What is this?

What is this? I don't really know, other then a continuation of my updates and writings that I was sharing previously on Caringbridge of this journey through cancer and now widowhood and single parenting.

Maybe it won't end up being anything at all, or maybe it will be a glimpse into my heart, my life, my current situation, my testimony.

Whatever it becomes, I am touched that you are interested.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Messy Truth

This is the messy truth. This post will be unedited. I won't save it, pray over it and reread it 50 times before posting. I'm not going to try to find the optimistic view or white knuckle the thread of hope I have been clinging to. The only thing I'm going to do, is what God has put on my heart to do today, and that is to be transparent.

I'm actually following suit after reading a similar, what's the word....confession... from someone who has found herself at the end of herself, trying to remain who she was in circumstances out of her control.  

Those close to me have seen some of this mess, but even that is usually sandwiched between the 'coping by distraction' me and the 'pick yourself up by the bootstraps' me.  These alter egos are real and authentic. They have been the only way I've made it this far. But as I'm finding, they only go so far because grief is constantly evolving. 

I felt God tell me that I have to let myself accept the other me. The 'falling apart and it's ok' me. And that I may need to expose it.

I have been clinging to something that God put in my heart a few months ago.  That He made me for this. This. Young, grieving, single mother, widowhood with chronic illness. And not only did He make me to survive this, but to thrive in it.

My independent, go-getter, problem solving, systematic, community seeking, love of leadership and authentic nature all will be used for God's glory through this tribulation. But really, how well can it be used if I don't also share the depth of the darkness and the extent of the mess I sit in?

Want to see?

This is my life. A complete and utter mess.  Half the bed piled with clothes, Christmas ornaments, a fan and God knows what else. My luggage from Christmas hasn't moved since I finally unpacked two weeks ago. Yup - took me until the beginning of February to unpack.  Part of my closet collapsed a couple months ago.  Oh well. I am living like a bachelor pulling wrinkled but clean clothes out of the laundry basket on the floor.  My attempt to set up my work at home office has hit a standstill and I tiptoe around the organized chaos of piles to file, to shred, to recycle, to put away, etc. then close the door on it. Those who know me know that my environment drastically effects my well being, and I have never in the last 9 years lived like this.  (Don't worry, the baby and the spaces she inhabits are safe. She is my priority.)

My body is falling apart. Constant headaches, lupus flare, a month long steroid treatment, nightmares, night sweats, painful bruises all over, nausea. The recent stress has drastically effected my milk supply and I think I'm coming to the end of my abilities to nurse.

I'm at the far extents of survival mode. If something is not bringing 100% positivity to my life, it's out for now because I can not carry one more ounce on my shoulders. I haven't watched the news in over 6 months, it's just too negative. In the rare times I can watch a little TV, it's either Ugly Betty or cooking shows, because even HGTV brings too much stress with couples buying their first home, or renovating before the new baby arrives.

These are the parts of my life I have been keeping the doors closed on when people are around. 

When you look at what I will allow you to see it looks how I so desperately want it to look like myself. A bit disorganized and not like it used to be, but overall ok-ish:

But I'm not ok. I can't keep my head above the water lately. Wave after wave of crap keeps hitting me. The life I had is completely gone. Gone. Everything in my world is different. Everything in my day to day life is different. I had no choice in any of this. I feel like I'm navigating this alone because there is no one who can take the place of your soul mate. 

I just want a break. I wish I could just get away from it all. A chance to collect myself and regain strength. Just press pause. Better yet, how about fast forward? To the other side of this

I have so many people who want to help. New friends and old. But I don't even know what to ask for at this point. It doesn't feel like anything can help this. 

Who can help me coparent? Who can grab the baby in the middle of the night to give me a break? Who can 'keep an eye on her' while I wait for the headache to go away, or grab me some ibuprophen when I can barely move in the morning? Who can take away this feeling like half of me is gone? 

I have found tangible ways to receive help, and seriously I have the best community of people who have gone above and beyond. Meals, cleaning, companionship, last minute child care, funding for child care, cards, care packages, messages, anticipating difficult days...I seriously could go on and on. Without you all, I really can not even imagine how utterly disastrous my life would be right now. And as you read this you probably feel helpless. You are doing everything you can, but there really is nothing anyone can do to mend a broken heart. That's God's job. 

I am going to therapy and multiple grief groups weekly. I am praying and seeking God's word. I beg for His peace that surpasses understanding that has gotten me through the past 7 months. And at times I feel it.  But not today. Not for the past couple of weeks.  But still, I trust that God is allowing this. There is something I need to see or experience or learn or grow from through this part. It all has passed through His all knowing and loving hands.  But it doesn't mean I have to like it.  

I know I'll get through this. I don't give up. I want to, that's for sure. But I can't. I have a beautiful daughter that needs me. Most days she is the only thing that makes me plow forward. That she needs me to put my big girl pants on, buck up and be strong for her.  So I do the best I can...


  1. Christina I'm pretty sure God wants you to let go of all those things.
    He's making a new you! All the things that used to make you who you are are not needed. The new you will have so much peace nothing will frustrate you again!
    Things the devil throws at you won't matter because you already know it's God's job and he will get you through it because he has gotten you through everything else!
    What can the devil really throw at you now that you can not overcome through Christ Jesus?
    For me and my own trials and losses I have been through this last few years I say Devil you may have taken those things but your not taking me to. Not my spirit not my faith not my relationship with God. Only if he takes that he has won. X

  2. Thank you, that is very thoughtful and inspiring. God bless you

  3. Hi Christina. It's Barb, your transparency is refreshing. You have a lovely home, Arias room is precious! You are overwhelmed, I would love to come over and help you. I am available this weekend or next weekend. I'm great at organizing, cleaning and laundry. I remember after having Peyton how overwhelmed I felt with my home. A wonderful person showed up one day and cleaned my house, did laundry and put it away. I would be thrilled if I could pay it forward and do the same for you. Please feel free to call me anytime 7203831803 my email is interiordesignerbarb@gmail.com

  4. I love your honesty. Don't hide your true feelings. It is okay. I may not have experienced a death but i have experienced other grief/trauma and so can understand not wanting to do anything and not being able to get organized in my life and not wanting to get out of bed. If you dont want to "use" your friends, neighbors, community and want someone new, call/text me at 720-474-9630 or email me at darcydallin@msn.com.


  6. Your post reminds me of a book I just finished reading by Jerry Sittser called A GRACE DISGUISED - How the Soul Grows Through Loss. Jerry lost his mother, his wife of 20 years and a daughter in a horrible car accident that left him and two of his children badly bruised and a son in traction/body cast. He writes, "Sooner or later all people suffer loss, in little doses or in big ones, suddenly over time, privatelyy or in public settings. Loss is as much a part of normal life as birth, for as surely as we are born into this world we suffer loss before we leave it. This book shows how it is possible to live in and be enlarged by loss, even as we continue to experience it." I read the expanded edition which was updated 20 years after the accident where he is able to reflect back on the years. I found it so encouraging I've bought the sequel to the book called A GRACE REVEALED which continues the story. I know that you probably don't feel like reading a book right now, but I just wanted to let you know about it. Praying for you and your loved ones! Sincerely, Faith Conn Kemper Faithckemper@aol.com


Thank you for sharing your thoughts!