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Showing posts from 2016

A small glimmer of light...

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Today marked a step in the right direction for the giraffe boy. This morning, after a few rough days, Javad returned back to school. Eighteen months after a devastating seizure...almost eighteen months exactly, he was back. He is only going for half a day, but it's a start.

I think about the last eighteen months. It's been rough. I am still struggling with grief. Sometimes I feel like guilty that I feel grief...I am still struggling with the incredible sense of loss and sorrow. I go through the days, mostly okay. My goal is to not cry...each and every day. Sometimes it's when I'm alone, sometimes I'm not. The tears just come...it often makes me feel weak.

Today was a small crack of light shining in. A day where a glimmer of hope became rooted. Javad went back to school today. I'm not saying that things are ok, but I think they're slowly getting better.


Stay Positive...

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So last year when school was getting ready I was trying to feel hopeful about so many things. I didn't realize I was in such a pit...maye because I hadn't struck bottom yet. I think I found the bottom this past year and am now crawling up. I say that I am crawling because it is the best description of how I feel I am right now...Crawling back into my life. Realistically, I am in the rebuilding phase.

Depression and sorrow are real. Sorrow driving to depression is even more real. People often discount that those who are strong can struggle. That is the story of my life these days. I am trying to refuse to let this sorrow control my life any more. This year will be better.

I am ready to finally turn a new leaf over...I am ready to move forward, whatever that might mean. One day at a time, I work on healing. Maybe this will be my year. Maybe next year I'll be able to say "Good Job Shannon...you did it!"

Creating a Life...

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"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." ~George Bernard Shaw

This is one of my favorite quotes. I remember when I first read this it was like a bolt of lightning surged through me. The power of creation can feel overwhelming. We are in the ultimate power position...creating the life that we want. I think about my youth and the daily grind of floating through daily life, there was no real concern for the future, just taking things as they came.

It's interesting watching time pass...you begin to examine the bigger picture...what is it that prompts this? Sometimes it's age, sometimes it's regret....for me, it has been grief and sorrow. A chasm so big that it seemed uncrossable.

I was defeated...Head hanging. I knew that the pit was deep. When I opened my eyes the walls of the chasm were there. I felt defeated. It seemed like nothing was going to help....that this feeling was going to be one that lasted forever. Dead inside, a cloudy…

The beating of my heart...

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Today was one of the most epic, life altering days. For many who have read yesterday's blog (and possibly the OregonLive article), this is not new news. Today I nearly had to pinch myself just to see if it was real. I was talked to by co-workers, my phone blowing up from tags on Facebook. It has been surreal. You need to understand the hole I have been in...it has been so deep that I wondered if I would ever get out. The storm has been swirling around my head, in my heart, making the beating so loud I can barely hear. The TIFO from yesterday's game seems fitting, "When the beating of your heart echoes the beating of the drums." Les Miserables...one of my greatest memories. I watched it in London years ago...one of the first times I was alone and traveling. I watched from an "obstructed view" seat, leaning on the railing with my head on my hands. Tears streamed down my face, the power of the message so clear and strong. Freedom...That trip, long ago, signifi…

Best.Day.Ever!!

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For those of you who read this regularly (or sometimes), you know what this last eighteen months has been like. There have been highs and lows...lots of lows! Since Javad's seizure, I feel like I have been living in a fog. Work has been rough, home has been rough, life...has been rough. Javad's healing from that fateful day has been slow...sometimes painfully slow. Throughout his life, I have tried hard not to ask for more...ask for things that seem unreasonable but when it comes to your children, it's hard. When it come to Javad, it's especially hard. He just has gotten some crummy breaks, times when it feels like we are moving one step forward, then a zillion steps backwards. It can be hard not to feel a bit defeated. I think the winds of change are coming...I feel it!

This weekend I walked Portland to Coast for the second time with a group of amazing women! Last year, we were somewhat strangers...every one of us knowing someone on the team, but not necessarily more …

Stand Tall...

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It has been months since I have written...this is a sign of how much I am struggling, when even my "therapy" is overwhelming. I have always been one that people consider strong...I handle things. I do. I have it handled.

I feel like this has been the year where nothing is handled. I have cried almost every day. I felt it was the worst year of my teaching life. Emotionally I have struggled. My house is a mess, my relationships are a mess, my normal outgoing self has drawn inside of myself. Some of you would say that isn't true...that you have seen me and I seem fine. It's a front. I'm good at it. When I come home I am inside myself, saying five words to others. Exhausted and done. The fact that I am sharing this right now is therapeutic. I am tired of living like this...miserable and unhappy.

Someone said to me the other day that it seemed like my hiking was going well...in some ways that's true (although I haven't hiked in two weeks because my schedule is…

Pieces of me...

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I was just looking at my list of blog posts and it has been over a month since I have written. This is a long time for me, It is also very telling. Writing is a form of therapy. It is a way that I work through my life, celebrate the good, discuss the not so good. So one might think...hooray....the lack of writing means all things rainbow and unicorn, but I am sorry to say that is not true.

This is what I have learned this last month...

living from a place of trauma is a real thing.trying to maintain a normal exterior when your insides feel like they are crumbling is hard.teaching is a hard job and sometimes I feel wholly inadequate to do it.I may look strong but I need to be held up more often than one might think.when I am scared and feeling alone, I become needy and immature in many ways...a person that I don't like.it is a hard balance between "staying strong" and being real. Last year when Javad had his seizure, I was changed. So many things changed. Although I forged…

Three weeks one day at a time...

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We have been in the hospital for almost three weeks. Javad is getting daily physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy for hours a day. He is battling a virus, which means extra respiratory treatments and exhaustion. The doctors have asked for an additional week to compensate for the virus so it looks like we will be here for at least another week. Who knew that I would be excited to to be at the hospital for four weeks (or more)?

Javad's therapy is going really well...he has increased his stamina, and is looking more like his "old self" in pictures and in person.  It is pretty exciting. On April 7 they will have him checked out for a new wheelchair (YES!!! A NEW WHEELCHAIR!!!) which would be amazing!

Overall I am pleased, I am tired, I am weary, but I am pleased. Life hasn't been easy in the recent months but it's nice to have a small and shining light in Javad right now. I am so appreciative of people in my life that are stepping up to support m…

The strength of an Army...

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Yesterday was opening day of the Portland Timbers...the team whose MLS Cup run and win sustained my spirit last year. If you haven't read about last year, read about Javad, the giraffe and the MLS Cup here. It was a great day. A few hours before the game a friend called and offered me ticket. I had already prepped Javad and told him that we were going to watch the game together, had the nurse lined up to be in Javad's room because he was "needed." It was a plan. Then the call came and my plan changed quickly.

IT WAS GLORIOUS!!!

I got to meet to site in a section that I had never been before, got to watch soccer with people who loved the game as much as I do, cheered loudly, yelled at the ref, felt the love from the people around me, jeered at the Columbus Crew and their hideous uniforms, and finished the game off in fine Portland fashion...in the rain.

There are so many areas of my life that aren't working right now...so many areas that I feel like I am not winnin…

Picking up the pieces...one at a time

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Today when I was hiking I was doing a lot of thinking. I was with two great women, two women who six months ago I either didn't know or barely knew. At the end of this month I am celebrating my three months back at hiking. When I was young my dad took me out a lot. It was what we did...camping and hiking. I am sure that there was a lot of complaining on my part...sometimes there still is a lot of complaining. Now I sprinkle in profanity occasionally too.

So I was thinking about where I am in my life, the places I'm doing well, the places I'm not. This last year the tiny cracks of my life became chasms. For a long time I suffered in silence thinking that it was better to just deal. This cause such pressure inside me that I thought I would burst. Now I am talking...and talking is creating its own issues. It is both empowering and heart breaking. Honestly, I am not sure which emotion is winning. Adulting is hard, relationships are hard. Sometimes....life is hard.

Long ago I …

Joy and sorrow...one day at a time...

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It has been a rough few weeks. Two weeks ago Javad was admitted into the PICU for pneumonia...his heart rate was a 180 for over an hour. We spent a week in the PICU, which for Javad standards is a blink of the eye...the day before the speedy PICU admission we had been a the doctor asking for the possibility of being admitted for intensive rehab. I was prepared to really list my reasons and potentially fight as to why this was in Javad's best interest...we were reaching the point where if we didn't do SOMETHING, we may not move any farther. It was an easy sell...so easy that here we are a week later...in Rehab.

It's been a rough few weeks for our little MTM-CNM community. It seems that there is a rise is heart or seizure related activity. More and more I am realizing that, although incredibly horrible, we dodged a bullet last year. Javad survived and, although we are unsure of all the potential damage, he seems fairly unscathed. I mean, let's be realistic...we have lost…

When life reminds you that things will be ok...

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This last weekend I went to Bend, OR with my girlfriend, partner in crime from work, and overall awesome woman. The goal of the weekend was to sleep, do a hike, grade some papers, and enjoy spending some time together. There were challenges, like when our original hike ended with a snow covered dead end road, and victories, finding a new hike that was just the right size and at the end, a little gift that reminded me that I am on the right path.

As I have shared before, this has been a year that has pushed my limits, made me wonder if I was going to lose my mind. I had flashbacks of twenty years ago when I thought I would be lost in the crazy, and found myself deep in sorrow I couldn't express.  I have struggled to find joy, find strength, and find peace and worse, I feel that I have been walking the path alone. When you have always been the strong one and now you feel weak, where do you turn?

Asking for help has been uncharted territory, one that I am working on. Expressing my fe…

Time passes...where am I?

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Time has passed. I realize that it has been almost a month since I have written. So much has happened, yet so little has happened. Things have moved forward and we have stayed in the same place. Someone reminded me the other day about how long it had been since I blogged...

There is no real reason for this...I'm overwhelmed, I'm swimming, I'm trying to stay afloat, I'm making it. It's been a weird time but a growing time. This has been one of the hardest years of my life. I know that you know because I've been open and honest about the struggle. I am grateful for the people that are in my life, those who have stepped up, those who have come out of nowhere, grateful that they kept me from falling off the ledge when it was so frightening.

I'll admit that I wish I could have been better, wish I could have handled things better. On the outside, to most, I seemed okay, not great, but handling. I really wasn't handling much...inside I was spiraling out of con…