A long weekend without many plans.

So much time to get things done; do a bit of work, serve at church, work around the house and relax.

Sleep in.

Play with the dogs.

Take care of the caterpillars and butterflies.

Swim in our pool.

Quiet, nice relaxing, low key weekend.

And then your one real plan of the weekend gets canceled and you realize everyone else has plans with their families.

Their families with kids.

That irrational, inner critic voice inside your head whispers,

Get used to this, you’ll get canceled on the the rest of your life for the fun with the families with kids.

Everyone will always be too busy with their kids to fit you into their calendar.

The shame, the sadness and that dark sense of being left behind settles in.

Of course, I know this is not my truth but the fog that can easily move in from shame hovers over me almost the entire weekend; enveloping all of me if I am not careful.

Of course, there is the bigger part of me that has enjoyed the quietness of this weekend. The quality time with Chad and the dogs, butterflies and caterpillars. The time to finally work around the house and on my writing with some time off of our regular work schedule.

But I struggled a lot to take my usual deep knowing breath and  puff away the fog, even through this gratitude and joy.

And once again I am reminded that this lifelong journey will always be bittersweet; the complicated grey.

After writing and talking with Chad I realize that mostly I am lonely and I need to do a better job with connecting rather than allowing my shame to disconnect me.

And I need to practice my shame resilience through writing, connecting and practicing my mothering.

But most of all, I need to honor and fight for myself by completely shattering the foggy darkness by speaking it.

I need to honor and fight for myself by

14 thoughts on “In the Quiet of a Holiday Weekend

  1. Laura says:

    I appreciate and feel this post from a different angle, but with similar feelings. We lost our first baby on Labor Day weekend. I went into labor at 16 weeks (talk about irony). As I travel the journey of moving “Ever Upward” I try to treat each of the dates of my lost babies as regular days. Stick to routines. Deal with my feelings as they come. It is impossible with a holiday weekend. There is always a lingering sadness on my heart while everyone else wants to make carefree plans. It makes this loss is a harder one to move past because there is such hype and chatter leading up to, during and after it. The dates of my other losses do not carry this importance and I find them much easier to deal with.
    I wish you continued peace in your journey.


    1. Laura, Thank you for reading and commenting with your story and light. Ugh, we were pain sisters this weekend. I know all too well those seared dates. Hoping this week feels lighter for both of us. Much love, Justine


  2. Hugs! There’s nothing like a holiday to make the shame and loneliness sneak in. If it means anything, I was a bit blindsided by it this weekend too. It is lonely. Ugh.

    Speaking of connecting, I’ll be in STL for a few days in April for a conference. I’d love to connect for dinner, drinks, whatever, if we can work it out.


    1. Hugs to you too!!! Ummmm, yes of course lets get together when you are in town!!! J


      1. Sweeeeet! I’ll shoot you an email once I get my travel plans sorted (which may not be until January sometime) and know the exact dates. You’ll be the first bloggie friend that I meet in person!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yes!!!!! Drop me an email at everupwardbook@gmail.com so we can exchange numbers! J


  3. anotherforty says:

    Holidays of any kind are tough, I’m sorry it didn’t work out how you had hoped. Thanks for speaking the truth, more people need to hear it.


    1. Thank you so much for reading and commenting!!!


  4. candidkay says:

    I hope you were able to sit in your own peace that weekend. It is hard, I think, when surrounded by those who have something or are something that makes you appear different. I felt this way on holidays after my divorce. It was either me and my two sons celebrating at a restaurant where all others seemed married.


    1. Yes! Much of the same feelings I am sure! Thank you, as always, for reading and commenting! Justine


  5. Janeen says:

    …….and the holidays. My daughter handed me her son and said she might be murdered and needed to go into hiding. That was over 10yrs. ago. She is my only child through adoption. Only grandchild. I felt the obligation to let my grandsons father know. He took the responsibility of my grandson reluctantly. He had a pregnant girlfriend. He is an abuser. Fast forward – both the parents to my grandson are incarcerated. My womb never carried a baby to full term. 41yrs of marriage. Holidays still ache for ‘what may have been’. Would my own birth child have been a felon? Would I have raised my birth child any differently? Was this my fault? So many unknowns. But grateful…..somehow I feel grateful that I could nurture and help the ‘other gramma’ raise our grandson! And she and I became friends!! A working/on-going miracle…….God’s WILL be done….praying every day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Janeen, Thank you for sharing your story here, it is beautiful and yet brutal. Those unknowns, the wonders will be with us forever I think. Much love to you, Justine


    2. Janeen says:

      Thank u.


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