Wednesday, October 10, 2007

New Shoes

James has been needing some new shoes (for longer-er since July-than I care to think about) so I was finally able to find the time (i.e. get up off the couch, off the computer, away from my thoughts) to take him up to the local sporting goods store. I have to tell you that Dunham's, if you have them by you, is by far and away the best place on earth to buy tennis shoes for your kids...without breaking the bank. Leonard had this "thing" about putting the kids in high quality shoes, whereas I was more of the "but Payless is doing BOGO this week" kind of mother. My husband was far better at the do what's best for the kids way of thinking. Anyway, again with the being off topic, we went right after he came in the door from school. If I don't do something in that 5 minutes there is a 90% chance that we won't be going anywhere. (85% of statistics are made up on the spot by people who just want to be right) He really likes the New Balance shoes. He being James. They are regularly $49.95 but I got them or $25.99. With tax, they were $98.00. Okay, with tax and the impulse shop of 6 new pairs of socks, a Lions jersey (because he never had one and it is heartbreaking to see him wallowing in his Daddy's really big one) and a pair of Lions PJ bottoms. Luckily I got out of there before I found myself buying anything else. Retail therapy can be a real and scary thing I am finding out and I really don't want to be that way. We are home now and he is busy screaming with his friends on the trampoline.

Thank you so much for your words of encouragement about my last post. Because I have verification (in the form of the registered mail receipt) I should be okay. My issue with the Ms. is because I asked nicely, once, to be addressed by my real title, Mrs. I am still his wife. I am angry with myself for devoting so much time to anger at one person. I have always been that way. I am the woman who will call out the cashier for being rude to the person in front of me in line or the person in front of me in line for being rude to the cashier. It used to drive my husband nuts.

I did also buy myself two tops but only because I had a 25% off coupon at JC Penney's and it would be a shame to let it go to waste. Although it brought up a memory and made me feel a little guilty. I am ashamed to admit that I had gotten to be rather a "frump" during our marriage and liked to blame it on motherhood. I am just, in all honesty, more comfortable slumping around in pajamas rather than clothing all day. Ask my daughter about the time I forgot that I had to go in and sign her out for her school dance, took a shower (because I thought no one would see me in my pajamas in the car), realized that I had to go sign her out when I saw the other parents walking in...and ended up embarrassing her in front of "All my friends, Mom, thanks..."*insert eye rollie* At least the Scottie dog top matched the bottoms and there were no (discernible holes)...

---Off topic but does the sound of children screaming while jumping on trampolines drive you as batty as it does me?

I remember a time, right after James was born, that we went to Somerset Mall with my visiting brother and sister in law. I had, stupidly, read in a parenting magazine how a postpartum mom can cheer herself by wearing at least matching sweats with maybe a kicky bow in her hair. So I did. Off I went (in blueberry blue sweats) to a mall that most people go to dressed really trendy (it is a high end mall). My sister in law is one of those people who can dress up, add a hat and look like a cover girl. She has really good taste in clothing and it shows. We were walking through the mall....well I was shuffling more like...behind my sister in law and Leonard turned to me and said, "You are such a frump..." in an affectionate, teasy manner. I was thinking of that today and hurting a little bit. Hurting because it would not have taken much to put on a pair of pants (other than the sweat variety) with a nice top to welcome him home...instead of the holey shirts/shorts/jammy bottom combos. File this under the things I could have done to make him happy because that is what I lived for file. I wish for so many unobtainable things...which then creates the hurt that never goes away.

Where I once could look at photographs of him, I am finding (this week) that is really difficult for me to stare into that face that I know is gone from me. I was watching the DVD that was made for him every morning when the kids left for I find that I cannot bear it. This grieving is so very strange. One moment, I can speak of him with clarity. Another moment, just the mention of his name dissolves me for the day. It is plain. It is simple. I want/need him.

There are so many things yet to be done...and so much of me that wasn't want to do them. These little acknowledgements of his loss.

Did anyone watch Tyra Banks today? With Melissa Etheridge? For once, I cried for other reasons. It is a powerful interview and I encourage anyone who didn't see it (and has the Oxygen channel) to watch it tomorrow night. I wish I could be strong like that. And has anyone else gotten addicted to this: It is a continuous stream of images that are being posted on blogger's blogs. It is fascinating and, I will admit, some of the images have brought me to tears, while still others compel me to think WTF?


Shannon said...

I haven't commented much lately but I want you to know I'm reading every post and thinking about you at random I sound like a stalker and I'm totally not.

That photo blogger thing, too cool.

Laurie said...

Hi Laura,
It was good to hear you got out for a little "make James smile big time" today. He scored big time and I am sure he appreciated it all. You did good and I am with you on comfy clothes vs. "Laura Ashley". Treating yourself was a good thing too and don't feel bad about the timing, you treated yourself and this is good too. I think Leonard would have loved you in a burlap sack! I will be praying for you as you get all of the many things done that still need to be dealt with. I hurt for you in this task. Be gentle with yourself as you grieve during this time. You are worth it and you will thank yourself later.
Love you Laura, and you are getting through this hardest time, with grace and the Lords help. Have a good and restful nights sleep tonight.
Joy and Blessings to you,
Laurie in Ca.

Jess said...

I can also be an emotional shopper, so I totally understand the extra buys you made today. How sad is it that I have no idea what sport the Lions are a team for!

I too have gotten so much frumpier since I've had Ella. I sort of figure that she is really the only person who "sees" me all day and she just doesn't really care. We went to a petting farmstead/pumpkin patch yesterday and there was a woman on the wagon ride with her toddler who was wearing this really impressively coordianted ensemble- in style ballet flats, perfectly fitting jeans, boat neck black top and the kicker was the black ribbon belt with the orange accent stitching that was tied in a very jaunty bow at her hip. Oh, and she was perfectly accessorized and had full make up and blown dry hair too. At first I felt really frumpy looking at her and then I sort of felt smug that I have been able to let go and just be comfortable and then I started wondering how much time it took her to actually get ready - for the pumpkin patch of all places! My point is that I think it is OK that we are frumpy since we are spending that getting ready time with our kids. I do try to pull it together somewhat though b/c my current look and my past efforts are so completely different and I don't want Bob to think I am completely unattractive. Anyway, my point in writing all this is that you aren't alone- most moms in the USA are happiest in sweats and are just glad if we've gotten a shower in that morning. :-)

Marsha said...

I have never heard of Blogger Play, now I have a new hobby. We were stationed in Japan for four years, we just got back to the US last March. There just happened to be a lot of pictures from Japan when I was watching. Makes me miss it a bit, even though this is my home and I am glad to be back, I still miss Japan a bit. Well Mississippi, I had never been here before, but the US in general is my home.

Haylee said...

Hi Laura:

Sounds like you & James had an interesting shopping spree. I laughed when you said $25.99 + taxes = $98. That's my kind of math:) My kind of shopping too!

It is infuriating that the office person is being such an inconsiderate jerk - to put it bluntly. She stikes me as the type who, when she does something inappropriate, gets haughty at the victim instead of apologizing or, at the very least, changing her ways. She no doubt has a real bee in her bonnet now so, if at all possible, avoid her. Her type has the capacity to irk plus it may be some sort of power trip for her -- "big fish little pond syndrome. Again, consider the source.

Laura, in the grand scheme of life, I rather doubt that you wearing a blouse instead of a sweatshirt *really* mattered. In times of sorrow, we all tend to want to go back & revise history & we beat ourselves up over some rather silly things -- not to call your feelings silly but you deserve to cut yourself some slack. Try to cauterize &/or compartmentalize the "wudda, cudda, shudda" stuff. To me, and I know others will agree, you had ALL the bases covered regarding the *really important* things in your marriage to Leonard. Not to minimize your distress, but most people would glady trade their list of regrets for yours -- truly -- your love & devotion for Leonard is clearly woven throughout your blog -- I got the sense that you never lost that specialness of new love. What a blessing!

I didn't see that Tyra Banks show nor do I know what you're referencing. What I do know is that you greatly under-rate your strength. Throughout the past several weeks, you have shown great courage - you may not feel it, but just doing what you're doing is doing it! How's that for redundancy? LOL

Naturally you fear for your future but, by handling it one day at a time, you are facing the future at your own pace. That's what really counts.

I hope I didn't come off as being cold-hearted regarding your daughter. Please know it is/was not my intention. Each of us come to many crossroads throughout our lives and she must be gently (or not-so-gently) guided (or prodded) to do what is right and make the conscious decision that this is NOT all about her -- your whole family has had the rug pulled out from under them and you all need help to rebalance. Unity always.

Praying for peace to fill your heart & soul.

(PS - sorry for the ramble)

Jess T said...

Just checking in on you. :)


Shari said...

Shopping? Don't get me started. It's soooo easy to spend too much, unfortunately. :) That's great that you got out there and even bought yourself something. I like to dress comfortably. Sweats, workout gear, and jeans. That's me. I hate to dress up. I don't know why.

Noisy kids can get on your nerves sometimes. But I would rather hear "noise" than nothing at all. :)

I don't know what happened to my comment on the previous post. Sometimes when I post a comment, it just doesn't work. Weird.

I think you are doing fine. While I only lost close relatives, your experience is something that I can advise you on except that getting out of bed, taking care of *you*, and your family is numero uno. You really have come a long way. Every week that goes by, I see you getting stronger, more like yourself. He'll always have a space in your heart and in your memories.

I read somewhere that "if a loved one hadn't been such important and good person in our lives we wouldn't feel the hurt, that our pain is a measure of his or her worth". And the way you pour your heart out in writing, I feel his worth.

Tessie said...

I liked this entry. You are still so funny, even when describing stuff that is painful for you.

And I am a TOTAL frump so don't worry too much about it :-)

The Stevens Family said...

I just found your blog. I am so sorry for you and your family. I write on my blog about my kids all the time, but say very little about my husband. I thing today I will write about him. Thank you for showing me that importance through your loss. Again, I am very sorry.

Shelly said...

Still thinking about you, babe. Glad the shopping trip went well - loved your description. Remembering Leonard will get easier, it's probably just a matter of time - not being dismissive, I know that "time" can mean *years*.

rachd said...

Okay, I typed up a super long, supportive comment at work today and it seems the computer ate it!! Grrrrr!

The gist of it was retail therapy is fun but deadly so you have to be careful.

I also wrote about not being able to look at pictures of Hannah--it hurts too much. I did in the beginning, but now it is just painful.

Finally, I was absolving you of any guilt associated with being "frumpy". Leonard loved you for who you were, not for who you could have been.

I'm thinking of you always!