The anxiety is getting to me. I’m having a hard time even forcing myself to act normal today. Days with a 31 in them make me feel like crap and now my favorite holiday does too. 7 years ago at this time, I had no idea I was about to start dating the man I would marry. 10 months ago at this time, I had no idea I would lose him that night. Fortunately, today is not about me. So, I’m gonna put on my big girl panties, put this tinkerbell costume on and go to Alexa’s daycare party. After all, today is for her.
Archive for October, 2013
I’ve been half dreading and half excited about Halloween. It is my favorite holiday and has a lot of past significance. 7 years ago, Alex and I had just started talking. We hung out for the first time on Halloween night. He admitted later that he basically duped me into a “date.” We had worked together for months but had never really spoken until that week. Suddenly the random guy that fixed my computer and got my coffee out of the vending machine when it got stuck was paying attention to me. We “myspaced” and emailed back and forth for days. On Halloween, he mentioned that he would be watching scary movies alone. I (half jokingly) asked if he wanted to come hand out candy with me. He immediately responded that he would see me later. I went about my day and at 6pm, the phone rang. He was telling me he was headed to my house. I had no idea he knew where I lived! Thankfully, I gave him the chance to explain that I live in a house his best friend rented before me. I remember asking him if he was driving a spaceship. His car was so loud! We spent a few hours awkwardly watching Dawn of the Dead, sitting across the room from each other. He left early and gave me an even more awkward hug goodbye. I turned around and went out to a bar with another guy haha. Somehow in the next few days, we became inseparable and instantly fell madly in love. Cheesy, I know.
2 years ago (on Halloween), Alex was away for work and I decided to take a pregnancy test even though I knew it could be too early to tell. We had been struggling with infertility for so long, I just couldn’t wait. It was so faint I could barely tell it was positive. I have Alexa to prove it was.
I have such fond memories of haunted houses and hayrides, every year we were together.
This year, I have the excitement of taking Alexa trick or treating for the first time, and going to her daycare Halloween party. It will be hard without him, but she will make it a happy day.
I can’t help but wonder if someone will ever sweep me off my feet like he did. Does it happen more than once?
Today, I decorated his grave for the holiday. I was worried that decorating a grave for Halloween could be considered disrespectful. I mean, it is a holiday of ghosts and goblins and cemeteries. I decided that I didn’t care. He deserves decorations for a special day. I’m really trying to get in the spirit of Halloween, like I have before.
Sometimes I find myself being self conscious about my child’s behavior. While on vacation, Alexa got sick in a restaurant. So I know.. Most people say “ok kids get sick.” But do you want to be the person seated near me at that time. I was with a group of people. I cleaned her up and she was fine, but I couldn’t help the embarrassment. The table next to us left… So here I am, with three couples and my child. Boy does that scream single mom. Later in the night, an older woman came up to me and told me how I did a great job with her. That was very nice. But felt oh so condescending. Oh young single mom needs reassurance.
Yesterday, Alexa and I went to a baby shower. Now of course, single or not, this was for women only so I would be alone regardless. It was a rough day for a toddler but she did great. She sat in the car for 2 hours and then was forced to behave at a party all day. She wanted to run around and I had to chase her. I know this is in my head, but I couldn’t help but feel that people wondered why she didn’t stay home with her dad. Thinking about it more, I wondered how many people knew and were thinking “that’s the girl…”
Most people commented that she did well, but one crazy announcement out of left field left me speechless. Toward the end when she was getting restless, I walked her back and forth in a stroller. I was stopped by a woman who said “you remind me of one of those carnival games going back and forth that you need to shoot.” What?! I didn’t even respond.
It was a big weekend. Originally,
I planned on coming to the shower with my mom and then heading right back alone. She is sick and could not attend, so I decided to spend the weekend as not to travel alone with Alexa twice in one day. We saw a lot of friends and hit the most important aspects of NJ… Namely food! We went to a diner, a Filipino restaurant and jersey mikes. Alexa and I loved it all. I even snuck in some “work” that needed to be done there. As usual some moments are hard and I let my thoughts get away with me. Overall, it was a great weekend and I’m so proud of how well she did!
I have been in a better place lately. Vacation was really good for me. Life is moving forward. I am feeling better. I gained some weight on vacation and got it right off. I’m proud of the changes I’ve made. I started my new tattoo yesterday and am very excited about it. I have many more sessions to look forward to. Last night, I ran over to my parents house to drop something off. Backing out of the driveway in the cold darkness and heading toward my house gave me flashbacks of the night of his death. It was NYE, in the dark and I was at my parents. When I could not find him, I drove from their house to mine. Even watching the garage door open bothers me, as I am reminded that it was open that night, as if to tell me something was very wrong. Today, I had a Doctor appt. I usually have crazy anxiety but it went well. I am proud of myself and thankful to have such an amazing doctor. I spent so much time with her while I was pregnant, and was greeted with a hug and got to just talk about life. She knew Alex as well. When leaving, the receptionist commented that her computer was very slow. I told her that my husband put the computers in that building. She asked where he works. Well…. no where lol. I explained that he had passed away and told her where he used to work and moved on. It’s a normal part of my life to answer that question and I just moved on from it. Driving home, this song came on:
Suppressed by all my childish fears
And if you have to leave
I wish that you would just leave
‘Cause your presence still lingers here
And it won’t leave me alone
These wounds won’t seem to heal
This pain is just too real
There’s just too much that time cannot erase
When you cried I’d wipe away all of your tears
When you’d scream I’d fight away all of your fears
And I held your hand through all of these years
But you still have
All of me
You used to captivate me by your resonating light
Now I’m bound by the life you left behind
Your face – it haunts my once pleasant dreams
Your voice – it chased away all the sanity in me
These wounds won’t seem to heal
This pain is just too real
There’s just too much that time cannot erase
I’ve tried so hard to tell myself that you’re gone
But though you’re still with me
I’ve been alone all along
…me, me, me.
After returning from our honeymoon, Alex and I created Diamond Cut Photography. Ultimately, photography is an expensive hobby, and we created a business as a way to maintain the cost. We loved it. We met great people and had a lot of fun doing it. Two days after his death, I announced the closing of the business. I couldn’t imagine doing it without him and to be completely honest, I’m just not the photographer he was. I love it and I think I’m pretty good, but he was amazing. I sold some equipment and kept his camera and accessories. Of course, he had the better camera. It has just sat in a closet. Looking at it was painful, as it was a big part of our life together. I felt I would never enjoy it again. A few months back, one of my closest and best friends asked me to photograph her son’a first birthday. I agreed. I couldn’t say no to her. I did it and was proud that I did, but can’t say I got much joy out of it. I was happy with the outcome but it was not exciting without him. I, again, put the camera away. Again, I was asked to take pregnancy portraits for my family while on vacation. I hadn’t even thought of bringing my camera. This time, I was a little excited. I was, of course, worried that I had now become a little rusty. I did some research and practice. It’s all on me now! I had fun. I continued to take photos throughout vacation and really had fun! I got up early and photographed the sunrise over the ocean. We did the same thing on our honeymoon. I challenged myself with photographing the moon over the water. Today, I worked on the portraits. I’m happy with myself that I did it all on my own. Plus, I enjoyed it! I hope they like their photos. All in all, this was a big step for me and pulled me out of my comfort zone. I always had Alex as my “security blanket.” Now, I’m on my own and I can do it. 3 years ago we photographed their wedding together. Today, I completed their pregnancy photos all on my own. I haven’t started working on the other vacation photos. These were first priority. I will post more later.
Since Alex died, I have rarely taken real photos. Really, it has only been when someone has asked me to. I immediately closed the business when he died and sold some of the cameras. I kept his. I was not even thinking of bringing it with me on vacation, until I was asked to do pregnancy portraits while we were here. I, of course, agreed. I’m not 100% comfortable doing it on my own. Alex was better. I wasn’t finding enjoyment in it without him. Taking out the camera always felt like it was HIS stuff. I took the portraits yesterday, and had fun. Last night was a full moon. I tried to photograph it but I didn’t bring a tripod. I wasn’t nearly as successful as I would like, but enjoyed trying to figure it out. I woke up this morning as the sun started to come up over the water. It’s cloudy so I cannot get a true sunrise but it is still absolutely beautiful. So here I am, out on the deck with “our” camera equipment asking Alex to give me some beautiful photos.
People always say they need a vacation. The problem is, when you come back… Your world is still waiting for you. My world isn’t bad… Don’t get me wrong.. But being in another state doesn’t change anything. Alex is still gone and not coming back. I still have milestones to face without him. At night, I’m still alone and lonely. Nonetheless, it all seems so much easier to face when the ocean is right outside your bedroom door. I have the same responsibilities I usually have. I had origami owl work to do (which is fun anyway) and did have to write a paper yesterday. I still have to take care of Alexa, but that doesn’t bother me. I would eventually start to miss home, but right now, I’m loving it here and don’t want the week to end.