to go wherever it takes me and not fight it so much.  Maybe then I'll end up where I'm supposed to be.  

I mean, you know I won't totally give up my planning.  BUT I'm going to try really hard to not rely on it as much.  I can hear it now, "It'll be all right babe." I know, I know.  It just doesn't seem like it right now.  Once homecoming is over with I think it'll start getting a little better.  Right now it's just hanging over my head and I'm so anxious to get it over with.  And you know what?  You won't lead me down the wrong road.  If you do you're in big trouble mister.  

Whatever you do, stay close. I need you with me.  Things are about to get rough and I know that.  I'm going to keep reminding myself to be more like you and just go with it.  Things will happen if they're meant to and if they aren't then they won't.  It's just a really hard concept for me to grasp, but I'm going to work on it.  It just might take some time. Blah. I hate that word, time.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

American Widow Project

Today mine and Josh's story is up on the American Widow Project website.  It doesn't contain much that I haven't already mentioned, but I'm so glad it's there.  I love letting people know our story and it's important to me. 

I haven't been part of this organization for long, but so far I am so glad I found it.  I've met some other widows through them.  It's nice knowing you aren't alone in this life.  People your age going through the same thing.  You have people to lean on that understand everything you're dealing with.  I hope to go on one of their getaways soon to meet some of these other women.  Taryn (the founder) really did something amazing by starting this.  There really is a lack of resources for young military widows.   Places like this make it more bearable and I often find myself going there and reading stories to remind myself I'm not the only person going through this.  I find comfort in that and I'm so thankful that it is there. 

Oh, and I found this on their site.  It's my favorite and completely legit-

Learning to expect the unexpected will help you get through this most painful time in your life. Here are 10 things you need to know if you are to survive.
1. Expect people to say stupid things. “Don’t worry, you’re young, you’ll meet someone new.” No matter your age, this will sting like a hot iron on raw flesh. Your mind is on your husband and preserving His memory. The thought of another man in your life too soon after His death may cause you additional pain.
“I’m sorry for your loss.” If there is a “loss”? This makes you wonder where is found? For the new widow, there is no found.
“He would want you to find a new man.” Hmmm… On this one, this writer takes umbrage. Nobody can tell you what He wanted, except you, nor, should they.
“I understand. I’m divorced.” Not. Divorce is different than death. Though a divorced individual may wish her ex to not be here, it just isn’t the same thing. While divorce can be painful, and having experienced one personally, the death of a soul mate is different, as this writer will attest, there is no connection.
2. Expect to be asked out—by your husband’s best friend.
3. Expect to be asked, “Do you masturbate?” by your best friend.
4. Expect to break down in tears when you least expect it—at the sound of the doorbell, at the sound of the telephone, at the sight of a couple walking hand in hand. All too soon the reality of being without Him sets in and it will take time for you to let go of your past. But you will.
5. Expect to begin each day wondering how you made it though the day before. And end it thinking you just can’t do it any more.
6. Expect to feel weak, strong, suicidal, angry, happy, euphoric, glad, sad, guilty, alone, lonely, trapped, free, tired, bored, overworked, overwhelmed, silly, puzzled, like you don’t belong.
Why not? You have just experienced life at its worst. I’m here to tell you, everything will be okay. Think baby steps. Think, I can and think, I will.
7. Expect all your friends to run away. They’re frightened, too. And they just don’t know how to handle your grief. Seeing you dealing with the death of someone near and dear is just too close for comfort.
8. Expect all your friends to come back. Give them time. The real ones do.
9. Expect to find yourself standing in front of an open refrigerator at 3:00 in the morning studying the expiration date on a bottle of ketchup. Give yourself permission to process your grief any way you need to.
10. Expect to laugh when the dog pees on the living room rug, when the garage door falls off its hinges, when the refrigerator makes a puddle on the kitchen floor, and when the woman next door goes out on a date—with the woman down the street. Your life is forever changed and so is your outlook. In the big picture, these things become miniscule.
11. Expect to wish you were dead.
12. Expect to blame yourself for His death.
13. Expect to ask yourself questions that have no answers. What if? Why me? Why couldn’t I have died first?
14. Expect to make plans to run away.
15. Expect to cancel them, because you realize there is no place to run away to.
16. Expect to kiss a fool.
17. Expect to feel like you cheated. You didn’t.
18. Expect to wish for a giant eraser to erase away all the pain.
19. Expect the pain to never end. It won’t. But in time you will learn how to manage it. I promise.
20. Expect to smile when you feel like crying.
21. Expect to not sleep.
22. Expect to not focus.
23. Expect to not eat. In the beginning you won’t be able to enjoy food. But it is important to drink plenty of fluids. If nothing else, drink water to keep your kidneys flush.
24. Expect to eat too much.
25. Expect to not be in the mood for all the things you once were in the mood for. Imagine. This writer didn’t want to eat chocolate!
26. Expect the sun to come out tomorrow, the daffodils to sprout in spring, every bird on the planet to sing, every oak, elm, and cottonwood to shed its leaves in autumn, the moon to glow, the stars to twinkle, the earth to spin on its axis, and then to wonder why.
27. Expect no one to understand. Though they say, “I understand.” They can’t. They don’t. They never will. Not even another widow. Grief is personal. It’s just like a thumb print, no two alike. Expect to make mistakes.
28. Expect to forgive yourself.
Okay. That’s it. And now I know what you’re thinking – She’s listed more than ten things.
But to make it through your grief, it’s important to realize you are not alone. What you are feeling is normal. Being informed is being prepared. It will help you survive.
Expect the unexpected.
And, like the mighty oak caught in a fierce storm bending in the wind to keep from being uprooted, you will learn to accept your plight. You will learn to remain grounded, and eventually you will be able to turn your upside down world right side up again.
~Linda Della Donna @ www.griefcase.net
Well, my class is about to start.  I just wanted to share all of this with you.  I'll be back very soon I have some thoughts that need to go somewhere :)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Almost there

Homecoming is so incredibly close.  I'm not sure why, but today my stomach is in knots.  I was okay most of the morning because I have three classes in a row and no time to think about it.  Now I'm ridiculously bored at work so what do I do?  Facebook creep.  What is all over the place?  Homecoming excitement.  Fml.

I don't know babe.  A lot of people are making me feel like I shouldn't go.  Maybe they're right.  I don't know if I can do it..

You better find a way to tell me what to do because I'm really starting to back away from going.  It feels like this is "it."

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Changing it Up

So for something different I'm going to write a blog about a fellow wid that I would be absolutely lost without. Seriously. Girl is like long lost sister because we are so much alike it's scary. Today I'm going to tell you her story. I first heard of Ashleigh when a fellow friend of ours, Jill, had asked for prayers when she found out Ashleigh's husband Cody had been killed in Afghanistan. I remember talking with Jill that night, September 1st to be exact.  Actually, as I was speaking with Jill, was probably about the time everything happened with Josh.  Scary much?

Anyways, after the dust settled and I slowly moved out of my fog, I added Ashleigh on facebook.  We exchanged a couple messages and within weeks we were talking every single night.  I love her.  We manage to get through this crazy (life we are forced to live) together.  We constantly ask each other if what we feel is "normal," or if we're being weird, talking about what life may be someday, hoping we'll find happiness, tears, anger, laughter.  All of it.  Did I mention I haven't met her in person yet?  Doesn't even matter.  Besides that is allllll about to change in a few short weeks.  Hello retail therapy!

So here it goes-

Ashleigh met Cody in February of 2009 (the 20th to be exact).  Cody was originally from Idaho, but was stationed in Virgina where Ashleigh lived.  Cody had to of known how amazing this girl was because instead of asking for her number, he stole it!  He wasn't allowing any room for "no."  A few days later, they went out on their first date.  Where to you might ask?  Chuck E Cheese.  If that doesn't say fun and loving, I don't know what does.

 
These two quickly fell in love and weren't about to waste any time.  The MC never fails and Cody left for Camp Lejeune in the spring.  Ashleigh followed and on June 13, 2009 they said "I do and til death do us part."


Later that year, the newlywed couple found out they were adding a new addition to the family.



On May 14, 2010, Baby Colten Roberts made his appearance in the world.



When June 2010 rolled around, it was supposed to be a happy time.  The couple was just about to celebrate their first anniversary and on that very day Cody was set to leave for Afghanistan.  The night before D-day the two celebrated their anniversary.  They didn't shower each other with gifts.  Instead, they exchanged cards, had dinner together, and just enjoyed the time that they had together.  That truly shows the love they had for each other because nothing else was important except for their time spent together.


June 13, 2010- Anniversary and deployment day.  Cody was off to Afghanistan and left Ashleigh caring for their 1 month old son.  She's a tough girl though and Cody reassured her she could do it.  Without question, Cody had a job to do and willingly stepped up to the plate.  Ashleigh was holding down the fort at home with Baby Colten.  Before Cody stepped on the bus he said this, "Lord we love you more than anything. Keep me safe, watch over my family. Put a wall of angels around our home to protect them"


August 31, 2010.  "Til death do us part" came far too soon.  Ashleigh got the knock on the door that no military spouse wants.  She found out that her husband had been killed in Afghanistan.   Thrown into a whirlwind life a widow and single mother.



Ashleigh never asked for this life, but she's a fighter.  Each day is a struggle.  She manages to get through it and be the most amazing mother to that little boy.  She knows the life Cody wants her to live and she is more determined than ever to find that happiness again.  Her and Cody had a love so strong that not even death can break it.  She doesn't have a choice but to live this life and she's going to do it;  she's going to do it for Cody and their son.  Are there days she doesn't want to anymore?  Sure.  However, she never gives up.  That love gives her the strength to fight back against everything that has been thrown at her.  No matter where she goes in life she is always going to feel that love.  She's going to have good days and bad days.  One day she will be happy again.  Cody will make sure of that and he's going to walk by her side each step of the way.  This girl went and welcomed home her husbands fellow Marines/brothers.  Yes, she's that strong and you know that he was with her the entire time.  She continues to make him proud of her each and every day.  He doesn't even need to tell her.  She's amazing and for that reason you should go check her out.  Ashleigh started a blog and it shares her journey on this road.  When Three Becomes Two is her blog.  Follow her and support her.  She's a tough cookie, but encouraging words are always the icing on top. 

One thing I'm thankful for through all of this is finding people like her.  Someone who understands what you're going through.  Someone who listens to all your whack stories and stupid people stories.  Up at the ridiculous hours of the night.  Talking about the future.  Dealing with the pain, laughter, tears, love.  Everything.  I'm so glad I know her and that I'm not going through this alone.  Love you Ash <3

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Readjusting

Well, today is back to the grind.  School started again and I don't know how I feel about it yet.  It's nice having something to do, but at the same time it was good to have some me time.  I needed that.  I needed the break from everything.  I stayed pretty busy over break so I didn't have a ton of time to think.  After last semester I was exhausted mentally, physically, and most definitely emotionally.  However, the past four weeks went way faster than any four weeks during the semester.  I guess it always feels that way.

Right now I just don't feel ready to go back and I don't have a choice.  After this happened I threw myself right back into school only 2 weeks later.  It was probably good that I did, but at the same time I never really got the time to myself to take it all in and grieve a little.  It catches up with me sometimes because it's a constant push between school full time, two jobs, and coaching.  Busy bee I tell ya.

Last night was a pretty rough night.  The crying so hard you feel like your head it just going to explode kinda night.  I felt so alone for the first time in a little while.  Over the weekend, well Friday/Saturday, I had everyone around me.  I was able to relax for a while and just laugh a little and when I needed to cry, someone was there to give me a hug and say it will be okay.  Until I got home I didn't realize how much I missed that in my life.  It makes it a little easier when you have someone there like that.  It took no time for me to realize it either and it made coming home that much harder.  I know I'll be fine and I'm still in that constant adjustment phase, it just bums me out. 

Being alone is not fun whatsoever.  I don't know how people live their entire life alone.  I guess everyone is different, but one thing I have learned is it's definitely not for me.  I can hear it now, "Just relax babe."  I try, I really do, but good God this gets rough.  Not to mention still wanting the past and knowing you can't have it.  I'm still trying to figure my life out and it's a scary thing.  When you have a plan for so long and suddenly you don't know.  Someone told me yesterday, "Dying is the easy part, living is what's hard."  I never thought of that before.  It is true though to an extent.  This is just another obstacle in life (a rather large one) and we have to find ways to overcome it.  I'm still learning and healing everyday.  It's taking its sweet time that's for sure.  I just keep hoping that someday it's going to get better, which reminds me of a Justin Beiber song I heard recently (not usually a fan, but it's pretty legit).



(And i pray)
I just can't sleep tonight,
knowing that things ain't right.
It's in the papers, it's on the TV,
it's everywhere that i go.

Children are crying, soldiers are dying,
some people don't have a home.

But i know there's sunshine behind that rain,
I know there's good times behind that pain (hey)
Can you tell me how i can make a change?

I close my eyes, and i can see a better day,
I close my eyes and pray.

I close my eyes and i can see a better day,
I close my eyes and pray.

I lose my appetite, knowing kids starve tonight
Am I a sinner? Cause half my dinner,
Is still there on my plate.
Ooh i got a vision, to make a difference,
and it's starting today.

Cause i know there's sunshine beyond that rain,
I know there's good times beyond that pain

Heaven tell me i can make a change.

I close my eyes, and i can see a better day,
I close my eyes and pray.

I close my eyes and i can see a better day,
I close my eyes and

I pray for the broken-hearted,
I pray for the life not started.
I pray for all the ones not breathing,
I pray for all the souls in need.
I pray, can you give em one today?

I just can't sleep tonight,
Can someone tell me how to make a change?

I close my eyes, and i can see a better day,
I close my eyes and pray, (Ooh)
I close my eyes and i can see a better day,
I close my eyes and i pray, (ooh)
I pray, I pray
I close my eyes and pray

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Flashbacks

On Thursday I made the 12 hour drive to Savannah and another 3.5 yesterday to Atlanta.  I wish it wasn't for this reason, but I attended the funeral of Ryan Giese.  It was a beautiful ceremony and it really hit home.  My heart breaks for his wife, Brittany, and his family.  As I watched all of this again I felt those memories and pain; it came flooding back to me.  The viewing, procession, funeral, cemetery, all of it.  The people close to me know that I don't remember much about those 72 hours, but what I did remember was hitting hard the last two days.  I wanted to go there and be strong- epic fail.  Between my own whack emotions and what I felt for that family it was close to disaster.  Lucky for me though I have a strong support system and they got me through it. 

Today during the procession I looked at the cars, the people pulled over in their cars or standing on the streets, the cops holding traffic, and it gave me goosebumps.  I remember that same feeling from 4 months ago.  That crazy sense of pride that you feel even when you're surrounded in so much pain.  It's something that is almost indescribable, but every other widow knows exactly what I'm talking about.  As tragic as they are, military funerals are absolutely beautiful.  I just wish that more people didn't have to live through this pain everyday.  Hearing the 21 gun salute and taps and watching them hand over those folded up flags was like a knife in my stomach.   By that point, I wasn't sure I could take anymore.  When you're going through something so awful, it kills you to watch it happening to someone else knowing there is nothing that you can do to make it any better for them. 

While I was there I met some people.  This line is a common one I get these days, "I don't know how you do it."  My response?  "Because I don't have a choice."  I have to live this life whether I like it or not.  I can't change it.  However, I have two options.  1.  Be a hermit hating life, alone, and miserable.  2. Live life the way Josh would want me to, learning to live and love again.  At first I was all about number one.  I quickly realized there is no freaking way that I am doing that forever.  I don't want to do that either.  I have such a longing to be happy again.  I truly believe that Josh will make sure that I am happy and that someone will love me and take care of me and not push Josh out of my life.  I will never replace him or forget him or move on without looking back, but things will be different.  Baby steps, Chrissy, baby steps.

Lastly- my support system.  My Marine family.  I have someone there for me 24/7 no matter what.  I can text them to complain/cry/bitch/laugh etc. or when I need some good entertainment (they are pretty good at that).  The last 48 hours they stayed by my side, hugged me when I needed it, and gave me a shoulder to cry on.  I let these people into my life so quickly and have gotten amazingly close to them.  I will say it a million times over how thankful I am for them.  Even though losing Josh was awful, this is one little glimpse of hope.  When Josh left this earth, I lost my rock.  The one person that got me through everything.  Lucky for me a couple people stepped into that role and I can never thank them enough for doing that.  They are pulling me through the hardest time in my life.  I know for a fact part of the reason I am doing better each day is because of them.  It really is an amazing thing and I wish I could find the words to describe it better.  Remember that void I talked about?  It's slowly being filled by these people.  I also wish that more people could experience this.  It's a crazy thing that you could never understand unless you were a part of it.  The way everyone comes together is really something.   We went out last night and it was a lot of fun.  I could listen to their ridiculous drunk stories all night.  Although, letting a drunk marine convince the designated drivers to take them to a strip club recommended by the waiter as landmark in Atlanta was not a smart idea.  Just sayin' :)

Moral of the story- a lot of previous emotions came back into my life the past two days.  I miss him so much and my heart still hurts.  I felt that pain again and I kept seeing images from September.  At the same time, I'm slowly taking little steps forward and I have some amazing people by my side getting me through it.  How is Josh still with me?  He gave me these people to fill that space and make sure that I'm okay.  It's a crazy thing..

Monday, January 10, 2011

Nocturnal

That's me!  I swear I haven't gone to bed earlier than 1 am in months.  It nearly seems impossible and it's almost expected for me to be up to weird hours every single night.  Over break it's been rather nice because  I make up for it in the mornings.  However,  I'm not real happy that it is 2 am and I have to be up at 7 to work on campus.  Doesn't help my cause that I am pulling a double tomorrow.  Blah!

It has to be a widow thing.  I'm usually up talking to Ashleigh and when I look at who is online, the other widsters are on there too.  The things I would do to go to bed at a normal hour.  Nyquil is even failing me these days.  I planned on going to bed hours ago.  Instead- I cleaned my room (which you know was a disaster, my Nana will be proud) and put 8 care packages together.  Time was well spent, but I am going to be super grouchy in the morning.  Oh and I'm on a diet so that means no Starbucks for me :( Boo.

Today was an "okay" day.  They aren't as few and far between these days.  It's kinda nice actually to feel not so bad everyday.  I'm starting to regain some normalcy and adjusting to this new life.  I was talking to someone earlier and I can't live in that miserable/alone/sadness every single day.  It's awful and draining.  They say happiness is a choice and I believe that to a certain extent.  I'm working on things and focusing on me for the first time in a while.  I have learned when to expect my bad days (2's and Thursdays) so I make sure I'm plenty busy on those days.  Now it's just the random reminders and breakdowns that get me.  I'm trying to look at things in a positive light and it does help.  Obviously nothing is going to make it go away.  It will forever be with me- every single day of my life.  I never stop thinking about it.  I thought about you a lot today.  I had a dream about you last night and I remember at first you were screwing around being your normal self and I remember saying "Josh you know we don't have a lot of time.  I need to know what you want me to do."  You said a few things, but the important one, "Chrissy, I want you to do whatever makes you happy."

I woke up happy this morning after that.  I know you want me to be happy and you wouldn't want me living my life like a miserable prude everyday.  This is a very very long journey and I am nowhere near the end.  I am, however, making progress and taking little baby steps.   I thought about you a lot today.  I miss you more and more each day.  I know that you live on in my heart and memories and you will make sure that I'm happy again.  You never liked to see me sad or hear me cry.   In 2011 I'm going to try working on that.  When you hit rock bottom you can only go up, right?  So, up up and away we go.

I was feeling guilty about my okay or good days, but I don't anymore.  I know that's what you would want me to do and if we were in each others places I would want the same for you.  I'm still so heartbroken that we can't have the life that we planned.  I wish so badly I could take the past back and I would do it in a second.  But I'm currently picking up the tiny pieces of my broken heart and putting it back together- slowly, but surely. 

Well.  Two doubles in two days will be fun.  It'll be well worth it though.  Weather permitting I'll be on my way south of the mason dixon for the funeral of the Marine mentioned in the previous blog.  It'll be nice to get away, but I wish it was for better circumstances.  I wanted to share with you a part of the letter that I got from this Marine a few weeks back.. (I looked frantically for this letter all day Saturday and was in tears when I thought I lost it.  I did end up finding it and I'm so glad that I did.)

Remember, if you're ever down in the dumps just pray and God will take care of you, just as he does for all of his children.

He was right.  I'm a fighter and I'm going to make it; with God's help and my friends and family.    Most importantly, help from you.  Love you <3

Edit:  In response to a comment- I understand there are other branches risking their lives, but this blog is about my life with the Marine Corps and that is my main focus.  I'm not leaving them out on purpose or down grading them by any means.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Why?

The question that I continually ask myself and even more so today.  Why me? Why the other widows?  Why good men?  A few hours ago I got word of another 2/9 Marine who has gone to guard the streets of Heaven.  I got a letter from him a few weeks ago.  He was thanking me for the care packages and telling me how sorry he was about Josh.  He passed on his wife's contact information and told me to let him know if I needed anything.  Told me he would see me upon his return to the states.

Why did this happen to him?

His poor wife just got dealt the shittiest hand.  She's going to live this crap life and be tagged "war widow."  I don't know how many times I refer to myself as one only for people to say "Ew, I hate that"  Well you know what?  It's reality and a harsh one.  There are so many of us out there with that damn tag and not a single one of us asked for this life.  No one should have to go through this because it's damn hard.  Every single day is a fight.  She's going to have to struggle each day to keep herself going.  She's going to miss him and wonder why.  She's going to be in a fog for weeks and then reality will hit.  She's going to cry and be angry all in the same minute.  She's going to hurt more than any other person could understand unless they were going through it too.  And you know what?  I bet you anything she doesn't deserve it.

Why does God keep taking these men?  Enough is enough already.  I NEVER wanted Josh to die, but my God if it happened now I don't know what I would do.  Being less than 2 months in wasn't great either, but I would die if it happened within weeks of homecoming.  You have all of the excitement around you and make preparations for their arrival only for this to happen?  THIS ISN'T FAIR!  How many wives are going on without husbands?  Children without fathers?  Parents without children? None of it is fair.  I wish it would all go away.

When I finally made the connection of who it was I just cried.  Cried for him, his wife, and family.  Cried because it reopened the wound of those feelings.  Cried because I know what she's going to have to do in a few days.  It hurts.  It's such an indescribable pain and I can't handle hearing about more of these men dying.  It breaks my heart all over again.  Is it ever going to end?  One was one too many and it's what fifteen now?  That's ridiculous.  It may not seem like a lot, but that is fifteen families that have to live through a nightmare.  A nightmare that so many people hope and pray that they never have to live.

Not to mention what it does to their fellow Marines/brothers.  They will live with this for the rest of their lives.  I tell you what Marines are special people for everything they do and knowing what it does to them.  Everyone thinks when they get home it's all "good in the hood."  Wrong.  I remember the struggles Josh had after Iraq and you know its going to be twice as bad with the guys coming home from Afghanistan.  They're going to struggle mentally and emotionally with this for who knows how long.  The pain of losing a brother.  They really are a family and losing a fellow Marine is a hard hit.  The guys who are discharged that found out are just as devastated.  This battalion is one big family and it hits everyone involved.  I'm sure there is some idiot saying "thank God it's not me," but you know that its one hell of a hit on everyone- Marines, wives/girlfriends/fiances, moms, dads, brothers, sisters, sons, daughters.  Everyone.

American Citizens- I sure hope you thank God everyday for the freedoms you have and for those that give their lives so you have them.  Take a second and think about it.  Be thankful for what you have and for the brave men that gave you that right.  Don't EVER take that freedom for granted.  Ever.

Even though Josh isn't here I still have this Marine family to lean on.  We'll all get through it together and will forever have a bond.  This deployment is one for the books and one that none of us will ever forget.

Ryan- Rest in Peace Marine, you've done your job well.
"If the Army and the Navy ever look on Heaven's scenes, they will find the streets are guarded by United States Marines."


My prayers go out to his wife Brittany and all of his family and friends.  Stay strong 2/9.

Gearing Up

For the last (at least I hope so) big bump in the road- homecoming.  Advon arrived back and it hurt more than I realized.  Allllllll of these statuses and updates took over my news feed and it broke my heart.  I can tell how excited everyone is and it's getting so close.  I want to be excited. I want to be making homecoming signs. I want to go shopping for a new outfit.  I want to feel that nervous excited.  BUT I don't feel any of it.  No signs. No new outfit. No good feelings.  Nothing.

I am going to go.  I don't know how I will react other than tears.  I need to prepare myself mentally to go through it.  I know that it won't be easy, but I have to go.  If I don't I can keep convincing myself that you're just away.  You would want me to go and I think you'll be proud of me if I do.  I fully intend on making a friend of yours go with me.  I can't be alone and I need them to be there.  All be darned if I'm going to watch all of these girls run to their boyfriends/fiances/husbands and stand there alone.  Not going to happen.  Someones gotta take one for the team and let me cry with them.

Other than all of the crap feelings, I'm excited to see your friends.  To be close to them, talk to them.  I think it'll help.  Maybe after all of this I'll have a little feeling of peace or closure.  What do I feel now?  A lot of pain and anger.  I'm so happy for everyone, but it almost eats me alive.  Seeing everyone so happy and excited and knowing they are getting their guys back hurts so bad.  Don't get me wrong, I am happy for them.  At the same time- It makes me bitter, jealous, and angry.  I hate that I have those feelings.  That I block my news feed so I can't see things anymore and push away every sign of happy homecomings.  I want a happy homecoming too and I'm not going to get it.  What did I ever do to not deserve it? Cause I know of people cheating and doing allllll kinds of crap back here that they shouldn't be and they're getting their homecoming.  Why is that?  I swear to God some people ask for this life and the ones that have to live it sure as hell don't deserve it.

I would give anything to feel this again..
[Photos Courtesy of Jill Mills]




















I just want to feel that again.  To be back in your arms.


Completely and totally heartbroken..

Saturday, January 1, 2011

2011

Happy five years :)
I knew I was going to be spending this one alone, but not like this.  When we brought in 2010 I had no idea it would be our last.  I remember that night and my mouth was still fat and sore from getting my wisdom teeth out.  So instead of going out you stayed on the couch with me all night.  I'm so glad you did.  I drank one or two, okay quite a few for you haha.

I have mixed feelings on this year.  As soon as the ball dropped, I instantly burst into tears.  It wasn't even controllable at that point.  It was so weird and so bittersweet going into a new year.  I was happy, excited, nervous, sad, alone, and a million other emotions all at the same time.

2011 was supposed to be a good year for us.  A lot of things were supposed to happen and they aren't now.  It makes me sad and angry.  We've waited for this year for so long and it doesn't even mean anything now.  It's like I'm starting a new chapter on my own.  It breaks my heart doing it without you.  2011 is a year you won't get to see. 

At the same time I'm excited and nervous.  As I stood with my friends and tears in my eyes I heard, "you made it girl, it's a new year."  They were right.  I made it.  It's a new start for me.  As much as I wish you could be here and we could have our plans back- we can't.  I'm going to make this year about me.  Focus on what makes me happy.  First on my list is losing the mass amount of weight that I have gained since September.  After that, I'm not real sure.  I still have some exciting things- my 21st birthday, my last semester of classes, and I'm sure there's more that I just can't think of at the moment.

It's hard and scary to feel like I'm taking a step forward, but I know in my heart that I have to.  If I don't I'll never be happy again.  I don't want to be miserable everyday.  I have to start somewhere and it's time to take a baby step.  I may take a step back again, actually I'm sure I will, but I have to try. 

I'm not sure what 2011 really has in store for me.  It has to be better than 2010 though that is for sure.  I'm trying something new- just going with it.  Focusing on making me happy.  Who knows- maybe after that someone will love me again.  I most definitely still have lots of hurdles to overcome, but hopefully as the time passes I'll find a way to be happy again.  To regain faith, love, and trust.  My motto for this year..

"All you need is faith, trust, and a little bit of pixie dust." - Peter Pan

I'm going to do this.  I swear I'm going to make it. 

And I'm going to do it all for you <3