Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from April, 2011

Me and Maddy

Today, we hopped in the van with Billy, Abbey, Maddy and Pace and headed to Hugh and Billy’s parents.There were 7 of us.It was nice to be able to car pool with them, but it was another reminder that Tripp isn’t with us.If we had him, we wouldn’t have been able to take one vehicle.
I miss my baby today.I always miss him—but today I feel a little lonelier for him than usual.Family functions are hard.When our whole family is together it feels more apparent to me that Tripp is missing.
I admire how wonderful Billy is with Pace and when I see how wonderful he is it makes me sad for Hugh.Hugh is wonderful with babies, too.
I think one of my favorite moments today was spending a few moments of one-on-one time chatting with Maddy.We have been so fortunate to get to spend a lot of time with her over the past 2 months, but I think today was the first time I just got to talk to her alone.I loved it.

Tidbits

On Saturday, I blogged about having a hard time on the monthly anniversaries of Tripp's death.  I had done a bit of reading in one of my bereaved parent books and didn't see anything about it.  Since that post, I have spoken to a number of people who have lost a love one and ALL say that for the first year they recognized their love one's death on a monthly basis.  I feel incredibly comforted knowing that others have felt the same way I do.
* * *
I got a huge response from my post Taking Action.  It was so cool to see how important taking action is to so many other people.  My Auntie Pat let me know that next week is Canadian Children's Book Week.  This year's theme is changing the world one child at a time.  She sent me one of her favorite quotes that they are using in in their promotional material; "You must be the change you wish to see in the world." --Mahatma Gandhi. * * * Yesterday, near the end of our session with our counselor, Brad, we started to tal…

Strong

Today is the day I am going to talk about being strong.  I say it like that, because since I had Tripp, dozens of people have complemented me on my strength and it has been on my "to write about" list for almost 2 months.

Today my perspective and thoughts on being strong changed--which is why today is a fitting day to write about it.   Here's where I was at before today. . .

The first time I began thinking about being strong was right after Tripp's funeral.  We were standing around and people were coming by to pay us their respects.  Over and over, people were saying, "you are so strong".  My immediate thought was no, I'm not.  No, I'm not. NO I'M NOT.

In the next few weeks, I got more emails, cards, and words about how strong I was.  I felt uncomfortable with it.  It would be one thing for someone to compliment me on having a good ball game, or being a good teacher.   I believe those things, so I am flattered when someone says them to me and fe…

Taking Action

Just before Abbey emailed me her blog post, she sent me an email talking about some of my recent posts.  In there she said, "as much as I miss Tripp and question why, I am going to live my life so that one day I can hold him in Heaven."

I always wanted to live a good life and be a good person, but just like Abbey, I now have increased motivation to do this.  Tripp's life -- is reminding me to live a good life -- to be more conscious of the choices I make and the things I do.

Last year, Hugh showed me a video called, The Story of Stuff.  It is about 20 minutes long and it talks about the waste we throw out from our home and all of the waste that is created making all of the things we buy.  At the time, Hugh had to nag me a bit to take the time to watch it, but I am so glad he did.  It really made me think.

I have always valued recycling and when the opportunity came for us to get curbside recycling, Hugh and I paid the $180 a year to do it.  It is amazing how little waste we…

Guest Blog - Abbey

Today, my sister-in-law Abbey is guest blogging.  She married Hugh's brother Billy last summer.  She has a daughter, Maddy (7 years), and a son, Pace (4.5 months).  Abbey and Billy live in Saskatoon. 


There are both no words and not enough words to describe how I feel about my nephew Tripp. I miss him more than I could have ever imagined missing someone. In the 10 minutes I spent with him I fell in love with that little boy.

Promise(s) to my Nephew 

I promise to be there for your mom when she needs me
I promise to be there for your dad when he needs me
I promise to hug your big brother everytime I see him
I promise to take care of Pace and Madison no matter how sad I feel
I promise to love your Uncle Billy until the day I am no longer here
I promise to try to stop feeling guilty
I promise to try not to be sad everyday
I promise to laugh every chance I get
I promise to honor you any way I can
I promise to talk about you
I promise to think about you everyday and never forget how special you we…

Getting into Shape - Week 2

Yesterday, I completed week 2 of the Bridge City Boogie Beginner Run 5K Program.  I am really proud of myself.  My intension last week was to run Monday, Wednesday, Friday, but I had a bad day Monday (April 18) and so I ran Tuesday and Thursday instead.  Then, I didn't feel like running on Saturday (April 23), so I ran on Sunday instead.  I had a very emotional week, but stuck to my goal of running 3 days and I am really happy about it.

After I had Calder, it seemed like everything just went back to where it was supposed to go.  This time I have not been as lucky.  I think it is going to take a lot more work to get my body back and I am beginning to be okay with that.   In hopes of helping along the process, I started doing a bit of abdominal training.  At my 6 week postpartum appointment, my doctor gave me a few exercises to activate my abs and I did a good job of following her advice for about a week. . .

Today, I have decided I am going to try and do a 5 minute abdominal workou…

Easter

Yesterday, we had a full house.  It reminded me of when Tripp died.  Wait. . . Yesterday, everything reminded me of Tripp, but our house was still fairly full.

My whole family was present (minus Luke's girlfriend) and we also had Abbey (Hugh's brother's wife) and their two kids out (Billy is away working).  It was really nice.  We had chicken and steak and although that would not be considered a typical Easter dinner, it was divine!
My mom had bought some stuff for the kids to color eggs, so before we headed to the park, Mom and Jes gave Calder and Maddy a hand with the decorating (FYI--do not use the plastic glasses used for coloring eggs to store your contact lenses.  Your lenses may change colors--ask Jes). 
This morning we headed to the zoo.  Notice the cat in the bottom two pictures.  My friends, Kerri, Twyla, and I went to the zoo a couple of weeks ago and the zoo cat hopped in Kerri's stroller and let her push it around for about 10 minutes.  Today, it jumped in o…

Ritual?

Today, it has been 2 months.

Last night, I laid in bed reliving our last moments with Tripp.  I had a really difficult time falling asleep and eventually had to just make myself stop thinking.  I said, "goodnight" to Tripp and told him I loved him and then was forced to shut my brain off by sheer exhaustion.

I am currently in my sanctuary.  Today is hard.  I haven't needed my sanctuary that much in the past few weeks, but I need it today.

As I laid in my room, I started reading The Grieving Garden by Suzanne Redfern and Susan K. Gilbert which was given to me by my friend, Kyla.  It contains anecdotes from 22 parents who have lost children. Today, I flipped to the section on marking anniversaries.  I felt comforted by what these parents are doing to mark the anniversaries.  Most of the parents speak about how they celebrate their children's birthdays and grieve on their death day.

I know that Tripp's 1st birthday, February 18, 2012, will have significant meaning …

Good Friday

I forgot it was Good Friday.  I'm not working and so all the days seem to run together.  My mom and dad are here, so this morning I actually thought it was Saturday.  I even cursed the paperboy for not delivering the Star Phoenix when I got up shortly after 7 am.

Today is the day Christians commemorate the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ.  I am finding that I am asking myself, "why did Jesus have to die for MY sins to be forgiven?"  Why couldn't God just forgive me?

* * *
I still feel that it wasn't fair that Tripp died.

Jesus had parents who loved Him.  Did they feel that it wasn't fair for Him to die?  Or did they understand the bigger picture. . . that Jesus had to die for us to be saved?

I still don't understand why Jesus had to die, though. . . because God said so?
* * *
I have googled a number of things.  Good Friday, Jesus death, even, why did Jesus have to die.  The best website I found to answer my question is here.  And, although, it says…

Mommy Diaries - Jordan

Today, I am honored to be the mom portrayed in Deena's Mommy Diaries.  This morning when I read it, I started crying.  The words Deena used to describe me and our friendship were truly touching.  Interestingly, I got one of my favorite moments with Calder as I was reading it.  He came over, sat on my lap, and gave me a hug as I cried.

I think the best part was how she included Tripp.  I like that she chose footprints to portray both Tripp and Calder.  It's not a picture of them together, because we don't have one of those, but it is a representation of both my sons.  I like how, clearly and simply, it shows their similarity.  They have both left marks on our hearts.

Check out Deena's post here.  I also encourage you to read about some of the other amazing moms that Deena has showcased.

Before and After

The first few times I talked to people after Tripp died, it felt like I mentioned him every time I said something.  It didn't matter what the conversation was about.  I managed to slip in Tripp's name.  I would come home and feel bad for referring to him so much.  I thought my friends and family might think it was weird that I was always bringing him up.  I also wondered if bringing up Tripp made people feel uncomfortable or awkward.  I didn't want my friends to feel these things, but I couldn't stop myself from mentioning him.

Recently, I have realized that I use Tripp as a marker on my timeline of the past few months.  I refer to things as "before Tripp" or "after Tripp".  This is how I get to bring him up.


We were thinking about a getting a new vacuum before Tripp died (really it was before Christmas).Last night was the first time I drove the car since before Tripp died (really it was since I stopped teaching). Oh and I might add for those of you…

Spirituality

Today, I watched an episode of Oprah that I hadn't seen and didn't really want to watch.  Oprah's guest was Shirley MacLaine.  She is an older actress and I recognized her face.  She has been in over 60 movies, even won an oscar, but I can't tell you what any of the movies are called.  I didn't think anything about Shirley MacLaine would interest me, but I couldn't have been more wrong.


Shirley MacLaine and Oprah talked a lot about spirituality and I even re-watched a few parts, because I was so intrigued by their discussion.


I found this on Shirley MacLaine's website:


Webster defines spiritual as, "of the spirit or the soul, as distinguished from the body." We know the body. The body is solid and tangible. We know the mind and pride ourselves on being able to learn, to think and to rationalize.  


The spirit is the direct connection to the Divine. It is the cohesive sum and substance of who and what we really are; an energy that is harmonious with the…

April 18

Today, Tripp would have been 2 months.

I went over to my friend, Kerri's this morning and when she asked me how I was doing today, I didn't need to explain why.  She knew.  It made me feel good to have this anniversary remembered by her.

The anniversaries are hard, but they are good too.  I know that as more time passes, the more I will heal.  Today I don't have my baby in my arms, which hurts, but I have survived the hardest two months of my life and that is good.

I reread my post from March 18 and I remember that day.  I remember how I felt.  I don't feel the same today and I am glad for that.

Zoo (minus the lions)

This morning, Hugh, Calder, and I headed to the zoo.  It was a bit cool (we even saw a few flakes of snow), so we bundled up.

We were barely through the gate and Calder picked up some wet snow, threw it as hard as he could, and started chanting, "mitts off."  His mini-glove mitts were soaked.  Luckily, we had a dry pair of mitts with us, so we were able to take off the wet ones and put on some dry ones.

No word of a lie -- As soon as he had his dry mitts on, Calder took 3 giant steps, toe-picked and ended up on all fours in a puddle that was about 3 inches deep.  He stood up, shook his hands (water went flying) and headed toward the fox enclosure without saying a word.  Hugh and I almost died laughing.  Luckily, we had put on some thicker mitts and although they were soaked on the outside, the water didn't penetrate the inside.

We walked by the foxes, wolves, and some roosters.  Calder then took a turn toward a gigantic puddle and started splashing around.  We knew that…

Running

Last year, at about this time, I started the Bridge City Boogie training program that was in the Star Phoenix.  I did the beginner run 5 km training and absolutely loved it.  It is a walk to run interval program and by the end of the 9 weeks I was up to running for 5 minutes, walking for 2 minutes (and I repeat this 5 - 7 times).  At that time, I had thoughts of continuing to increase my running time, but I chose not to.  I really liked doing the run for 5 walk for 2, so I just kept doing it.

I was so proud of my accomplishment.  I have never been able to run for any sort of extended periods of time and so doing this program for the 9 weeks was a significant accomplishment for me.   It felt so good to be active and in great shape that I continued to run all through the summer. I stopped in the fall, only because I was feeling so tired being back at work pregnant.   Then I started getting braxton hicks contractions (the less activity I do, the less braxton hicks I have), so running wa…

Laughter

I have never experienced sorrow like this before.  I didn't really know what it meant to grieve.  I obviously know people who have died, but when I think back to the grief I felt when they passed, it feels significantly different than this.  I think I was grieving more for someone else's loss than I was grieving for my own loss.

For example, when I was in university, my best friend's younger brother died.  Her brother's funeral was the first funeral I ever attended.  I took this loss very hard.  I was completely saddened that he died, but I didn't hang out with her brother and so I didn't miss him as part of my everyday life.  I was mostly sad for my friend.  She lost her brother and I couldn't begin to even imagine how that felt.  I grieved for her loss.  
When my Grandpa Fritshaw died I definitely felt some sadness for myself.  My kids would never meet this wonderful man and I would tremendously miss playing cards with him.  But to be truthful, most of my s…

Do a Breast Self Exam

Lisa Rendall passed away yesterday.  She was part of the morning radio show on C95 when I moved to Saskatoon and more recently has devoted much of her time to raising funds for Breast Cancer research.  This morning, I spent some time reading her blog.  She is a really good writer and talks very candidly about her battle with Breast Cancer.

I remember listening to her on the radio this year during the Breast Cancer Marathon on C95.  She said she was sick again.  She even sounded sick.  I was very sad when I heard the news of her death this morning.  I felt disconcerted that someone who was doing so much for the community I live in had to die.  I also wondered what her last moments were like and I thought about our last moments with Tripp.

Lisa Rendall often talked about the importance of early detection, so after I laid Calder down for his nap, I did a self breast exam.  I have a doctors appointment in a couple weeks so, I will get my doctor to do one as well.

* * *
Today, Calder and I …

Vacation From Sadness

Yesterday was a good day. . .Until about 7:45 pm.  Hugh had just put Calder to bed and we sat down on the couch to watch some t.v.  I went from happy to sad in about 3 minutes.  And on top of being sad, I felt grumpy, too.  Hugh asked me what was wrong and I didn't even feel like opening my mouth to tell him.  That is how crabby I felt.  Eventually, I just blurted out, "I am tired of being sad."

As I laid in bed I began to think of what it would be like to not be sad.  I began to think about what it would be like if I could have a vacation from sadness--even just for a day or two.

You know that feeling you have when you need a vacation from work?  Even if you love your job, you begin to feel agitated and even annoyed at having to get out of bed and head there each morning.  Last night, this is how I felt about sadness.  I was just ready for a break from it.

When I have a break from work, I really take it.  Hugh and I make a pact not to talk about work for a set amount of…

Favor

Almost a week ago, my friend, Deena, sent a bunch of her "mom" friends an email asking us to do her a favor.  Deena had the brilliant idea to get all of her "mom" friends to write about different aspects of being a mom.  She is featuring each of the moms' responses on her blog, together with a picture.  She is calling these the Mommy Diaries and will be posting them from now until Mother's Day in honor of all of the moms she loves.  Feel free to check out the first submitter's responses on Deena's blog.   I knew as soon as she sent the email that I wanted to respond, but the questions are hard and I wasn't sure how or what to respond to some of them.  Today is the day I am going to gather the courage to really think about what it is to be Jordan the Mom.  Here are the questions Deena posed:

Highlight of motherhood.Hardest part of being a mom.Your best piece of advice (on mothering. Or anything, I guess)Best product for kids that you have (could b…

Photography

Yesterday was a good day.  In fact, Hugh thought it was so good that I think he said, "today is a great day!" about 7 or 8 times.  We spend the day at home with lots of time outdoors.  Calder loves it and although you can't tell from the pictures it was really nice out.  

 In these shots, I was playing around without using a flash.  I am not sure if I like them.  The sun looks cool, but Hugh and Calder are so dark.  At least you can't see that Hugh is wearing the bright green pants I hate.



This is the park at the end of our crescent.  We are so lucky to have it so close.

Below is probably one of the deepest puddles we have seen all year.  I am racing after Calder to get him to slow down.  If he trips, he would be totally submerged!

Calder and I watching some dummy in a jeep sloshing through the mud in the back alley.  

My butt looks a little closer to the water in this shot than I thought it was at the time!


 I played around a bit with the contrast in this photo.  I think …

Acknowledging Tripp

After supper last night, I should have gotten directly up and went to the shower to get ready for the wedding reception we had to attend.  Instead, I went to the couch and grabbed our 2009 photo album that was on the coffee table and Calder and I started flipping through.  I didn't feel like living in 2011 in that moment.  Once we were finished looking the album, Calder said he wanted to watch the "puter."  There are a couple of 5 minute videos we occasionally watch with him on the computer.  I didn't feel like sitting at the table, so I threw in a Thomas the Train movie and laid on the couch.  Calder knew I was sad and came over and laid himself on my chest.  This is RARE.  So rare that Hugh grabbed the camera and snapped a picture.  Calder's love didn't cure my sadness, but it did give me enough strength to hop in the shower and get ready without starting to cry.
I was mostly stressed about attending the reception, but I was also stressed getting ready.  All…

Sad Day

I have had almost a weeks worth of pretty good days, so it was only inevitable that I was going to have a sad day sooner or later.  That day is today.

I think it actually started last night.  We got a sitter and met Hugh's brother, Billy, and his wife, Abbey, at the Keg for supper.  Everything was perfect, great food and even better company.  I just kept finding my mind and eyes wander over to the table where I sat at the last time I was at the Keg.  In late January, Hugh and I went to the Keg with my sister, Jes, her boyfriend, Nate, my brother, Luke, and his girlfriend, Brittany.  I kept thinking about how I felt that night.  I was wearing my very favorite pregnancy outfit and I even brought out a pair of heels for the occasion.  We had so many laughs and we talked about how our world was going to change with 2 little ones to chase after.  I found myself wishing I could go back to that night.  I was still pregnant then.  I still had Tripp.

I only let my mind wander for brief mo…

The Depth of Understanding?

I had quite an emotional day yesterday.

Hugh and I have talked a lot about how much or how little Calder really understands.  He is a child and a young one at that.  We feel like he knows that something happened, but how deep his knowledge and understanding goes is really unknown.

The grade 2 class at Hugh's school made cards for us and we got them in the mail before Hugh went back to work.  They were so cute.  Many had balloons on the front and had messages asking Hugh to come back to school. . . they missed him.  The cards were thoughtful.  Many said, "I'm sorry."  Hugh and I briefly talked about how much a 7 year old would really understand, but I didn't take time to think about it.  In fact, it just dawned on me that I have a niece in grade 2.  I  have been so caught up in my own feelings that I haven't even asked my sister-in-law, Abbey, how Maddy is doing.  Hmmm. . .

Yesterday, Hugh brought home a book where each of his grade 8 students wrote him a mess…

Thursday

I have made it to Thursday.  I am over half way through my first week without Hugh and it is going much better than I ever thought it would.  I haven't done it alone.  Calder and I have had friends and family keeping us busy all week.

I am finally enjoying being outside.  Our counselor told me that I HAD to get outside everyday the first time we met with him.  I didn't listen.  I didn't care how good it would make me feel.  It was cold and I just didn't want to.  We saw him again last Wednesday and once again he said I HAD to get outside and I actually think I have been out everyday since then.  It seems like I am more motived to comply, now.  The warm weather makes such a difference.  (I pulled Calder's rubber boot off yesterday and mud sprayed all over my floor and all over my wall in the entrance way!  Apparently, it isn't enough to have a boot full of water, there needs to be mud in there as well!)

My sleeping isn't getting any better.  I am sleeping w…

My First Lesson From Tripp

When we first started our journey with Tripp, Hugh and I received dozens of calls and emails from friends and family sending us messages of strength and support.

In the days after Tripp passed away, we had visitors, food, and gifts to go along with the increasing number of phone calls and emails.  We needed the support of those around us to help us through our most difficult days.  We were bombarded and overwhelmed with the support.  It was exactly what we needed.

In the following weeks, we continued to get emails daily and sympathy cards would arrive in the mail on a daily basis.  We weren't bombarded anymore, but instead we were getting daily messages of support.  This is exactly what we needed, daily reminders that were were in someone's thoughts and prayers.

Next Monday will be two months since Tripp was born.  We are still getting messages, but we have the odd day that we don't get one.  This is exactly what we need now.  When Tripp first died I was fearful that not …

Outdoors, Sleeping, and the Value of Teachers

I have decided it is best to be busy with Calder in the morning and that getting out of the house is what is best for both of us.  Calder is missing Hugh and he battles me when he is like this.  I am missing Tripp, which makes the outdoors good for me.  So, yesterday, Kerri, Dylan, Calder and I went to Richie Bros. Auctions to look at all of the machinery they have in their yard.  If you have a boy who likes "mighty machines", you should really take them there in the next couple of days (they have a sale on Thursday and after that the equipment will slowly leave the yard).  You will see farm equipment, semis, skid steers, front end loaders, golf carts and much, much more!  Today, Kerri, Dylan, my friend Twyla, her daughter Sydney, Calder and I went to the zoo.  The animals are quite active right now and we got a close up look today a the bears, female lion and some buffalo.  I think the buffalo's head was bigger than all three kids put together!  I would highly recommend…