Friday, August 6, 2010

Not forgetting.....Not dwelling

Today while I was at Home Depot, the cashier asked about my tattoo. "I like your tattoo" she said. "Thanks" I responded. "Who's footprint is it?" "Oh, its my sons". "How old is he?" "Actually the reason I have this tattoo is because he only lived three days." "Oh I'm SO sorry!" she replied. "Thats ok, It makes me happy that you asked, It makes me remember." .... Its a hard thing, death, especially when no one understands it. If my tattoo had been for a grandparent or something I wouldn't have had to explain it at all. No one would ask "how old is your grandma?" And so the conversation about the tattoo would most likely end there, but as soon as I say "my son" it just opens the door for questions. Which in all honesty, I am glad for. I actually feel bad for the people that ask the question because they don't know whats about to hit them. I however have no problem talking about it, because its easy to forget someone that is no longer around, but not if people are always asking about them. Im glad people ask.

The last few weeks have been really good. Crista and I have been fighting a lot less. Which has taken a lot of the stress out of our relationship. We finally (with a lot of blessings from others!) paid off the last of Joshua's medical bills and are almost caught up on our other bills. We made the decision to not try to have a baby, but to not try to stop it form happening if it is Gods will. So Crista stopped using birth control which actually doesn't even matter because when she got pregnant with Joshua she was on birth control and it didn't even work. And we also set a time line as to when we want to be out of her Grandma's house. We are hoping to be out of here in 6 to 9 months. After we buy a second car the next process is to find a place to live. I am super excited to be out of here, Its too stressful because there are so many people here and we just don't have enough privacy. So I am very excited about that.

Also my parents are moving to Tyler Texas. This is a bitter sweet thing for me, on one hand I am super excited for the opportunity for them, but on the other Its going to be hard to be here with out them. Also my sister is planing on moving to Vermont in the fall. Crista and I will be the only ones left here from my immediate family. I am sad but change is good, It helps us not get stagnant.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The last couple of months...

The last couple of months have been..... well interesting, to say the least. June was a hard one, between Joshua's one year "anniversary" to Crista and I's seemingly constant bickering, It was a hard month.
One of the coolest things that happened june of 2010, was when we went to the coast for the anniversary of Joshua's passing. We rented a hotel, ate good food and just spent the day together. On the 5th, which is the date that Joshua passed, we drove to the lighthouse that I proposed to Crista at, I through Joshua's urn off the cliff into the water. It was just like turning another page in the book of our lives. I told Crista that I thought it would be good for both of us, she told me later that she had kept a small amount of his ashes, without telling me. I was a little frustrated at first but I realized that she needed to keep some just for her. That trip was very good.
I also finally got my Joshua tribute tattoo! It is his left footprint with his first and middle name over it and his last name under it. It also has the dates on the left and right sides of it. It looks super good and it is starting the "sleeve" that I hope to have done someday! At the same time I also got four music notes tattooed for my Grandma Holland who passed away this year. She was a huge influence in my life, she got me involved in music and always wanted me to play worship songs for her. I am going to miss her but I am glad she isn't in any pain and she is dancing with Jesus and Joshua! She will be the first one (except Jesus) to see him open his eyes. I can't wait for that day when I can see them too.
I also got a job in June. It is just part time but it is at Kendall Chevrolet where I used to work as a mechanic. It also the only job I have ever been fired from. Its a long story but the short version is I took something without asking and they were forced to let me go. It is great for me because it shows me that they know that I am a hard worker and I am valuable to the company! It is hard working again, while it is nice to not be living on unemployment anymore it is hard to get all the things done I want to with the limited time I have now. I'll get over that soon, I think that it is good for Crista too because she was getting tired of me being at home all day. I am excited because It will help me get back in the groove and will give me time for when I start school!
July has been a great month Crista and I just got back from camping at the coast with her parents and two youngest sisters. Her sister Jessica couldn't come due to money which is a disappointment because Im sure everyone would have loved to see her and Greyson (my nephew) Also her brother pat didn't come. He is going through a big stage of rebellion in his life. I wish there was something I could do for him but I think this is one of the times that we all go through where no one can help us but Jesus. I hope Pat finds Jesus's love before he does something he will regret.
I am leading worship on Sunday! I am super excited, It is going to be a lot of fun. The only bummer is that I am only leading 3 songs, but am still stoked! God I am your tool, you have made me by hand and shaped me for your purpose's. Please use me in that way so that I can honor your name!
Well I hope and pray that Jesus uses this blog for something good in your lives! Untill next time....

Thursday, June 3, 2010

1 Year Later...

Its funny how a particular moment in time can feel decades old and like yesterday at the same time. It has been a full year since Joshua was born, I cant believe this particular milestone has arrived here so fast. I has been harder for me than I anticipated, I don't know how Crista is really doing. On mothers day I thought it would be really hard for her but she seemed to be ok with it. The next day was a lot more difficult for her because she had kept herself busy and distracted until the next day. I know Joshua's party thing will be good for her and I am excited to take her out of town just the two of us.
For me I really don't know how I am feeling. I know it hurts and I know I miss him, but other than that I don't know what to feel. As horrible as it might sound I'd just like to put this all behind me. Is there a way to do that without forgetting? I NEVER want to forget Joshua, he will always be my first born and my son. I just don't want to remember the whole experience over and over again. I know it is impossible but sometimes I would like it.
After all this time the only question I really have is this... God why would you allow Crista to get pregnant despite the fact she was using birth control, and we didn't feel ready for a baby, and then take him from us? What is your grand master plan in that? Am I wrong or are hundreds of thousands of unwanted babies born every year? Couldn't you have taken one of those babies? What is it I am supposed to learn from this? I know and believe everything happens for a reason, what is the reason for this happening?? Please strengthen me, I need you more than ever! Help guide me in this time. Please make me a leader of my house, give me strength, wisdom, patience, grace (for myself and others) peace, humbleness, and purpose!
Joshua, I love and miss you so very much. I cant wait to see you. I know Jesus is taking good care of you and I am thankful that you will never have to feel like he has left you or feel the hurt, pain and sorrow of the world. -Dad

P.S. Since you have an in with God, would you please tell him that your daddy really wants a Oregon Duck Football National Championship this year (well I want one every year but I don't want to be greedy) If He could hook me up I would really appreciate it! Thanks little man! Love ya!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Will it ever get better?

Well, since this is my first post it will probably be one of the longest because I have some background to cover!
First, My Name is Matthew and on July 18th, 2008 I Married the most amazing woman in the world Crista. Crista and I were married for about three months when we found out that despite using birth control she was pregnant. When the dust settled we were both very excited to start this journey into family life.
On Wednesday June 3rd Crista went into labor, she labored for 12 hours and at 12pm exactly Joshua Alan Nice was born. Unfortunately he was born not breathing and with no heart beat. To this day no one knows what happened. We prayed for two days for God to heal our son, but he had other plans. On Friday June 5th we said our goodbyes.
It was the single hardest thing I have ever had to do.
It has now almost been one year. Its been a tough year too, I lost my job, we lost our apartment, I lost my Grandma Holland. She has been one of the biggest influences in my life. Its just been rough.
Crista, and I have had major ups and downs too. Its really hard for me, she hurts daily. I wake up to her crying and I try to be comforting but its really hard for me. I have let Joshua go, I think about him all the time but I know he is in a better place. I also never had the same relationship that Crista had with him. She felt him every day, she talked to him, prayed for him, and dreamed about him daily. I will never know him the way she did. The biggest struggle is that lately the memories and pain have really affected her mood and attitude. We fight constantly. She doesn't have the patience or confidence in herself that she used to. So because of that when I tease her like I always have she gets upset. This change of personality has been very hard for me to adapt to.
I have always teased the people I love. Its kind of a love language for me. I kind of do it with out thinking. I need to learn to be more kind and think about what I say and do more, but I cant change over night and I feel like she should give me some grace! Also its really hard for me to comfort her. I am a guy, and as a guy I always try to fix things. Crista cant be fixed by me, she is the kind of broken that only God and time can heal and that frustrates me to no end! I have no answers, no words, and no insight. I am just as helpless as she is.
We are almost at the one year anniversary, on June 3rd 2010 Joshua would have been 1 year old. My hope and prayer is that after the 3rd maybe things will get better. My hope is that after this very identifiable date that Crista and I will be able to move on.
God, I know You lost Your one and only Son, Please be with me and my wife with the grief of ours. I know You are the only one who can take away our pain. Please dont leave us alone, Please be our strength!