Letters from my girls

letters of encouragement
So much about this weekend was good and so much was hard. I have another post brewing about how things went down with the boys leaving and DHS “passing the buck” of responsibility on that to someone else and how really nobody takes responsibility and they don’t have to – this is just their job. I have more to say on that, but for now I want to focus on how thankful I am for my girls. They knew I was losing it and that I needed a little getaway. They came up with this packet of encouragement and sent it with me on my trip.

I have good girls.

And I’m thankful for them.

Introvert Vacation

Tampa beachToday I found a municipal beach about a 15 minute walk from my hotel. It provided more of the “beach experience” I was hoping for. No waves, but it did have the sound of moving water and a swimming area, so I was able to get in. I was surprised by how warm the water was. I spent a lovely afternoon out there today and enjoyed watching families and beach food vendors and just soaking it all in. And seriously too, as I did forget to pack my sunscreen and the gift shop was closed, so I managed to get myself burned today.

And I also managed to stuff some emotions in because I simply slept and swam and watched way too much HGTV. And then a storm checked in for the rest of the evening. This was totally okay with me. I had nothing else I needed to do.

It was nice.

Vacation, all I ever wanted…

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…vacation, had to get away.

I was kind of the brink of losing it last week. It’s a long story that is probably better suited to a live conversation and not so much an online one, but suffice it to say that Craig thought I could use a weekend away. By myself. He cashed in some frequent flyer miles and sent me to Tampa.

The beach isn’t really ocean-front in the way I was hoping for. There are no rolling, crashing waves, and there’s really not much of a beach front here at all, but I did manage to find some sand tonight and I’ll take it. The point of the weekend is that I rest and regroup and return better than I left.

As I got news this morning while in Chicago that DHS decided to pick up the boys TODAY, with no notice and while I’m out of town and Maddie and Chloe are away for the weekend too, I’m not sure how restful this weekend is going to be. Because I’m sad and hopping mad.

And there’s not a single thing I can do about it. I’m in Florida.

This is bad.

Car Hitting Garage PoleI’m leaving tomorrow. I’m getting on a plane by myself and heading to a place I’ve never been and I won’t have transportation and I will have the ocean. For the whole weekend.

And in case you need proof why this is necessary, I present to you exhibit A: I backed into a load bearing pole in front of the garage today, knocking it completely off and doing damage to the van.

Because we just needed another big unnecessary and avoidable expense.

Because I’m awesome like that.

 

We’ve entered the youth group stage

White Water BayI keep trying to find the right caption for this photo and failing. I think Maddie and Anna are the only two giving me a true representation of how they were feeling at that moment in time. Funny kids.

And in other news, we’ve officially entered the youth group stage, both in our family and in our church. Maddie and Chloe both have their own Frontier City/White Water Bay season passes and presto: I drop them off with the youth leaders and other kids and say, “Have a great time!” Makes for an easy gig for me, but makes my younger kids bitter. All in good time. We all have to live through the watching everyone else have fun and having to wait our turn stage, right? I took everyone else to the Science Museum, though, so it was a close second.

So I didn’t want to go to church today.

City Presbyterian Church in Oklahoma CityEver have one of those days in which you just want to tape a roll of bubble wrap all around you so you neither feel anything nor break in transit? Yep. I had one of those days today. I’m back to the whole thing of thinking I don’t really show stress that often, but when I do it’s always with tears and always in public. That was pretty much me all day today. Just feeling a combination of exhausted, alone, misunderstood, and all around yucky. I did not want to go to church today. I made myself go, but only because Chloe was scheduled to play the prelude. And as much as I’d love to tell you this is one of those stories of pushing through and going anyway and being so glad you did, that really didn’t happen yesterday. I sat in the furthest back corner all by myself on purpose. I walked out when the “meet and greet” time happened. I cried through most of the service and have no idea what Doug preached on. I took communion, but I’m wondering now if maybe I shouldn’t have. I then left a note for my girls telling them I would be in the van and I bolted 5 minutes before dismissal because I didn’t want to have to talk to anybody.

And I don’t have any lovely way to wrap this up other than to say that some days are just like this. And I wonder if it’s possible to feel the foster care equivalent of postpartum depression and if that’s maybe where I’m going with this.

I have no idea. So I hope tomorrow will be better and I’ll try again next week.

 

The (literal) Calm After the (not so proverbial) Storm

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I could lament the fact that it’s already June 1 and I’m going to blink and we’ll be back in school already. Summer, I implore you, let us enjoy you. Enjoyment would come a little easier if we’d stop getting tornadoes here. Yesterday’s version of tornadoes in Oklahoma was about as unnerving as any I’ve ever experienced and I’ll just say this: I was glad to wake up this morning to beautiful skies, cool summer morning, kids scattered all over the house, and only our own normal every day chaos.

Tonight I took the kids mini-golfing and then we got ice cream cones and headed to the playground at Lake Hefner at 8:30pm where this was happening right then. I could stare at that forever. It’s about the closest thing we get to a beach sunset here and I have to take it where I can. So here it is.