It's been a while since I've written. The summer has come and nearly gone in a blur, much like all the seasons in my life here lately. What is that old saying... time doesn't stop for me. Or is it wait for me? Either way, it's true. Everything keeps going, and it seems like it speeds up when you want it to slow down.
We had a great trip to the beach. We went to the Ft. Walton area this year, and the beaches were absolutely gorgeous. The water was crystal clear, and I do believe the sand was even more like powder there than it is in Orange Beach. David is actually gone now with his friend. Gone for an entire week. It has been a little weird letting him go, both literally and figuratively. He's getting so much older and more independent. In a couple of years, he will be driving out of the driveway by himself. It just seems so strange.
I'm taking advantage of him being gone by painting his room. It's LONG overdue. I think he was seven when I painted his room last, so you can imagine the condition of his walls. Yesterday, I took my wall spackle and filled in nail holes and gouges all over the room. I even found a metal BB lodged in the wall. Have mercy. I shot him a quick text that we won't have metal BBs in the wall after I get done painting. We are going with a medium shade of grey, which promises to be a challenge considering I'm painting over orange. I guess any color over orange would be a challenge. I invested in a good primer, so hopefully that will help. And I have to repaint his ceiling since there are little toe and foot prints above his bunk bed. So we are taking down the bunk bed, and I bought him a metal bed frame. It's a dark grey, so that will go nicely. I will paint his dresser navy blue, and we found a navy and grey and cream striped comforter. I think it will look really sharp, very grownish.
Of course Madalyn is freaking out. She said to me yesterday, "Ok, I will admit it... I'm a little jealous." She's still got a twin bed, and she's mad as fire that David already has a full size. She's already tired of her pink walls (that I just painted 18 months ago) and ready to change that. She wants a new comforter (even though her comforter is not that old and she picked it out herself). It's been very dramatic around here lately. I can't reason with her. Or, maybe, it's just that she throws the logic out the window that David's room hasn't been painted in seven years and hers was recently done. Madalyn is really good at throwing logic out the window. I have assured her that she doesn't get the short end of the stick around here. Truth is, we are waiting to get her a larger bed until she's older. She still plays in her room. And her room is laid out differently than David's, so there aren't many options for bed placement. But it's drama, high drama! She'll get over it.
She started cheer practice last night. The last time she cheered was first grade, and you were alive. Remember when I picked you up and took you to the game so you could see her cheer? You smiled the whole time even though your mouth was covered in sores from that experimental drug you were taking at the time, the one that didn't fight your cancer the way it was expected to. Seems so long ago. I ran across a picture the other day of the kids from 2012, and I was shocked to see how little they were when you died. I hate that. I hate it that they missed out on you, and I hate it that you missed out on being their Gammie. That sucks. I was in Cracker Barrel with Madalyn one day last week, and we were walking around the shopping area looking at all the stuff (which automatically reminds me of you). I saw this little sign that said "I love that you're my mom." I almost cried right there in the middle of overpriced gifts and nostalgic candy. I loved that you were my mom. It's hard when you've lost something that big, something that so many people have but take for granted.
I'm at this weird place right now. I notice older women every where I go lately, and I wonder to myself what you would have been like if you had lived. How you would have aged. What we would do together. I imagine birthdays and milestones. I imagine shopping with you. Would you wander off the way Grandma Norris always did? Would you drive me nuts? I don't know, never will. And that's hard. I see older women, and I feel compelled to go up to them and hug them and tell them that seeing them makes me miss my Mama even more than I did when I woke up that morning. But then people would think I had lost my mind, so I hold myself back. Oh these little things that haunt me all the time.
I've decided I am going back to school. Well, I am like 90% sure. It's time. I am sure you're doing cartwheels in heaven at the thought of it! You always wanted me to go back. I am thinking social work. I just feel pulled that way. Truth is, what in the world am I going to do once these kids are out of high school and beginning their own life? And Scott... Lord have mercy, he's worked his butt off all these years and can't realistically continue pulling 70 hour work weeks into his 60s. I can finish out a degree and start working. Even though I will never bring in the money Scott makes, I can bring in some, and that will hopefully give him the chance to step back a little when he's ready to do that. I have no idea if I want to work with the elderly or children or in a hospital setting, but I am guessing I will feel led to a certain place once I get in there and get my feet wet. I'm just ready to do it. I feel this excitement bubbling up inside me that I haven't felt in a very long time. I'm ready to plug my brain back in and use it. I'm terrified, but excited.
Well, I need to get up and get to work. I have a bunk bed to take apart and get out of my way. And lots and lots of painting to do. Wish you were here to help! I bet you're not one bit jealous!
Love you always...