Monday, May 8, 2017

April 2017

April 2017 has changed our lives forever. Flipped us inside out; turned our lives around; and made us stop cold and re-evaluate everything we knew. April 2017 is the month my daddy died. My daddy, who was not just my daddy but my law partner, Charlotte's Pop, and many more thinngs to many more people. It's weird to think we were just going on with the mundane things of life that day, only to be slapped in the face by his unexpected arrhythmia. One day I will recount the events of that day and the following two weeks but I am not ready quite yet even though they are burned into my brain. Just suffice it for now to know that that day, and the following two weeks that preceded his death were the worst. We are grateful that we had those two weeks with him to prepare ourselves and say our goodbyes, even though he was asleep, but nothing could prepare us for life without him. We will never be the same but life must go on and he would want us to go out and live it to the fullest, just like he did.
That being said, here is a look at some of the very few things we did during april in efforts to maintain a sense of normalcy, especially for Charlotte. Even though this time was painful, I want to document it because it happened and it was significant and therefore deserves to be remembered as it is part of our history now, even though we hate the fact that it is.

This is the last picture I took before it all happened. I stayed home from work that morning because we were starting potty training boot camp that weekend.

Charlotte had her school Easter egg hunt and party. My sister escaped from the hospital to go with us and that made it extra special for Charlotte. She loved hunting eggs and I have to say was quite the egg finding rock star. She also loved seeing the Easter bunny and loading up on sugar with her friends.

The only photo I have of Charlotte at the hospital. She never saw Pop but I brought her to the waiting room many times to see my mom and cheer her up. She succeeded in making many people smile!

Although she is much too young to understand, Charlotte knew something was wrong. Mommy wasn't home, he schedule was off, and she picked up on the anxiety that was running high. This is a rare night where I was home with her rather than at the hospital. It felt nice to spend some silly time just playing with her and it went a long way in helping her cope with the situation she found herself in.

Not the greatest picture but she had a blast going to Henry's birthday party at the Factory, and trampoline jumping place. She still asks to go back.

Easter Sunday was quite different for us. No church, no family lunch, just hospital. We did give Charlotte her presents from the Easter bunny. I actually thought we would wait but we needed a little joy that day. You can't help but smile when you see this precious face.

The night before the funeral, Charlotte and I went to Singing Sprouts, her music class. It was nice to get out in the real world and do something that she loved. It felt nice to feel happy for a few minute. 

After the funeral, we were all kind of lost. How do you continue on with regular life? Well, you just kind of have to. The world doesn't stop for you, no matter what happens (and neither does a toddler for that matter) so you just put on your big girl panties and face the next day, one step at the time.  Here we are riding the train at the Falls, one of Charlotte's favorite things to do. She loves to see the animals and play on the playground. We actually were there the weekend before all of the drama and afterwards had lunch with Dad. 

Forrest and I also attended the Regency Ball at the end of the month. I went back and forth about whether I wanted to go and I figured that since I had to see people and put a smile on my face for work, I could and should do it for fun things too. It was actually great--so many friends told me they were glad to see us out and about and that they knew that is what Dad would have wanted us to be doing. They are right of course. 

We have been helping out a lot at Mom's house, and here is Charlotte "helping" to water the plants, and herself. Someone is ready for summer! 

After daddy died I was afraid to take Charlotte to his house for hear she would ask about him. I told her quickly he had gone to heaven to be with Jesus but death of course is too much for a little one so I wasn't sure what she would do. One night we were at my moms eating and Charlotte went into the cabinet and pulled out this bag of Bugles. My dad loved those things and would share them with Charlotte when she came over. She opened the bag and just sat down and started eating them. She loved at me and said "Pop bugles". I was so happy that she remembered this little detail and even though it also hurt, it was nice to know that she would only have happy memories of him and not remember any of the terrible times we endured. 

Charlotte also had doughnuts with daddy at school. Forrest had been looking forward to it all year and she was so excited for daddy to get to go with her to school that day. I hoped to get a picture of the two of them but instead I got this hilarious one of her and her buddy Wes. 

Well, that is April--unexpected, gut checking, worst month of my life. However, we learned a lot about ourselves, about life and love and family, and just exactly what the good things in life truly are. 

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