Have you been watching the bachelorette? This season has been awesome. According to Chris Harrison, it is the most dramatic season in bachelor nation history (as they all are!). But there is one contestant for love who truly resonates with me. His name is Dean. Now I do not want to pretend that I know his inner workings but from what I can see from the carefully curated snippets of him, I get him and I like him a lot (although Rachel did not like this young man too much and just sent my boy packing). So yes, he is dreamy and that dynamite smile is so captivating but this last week his emotional state was what was most attractive. Dean has had loss in his life (the kind of which I have not experienced) and his family is eccentric and these two things have shaped him. It was clear after watching his hometown that his life, health, understanding of himself, understanding of love, experiences, and what he wants from his future were shaped in the non-linear path of emotional turmoil. Despite his particular mix of life giving him every reason to be jaded or cruel, he is able to walk in his raw emotions but also step outside of them and be present in the moment and explore the future possibility of love. I get that. Some people might see it as compartmented but it makes a lot of sense to me, that one can occupy both spaces at once.
David and I were snuggled up on the couch when he asked, “How are you doing?” After my emotional rollercoaster of a week, I said fine and he was unable to understand how I could be so fragile and broken a few days ago but seemingly okay today. It is hard to say, but I don’t want to live in the raw and uncomfortable always. I am not so consumed by that pain that I am unable to be like Dean and smile genuinely enjoying the present moment. I carry both of those worlds with me. Both are real, valid, and constant but neither has to dominate or diminish the other. I love my life, my husband, kids and the bubble of awesome we have created and I live here and occupy that emotional space with eyes towards future joys constantly and consistently. Sometimes I ache but feelings, even uncomfortable ones, make us human! I can only hope that by being totally open and honest about emotional health and well-being I become more and more comfortable in my worlds and that I model for my sons how to articulate their emotional spaces and needs. I want them to have the kind of love I have with David. One in which we can get real, get to those sticking places, and continue to love hard and truly because life is complicated but being able to verbally share one’s hardships opens up so so so many doors to beautiful, real joys that go so deep. For me, sharing that emotional space is important. It is what makes the difference in a marriage. It is what helps us become comfortable in our own skin. It helps us move forward without feeling like we need to “play nice” or pretend. It is sexy! And heck, Dean is sexy. So hopefully by the time my boys are ready to go searching for their life partners on a reality dating show or in the wild they will feel ready to be open, honest, and real about their own emotional spaces and draw in the kind of person who forever wants to learn more about them and their hearts, and loves them hard – bumps and all! (Thank you, David)
This week is coming to a close and to be honest I am pretty glad to wrap it up. It has been exhausting. From wacky flights home, to the camp shuffle, to a house full of friends and laughs and a weekend of getting back in order it was a very busy seven days. Emotionally things happened, reflection and repairs were triggered and I am thinking about visiting church today to get centered about those things and to also have some quiet space to remember my nanny who passed away four years ago today. The summer is half way over and I feel like I have not even begun to unwind from it all. I have eaten too much and run for my half-marathon not enough. I think I need to reverse that! But, I made it to naptime today and the quiet of it feels heavenly.
Things feel a bit hard today. The travel part of my Wisconsin weekend has tired me out. My luck was just not good with those flights (but, yes we landed safely and I am grateful for that, just not for the headaches associated). This helps contribute to the rawness of all things. And last night David got his official “zero” from the procedure and I feel a bit numb. It feels as though the progress I told myself I made in these past three months feels for naught now that the reality that the procedure worked was confirmed. I am not sure how I feel. I feel some relief that now we know and there is no more waiting game to play but I also feel alone, depressed, miserable and confused. I want to run away, I want to rewind and start this chapter of my life over again, I want to not feel like an ungrateful cry-baby. I feel like the decision was selfish on David’s part (but there is no real room for compromise, you cannot have half a kid). It just really sucks being the person to have to lose out on this decision. David gets what he wants, I get told be grateful, be happy, move on. I want to stew indefinitely, I want to be taken seriously, I want to be left alone. I want to feel like if I shared these feelings my friends and family would not be tired of hearing me AGAIN complain about my “problem.” I want to stop feeling crazy and to be able to quiet my mind. I want to believe that two kids are enough but I just know in my heart I will forever be missing someone…be missing that little person from my life.
It might have taken 24 hours to get from Boston to Madison but at last I was reunited with Kaelin for our long anticipated bestie weekend! We had such a fantastic time and Kaelin knows how to truly make someone feel at home. From the second I walked off the plane I felt the love and we laughed and ate our way through the next 72 hours. From delicious meals to beautiful walks to relaxing on a pontoon or exploring a lake via paddle board our time together was full of good moments, hugs, laughs, and making lots of memories. Gosh I love my Kaelin so much! Her city is as awesome as she says and I cannot wait to visit with her here again. She is one of a kind and I am going to miss her something fierce (and Rascal the cat too)!
We have been busy. The good kind (mostly). It has been hard to find a minute to really talk about it but now that I am stuck at the airport for 12+ hours I can commit some to writing. It is a much better use of my time than the wallowing I want to be doing in a corner!
A week after school let out, we packed up the boys and hit the road. It was the LONGEST road trip we have ever committed to since having Henry three years ago. To say I was nervous is an understatement. Owen is not a fan of car drives over twenty minutes but he actually did really great! There were some intense moments but we made it to and from Washington D.C. In one piece and had a really great long weekend visiting with grandma and grandpa. The weekend started at the udvar hazay space and air museum and it took us to the natural history museum and Annapolis. It felt so good to travel with the boys, to hug family close, and to see new sights.
Once we unpacked our suitcases back home, it was time to greet mom-mom and pop-pop for a week long visit for Henry’s birthday. We were able to show them our new home, play all day long with them, and celebrate Henry’s birthday! We ate a ton of ice cream, played in waves at the beach in Gloucester, and explored Boston. The boys were great at being packed up for a day and adventuring with their grandparents. Henry’s birthday was also so special. How is our big guy three years old already?!?! It just boggles my mind. But he is so so sweet and independent and chatty that I just love him this way. For both trips he just kept telling everyone he loved them and my heart sort of exploded from it all. It might not be easy changing up routines with littles but it is worth every precious memory!
Now, for trip three. I am trying to head to a girls’ weekend (my first time leaving my little family in three years). After leaving Boston at noon and traveling to Newark on my way to Madison Wisconsin, I got stuck! The flight was eventually cancelled officially at midnight and I high tailed it to a sleepless night at a nearby hotel. Currently I await the opening of the promise land (Starbucks) at 4:30AM and I hope that I make it to Madison to soak up some time with Kaelin and then that the flights home go a bit more smoothly. The biggest take-away so far from this trip: thank goodness I randomly changed out of my contact lenses and into my glasses before checking my suitcase & thank goodness for that half-marathon training. I had to run through two terminals in between two gates and two shuttle buses trying to find some alternative route out and I was not winded. So there was something good about all that! See you in Madison….hopefully.