Half and Half

As we venture towards the end of 2008, I can only sum it up by saying it was half good and half bad. Maybe it's just my perspective but it seems that after Michael died in May, everything went downhill after that.

The first half of 2008 kicked off with me and Michael being engaged and having a great time in Las Vegas with my family for the New Year. Michael was enjoying CW Post and got his first internship. We had half of a wedding planned, things were good. Everyone was happy, things made sense and were clear; the future didn't look so foggy.

In May, Michael left this Earth suddenly and it tore out the heart of many. Following that we learned that the wife of one of my dad's colleagues passed away to cancer. After that, a long-time member of my church in New York passed away. He was such a staple in the church and the everyone had personal emotions tied into his death. My uncle was diagnosed with a tumor near his throat and once that was removed, is now undergoing more treatment. Then this morning, I got news that Michael's grandfather (Sonny's father) passed away. Just in time for Thanskgiving. After the Eckhoff's lost Michael right before Memorial Day and now this. There just aren't any words.

Again, I feel upset because I'm not there for them. I knew Mike's grandfather, maybe not too well, but definitely enough to want to be there for the family. Maybe I just feel guilty because things seems to be going better for me than them. I don't know how to feel, I just feel empty and wondering why God plans things to happen like this. So close together. Within 6 months, 4 people that I've known have passed away.

However, I have to look at the flipside. I have to trust that they are in a better place and even though we all hurt on Earth here, they are doing much better in heaven. Although I'd like to deny that it was Michael's time to leave, I suppose I would not have wanted him to suffer with knowing he had a brain tumor that could kill him. I know that Mrs. Grazal was going through a long battle with cancer - that's never fun. We all know that getting old and having health problems is never a good thing either.

I'm emotional for other reasons, just so much has happened in a short period of time. What do I think? What do I feel? How are the holidays really going to be? I'm famous for thinking too much and I'm doing it again. The myriad of events that have happened in the past year astound me from the happy moments - engagements, weddings, I quit smoking (yes, for those that didn't know and those that weren't sure, I admit, I was a smoker for a few years) and the like to the scary moments - tumors, car accidents, surgeries, to the sad moments - deaths and just ordinary life - Laura has a new car and a house, Chris has a puppy, cousin Dave is moving to Wisconsin, I moved to Louisiana and have a puppy, etc.

So what am I thankful for this Thanksgiving? I thank God for best friends, for family, for His mercy and for helping me to keep on going. Please keep Michael's family in your thoughts. If you want information to send cards or flowers, please email me.

Gobble. Gobble.


Things are Going to Change

Okay, so it's technically still the 20th of November here in the Central Time Zone and I've decided, I'm not going to put up a dreary 6-month post. I'm just not going to do it. Six months seems unreal and at the same time, I look back and I see that I've made it six months and say to myself - why dwell? You're going to make it, you're going to be okay. The first year is always the hardest and while documenting my month-by-month journey with grief has helped me to sort out lots of feelings and come to tons of revelations, I think now I can start being a little more positive.

This is the part that's the hardest. All the memories hurdling toward me at full speed and quickly. Thanksgiving turkeys, Christmas parties and presents, the day Michael proposed to me in Las Vegas, spending New Years in Las Vegas with my family. If I can make it through the next two months, I know I'll be okay. I guess I knew it all along though. In your heart it hurts so much, like you have a hole in your chest with a vacuum sucking everything into it. When you cry, it feels like it's never going to get better, that things couldn't possibly improve and you just wish it had never happened. However, in the end, you dry your tears, take a few shaky but deep breaths, think of a good memory to smile about and keep on moving. Michael and I surprisingly had several end-of-life talks including what we would want the other to do in a situation like this. His answer? Go be happy. He was all about being happy, so that's what I'm doing.

Usually when it comes to this week, I get utterly depressed. Sometimes I don't even realize what day it is and I wonder, why am I feeling so crappy? Then I look at the calendar and say, oh... that's why. For the first time in six months, I had a great night out with a bunch of friends and I truly felt happy and at ease, not worrying about how I was going to feel tomorrow. Let's face it, if I wake up tomorrow in tears, nothing I do now is going to change that.

So a bunch of us went out for Frank's birthday. We started at Sakura's for dinner (I have to say, it does not compare to Ozumos or Minami in New York but still deliciouos) and I was surrounded by great people, some I knew, some who were new to me and plenty of laughs. Afteward we went to Richochet's to play some pool. Many of you know how much I love to play pool, I don't play often but I have such a great time when I do, especially with these guys. I won a game, I lost a few, laughed a lot. It was a great time. Then I came home to a great welcome from my puppy who missed me dearly.

I couldn't ask for things to be going any better given the situation.

Oh, by the way, my cousin Travis is married!!! I didn't have a major meltdown at the wedding at all. Instead I danced my ass off had plenty of drinks and just had fun with my family. Luckily not many people reminded me of how "that could've been you," or gave me pitiful looks all night. The last thing you need is for someone to remind you of what you're doing such a great job of forgetting. Anyway, it was a blast - pictures of the event are on my Facebook page in an album somewhere. Oh, and while I was in New York, I had time to visit the Eckhoff's and visit Michael. His headstone is up and it looks beautiful. Sonny also spruced it up a bit, it looks really nice. I'd post pictures (yes I took pictures) but I'm afraid some of you would just think I'm weird... Oh and I got to see Mikey, Jr. who was surprised to see me and jumped into my arms to give me a huge hug and kiss. Here's a picture of him - this six-year-old is getting so tall! Yeah, he was playing Wii right before I took this picture. Sorry it's blurry, the first picture I took he stood there and stuck his tongue out at me, I thought this one was better.

Okay, that's all for now, I promise...

I lied - here's a picture of Sushi for you. Driving Kristopher's car around. Ha Ha.

A Book Review and More...

So, I have an account with GoodReads.com where you can share what books you are reading, are on your to-read list or have been read with your friends. It also has a rating system and review as well. After you update a book, you have an option to copy it straight into your blog. Also, see my new widget from GoodReads.com on the sidebar which has the books I am currently reading.

Anyhow just thought I'd share.

On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss by Elisabeth K├╝bler-Ross

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
I highly recommend this book to anyone dealing with a loss. I believe that it has helped me immensely to sort through the myriad of emotions that I was dealing with following my fiance's death. Although not all points in the book spoke to me directly, it definitely helped me to understand grief and therefore, better understand myself and what I was going through.

Blogging Addition: I'm not one for books that even remotely look like they could be a self-help book but this one was amazing and not written to sound like the usual self-help book. I think the appeal for me was being able to learn something from it. I didn't just learn about grief but I learned what was "normal" and I learned a few things about myself and how I deal with grief. That has really jetted me forward in the grieving process. When I finished this book in August, not only had I cried some needed tears but I had understood what these feelings inside me were all about.

That doesn't make dealing with loss any easier and yes, it did cause me to think of other people in my life that I had lost besides Michael such as my Uncle Al, Uncle Dom and Grandmother - and see how grief affected me then. I see how they all affected me differently and for differnet reasons although never the same... yet, the same.

Okay, so maybe this post was a little cryptic but it felt good to me.


Month Five & I'm Still Alive

Time is tricky... sometimes it feels as if it has gone by so fast and sometimes it feels like it will never move on; like I'm trapped. Somehow, these two feelings seem to intertwine for me. Time can feel different within the same day at some points. Today, I can't believe that it's been five months since Michael passed away. It doesn't seem like it's possible. It must have only been last month. In the first three months or so after my world changed, I thought, "Wow, you're doing great, you've improved emotionally, set things in focus and come to terms with reality in such a short period of time." Now, things are different. It's been two months, I'm moving on but it seems so slow, like I haven't gone far even though, in actuality, I've gone quite a way. It's not that I want time to go by quicker or that it's easier day by day, it's just that I, being the perfectionist that I am, feel that I'm not hitting my peak, my best at healing.

I know, that's weird, and by most standards, I'm probably doing better than anyone, but in the end, the pain is still there. I've realized that moving to Louisiana was definitely the right decision. I've had more time to reflect and to let my emotions go. I find there are days that I cry because I miss Michael so much when a good memory passes my mind or when special-occasion days near. Yet, I realize it's a cleansing process that I need. Instead of crying out of frustration, confusion and outside emotional battles, I find that when I cry, it's pure grieving. It's because I miss him and the way things were and how they were going to be, but it's me accepting that just one more thing is not going to happen and that it is different now. I cry until I get rid of the feeling and when I'm done, I feel so much better that I know it's okay.

Things are different, many things have become real again as I am starting to filter out what is real and true and from things that have just been reactions. I can't say I'm happy about it, it's tough losing someone you love with all your heart, it's even harder when it brings out other truths that you've just been ignoring in a time of grief... and hoped would've ended differently.

On happier notes, Mikey's 6th birthday just passed. I heard from his mom and from Michael's mom and brother that he had a great birthday with plenty of cool gifts and a trip to the zoo. I called him on his birthday and we talked a little about school and how he's doing. It was so great to hear his voice, of course, after I hung up the phone, it brought tears to my eyes and I cried some more. Many of you know why it hits me at my core...

I have registered my puppy with the AKC today, his certificate should come in soon. Yes, his full name was registered: Sushi the Samurai Monster. He is definitely getting bigger, it's hard to tell from pictures but I looked at one the other day and was surprised. However, his hair is growing quick, so, for all I know, he's all fluff and no meat. He will still go to the bathroom inside if I don't catch the signs and ask him if he wants to "go out" but he does know that he's in trouble since he promptly comes up to me all loving until I find out what he did. Then he runs and hides hoping that I don't get mad at him. On the other hand, he is getting better at sitting for his food. He will sit for it when the bowl is in my hand and wait - soon he will sit and wait until I tell him it's okay to eat; just like Dusty (or that's my plan anyway). He licks my tears when I cry though and that always makes me smile. He always looks for me when I leave the room, if he can see me it's okay but once I leave his line of sight, he will whine wondering when I'll be back. Yes, he's my baby and I love him.

I heard from the Eckhoffs that Michael's headstone will be up at the cemetery on Thursday. They went this past Saturday to review it and I heard that even though it was an emotional day, that it was perfect. I'll be home on Thursday, November 6th and you can bet that the first place I'll be on Friday morning is with Michael. I am actually looking forward to it in an odd way. How can things be so real and yet feel so unreal at the same time?

Oh and, I miss my best friend ever, it's hard being away from her but I know that we'll be okay no matter what we go through. Sometimes, I swear, I can just feel her thinking of me. I'll sit around at home and think, Kelly's at school right now, she's probably rolling her eyes at the students who thought they could get through security with guns and/or knives today. I can't wait to hear her stories. Then on Fridays I'll think about how Kelly is at No Limits bartending and I can see her smile and giggle and it makes me smile. See what you do for me Kel? I don't even have to be on the phone with you!!!!

Good Night.


Birth Verse and a Puppy

So I was overjoyed when I received the Calvary Church Newsletter in the mail today. Call it a coincidence but today I also received a "thank you for worshiping with us" letter from Faith Lutheran Church here in Lafayette today... I think I like them.

Anyway, on the last page of the church newsletter there was this website called Birth Verse where you could go see the verse associated with your birthday. I felt mine was pretty appropriate for the life I live, so I wanted to share it with you all:

Ephesians 5:2 NIV
and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and
gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

You can check out your verse at www.birthverse.com.

On another note, I got a puppy!! It's a male, maltese, he was born on July 24, 2008 so he's about two months old. I haven't named him yet but I know we are going to be good buddies because he's quite attached to me and I to him. He's a little mischievous and has bundles of energy. He loves to run across the linoleum in the kitchen and and then into the office where I have a chair mat down on the carpet. Every time he runs from the kitchen toward the office, he sliiiides on the chair mat, it's very cute and very entertaining.

So why a maltese, because they are supposedly hypo-allergenic. Although, from what I read, there is no true hypo-allergenic dog - it just means they have way less dander than other dogs. So I should be able to tolerate his dead skin flakes better than most dogs and he doesn't shed as much as well. He also keeps my lap fairly warm and is great company so far. I have to look at his traits a little bit more so I can figure out an appropriate name. If you have Facebook, you can check out pictures of him there, but I'll post some here for you too. Feel free to comment with your suggested name!

I'm doing well, thanks for all your thoughts and prayers. I am having a little bit of trouble sleeping at night lately and I had a headache for the past three days, but I think it has been determined that it was just dehydration, drinking lots of water seems to help so it's all good!

Surfing the web with his momma... awwwww


The First Week/Month 4

So today wraps up my first week in Lafayette, LA. I've been really busy unpacking and I have a few boxes left hanging around. Some of them, I think, are just not going to get unpacked because I don't have a place to put things. However, I knew that when I packed them but they are things I wanted to make sure I had with me. Kristopher helped set up my desk area so that I can work which is really nice. I promise to take pictures soon so you can all see what it looks like.

The kitchen is all put away, it was the first spot that felt like home since it was "done" so quickly. Everything else is slowly coming together and it feels good. Lucky for me, I get to work from home which is nice. My job made me an offer so that I could continue working remotely. My plan therefore is to just get another part-time job, perhaps an office job to supplement my income. However, I have a little bit of time before I need to get that done.

Today also marks month number four. I'm not sure if it's a good thing to count the months but I can't shake it. It's as if my body knows when the days are coming anyway because yesterday I just got incredibly sad and frustrated and realized it was because it was close to the 21st again. Can't get away from it even if I don't think about it, I suppose it's in my subconscious.

I did go to church today, I was soooo nervous. I wasn't sure if I would like it, if they would be open or welcoming or if it would just be different. Well, let me tell you, Faith Lutheran Church was a very welcoming place. It's traditional in service but contemporary in other respects. There aren't any pews, but instead, rows of red, extremely comfortable chairs. The church has a small congregation about 60-something people but they were friendly. Although very simple, it still felt like a church. I enjoyed service and the sermon although they sing some parts either differently or just faster than Calvary. I have to look it up in the LW Blue Hymnal, good thing I can sight read music. Although they have Blue Hymnals, everything was printed out in the service bulletin.

I still think about Michael every single day. Sleeping at night has proved to be a challenge while I adjust. Not all nights are difficult, just some. I've put up a bunch of my picture frames. I have pictures of Michael and I and Mikey and I on my desk here and pictures of me with Kelly and Josh and of Annemarie on the bookcase. I still have plenty more pictures to go, they are just in the box, I did find Chris and Tara's prom picture so I put that on the shelf too.

The other day it rained here, not a light rain, not a dark thundering rain, just a heavy rain in the middle of the day. I surprisingly enjoyed watching it from the apartment. The raindrops were huge and all you heard was one huge crack of thunder and then it was like the clouds parted and God slowly tipped a bucket of water down. It came down hard, it came down straight, in a sheet but it was the most beautiful thing ever. It felt cleansing and calming, like all my frustration of unpacking was being washed away. Rain doesn't often make me smile but it did that day.


An Awesome Time with Awesome People

Hey Everyone!! I want to say thank you to everyone who came out on Friday night for my Goodbye Party. I had lots of fun (and drinks) and it was a blast. Our bartender for the night, my best friend ever, Kelly, did a wonderful job. Especially since the bar was packed and she was the only one working that night. Even though I don't see you all on a regular basis it's great to know that you all care enough to come say goodbye and good luck. I really do appreciate it.

So I don't know what I had to drink that night as I lost count... but I'm sure it was somewhere around 3 mixed drinks and 4+ shots. Though, according to Moise, based on the types of drinks/shots I had, he said it was just 1 drink and 1 shot but don't listen to him, he can't even play pool. Just kidding! There was that peppermint shot that was really good, a shot of Amaretto, a shot of Tequila, a shot of Malibu and there was one that another person bought me... hmmm, oh and I'm sure there was a shot of Blackhaus... damn. But hey! I actually held me liquor, Frankie would've been so proud of me.

The pool crowd was playing bar pool and I haven't played since July in Lafayette, so that was really fun. Moise decided he wanted to challenge me and try to win a game before I left the state, but once again, he lost. I think that puts us at Mishy 12, Moise 0. To be fair, I had lost on scratching the cue ball but he never calls it a win. Oh well, more for me. Oh and Kelly had orchestrated this thing for people to bring pictures... she put them into this little photo New York skyline photo album. In it she also included a letter that made me cry the next morning but it was all for good memories and because I am going to miss her so so so much. Of course, she beat me to it as I was going to write one to her... lol. Watch out Kelly, that just means mine will make you cry even more LOL.

At church today they had coffee hour dedicated to me to wish me well and say goodbye. It was really sweet and really touching as I have been attending that church since I was 5 years old. I almost cried at the end but put on my sunglasses before walking out the door.

I have three more days of work left at Cambridge Who's Who and I've been trying to pack though I know I will probably leave most of it until the last minute and then pack in a hurry. Okay, well that might not be true but we shall see what happens. I know... so bad. There is just so much stuff and well, I stop and look/read through it all instead of just packing it so that doesn't seem to help me much.

Anyway, time to get some more of it done so I will talk to you later. Oh yes, for those of you who were thinking of me and remembered Aug. 28... thank you. It was such a difficult day for me and there was so much going on. I wish I could say that it went better but really, I was a bit depressed and quite emotional. Anyhow, thank you for thinking of me that day, it's appreciated.


Come Wish Me Well!

So Kelly has confirmed that the festivities will take place at No Limits on Friday night. The details are below, I hope you can make it and have some drinks with me!

No Limits Sports Bar (Kelly's our bartender!)
247 S Broadway, Hicksville, NY
Friday, September 5, 2008
9pm - whenever we leave

Hope to see you there! I will have my camera on premises so be prepared to take some pictures.

On another note, I just got back from my cruise and can we say RELAXING? I don't think I've been able to sleep that well in MONTHS! I definitely needed that and I feel much better since I've gotten away.

Walks on the beach, hermit crabs, sun tans, strawberry daiquiris, sun, sand, palm trees, towel animals, sunsets, gentle waves, blue skies, sweet dreams, big smiles, laughter, delicious food, gentle rocking, peace and quiet.


Three Months

So yesterday marked the third month since Michael passed away. I went to visit him but just felt somewhat numb staring at the plaque his Uncle Ray had made for his plot until the headstone was ready. The cemetery used to bring a certain type of comfort, it used to help me to cry when I needed to, and, at times, it still does but yesterday I didn't have that feeling. Maybe I'm going through another stage of grief or maybe it was just the general bad mood I was in.

I was mad. Problem is, I didn't have something or someone to be mad at, I just was. So, I tried to just deal with it as best as I could. Talk about it? There wasn't anything to talk about it and I mean that so don't tell that I need to talk... trust me, I talk plenty. I just miss him.

Plain and simple, I miss Michael and not a day goes by that I don't miss him. Some days suck more than others because well, sometimes you just have that need to hear, see or talk to a certain person and when they are not there...

I think I'm going to stop telling people that I miss Michael. For some reason it's a sign that you're "not okay" if you're still missing someone when they have passed away. It's okay when they are alive, but not if they are dead. I don't understand it, aren't I allowed to miss Michael without being viewed as depressed or in a bad emotional state?

I know everyone cares about me, everyone wants to make sure I'm okay and everyone wants to make sure that things will be alright. I hate to break it to some of you, but only time is going to help. It doesn't matter where I am, who I'm with, or what I'm doing but only time and faith is going to get me through this. My closest friends know that I'm smart enough to ask for help if I really need it and thankfully, I think I've always been sensible enough to realize when I'm in a bad spot - damn that gut feeling I tell you!

I'm quickly finding out that grief though is definitely a different process for everyone. No one can truly know how you feel because there are always other factors that shape it, your personality, outsiders, personal issues, etc. The stages may always be the same, the process perhaps the same, the actual grief you feel though will always feel personal for anyone you know who passes away. I'm learning not to just get over it, but to cherish the emotion it brings me. My reactions, feelings and thoughts just speak for what Michael and I had together and what he meant to me.

Otherwise... grief would be easy wouldn't it?

A beach drive is in order for tonight - the wind always feel good in my hair and the water is comforting. I can take more pictures too, maybe there will be a pretty sunset.


Officially Moving out of New York

So here we go, I am officially moving out of New York. The dates are set, the plans have been made and I'm getting ready to go. I'm basically packing lots of boxes (moving companies cost too much) and shipping them off to my friend in Lafayette, Louisiana. I know many of you are shocked (my family) a few of you were hoping I'd change my mind (my friends) and some of you are happy that I'm doing something to make me happy. I hope you all eventually end up in that last category. While I've normally been the one to not make such quick decisions (I assure you lots of thinking went into this), I feel that I need to do what makes me happy and moving, at the moment makes me happy. If it doesn't work out and I come back to New York or end up in another state, so be it. I'm not going to stress about it, life is short, be happy. I'll miss New York but it's time to move on so that I can get on with life the way Michael would want me to.

I'm not really going to give you guys much detail except that I have given my job a 1-month notice as of last Friday the 15th. My last physical day of work is Sept. 10, 2008. My friend, Kristopher, is flying in on Fri., Sept. 12 and we are driving my car down to Lafayette starting when the sun rises on Sat., Sept. 13 and hopefully ending in Lafayette by Sun.

No, I currently do not have a job lined up but I am looking to do plenty of freelance work and I have started my job search in Louisiana. I like how things are nice and laid back down there; people are so friendly! (Kelly says I'm not truly mean enough to be a New Yorker anyway.) Also another plus, is the lack of snow, though I'm trading that in for plenty of rain but I think I prefer rain to snow anyhow.

There were a few factors to moving, the people - of course I'm going where I have more friends and know people, not totally going out on my own here. Also mom and dad will be just 3.5 hours or so away in Las Vegas so weekend vacations to Vegas are probably more likely than from New York. Laura is moving to CT - she's in the middle of finding a place now and Christopher, I believe, you would have to confirm with him, is probably going to stay in PA after graduation. So rather than stay in the big Massapequa house where I was going to live with Michael, I am moving. There are some other, more personal reasons, motivations and stresses for leaving as well but I'll keep those to myself.

I'll be back for some holidays - Christmas, Chinese New Year and Grandpa's Birthday so far...

Kelly and I are planning a night during my last week here as a goodbye get together so I'll keep you all informed of that as well. As always, feel free to come visit, just think of it as another vacation spot (Kelly is already contemplating Mardi Gras LOL). Oh and did I mention all the yummy food?

Once I am settled in, I will update my Facebook profile with my new address (for those of you who are in the "Contact Info OK" friend group) and also send an email.


Just Another Day

Warning - this post is long.

So today was quite filled. I went to church this morning and I couldn't believe how empty it was. It was sort of sad to see the place so sparse when, at one time, when I was younger, it was always filled. However, being there still felt comforting. We didn't have an organist and I have to say we all did quite well singing without one. The pastor that filled in today had a great sermon. It centered around the Bible story of Peter walking on water. For some reason, his sermon and the lesson today just hit me. Certain things would bring tears to my eyes as I related my experience to the story. After being away for two weeks and skipping the week in between, I felt like this just hit home. I had so much strength in the beginning, and I still do, however, I'm starting to get worn out with some other things. Going to church this morning and listening to the story and sermon made me feel so much better. I felt like a little child in Sunday School learning again. It was a reminder for me to trust in God, not to doubt Him (not that I was but I was probably going down that road and didn't even know it yet). I guess it made me think to myself, "Keep having faith, trust Him to take care of you, trust Him to guide you and you'll be able to keep on standing where you think you wouldn't be able to otherwise."

After communion I sat down in the pew to pray as I always do and tears started to come to my eyes. I prayed to God saying, "I don't even know what to say, I don't even know what to ask for anymore except more strength and more peace." Then I continued with the standard parts of my prayer where I asked him to watch over Penny, Sonny, Matthew, Mikey and Fran; continue to bless my family; thank him for Kelly, Frankie and Kristopher; and ask for His guidance and healing. I felt so much better after that. When I left church this morning, yeah I wept a little more but I think it was a good sort of weeping although sad.

After church today I went to visit Mikey and picked up McDonalds for him for lunch. I walked in and he immediately said, "Michelle! I missed you!" He continued telling me how he didn't see me the days before and how he didn't think I was going to come and visit. After talking and catching up with Penny and Sonny for a little bit, I went to watch Mikey play Spider-Man on the Wii. It was a good, sentimental time; I love seeing that boy happy. I was also stressed as I'm trying to figure out how to handle the situation with Michael's car so that it benefits everyone and my credit doesn't get all screwed up. That has been set in motion but I don't know if it's going to go well so we shall see. Probably won't go well at all but I don't know what else to do at this point. When I said goodbye to him he was a little upset, he keeps asking me why I don't stay the nights, I tell him that I have to stay at home because I'm sad but he keeps telling me that I can sleep on the couch instead. I wish I could.

I guess I cleared up a few things on my plate today but even so, I still don't feel much better in the stress department. Too much thinking I guess but that's what I do - my brain never stops working. LOL. Other than that, I'm doing well enough and as best as can be expected. I've been missing the little things about Michael lately like his smile, his laugh, his hugs, seeing him dance and things of that nature. It seems that my memories are *finally* starting to open up so that I can enjoy them so they bring sentimental tears. Sure it hurts, but I wouldn't expect anything less whether I like it or not.

Today I also went to the christening party for Little Louie (my friends Carolyn and Louis' baby boy). He is sooooo adorable and I get such joy out of getting gifts for babies and toddlers. I'm sure by the time this is posted Carolyn might have opened the gifts already so I'm going to say that the little Puma sneakers I got are SOOOOO adorable, I love them myself.

After the party (I left right before cake), I took a drive past the beach down Ocean Parkway, down to Point Lookout and back around to Jones Beach, parked in one of the fields and walked halfway to the water. It was calming and there wasn't any noise in my head. I didn't take this time to think or to clear out the controversies in my head, I just sat there and enjoyed the breeze, the quietness, the sound of the ocean, the smell of the saltwater and the colors - streaks of blue, pink and purple painted the sky - and relaxed. Of course, that ended once I got back into the car and drove back home but at least I had some time of peace.

That was my day and while there are still things tumbling around inside this head of mine (think of one of those like rain sticks where you turn it upside down and all the stuff inside trickles from one end to the other - that's how my brain feels like it's functioning. Except, someone keeps flipping the stick back and forth before the thoughts can get to the other side. I guess today was one of the good days... trying to be optimistic here. Oh yeah, Kelly and Frankie - the best friends a girl like me could ever have. Thank you guys... for everything, I think you do more for me than you could ever know. I love you.


August 8, 2008

Just a few months ago I was planning a wedding, mine and Michael's wedding, to take place one year from this day. It's amazing how things change so fast, so quickly, how life can take you for twists and turns. Good thing I'm holding on tight on this rollercoaster ride. No matter how well in advanced Michael and I had planned - we couldn't have avoided this. You know, life can be short, in retrospect I wish Michael and I had done the quick wedding in Las Vegas :) but at the same time, it's not what we had wanted. We wanted a big family gathering with everyone we knew. We wanted to do it big and we wanted it to be a huge celebration of us and the life we would have together. So while I wish we had gotten the chance to be married, I don't regret setting the date for August 8, 2009 instead.

I love him, he loved me, that's all that really matters - celebrate what we had not what we didn't get to experience. Life is short, do what makes you happy and live. After all, I learned that from Michael. He wasn't a big kid (well he was), he just enjoyed life - every part of it. Always happy, always laughing, always smiling. He did what made him happy and not what pleased everyone else.

That's what I'm going to do. Thanks dear.


Two Months

Today marks the second complete month that Michael has been gone. I am an incredible mix of emotions right now. I've been moving quite happily down the recovery ramp and there are just some days when it seems like someone left you a box to trip over at the end of the ramp and you go flying but you're not quite sure where you are going to land. In those cases, staying in flight seems like the best scenario.

My ring has been moved over to my other hand. I don't like the odd looks I get from people when I hang out with my guy friends and they wonder which one of them I'm engaged to. Also applies to the strangers in the bar that ask when I'm getting married and all that jazz. Much easier to move it because quite frankly, a stranger does not need to know anyway. No use sharing that story with them.

I went to visit Michael today and was instantly filled with tears. I'm not sure why, like I said, I was moving kind of smoothly down the recovery ramp with just a few bumps in the road but for some reason today, it's like I went into a wall and got smushed. However, fear not friends and family, I'm okay it was just "one of those days." I've been somewhat confused lately on who's feelings I need to consider in certain decisions that I'm being faced with. I automatically want to say, my feelings count the most - weighted 50%. Yet, if you know me, you know that I do not work that way even though I know it may be in my best interest.

I don't want to be in New York any longer. I want to move and I want to move soon and I know there are a few people who may not be happy with my decision or my plans. It's hard to think about and, like I said, I don't want to upset anyone. But, it will make me 20 times happier than I am now and no, that is not an exaggeration.

For those of you that I have just worried and are now fearing that I am in a depressive downward spiral and never leaving the house again... do not worry. I have dinner plans on Tuesday and Thursday. I am being sociable all weekend and I even have plans NEXT Thursday already. I've also planned plenty of vacations so I have time to get away and think. time to relax, time to be me and time to sleep. I don't sleep well here but I've slept amazing while I've been away so that's a plus.