Monday, July 28, 2014

Desperation


It was strange having Eloril back after having him gone for a while. I hadn't realized when I sent my family away just how much I would miss them- even though I continued to believe my choice had been the best one. To have my brother back was incredibly comforting. Eloril's presence gave me the boost I so desperately needed in order to be able to go back to being on my own until his next visit. I was glad nana had been persistent about him still coming around. I had come to think that I knew pretty much all the answers and paths a situations could have, but in this case I was shown that there was still some thing about which nana knew best.

The one downer about Eloril's trip happened when we took a walk alongside the river. He had suggested we go closer to the water. I believed he merely wanted to enjoy the sounds of the quiet current, but the truth was that Eloril wanted to talk to me in an area more secluded. It was then that Eloril revealed to me how ada continued to be highly upset with me over me having banned him from visiting. Apparently, he had made a stance of not writing letters to me and not opening the letters I sent him in an attempt to persuade me to change my mind. As much as his decision hurt me, I knew they were because I had hurt him. However, I was adamant about not revoking my decision. I let Eloril know that. He had already figured that would be the case, and so he told me not to worry. He, nana, and I all understood it was impossible for ada to stay mad at me for long. We reasoned he wouldn't last a month before the guilt of ignoring his little Calenmir got to him and he was the one changing his mind.


Eloril hogged Minia the entire time he was around due to the fact that he would not get to see her for a long while once he left. He and she were almost permanently planted in the rocking chair I had finally been able to buy. With me only needing one crib in the room, there was the space for it where the other crib had been before. Minia loved the rocking motion, and Eloril loved any excuse to cuddle her. Using the chair somehow helped him to come up with a lot of great ideas as well. To quell ada's understandable frustration faster, he suggested we use paint to make a collage of all the children's hand prints that he could present to ada as a gift. I thought it was a wonderful idea. Isebrilia, Cugu, Anawen, Saviel, and even Minia loved getting their hands dirty to make it. Eloril and I decided to add our prints too.


Cugu had grown moody for a while. That he was surrounded by so many sisters was something he hated for a while. It was Saviel who broke through his barrier. Not only did the two become inseparable, Cugu also found that not having any brothers to share his things and room with was a great bonus to being the lone male in the house. Thus, his attitude toward Isebrilia and Anawen improved as well. Saviel always remained his favorite though. It was actually him asking if he could read bedtime stories to her, and not her asking him to read the stories. Some nights I became highly amused at Saviel when she just wanted to go to bed, but Cugu would bug her until she let him read a quick tale first.


I had to take many deep breaths to keep myself calm when my pregnancy manifested itself. There were moments where I felt composed. However, the moments where I was truly calm were reduced to zero when my bump started to show. I had slept with Mark on a relatively spur of the moment and rash decision. I debated a lot on whether or not I had been ready to deal with my second to last pregnancy. Minia was still so young. I could have waited longer. Then I realized I never would have been ready. There was no way to prepare myself for the end. I simply had to make it happen and hold on as best I could. So I kept doing what I could. Mostly I tried to stop getting my thoughts to repeat how there was only this child and one more left over and over again in my head.


Mully was there first thing in the morning for Minia's birthday. He hadn't been too happy when Eloril had been around for he loved to dote on his daughter. Thankfully, Mully was a considerate soul who realized Eloril needed to be a part of his niece's life as much as possible when he was around seeing as he wasn't going to be around often. I'm sure Mully grew very impatient though. To have him rush back over was no surprise. That he hogged Minia from me much like Eloril had done was no surprise either. I didn't have to do anything for my daughter other than feed her that day. She had to have her diaper changed as soon as her father arrived. He took care of it immediately without giving any sort of complaint. Then he spent the rest of the time playing with her and trying to teach Minia her first words. We were both a little disappointed that she did not inherit Mully's spectacular purple eyes, but he brought over plenty of outfits with purple on them to make up for that.


Ranna's youngest and only daughter, Ichelle, started visiting the house more often. This was due to Cugu's grades. Schoolwork and studying had never been his most favorite thing to do, and it was beginning to show in a bad way. Ichelle was his complete opposite in that manner. She had amazing grades and loved studying. It had been Ranna's idea to send her over after school to help Cugu finish his work and prepare for his tests. Isebrilia and Ichelle, who were great friends, would then hang out together afterwards.


However, the two would soon start seeing less of each other. Isebrilia did have to graduate high school at some point after all. With her dream of becoming a singer, she faced a lot of hard work that often kept her occupied. Even I had a hard time getting a hold of her sometimes. Isebrilia would always answers my calls back in the end though- no matter how tired she was. To hear her singing improve and improve and improve was something incredible to watch as well.


I began to hate that I had a lot of free time myself. It gave my already stressed mine too much time to think and get stressed out more. I needed to be kept busy otherwise I would start to panic. Me panicking would not be a good thing. My solution was to bring out the old stroller. Similar to how she enjoyed the rocking chair, Minia also loved taking strolls. This was a good thing for I could keep us out for hours while Cugu, Anawen, and Saviel were at school. The two of us truly discovered every nook and cranny in Riverview. The other residents began to expect our presence, and so I would often stop to have several chats along the way.


The weather grew warmer as the end of spring arrived. This time of year has forever been one of my favorites. The world still has the rush of liveliness due to the release of the snow and cold, but the true gentle warmth of just enough heat to keep everything comfortable and fresh. I had to say that Anawen and Saviel shared a sentiment similar to mine. They were outside playing together all the time. The swings were the favorite of both of them, but the also shared a fondness for the teeter-totter too.


Though to say so seems backwards, I began to hate it when Cugu's grades improved. Ichelle still came around often, but that was because I knew Ranna was behind it all and not because my son required tutoring. Ranna had steadily begun to send Dylan and Jeromy over our way as well. Cugu bonded well with his nephews, and Anawen and Ichelle became as close as Isebrilia and Ichelle had been. I would have been thrilled to have my grandchildren around more often had I not known why Ranna was making them come over so much. It had always been our plan since the triplets were born that I would take them in if both Ranna and Marty passed away before they graduated and became adults of their own. It was all too clear by my daughter's actions that she was trying to have her children get used to being at my house since they would be moving in shortly. I could hear the weakness in Ranna's voice. She was keeping her children blissfully unaware, but she couldn't fool me and she knew it.

I tried to keep Ichelle and her brothers away from the home phone as much as possible. It was always through the home phone and not my cell phone that the bad news came. In fact, it was rarely a good thing when the home phone rang. When I walked downstairs after tending to Minia to see Ichelle answering the it, I wanted to rush over and smack it out of her hand. If that was the news I feared, that phone call would be the last way I would want her to find out about her mother's death. Blessedly, Ranna had hardly passed away. It was actually her calling. Ichelle's own cell phone had died, and Ranna was calling to tell her to come home.


I gave birth to Elradith while the older children were at school and while Minia was visiting Mully. I went outside with her as soon as I was able for the same reason I had gone on so many walks with Minia. I needed the distraction. Elradith didn't appear to like the heat, but I could safely tell that she was another cheerful soul. She smiled at me with such happiness even so soon after her birth. I loved her as dearly as I had all my other children. I found joy in her like I had found joy in them. However, it was the most difficult thing to make myself be truly happy because of her birth. The tiny newborn who smiled up at me had no idea what her birth meant. She had no idea how much her arriving into the world filled me with dread. I hated that I had to feel so sad because of the fact that I knew very well how much Elradith's death would hurt due to how much I loved her.


Normally, I would have gotten annoyed at Cugu's guitar playing. His room was the closest to mine. Having the sounds of that strumming typically would have driven me crazy, especially when he first started practicing and wasn't that good. In this case though, his playing was yet another much welcomed distraction for me. The truth was that I became more annoyed when he took his guitar to the park to play for tips instead of remaining in his room. I did want my son to make out well in his endeavor, but I found myself cursing those who kept on tipping him so well as it caused him to play out at the park even more.


Saviel had a rough day one day. Her stomach had never been the strongest. She decided not to listen to me when we went to the festival and she chose to participate in the hot dog eating contest. To everyone's surprise, she won even though everyone was so much larger than her. However, poor Saviel paid the price for her victory by spending the rest of the afternoon over the toilet. I had to create a little bed for her around it, and cuddled with her on top of those blankets when her stomach momentarily settled so she could get a little rest.


It did eventually become a pain to have to be stuck in that bathroom for so long. It was the very next day though that had me wishing that, if I could just keep my children with me, that I would gladly deal with such things each and every day. I don't know how I knew that phone call would be the one. I heard the ringing start, and my body began to shake on its own. It got worse the closer I got to the phone. Unfortunately, I was the only one around to take the call. How I ever managed to get a grip on myself and pick up the receiver is beyond me. How I was able to stand there and listen to the horrible news that I had known was coming was more of a mystery. The pain of Ranna's death didn't sink in right away. I was in shock for a few hours. Emotionless, I went around preparing the house for Dylan, Jeromy, and Ichelle's arrival.


It was having them move in the next day that set me off. Ichelle cried nonstop, and Dylan and Jeromy were barely any better. It was heartbreaking to see how they refused to leave each others side as if they were afraid their siblings would vanish as well. I so desperately wished I could have changed it so that they weren't newly orphaned. I would have done anything to change the fact that those three had to see both their parents be buried before they had even graduated school. However, I couldn't do anything. I could hardly comfort them as I could barely comfort myself.


I could scarcely remember a time when it was rougher to cope with everything. I had prepared what I could, but suddenly taking in three more people was a challenge. It was a few days after the funeral when I went to the fridge for a comfort snack before bed to realize there was next to nothing in there. There was a little milk in a carton, a few grapes left in a bag, and half a dozen eggs. The cupboards were practically empty as well as I had been so consumed by my pain that I forgot do to any shopping. I didn't have a choice but to head out to the 24 hour store and make probably the biggest grocery purchase of my life. I tried to go to sleep after that, but rest wouldn't find me. I ended up back in the kitchen making meals out of what I had just bought so the children wouldn't have to forage for themselves. It was when I made six dishes when I thought I might be able to sleep. I only just reached the second floor when Elradith began screaming her head off. She needed a million things and then some. Her ruckus upset Minia as well. It was nearly time for me to be waking up by the time I started stumbling towards bed. My exhaustion thought the floor was a better bed. I sank to the ground and was staring at the ceiling before I knew what happened. Part of me seriously considered just going to sleep right there on the floor, but I forced myself to stand back up and get into bed proper.


The days did get better, but they did so slowly. I wouldn't say that they improved by leaps and bounds either. We all simply got used to living in the new situation before us. Well, the children got used to the situation. I could only struggle to keep my composure. I naturally loved Dylan, Jeromy, and Ichelle greatly, but their presence was an unending reminder of the pain in my chest. I was secretly glad they didn't have too much schooling left to complete. I suppose I was holding out better than I believed I was though. Enough time passed so that Elradith grew into a toddler and became a proper playmate for Minia. She inherited Mark's skin and eyes, my elven ears, and somehow ended up with the same fair hair shade that Anawen had as well.


I don't know what came over me when I thought it was the best idea to try to conceive for the last time. I think I was desperate. Ranna's death was hitting me hard. Not only was it her I craved to see again, but she was also the last of my children who had met Wesley- no matter how short a time that had been. Her dying also showed me how long it had been since I had lost him too. It had already been so many years since the person who had given me the greatest comfort I had known had died. I felt emptier and more alone than I could ever recall. The truth that if I conceived that the conception would be my very last flew right over my head for days. I only hoped having another child would give me the boost as the births of my children had done in the past. I was standing in Mr. Winston Finley's parlor the next afternoon. He had been the last one picked to help me.


It wasn't difficult to see my lack of enthusiasm didn't sit quite right with Mr. Finley. His attempts at conversation all failed miserably. I was honestly trying to talk to him properly, but I was starting to figure out that my heart wasn't in it. I should have called off our attempt right then and there. Instead, I let things progress to the bedroom. Everything felt wrong from the very second the clothes started to come off. I thought I could push through my negative feelings. I believed if I could just let things get started that I would fall into the pace like I had always done in the past. Neither happened. Through no fault of his own, every touch of Mr. Finley's felt cold. I grew more and more repulsed by the second. It had been so long since I had been disgusted by what I was doing, and I understood the blame was all on me. It didn't take a minute more before I realized I had made a massive mistake.


The rational thing to do would have been to calmly stop Mr. Finley's advances and explain to him what I was feeling. What I actually did was pretty much throw him off me, leap off the bed to start pulling my clothes back on, mumble a pathetic excuse of an apology and a promise to call later, and rush out the door leaving the poor man in a horrible stupor. I didn't stop running until I reached the safety of my bedroom back at home. Despite my children's attempts to coax me out, I remained perfectly still hidden under my covers until my mind could take it no more and I slipped off to sleep......

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