Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Mommy Survey

I never do these surveys but I thought this one was cute!

1) Was your first pregnancy planned? Not exactly. She wasn't planned but we also weren't using any birth control. We weren't trying but we also weren't trying to prevent it. Still, she was a surprise to us. The best surprise EVER!! :)

2) Were you married at the time? No, but might as well have been. We were married every way but legally.

3) What were your reactions? I was terrified!!! Not because I didn't want her, but because I did. Henry was very very happy and excited- I was too once some of the terror faded!!

4) Was abortion an option for you? ABSOLUTELY NOT! NEVER!!

5) How old were you? I was 21, Henry was 26

6) How did you find out you were pregnant? I wasn't even a day late, but Henry had kept telling me I was pregnant. I had a pregnancy test leftover from a few months before and I took it just because. That second line showed up INSTANTLY! My cousin Jennifer was with me in the bathroom and she was just as shocked as I was!

7) Who did you tell first? Jennifer was with me so she knew first and then I called Henry even though it was the middle of the night!

8) Did you want to find out the sex? Yes!! And we did, at 17 weeks. :)

9) Due Date? 4 April 2009

10) Did you have morning sickness? Oh yes. I had HORRIBLE morning sickness, and not just in the morning but all day every day for my whole pregnancy! Thankfully I have an amazing husband- he was so great. He cleaned up vomit, got me ice chips and ginger ale and cold rags. I love him!

11) What did you crave? Chinese food (Seasame Chicken and Lo Mein), McDonald's chicken nuggets, Chicken salad and grilled chicken sandwiches from Chick-Fil-A. And Coca-Cola!!! Henry was always going out in the middle of the night to get McDonald's for me!!

12) Who/What irritated you the most? Not having enough of a belly to tell I was pregnant until 6 months along!!

13) What was your first child's sex? A BEAUTIFUL PERFECT GIRL!!

14) Did you wish you had the opposite sex of what you were getting? NO, Never!!

15) How many pounds did you gain throughout your pregnancy? 43. Our doctor wanted me to gain extra weight because I'm so tiny. She told us I needed to gain between 35-45lbs and I thought it would be impossible!!

16) Did you have a baby shower? Yes, it was wonderful!! :)

17) Was it a surprise or did you know? We knew!

18) Did you have any complications during your pregnancy? No complications, but I was considered pretty high risk because of the medicine I take and a few other reasons. For that reason they did innumerable ultrasounds (which we loved!!) and Non-Stress Testing, and we were monitored very frequently!

19) Where did you give birth? Medical College of Georgia (MCG) in Augusta, GA.

20) How many hours were you in labor? Well, contractions woke me up about 0700 that morning and she came into this world at 1641, so almost 10 hours, but it was VERY EASY labor. Now if you want to count just pushing as labor, then about 15 minutes. Four pushes and she was out!!

21) Who drove you to the hospital? My wonderful husband, Henry. Traffic was horrible because it was Master's Week and Henry did his best to get us there quickly and he did a good job of it! Then we couldn't find L&D because they were doing construction in the hospital and there were no signs (we had never been to that hospital before). We ended up on some floor where Henry commandered a wheelchair and made me ride! As soon as we found L&D the nurses took one look at me and said "Wow, we need to get you to a room and hooked up quick!"

22) Who watched you give birth? Henry!! And NUMEROUS doctors, nurses, and a special newborn team! The room was crowded!

23) Was it vaginal or a C-Section? Vaginal, thankfully!

24) Did you take medicine to ease the pain? ABSOLUTELY! Epidurals are AMAZING!! I didn't feel a thing, and I mean literally. No pain, no pressure, nothing!

25) How much did your child weigh? 6lbs 14oz 19 inches long!

26) When was your child actually born? Exactly a week after my due date. Saturday, 11 April 2009

27) What did you name him/her? Cadence Marie Bodie! We had her name picked out long before we were pregnant! <3

28) How old is your first born today? 2 years, 3 months, and 2 days!

Early Days With Henry

The past few days I've been thinking a lot about my first few months with Henry. I wish I could convey the feelings of those days. I needed so badly to get away and he offered me a place to stay for a weekend. Because of the drugs, there's a lot I don't remember, but he tells me that when the weekend was up he asked me to stay. I do remember telling him that if I was staying we had to drive the two hours to Athens so I could get more clothes. I do remember that I didn't tell him until we were almost there that he was going to meet my parents. After a few weeks I had more clothes in his barracks room than he did. During the day, while he was at work, I would hang out in his room and watch DVD's because he didn't have cable. I would spend time on the internet. I would sit outside and smoke and read. On his lunch break he would come check on me, bring me food, and make sure I ate, because I wasn't eating much in those days. He knew I was taking the pain pills, and he understood why. He made sure I didn't stop breathing. And he was the one that talked me into rehab. Less than a month after we met he was sent to WLC at Ft. Benning. At the time I remember thinking that I had known him for so long, but looking back it was only a few weeks. I was heartbroken. He told me I could stay in his room while he was gone, but I didn't want to be alone so I went back home. I went to Columbus and we lived in hotels for a little while during WLC, and I remember loving it. When he wasn't at WLC we watched movies, ate out, talked. He even dyed my hair pink for me. Then he had to go to the field for a week and I went back home. While he was in the field he wrote me love letters, one for every day we were apart. I still have them and I cherish them. When he came home I moved back into his barracks room with him. One night I took too many pills and had a seizure, the last of many. I remember telling him I felt 'seizurish' and he held me. The next thing I knew I was waking up in his arms, my head in his lap, on the floor, a pulse ox monitor on my finger, and him telling me my heart rate was much too high, that I had had a seizure and that he was going to carry me across the street to the ER. If he hadn't been there I'm not sure what would have happened. I know I scared him, I know he was terrified. He took care of me. And thankfully that was the last seizure I ever had. Because of the drugs there is a lot I don't remember about that time. I do remember him making me smile. I remember laying in his arms and watching Grey's Anatomy. I remember feeling safe and cared for. I remember him staying up all night with me a lot of nights, even though he had to work the next day. He must have been exhausted. I remember every day looking forward to his lunch breaks. When it got close to time for him to get off work I would go sit outside on the stairs and wait for him. Summer turned to fall and fall turned to winter. There was a room inspection in the middle of the night one night and they found me in his room and told us that I had to go. They also found my drugs, in an unlabeled bottle, but by some miracle neither of us got in trouble. Not long after that he talked me into going to rehab. A few days before I left for rehab we officially became a couple. He went to Build-A-Bear and made me a stuffed puppy, with a voice recording of him saying 'I love you sweetness' for me to take to rehab with me. That was February 13. I checked into rehab a few days later and I missed him like crazy. He came with my Dad to visit me and I cried and begged him to get me out, and I will never forget the look on his face when he had to leave me there. After rehab we saw each other a lot. He came to my parents house every weekend to see me and eventually I moved back into his barracks room with him. Every day I fell more in love with him, and it's still that way. There's so much more to tell about our early days together but I will save that for another time.

Henry, my one, my soulmate, I love you with absolutely everything I am, always.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Night Shift

So Henry starts night shift on Monday. And I have to be honest, I am not happy about it and I am more than a little scared. Yes, it could be much much worse, and I am so grateful that he will still be here and not away from us. But I do hate that we won't get to see him much. I hate that even on his days off we won't see much of him because while we're awake he will be asleep. I hate that Cadence won't see much of him. I hate it for him. I hate that we're going to be alone at night. For those of you that know me you know that I don't do well alone, and I especially don't do well alone at night. And after what happened the other day with those horribly severe panic attacks, I am even more scared. In the grand scheme of things I know this isn't bad, I know it isn't a big deal. But I am scared of being alone at night. To me that's a huge thing. Besides staff duty, I havent been alone at night since right after Shawn died. It was horrible then and it's still horrible. For me it is bad. I cannot sleep when I am alone. I cannot sleep without him next to me. For nearly four years Henry has been there to wake me from the nightmares and keep me safe. And now I will be alone in our bed, and it will not be easy for me. And he could be on night shift until we PCS, and that could be three years. I assume I will get used to it. I really have no choice. My only other option is to switch my schedule and Cadence's, and stay up all night and sleep all day, but I don't really think that's fair to her. We both need to see sunshine. So, the only thing I can really do is suck it up. Yes, I am aware that this sounds like a lot of bitching and whining. I am aware that it could be worse- believe me, I know all too well. But you are not me and you do not understand my fears. You do not have my nightmares. You do not know what terror the night can bring. So, please, do not tell me I'm overreacting. It may seem that way to you, but if you were in my shoes you would understand. Yes, I am extremely lucky that he is here and not deployed, and I am grateful for that every minute. Yes, I am very aware that it could be worse, so I don't need you to tell me that. This is me, this is our life, my life, these are my fears, and it is not for you to judge what 'should' or 'shouldn't' be a big deal.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


Panic attacks are horrible. They started when Shawn deployed, happened every so often during that nine months, got much worse after he died, went away completely while I was pregnant with Cadence, came back with a vengeance when Henry was in Korea, for the most part went away when he came home, and starting last month, reached a horrible crescendo. I do not want this, this panic disorder. I did not ask for it, and I do not want it. Have you ever had a panic attack? I feel like I'm dying. My chest hurts and is so tight that I can't breathe. It's scary, especially when I'm alone with Cadence. I am so sure I am dying. And even though I know exactly what it is, even though I know it's a panic attack and that it will pass after I take my medicine, it's nearly impossible for me to believe that I'm not dying during one. The one today was so horrible I almost called an ambulance. I was terrified, not only for me, but for Cadence as well. I could not breathe, I could not think about anything except that I was about to die in front of my child. And the more I thought that, the worse it got, of course. I have been trying not to take my medicine, because I hate it and thought I was done with it for good. But after 20 minutes of being sure I was dying I took some. I just want this to go away. Or if not then I wish there was a medicine for anxiety attacks that isn't a benzodiazepine or a sedative. I hate this. Haven't I been through enough? And yet I have to deal with this too? And it isn't fair to Cadence that Mommy freaks out and thinks she's dying. She deserves better than that. I want her to have better than that. Why can't they just stop, go away, and leave me alone? That shouldn't be so much to ask. I don't want Cadence growing up watching Mommy like that. It scares her. I'm not sure what else to do except take the stupid medicine when I need to, and I hate that too. But, I guess, it's the lesser of two evils.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Here I Am

I made it through June of my fourth year, though not without immense help from Henry and Cadence. And I am happy. Happy and in love. Two things I never thought I would be again. I look forward to getting up each day, and I look forward to going to sleep every night in Henry's arms. My times of sadness are fewer and farther between. And I thank God and Shawn every day for this life and this love they have given me.

Henry is absolutely amazing, and without him I would be nothing. Hell, without him, I wouldn't even be alive, much less here. I am so very much in love with him. So much so that there are not words to describe this love. And I am blessed enough to have him deeply in love with me too. Every time he tells me he's in love with me, my heart feels like it's going to explode with happiness. I still get butterflies when he holds my hand, my heart still skips a beat when he looks at me, I still get excited when he's on his way home from work, because I know that I will see him soon. Every day with him is love and joy and happiness. That isn't to say we havent had bad times, because we most certainly have. Loving a widow with all of her accompanying baggage isn't easy. I have not been easy, and at times I have not been easy on him. But, we are only more thankful and happy and in love because of the hard times, not in spite of. Every day I am immensely grateful for his love and kindness. Do I still have bad days? Of course I do. But he is always there to pick up the pieces and put me back together again. What an amazing man to love and cherish a widow with all of her hurt and fears. I am not empty anymore, and I thank him and Cadence for that too. Henry has given me a life that I never could have even hoped for. A life, an amazing life, a beautiful, healthy daughter, laughter, love, joy, hope. For all I have lost, I am here, I am strong, I am happy. I am alive, and I am grateful.

but inside I'm screaming...

June 21, 2011

who would have thought that two words could tear your whole world apart and bring you to your knees? Two words, two little words. He's gone. And I did not scream, I did not quit breathing, I did not swallow a bottle of pills. But can't you hear it? Inside I'm screaming. Inside I can't breathe. Can't you hear me screaming? Can't you see it in my eyes?

I was told that because I was not hysterical I must not have loved him. I ask you again, can you not hear it? Inside I am screaming. Inside I have been screaming for four years and 18 days. Why can't you hear it? Why can't you look in my eyes and see it? Let's jump back four years, eighteen days. My world has just ended. I am in unimaginable pain. I am terrified. I do not say a word, but inside I am screaming. I do not say a word, but I want to die. I do not say a word, but I am empty. Can you hear me now? Inside I'm screaming. Two words can tear you in two, empty you out, make you want to die. There is only pain and emptiness, and the barren landscape of your own soul. There is only darkness and hope is out of reach. You don't know how to breathe, but you do. You don't know how to walk, so you crawl. You are terrified to sleep because of the nightmares, and even more terrified to be awake. Inside it is loud, so loud. But the quiet would be worse. You sleep with the TV on because in the raging quiet the memories are too much. Everything, absolutely everything is a reminder of what you have lost, what has been taken from you. Every breath hurts because your heart has been ripped out. You don't want to go on, but you have to, somehow. You need to get away, so you run. You run and you run and you run. You try to numb your pain. There is no light, no hope. Life does not get any more desolate than what you see inside yourself. And inside I am screaming.


June 20, 2011

Some days I just want to be normal for a bit. I never wanted the word, the tag, the stigma, of widow applied to me. I never wanted any of this. I NEVER WANTED THIS! I DID NOT ASK FOR THIS. I didn't ask for it. I didn't deserve it. I just wanted him to come home. And some days I am still angry. I didn't want this, dammit, I did not want it. No one ever wants this. I am still so angry. Angry at the world, angry at God. He was supposed to come home. I just wanted him to come home. I left a light on, every single night. I did everything I could. I loved him with all of me. And it wasn't enough. It wasn't enough to bring him home. I am still bitter sometimes. Why him? Why me? Why any of us? I miss him. I love him. And I didn't want this. Oh, God, I did not want this. I wanted one thing. Only one thing, for him to come home alive. And I didn't get the only thing I wanted.

I can still see him. But his smile is fading. I can't smell him anymore, can't feel his touch. I can no longer picture the exact color of his eyes. I am slowly losing the only thing I have left of him.

He is gone. And I am here. This is my reality.