I got Hilary some breakfast and told her that I was going downstairs to run on the treadmill, to come and get me if she needed me. Once I was on the treadmill, I felt better. I was down there for almost an hour when I heard Hilary crying. I went upstairs to see what was wrong. When I got upstairs there was Hilary standing in a puddle, holding paper towels in her hand, sobbing. I immediately knew that she had peed her pants! She could see that I was not happy, especially when I realized that she had walked all through the kitchen to get to the paper towels to try and clean it up. I picked her up and put her in the sink to wash her up. I told her that she was a big girl and knew how to go to the potty all by herself and that I was not happy that she had peed on the floor. I raised my voice at her. All that I could see was that I was going to have to clean the entire floor now. Add that to my list. Ugh. After I got her cleaned up and dressed, I quickly mopped up the floor. then I went and sat on the couch with Hilary and told her how very sorry I was that I had raised my voice and that I had been mad at her. I told her that she was the most important thing in my life and that I was wrong to be mad. We all make mistakes. Her feelings were so hurt. Her little tears were so real. How could I have not dealt with that better? After all that I know, after all of these years? Good grief. Not my most shining mother moment. For the next little bit I sat there with her and we snuggled and talked. Maybe it needed to happen for me to slow down and just take those special moments with her. She is it. This is going to be our last little person. I love her and everything that she says and does, how could I have so little self control? Thank goodness for repentance and the forgiving heart of a 3 year old. Halea keeps saying that we need to record every word that she says because she is at such a fun and funny age. I am so grateful to be her mom. She has literally saved me these past 8 months. My life would be so different had we not had her.
Luckily I had a lunch date with a good friend that day. It was nice to get out of the house and try to start fresh. That night my friend and I went to a work dinner that was really fun. We work with really fun and amazing people.
Saturday morning was our Stake Women's Conference. This is a meeting that is always uplifting and enlightening. I always feel excited when I go. This was no different. Our keynote speaker was our neighbors daughter who is an LDS author and all around amazing person. I have heard her speak several times and she never disappoints. Her knowledge of the scriptures and good ideas are always inspiring. She gave some constructive thoughts on scripture study and some great thoughts about coming to Christ. Then there were three classes that we got to attend. Each hour we got to choose from three classes. It was really hard to choose. The first one I went to was about the Priesthood. It was fabulous and very enlightening. The next one I chose was "A Little More Forgiving in our Families", I guess hoping that my family would some how forgive me for being such a grump! The last one was "Powerful Parenting Principles". The last lady was really funny and insightful. Then we had a nice lunch. It was really a great morning, spent where I knew I needed to be. Trying to learn how to be a better me, and better parent.
Sunday morning Halea was giving a talk in Sacrament meeting, Lance was participating in a sharing time for Primary in another ward, I was teaching a Sunday school lesson, Lance was giving a talk in another wards sacrament meeting and Heidi was giving a talk at our New Beginnings Program tonight. It felt like the Walker show. Our Sacrament meeting was amazing. Halea's talk was on obedience and it was wonderful. As I was listening to her I was thinking that maybe she should write my talks from now on. She is so spiritually mature. She was the "youth" speaker, but you would have never known that. So very proud of her. Then our cute neighbor boy got up to give his missionary farewell. It was truly by far the best talk I have heard in a very long time. Really, the best missionary farewell talk I have ever heard. This young man expressed with such enthusiasm his excitement and deep understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It was inspiring. The spirit was so strong. I will never forget it. So proud of him, and the choices that he has made to go and share the good news with his brothers and sisters in Chile.
My Sunday school lesson was interesting. I had planned a few activities for the kids to do to help them be active in the lesson. As I was walking to the class I had a few different ideas come to my mind of what I needed to talk to them about. The lesson went really different than what I had planned, but I think that I followed the spirit of what they needed to hear. I worry so much about their generation with all of the distractions that they face. I can see that the feelings of the gospel are sometimes foreign to them. It makes me so nervous for my kids. I hope that I am led in how to teach them and love them in a way that will foster their ability to absorb the teachings of the gospel and to help them to have a desire to have a relationship with their Savior.
After church we ran home and got a bite to eat and then ran over to the church where Lance was speaking. Halea and Heidi came with me. When we got there the man that was speaking right before Lance was just finishing up his talk. When he sat down, Lance had about 35 minutes to kill! The most that the last speaker usually has is about 20 minutes. I knew Lance had prepared a lot of information, but all weekend I kept telling him that he always prepared too much and that he was probably going to have to cut out half of his talk! I was really hoping that he had not heeded my advice. Luckily he didn't. He had plenty of funny stories and info to easily fill the time and leave a great message about the importance of tithing. He is a great speaker and always interesting, so it was fun to hear him.
Tonight we had our New Beginnings night for the Young Women of our ward. I knew that it was going to be sort of weird for me to not be involved, but I was trying to be OK with it. I just miss those girls and the amazing time that I was able to spend with them. The leaders and the girls did an amazing job. It was really a nice program. We really do get to live among amazing people. When we got home from the church, there were these crazy cardboard things sitting on the counter. Holden had fashioned "jet packs" for he and Hilary, out of cardboard! He is so super creative. He absolutely drives me crazy with it, but I love that part of him.
Here are he and Hilary wearing their jet packs.
It seems like everywhere I go these days there are little two year olds. I just can't help but wonder and miss what we are missing. Every cute thing that Hilary does I keep thinking, we will never see Tatum do that. I just can't stop missing her. Not that I really want to, but I just wish it didn't come with such pain. I had an epiphany the other day. All of the data of people that grieve show that there is often times a severe dip, or depression or relapse of some sort around the six month mark after a loss. I have seen it professionally time and time again. People feel like they are making progress and then some unseen thing triggers them into a tail spin. I have always wondered why that happens. The other day when I was driving home I was thinking about it, because I am right in that time frame. I was evaluating how I have been feeling. I feel, better. More emotionally in control. I don't cry as much, as long, or as hard. I still cry almost every day, but it is much more manageable. I feel happy more than I feel sad. I am able to function a little better. Sometimes I feel almost "normal", and I feel glimmers of the good parts of my old self coming through. I laugh a little easier and harder like I used to. All of these things are seemingly good, unless you are grieving the loss of a major person in your life. As I started thinking about all of this it made me feel uneasy and sad. The thoughts of "am I forgetting Tatum" and "how could I imagine feeling joy again" came to my mind and my heart. It feels like a battle inside of me, of trying to carry on, move forward as a better person for having known her, but wanting to freeze time because the further I move through time the further I feel away from her. That is an awful, dark, sad feeling. It is the acceptance that she is truly gone. And I hate it.
In our Relief Society class that we are studying the Saviors life, we talked about the miracle where a man with palsy was brought before the Savior. His friends had brought him, carrying him on his couch. When they got there the room where the Savior was teaching was too crowded for them to push through with their friend on the couch, and so they decided to carry him to the roof and lower him down through a hole in the ceiling so that he could be healed by Jesus Christ. They had great faith that the Savior could heal their friend. In Luke 5:18-28 this story is told. Jesus tells the man that he is healed and commands him to arise and take his couch and go into his own house. Not only does Christ heal him, he heals him enough so that he has the strength to carry his own couch home with him! For some reason this struck me. I know that He has the power to heal my broken heart. Not only can He heal it, but make it better and stronger than it was before. I know that with every fiber of my being. I feel that happening within me. I just wish that I could reconcile my feelings of missing Tatum and wanting her to be here with me. I am so grateful for the changes within me, it just hurts right now. I am feeling myself emerge from the ashes of this past year. I am so grateful for the good friends and family that I have had that have carried me on my couch and have waited patiently with me as I allow the healing power of the Atonement to work on me.