The resounding theme over the past 7-8 months has been “It’s been forever since I’ve written.” I think about it often and unfortunately finding the quiet time to sit down and write is non-existent. Life is very challenging now and 24/7 caregiving + essentially being a single mom is exhausting. We have tremendous support, and for that I am eternally grateful.
A friend recently encouraged me to write more frequently (“people want to hear from you!”) but write short blog posts that are manageable. So, I’M BACK! I’ll write more frequently: specifically I’ll give an update soon on:
- Jeff (medically and emotionally). How does Jeff handle the emotional side of this? If you’ve been in his presence at all, it doesn’t take long to recognize what a remarkable man he is.
- What we’ve been up to the past 6 months, since returning from our 6 week trip out west.
- How Evan and Cole are doing (school, rock climbing, and handling a terminal illness)
- Support from near and far. Support from friends, family and strangers. Support so overwhelming (that we desperately need) that we carry tremendous guilt over wondering if you know…do you know how life changing your support is for us? Do you know how grateful we are? Do you know we couldn’t do this without you? Do you know that prayers are being answered? Do you know we value EVERYTHING that is done for us but we don’t have the time, energy or capacity to reach out and tell you? Do you know we cry over it? Do you know? The thought of you not knowing or feeling appreciated, recognized or valued, pierces my heart. Thank you.
AN OPEN LETTER TO MY BEST FRIEND(S)
Thank you for being one of the deepest and most meaningful connections in my life (both long lasting deep friendships + new friendships). “Friendship is not about who you’ve known the longest. It’s about who walked into your life, said “I’m here” for you and prove it.”
Thank you for listening with empathy, kindness, and love when I’m having down days. Thank you for just sitting with me in it and saying “Tara, I’m so sorry. That sucks. Instead of singing ‘The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow.’”
Thank you for knowing so much about ALS and caregiving, and for making it our problem…not just mine.
Friendships have been difficult during this stage of life. Sustaining friendships takes work and time that I don’t have, but ours has never felt difficult, even on the darkest days. You forgive the unanswered text and text again anyway. You forgive the unanswered call and call again. I do care. I care a lot. I just don’t have the capacity to show it fully right now. Do you remember the old Tara? She’s still there, she’s just forever changed by grief and trauma.
Thank you for reminding me I’m strong and beautiful in all of my mess. I need to hear it. I need to know it’s not meaningless. Your texts of encouragement? They are often saved and read over and over and over again so that I can sing with confidence that I am loved and cared for. I value you too.
Thank you for being with me for the one-two punch in my life. A one-two punch is a combination of two blows delivered in rapid succession in boxing, especially a left jab (BOOM, you’re going to lose your father unexpectedly) followed by a right cross (BOOM, shortly thereafter you’re going to lose your husband too).
Thank you for giving me permission to feel various emotions, thoughts, and feelings. We think that people will only value our existence or welcome our presence if we’re always positive. Suffering and sadness are just as much a part of existing as joy, compassion, and love.
So thank you for simply saying “I’m so sorry.”
And not, “I’m so sorry, BUT, look on the bright side.” There is no bright side. Those words minimize my pain and heavy emotions.
And most of all, thank you for doing stupid stuff and making me laugh. You’re hilarious and I love laughing with you!
All my love,