Monday, February 22, 2016

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Microblog Mondays: Gratitude

Our dear Mel over at Stirrup Queens has begun a blog phenomenon... as she frequently does. 

Microblog Mondays. Writing in your own space. Something short and sweet. But it's meant to take back our bloggy space and call it our own. I am going to try to do this periodically. Life's hectic. So we'll see how long this lasts.

Last Monday, I was blissfully unaware. Going about my business. I had a busy day at work, followed by a meal with two girlfriends, and then the girls and I went to a coffee night (aka support group) for those who have had weight loss surgery. I was finishing up some major projects at work in preparation for a Sunday morning flight to Punta Cana. It would be our first trip to the Dominican Republic. We were going to an all-inclusive, courtesy of my loving Mom and Dad. There, we would meet up with them, and my sister and her family too. Eight of us for one glorious week in the sun, sand, and enjoying the relaxation of a vacation together. After the -40 windchill temps we'd had, and the snowstorm we were about to have (that arrived the following day!), well, by the end of February, many Canadians start seeking sunshine elsewhere, even if only for a week. 

Like I said though, I was blissfully unaware... 

While I was at the coffee night, I pulled out my phone. I'd forgotten to take it of silent mode, and I saw that my mom, my sister, and my husband were frantically trying to reach me. Uh oh. That doesn't bode well. I texted my husband, who immediately replied, "Your sister is trying to get in touch with you. Your Mom called and left a message too." 

I texted my sister. Her response? "Call me. Now." Oh crap. 

When I did, she told me the news; my mom had a heart attack overnight on Sunday and was in the hospital. Oh no... 

What followed was a week of wondering, fear, tense moments, anxiety, stress, and a whole lot more, for all of us. Obviously the trip to Punta Cana was off. So we are now in the process of filing claims (we all had cancellation insurance) and all that. Next up, arranging who was flying home. My sis offered to go first; she hadn't seen Mom in awhile. She managed to get there three days later, on the day a cardiac catheter test was done, and stents inserted to deal with blockages. 

Petite and I fly down in two days. We will stay for at least 10 days, after which Hubby replaces me and stays for a week with Petite, and when they come back, one of my aunts (mom's youngest sister) will go for a couple of weeks. 

I was afraid, for the first real time in my life, of losing my mom. I know the inevitable will happen. That is the way it will go. I will get a phone call from home and I will have to be on a flight ASAP, desperately trying to function through blurry-eyed tears. My mom is my best friend. I hate being so far away from Mom and Dad. But I cannot find good work at home and thus, I stay where I am. It's a helluva position to be in. I just don't like it. 

But there's not a damn thing I can do. 

Mom is back home. My sis is still there. I see them in two days. I am looking forward to that. And honestly, I am thanking my lucky stars that this didn't happen while we were in the Dominican. THAT would not have been fun for anyone. 

Today, I am grateful. A holiday can be taken later. For now, I cherish my mom and I am glad that I can continue to do so. Oh so grateful for so very much... 

Monday, February 01, 2016

Microblog Mondays: Alone, or Lonely?

Our dear Mel over at Stirrup Queens has begun a blog phenomenon... as she frequently does. 

Microblog Mondays. Writing in your own space. Something short and sweet. But it's meant to take back our bloggy space and call it our own. I am going to try to do this periodically. Life's hectic. So we'll see how long this lasts.

As children, my sister and I grew up on a street with oodles of children. She was very social; she loved being WITH people, doing things WITH the kids. Heaven forbid she had to spend time alone. That was something my sister didn't enjoy at all. Me on the other hand, I loved being alone. Reading. Writing. I remember playing Barbies all by myself and loving it. I enjoyed time with my friends too of course, but I didn't depend on them to entertain me. Then again, I had my sister pretty much attached at my hip.

Those same kids on the street, they were in my Girl Guides troop. We did lots of activities together. And some of the kids from my church were in Girl Guides with us too. As were kids in the school choir. A circle of us. All around each other. We either knew each other personally, or knew someone THROUGH someone else or through a different activity/group.

When it comes to Petite, I am sad for her. Very sad.

The plan, the great plan we envisaged, was to have two children (at least). If for no other reason, so she could have a sibling close to her age. Hubby and I are older and when we are gone, who will she have? Seriously... who? She'll be very much alone.

Yes, she has her older sister (who is now 21) and her older brother (who turns 20 today by the way). They love her. But she is only 6. She's far removed in age from them. When she is only 20, they will be 33 and 35. Huge differences.

Petite has made a couple of good friends in school. Not many though. She tells us that many of the kids tease her.
They have already told her that she is...
oh how I shudder...
the dreaded "F" word.

Fat. They call her fat. And I cry at night for her. I truly do. I know what that feels like. I know how it is to grow up with that stigma. I worry for her. I cannot take it away. Other than encouraging her to be healthy, eat well and exercise, what else can I do? I don't know. There are no solutions.

She has no friends on our street to speak of. There are only a few children in neighbouring houses and they are all at least three years older than she is. That makes a difference at her age. And let's face it... being an only child, she definitely knows how to be bossy and direct the playtime! She has ideas and Lord forbid if you don't wanna follow along!

She attends swimming classes, but has no close friends there. She comes to church with me, but has no close friends there. She goes to Sparks (aka Girl Guides, but for young children, ages 5-6), and has only one good friend there. And she has one friend from her years at daycare... but that little girl now has many school friends too.

Petite just wants someone to play with. To spend time with. To be silly with and play stuffies and pretend, and dress up, and Barbies, and Lego, and all that sort of thing. I can only do so much. Let's face it, I'm way too OCD to have much imagination! Even kneeling to play with her while she is in the bath is giving me huge troubles... my psoriatic arthritis is acting up badly and my left knee is a bloomin' mess at the moment. (I've no idea how I'm going to run a 10K in May!) So I'm desperately seeking a way to resolve this for her.

I see that as a child, I was alone, but never lonely.
I see that Petite is very much alone, and definitely quite lonely. 
I don't know how to fix it or help her.
I don't think I can.

And again, I cry at night, wondering what I can do, short of moving to a 'young family' area, to help her socialize more. The last couple of weeks, I have organized playdates on the weekends. I think I need to do more of that, and make it a regular thing. I have to do something, lest she grow up sad, alone, and lonely and perpetually wishing for more.