Last week TN Wife, this week MR

I feel like I can write so much more freely as mommy rhetoric than I can as anyone else. It is me. Most people who know me know I am mommy rhetoric, my students know as mommy rhetoric (said as retorerick) and my family knows me as such.

I am sure you have figured by now I am crazy busy with my own school, my job school and my three beautiful girls. All three who are doing amazing. Work is good. I am absolutely in love with the classes that I am teaching this year. Life is good.

But then there is my other life,  I am a TN wife. That means on a daily basis my conversations consist of TN. I watch my husband suffer from a disease that takes its toll on him, our family and our life. From the outsideimage looking in I suppose it looks normal and yes parts of our life are normal. That is because that is the life he chose to live.

It is a choice he makes every day to go on and live our lives as normally as possible. I am sure the people he works with see him as better and I am sure the people that see him being a dad think similarly. And I would too. By all accounts he looks and seems fine.

And I ask you not for sympathy for my family. Sympathy does us no good. I ask that you keep my family in your thoughts, your prayers and enjoy your families. A good friend told me when all of this started in my most desperate of times, “your family will grow stronger and closer” and that is a blessing. Initially, I was irritated because I was not looking for blessings. Instead back then I was seeking sympathy and someone to just say it all would be okay.

And it is. My family is closer and stronger in ways I can’t place words on. A fabric built so strong around our hearts that we will forever be bonded in this unique way. So yes there are blessings everywhere and I try and see them.

But I won’t lie. I am not a saint. I am angry. I am angry at how little the world knows about TN. I am angry that we went through all that we have gone through and yet I still wake up in the middle of the night petrified of tomorrow. I know more than anything that tomorrow is not promised. I am angry that more doctors are not working on TN. I can count on two hands doctors that treat it. I am angry it isn’t in our everyday vernacular like breast cancer or diabetes. I wonder would it all be different if it was?

I understand why though. I guess. Chronic pain illnesses are often not talked about. They are the cases that remain undisgnosed. They are ones who have to suffer in silence so we don’t have to acknowledge their pain every day. They are the ones that take countless mind numbing pills. They are the ones that take their own lives looking for relief and comfort. But when you look at it that way it changes you.

So no I don’t feel sorry for myself or want sympathy from anyone. I am just trying to enjoy today, praying for tomorrow and finding my way living as a TN wife. What is going on is long and complicated. It is hard to put into words and it is hard to put out there.

But what I can and will say is in the next two weeks please keep my family in your thoughts. But even more than that keep my husband in your thoughts. Do that by living your life with love and gracefulness.

The storms are raging.

If you know me you know there is not much I don’t do. I try and do everything and usually I can. Maybe I don’t always do them to the best of my ability, but I do the best I can. Toward the end of this summer I found it would be required that I do graduate level work in communications in order to teach a particular class that I had lined up to teach. I was completely okay with it. I knew it would be hard to juggle with my PhD stuff out there. But I knew if anyone could it would be me. I also really wanted to take ownership over this course that I am teaching. Both programs started a few weeks apart. Both are on different campuses. I am a graduate student in Communications at my Alma Mater through Purdue University. But I am also a Comp/Rhet PhD student at Ball State, so there is a storm brewing here.

8302c834209e3f2e9e69862c8ba968b7Then you have my new life and I purposefully chose those words. My family is still in a deep recovery from TN. We are sorting out the quickness with which our lives were flipped. We are getting to know one another again. We are finding ourselves relying on one another more than anyone else. No one but the four other people I live in my house with understand TN and what it has done to our lives. It is only just in the last month or so that I have even begun to open up about a lot of it to anyone other than a few extremely close friends. My own daughters I am not even sure they are there yet. And my husband. My sweet, strong husband who has endured more than any human should ever have to. He is coping with who he is after this. My husband who was the most even keeled, kind, and quiet man is now faced with anxiety, anger and uncertainty that he is trying to figure out how to cope with. He is coping with the discrimination that comes with an invisible disease. Cruel and intolerable discrimination. We also are all coping with this idea that he won’t able to ever be who he was before last November. His surgery worked. His surgery didn’t make it all go away. He lives and functions by daily meds. Meds that cause horrible side effects and issues. And we are on this roller coaster of new meds, side effects and meds to help with side effects. It feels never ending sometimes. But more than anything it leaves him exhausted and irritable. But not the kind of exhausted and irritable after a hard day at work that all of us experience at one time or another. Instead it is an exhausted and irritable that is hard to even explain. We are assured he will get to a good place. It just takes time. But his headaches last for days. We constantly have to watch out for triggers for his TN which are noise, stress, fatigue and anxiety. All things that happen regularly in life.  So there is a storm brewing here.

This year I have a 7th grader, a 5th grader (both middle school) and a kindergartner. That in itself is a storm of homework, piano lessons, softball and dance. Oh and braces, dental appointments and doctor appointments. And just being the kind of parents we have always been. Especially on days when we are tired and angry. Or we are ready to just go to bed at 4.

And finally my job. My job which is so demanding (that has no negative connotation here). I work well over 40 hours a week. I love my job and with every single bit of my soul I place all I have left here. So there is a storm brewing here.

So everywhere I look there are storms. I want to do it all, but in doing it all I am losing something. My family. My girls. My sanity.

I had to look at my life and see what I could release that would let me breathe a bit. I just needed to catch my breath and I was drowning.

It was my PhD. Now before you feel sad on my giving this up. Don’t. I didn’t give it up. I went to my program chair and asked what kinds of options I had. I plead and begged for mercy. I didn’t even know what I was asking for, but I knew I needed it and I knew this is where I needed it. The decision went before a a graduate program chair and committee and it was sent back that I could defer my program for a semester and they offered me another if needed. I was given until January, but also until August 2015 if needed to try and deal with life. To search for normalcy.

I am not so naive to believe that this search for this elusive thing that doesn’t exist will be found. Normal is what we make it. For me right now my normal is 63389b66f058a0b9801131a8f2bed4d2emotional chaos. But it is fully managed. I know once the physical manifestation of my heart (my husband) is better, I will be better. And I am sure many will jump on me for saying pursuing my PhD is selfish, but it is. It is for me right now in this moment. I am not doing it to advance a career. I will likely not receive compensation for the advanced degree because my chosen field doesn’t practice such a thing. My hope is that my position between high school teacher and college instructor will eventually advance the thinking on this particular topic. But I gotta do it and I know I will. But right now I am a wife first. I am a mother first. I am a teacher first. All I know is that I will do it. I don’t know how and I feel insecure and lost without a direct plan. But I won’t let it go. I can’t. I won’t let TN win that way.

Plus I know I am a fighter. I always have been. I wouldn’t have made it where I today without fighting the whole darn way. I will continue to fight and fight. And when I can’t win and the storm takes over I will use a darn tarp.

It sucks. Storms suck. But I know they make us who we are and I know more than anything I would not be surviving this storm without the storms I had before this. Love will win this battle too. Love for self, love for the love of my life, love for my career and love for my dreams. Love always wins. It all feels so impossible, but in the end it always wins. And maybe some of this me convincing you  is actually me convincing myself. I am not sure. I just know it has got to get better. But I get confused because we are better.

“To move forth and grab your destiny is admirable. To shape your own future with the strength in your fist is beyond that.”
S.A. Bouraleh

50 Days of Truth.

Over 100 days ago I accepted the 100 Days of Happy Challenge that I gave to myself. I wanted to try and find happiness. It came when I needed it. Well I still need it, but it came at a time where I was trying not to get sucked into the black hole that TN has carved out of parts of my life. 100 Days of happy forced me to look and see the good in every single day and every single way. And I am glad. But I also struggle because it was/is carried out in social media which means it can come across as just seeing the beauty in my life.

I don’t like that. In fact, I find myself irritated when I am not being my authentic self in my social media world. I don’t want everyone to always see and know my pretty parts and not equally represent the not so pretty parts. I am real. I am 100% real. I make typos and grammar mistakes on every single blog entry. My pictures sometimes show my house not so neat. My husband and I fight. I don’t always aww and coo over my girlies.

So to counter balance the happiness that I just spent last 100 days relishing in I am creating my own campaign and it actually may already exist somewhere there in the internets. But for me it is new and it based on the truths in my life. My imperfections at their finest. I am not only going to embrace them, but welcome them. The need for perfection can kill.

“The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.”
Jim Morrison

I am 100% okay with being imperfect. I am also 100% okay with sharing my truths so welcome.

Day # 1

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Here she is. My # 3 who was very mad because no one will play with her. This is despite the fact that we have been playing with her all day long. In this moment she is shouting, “No one even listens to me.” I grabbed my camera and she started waving furiously and shouting, “No.” And even though I find these fits of independence to be an annoyance and sometimes a hassle.  I know that this is a 5 year old’s way to assert herself and to find her voice. So we let it play out and we pick our battles. Some are worth it, and some are just better to not. Her outfit today, on Sunday, is just not. Hence the shades of aqua green, florescent orange and tie dyed red shorts.

With that…. #50daysoftruth

A New Beginning…

I will admit this is only my third year at teaching in the k12 system and in a high school environment. So by comparison my word may have a little less meaning. But I can tell you this, my school is doing amazing and innovative things. I have the distinct pleasure of working in a department with forward thinkers who not only understand their content at the top of their game, but who push themselves above and beyond Every-New-Beginningand rarely accept just average classroom techniques. What we are doing is hard to place words too. But what we are doing is supporting, teaching and driving a concept in education that I don’t believe many can compare to. 

I do work for a magnet school. I also work for an early college. And I can tell you that you will hear about the things we are doing. You won’t just hear about them, you know that they are making major impacts on our community, in our students and in our own lives. And no I would not dare put down my counterparts in traditional high schools or early colleges. That is not what I mean at all because truthfully I have no background knowledge of other schools. Every single teacher usually has some sort of impact be it good or bad. But what we have is lightening in a bottle and every year we pray and hope it stays. And every year it just gets more and more strong. Sometimes the intensity of such a thing is overwhelming, but then I tend to be an intense person.

I am two weeks into our new school year and two weeks into my dual credit course. I am beyond pleased with the strides we have already made. My juniors have done exactly what I expected from them and above and beyond. I also have had the distinct pleasure of working with these students as freshman and some as sophomores. But to watch their minds grow and change over the last two going on three years has given me more fulfillment than anything other than my own family’s strides and successes.

I have created a college environment in my classroom where the student not only thinks for themselves, but they are expected to think with reason. This has and will be their hardest maneuver yet as students. I have offered a very gray version of an English class. They have had me for the black and white version of an English classroom, so they are adjusting their sails. Or adjusting to me moving their cheese (we read “Who Moved My Cheese?” as freshman together) and trying to figure out what it means to be in a college English classroom.

I am trying to teach them Education has power and that they need to learn to harness it. I truly believe they will; and as they sail off I will be so proud to have been a small little sliver of them grabbing hold of their lives and directing it. I am teaching American Literature this year in my dual credit course with Freshman Composition. And I realized that it is not without thought that 11th graders are being taught to read and write and figure out who they are. All of the literature and writing we are doing is about finding identity, cultural belonging and finding the words to articulate it. It is an existential crisis in the making and is that not what teenagers 16-18 are going through?

They are figuring out colleges, taking tests that tell them whom and what they can be. They are being smacked with the realities of working, realities of people in their way saying you can’t or can, the reality of overcoming their childhoods and truly thinking about what life could be like out there with out the safety nets provided by their parents, guardians, schools, churches and friends. They are being told to find their voice, their own way and do this before you are 18. It is a lot.

I get to help them articulate those voices and put them on paper. It is not just an honor, but a privilege and no matter what my paycheck says every two weeks it has absolutely no comparison to the magic I get to see as they find themselves, their voices and their lives.

Saturday Sharing….I am a teacher edition.

Teacher Sharing…

Since I am teacher and since I have been noticeably absent I can tell you that the two relate. I have been in the process of gearing up for all brand spanking new classes. All of my classes are dual credits except for one which means I am balancing 11 grade standards for the state and my districtearly-college-studentsv3 with the college standards I have been appointed to uphold. A task that requires big brain puzzles as I call them. Not impossible not insurmountable but definitely a task. As well, within my classes I have an added structure of another college course for some of the students that struggle with reading. So at anytime I am possibly teaching three different levels or classes. That also means that I possibly have three different students doing three different things. It is differentiation at its finest. I love the challenge. I love that I had two years to work with all of my students to get to this point. I play the nice balance between high school and college.

When I went into this field I went in guns blazing determined to protect what my peers and I call the ivory tower. I was dead set it was my job to determine who entered and who did not. And to extent it is. But being an early college instructor is not quite so simple. I am teaching college rigor and standards. But there is a HUGE BUT. I am teaching it to teenagers. And no I am no pioneer on this front, but I am sensitive to that. I am also sensitive to the fact that my students take quite possibly seven other classes that are dual credit. They do not have traditional college student schedules where they have hours in the day to study. I cannot carry that mentality I did with my college kids that they needed to make time. And yes I believe my students need to do that, but it is far more complex. I am the voice for the university, but I am also an advocate for the early college high school student.

Anyway, I have a theme this year as I do every year. This year I am coming at my writing courses seeing the writer as an architect. It is a theme I found great connection with and feel will hit home with quite a few of my students. This concept is not new. However, it is innovative and will require teaching and understanding on my part and my students. More than anything, I am passionate for my job. I have always let that passion drive me and it has never, ever steered me wrong and I suspect that this year will be no different. Nor will the years to come.

viewEnd of Summer Sharing…

May I suggest a hotel to you? The JWindy.com. My guy took me there as a last of summer Hurrah. I fell in love. It isn’t the type of place you stay all the time. Well it maybe for you. But for us with three kids and well life. We would not traditionally stay somewhere like this. This is the type of place you go if you want to be pampered and escape from the humdrum of life. The price isn’t miserable, but more than your average hotel. But you get what you pay for. The car wash of showers, the robe, the food and oh my goodness the floor to ceiling view. And might I even suggest the higher you stay the better. Since I have moved from Indy I have found myself falling in love all over again with the city I am from. When I grew up in Indy I distinctly remember you didn’t do things downtown. I remember going downtown and seeing homeless people and dirty buildings and places. Within the last 10 years downtown has been revitalized and I feel like this hotel is the diamond on that ring.

You could also tag your hotel stay with a trip across the street to an Indianapolis Indians game if that is your thing. Which for very cheap you can get access to one of the cleanest and neatest ball parks around the midwest. I get spoiled by living in Fort the food at the Tincaps games is amazing and unique. The Indians have traditional ball park food. It is good and it does the trick. But if you are into draught beer than you will love the Indians stadium. The price of seats are decent. The lawn seats seem to me to be the best, most comfortable seats in the place. We have yet to sit there.

Alrighty, I am off to do some more planning. To do some more summering. To do some more hanging out with my girls. Life is good.

 

We loved with a love that was more than love.  – Edgar Allan Poe

6 months ago today I was living my worst nightmare. I was waiting to see my heart. I sat outside of the ICU crumpled, worn and eager to see his face and his smile. I was naive and foolish. I thought, like most of the world does, that surgeries fix things. I was full of hope and eager to tuck this into bed and call it done.

That wasn’t the case. The battle is still being fought. But the playing ground is way more even and for that we are grateful. Everyday the post surgery life feels a little more normal. He is running again, he is balancing out his meds and he is working hard at trying to have as normal a life as he can.

I am blessed and full of love for this man. I will forever be in love with him.

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I will forever fight for him, with him and because of him. Trigemenial neuralgia will not win because love always wins! And a from scratch chocolate cake doesn’t hurt the cause either. 

 

Saturday Sharing…Time for School.

Gah, I can tell you right now this SS will be all over the place and mostly because my head is all over the place. I am teaching a completely new schedule this year. All except for one class and even that one class is different, so I am kinda co-teaching kinda splitting. I don’t know what we call it but it requires some new thinking.

I am good at coming up with innovative and fresh ideas in my classroom. In fact, I work so hard on that. But I struggle putting it all down and making it work. I will get there, but I can tell you this week I have sat staring at the wall, a calendar and resources and just stared. I am trying to think of making all work. I am teaching dual credit freshman (college) English, Junior Level English and dual credit speech.

The speech class has thrown me for a bit of a loop and though the principles and theories of communication and rhetoric run very similar paths universities do not see it that way. It has required some extra work from me. I am grateful for the extra knowledge and steps and the opportunity. salemexamofI am really grateful to have it in our department. I just gotta work hard at staying true to the theories and pedagogies of speech communications and I will.

Add in that I am teaching American Literature this year when the last two years I taught novels and creative writing where I had freedom to choose what genre and backgrounds I wanted to teach. The junior level year in Indiana is basically meant to digest the sophomore level of US history. My minor was in Brit Lit as a BA and quite a bit of my graduate work was in Brit Lit. I like American Lit. But it is different. Guess what I have been doing? Any guesses?

I have watched show after show on History channel about Puritans, Salem Witch Trials, Jamestown, our beginnings and the list could go on and on. I did notice the curriculum really only seems to slide Native American Literature in and really does it with just Sherman Alexie (the standard go to). I plan to add. Grateful for my effort and work with one of my favorite professors I have immense understanding and knowledge of Louise Erdrich and by proxy Ojibwe (Chippewa) culture. I placed her into my creative writing course in the Spring and plan to cover Alexie and excerpts of Love Medicine. I have also read like a fool. I have read online, books and talked with my guy and girls about what they know. Thankfully, I feel very skilled in the literature but struggle a bit more with its place in History.

hero_evernoteBut I have decided to switch myself to an Evernote classroom. I researched and keep finding that Evernote provides great access for students on and off line. It remains there forever and you lose some of the nuances of my previous method. My previous method was using ITunes U which I did love and I have it set as a back up. However, the moving around and access to Itunes U was at times cumbersome and the limits on a private class were frustrating at times. As well your classes expire. Evernote will have my classes there always.

The thing that probably sold me though was the tagging system. Kids work in tags in their tech lives. I have created notes, readings, research and assignments all based on tags. There is no limit to the access to my class. It will always be there for them when I cannot be. It will always be there for me year to year and all I have to do is edit or change or leave it. Probably the 2nd best part of Evernote is the Evernote clipper that you can add on to your browser and you can basically clip what you like and create a document from it. That has been a tremendous use to me this summer. Once I am teaching with it if I don’t like it I can switch back to Itunes U. But I am doubtful.

I also will continue to use Showbie for assignments. I love the time stamp, the ability to lock assignments and the ability to archive. I used it all last year and it worked quite well.

I cannot say enough though that I am so excited for this year. I am excited for the challenge of new classes, I am excited that I am teaching the dual credit courses, I am excited to teach Juniors. I am just plain excited. I have a feeling this will be my best year yet.

A challenge is a good thing.

I have written so many times about the people who changed me and mentored me along the way. Teachers and professors that have impacted my path in ways I could never say thank you. But what about those who have changed you because they challenged you the whole way. Maybe you personally didn’t click or you didn’t necessarily like them, but because of that they pushed you. I never really talk about them much. Wait I take that back, I tell the story all the time to my students of the professor who once told me that I would just always put my family first and for that reason I could not have an academic career teaching the way I wanted and a family.

When I look back at that story and the way that that one comment pushed me I realized that even though I believed much to be wrong with that statement that it gave me drive. It gave me the will and want to prove him wrong. And I honestly believe I have. And I still keep it in the back of my mind as I push forward.

“The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it.” 
― Molière

But I got word the other day of a surprise death of one of my previous instructors. An instructor that by all accounts I liked. But one who challenged me and one who pushed me hard. It made me take a moment out to think of the people and teachers I have had in my life that have pushed me and challenged me.

This first was my fourth grade teacher Mrs. Meadows. Mrs. Meadows got me on the heels of a big move for my family which also involved a move in schools. The only school I had ever been in since kindergarten and the following year after I had Mrs. Capps for third grade. Mrs. Capps was the first teacher ever to not only recognize my love for writing, but she encouraged it and in her steed I flourished and won awards. That basically to me what the perfect set up to not like what was coming next.

hooked_on_phonics_logoMrs. Meadows had big 80’s hair. She had blue eye shadow and she loved her darn phonics books. She was tall and lanky and she told us that our fourth grade year would be about mastering (her words) grammar and phonics finally. I didn’t know it then but that was the beginning of a life long struggle for me. She exposed that weakness. I remember our first paper we turned in. We had to write a story about American history and I wrote and created a story about Abigail Adams. I was super excited about her reading my paper and being impressed with my story telling the way Mrs. Capps always was.

But a few days after turning it in I got it back. It was completely marked in red and even had a note on it to see her. So I anxiously waited for the right time to see her and truly thought she was going to tell me my writing was good, but I needed to work on a few grammatical issues. And she did. But she never told me my writing was good. Instead she told me my writing needed A LOT of work and more work then she could do in the classroom. She also went to the effort to set me up with a years worth of hooked on phonics and no I am not joking. That day I went home with a pocket box of 12 workbooks that explored grammar, syntax and the nuance of our English language. I was to work through these books in addition to the work we would do in the class.

God bless my mom who made it fun and tried to see the positive in it and reminded me how much I love to write and pushed that this could just be an extension of that love. And partially she was write. It certainly fulfilled this weird need to practice writing that only I understand now was my inner desire and passion for teaching. I saw the benefits to this idea of skill and drill. But there is a reason that sometimes skill and drill is followed by kills in the education profession.

My belief in my writing abilities was dashed and I truly believed that Mrs. Capps was just being nice and that this Achilles heel of mine would always be there and stop me for the rest of my life. To this day, I still struggle with those words she spoke to me that fourth grade year. Thankfully, I am educated to know my syntax, grammar and usage stems from my background and heritage more than just something being fundamentally wrong. In fact, in my job and in my academic career I will probably always feel non-native because I learned differently. No hooked on phonics program could ever fix that. It is a personal struggle that I proclaim now and just own. I do that for two reasons. The first is it covers me and the second I hope it teaches my daughters and students to be okay with their own nuances. It is okay to not always be standard. In fact, I hope people often strive for differences.

But this professor who passed, I didn’t necessarily care for the subject she taught. For that I feel like when I had her I walked into her classroomahab with a chip on my shoulder toward her and her content. She was very traditional in a sense for a professor and what I mean when I say that I mean she fits most of what our society says a stereotypical professor should be. She looked the role and talked the role. But the material she taught I had trouble engaging in. I didn’t find it interesting and by the mid point I was looking at a B- in her class. My one and only in my graduate career.

I became frustrated and went to see her in her office. What followed was an hour and half conversation about how when I feel disengaged I need to make a connection to the material. I know this connection. I teach it. I seek it out in my classroom all the time. But that chip stopped it. That chip didn’t let me around it, so I wasn’t seeing it. She printed out articles for me and we talked for along time about how the connection was there and I just had to find it.

We had read Moby Dick previously and then she assigned Ahab’s Wife which is a retelling of Moby Dick from Ahab’s wife’s viewpoint. As I took the info she gave me and the articles she printed out I realized I did have a connection. I began comparing her writing to Louise Erdrich’s, Books and Islands in Objibwe Country, and all the sudden the connections were happening so fast. It was a connection that only I could make but that connection turned me around to an A in the class. At the end of the class this professor pulled me aside and admitted she wasn’t sure I would find my connection because of my resistance to the content she was teaching. She also admitted being proudly wrong. That always meant a lot to me and reminded me that challenge isn’t always a bad thing.

So last week as I sat thinking about the beginning of my PhD program and then this new challenge my job threw at me I wondered if I could accomplish what I needed to accomplish. I was feeling particularly challenged and at a cross roads of my academic career where you are pushed to conform or engage in your own way. I still am there, but as I was thinking that night I began to think of her. I remembered how good pushing myself passed my own boundaries felt. I remember how she nurtured that challenge and made me a better teacher and academic. Then I heard less than 24 hours later that she passed.

This gives me proof to my adage that love always wins. If you follow your heart and if you do it with love, you will win. I didn’t let Mrs. Meadows dampen my own soul for writing. I could have and her voice still is in my head on every public piece of writing I share. But I am still sharing and I am still trying because I love writing. Same goes for the professor who said my motherhood would get in the way of career and the same for the professor who made me see that the connections are mine to mine and not anyone elses. That is love. Love of a career. Love of academics and love of writing.

It is just one of those days. (just write)

Wanna know a secret? Sometimes the brave face gets a little hard.  I don’t always want to be happy. Everyday I have to get up and wonder if today will be a good day. I roll over and look at the love of my life who a year ago didn’t have a hole in his skull. He looked a lot younger, had a lot fewer wrinkles and smiled a lot more. But he gets up every morning and carries on. He wants to move on and he tries.

But I can tell when a day has taken its toll. He face sags a little bit more and he runs his hand across his face as if wiping away the anxiety and fear will forever wipe away the scars that tn monster has left behind.

We all got a new life. But not one we sought out and even wanted. A life where we live day to day and minute to minute some days. And I am grateful they are better than they were, but those easy days are gone.

I get angry sometimes that my girls have to see and know this life. And usually in the moments I think I can’t take anymore I see their strength and I find it carries me.  But who carries him? I suppose it is me. But I don’t feel like I carry much. I carry regret. I carry guilt. I feel like sometimes I caused this.

And I often wonder how I contribute to it in a positive way. Do I even? I know my role. I am the mouth, the pusher and the one who reads the silent symptoms and recognizes it is time. The time time to call, to get help to get him to realize it is time.

And why did this choose us? Did we do something to deserve it? Did we not live right or good? Some days I wake up and I want to rewind. I want take backs. Some days I wonder if I should just move on. Forget already.

But I can’t. I don’t know how. Should I even? Yes our storm is maybe not tornadiac right now. We are in a light rain where everything is limbo. A limbo that goes no where.

Just Write. July 2014.

Happiness depends upon ourselves ~ Aristotle

I know I talk here a lot about my guy’s TN so it seems sad. A lot. And it is sad A LOT. But I we choose happiness. Our family together made the decision a long time ago that we are together and we are strong with each other. That isn’t to say that when bad days happen we don’t let it take us. We do. But in our normal everyday life TN doesn’t rule. It never will. Our hope and prayers are that a day comes when his TN is managed in a way that it becomes even less of our days. Until then we hold fast and steady to recognizing the good.

So yea I talk about sad things a lot here because it is my place to do that. But please don’t ever take that to mean I am sad. In fact, I would say it is likely the opposite. I try and shine light on the world and the people in it always. There is good in the world. TN has showed me that more than anything in this life.

That is why I do #100daysofhappy on my social feeds. I use it as a reminder to look and notice the good. I go back and look at it when I don’t feel it. It is around us always. I am blessed. I see it and I own it. I know my happiness depends on me. It has been awhile since I shared so get ready…

Day 44 – A special gift from my momma that had been lost

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Day 45 – Share a coke! This just makes me happy thinking of it. Smart marketing!

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Day 46 – Summer Day Lillies

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Day 47 – Love my Netflix!!!!

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Day 48 – Really love my Big Brother

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Day 49 – Seasonal Fruit and fruit dip…NOMS!

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Day 50 – Pano of softball tournament…still does not justice for the craziness that is a softball tournament

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Day 51 – Sun-burnt feet from above tournament

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Day 52 – This chair, this desk have shared so many hopes, dreams, failures, tears, laughter and smiles! I love what I do!

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Day 53 – My green thumbs

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Day 54 – My girls and their reading even in the summer (especially the summer)

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Day 55 – New kicks and a long lecture about taking care of myself pushed me out the door for a bit to take time for me

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Day 56 – School Supplies….NEED I Say more????

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See more 100 Days of Happy!