On Tuesday night we took the youth to go and hike Y mountain. I am always ready to hike the Y. We have done it as a family every year for over 18 years now. The hike has a special place in my heart. As I was getting ready and changing into some workout clothes I took off my necklace and my earrings. I was going to take off my bracelet that my friends made me for Tatum's funeral but I decided to leave it on as a reminder as I hiked. While we were all gathering one of the kids noticed that I was wearing the shirt from our fundraiser hike and it had the date that we hiked on it. He made the comment that we had just hiked 22 days ago. Which seemed like forever ago, and yet it seemed like just yesterday. Time. Which means that Lance and the kids hiked it almost exactly 4 months ago, which means that it is almost 4 months since Tatum died. How can it be that long? Time.
When we got to the trail head Halea and I decided to try and hike fast. She wanted to run it, and so did I but I am so out of shape I knew there was no way I could run much of it. After the first couple of switch backs it was Halea in the front, then two other boys then me. I figured one of the leaders needed to go up front to make sure the kids in the front were OK, right? Here comes the ugly competitiveness bone rearing it's ugly head:) Halea made it to the top in just under 20 minutes. Really fast. I was about 22 minutes, not as fast but not bad for an old lady! We stayed at the top until all of us got there and then we sang a hymn. It was cool. There were about 40 of us. All of the kids did awesome. Many had never hiked the Y before. Check that off their bucket list.
As we were hiking back down, I was swinging my arms and felt my bracelet slip off of my wrist. I saw it laying on the ground and then I realized that it had broken and the beads were everywhere. I knew that I shouldn't have worn it. I frantically started trying to pick up the beads that I could see. One of the other leaders that was there bent down and started helping me find the beads. I could not see, but he was persistant and found several beads. I was pretty devastated because I wear that bracelet everyday. We recovered maybe half of the beads. When I got home I texted my friends that made the bracelet for me and they said they could fix it the next day. I was so mad at myself, because I knew that I shouldn't have worn it. Live and learn. Now the bracelet was just going to be a replica of the original. Ugh.
Wednesday was a crazy run around day. It did start off with a beautiful sunrise and yoga. Hilary was so in to the Yoga. She usually just sits and watches and thinks we are all crazy, but she was in rare form that morning. Very entertaining for us all.
All day, I just wanted to be home. I had hospital stuff and a funeral and grocery shopping, etc. I didn't finish everything until almost midnight. I was glad to get home and try to rest before today started.
Today started off with SNOW on the mountains. Unbelievable. I should have gone back to bed right then.
About a week ago I was having the feeling that I wanted to watch some video of Tatum. I already feel like time is clouding my memory of her. I was scanning past some pictures on the computer the other day and saw a picture that was video. I clicked on the video button and it turned out that it was only 1 second of video so it really just looked like a picture. It took a lot for me to work up the courage to push that button. It might take me another 4 months to push a video button again. I am sure I will lose it when I see her and hear her on video. Part of me wants to see her and hear her and remember, another part doesn't want to poke at my already wounded heart. You might ask, yeah why would you want to keep looking at her things, or video of her if it makes you so sad. But that is what helps me to not forget her. As much as I don't want to be sad or hurting, those feelings make me know that I am not forgetting her. Sounds so crazy, I know.
As part of my many tasks here at home I decided to go through some piles that I have been avoiding. I knew that one pile had pictures and papers from Tatum. As I started sifting through the first pile, there were pictures from the graveside that I hadn't looked at since our friend brought them over. There were several discs with pictures that I chose not to look at yet. Some days this all just seems like a bad dream that I should wake up from. I can't believe that it has already been four months and yet it has only been four months, not an eternity since we have seen her and smelled her and felt her. I hate time. The more time that passes, the closer I am to seeing her again, but the more time that passes means that I have been away from her longer and that freaks me out. As I was looking through the pictures and the piles I was listening to the Pandora station that we listened to while she was home with us, LDS Hymns of worship. I think that I was trying to feel the spirit that was in our home those last weeks. That music just brings me right back. It was such a special, sweet time. I would give anything to be there again. I just can't believe how much I still hurt and miss her. I am sure that everyone is sick of hearing that. It is just a reality. No matter the kowledge that I have I still miss her and the fact that I am not going to get to see her grow up.
I think something else that has been really bothering me and has probably been bringing a lot of these feelings of panic that we are forgetting Tates is that Hilary has stopped insisting that we pray for Tatum and Trevin to gain weight during our prayers. If we didn't pray for that in every prayer she would freak out after we said amen. We would all have to bow our heads again and say a special prayer that they would gain weight. I think at first it bugged Lance, but I secretly loved it because it confirmed that she remembered. In the past few days she has said other things. Today when she was playing with her friend she showed her a few toys and said these were Tatum's toys, but she could play with them. Then a few days ago she sat down and sighed and said "I miss Tatum". I know that she still remembers. I just don't want this special time of remembering to end. Right now we have "license" to be sad, or randomly cry, we aren't expected to do things that we should be doing, but soon that time will be over and we will be expected to resume life and people will stop asking "how are you doing?" It is just a reality of time. Cruel time.
Today before I left for my meeting at the hospital, Hayden was curled up on the couch sleeping like a little baby.
When I was looking through the pictures at the funeral, there were a few of Hayden and Lance and Holden helping to carry Tatum's casket. It took my breath away at how grown up they looked, and yet how young to have to be shouldering such an enormous task of carrying your baby sisters body to her final resting place. I hope that they can always find the peace that the Savior has to offer them when they think of this time (and other hard times to come) in their lives. I know that is the only way that I have been able to wake up every morning and continue to breath and somewhat function.
As I was looking through the stack of pictures of Tatum's life that we had printed out for her funeral I was overwhelmed with the gratitude that I have for the time we were able to have with her. I selfishly just want more. I can't believe that it is all over. My time with her is frozen and yet the rest of time has to continue moving forward, and I hate it. I can't seem to figure out how to feel OK in this other relm of time. Have I mentioned that I hate it? Everyone keeps growing and time is passing and events keep happening. I just want all other time to freeze, but it can't. In some ways I also want time to pass quickly so that this hurt can be lessened, but I want to enjoy my time with the other kids. I don't want to wish it away, because before I know it they will all be grown up and I will be wishing for this time again, even with the hurt. I feel so conflicted.
Time can be very cruel.