Namaste, Bitches

Y’all, I may or may not be slowly losing my damn mind. Like biting my tongue so much I’m shocked I still have a fucking tongue. Lets back up just a touch. Okay so I’ve been sick. Nothing major just a minor head cold I picked up from a younger sibling. We’re all doing much better now, I’ll have to check in on her mom though. She wasn’t doing so well a few days ago. Hopefully she’s feeling better by now!

My fiance taught me how to fish with a big girl rod πŸ˜€ I should explain. I was a child, maybe about 8 the last time I went fishing. Back in the day with the super sweet Scooby poles. You remember, you push a button and fling. The line comes out. Easy peasy. I’d never used an adult pole in my adult life. We want to be more active and fishing is included. I had a few really stupid questions such as “umm there’s no button on here….how do I make it go?” Which actually turns out to be much easier than I thought! So I’ve graduated to an adult rod! We’ve gone out these last 2 or 3 weekends, I think. We haven’t caught any fish yet. He did get to touch a duck though. This one spot we go to is frequented by these 2 geese and a duck. I’m not sure why this duck swims with the geese, they’re assholes to him. Anyways. They seem to be used to being around people. They’re kinda chill like that. Kinda, because they’re still assholes to this duck. So yea. He got to touch a duck. Then I promptly made him sanitize his hands πŸ˜€ Yea I carry that shit with me. Everywhere. You never know when you’ll need it.

I’ve jumped on this weight gain journey. I’m about 5 foot 9. I weigh 115 on a good day. I’ve asked my doctor about 10 thousand times if there’s something wrong with me, I can’t gain weight. They’ve assured me 10 thousand times that there is absolutely nothing wrong with me, I am 100% healthy. All my levels are where they need to be, everything checks out. Either way I would like to weigh a more normal weight. I’ve added Ensure to my lifestyle changes. One of many on this quest. I’m not using it as a meal replacement, but as a supplement. Sometimes it’s easier to get extra calories by drinking them rather than eating them. So we’ll see how that goes. If I’m brave enough I’ll post before and during pictures. It’s going to take time but I’m going to make it happen! My minimum goal is to add 20 pounds. Ideally I’d like to add 30. At this point any weight gain is a major plus.

Father’s day happened just yesterday. That’s a day I don’t want to touch up on. Like the huge long overly mushy I love my family type post. It would just take too long because I have way too many dads in my life that I’d want to acknowledge. I will say that my father absolutely hates a certain thing that sounds like schedible schrrangments. Every time he sees the commercial for these he says how fucking stupid they are and how he never fucking wants one. His words. So for the last 6 years I’ve always joked that I’m getting him one. Yesterday was finally the day. We made it 2 hours before they closed. When we got home he was taking a nap so we put it in the fridge and left him a note “Happy Father’s Day! Here’s that stupid fucking schedible schrrangment you never wanted -R&K” πŸ˜€ He loved it. And yes he’s actually eating it. I know, I’m impressed as well.

Umm… I’m not sure anything else has happened. OOOOH! Yes. Yes it did! OH MY GOSH! Y’all… y’alllllll…. Alright, listen to this. This is the most fucked up thing. I swear. It’s no secret I have OCD. I’m very picky about my hands and touching certain things, the way things feel on my hands. GERMS! Okay. I’m cleaning the house. It’s a decent Oregon day. Meaning cold, grey, gloomy. Beautiful. Now with a toddler in the house its not uncommon to find all kinds of food on the floor after she leaves. Usually I just pick up the big stuff and put it in my pocket while I’m vacuuming. So it’s light enough outside I didn’t really need the lights on. I bend down to pick up what I think is a piece of cookie. Y’all. I wish I was joking. I really do. The second I touched this “cookie” I knew damn well it wasn’t a cookie! I went from totally cool to losing my damn mind in .2 seconds. I didn’t even know what it was at this point. I instantly dropped it. Terrified to actually look at it. I just kept telling my other sister “that wasn’t a cookie! That. Wasn’t. A. Cookie!” She’s looking at me like I’m a straight up loon. I gather myself and bend down to look. IT. WAS. A. FUCKING. DEAD. MOTH! I picked up a dead fucking moth with my hands! I could have cried. I had to wash my hands 3 times. Under nails, up to elbows, hottest water I could stand. Lesson learned.

As soon as I can figure out how to word the things I want to say, I’ll explain the whole namaste thing. There’s just so much to that. I don’t even know where to start. I just need to step back. Take a breathe. Just be cool. Mellow out. Okay, so until next time!

-XOXO

Lets Play Catch…

Up. Get it? The title links with the post… I’m so clever. Okay, no, seriously. Before I can start sharing where I’m at right now, I have to fill you in on what has happened since I went missing. I’ve had a few posts here and there about it so this shouldn’t take too long.

Right. So for starters I’ve been with RE for a bit over two years now. We’re both about to be 27, we met when we were 14. Our parents worked together and became friends. They Romeo and Juliet-ed us. Not like in a warring families kind of way, but like a stay the heck away from each other kind of way. Teen dating drama or some weird shit like that. Anyways. We’ve stayed in touch over the years. He’s always been a great friend. We went through similar situations and that actually kind of brought us together. Our dating story cut short: He’s amazing. He and my father are the best of friends and it actually kind of makes me want to puke. In a that’s so cute and weird kind of way. Think Cory and Topanga… and Shawn… Wherein my father is Shawn…

Okay, now that we have that part established. We were engaged about 4 months after we started dating because we weren’t fucking strangers who had just met. We’ve known each other for something like 13 years now. He’s been my best friend since forever. Duh. Had it been some dude I had just met 4 month prior trying to ask me to marry his crazy ass, I’d have left him on the spot. Like whoa, bruh you don’t even KNOW me! Cool your jets, turbo. 2 years minimum to sign up for that kind of commitment from this girl.

Something like a week after he proposed (which was amazing by the way and totally true to who we are. He proposed penguin style, y’all. Like searched for the perfect pebble and all that. Melted my heart!) we bought a house together. Nothing fancy. Just a 2 bed, 2 bath. Semi gated community. I say semi gated because the side gates are always open and any old Joe could walk in at any time. So it wasn’t anything special. But they did have a no soliciting sign posted for the whole community and that’s a pretty big plus, folks!

I think we moved in like June 26th 2015 or around there. Sounds right to me… June 30th 2015 we finally realized my period was quite a bit late. We were so caught up in being engaged and BUYING our first house, it didn’t even dawn on us. So we, well I, took a test. All that jazz. Yea. Positive. A few days later and a lot of other positives, we’re pregnant. After 5 years and 1 month of trying. Just a bit over 5 weeks. Until we lost the pregnancy.

Cue my major depression. Which led to a lot of things happening. Like me leaving two jobs. One of which was by far the best and highest paying job I’ve ever had in my life and I fucking loved it. BUT the only lady in the office who was also of childbearing age decided to announce she was pregnant around my due date. So I lost my shit. I actually contemplated my ability to crawl out this itty bitty window in the break room. I’m certain I could have fucking octopused my way through had it come down to it. I had to sit at my desk for a full day pretending like I wasn’t crying. Yea. Game over. Couldn’t hack it. I will admit I was weak. I really couldn’t do it.

Then R was having issues at his work. Right. I don’t want to get too much into his stuff on here. But they gave him the option: Either be fired or walk away, which will look better on your resume. So he walked. With his head held high! Soooo… we had this brilliant idea to get an RV of some kind. We’d give everything back (the house, the car, everything) and we’d make our way across America, doing odd jobs off Craigslist to keep us going. Sounds fucking amazing right? Like who doesn’t wish they could that shit in their lifetime? Well… it’s not all that easy as it turns out. Like it actually requires a lot of planning. And supportive families. Neither of our families wanted us gone for anything more than a weekend πŸ˜€

So we didn’t do any of that. We grabbed a tent and an air mattress. Packed up what little of our house we actually cared about and left the rest behind. We stayed at his family’s for a bit. They had an unfinished shed/mancave type building that we stayed in for a few months. Until we couldn’t do that anymore. Around Nov. some crazy bullshit went down, resulted in me having to give my Abby girl to a new home. Because some people just can’t mind their own business. Even though everything was resolved in a way that worked for everyone. I don’t want to get into it. It still fucking pisses me off and breaks my heart. Anyways…

We currently live with my parents πŸ™‚ Which works really well for us actually. And then… there’s always an “and then” isn’t there? My brother and his girlfriend moved in. Now that’s a topic I’m not even going to touch with a 10 foot pole. Not my life, not my business. But it does tend to make things a LOT more hectic. Like our once nice flow is all disrupted and chaotic. Which drives me pretty much bonkers. But it’s whatever. Life is life and life is beautiful. We just keep smiling. Which probably makes us look insane.

Maybe a tad bit longer than I had planned on, but I think that’s really about all you need to be caught up on. Oh just for anyone wondering, yes R is working again. Has been for quite some time now. He works from late afternoon to just after midnight, sometimes later. So my schedule matches his. He’s looking for a day job instead so we can both work. Two incomes are better than one! For now I do some at home type work that gets me a little bit of income here and there. Every little bit helps πŸ™‚

With love, XOXO

No More Hiatus!

So… we meet again. In the last two years I’ve been very off and on. Which I deeply apologize for. I went into a pretty deep depression for a good bit of time (I’ll spare you the details for now). I didn’t mean to keep you waiting…much like a favorite BBC show that makes you wait 3 years for 3 new episodes!!! I FEELΒ your pain. I hear your cries. I’m back. Along with keeping up with this blog, much like before, I’ll also be changing a few things. When I first started, this blog was what I needed it to be. But, like myself, things change. It’s inevitable my friends. No worries though. I will be posting more regularly (YAY!!!!) I’ll just be trashing some of my older posts and basically starting over brand new πŸ™‚

For my loyal readers that never gave up on me or abandoned me… I love and adore you πŸ™‚ I really do. Thank you for never turning your back on me. I have SOOOO many things to tell you! Oh. My. Gosh. Y’all have no idea. I’m actually really excited to get you all caught up.

For potentially new readers, I’ve kept it pretty mild in this post so far. Fair warning: I’m not a lady… I mean I am a lady… but I swear. A. Lot. I also tend to type without much of a filter. I know. Totally not professional for a blogger. I’m not a professional blogger. I’m just a lady sat at home who throws her thoughts at the page and what sticks, sticks πŸ˜€ I’m not even sorry about it. I can promise you this, I’ll avoid anything and everything political πŸ™‚ You’re welcome for that. It’s not that I don’t care, or that I don’t have an opinion. It’s just I don’t even talk politics with my family and I actually love those dinkballs. So. That’s just the way it is.

For everyone, you can pretty much expect a lot of the same. I’ll talk to you like we’re old friends meeting up at the corner cafe for a chat over tea. You can always chat back if you wish. I love hearing from you! Sooo…. yup. That’s about it for now I think. Keep an eye out for the upcoming changes and new posts πŸ™‚

With Love, XOXO

Ladies and Gentlemen

Your attention, please! Hey, hi, hello πŸ™‚ It’s me! I know, I know….”but Katie, you’ve been gone for so long! Where did you go? What’s been happening?” I’m here to answer all that and more. First off, I left off with a certain post. Anyone who has been following my blog knows that I struggle with infertility. Massively. Last June, after 5 years and 1 month of trying, we found out we were pregnant πŸ™‚ Life was good. We had just bought a house and got engaged. Then boom, unexpectedly (I say unexpectedly because we honestly never thought it would happen) two pink lines. Not a close your left eye, turn in a circle three times, rub your tummy, pat your head to see it kind of line either. I mean bright pink, bam in your face, no denying it positive. Other than a missed period the only real “sign” (I say “sign” because if you know me, you know everything is a “sign”) I had was insane sleepiness. I could not stay awake for the life of me. I think in total I tested about 8 times with 3 different brands just to make sure it was actually happening. We went in, set up my first ultrasound. All that fun stuff. Took a little road trip because we had to. Got back home a few days later and I didn’t exactly feel right?Β I mean I had never been pregnant before so I wasn’t really sure what was normal and what wasn’t. We were walking around Walmart when I felt a wet spot in my pants. TMI? Nah. I’ve shared worse here. We were closer to my parents house than ours. We dropped by, I checked it out. Sure enough brown spotting. Which can be normal in early pregnancy. Brown blood is old blood. We’re totally safe… Later on we got home and took a nap, again I couldn’t stay awake! I had a dream that we had lost our little poppy. Which put me into a panic. Needless to say I woke up wanting to test just to see that line again. Before I even sat down to pee the red blood started. LOTS of it. Like there’s no way this is normal kind of bleeding. Don’t even get me started on the amount of pain involved. I still peed on the test. Super squinter of a line. I walked out to my fiancΓ© who was patiently waiting for an update. Before I could say anything I just started bawling. He hugged me and told me it would be okay. I was close to 5 weeks.

I didn’t mean to disappear. Honestly. Losing the pregnancy after trying for so long to get there just really hit me hard. I was depressed for the better part of a year. I lost two jobs because of it. Dealing with pregnant women, baby showers, and pregnant coworkers. I went into extreme avoidance mode. It was a really dark period of time for me. It’s been over a year now (miscarried July 2nd 2015) and I’m ready to get back at it. I wish I could start this off with good news and say that in the year since the miscarriage we ended up pregnant again…. but we haven’t. Right back to the same as before. BUT!!! I do have all kinds of other news to share with you πŸ™‚ So if you’ve been following me, waiting, it’s so good to see your faces again. If you’re new around here, hi πŸ™‚ Let me just say it feels good to be back!

Guess Who’s Back!!!!

Wow, so I didn’t intend on just up and disappearing… but some major life changes have taken place in the last few months.

MAJOR!

For starters I got in touch with someone from my past, someone none of my followers have even heard mention of, that’s how far back we go. Once he came back into my life, I found myself with less and less time to keep updating my blog. Life was just too exciting!

We bought our first home πŸ™‚ That’s been a whole new journey in itself. And will probably have a ton of posts of it’s own.

I finally got pregnant. If you followed my blog before, you know how incredible that news is… I do have to warn you… we did miscarry. So that alone will have a ton of posts. Be prepared.

We got ENGAGED! I know, I know. I swore up and down I would never marry again. That it just wasn’t for me. Yea, yea, yea. I’m aware. He’s just that amazing. I’m sure I’ll have a million posts dedicated just to him. Like that’s what you really want to hear about. We’re actually getting married in about 8 days! Not much time, but we’re just so excited and can’t wait. I’ve never been so excited in my entire life. I’ve had plenty to be excited about, but this is just the best decision I’ve ever made. Hands down.

Umm… a few other things on the family front that I may blog about. Change some names around to protect privacy and such. Such as my little sister’s first birthday πŸ™‚ That was pretty huge and I’m so glad I got to be apart of her special day. She really is just such a joy to be around. I adore her.

My other older than K, but younger than me, sister started high school! Tragedy. Okay, over-dramatic. I can’t help it. That’s been so much fun {translation: NOT REALLY} It’s a whole new ballgame.

Anywho those are some key updates to tide you over for now. I will sit down tonight [probably not tonight] and sort through everything. Maybe overhaul the blog a bit. Find a new direction because so much has changed. Clean it all up. Get things back up and running again!!!!! I’m so excited to be back πŸ™‚ I can’t wait to hear from everyone, see what everyone has been up to, and to fill everyone in on what’s been going on behind the scenes the past 8 months.

Calling All Mothers

I don’t want to sound like a bitch, I really hope it doesn’t come across that way. But I do want to be honest (Which is often mistaken for being a bitch) πŸ˜€ I’ve seen a lot of my mama friends post a picture that says “I could have sworn I had friends before I had kids.” I’m pretty sure a lot of people know the picture I’m talking about.

Let me just say this: You might feel that way, but honestly most of you (the ones I know anyway), did it to yourselves. Once you have children, it’s natural to want your child to be around other children. As a woman struggling with infertility, I have no children. Meaning your time with me has been cut down drastically. I will admit when you first got pregnant and had the baby shower and all that… I wasn’t around. Things like that are a bit hard for me to deal with. Because I’m faced with potentially never having any of that. When it was time to see the new baby, that was my fault again. I can tell you 10 times out of 10, I will not go and see a newborn. Again this is just something that’s hard for me to deal with. It’s not fun for me to sit around a maternity ward surrounded by newborns and new mothers. Yes, I did it once. Only because the newborn was my half sister. I sucked it up for her sake. She’s family. Not to say I don’t love my friends to death… just that’s something I don’t feel like I ABSOLUTELY need to be there for. Chances are I’m not going to be super involved in your child’s life.

Birthday parties, also my fault. Usually it’s a huge gathering of children. I’m childless. It’s not fun hanging out with a group of mothers, or soon to be mommies all talking about babies and kids. I have nothing to add to these conversations. Usual every day hang outs… that’s where it’s your fault. You have a child, suddenly your childless friends get tossed aside to make way for other mommies. This is a group I’m not in. I probably won’t be in for a long time. You want to talk for countless hours about a funny poop story, or how baby wouldn’t sleep, or baby won’t latch on, or doctors appointments, or baby did this and that, and so many other things. I don’t have a child for your child to play with, I’m shunned. You’ve started a new club, the mommy club. That’s a club I can’t get into. You kinda need to have a kiddo to be in the exclusive mommy club.

Point being, once you have a kid, you enter this club. Those of us without kiddos… we’re kinda left standing in the cold. It’s natural to want your child to be around other children… but mamas, please don’t forget about your childless friends. It’s not our fault we don’t have kids. And stop with the “I could have sworn I had friends before I had kids” bit. You’re the ones who stopped including us in get togethers. We’re still your friends. We just feel a bit forgotten.

Grandpa

I’ve spoken (well, written) very little of my grandpa on here. When I probably should have been spending more time focusing on him. In past posts I’ve talked about the times I spent with him recently and about his Alzheimer’s. I’ve put this post off for a day past a week. It is with great sadness that I say this, he passed away last Wednesday. And while I’m sad for everyone he left behind (especially my grandmother and my father), I am filled with relief for him. I can’t even being to imagine life with Alzheimer’s. It’s like grandma said, the hard part is over for him, now the rest of us just need to figure it out. As much as I wish I could have some semblance of flow for this post, I’m basically writing it without restraints. As it comes to me. It might be long. It might be rambly. Oh well.

When I was a child, my grandfather scared me. He was quite a tall man. I was quite a small child. That was the extent of my terror. It really was that simple. He was a kind, loving, caring, gentle man. Never raised his voice. Mostly kept to himself. It was rare when he would invite me into his life. That made it all the more special when he shared something he loved with me. I lived for those moments. I remember when we were teeny tiny and we’d come home from school with a case of head lice. He’d be the one who set a light up at the table, give us a pillow to lay our heads on, and spend hours with his microscope (one that had a stand and could be adjusted, he was super into gold panning at the time) going through our hair. Never once complaining. I’m pretty sure he’s also the one who taught us how to find a good cow pie to fling. It’s good fun when you grow up on a farm. He loved gardening and flowers. He LOVED flowers. His yard always looked incredible.

I also have this memory, I’m not sure I’m supposed to have it. I don’t think they wanted us kids to know about it at the time, because we were so young. It was winter and one of the sheep had given birth. Two lambs. The rest of the family was away for some reason or another. I think just grandpa was home with us. He found the babies out in the snow and brought them into the house. They were tiny little things. Because we were on the farm, we had all kinds of formula powders (I can still remember the smell). He mixed up a bottle and sat with them all night. He had them in the back laundry room, if I recall. He did everything he could to help them, but they didn’t make it. He was heartbroken. I never told anyone that I knew. But I definitely remember it.

Over the years, as we grew, grandpa was about the same. Quite, reserved. Only letting us have small glimpses into his life. Like the fact that he loved Sneakerpimps and was obsessed with the History channel. I used to loath going to their house knowing that History channel would be on. But he was an intelligent man. He knew everything there was to know about anything. He could talk for hours if you gave him the right lead in. Nothing trivial. He wasn’t one for small talk. But talk about the universe, or history, and he could go for hours. He even showed me how to find really small flecks of gold when gold panning. Nothing escaped those eyes of his.

Then the Alzheimer’s. We kinda knew something was off when he was forgetting how to do things he had done for years. It took awhile for them to be able to diagnose him. Grandma tried to tell them, at the time his recall time was something like five seconds, but when they tested they only tried for three. So he was still able to recall and they didn’t see anything was wrong. By the time they diagnosed him, I’m pretty sure he was already advance stages. Shortly after, I was married and whisked away to Florida. I spent my years away from home feeling guilty because I was missing “the good years.” The years when he was still able to somewhat recall who we were.

By the time I came home, he was well past the remembering who I was point. He didn’t even recall dad or grandma. He lived with grandma, saw her every day, but still called her the old lady down the hall. When I first came home, I was terrified of interacting with him. Not knowing what state he was in, imagining that it’s frustrating to lose the ones you love, even when they stand before you. Constantly being surrounded by strangers. I didn’t know how to talk to him, what to say, how to say it. So for about a year I avoided seeing him. Which only added to the guilt I was feeling. He was still grandpa. Even if he didn’t know who I was, I knew who he was. Then something happened that changed it all.

Grandma fell ill. She wasn’t able to stay on top of things like she was before. She called me out to help her. And I went. Scared as I was because I was coming in to help take care of him. The first night had me frazzled. He came out of his room and I couldn’t get him back in. I tried every bribe I could think of and he still wouldn’t go. I didn’t want to touch him to lead him back, because I didn’t know how he’d react to that. I ended up having to call my aunt in to get him back to bed. Which she did. She understood and gave me some tips. The next day is when it all changed for me. My grandma had enough strength to get herself into the shower, so I decided to do the dishes and some cleaning up (even though her house is always clean). I could hear him back there opening his door. So I’d peek around the corner and make sure he wasn’t getting into things (He was always getting into things). Every time he saw me at the end of the hall, he’d shut his door really fast like I had caught him. The last time I heard the door open, I let it go. I met him about halfway down the hall we started chatting. Only with him it wasn’t really chatting because his thoughts were so broken up that anything more than three or four words, got lost. We chatted about the wind, and he demonstrated the wind blowing through my hair. We talked about dancing, because I can’t dance, so he danced with me in the hallway, because he can dance. We talked about the rain. And when I mentioned rain, he wanted to see it. So I brought him to the window and we stood there for a few minutes just looking. I asked if he liked flowers. He said he did. So I told him every time I came to see him, I’d bring him flowers. His eyes lit up at that. It felt good to see him happy. Then grandma opened the bathroom door and he looked like he knew he was in trouble. So I told him “If we don’t move, she won’t see us!” And this is the part that grandma still laughs at. He went stick straight and didn’t move! So there we stood, at the kitchen window, staring at the rain together, not moving. She still caught us and sent him back to his room. But after that, being around him wasn’t so scary anymore.

I did bring him flowers too. The first time, grandma said he kept the flower on his desk for about two weeks before it had to be tossed (I cried when she told me how long he had kept it). The second flower I brought him, he held out for me to smell. When I told him it was lovely, he gave it back to me. Perhaps he thought I would enjoy it more. Either way it touched me. That I thought it was lovely and he wanted me to have it. It became routine that when I was over, I’d go back and talk to him. Once I was only supposed to check in on him. I ended up being back there for about an hour. Grandma had said he was upset before we came, but when I went back, he was nothing but smiles. Laughing it up, having a good ol time. It was also the first time in my life I had ever heard him swear. He was kicked back on his bed, hands behind his head. Just looking comfy as hell. He kept saying “oh shit, oh man, this is good!” I don’t know what had him so happy, but it was good to see him laughing. He told me about the soup guy and how he was going to get in trouble, and how he stirs like “zoot, zoot, zoot” (He was big on using hands and sounds to communicate certain bits of stories.) And all kinds of other things. I just got sucked in listening to him. When I finally came back out, grandma asked where I went off to. I told her I got caught up talking to grandpa. She told me I was enamored. And I was. I was completely captivated by him. I loved listening to his broken speech and trying to see what he was seeing. He never spoke unless he had something to say and now suddenly he had all these things he wanted to tell me. And I wanted to listen. To really listen. Even if it made no sense to anyone.

Shortly after, it became too much work for grandma on her own. We had put off putting him in a home for as long as we possibly could, and now there was no more running from it. Once he was placed, we had to wait the two weeks they asked us to wait. Then we went and saw him. I don’t want to say too much other than I wasn’t impressed. I’m also biased because he’s my grandpa and I know how I would take care of him… this place just wasn’t up to my standard. Or dad’s, or grandma’s. No one else seemed bothered by it. Then things went down hill. In all his time under grandma’s care, he never went to the hospital for anything other than check ups. Suddenly he was in and out several times a week. I remember he had an infection and they told us it went septic. That it might not end well. We dropped everything and rushed to the hospital to see him. Thankfully that time wasn’t the final time. His last few weeks were very tumultuous. Different places, different faces, different tests. A few days before he passed, he had fallen and broken his hip. And I just remember thinking how awful it must be to constantly be surrounded by strangers, constantly in pain with no real way to communicate it. If I could just get to him, to comfort him, if he could just know he was loved. None of it would have done any good, he doesn’t even remember who I am. So he’d have one more stranger added to the mix. The day after they placed the rod, we’d found a good home for him. The lady running it was so ecstatic to have him. The next day, he passed away.

If anything, I just hope he knows he was loved. I would be so happy if we could have at least done that much for him. To make him feel loved, wanted, and happy. Even if we lost him several times throughout the years, nothing prepared us for the final time. I am beyond relieved that his suffering, not knowing, confusion, frustration, that all that is over for him now. That he can finally find peace. I know that his memory will live on. Through stories we tell, through stories we keep to ourselves, through those tiny moments he let us look into his life. All the things we didn’t know, all the things he couldn’t tell us, all the things we could only show him. He will live on.