For the past several weeks now, Mandy has been taking the two little ones to her friend's house to spend the day there every Tuesday. It works pretty darned good I think for all concerned. Gives her friend a couple extra bucks for watching Maya and Kurtis; gives me a little bit of a break from dealing with them 24/7 all the time and helps keep Mandy and her friend in closer contact too. They really enjoy each other's company, have a lot in common and well, all young mom's need to have a good friend - especially if that friend also has two small children of her own too - to keep the lines of communication running freer then, someone who can share the good and the bad parts of motherhood so much easier that way.
This morning, I was awakened by a strange sound shortly after 7 a.m. It really had me a bit confused at first too. It was Kurtis. But, the sound he was making wasn't the type of noise I am accustomed to having him make to wake me up! He was standing in his playpen and just laughing like crazy. The tv was on - of course (it's always on) and was on the NBC channel so the Today Show was the program that apparently little Kurtis was seeing something on the screen that really tripped his trigger. Bill was getting ready for work and I spoke to him about this strange phenomenom - Kurtis up and LAUGHING at that hour of the morning. I suppose stranger things than that have happened though.
Mandy took the kids around 8:15 or so to get them to her friend's house and still have time that she would get to work on time too. They didn't get back home today till about 3:30 and by 4 p.m., Maya was wiped out on the couch. Sound - and I do mean, really, really sound asleep! And she's been there ever since too and here it is now almost 10 p.m. She was semi-awake a little while ago and now that her Dad and big sister just got home from fishing, she's starting to spring to life. Soooo -if she's been napping now for close to 6 hours, I can just imagine how late she's going to keep good old Grammy up tonight!!! When Mandy called home a little while ago and I told her Maya was still asleep, she really wasn't too concerned because she said that Maya had played really hard ALL DAY with Nancy's little boy Ben - who is five and also, with Nancy's two little nephews who were there too.
Tonight, my son and Mandy went to the viewing and funeral for the young man who took his own life last Friday. After the funeral, they were going to the family's home for a while. I've had so many of my regular readers thank me for posting about what happened to him and for being honest in explaining his death was a suicide. The general consensus of opinion was that this is a topic all too often we try not to think about, rarely discuss the ramifications of it. But, because it does happen and when it does, it really knocks a person on their tail for a while too.
People have mentioned the gamut of emotions that take over when a close family member or friend has taken his/her own life -anger and guilt being two that really do get a grip on the survivors. And I remember when my cousin did that, how torn our family was.
We had one uncle still living at that time and he had always been quite close to my cousin as well as to the others in that uncle's family. But my cousin Dave had been the baby there and well - ya'll know how it tends to be with the baby of any family - they do get a bit more attention most of the time.
About two months before my cousin's death, he and his mother and his three daughter had decided to drive to this uncle's place and spent New Year's with him and our aunt. That uncle also happened to own and operate a roller skating rink so Dave's three little girls had a great time skating and my uncle and Dave had very much enjoyed this time together.
But at that time too, there were two things about Dave that our uncle (and the rest of the family as well) didn't know. One was that Dave and his wife were separated and the other was that none of us were aware that Dave had a very bad problem with alcohol. Two months later, after having been out drinking, Dave had wrecked his vehicle and was arrested for a DUI at the time. He was released to go home and being a truck driver - and drunk - not thinking straight at all, plus being depressed because of the marital problems, his thoughts were that he would lose his job, be unable to keep current with the child support and a myriad of other terrible thoughts all of which led him to go home, take out a gun and put it to his head and pull the trigger.
After his death and for several years Dave's oldest sister always worried that our uncle perhaps could not forgive her brother for the actions he had taken. And, I always believed then - still do -that there was never any question over whether our uncle forgave Dave, as I know he did. But it was rather that he could never forgive himself for not understanding, not knowing what terrible feelings Dave had and the magnitude of his addiction to alcohol that brought him to that point.
One of my favorite bloggers used my post to take this issue a step further in her blog. She's a 911 dispatcher up in Connecticut and in her job, she has often had to be the first person family members had to speak to when calling for help after finding a loved one dead from suicide. This is an issue she very much has strong feelings about and I'd recommend - if you don't already read her blog -"Are We There Yet" - that especially for this particular post, you read what Linda has to say. And maybe, just maybe, between my talking about this here and Linda talking about it on her blog, maybe someone will read our words and through them, recognize some warning signs and be able to help someone from doing something this drastic.
Who knows, just bringing this subject to the forefront may also help some who have gone through the loss of a loved one in this manner to understand some things, release themselves from the blame and guilt and pain somehow. And maybe, just maybe, the words will get someone to stop and think before taking such a terrible action.
Maybe, just maybe a whole lot of prayers just might help too, don't 'cha think?
And now, cause I am really getting almost as "tuckered out" tonight as Maya was this afternoon and evening, on this eve of the 4th of July, I'm going to be nice and forgo posting the Bushism for the 4th -it can wait till tomorrow - and ask that we all stop and remember too what a great and glorious land we live in and how so many of our soldiers are now far from home, involved in a conflict not by their choice necessarily but because the government says it is their job. Whether each of us supports our being in Iraq is really immaterial as what counts is that we all do support those men and women sent there to do a terribly difficult job.
Remember them, remember their families left behind here at home too and pray that they will be back home soon, very soon, where they belong - safe and sound.