Sparrow Life

The Major Players
November 16, 2012

This one's me... And I'd tell you about me, only to do that, I would have to know who I am, and I really don't anymore... I'm a wife, a mother, a daughter, an aunt. I was a sister and a convenience store manager, but circumstances beyond my control took those things away from me. Once upon a time I was trying to be a photographer, and an author, but the convenience store manager part of me took up so much of my life that I didn't have time for much else other than mother... Now that I'm not working anymore (at the moment, anyway) I'm trying to find myself again. Hence, the beginning of a new blog... a way to get back into some of the activities that used to be a part of me.

My husband. My second husband - proof to never say never. When my first marriage failed, I didn't think I could ever trust a man or my own judgement enough to get married again. I held onto a dead relationship for far too long between my first husband and Mark, I believe mostly because I was afraid to give someone who might actually want me a chance. In the middle of some of the craziest days of my life, I fell head over heels for Mark and threw all of my reservations out of the window. I gave it a shot and when our crazy life almost crushed us, I gave it another shot. Which is why I'm writing this today... Almost a year together, almost a month married, expecting a little girl... Due on my late sister's birthday. Mark is more than I could have asked for. He makes me feel like everything is going to be okay in a life that I know I never would have believed it without him. He works hard for us and he stood up to take care of children that mean the world to me that have no blood relation to him, not to mention my parents whose lives are completely out of control too. He's not perfect, but who is? He's amazing, and he's just what we needed.

My son... 9 years old in less than a week. More amazing than I ever could have imagined. I was an 18 year old Navy wife when he was born, living a couple of hundred miles from my family and everyone I knew. I jumped head first into raising this kid, and I did it alone a lot because of how demanding my ex-husband's job was, and I don't know how I did it. I don't know how much of the praise I deserve, but I have a wonderful, loving, sensitive, smart little boy that makes me proud every day, and I hope I can do as well with his baby sister.

My daughter... I never thought that I would say those words. When Jason and I were married, we tried hard to have a second baby, and after 4 years of trying and still nothing, our marriage fell apart. Then after two and a half years of relationships that were really nothing to be proud of, I had given up on the thought of starting over with anyone that would want a child... And then there was Mark. And now, in just a few months, there will be Paige.

The step-daughter I never knew... Born sleeping in July 2010. I know that she made my husband the man that he is today, and I am forever grateful to this perfect, tiny little dark-haired beauty for helping him become the man that is a father, step-father, uncle, and Papa to seven of the most important people in my life. I just wish he could have become that man with her here, on Earth, with us and her mother.

My big sister... I was pretty horrible to her on more occassions than I'd care to admit. Nine years older than me, we weren't very close growing up. We finally got to a point of closeness after my marriage failed and I moved back home. We got two years and seven months back together, and that's it. With no prior history of seizures, she left dart night in December 2011, driving alone, had a seizure, and crashed into a tree. She was killed instantly, leaving behind our next three players in my crazy life.

My nephew, Jamie's 15 year old son. Jake is incredibly dedicated to JROTC and the drill team. He's smart and funny and a little bit crazy. He's really talented in his art, and has actually already done tattoos. He has one, too, that he designed himself. He got it for his 14th birthday.

My only niece, Jamie's 11 year old daughter. Savanna is sweet and sensitive and hides it under the same tough exterior that her Momma demonstrated. She has the monster guilt gene that runs in the family - if you stubbed your toe on your own dresser in your own house three hundred miles away from her, she could probably find a way to blame herself; but she probably wouldn't tell you, she'd just get mad at herself and stomp around for a few hours and snap at anyone that spoke to her. 11 going on 16.

Jamie's baby boy, her last child, the nephew that I watched be born when I was five months pregnant with Will. 9 years old, Keenan is STUBBORN and hates schoolwork, but he's working hard to pull his grades up. We're working hard to pull his grades up. This child loves video games and he has been having a pretty hard time entertaining himself while he's been grounded from everything to pull those grades up. Actually, 3 out of 4 of the kids are grounded from pretty much everything for various reasons right now, and I'm loving it. I've never seen them get along so well, or play so many board games.

Mariah & Allen:
Mariah is the 16 year old daughter of one of Mark's exes, and with her father not playing a very big role in her life, Mark is more like one to her. Allen is HER one year old son. I'm not going to get into the story of how Allen came about, but let's just say that Mariah has overcome some pretty big obstacles in her life and she is an amazing mother. She loves her son so much, and there is no room for anyone to judge her for her life unless they are absolute saints... Because they honestly have no idea.

Mom (Ninnie):
My mom.... One of the strongest women I have ever known. My mother and my sister are the two most amazing women I've ever had in my life. In April 2010, my mother was diagnosed with stage 4 Inflammatory Breast Cancer with the HER2 protein - making it very difficult to treat. Seven months later we received the news that the cancer had spread into her spine, hips, and brain and that she had six months to live - best case scenario with aggressive treatment. So by May 2011 she was expected to be gone, and she's still fighting today. My mother is nothing short of amazing. It makes me angry for her that her life hasn't really been the best. I guess it's been full of love, but it's been full of far more loss than anyone should have to experience in an entire lifetime, much less 50-some years. Now she's not doing well at all, and I feel like things are coming to a close for her... Honestly, I think she's holding on for Paige, she did so well, and then things went downhill so quickly once we had our 19 week ultrasound and she knew she had a healthy granddaughter coming. I don't know how long we're going to have her now, but as angry as I am for all of her suffering, I am infinitely grateful for the time that we've had that we were told we never would - so far, an extra year and a half.

Dad (Daddy Max):
My dad... I don't know how much strength a man can have in reserve, but he must be holding out and using it just a tiny bit at a time. He's gone through so much hurt with all of us, and it's taken a toll on him, but he just keeps trucking on. I never thought it would ever end up just being me and him left out of our family of four I grew up in, but we're facing that, and we're just going to have to figure out how to live with it.

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