Winging It

In any given day, I go through a whirlwind of emotions. In any given hour, I go through a whirlwind of thoughts and decisions.

That’s what this life is, a whirlwind.

We don’t have full control but we are able to make decisions about our path and sometimes there isn’t much time to think about it.

Maybe we are supposed to just “wing it”.

I know in motherhood, I wing it all the time! I have no idea what I’m doing but my kid still loves me so I’m doing it right. Some nights I make her  a nutritious meal, some times, we just eat cereal. I’m winging it but I love it.

It’s a weird concept for me to “wing it” considering I schedule my life on two separate white boards in my home… one in my bathroom so I see it every morning and night, and one in my mud room  so I see it everytime I come and go.

I’ve always been a planner with high hopes and big dreams. This hasn’t changed but my outlook and approach have recently.

The best part about scheduling on a white board is it can be erased.

After joining the gym and seeking mental health assistance, I decided, more so realized, I’m doing too much! Although I have all of these high hopes and big dreams, I don’t have to do them all in the first year since losing Josh! I was killing myself  trying to force my path when really all I needed was to take a step back and breathe.

School will still be there when I’m ready. My current job doesn’t require a bachelor’s degree and it was merely a goal.  My future would be open to even more possibilities with a BSN however, I will take my time on this one because soon, I may be pregnant.

Through all of the things I’ve been keeping up with, I was also still driving to the cities to continue the IVF process. I will find out in two weeks if it worked!!

In my previous post I spoke of the strength to keep forging a fire. There’s still strength in realizing too much is too much! I don’t have to set fire everytime I leave my house.

I’m glad someone was willing to speak up and say very bluntly to me “You’re doing too much to avoid the grief” because it stopped me in my tracks and made me reevaluate.

Suddenly, I began doing more things for myself and instead of focusing on maintaining grace, I allowed grace for myself.

I started off more growth with something I thought I’d never do, a photo shoot wearing nothing but undergarments! Never have I ever viewed myself as sexy and beautiful but in one half day photo shoot my confidence was boosted! I still can’t believe I did it but I also can’t stop looking at how great it all turned out!

Huge shout out to Sugar &Spice Photography for giving me such an incredible experience that has helped me change the way I view myself! It was so empowering!

I temporarily suspended school, and I dropped out of dating last month too. I was content being alone knowing I’d be raising two kids alone. My standards are high and I was even told “unrealistic”. Still I just shrugged my shoulders and said “so be it”.

I started going to more events alone because I needed to be out in public just to be away from the house and truly, it’s ok to do things alone. I’m strong enough to handle it.

One of Joshs sergeants was retiring and I decided, since I had taken the day off from work to do an ultrasound in the morning, that I would spend my night, wishing her well! Her and I had a rocky start when Josh was in the academy but now she’s a good friend!

It was at this retirement party that you’d think you’re safe from the thought of meeting anyone, especially after determining you were “over it” when it comes to dating. Most attendees are married and or drunk and really, who goes to a retirement party and leaves with a phone number? Apparently, I do.

so that happened.

I gave up dating and school and slowed down on business but God just didn’t want me to be alone.

His plans always astound me. A retirement party? Seriously.

Anyways, it’s been pretty great! It’s not been long but he has proven to me that I am worth it and he will be there. He even took me to my IVF appointment for egg transfer and then stayed to take care of me.

Quite the gentleman if I must say so myself.

So as for this new dating journey, I’m winging it. I’m throwing my cares to the wind and rolling with it. He is willing to date a potentially pregnant woman who also has a toddler and he is doing it well so far! He jumped right on in knowing that he has the potential to be

more than just “mommy’s boyfriend” and that at this early stage- the future only means he could be called “Dad”.

That part doesn’t scare me either. My kids calling someone else “Dad”. It’s inevitable. They will have a daddy in heaven and hopefully, a daddy here on earth. Whether he was found at a retirement party or not, it’s bound to happen.

I am very grateful for hanging out at that party for as long as I did and for walking back in to get the number of that cute guy! Jesse, since you were too chicken shit to ask, you’re welcome!

Speaking of chicken shit, he has chickens, and goats…. this city girl keeps landing a country gentleman who cares deeply about those they choose and even opens up doors! I haven’t seen the huge belt buckle yet but maybe that’s outdated now? Then again, I’ll be headed to tractor pulls this summer because I said I would…. I’ve gone country ya’ll!

My life is a whirlwind of winging it these days and I am so excited to ride the breeze!

I’ve got a new mindset and a new confidence so here goes nothing!

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer”-Romans 12:12



Terrible, Thanks for Asking

It’s been about two weeks since I last had the energy to write.  I wanted to many times but my body and mind just couldn’t. So many emotions and heartbreak came to surface after I arrived back from Los Angeles.

I went to Los Angeles on a business trip again to gain insight into myself and my business. What learning was had! My biggest take away was and still is “You can’t lead a team until you know who you are”.

So I began digging into who I am. The truth is I’m still learning. I’ve been so busy staying busy and making sure I push forward that I skipped over the part where I address the past.

I started digging so deep, I forgot to come up for air. On the outside I was smiling but internally I was suffocating myself.

I don’t know if anyone noticed because I like to tell myself that I do a pretty darn good job of hiding it. Then James, one of Josh’s partners from State Patrol shows up and basically guilts me into going to the gym, which leads to lunch and conversation. This led to a rolling ball of change.

I sought help and joined a gym. Then sought out mental health assistance.

There is no one set way to handle grief and it is so lonely. You’re never fully ok and each day is different even months after…

Sometimes the joy in life gives you wings but sometimes the pain cuts your soul like a knife. It’s hard to decide at any given moment if you’re flying or  bleeding.

Only one thing is certain through it all. Quitting is not an option.

So, I continue to run forward with a full plate and uncertainty of who I am but I am learning. After losing the one person I loved the most, I’ve cried tears uncontrollably and I’ve laughed at new things and old memories.

There’s fear, there’s hope, there’s loss, there’s grace.

I’m terrible, thanks for asking.

I can only hope I am maintaining grace through all of the pain. I was told my kid is happy and doing well and that it isn’t by accident. So, I know I am doing something right.

Two days ago I came up with the title for this post. Still I didn’t write. Then, yesterday, through this very outlet, I received an email from an old friend, Jay. Some of you may recognize this name from Josh’s Caring Bridge as he seems to come around exactly when his encouragement is needed. Jay overcame cancer and continues to live life to the fullest and never fails to forget those he met along the way.

The last time I saw Jay (and first time we met in person) was at Josh’s benefit. It’s been a very long time. Suddenly, I have an inbox from him that was so needed.

People seem to be afraid of the answer to the infamous “How are you doing?” question so they stop asking in fear they won’t know how to respond if I say anything other than “good”.

Psalm 121 tells me that my help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.  I’ve read the Psalm more than once since receiving it from Jay.

As I sit at the back of this coffee shop and try to hide the tears streaming down my face, I look around to see so many stories. Each one different than my own.

There’s a pair of friends who seem to have not seen each other in a while playing musical chairs until they reached the table they were hoping for. Two tables down is a man waiting while writing in his journal and ordering breakfast for himself and his girlfriend so its ready when she arrives, a pair of girls having a girls morning brunch, coworkers discussing very pertinent things and a waitress solely focused on giving those a good experience while here at her cafe.

I often wonder what their stories are. How different they must be from mine.

One thing is for sure, through any pain, the resistance against quitting got us all here to this cafe to smile, sip, and continue pushing forward to find happiness in our own lives regardless of what it looks like.

I’ve now learned in a bit of the hard way that I must face my past to fully move forward. My life was not a fairytale before Josh came along. He made my life exponentially better. He was my knight and my hero. It shook my faith to its core but it also ignited a fire in my soul that I beg the world to keep up with.

Some say I’ve taken on so much to avoid thinking about my grief… I say to those, you are right. It is easier to stay busy then to feel tears at every minute of every day. I will grieve, in time. On account of my faith and hope, I am able to blaze a trail for myself. That does not come without a few burns along the way but I will forever have the strength to keep moving on.

I decided to ask my waitress her name…. Theresa. I then asked “How are you doing?” There was a hesitation in her eyes and then clarification, “in this moment or in general?”  We began to talk and in a few short minutes I found she is going for her PhD and dicertatcion is taking longer than she had hoped. She lost two brothers close together and is 1 of 7. After revealing the loss of two brothers, she says, “We can all fit into one minivan now!” Because those who have lost know the importance of humor in even the darkest of circumstances. You can see she works hard and I have no doubt all of her dreams will come true and her trusty four legged companion will be there through it all. Thank you for sharing your story Theresa. Even on your tough days keep pushing. You’re doing great!

As I sat observing the young couple where the gentleman ordered her breakfast, I noticed her looking at Isaiah 40:10 which has carried me more than once.  Finally I saw her looking at other sayings and decided I would again step out of my comfort zone and ask if I could take a photo of her screen and introduced myself.  They are Toby and Kaelyn. Thanks guys for letting me interrupt you and take a photo! I know your friend is going to appreciate all of the notes because I appreciated seeing the reminders from tables away.

Don’t be afraid to ask someone “How are you doing”. Even if you get a “Terrible, Thanks for asking” response. You never know how long it’s been since someone has given them two minutes to check in. Never be afraid of a less than stellar reply. Everyone has a story.

You never know who the next person is that will inspire you to continue forging a fire.