balls in the air

“Balls” in the Air

balls 2This baby thing is so tough. And I’m not even the one who’s pregnant! I’m just the grandma-to-be. Oh Lord! I wrote this in September on a return flight from St. Louis.

We are only 18+ weeks in and I am driving myself crazy. Right now I’m sitting on a plane with my stomach literally ready to “toss it’s cookies.” And there’s nothing inside. My nerves are shattered. Ashley has a doctor’s appointment and I won’t know anything until I land. So I sit here praying. Praying. Praying. Everything will be okay. Good. Great.

People tell me I carry too much of the load when it comes to my kids. I probably do. I don’t know how not to. I remember when they were little. When they hurt, I hurt. When they were happy, I was happy. It’s no different now. I think it’s harder. Little kids, little problems. Big kids, big problems. So true. Don’t we all just want to see our kids happy? I know I do. When my kids ask me what I want for a gift for one occasion or another, I simply want to see them happy. That brings me the greatest joy.

balls 1My mom used to talk about having the “balls in the air.” They were never all “up there” at one time. I get it. God, I love when my “balls” are sky high. Means life is good. Everyone is happy. In a good place. I used to have Gregger to balance me. Calm me. Center me. I don’t. So I have to figure it out. Breathe. Inhale. Exhale. Breathe.

I spoke with my “seatmate.” Rarely do that. Needed the distraction. Asked her how life was. Up and down. You know. Life with teens. I’d been there, done that. I shared. Hold on for the ride. It’s beautiful but bumpy. It never gets easier. Age doesn’t change a thing. You worry. You care. You hurt. You’re joyful. It’s part of the job description. Carry the load. I told her to cherish the highs. And ride the lows. Breathe. Inhale. Exhale. Breathe.

As the plane landed my heart pounded out of my chest. I texted. “Landed.” And then I waited.Text me back. Something. Ding phone. Ding. Please. Something. Seconds passed. Nothing. It seemed like forever. And then. Ding. Not a text. A video. I clicked. Opened. And there it was. The beautiful sounds of baby L’s heartbeat. Thump. Thump. Thump. I listened. Again and again. A few tears slipped down my cheeks. Passengers stared. I didn’t care.  The “balls” were back up in the air for the moment. I’d take that. Happy moments. Blessings. 

balls 3

its a boy

It’s a…?????

gender revealBack in the “old days,” few of us knew what we were “having.” Amnios were for the older pregnant moms. And ultrasounds? Primitive. They’d be considered archaic today. We were lucky to make out a few features. I know. I’m aging myself. I didn’t want to know what I was having. Wanted it to be a surprise. Wanted to wait until that baby was “pulled” out of me and I heard the doctor say, “It’s a ____!” First time I was knocked out cold. So I didn’t even know what I had until I woke up. Surprise! It’s a boy! Second time. I swore the whole time it was a girl. Heartbeat higher. Carrying pretty much the same. Gained less weight. Just thought it was a girl. Surprise again! It’s a boy! So third time around I just assumed. Boy. That’s okay. Healthy is all that matters. I was awake. Gregger behind me. Screen covering my belly. C-section #3. Had this down pat. I heard the cry. And then. Surprise. It’s a girl! No way! I didn’t believe it. But it was. And now that little girl is having her first. Her miracle baby.

But times have changed. Planning is the rage. Waiting is no longer an option. 20 weeks. Anatomy ultrasound. Sealed envelope. Only to be revealed at the gender reveal party. September 24th. A celebration of Baby Ludwig. The first of many. Why not? Celebration of new life.

IMG_2378I was convinced Baby L was a girl. All the signs were there. Spread belly. Fuller face (Ashley will kill me for that one!). Sweet cravings. Moody (She’ll hate me for that too!). Nothing pointed to boy. I was so sure. We had voting cards. Facebook poll. The odds were high in favor of girl. Not that it mattered. It was just heavily weighted pink. Friends gathered for the festivities donning “Team Pink” or “Team Blue” buttons. Just as the sun was setting, it was time to reveal. Only my dearest and trustworthy friend, Marcia knew. She had been given the sealed envelope. She filled the box with balloons. She knew.

Ashley and Tyler grabbed the tape. They ripped it slowly. Opened one side. And then the other. Until out popped…

So beyond the fact that IT’S A BOY, which we all know Tyler is over the moon about, Baby Ludwig is due the beginning of February(somewhere around the 9th). This may not seem significant. But…Gregger’s birthday was February 5th. Pretty darn special if you asked me! I know my angel is watching over his “little one” with love and protection.  Ashley and Tyler sent a special message to him on September 24th. I don’t think he was too surprised. Somehow I think he already knew. 3 months and counting…DSC_1001

letters of hope

Letters of Hope Continued…

believeSo after all the weeks of waiting, praying, waiting, praying. Tears. Stress. And more tears. The wait was over. I didn’t sleep the night before. Weird dreams. But I remember being at a shower. Ashley was pregnant. Ready to pop. And then I woke up. And realized what day it was. The nerves set in. Stomach rolling. Hands shaking. I went to barre. Spaced out. Headed to OTF. Zoned out. At 11:40, my heart was pounding. I raced out to check my phone. And there it was. Emoticons. “Prayer hands.” One after the other. From Ashley. I sent them back. There was nothing left to do. But wait. And pray. Some more.

I headed home. I offered to sit with her. She wanted to be alone. Tyler was at work. But she said she was okay. 2 more hours. I could manage that. By 3:00 I was ready to jump out of my skin. I was pacing. My nerves were shot. I told myself I wouldn’t meddle. But I was a mama. A worried mama. So I texted.

“Are you okay? Any news? Do you know what time?”

“I’m fine. 3:00.”

“Okay.” And I was back to waiting. A few minutes later my phone beeped. Ashley. My heart pounded out of my chest. She wouldn’t text me the news. Would she?

“They just called. I won’t know until tomorrow.” Ugh! I had to call her. I knew she’d be pissed. I didn’t care. I had to know she was okay. So I dialed.

“You okay?”

“Fine. Hungry. I’m going to eat. I’ll know tomorrow.”

“Will you be at work?”

“I don’t know. Really mom. I’m fine. I’m just hungry and stressed. I just want to go eat and lie down.”

“Okay. Love you.”

believe 1At least 12-24 more hours. This was agony. But if she could do it, I could do it. So I took Angel. Cuddled on the couch. And waited. I tried to watch TV. Blank stare. Tried to crochet. My fingers didn’t work. Tried to sit outside. Too restless. I paced. Looked at the computer. Blank stare. Up. Down. Sit. Stand. Looked at the clock. Maybe an hour had passed. This was going to be a long night. Breathe. I sat with Angel. Stroked her back. Talked to Gregger. Prayed.  Two to three hours passed. I wanted to text Ashley. Call her. Something. But I couldn’t. I just sat in that quiet house. Alone.

Suddenly there was a pounding at my door. UPS. Had to be. I was expecting some packages from Amazon. Couldn’t even remember what I’d ordered. But it was a distraction. Picked Angel up in my arms. Headed to the door. Peeked through the peephole. No one. Must be a package by the door. So we opened. And out jumped the greatest surprise of my lifetime. Ashley holding the most amazing sign!  

Tyler capturing it all. The tears. The  screams. The overwhelming joy. Ashley was PREGNANT!  Dreams do come true. And this pretty much says it all…

I couldn’t wait to write Gregger that night.

June 3rd

Dear Gregger,

YOU DID IT! THEY DID IT! SHE’S PREGNANT!!! You are going to be a grandpa! Thank you, thank you, thank you for watching over her and those babies. I only wish you were here to celebrate this joy. I kind of think you are. I think you are watching. I think you see everything. And you know. So now you have to keep them all safe and healthy. It’s a long road, but they can do it. The kids are so happy. It was so sweet the way they surprised me. I was overcome with tears, joy, and love. The only thing missing was you. I just kept thinking how I wanted you here. Here to celebrate the happiness.

 We all love you and miss you so much. I look for a sign of you every day. And I try to send something back so you can feel my love. I hope you do. Until tomorrow…


Letters of Hope Continued…

emptyIn the space of waiting, I realized the emptiness of the “second year.” It became quieter. Lonlier. Sometimes I felt detached. From family. Friends. It was easier just to keep to myself. Go inside. And bury myself there. It was safe. But so empty. So I turned to Gregger. For comfort. It was just a difficult time. One I would figure out. And smile on the other side.

May 31

Dear Gregger,

Well today marks 21 months since you’ve been gone. It feels like forever. Feels like a lot longer than 21 months. I’ve had ups, downs, and in betweens. I think it’s going to get easier and then it gets harder than ever. This is definitely one of those times. It will never get easy. Never. It will never be the same. Never. I say it over and over again, but the things that never change are: I miss your voice. I miss your kiss. I miss holding your hand. I miss your laugh. I miss your smile. I even miss your snore. I miss my best friend. There will never be another. No one could ever be the yin to my yang like you.

I spend a lot of time alone. Thinking. Missing you. But, these days, most of all, worrying. Worrying about Ashley. Tyler. And those babies. I started taking spin classes. You know how much I hate the bike. I think of you the whole time I’m riding. I think about how much you’d love the class. I picture your face in front of me. I picture riding to you. I picture riding with you. I close my eyes and see you there. And then I pray. I pray to you. I pray for the kids. Today I focused on positive thoughts. Positive. Positive. Positive. So I’m sending that energy to you. I’m sending that energy so you can spread all the “positive” love around. Watch over your “babies” – your little girl and her little ones. Keep them safe. I miss you and love you more than ever…until tomorrow…

positiveJune 1

Dear Gregger,

I’m a wreck. My nerves are all over the place. My stomach is in knots. I hope I can hold it together. I am trying so hard. I distracted myself tonight and went to my little friend’s baseball game. Little league. Just like when our boys played. Cute. Kids throwing balls helter-skelter. Running around the bases and not knowing where they’re going. Crying when they strike out. Funny. Distractions. But then it was over. And I came home. Quiet house. Lonely house. And back to nerves. I think about you. I talked a lot about you tonight. With Suzy. Two years ago at this time we were in NYC. Walking in Central Park. Brunching at The Smith. My how time changes. Life changes. I hold onto those precious memories like diamonds. Gold. Treasures.

I haven’t talked to Ashley for a few days. We’ve texted. I’m trying to keep my distance. I don’t want to pressure her. Make her anymore nervous. I know her nerves are crazy. So I’m asking, once again, keep her calm. I know she reaches for you. She senses you. She feels your presence. So does Tyler. My nightly prayer. Keep them safe. The “babies.” All of them. We all miss you. Life on this planet will never shine as bright. It is missing your glow. So shine your light on them. I love you so much…until tomorrow…June 2

empty 2Dear Gregger,

Well this has been one crazy day. Of course my nerves are bonkers – not even sure if I’ll be able to sleep tonight. I heard so many songs today that made me think you were speaking to me through the radio. I sing along as if I’m talking back. I always wonder if you hear me. The tears flowed. They always do. My heart aches. It always does. I never thought it could hurt that bad. It’s the worst pain I’ve ever felt. But here’s the craziest. I went to get these crazy things put in my hair. You would probably laugh. But it’s the only silly thing I can do right now. The only thing that brightens up my day. Gives me a little sparkle. Really. I’m sitting there just chatting with Sarah (the girl who does my hair) about NY. She and her girlfriend are going there next week. All of sudden I felt a jolt. My spinal cord stimulator turned on, full blast, by itself! I was looking around trying to figure out how it happened. There was nothing. It just started up. Tingling sensations all the way from my waist to the tips of my toes. I was freaking out. I almost thought you were there. You were doing it. I don’t know. What other explanation could there be? It’s happened two other times. Once at the airport in Hawaii. That time I really believe you did it. There was no other explanation. It turned off by itself. The second time was in Fry’s grocery store. That was odd. And, again, it turned off by itself. But this time, it turned on and would not turn off. Thank God I had the magnet. Otherwise I’d be stuck. So weird. If it was a sign, I’d take it anytime. I’m open. I can always turn it off. I don’t care. If not, just plain creepy.

positive 2I talked to Ashley today. She’s so nervous. Tomorrow’s the big day. She goes to the doctor at 11:40. I don’t know how long it will take after that. I will be a mess. Please watch over her. Please keep all of them safe. Please bring her happy news. She’s such a great girl. Great daughter. Sweet. Loving. Kind. Bring her happiness. Joy. Love. She and Tyler are so good together. And I know they will be so happy. So watch over all of them. Keep your big arms of love over them. We all miss you so much. I love you…until tomorrow…

I was holding my breath. I don’t think sleep would come for another 24 hours. Maybe longer. Not until we got some news…

To be continued…


Letters of Hope Continued…

doing the bestSo it probably seems to many of you reading this blog that I’ve been writing about the same thing forever. This IVF thing is tough. The waiting. The hoping. The praying. And waiting some more. I’m glad I wrote during that time. Not only for how I felt then but for how I feel now. To realize that I can still turn to Gregger. But I can also handle it on my own. I can find the strength. Dig deep. Stand tall. And keep going. Through the toughest days. And, somehow, the sun always shines brightest on the other side. So writing continued to be my savior.

May 28

Dear Gregger,

doing the best 2I spent today with Ashley and Tyler. We went to look at houses. They found a house they love, but standing there I felt so out of my comfort zone. I felt like a fraud. It was like, “What am I doing here with them? I don’t know what I’m doing? Gregger, you should be here, not me. You know the questions. I don’t even know what to ask.” I want to help them, but I don’t know the right way. You would. I kept looking at Ashley. I wanted her to sit down. I wanted her to take it easy. I want to treat her like a china doll right now. I feel like everything is so fragile. I know she’s worried. She mentioned it several times. And then we’d quickly change the subject. She wants to be positive. And as soon as she is, she’s afraid to say so. I know the feeling. It’s so uncertain, and, oh so scary. I know they both want this so badly. And I hurt so badly for them, wanting it so badly too. I just kept wishing you were there. We drove around and looked at other places. I told them they had to have options. I think that place is really out of the question. A little over the top. I think they could find something a little more reasonable without having to put so much into it. It’s hard. You want everything all at once. I remember we did too. I remember looking for our first house. We looked at all of those run down fixer uppers. We thought we could do it, and, in the end, we went with the new. We went in a little over our heads, but it all worked out in the end. Scary at times, but I guess the risks paid off. Or did they? Was it all the risks that pushed you to the edge? Was it the risks that pushed you to work harder and harder until you went over the edge? I don’t know. I think there’s a fine line there. I keep trying to help. But I have to be realistic about this too. I was honest with them. I will seek help from others. Opinions. I won’t make a stupid mistake. I promise.

I kept remembering all day how you used to say to me, “Don’t you dare leave me first. Don’t leave me alone with these kids.” Well you did it to me and now I need your support more than ever. I’m doing the best I can, and, most of the time, I’m holding it together fairly well. But this one’s got me good. So I am begging you, as I do every day, to watch over your baby. Watch over her babies. Keep everyone safe. We all miss you more than you could ever imagine. If we only had one more day to let you know. I hope you do. I hope you hear the messages. I hope you feel it. Because this earth is just a much emptier place without your heart. Your smile. Your incredible being. I know you are watching. I know you are holding her in your arms and heart. Just keep doing so…I love you forever. Until tomorrow…

doing the best 1May 29

Dear Gregger,

I hate these holiday weekends. This day seems to have gone on forever. It’s been filled with some strange happenings. Really strange now that I think about it. First encounter: I was leaving Equinox today, casually talking to some lady about the clouds overhead. She said she missed the sunshine. I said I didn’t mind the clouds. I didn’t want to tell her I look for you in the clouds. When it’s sunny I have no chance of seeing you. She’d think I was looney. I simply told her that I lived in Arizona for nearly 40 years and woke to sunshine most days. This was a nice change. Some guy was walking toward the gym. He jumped into the conversation. “I just moved here from Arizona.” I asked from where. “Scottsdale.” What part. “D.C. Ranch.” We bantered for a minute or so. I decided to ask the big question. So did you ever hear of the Clotherie? His mouth dropped. “It was the only place I ever shopped.” Well, I’m Greg’s wife. And then his jaw dropped. “I’m so sorry. I don’t even know what to say. He was the best guy ever.” Yeah. I know. He was the BEST. I love hearing that. But I already knew it. It was one of your customers. I couldn’t believe it. Here was a guy who drove you crazy, but someone who REALLY knew you. It was drizzling, but I wanted to stand there in the drizzle and hear him talk about you. I wanted to hear stories. I wanted to hear something. But then he had to go. But it was cool. It made me smile for a minute or two. Something that’s been a little rough lately. I’m so stressed. So worried. And then I got in my car and the tears welled in my eyes.

I talked to Ashley and Tyler today. I think I gave some decent advice about the houses. Maybe some things you might even say. It’s hard. You were the one who knew all those things. I keep telling Ashley to rest. I want her to take it easy. I know she is. I wish I could just relax. I just wish I knew. I just wish I knew it would all be okay. But I don’t. So we wait. That’s why I turn to you. Again and again and again. To watch, to hold, to pray. I thought I prayed hard when my little dog, Lucy, was in the hospital, but that was nothing. I’ve never prayed harder for anything in my life. Oh, I would have prayed this hard and a million times harder for you if it would have changed anything, but it wouldn’t. That sucked. I still prayed. I prayed that you didn’t hurt. I prayed that you were okay. I prayed that your mom got you. I prayed that you were at peace. And I prayed that you knew how much we all loved and still love you every single day.

An old friend reached out to me today. We chatted over FB and he told me that in time I need to let you go. Not just for me, but for you. I need to set you free. Is that true? Am I holding you back? I’m sorry if I am. I don’t want to. If I had to I would let you go, but only if that meant you would watch doubly over Ashley and those babies. But that’s not fair. Just a little longer. I’m asking. Please. And when the time comes, please guide me. Because as much as I thought I knew how; I don’t. I love you. Until tomorrow…

doing the best 3May 30

Dear Gregger,

Happy Memorial Day! Well, it certainly wasn’t a holiday without you here. This was my second Memorial Day without you. Now I’m moving onto my seconds. The firsts were hard enough. The seconds seem to be even harder. Lonelier. I’m watching the NBA playoffs. I didn’t watch a basketball game all year. The Suns sucked. You would have been really disappointed. The Warriors are in the playoffs. It’s the 7th game of the series against Oklahoma. Pretty good. I keep wishing you were here so we could watch together. I think you’d be cheering for the Warriors. So I’m cheering for you. The finals will be against LeBron and the Cavaliers. It will be a replay of last year. Not sure who I’ll root for in that one. It would be kind of cool for LeBron to win for Cleveland. I know you never liked him but he’s done a lot for the game. The French Open is on too, but it’s really boring. Federer dropped out. Nadal dropped out. And a few of the other top players. Boring. So I started making an afghan. Something to do with my hands. Something to distract my mind. It always goes back to the same place. I look at your picture. Especially the one of you and Ashley together. I see you holding her, your arm wrapped protectively around her and I hope you are doing the same now. I hope you are holding her safe. Holding those babies safe. I pray every day. Every night. I know I repeat myself, but I so wish you were here.

So Golden State won. It’s Warriors vs. Cavs. Back to back matchup. You would love it. I think. Long time in coming before the Suns ever make it there.

I’ll keep you in my prayers tonight. I always do. I’ll send you my love. My heart. All I ask is that you keep Ashley, Tyler and those babies safe. You are their guardian angel. I do believe that. I do believe you are watching. Listening. And taking care. I love you. Until tomorrow…

And the countdown begins…prayers continue.

To be continued…

Letters of Hope

Letters of Hope Continued…

waitingTen days of waiting and praying. Waiting and praying. There was nothing else to do. The embryos were implanted. And all we could was wait. Hope. I tried to remain calm. Not for me. But for Ashley. The baby(ies). She didn’t need my stress. She was carrying enough of her own. So I pretended. I smiled. Laughed. And loved. I gave when they wanted me to give. I held back when they needed space. But on the inside. I was struggling. Barely holding on. I wanted time to stop. For 10 days. And then I wanted the news to come. But that’s not the way it works. Life continues. So we did too. And I kept writing. To fill the space. The emptiness.

May 26

Dear Gregger,

Did you know you are on my mind from the minute I open my eyes in the morning until the moment I close them at night? And if I should wake in the middle of the night, you are my very first thought. When I get in my car to drive away, I look for you in the clouds. I listen for you on my radio. I ache to feel your hand in mine. But it isn’t there.

This is such a long, seamless forever waiting game right now. I just wish you were here to calm my nerves, tell me everything would be okay. But you’re not. So I look to you. Talk to you. Pray to you. I try to fill my hours but the quiet moments are lonely without you. Even though we weren’t always together, I knew you were there. I knew you were a phone call away. A text away. So just now when I need you most, it’s a real test. And I’m not doing so well.

But most of my waking hours are spent worrying and praying for Ashley and those little “peanuts.” Please keep your angel wings spread over them to keep them safe. I love you…until tomorrow…waiting 2

May 27

Dear Gregger,

It’s been kind of a strange day. It’s the beginning of a holiday weekend. Memorial Day. Not that we ever did very much but it was always so special to have you for two days in a row. I miss that. It’s crazy to think that having two days was such a big deal for us. Most people have that every weekend. They simply take it for granted. For us it was special. But that’s kind of cool. We appreciated the moments. Sometimes we got a little too hung up on those moments. You wanted them perfect since they were too few and far between, so if we faltered, it seemed as though the day was “messed” up. But I think we finally figured that out. We figured out how to “mess up” and still have fun. How to “mess up” and get back on track. How to “mess up” and still love each other. We had something special. We were so lucky. Most people don’t have what we had once in a lifetime. I hold onto that and count my blessings every day.

I think Ashley and Tyler have it too. They know how to be together. They’ve been dealing with this infertility for nearly 2 years. That takes a toll on a couple. Do you remember? It was hard on us. I can only imagine for them. But they’ve held it together. I would never have known. But I guessed. Not because of anything they showed between them. But just because. I guess it was a mom thing. Intuition. I don’t want them to hurt anymore. I want them to have happiness. Joy. Love. And family. Ashley’s struggling a little with “holding it in,” but she’s holding it together. It’s hard at work. Not to be able to do things. And not to be able to tell people why. But it’s all so hard. Not telling people. Holding it all in. Not knowing. Waiting. So,PLEASE, PLEASE keep watching over her. Please hold her close in your hands and heart. Keep all of them safe. I know you “came to her” a few weeks ago. It meant the world to her. I love you more than ever…until tomorrow…

So the waiting game continued. We went about life trying to be normal. But life was anything but normal. We counted the days. One at a time. Slowly. Slowly. But, as they say, “Good things come to those who wait, but better things come to those who are patient.” So patient we would be. One day at a time.

choose hope

To be continued…

Letters of Hope

Letters of Hope Continued

hope 3Infertility is tough. There’s no other way to put it. It’s an emotional roller coaster that weighs heavily on the hearts of future moms and dads struggling to build a family. But when it’s your own, it’s different. It’s tough. You want to do more. And more. You want to fix it. But you can’t. So, my role? Support. Encourage. Reassure. And PRAY.  In the meantime, I turned to my Gregger. My support. I didn’t get answers. But I felt better. And better was okay.

May 24

Dear Gregger,

Well today was a HUGE day. Those little embryos, babies, or whatever you want to think of them were implanted in Ashley’s body today. Now we wait, pray, wait and pray that they continue to grow and are healthy. I know you will continue to watch over her. I had the most miraculous moment today. She was in for the procedure at 1:00. She was sending me messages, telling me how nervous she was, and I was trying to keep her calm. All the while, I was a wreck. But I had no one. No one to calm me. So I turned to you. Of course I did. You always were my rock. And at 1:30, when I thought I couldn’t stand it one minute longer, you showed up. Right there in my car. “Somewhere Over The Rainbow.” Your version. The one I NEVER hear!!! I stopped. Literally. Thank god I was at a red light. I took a picture of my radio. I couldn’t believe it. I was shaking from head to toe. I texted it to Ashley. I wanted her to know her daddy was here. He was watching and taking care of her. Of me. I cried. I sobbed. And when they called to tell me about this miracle that had taken place today I was overcome with so many emotions. Am I crazy? Maybe. But I will hold onto this belief. I will believe I see you in the clouds. Hear you in the music. Why was I so strong for so long and now I’m just falling apart? I guess I had no choice. And now I just really, really want you here. I want you to be a part of this. You should be here. But you’re not. So I’ll see you in the clouds. Hear you in the music. And keep believing. Watch over Ashley and those tiny babies in her womb. Keep them all safe. Know that we all miss you so much, but no one as much as me. I love you so much…until tomorrow…

May 25hopw

Dear Gregger,

It’s kind of been a crazy kind of day. I’ve heard you everywhere. I’ve seen hearts in the clouds. And my “rainbow” song played AGAIN!!! I  never hear it and there it was. I took a picture. I sat at the gas station so I didn’t miss a word.  I heard “The Prayer” two or three times. Keep us safe. What a beautiful message. That’s all I think about. Keep Ashley and those “little ones” safe. I know you are watching. I hope you hear my words. My heart beating. See my tears. That’s all I can give you. I wish there was more. I just wish we’d had more time. So many things to say. So many things to do. But it was so good. Not perfect. But we made it so. The bad times made the good times so great. They taught me to be grateful. They taught me about blessings. Life gifts. If life was always perfect, how would I have learned. You showed me the way to happiness. To love. To courage. And now to strength. Even when I am so weak, I hear you pulling me to find my way. Thank you.

Keep those magic, soft hands over your baby. Keep all of “them” safe. As always, I love you more than ever. Until tomorrow…

I believed in my signs. They brought me joy. Peace. They still do. I cling to hope. Faith. And the power of positive thinking. “You can’t live a positive life with a negative mind.” I choose positive. Today. Tomorrow. Always.

hope 2

To be continued…

Letters of Hope

Letters of Hope Continued…

griefSo I’ve been looking back. Some may wonder why. Why look back on a difficult time? Why relive difficult moments? It’s part of me. Part of my life. Part of something I want to share. So others know they aren’t alone. And for those who are members of this “club,” I’m sharing the waves. The highs and lows of the second year. Reality. Feel. Fret. And sometimes fall. It’s all okay. Because at the end of the day, you will stand. On your own two feet. Stronger than you’ve ever been.

So we were waiting. And praying. And I was continuing to write Gregger. The words are unedited. They were a stream of consciousness. He was my lifeline to sanity.

May 22

Dear Gregger,

sunday fundayToday is Sunday Funday. But I haven’t had one of those since you left. I kind of hate Sundays anymore. I actually dread them. I think about how we would wake up, you would do your silly chores, we’d have our coffee together, and then go for our walk. I miss that. I really miss our time at Starbucks. How silly is that? But I loved that time. Our time to talk. Catch up. Talk about everything. Or nothing. It didn’t matter. I just loved spending time with you. Running all those silly errands. That meant more to me than some fancy dinner or a big night out. I don’t know if you ever really understood that. I just loved being with you. I see couples together and I miss that. Miss walking and holding your hand. Miss talking to you. Miss riding in the car. Miss everything. But Sundays are tough. So today’s one of those.

Ashley called first thing this morning and she was so excited. She was nervous but excited. I guess the eggs divided again, which is a good thing. Like I keep saying, I don’t really understand it all, but if she’s excited, that’s a good thing. Please keep watching over her. Hold her in your arms and keep her and those little eggs safe so they can be implanted in her body. I am praying with all my might. I look for you in the clouds. I see smiles and think it’s you looking down at all of us. At least I hope so. That beautiful beaming smile that just lit up the entire world.

I love talking to you. I feel closer. I hold your picture in my hands. I whisper to you. Others would think I’m crazy, but it makes me feel good. And right now that’s what I need. Remember to hold your baby in those big, strong soft hands of yours. I love you so much…until tomorrow…

May 23

Dear Gregger,

grief 2aI was such a wreck today. My nerves are starting to get the best of me. I didn’t realize that Ashley wasn’t going to hear anything until this afternoon so I carried my phone into every class with me. I NEVER do that. But I was afraid to miss something. She called and she’s so nervous. Excited. Everything rolled into one. This has brought us even closer than we were before. It is a blessing. I know it is. In so many ways. Tomorrow is the BIG day. They are implanting the embryos (or whatever they call the fertilized eggs). Then we pray again. Again and again. Over and over. With all of our hearts. I can’t remember how many days she has to wait but it will be treacherous I’m sure. She’s taking such good care of herself. You’d be so proud. She’s so much of you. You’d love watching her at work. I watch her and see so much of you. Her smile. Her way with people. Her joy. Everyone loves her. They tell me she is warm. Loving. Caring. Kind. All the things people told me about you. It warms my heart. And I tell them all that she is her father’s daughter. And that you would be so proud. Maybe that’s all the “smiley” clouds I see overhead. I hope so.

Hold your hands over her. Or maybe they are wings. I don’t know. You must be the grandest of angels. Take care of her. Keep her safe. I so wish you were here with me, but, if I can’t have that wish, I wish that you watch over your baby (and her “babies”). I love you with all my heart. Until tomorrow…

“Grown don’t mean nothing to a mother. A child is a child. They get bigger, older, but grown. In my heart it don’t mean a thing.” So my child was grown, bigger and older, but in my heart, still my child. My heart simply wanted her to find the greatest joy. The joy I had found with her.

To be continued…


Letters of Hope

Letters of Hope Continued…

prayers 4My stress levels were off the charts. Every day I waited for Ashley’s call. My heart racing. Pounding out of my chest. Good news? Please God. I’d sit in my car. Afraid to move. Afraid if I were driving, I’d break down. I knew the time. Knew when she’d call. So I’d sit. Wait. Think. Pray. I had my songs. My letters. They kept me sane. At least somewhat.

May 20

Dear Gregger:

So today had it’s ups and downs. I struggled so much today. I cried a lot. A lot! I hear songs and they remind me of you. I try to pretend like you are speaking to me. Sending me signs. Messages. There are special songs. And when I hear them, I break down. “The Prayer.” “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” “To Where You Are.” I heard 2 of them today. I needed to. So badly. So Ashley got some news. Two of the eggs fertilized. It could have been better but she’s hoping to hear more tomorrow. Prayers. Prayers. And more prayers. I know you are watching. Taking care of them. We are hoping more will mature and fertilize too. Keep guarding her. Watching over her. I know you will. It’s hard as a mom. It’s hard being here alone. That’s why I’m talking to you now. I know you would know what to do. What to say. I just pray. Constantly.prayer 2

May 21

Dear Gregger:

I didn’t sleep very well last night. I was talking to you all night long. In my dreams. Half awake. Half asleep. I just remember talking to you. And praying. A lot. Today was a little better. Ashley found out that 1 of the eggs that fertilized split and they are still holding hope that another will mature and maybe split. I don’t understand all the terminology but 2 of the eggs were rated “good” which I know is a good thing. We have to keep praying. You have to keep watching and holding your hands over her. I am counting on you. She needs you. I need you. Really we all need you. But that’s the way it always was, right? Maybe we needed you too much. I sometimes feel guilty. Did I push too hard? Did I cause this somehow? Could I have done anything different and changed our situation? I don’t know. I go back and forth, blaming myself. It’s hard not to. It’s hard holding so much inside. From my family. Friends. It hurts. But I understand. So I pray. And I talk to you. I’ll keep saying it over and over, I miss you. I miss you so much. And, as always, I love you. Until tomorrow…

Two more days of waiting, and praying…

prayer 3


Letters of Hope

Letters of Hope

hope for blog 3So I’ve been all over the place lately. 2 year anniversary. Butterflies. Signs. Sickness. Strength. Flashbacks. And the “news.” Ashley and Tyler. This consumed the first half of year 2. Physically. Mentally. Emotionally. And I wasn’t even the one trying to get pregnant. But I was the mama. And there’s nothing worse than watching your child “hurt.” Hurt has no age limits. But this wasn’t a time for sorrow. Negativity. It was a time for strength. Courage. Confidence. And optimism. So I smiled. I laughed. I cheered. But in the silence, the tears fell. I prayed.

The hardest part was being alone. Not having anyone to talk to about my feelings. Not being able to vent. It was just stuffed. Deep down. It hurt. My heart hurt. Why was I taking this on so intensely? I wasn’t sure. I just knew I was. And I didn’t know how to let go. One night it hit me. I could talk to Gregger. Just in a different way. But he would hear me. So I started.hope for blog 4

May 19th:

Dear Gregger:  I am totally at a loss anymore. I don’t have anywhere to turn. You were my rock. My best friend. And you’re gone. You’d think I’d be used to it by now. 20 months and 19 days. But it doesn’t get easier. It gets harder. I don’t know if I was just numb before, or in complete denial, but lately it just sucks. Don’t get me wrong. It’s always sucked. But it sucks more than ever. I want to talk to you. I want to tell you things. I want you to help me find the answers. But you’re not here. I look at your picture. I beg you to send me signs. Show me the way. I feel helpless. Lost. Stuck. I reach for your hand. But there’s nothing there. It’s empty. Just like my heart. It aches. It hurts so bad sometimes I don’t think I can stand it for another minute. But somehow I breathe. I keep breathing.

Ashley and Tyler are going through their struggles. I want you here to hold me up when I’m ready to fall. Today was a big day for them. I was ready to fall apart. I just wanted to talk to you. Hold your hand. Have you tell me everything would be ok. I talked to you over and over again. Did you hear me? Please watch over them. Today was the day the doctors retrieved her eggs for IVF. She is going through infertility like we did. Only it’s even tougher for her. We got lucky. She’s lucky because now there are great doctors and miraculous medical improvements. I just pray and pray and pray for them. I pray that you are holding them in your hands and heart.hope for blog

I will continue to talk to you. I need you so badly. There is so much I wish I could say. I want one more hug. One more kiss. One more beautiful smile. I miss you more than words will ever say. Please hear my words. I love you. Until tomorrow…

So it was corny. Crazy. But it helped. This was the slow process. We had to wait to see if the eggs fertilized. Days and days of waiting. Hoping. Waiting. Hoping. So I kept writing. Day after day after day…

To be continued…hope for blog 2