About Me

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Kirkland, Washington, United States
I am a child of God. I am a follower of Jesus. I am a wife, momma, daughter, sister and friend. I love good conversation and hearty laughter. A good cup of coffee is always appreciated. Most of all, I desire to bring others into an experience with Jesus. One that will shape their lives and rock their souls for Him. Geoff is my best friend and amazing husband. Parker is my handsome boy who lives in Heaven. Norah is my bright star and bringer of joy. Tori is my overcomer and peaceful warrior. I live to show Jesus' love to each person He places in my path. I pray this blog strengthens you, comforts you and encourages you and that it MOST OF ALL causes you to want to get to know Jesus in a deeper level.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Today...starting the new normal

Today was a good day. A good day that started out rough, but slowly got better.

I woke up today at 7:05 with my husband. He was getting ready to go back to work. I'm so proud of him. It felt like the first day of school...for me anyway. The nerves, anxieties and excitement were all present feelings; however, I'm not sure how Geoff felt. As he was getting ready, I went out into the living room and sat on the couch with my mom. The Today show was playing in the background as we watched Geoff put on his motorcycle gear. He walked over and gave me a kiss goodbye. All of a sudden I felt this rush of emotions flood over me. I was instantly hit with the fact that he should have been picking up our baby, giving him a kiss and talking to him goofy or something. I choked back the tears, smiled up at Geoff and gave him a kiss goodbye. He walked out the door and I cuddled on the couch next to mom.

I started to doze off when mom suggested that I go back to bed and rest some more. So I went to my room and laid down. My mind raced through several thoughts. One of which was how on earth can I start to feel normal. I just want to be and feel normal again. My eyes started to burn and I couldn't hold it back any longer. The tears flooded out. The emotions ran down my cheeks and I wept. My mom came in, sat on the bed and rubbed my back just like she did when I was a little girl. She hushed my tears and told me to breath. I slowly started to calm down. I told her I wanted to feel normal. She responded by asking what is normal? Normal is having a baby to hold, feed, love, kiss, coo at, that's normal. At least, that's what normal should have been. Mom pointed out that normal is different now. That I'll have to create a new normal. No, Geoff and I will have to start creating a new normal. We will need to create a new definition, a new sense of normal. I finally relaxed enough to doze off and fall to sleep.

I got up at about 11:00 and got ready for the day. As I stood in the shower I prayed for stregnth and happy feelings. I put on my clothes and continued to pray for stregnth and happy feelings. Those came when I put on my jeans, my pre-pregnancy jeans and found that they are starting to fit more. I still have to rubberband them, but they're fitting better!! ;) (minor victories are good victories AMEN)

Anyhow, dad, mom and myself went to coffee at Flying M. As I sat there, drinking my double tall latte, we talked a little more about being "normal". Dad told me that what I was experiencing was perfectly normal. Not only was I more than likely experiencing normal post partum, but I was experiencing normal amounts of grief on top of that. We talked about how it was perfectly normal for me to cry over my son's death. That it was perfectly normal for me to have small things, like Geoff getting ready for work, trigger thoughts of saddness. This was my normal, for right now. Dad then quickly said that Geoff and I, once everyone left, would start creating our new normal. I cannot wait for that.

After Flying M, mom and I said goobye to dad. He drove home today back to Yakima, mom heads back next Sunday. (I thank the Lord that my dad and mom were able to stay so long. I could not have gotten this far without them.) Mom and I headed to the credit union, where I was going to see some of my coworkers for the first time. As I pulled into the parking lot my heart began to race and my palms began to sweat. Mom asked if I wanted her to go in with me and I told her I would be fine. I sort of rehearsed what I might say or do if anyone tried to approach me, hug me or say anything to me. Mom told me to just breath and get going.

I walked in, hands sweaty, heart racing. I filled out the deposit slip, hands sweating, heart racing, hands shaking. I breathed. No one walked up, no one said anything, I was relieved. I approached Jonnie's counter. Put my deposit down and breathed. Jonnie grabbed my hands, and told me that she'd been thinking and praying for me. She then said, "that's all I'm going to say because then I'll start crying and you'll start crying and we don't want that." I smiled, held my breath, and said a quiet thanks. With my deposit complete I quickly headed back to the car. I breathed a deep sigh of relief. Mom asked how it went and I told her it went fine. I was so thankful to have made it through that. I started the car and we headed to WalMart.

We ran a few more errands, bought a few fun things (two apple paintings from Lemon Tree, an autumn candle and beautiful leaf plate), and headed home. I was so proud of myself for making it through all the errands. I had run into a few people and handled it with grace and ease. The Lord was right there beside me through it all.

We got home and started hanging up the pictures we had purchased, put out the autumn decorations we bought and cleaned the house. I was starting to feel normal. Mom and I laughed, cleaned and talked while Bill Evans played in the background. I lit my mulled cider candle and unwound. It was a great afternoon after a rough morning.

Geoff got home, told me about his day, about how the first graders were the only ones who really asked any questions. They asked if our baby was a boy or a girl, if our baby died, etc. I was so proud of Geoff that he was able to handle it with a smile. Geoff also told me about how his coworkers were so welcoming and loving. Geoff was starting to feel normal.

The road to our new normal runs on the same path of the road towards healing. Geoff and I are headed down that road. Along the road we'll see and run into people who will either help us or drive us crazy. Along the road we'll see and run into things that will remind us of Parker and it might be hard or it may make us smile. Along the road we'll find ourselves and we'll start our new normal. I can't wait.

6 comments:

Claudia said...

You went to lemon tree? NO Fair, that is not normal!!! It is so good to read your blogs and see that you are able to put into words your healing process. I am so blessed by you. You and Geoff are continually in my thoughts and prayers. If there is anything you need and I can help I am here. I love you both

andrew said...

hi, rachel.

it's been a long time since we talked, but i do whatever my facebook friends tell me, and you told me to visit your blog, twice, so here i am.

i'm impressed by your honest balance of grief and forward-looking openness to the future that God has for you (not to mention that you write well), and i pray that He will continue to give you and your husband hope and comfort in this time.

-andrew

Jenica said...

Rach,

Thank you for allowing us to catch a glimpse of your healing process. It does my heart good to be able to heal along with you. I love you, dear friend! Please let me know if there is ANYTHING I can do to help you build your new normal. We are thinking and praying for you guys daily. Let Geoff know that we are so proud of him for taking on those 1st graders! :) Love you guys!

Jenn said...

Hey,

I was pointed your direction from my best friend who said you'd had a rough time, and I just wanted to let you know that even though we've never met, I am praying for you. I am amazed at your steadiness and faith and how honest you are being in the face of such an incredibly difficult time. I will be thinking of you and praying. I hope it gets better soon, but even if it takes a while, it will get better. Take care. You are in our thoughts. x

Bob said...

Rachel,
I hope you know how proud I am of both you and Geoff. It was to my benefit that I was able to be with you these last several days. I was helped as your mom and I walked with you on this awful journey. I miss being there in Nampa with you two. Keep close to God, remember "be cheerfully expectant. Don't quit in hard times. Pray all the harder" (Rom. 12:12, the message).
Love, your dad
ps-you took mom to wal-mart, I need to get her home and cleanse her :)

Whitney said...

I found your blog through Jess Hanson's, my sister-in-law. Though I don't know you, am impressed by your courage and faith. We serve an amaing God. I think of Psalm 16 - the promises that God has provided our portion, our cup. I pray He continually fills your cup in the days and months to come. You and your husband will be in my prayers.