Category Archives: Family

Grandpa and Em, Easter 2007

Heartbreak – Part 1

My beloved Grandpa, Ken Worden, left us today. It had been a long (to me) battle with Alzheimer’s and a short battle with an infection. I wasn’t ready. He wasn’t supposed to go first. While he had us fooled for a while with the severity of his Alzheimer’s he was never as “bad” as Grandma. I’m not ready.

This beautiful man (seriously, he was a looker!) has been such a positive influence in my life. Things were never awkward between us as I transitioned from child to teen to adult. He wasn’t just my Grandpa, he was everyone’s Grandpa; friends from school and church knew him as Grandpa and knew they could trust him with anything. His laughter, patience and indulgence in childhood wishes are an example of parenthood and grand-parenthood that anyone can look up to.

I need to write to help get my tears flowing – this whole downhill slide has prepared me for this, but it still hurts my heart – but I’m finding I don’t have the sufficient words at the moment to truly express how this man’s life has made such an impression on me and how big the hole is in my heart.

At least not in coherent sentences. But I do have individual words and phrases.



Leverite (Leave ‘er right there)

Just for the halibut

Praline ice cream

Victor Borge

Bus driver




Butt pats

Boysenberry syrup

Body surfing

Nose rings


Rock hound


Green dealer’s visor



Instant coffee

Rainbow trout



Wheel of Fortune




And there was always room for you in his lap in his recliner, no matter how big you were.


I love you Grandpa.


Not the best picture of my Grandpa, but the one I could find really fast and that stuck in my mind.

Grandpa and Em, 2004

Grandpa and Em, Easter 2007

(If any of you have any other words that describe Grandpa, please feel free to share them in comments below.)

Focusing on the RIGHT Things

The last week or so has been full of ups and downs for me, the downs mostly coming from two states away.

I have the ability to get so completely focused on one thing that I don’t see other things around me. This ability allows me to accomplish more at my office than most because I’ll “tune out” and get a 3-day project done in 4 hours. But sometimes I focus on the wrong things.

To help me re-focus…

  • I have a beautiful daughter. From an early age she has been able to identify those who need the most help, need a kind touch or need justice. She is intelligent and eager to learn. She is athletic and hard-working. She is generous with her love and accepting of all people. Her giggle never fails to make me laugh along with her. She is independent and helpful. She is selfless and giving. I am so blessed to have her as my daughter. I am proud of who she is and her future.
  • I have a beautiful immediate family. My parents who live less than 5 miles from me and my sister and brother-in-law who live almost 2000 miles from me. My family is always there for me, no matter what. Whether it’s advice, hugs, laughter, mutual tears, babysitting services, transportation, food…I can always count on them. My mother who is my best friend, a second mom to my daughter and my toughest coach. My father who always has sage advice and new ways of thinking around problems. My sister who loves me no matter how much she might “hate” me at times. I am blessed to come from a wonderful family of lovers and givers.
  • I have a beautiful boyfriend. The never-ending patience he has while I slowly mend the hole in my heart never ceases to amaze me. His calm voice and gentle touch keep me grounded when I over-analyze things to the point of hysteria. His humor and laughter are just as contagious as my daughter’s. He is constantly reminding me that I am beautiful, loved and worth all the trouble I cause. He treats me as his equal in all aspects of his life, even though I feel like he is the better half of our relationship. I am blessed every day to have him in my world and in the future I imagine ahead of me.
  • I have a beautiful church family. Whether it’s people I see every Sunday, people I see once a month, or people I haven’t seen in years – the love and support I get from these people is overwhelming. I know that I can call on any one of these family members to help me see the other side of things, to stand beside me, to comfort me, to get me out of the house, to pray for me… What a remarkable blessing to have so many people ready and willing to help me in any way possible.
  • I have beautiful friends across the world. Some of these I’ve known practically all my life, some I’ve known for a little over a year and some I’ve never met and don’t even know their real names. These people have entered my life through school, family, work, the internet or happenstance. These people send me notes of encouragement and stand up for me. These people  recognize the goodness in others before they recognize the goodness in themselves. People who believe strongly in the power of prayer and people in whom I see a bit of God even if they do not believe in the same God I do. People who know that I cry – a lot – and that it’s OK. All of these people touch my heart on a regular basis and I feel blessed that all of these friends accept me for who I am and continue to choose to be in my life.

I need to focus on that list. When it seems that my life is spiraling out of control, that I’m going to lose everything I have, that my whole world is going to turn upside down, THIS LIST will help me to remember that I am not alone no matter how many walls I put up between myself and others. THIS LIST needs to be my main focus.

I Cried…

I haven’t posted in a while. Mostly because I feel like I have nothing to say. And yet, here I am. A lot has happened since I last posted, but honestly… It takes too much effort to write about what all has happened. So here’s the Reader’s Digest version: Mom, Dad, and “Em” came to visit for a week. Great visit. Been working a lot lately, working not enough overtime and too much overtime at the same time… If that makes sense. Depression has been worse lately, but not much I can do about that. Other than that, nothing has changed.

Today at work, I was overcome by my emotions. Hearing about my best friend “Amber’s” family drama upset me enough that it put me over the edge. No, Amber, this was NOT your fault, and yes, PLEASE continue to keep me informed of what’s going on. Today was a crazy fluke, I promise! I was feeling guilty for thinking my own family problems were bad, anger that someone could treat Amber and her family so rudely, and stresssing about a million different things. While sitting at my desk, alone in my little cubicle, I broke down and I cried. I texted my sister to tell her that I finally cried in my cubicle (she’s had more crazy hormones than I have), and we talked for a while. After about 40 minutes of crying (and not working, since I couldn’t see my computer screen through my tears, let alone didn’t care about work since it was one of the reasons I was crying), I ran out of tears (but not snot – funny how that works…).

I cried in outrage. I cried in anger. I cried in fear. I cried because I feel empty inside. I don’t feel like myself anymore. For 15 1/2 weeks I have been off my depression medication, and for once I can see myself as who I am without them. I don’t like to think of them as a crutch, but I’ve seen people in my own life who have said to themselves “Wow, the drugs cured me, I’m all better” and stop taking them – and then all Hell breaks loose. But for me, I know that they aren’t a cure for the chemical imbalance that I deal with everyday. There isn’t a cure for it. I like who I am on the medication because it makes me happy and healthy. I’m not suicidal when I’m off my meds, though some people can be. I am a “worst day ever-everyday” person when I’m off my meds. There’s this constant-rain-cloud-following-me feeling; this got-dressed-in-the-dark-so-the-brown-pants-I-think-I-put-on-are-actually-black-and-I-clash-and-don’t-notice-until-I-get-to-the-office feeling; this can’t-do-anything-right feeling. The world isn’t out to get me (although, I maintain that my cats are), but I just don’t want to get out of bed, and when I do, I regret it. I. Deal. With. This. Every. Day. For four months. And I have five more to go, plus possibly more with nursing.

I half-wondered if this guy “Kevin” who sits next to me would come over and check on me because I was sniffling and breathing heavy (hard to breathe when you’re nose is stuffed from crying). But he didn’t. I also half-expected the manager who sits next to me, “Michelle”, to check up on me because I one point I accidentally let out one of those half-hiccup-half-sobs. But she didn’t. I’m glad they didn’t. Because when people see me cry, I cry harder. And how do you explain to a manager that one of the reasons you’re crying is because I’m ready to be a housewife again? That would be me talking bad about my job, although in a roundabout way. I like my job, though it is extremely repetitive, and a monkey could do it. But I miss being home. I miss seeing my husband. I come home at 8:30, and we see each other for about two hours before we go to bed. Two hours a night isn’t enough when I’m used to five or six.

Normally, when I’m done crying, I feel so much better. But then again, that’s usually because my husband is there to give me a hug. Note added after the fact: I made this sound like my husband is the reason I’m crying, and he’s not! He just happens to help me STOP crying. :) Today, I just felt like I wanted to keep crying. Twice more I’ve had to wipe tears out of my eyes and tell myself to knock it off. Two hours after I had this “melt-down” I had a team meeting. I felt like eyes were still puffy and my nose was red. Nobody said anything or looked at me weird, so it’s probably just me. But I felt so disconnected in the meeting.

That’s one of the things I told “Amber” when I was talking to her. I feel so disconnected. Not so much from the world, just in general. Sure, there’s Facebook to keep up with my family. No problem keeping up with my sister – she posts about 15 status updates a day! ;P Love ya Sister! But I’m just not interested in doing anything. Ever. All my passion is gone. I don’t want to cook, I don’t want to clean (well, I never want to clean), I don’t want to crochet, I don’t want to play video games, I don’t want to watch TV. I just want to sleep.

I’m just so tired of feeling like this.

And that’s just one of the reasons why, today, I cried…