Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Somewhere between my 4th and 6th Child

How can it be true that 4 1/2 years have passed since I last blogged? I could kick myself for all the missed opportunities of recording memories. Memories. I used to have an excellent memory, but it went away. Gone somewhere between my fourth and sixth child. I've heard the term "pregnancy brain". I even used it when I was pregnant, but what do you call it when you are done having kids and your memory seems to be in constant distress mode. Like, "Where did I JUST put my phone?", "What did I come in this room for?", "Who did I tell to clean this bathroom?", or my favorite, "Where is my wallet?" (usually asked while I am standing in line with a shopping cart full of groceries and at least 3 children in tow). These are just some of the questions I'm asking on a regular basis. I'm guessing that having kids, (not having as in delivering-but having them currently) puts my brain in distress. There must be a way to reverse the effect though. Maybe I'll look into some brain strengthening apps for my phone. Or at least get used to the idea of being a "forgetful jones" in my mid 30's.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Part Two of an Update on US...

(I am going to pick up right where I left off in my last post, so if you haven't read that you may want to go back & read it first)

After listening to the voicemail from Matt I had to listen to it again just to make sure I heard him right.  Yes, it was true. He definitely said he would be home in 3 or 4 days. It was such a surreal feeling & I decided almost instantly that I would not tell the kids he was coming. I kept it a secret for a few reasons:
  • If things changed and he didn't show up I didn't want their little hearts to be crushed :(
  • I am always up for a chance to give someone a fantastic surprise-especially my kids or hubby :)
  • ( this may have been my #1 reason) I didn't want the kids asking me ten-trillion questions a day!
Is that last reason horrible of me!?  I imagine their questions sounding something like this, "When will Dad be here?", "Will we be awake when he comes?",  "Is he going to come while I am at school?",  "Can I hug him first?",  "Can I show him my new shirt?",  "Can I tell him about my cut on my leg?",  "When is it 4 that tomorrow?", "Where is Dad now?", "Does Dad get to come to Church with us?", "Can we eat dinner with Dad?"....and that would just be in the first 5 mintutes after telling them!!

There was also the delicate task of explaining to the kids that Matt's sister had Cancer. How can  7, 5,  & 3 year olds even be expected to understand something like that, I wondered.  I know that kids understand so much more than we give them credit for, but I still wondered how it would afect each of them to hear that she was really sick. Sicker than they could understand.  There was also a certain concern of how it would affect the kids to see Matt again so soon. He had just been home in January visiting us for a 2 week R&R that all deployed soldiers are allowed during a long deployment. It was so great to have him home, and I tried my best to help the kids understand that he was not home to stay.  "This is just a visit.", I remember telling the kids.  I also said something like, "The next time Dad comes home it will be to stay!" I was wishing now that I hadn't added that since most Red Cross Leave only consists of a 7-10 day break. How many send offs could our little brood take? I figured that rather than worry more than I needed to, which is nearly impossible for me anyway, I would just wait to cross those bridges when they came.

Life went on as usual (and by usual I mean sleeping in the basement like it's a WWII bunker & you're just waiting for a "tornado bomb" to be dropped at any moment) the next few days, and I made sure to keep my phone with me at all times. I didn't want to miss any call or text from Matt that would give me the much anticipated update on his travels. I can't remember for sure, but I think the next time I heard from him was on Friday afternoon. He gave me an airline name and an arrival time. It turned out that he would be coming at the same time as an Easter Egg Hunt/Potluck that I had planned with a bunch of people in our Ward.  Rather than have the kids miss out on the much anticipated event I was able to drop them off, pick Matt up at the airport, take him home, and go back in time for the pot luck.  I realize that it must sound pretty odd not to bring the kids. However, I have found over the years that it is nice to have our own private reunion, and let the kids have their own special reunion that I can stand back and enjoy watching.  Oh, and about going back to the pot luck...Matt had been traveling for almost 3 days with almost no sleep and an almost 12 hour time change, so at Matt's request I took him home to catch up on a little sleep while the kids and I finished enjoying the Easter festivities.

I was so excited for the kids to see Matt and let the secret out that I only spent about 45 minutes before rounding the kids up and heading home. I sent Matt a text and told him we were on our way & to hide somewhere.  I can't remember if it was my idea or his, but he ended up hiding in the shower. (I'm pretty sure it was my idea considering how bizarre of a hididng place it was!)

While driving home I was trying to think of how I could lure all the kids into the bathroom together. The answer was fairly obvious considering that anytime I step foot into the bathroom I am immediatly "needed" by all the kids, and they can't possibly wait to more seconds for me to finish my, :) I wished there were a more suitable option considering my plan to record the surprise, but thought I would have to make due. As soon as the kids and I pulled into the drive way I spurted out, "I have to go to the bathroom-Trin, make sure everyone gets in the house!", and then I hopped out of the van and ran into the house.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Part One of an Update on US! :)

I have been worse than terrible at blogging, and life has changed for our family so much in the past couple of months! I feel like I need to do a little journaling about what has been going on before I forget too many more details. Lets see...where to start?

Matt had been in Kuwait for 7 months & then he was sent with a small group to Afghanistan where they would spend a couple of months working on a special mission that I wasn't allowed to know about. I went from being able to Skype with him as often as I wanted to only being able to Skype once every few weeks. To help the time go by we decided to make a visit to UT, so my Dad flew out & drove the kids and I back for a 2 week visit.

While I was in UT for a couple of weeks visiting my family I found out that my sister-in-law had just been diagnosed with a type of cancer in one of her eyes. I was so saddened to find this out & wondered how soon Matt would find out since he was in Afghanistan at the time.  A few days later the kids and I returned to KS and found out that things for my sister-in-law had gotten worse.  Upon further testing it was discovered that the cancer had spread to her liver, was at a stage 4, and was considered terminal.  (I don't know much about cancer diagnosis, but I knew this meant it was bad)  Thanks to the Internet Matt was able to find out about his sister just a few days after I did.

Being back in KS distracted my from the recent bad news, due to the fact that we were officially in "tornado season", and although many of my friends in Wichita assured me that nothing ever happens I still couldn't shake my terror of the unknown.  The kids and I started sleeping in the unfinished basement every night, just so that I would be able to sleep.  That was the hardest part of living in KS for me. A few days after being home I got an email from Matt. He thought maybe he would be allowed to come home on Red Cross leave after realizing the severity of his sister's cancer. I didn't get my hopes up at the idea because I figured that any family emergency that warranted him coming home for leave would have to involve one of our kids or myself. I agreed that it would be great if it happened, but didn't think anything more of it.

A day or two later the weather was warm and sunny and the possibility of a tornado was the furthest thing from my mind. The kids and I were out front with the next door neighbors enjoying the summer-like weather when the tornado sirens sounded on base.  I looked at my neighbor and asked, "What is that?" It was the first time I had actually heard the base sirens and wasn't sure if I believed what I was hearing. He confirmed my fears and said yes, those are the sirens.  We both assumed that it must be some sort of drill because the sky was blue with friendly looking puffy white clouds.  Moments later the commanders wife, who lived a few houses down, came speeding up and stopped at the curb next to us. She called out, "this is NOT A DRILL. A tornado has been spotted 5 miles from here!" We all hurried in the house and my adrenaline was pumping so hard I felt like my veins were filled acid! I won't go into detail about all that happened next because it turned out to be a false alarm & what was thought to be a tornado was actually a cold air funnel.  Although I was relieved that it wasn't a tornado I was still really shaken by it & my nerves were shot.  I didn't think I could stand living in KS during tornado season for one more day! (I know it sounds extreme, but I was so afraid!!)

I don't remember for sure how many days had passed since the false tornado alarm, but one afternoon I noticed that I had a missed call from a number I didn't recognize on my phone.  I also had a voicemail, and was almost in disbelief as I listened to the message from Matt telling me that he wouldn't be able to contact me for the next 3 or 4 days because he had been approved for red cross leave and was on his way HOME!

To be continued.....

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Grass isn't ALWAYS Greener

The Grass may not always be greener, but this new blog sure is better looking than my old messed up blog!!

The birth of Face Book sort of ruined my desire to blog. I am committing to become a blogger once more for a few reasons. I think that in order to remain at the level of sanity which I am at I need to be able to ramble...ramble about my days as a mother of 4, as an over-planned-under-achiever, as a black sheep living far away from family, and as a temporarily single Military Wife.

So, as a disclaimer to this new blog: I am not here for your entertainment. If I do provide entertainment then it will just be an added bonus for you, the reader. Deal? Like it or Leave it.