Monday, October 17

whiplash

These last few hours before the midnight seem to always be when I get my writing in, whenever I actually get some in that is. The sink is full of dishes, and there are several piles of unfolded laundry around me. There are open backpacks, books, legos, ripped papers, lonely socks, an empty cup, barbies, a fuzzy hat, and other odds and ends on the floor, with a Mrs. potato head ear sitting on the coffee table, and yet here I go. My heart is pounding as it does so easily these days, and my hands are shaking slightly. I feel chilled and hot all at once, and my head is aching right behind my eyes. My fear is kicking in, and yet here I go.
I don't really have any messages of motivation or inspiration to share with you today, I just know that I have to type. I don't really have any dreams or goals for the week either beyond making my children laugh as much as possible, and letting the last of the warm sun shine on my face.

I tell myself that I want/need to keep working as much as I can, but I'm still dealing with so many mental blocks that it's been kinda tough to put my thoughts together, so thank you for your patience with the whiplash of ups and downs that have become so consistent in my posts. That's my life now after all:) There have been many days when I smile so big my cheeks hurt, and my heart feels light like it hasn't felt in so long, and then there are other days I feel the crushing grasp of heartache that pulls its big dark cape around me and shuts out the light.

This last weekend was nice in many ways, but also an especially hard one to get through with another anniversary of my dear Martin's passing bringing up many more memories and emotions, both sweet and incredibly painful. I miss him so much. I'm so grateful for every photo and video that we have of that beautiful life, which feels like it's a world away now. Every birthday smile captured, every cartoon snuggle pile, each moment preserved and helping to create memories for the little ones as they grow up. I'm also grateful that I finally broke down and took some photos of last six months where he really changed mentally and physically. Ellie seems the most aware of the whole situation as she is the oldest, and seemingly more mature than what most expect of her little 6 year old self. She usually wants to see those last photos, and the pictures from the funeral. She says it helps her to remember how much he was hurting, and to be happier that now he's not hurting anymore. All of these photos will be especially important for the rest of the kiddies to see our life together before his passing, when they're old enough to listen and understand. To know how much he loved them, and how we know we'll see him again someday.

I so wish you were sitting right here on the couch beside me. I wish I could see your face and hear your voice, and that we could really properly talk about things. You'd see the juice spills on my shirt and the wrinkles by my eyes, and we'd talk about sleep schedules or oreo thins, or how your kids are liking school. I'd probably pull a couple half eaten pints of ice cream out of the freezer and offer you a spoon. I'd ask you about your hobbies and your family, what you want to do in the future, and I'd ask you if there was anything you wanted to know about me.

I have many more deep and heavy thoughts to share here, just as I already have so many sweet moments of new beginnings and hope that I can't wait to pass along. Yes, I'll be posting hair tutorials and outfit posts and silly Friday Finds again someday, perhaps shortly, but I won't be taking a poll to see when everyone else feels it's ok for me to do that. I also have plans to have Richard share some thoughts here pretty soon, so be on the lookout for some of his words and insight popping up in the future:)

Wrapping up this train of thoughts as best I can, I guess I just want to convey that there's really no right balance of what to share or not to share here. There's no protocol for situations like mine. With so many many of you reading and with everyone wanting different things, and with so many different opinions and beliefs, I really have to just share what I feel is important to me in the moment, for this online space of mine. It's always been the goal of this blog to uplift and inspire by sharing little snippets of my life through things I'm learning or loving, but that's all they are - snippets. If you like what you see, let me know:) If there's more you want to be shared, feel free to ask for it. If there's something you're seeing or reading here that you'd rather not, the internet is a beautifully vast canvas with many different views able to cater to your own personal fulfillment and happiness.

For me, all I can do now is to try and share both sides of the spectrum moving forward. Mostly that will mean passing on all the happiness and positivity that I can muster, with every now and then letting myself dig deeper to write about the darkest moments of heartache, when I feel the need to. Because while I know this is my space to share what I feel, I also think of all you friends and family following along, and I'm always hoping that the messages and stories shared will be things that will benefit others in at least some small way. That's all I can really hope for.

Well that's it for tonight I think. Thank you thank you for always trusting and supporting me, and for staying with me, whiplash and all. ♡

67 comments:

  1. You're the strongest Emily, sending loads of love xxx

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  2. I think the few hours before midnight are when all mom's get anything done! Then we tend to regret it the next day when our sleep seemed too short. Keep writing whatever you feel. We will keep loving it. Keep going Momma you have got this. Highs and lows are what give us empathy and compassion for others. We are just blessed to be able to follow along with what you choose to share.

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  3. Hang in there, you're doing great. And you're allowed to write about whatever you want, whenever you want ❤️ Whether you realize it or not, your encouragement shines through in the bright or dark posts.
    Love the pictures you included in this post. How amazing that because of this huge support group you have, your husband will never truly be forgotten.

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  4. Emily, I cried reading this post. You are beyond strong, I admire you so much , I always have since discovering your blog and now even more so. I have recently gone through breast cancer and I know how gruelling cancer treatment can be.
    There are no words to make this better. I just wish you happiness for the future and glad you had that time together to make amazing children and memories.
    All my love Hayley x
    www.hayley-sarah.blogspot.com.au

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  5. Don't know what to say because I have no words for it. So a big big hug for you and your beautiful family. <3

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  6. This is so touching Emily. Loss brings some, many, hard moments but I've also really felt the blessings and love of close ones once they've gone. I hope you and your little ones are left with all the sweetness and new blessings.

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  7. Emily, I love hearing you words, both positive and not. Life is not all happy or sad, all uplifting or heavy, and I know that having the space to share your inner thoughts can be a wonderful thing. I'd like to think no one can read one happy post and say "she is so happy now, no sadness is left!", or read one sad post and think "her life is so depressing." There are so many nuances to how we all live our days and you have experienced some that are especially trying and for most, unimaginable. I for one am happy to read ALL your posts, the happy and the sad, because I think it makes YOU feel good to write them and it makes me feel happy to think you are thriving in the best way you can.

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  8. This is your site, you should post what you want to post :) We still pray for you and your family often. You inspire me!

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  9. Hi Emily,

    Hope you are well, whiplash and all :) I've been through what you are going through and I'm glad you have Richard there to support you. There really is no handbook/guide for this, regardless, I feel you are doing great in uplifting all who read your words.

    Anything you write is cool with me, this is your life, your blog. For you to document your journey, be as real as you feel is right.
    Sending my love from Kenya.
    (formerly homeward bound)

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  10. Oh Emily. We've never met, but from reading your blogs, watching you on YouTube and Pariscope, and seeing you in my Instagram/Facebook feeds over the past few years, I feel like I know you. I left a comment on one of your YouTube videos when Martin was sick. You responded that you wished you could give me a big hug. �� My heart broke when finding out about Martin's diagnosis. I cheered as you and your love fought with every ounce of strength to win the battle over cancer, and I mourned once I realized he would go home to the Lord much earlier than we would like to think he should have. The photos of the funeral wrecked me, but in a beautiful way. I've missed seeing your frequent posts, but am glad you took some time away. You and your littles are in my thoughts and prayers often. When you posted about Richard, my heart erupted with joy. I've read some of the heartbreaking comments others have left about it being too soon to find love, but hold your head high lovely one. YOU are the ONLY one who gets to have a say in it. Others may say that they feel a year is needed, or some other predetermined amount of time, before venturing out into the dating world again, but I trust that you did the right thing. Some people also would have said that having five babies so close together (and when you are so young) was a bad idea, but it was right for you and Martin. �� I am so thankful that God brought Richard back into your life when he did. ����. I honestly believe that Martin would have wanted it that way. Flush any and all negative comments down the toilet and cling to truth. Hold onto those who believe in you - we can help you get through anything. �� Blessings to you and your family. I can't wait to get to know Richard when you two are ready. ����

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  11. sending love, keep doing what you need to do

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  12. I wish I could give you a big hug! You don't owe anyone here anything, but I look forward to posts, even if they aren't how you want them to be. They are real, raw and what they need to be right now. Sending love your way!

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  13. I checked into your blog earlier this evening (in Aus) on the off chance you'd posted anything new. I read this post whilst sitting in my youngest daughter's room while she drifted off to sleep, as I do every evening. I've left the post open for a few hours now knowing I wanted to comment but unsure of what I wanted to say. Essentially what I want to say is that I think both you and Richard are so brave and courageous, individually and as a pair. To be navigating such uncharted waters, finding a new normal for yourselves and the kids.
    You are brave, you are strong, you are beautiful, real and honest. You put yourself out there and you are resenating in so many lives, helping people better understand things in their own life, helping people heal, giving others a sense of validation who may be going through something similar, teaching other's to look beyond a picture perfect snap shot to look deeper than an initial judgement or assumption. You're real and that's not always easy to find in people.
    One day at a time, baby steps or giant leaps, whatever fits for you and the family. xx

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  14. I don't know you. But I love you and my heart aches for you and is overjoyed for you all at the same time. I hope you can find comfort in posting. I also hope you can feel supported no matter what you post. There are many of us who will continue to be here no matter what you post or how frequent or infrequent it is. Take things at the pace that is comfortable for you. LOVE YOU!!

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  15. Your endurance, motivation, and wisdom are an inspiration to me. When I read that list about what you wanted to do before the end of the summer, I thought that there was no way you could check everything off, but you DID! It inspired me not to give up when I think that there is too much to do. There is time to have fun! Thank you for writing and letting us read about you and your family. And when you can't pull any more strength remember, "the joy of the LORD is your strength."
    (Nehemiah 8:10)

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  16. I love the honesty in your posts, Emily. I follow your blog for many reasons, but that is probably the biggest one. Always looking forward to your posts!

    Bella Pummarola

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  17. Emily, oh how I wish we were friends! You don't know me, and I only know the bit of you that you bring to the blog, but I so appreciate your posts. And despite not knowing each other, I feel so proud of you. Grief is such a hard thing to walk through, and your authenticity just warms my heart. If I could, I would totally take you up on that ice cream :)

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  18. Beautiful!!!!!!

    With Love,
    Summer

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  19. You find your happy & you grab hold of it & don't let go. No one gets to live your life but you. No one gets to make choices that affect your life but you. Don't let the people who voice disagreement with what you choose to do, have power over your happiness.

    You are allowed to smile, laugh, move on, cry, wallow, miss the past, look forward to the future. YOU ARE ALLOWED TO LIVE. Live it the best way you know how and do it without regrets. You've got this.

    Much love always.

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  20. Emily, I love reading blogs, but I don't tend to comment on them too much. But I wanted to say I just love you. Your spirit and soul just seems so amazing. And I agree with everything you wrote above. Whatever you want to write about, we are here to listen and share. I think you are doing a wonderful job balancing everything. Your writing makes me feel less alone in the world, so thank you.

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  21. I know it's probably hard for you to put yourself out there and subject yourself to criticisms regarding your choices, your decisions, etc. I think it's brave of you and I think that, once you've pulled the figurative band-aid off and share the story of you and Richard and how it all came to be; how Martin's family accepted Richard and your decision, that you will feel so much better and you'll be able to move on from the "whys and what ifs" that people of differing opinions and beliefs have been expressing. It's your story, not everyone has to like it.

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  22. I listened to the podcast you were on recently and my heart just broke open for you and your family. Not in the pity way, in the way where you start to get just a little more of a story so full of love that heartache is inevitable. Thank you so much for sharing, I have gained so much from reading and hearing about your story, and your real life bravery. Nothing is owed to any of us that show up here, I think it's so beautiful the way you share.

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  23. Continuing to keep your family in my thoughts, Emily. I'm glad to read your family captures smiles mingled with the memories. Wishing you all the best. When you're ready, we'll be excited to see what the future has in store for you and The Freckled Fox.

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  24. Just do you, however you see fit. That's why we keep coming back to your little corner of the Internet---because we want to see you exactly as you are, without needing to hesitate or explain yourself or ask for permission. We love you for you, in the hard and in the bright and in all the in-between.

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  25. Oh Emily, you do you. This is your blog that we all follow. If you want to post hair videos, do that. If you want to share some of the rays of sunshine that you've been blessed to find in the midst of the grief, then do that. And if you need to just pour your heart out and grieve, then do that too. Followers who have hateful things to say can find another blog to criticize.

    Grief and loss are so strange. Life can move forward and you think you are okay and then you're thrown back unexpectedly into that crushing darkness and it feels like you're drowning in it. So post the dark, solemn posts and post the bright new sunshine posts. And post the hair posts and whatever clothing articles you want to post. And we will be here, crying along with you, smiling with you because you've found some sunshine in the midst of the darkness, and trying in vain to perform those amazing updo's that you clearly have mastered.

    I was in Boise this past weekend, and I thought how nice it would be to have looked you up and just been able to give you an encouraging hug. Wishing you peace today.

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  26. You don't have to explain yourself to us. (: Post what you want to post. I know that I'm just happy to hear from you. whether it's a light-hearted recipe or your midnight thoughts, I appreciate it all.

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  27. First, I had tears in my eyes as I read about the clutter in your house - it is all so "normal" and yet what you are trudging through is anything but. I try to envision myself in your shoes, with my 4 littles 4 and under, vacillating between wanting to move forward and wanting to go back; trying to make life "normal" for the kids but not knowing what that actually means anymore. Second, it sounds from what you had to say that you are getting many opinions (to put it politely). Good for you for standing firm and following your heart with your writing. For those who have also suffered a loss, I imagine your words make them feel less alone. For those of us who have not, your words are heartbreaking and acts as a lens to view our own marriages with that much more tenderness. You are a blessing to many and you and your beautiful family are in my prayers.

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  28. Just a teeny little practical tip: when I'm wanting a boost, I go to aholyexperience.com and look at the archives for multivitamins for your week. So uplifting and energizing. So much diversity, color, and dance(often literally).

    I also go to another little space known as Freckled Fox sometimes. There's always sweetness and hope there. :)

    Praying that you and yours will have peace and joy from Jesus. I good especially that your big little girl knows He took the greatest pain that we might be free of it one day.

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  29. You are an amazing woman! I know Martin would be awed all the more by you right now as you navigate these difficult waters of grief and new beginnings. I hope that you have peace and assurance and happiness.

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  30. Sending love to you and your sweet family Emily, and continuing to pray for you.

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  31. I think so many of us are here because no matter what you face you overcome - even if you're tired and aren't inspiring all of us, as you have so many times before, we're still here! Maybe it's our turn. I think you could share whatever you're feeling and hopefully no one has the disrespect to say anything to you other than an encouraging word.
    I know you don't know me from Adam. I've wanted to write you so many times, but never knew what to say because it all seemed insignificant and also felt stalkerish. But today I am writing, and I want to tell you, I may have never met you and sometimes think its crazy how emotionally attached I am to your life but reading comments I see I'm not alone: I have spent so much time praying and interceding for your family and I will not stop.
    I lost a very dear friend at 34 years old in January. It was completely unexpected. We had just gotten out of an amazing church service and she collapsed. We found out she had a blood clot in her lung. Though we don't understand what He's doing I can testify and say I have seen miracles and amazing things happen since her passing. I'd like to think these things could have happened and us still have her - but I remind myself often that she got the better end of the deal. She is in heaven dancing on streets of gold.
    I hope that you don't feel like you have to apologize for posting about your life. You have been an encouragement time and time again - let us be here for you!

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  32. You are doing positively perfect ♥ All I want is for you to share what you feel needs to be shared. If it is the right time for you, then it is the right time for us. I know that we have never met nor have we truly talked, but I think about you and your family often. I constantly hope for your happiness because you and your gorgeous kids deserve the best ♥

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  33. Emily do you know that I literally check your IG/blog daily for updates? I think of you & your babies everyday! I truly hope you keep sharing & continue to find peace & that God continue to guide you:). I adore you! Big hugs!!

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  34. I love this and you. Take a deep breath and welcome tomorrow with open arms. Your family is so blessed to have you and we are lucky you choose to share with us. Thank you ❤️

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  35. Dear Emily, I live in Sweden, a world apart from where you live, but since I found your blog, I've found so much new inspiration!
    My heart breaks for you and the things you and your sweet babies have had to endure, but the way you write and handle all of this is breathtaking. You are truly a beautiful soul with the ability to touch so many people with your words and actions.
    I just wanted to leave a comment here, since I never did before, because I want you to know that you touch the soul and spirit of people who don't know you, who don't even live in the same country as you. I am a world apart, but still you inspire me through this wonderful blog.
    Love, Annica

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  36. You are so amazing and I love reading your blog posts, no matter what you say or choose to talk about. It's a blessing to learn about you and the life that you choose to share with us, because it may be helping someone in a similar situation. I pray for you daily!

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  37. You are wise to allow yourself the grief. I will be honest and say that I was really taken back when you revealed your new marriage, not that it's a strangers business at all. My thoughts were not that you shouldn't move on, but that it was so very soon after losing Martin and you had so much grief yet to get through. However, you are still allowing the grief to come and sit with you, I'm sure it still never really leaves you. And it's great that your new husband understands and gives you the space to do so. You're doing a beautiful job of raising your children and keeping their fathers memory alive, while provided a new balance, reaching for the future. Good for you -

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  38. Gosh, Emily, you should post what feel good and right to you. We're just along for the ride. The way you have handled what life has dealt--both the good and the heartache--is jaw dropping and inspiring. Thank you for sharing. I hope I can approach challenges with a sliver
    of the grace you have shown.

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  39. My Sweetest Emily please go at your own pace on blogging and only share what feels right for you. We are here for you when you are ready and go slow as you need to. Much love and more hugs than you can handle.
    Lana ������

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  40. Hey Emily! I'm so in love with you! Really! You're the best bloger I've ever read. I went through your posts and i love your family, your kids, your power, your goodness, kindness. You're so big inspiration for me. I wish you and yours all the best.

    Ps. I would love to read something more about your home-birth :)

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  41. Emily, you have been amazing, I admire your strength and self confidence in sharing everything that you have over the past 2 years that I've been following you. Take your time in processing everything you are your family have been through, and don't take any negative comments to heart. I'll admit to being shocked when you announced your new marriage, but I'm looking forward to learning more about your story and possibly hearing from him directly. It's certainly unfair of anyone to judge without knowing more. Being a therapist who specializes in treating trauma, I'm also looking forward to hearing more about what makes you so resilient despite the level of heartbreak you've had to endure. So basically, I'll continue checking this site often for anything you are willing to share. But take your time, go at your own pace, and pay no mind to any negativity that comes from it.

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  42. Keep sharing what you feel is right when you feel it's right. I have never been through what you're going through and I pray to God that I don't. Just know that there are people here cheering you, Richard and your precious littles on! We are for you. In the dark times and in happy times. May God continually pour our his blessing on you and you littles. May your heart be healed and happy. I pray that He turn your mourning into dancing and your sorrow to joy> God bless your family. : )

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  43. You are awesome. I'd love to come sit with you and grab a spoon for ice cream!!:) Just wnt you to know how much you've inspired me, and how happy I am that you have a Richard now. I think you are incredibly strong, and I admire your positive outlook!!!

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  44. I just love learning about how you perceive the world. Looking through your eyes, everything is a little more beautiful. Your insights are inspiring and make me want to be a better person. I think most of us just want the best for you, and I think of you and your family often, even though we've never met. Thanks for sharing with me :)

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  45. Emily! I'm a new follower to your blog, and I absolutely love you! You are so real and inspiring and I am always hoping you'll post more often!
    I understand you are going through a hard time, and I agree with the others that you should take it at your own speed, and try not to worry about us! I'm sure it's really hard with all the decisions you are making for you and your family as it is, just trying to get through every day as best as you can. I can't even imagine the stress you feel with all that PLUS a bunch of meanies (and also many supporters!) watching and following you through social media and such.
    You are amazing and strong! You are so beautiful and I think a lot of women would love to learn more from you! Keep your head up, and know that I (as well as many others) support you and love you!

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  46. Just write what your heart tells you to, when you want to, and concentrate on what feels right for yourself and your family. Your fellow mamas are cheering you on as you find your way. ❤

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  47. Emily your post brings tears to my eyes. You are doing great! I love those sweet pictures of Martin warms my heart! I am proud of you for posting this. You should never feel like you have to appease us and post what we want! This is your outlet and blog after all 😀 Your family is constantly in our prayers!

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  48. It's YOUR blog eventually. You do it for YOU :) And we'll be here supporting - always :) Big hugs from halfway around the world :) xxx

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  49. You are an amazing writer. Your words always feel like you're in the room while I'm reading them, it's an incredible talent you've got there.


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  50. Thank you so much for being so honest. My heart explodes with compassion at every word you are willing to share. Sending huge love your way <3

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  51. I love this post. I know you are a bit of a private person, but I like when you share a little glimpse of how you're feeling. Your blog is so pretty though and you're good at sharing the moments of beauty and inspiration, too. Wishing you healing.

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  52. I hope you are writing a book of all the stuff you are keeping to yourself. And I hope someday you won't care about what anyone thinks, but will embrace that the truth of what is happening to you has happened to millions and they have to deal with it by themself, inside their head. Your story will help countless women, and probably men....

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  53. You are such a beautiful soul Emily. Share whatever is on your heart as you navigate this journey. Hopefully it will be cathartic and soothing. Wishing you every comfort and peace as you grow in this new chapter of your life ❤️

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  54. You are incredible and your bravery and strength has already helped countless others. People read your story because it's a beautiful one, sorrow, heartache and all. I pray you continue to share and more than anything, share what is helpful for you. You so clearly put others before yourself, but please know it's okay to put yourself first at times; share what you need to share and keep to yourself what is just for you. Keep writing and know you are supported by many!

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  55. You have an amazing way of communicating your emotions in writing. When you say that "there are other days I feel the crushing grasp of heartache that pulls its big dark cape around me and shuts out the light", I can really get a taste of what you are feeling. Thank you so much for sharing your life and your heart.

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  56. Write what is written in your heart. ❤️ Sending love and strength and peace your way.

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  57. With tears in my eyes I send you all my love sweet Emily!!!! ❤

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  58. "With so many many of you reading and with everyone wanting different things, and with so many different opinions and beliefs, I really have to just share what I feel is important to me in the moment..." >> And THAT is why we'll keep reading, sweet Emily. Yes, do post whatever WHENever. We don't require anything, though I'm personally glad you've chosen to disclose as much as you already have and I'm excited for what's next (whenever you're ready). XO.

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  59. I've been loving your posts. And I want you to know that I understand in... a parallel sort of way? In August we lost our two year old Great Dane. He ran out in front of a truck and it was horrific, unexpected (of course), and in the course of one morning we had to rush him to the vet, find out he couldn't be helped, and put him down. Worst. Day. Of. My. Life. He was like our child, as we have no human children yet. As you can imagine, a Great Dane is a large, almost human like presence in your home. Having wanted two, we started looking the next week and found a puppy with the same lineage and knew that we needed to get him. Fast forward to now where I go, at most, a day without crying about Steel, but usually cry every day... so there's still a lot of heartache and maybe even a little PTSD happening over here in my heart and head. But then, I get to cuddle that new little puppy Rebel, or watch him bounce around the yard chasing leaves, or snuggling with the kitten and - a different spot in my heart is filled with joy. I, too, struggle with how often to mention Steel on my blog - he was always in my blog in the first place - but how often do my readers want to be brought down that spiral of sadness with me? But, I know that it helps me to write about, think about, and talk about him. So, I do.

    So, have no fear - you are not the only one with the whiplash ;) And I will always love your posts!
    Katy @ Plays Well With Coffee

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  60. Allow yourself some time and some grace. What you're going through with your family is anything but normal and there is no right or wrong way to grieve. You just have to put one foot in front of the other no matter what and keep showing up for your babies. Some days will be bad and some days will be good and that's OK.

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  61. Love and big hugs from Germany.

    Your words are breathtaking, heartshaking and so alive, so real, so touching.

    Your'e such a strong woman with so many lovable facets.

    Those that we love never truly leave us.
    There are things that death cannot touch.
    Paint. And Memory... And Love.

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  62. As if you have any time for books, but----Through the Eyes of a Lion by Levi Lusko could help you through this. It has been a major encouragement to thousands!!! God bless your family and bring you peace...

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  63. I find my self reading your posts over and over. I can't help but think about all you have been through the past few years. The ups and downs, the emotions just all of it. What a roller coaster, literally! I wish I could hug you and come have play dates with your kiddies! I told my hubby about your sweet Martin and he has been so upset about it....More than I thought, actually. He said he wished you guys were close so we could do more to help, play with the girls and play tball or sports with you're one and only sweet boy. Just simply be there for you guys. I know the Lord blessed you with Richard but I know this has got to be such a hard thing to experience. You are so strong momma. Sending you so so so much love from Houston!!

    God bless
    Sheridan

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  64. Emily,

    I imagine you probably won't get to my comment and that's ok, but in the event that you do, I wanted to share how much I appreciate and respect you for sharing with us. I've followed your blog for something like 4 years I think and I feel like we are old friends. I've watched your story unfold and felt my heart break when Martin was diagnosed, I cried for you and your babies when he passed, and I smiled for you when you first shared about Richard. Only you know what is right for you and we are all just along for the ride. Your choices are yours and as friends do, we respect those choices even if they are not the decisions we would make for ourselves. Friends don't always have to agree; it's the uncompromising love and respect we have for each other through it all that binds us.

    I wish you and your family the greatest happiness and I thank you for sharing your journey with untold numbers of strangers. If nothing else, know you have a friend here in Indiana. I look forward to following your story as it continues to unfold.

    Xoxo,
    Colleen

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  65. Such beautiful words. This is your space, to write what you feel. And it's not for anyone else to tell you what is and isn't okay. I love this space though. It's beautiful. It's inspiring. I think it's perfect.

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