I've Been Missing

Sorry guys, didn't mean to worry you. The last couple weeks have been supremely busy. I had some 1/6 widsters stay with me last week and the memorial was this weekend. The week before that was probably not "busy" my mind has just been so cluttered.

Shit's gotten real. There's no other way I can put it. Hold on, before I go there, let me back track.

Widster time was pretty nice. We laughed together, cried together. Shared our notification stories. I got to show my videos of my babe, read my notes... we looked at pictures. We drank some alcohol some nights and didn't other nights and hung out and just enjoyed being in the company of others who "get it."
We prepared together for a weekend that would make everything a bit more real, a bit more final. And that is exactly what it did.

We had a memorial dinner. The battalion gave us spouses Eagle, Globe and Anchor necklaces. They are beautiful but of course I cried upon unwrapping and discovering what it was. I also cried in the middle of dinner because there were 10 guys who should have been sitting there with us. 10 guys we all miss so much that we wish we didn't have to have that dinner in the first place. Silent tears, but tears none the less. Jonny's CO talked to me a little about the accident, but he couldn't give me much info because he wasn't there that night.
A guy that was in the truck behind his gave me details from that perspective earlier on in the week and also a photo. No, I hadn't asked for the photo, I wasn't expecting it, he brought some other photos and that one took me completely by surprise. He was trying to help. I think they understand we want all the details of our husbands last moments, but a photo was definitely not something I was searching for. Can't blame him though, but it certainly sucked.

Friday was the memorial. It was basically the hottest day of the year and I thought I was just going to melt into the ground at any given moment. There were several moments I wish I could have... It was tough. I sobbed. I could say it was harder than the funeral events, but I don't really remember them. I say I think it was harder though, because it was real. All the guys were there except the ones we were wishing so hard for to be there. And now that the period I call the "fog" has lifted, it definitely felt more real than anything. Four months out and it is finally hitting me - he is not coming home to me. Ever. Reality fucking blows (I think I've said that before).
It was beautifully done though. Many people had nice things to say and paid their respects to Jonny's field cross. I had thought of getting a sitter for Ariana but I decided against it. I want to tell her when she is older that she was a part of everything. She came to every single event for her dad and was never left out.

After the memorial was a luncheon at the O Club. It was really nice and the food was tasty, a few friends and I joked that we could get used to eating there. The battalion had these really nice pencil sketches done of each of the guys which they presented to us there, along with dog tags and a folded flag. This was a flag that was flown in Marjah on Memorial Day for all of the fallen angels of 1/6. They also gave us a little certificate that had said a few things but the line I remember most is "This flag was flown in the face of the enemy..." I find this flag incredibly special. Then the CO that was in the truck during the accident sat down and talked with Jonny's mom and I, told us what happened basically step by step. It was so hard to hear and I'm not going to get into details on here but it's definitely a conversation I will probably never forget - at least not certain details of it. There are still things I just don't get - I probably never will.

I got a migraine Friday night after it was done and worked through it with no meds. Ok, that's a little lie, I did take an Exedrine (which typically doesn't even touch the edges of my migraines) after the numbness and vision issues were over. Then I slept off the rest. It was a physically and emotionally exhausting weekend and I feel like I could sleep for months... years. If only I had that option.

I know this post is pretty erratic, but I'm tired and there was just so much going on. I'm so sad. Everything is so real and so final. I spent some time reading old posts from my blogs I had before this one. I was so full of hope. I just knew that our life together would be long. It would difficult, but I knew that it would be a long one. Filled with trials and tribulations that I was ready to take head on.

Staff Sergeant said in his speech about Jonny that when they got home from their training in California he met me and I was "in full control." I only wish I could say that now. Everything is out of control, and there is nothing I can do about it. Nothing, absolutely nothing, will change this. I am stuck. I am stuck here living without the one person who made my life complete. And I fucking hate it! I hate it.

I just don't think people get how much I love him. And how empty and lonely and sad I am without him. We had hopes and dreams and a future. We had the world in front of us. And this is not fair. It's just not fair. He should be here, he should be helping me raise Ariana, spending time with her, with us. Holding her, holding me. I hate seeing families together because mine will never, ever be complete. Wanna tell me that I'll probably find love again? Maybe I will. Maybe I won't. But either way, my family and my heart will never be complete because the one thing I loved most in this world, the one person who made my life truly worth living is gone. Now, it's Ariana. She makes my life worth living. But I'm so sad. I'm so, so very sad without him.

I want to be happy and I do what I can to appear that way on most days but it just seems after all this memorial stuff, the finality of it all, I've just hit a very low point. That point where you just want to curl up in a hole. Curl up and wait. For the inevitable. To see him again. But I CAN'T! I do not have that option. And that, to me, isn't fair either. I don't want to be a broken mother for my daughter but sometimes I'm afraid that's all I can give her. I can't give her her father and I don't know how much of me is left. I don't even feel like me anymore. I will give her everything that I have left though, I can promise her that. I will give her anything that remains here, but lately thinking about it, I'm not sure how much that is. They say that time heals all wounds but I know I'll never be perfectly healed. I just hope over time there's more of me to give. I promise to always do my best and always be the best mom I can but I'm terrified that it's not going to be good enough. What if time gets unbearable? I see time as a very scary thing. Over time, I will realize it's been longer and longer and longer since I've seen him. I'm afraid he will fade and I will begin to fade with him. I guess I've got to remain hopeful that I will gain strength, somewhere. I pray that he will continue to give me strength and he will never let himself fade. And I know that Ariana will give me strength and I will always have him in her, and I will always tell her of him. But what if that's not enough?

We can play what if's all day, but no one has the answers. I suppose all that's left to do is jump in head first and do my best. My very, very best. I just pray my best is good enough. And I pray one day it doesn't hurt as bad, because right now, it's killer. I've never hurt so bad in my life.

There's a thousand more things I want to talk about, but I'm drained and I'm not making any sense. Way to go on the super depressing post after being MIA so long... sorry guys, it's all I've got right now...

329 comments

  1. I pray it gets better for you and Ari, I was crying right with you throughout the post. Can't imagine the pain and loss you feel, but as a fellow Marine wife you are in my thoughts.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am soooo sorry for everything you are going through. I can only imagine how hard this is for you but also for having to be strong for your daughter. It is completely normal to be depressed and fine through this process. You have your family and lots of people who are hear to talk to and support you. I really believe that those that have past are here for us helping us along this journey without them. Jonny is there and your heavenly father is always there for you too! I always find comfort knowing that even how helpless or alone I am at the time I can always talk to him and find some comfort and peace. Good luck in the next few months sweetie!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, Honey! There are no words that I can say to tell you how truly sorry I am that you even had to endure any of that. I am here for you. I think after all you've been through you're allowed to not make sense sometimes. Go get the rest you need and know that I'm always here. As well as so many others. Take care of yourself and your sweet little girl!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Mrs. P,

    Please don't ever feel you need to appologize for your post being sad. This blog is about you and about Johnny and I love the strength that you show in blogging. Thank you for being so vulnerable and allowing us to share in your grief, but also share in your recovery. I can tell that blogging is very therapeutic for you so don't worry about the sad posts, they are just as honorable to Johnny as the up beat ones. Keep up the good fight and stay strong. The support for you and Ariana is huge.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Mrs. P-
    This wasn't depressing, it is the truth you are living right now. We are privileged to follow your journey. Your honesty is heartbreaking. Your journey is your own and no one can say a damn word to you about it. You will learn to manage your new, unwanted life but it isn't time that does it, but healing. Take YOUR time. Your thoughts have taught me something unspeakable. I am always thinking of the families of the angel soldiers. Thank you for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I think you're allowed to be depressing in your posts. Considering all that's going on in your life, I think it's ok. I'm sure you're sick of hearing it by now, but I honestly can't imagine what you deal with every day. (((hugs)))

    That said, our guest speaker at church today shared a message I think you'll find relevant. He basically stated that [if we know and have a relationship with God], life doesn't end for us! Death is just an inconvenient step in our eternal life. We may lose our loved ones here, and yes it will most definitely suck and be difficult, but we WILL see them again. And when we see them, we'll be in such a wonderful place that the circumstances in which we got there won't even matter anymore. I know we have no idea when we'll see our loved ones again, but at I hope you can rest knowing that he's safe and sound in God's arms, waiting and rooting for you.

    The message came from John 11, if you're interested in reading it.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I can't even begin to know what you feel... but every single time I read your blog, I end up bawling. Call me a glutton for punishment, but I read your blog a lot.

    ReplyDelete
  8. You are such an amazing person. I can't imagine how hard it must be to want to curl up & not move, but having to keep going because you have a little life depending on you. You will gain strength, you're right time may never heal your wounds completely but you're so strong you will make it through this.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm glad the battalion did their part in paying their respects and honoring your husbands. I'm not sure why someone would show you pictures, though. I can't imagine what his thought process was. I suppose he thought he was helping, but yikes...bad call.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Life is not fair, you are so very correct. You have shown amazing strength and will continue. The world is here behind you. xo

    ReplyDelete
  11. It was a good post. Eratic or not...it's whats on your mind and you put it in to words perfectly. I'm not going to lie...I cried through the entire thing. I think I've told you this before...but reading your blog is one of the only things that brings me to tears. No movies, no songs, no homecomings, but it reaches something somewhere inside of me. Ariana is so blessed to have a mother like you. Im happy you went to the dinner and talked to other Gold Star wives...I know you get a lot of comments and they all say "I cant imagine" and that probably doesnt help at all, but Im sure speaking with those wives was a little helpful and definitely bittersweet. Im rambling so Ill cut this short...My race for Jonny is coming up...Ill keep you posted. If you want to link my blog on to your blog for donations, that would be nice. Just have your reading scroll to the bottom of my blog and there is a story about Jonny and a donate button. :) Thinking of you!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I have been following this blog of a soldier and he wrote the most awesome letter to his father who died when he was three years old and I wondered if it would give you a small glimpse of what your daughter will experience hearing the good stories about her dad. I hope it helps. http://onemp.blogspot.com/2010/07/dear-dad.html

    ReplyDelete
  13. I will forever think of and pray for you. Best wishes.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I found your blog through Lady Bloggers and let me just say that this is hands down the most moving site I have ever been to. My heart aches for you and your baby girl. I feel torn apart inside reading your experience and your emotions. No one should have to go through what your little family has. Despite not feeling strength right now, you definitely have an unspeakable amount. You press on, raising your little girl the best you can, and sharing your story with the rest of us. If that isn't strength I don't know what is.

    ReplyDelete
  15. You will give Ariana your very best and it WILL be enough. Johnny is with you every step of the way and he will make sure of it!

    ReplyDelete
  16. You will get through this! I believe God blessed you with Ariana for when this time came so you weren't alone. It's going to be hard..your going to have ups and downs. Your supposed to otherwise your not human! Just remember your never alone. You have your daughter and TONS of family and friends standing right beside you and praying for you!

    ReplyDelete
  17. You don't have to be sorry. The fact that you feel the need to apologize at the end of your post breaks my heart. You are only sharing what is true, there is no apology for that. I hope people aren't really telling you "you'll find love again", cause even the thought of someone saying that to you right now makes me want to hit them.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I know I can't say anything that will help in the slightest. Just know I think about you and Ariana all the time and pray for you both EVERY day.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Oh honey! I'm crying with you. Some people are so interested in seeing you "move on" so they will feel less awkward, or because they don't know how to deal with this. Don't let them get to you.

    I can only tell you what my other widster friends have told me helped them not just survive, but thrive - leaning on God. Read how he took care of Ruth after she lost her husband, her home, everything. How Jesus had compassion on widows even though they were considered the outcasts of their day. God loves and comforts the widow. Go to His word and He will use it in your life in a powerful way.

    Love you and praying for you!

    ReplyDelete
  20. oh mrs. p, all i can offer is my prayers - for you, your daughter and the repose of your beloved's soul.

    and, to offer the small comfort that this part of the grief cycle is completely normal and natural - it ebbs and flows, seems to not be as bad and then smacks you over the head again and the bone-crushing sadness comes back again.

    hugs and many, many more prayers for you guys. God bless.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Mrs. P, I had all of this stuff I was going to write, and then it seemed fruitless, b/c although I lost my daughter in April, i don't think i could survive w/o my husband, and some how you are....you are an amazing woman, and know there are many prayers out here for you and your family.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Please know that you never have to apologize to us. This is your space and you get to pour your heart out and treat it however you so choose.

    You are an amazing person for making it this far and I have every confidence that you will persevere. I see you as a determined and resilient person and if anyone can fight this...it's you. You have to. You have that baby girl. If you weren't around how would she ever feel the love of her dad? You give that to her.

    My heart and thoughts go out to you. ((hugs))

    ReplyDelete
  23. *hugs* *hugs* *hugs* and prayers for you and Ariana.

    ReplyDelete
  24. I know you have heard this eight million times, but girl, you are so strong! You are going to make your daughter so proud, and you know that your wonderful hubby left her here on earth with you to help you heal. :) Everything will turn out just fine, and know that as a fellow airman and military wife myself....I support you. If you need anything, I'm only a facebook message away!

    <3 you

    ReplyDelete
  25. Nothing I can say will help, but love you and your honesty and please ALWAYS write how you feel. You're doing such a great job with your little girl.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I don't have anything to help I just wanted to let you know that even though I don't "know" you I think about you and pray for you EVERY day. I wish I had something to say to help. I know that a lot of people are praying for you and Ari. Hang in there!!
    Heather (Army wife)

    ReplyDelete
  27. Semper Fi.

    Unfortunately, that's all I've got to offer. :(

    ReplyDelete
  28. Girl, you are solid, in the ways that matter you know the real deal. Your love for Jonny was just that, and between you two..and now your daughter..you know what ....F**** everyone else, it isn't your job to convince others of anything, I get it, I know how you loved him, and vice versa, it seeps through the screen when I read what you write..honestly it does. I have not idea, I don't get it. My hubs was in A-stan same time as your Jonny, I got a call, that my hubs was wounded in an enemy action from HQ Marine Corps. Turns out he hit an IED and was fine, intact and just had some small issues..like he says it was nothing. That call brought me to my knees and he was FINE..so I can not even begin to know the depth of your pain if that is what I felt like and he was fine. You know I think it is good you hang out with other Gold Star wives, you know the story about how you thought you had it bad because you had no shoes till you met a guy with no feet..well my hubs battalion lost a Marine named David Spicer, when I seen his head stone at Arlington it brought me to my knees.. you should go there and check it out.. http://www.arlingtoncemetery.net/dsspicer.htm
    Not that your pain is less, I get that there is no greater depth than losing what you did. I think you know how fortunate you are to have Ariana because honestly kids keep your head in the game, you can't check out, she needs you. You are my Marine Sister, Aunt..whatever..you are a member of my family..I am proud of that. We will never forget Jonny EVER.

    ReplyDelete
  29. My heart goes out to you! There is nothing that I can say except that despite what you may think of yourself, your talking and getting it out there and being real with yourself and your daughter! I know you are an amazing mother! Again, my heart goes out to you.. I was crying reading this and you might be one of the strongest people I know of.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Glad you had some quality time with the other ladies.
    Sorry to hear you are hurting so much!!
    Praying and thinking of you! :(

    ReplyDelete
  31. (hugs) im glad the memorial went to good! I keep praying and hoping for you & Ariana.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I am deeply touched by your love for your husband. I know that telling you how much I feel for yout o be going through this, will never truly help or even begin to explain how I really just want to give you a great big hug & cry w/you. I read your blog weekly and it makes me really sit back and appreciate all that I do have. I am thankful for your words and for opening up my eyes to how short life really is.

    Hang in there. I'm praying for you!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Came across your blog the other day and cried. I'm also a Marine Wife who's husband is deployed.
    You are such a strong person, I admire you. I'm so sorry for your loss.

    ReplyDelete
  34. I know you don't know me, but I just want to say that you are an amazing woman and I just want to give you a hug and say that everything will fall in to place in time. I don't know what you are going through on the same level, but I know about loss, and on a very personal level and I know how much it hurts and how hard it is to push through. Keep your head high and your heart full. If you ever need anything, please, don't hesitate to ask.

    ReplyDelete
  35. You are one of the strongest women I "know". When you are feeling like this, please remember that it's normal. ANYTHING you feel is normal right now. You're right...no one will ever be your Mr. P, but you are also never alone. And your best will be good enough for your beautiful daughter, because she has an AMAZINGLY strong Mommy, and a Daddy who she will know through you and all those who loved him so much.

    Bless you and yours.

    ReplyDelete
  36. I can't begin to understand what you are going through and quite frankly it makes me feel slightly guilty for feeling depressed for no good reason... and I have no words of comfort. This probably won't even help, but hang in there.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Oh Rachel ♥

    I'm so very, very sorry, but like I always say, your strength amazes me.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Praying for you. While I can't begin to know what you are feeling, I can pray for you to feel some peace. And to get used to a new "normal." I pray that God gives you strength when you feel like you are weak.

    ReplyDelete
  39. don't feel entitled to write to us after an absence because honestly I understand that you're dealing with so much heartache, pain and overall feeling overwhelmed. But honestly you are so strong in what you are doing I know it hurts and I know that it's unfair that the forever that you both vowed has been severed. I know that he is watching you and your daughter. Remember that in our darkest hour there is always light. I know you will find yours. With all the love, hope, prayers that I can give from faraway.
    -Kelly

    ReplyDelete
  40. Mrs. P--
    I read your posts everyday---over and over. My heart aches for you. I can't even begin to understand or try to understand the emptiness and longing that you feel. I tear up at work as I read the posts you wrote when he was physically with you and in the time after. You are such a strong woman and I find myself looking to you as an example to model myself by. You have taught me to dig deep and move forward--like you my heart, mind,body and soul belong to a Marine. You have been blessed to find the love of a truely great man--I have read many of the news articles written about him and as a proud patriotic american woman I am in debted to him and you and your whole family for the ultimate sacrifice you have made so that I can sleep safely at night.
    You are and will be a wonderful mother to your daughter.I know you will raise such a wonderful daughter who will always know the great love her parents shared. She is a living example of the love you two are blessed with. I pray for you everyday(eventhough we dont know one another). I pray for your strength. Take it as you can. You will draw strength and hope from places you never thought possible.

    ReplyDelete
  41. It sounds like the fog lifting is a blessing and a curse. Your pain makes me ache and I'm profoundly sorry that the English language doesn't do your feelings justice. "This fucking blows" doesn't even come close to how you're feeling and yet, somehow it has to be enough. You and your baby girl are always on my mind...

    ReplyDelete
  42. Rachel, thank you for being so raw and open. Please know that your family, your Phi Mu Sisters, your friends (and blog/facebook too) are supporting you. You are setting a wonderful example of being strong through the "worst" for so many people. Your daughter has one hell of a role model...
    thoughts/prayers, I wish I could take away your pain.... Leeann

    ReplyDelete
  43. I'm not a usual commenter.. but your posts about your loss..just tear me up. I can FEEL it. How much you love him. My husband is currently deployed and so I like to read blogs from the wives and stumbled onto yours. You have a gift of making the reader feel what you feel. Or as close as possible anyway. I will never feel all of what you do, but I am wiping tears away now anyway. I find myself crying with you as I read it. I am so grateful for your husband's service and will continue to wish you and your lovely daughter well.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Happy or sad, both feelings need to be expressed. Especially in times like this. Right now it seems impossible, and the pain is so new. But, I can almost promise that it will get better. The pain never goes away, neither does the love, or longing for him. But, as the days go by we get stronger. At first we are lost, and with their love and guidance we'll find our way. We will jump 3 steps forward, and at times be knocked 5 steps back. Eventually the steps forward are more than the ones back, and we learn how to dodge life's curve balls. It's a tough ride, and one totally fucked up roller coaster, but you can do it! Chin up love. When you feel like it's hard to push on, always remember you have some pretty awesome widsters around you, and an amazing family that will pull you through. You might not see it yet, but you are stronger than you think! Hugest of all hugs to you and Ari!! LOVE YOU!!

    ReplyDelete
  45. You and your daughter are always in my thoughts and Prayers. You are an Amazing lady, and are doing a wonderful job. It does take time, you have been through a lot. I hope you have a great support system to help you out. Good Luck with everything.

    ~Alicia

    ReplyDelete
  46. No adequate words.

    God Bless You and Jon and Ari.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Do not apologize for any of this. It is all part of your healing process. Journaling (or in this case blogging) is one of the best tools of healing.

    You are super strong. Stronger than you know. And you will find in the end, that you will pull through. You may never feel 100% complete again, but you will make it through this difficult time.

    I know that I certainly admire you. There are absolutely no words for the "blankness" I feel when putting myself in your shoes because I cannot fathom the situation at all.

    Keep writing.

    ReplyDelete
  48. I don't know you. But every time I read your blogs, I wish with all my heart that I could reach through the computer and ease your pain somehow. My husband is a blackhawk pilot in the Army, and it kills me that you (and soooo many others) are going through this. I wish there were words I could say, but there aren't. Just know that a strange lady in Fort Campbell, KY is thinking about you and your daughter. And praying that you find the strength you need.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Please remember you are never alone. You will always have a larger extended family in the Marine Corps. My heart breaks for you and I wish there were magic words that would give you all the comfort and peace you need, unfortunately I can't find them.

    You and your daughter will always be in my thoughts.

    ReplyDelete
  50. HEY I JUST WANT TO SAY THAT THINGS ARE HARD RIGHT KNOW AND I CAN KINDA UNDERSTAND THAT, AND NO THINGS WILL NEVER BE THE SAME BUT THEY WILL GET BETTER. I LOST MY FATHER WHEN I WAS 13. IT WAS A VERY CONFUSING AND TOUGH TIME FOR ME, WHEN MY MOTHER TOLD ME I THOUGHT AT ANY MOMENT THAT MY FATHER WAS GONNA JUMP OUT AND SAY THAT IT WAS ONE BIG JOKE, BUT OF COURSE THAT NEVER HAPPENED. IT DIDNT REALLY HIT ME THAT I WOULD NEVER SEE HIM AGAIN TILL I SAW HIM LAYING ON A TABLE BEFORE BEING CREMATED. FOR A LONG TIME WHEN MY FAMILY AND I THOUGHT OR TALKED ABOUT HIM WE WOULD ALL CRY, BUT AFTER A WHILE WHEN WE THOUGHT OR TALKED ABOUT HIM WE WOULD LAUGH AND SMILE. I KNOW ITS HARD AND IT REALLY SUCKS, BUT IT WILL GET A LITTLE BIT BETTER AT A TIME AND EVENTUALLY YOU'LL LAUGH AND SMILE WHEN YOU THINK AND TALK ABOUT HIM. I WISH YOU AND YOUR DAUGHTER THE BEST OF LUCK. I HOPE YOU TWO CAN MAKE THE BEST OUT OF THIS SITUATION AND HAVE A HAPPY LIFE TOGETHER.

    ReplyDelete
  51. I'm sorry that things are getting "real" for you, because in so many ways, denial is so much easier. I'm glad to hear that you got the opportunity to bond with others who understand you and what you're going through like no one else will ever be able to. Keep on trudging through, you're doing one hell of a job.

    ReplyDelete
  52. I am sending hugs and prayers your way. I love how you brought your daughter, I love that you want her to be a part of it. I think it will mean alot to her when she is old enough to understand.

    I are so brave and you seriously amaze me.

    ReplyDelete
  53. In my casuality notification course they told us never to think we have to say something if we don't know what to say. People always think they have to say something to you..to make you feel better..but I know it just makes us feel better, like we are doing something. I am so sorry that so much hit you at once. I wish I could do something to make your life easier and better...but I know I cannot do the one thing that would help the most. I can only offer my sincere thoughts and hugs for you and Ariana..you are in my prayers daily.

    ReplyDelete
  54. My Dear Rachel

    Please don't apologize for your feelings anymore- You have every right in this world to have everything your feeling. If I could take away all your pain, you know I would. Every single day i think of you and Jonny- everyday- And it doesn't seem real to me I will never be able to touch the pain your going through. The only things I can provide are my love, trust and friendship.

    ReplyDelete
  55. I just ran across your blog recently and, after reading the majority of your entries..I feel like I know more about you than I do about some of my friends. You are so open and brave and I'm sure that at this point it's hard for you to see that..but you ARE. My heart breaks for you and every entry has moved me to tears. But, I just want you to know that I (and I'm sure your other readers as well) admire you. I can't imagine going through all the things that you have at such a young age and also with a baby...but you do it with more grace than I could ever hope to have. Just know that there are people out here who are sending as many good vibes as they can pull together to you and your beautiful daughter. It's obvious that, although your heart is broken, you are an amazing mother and will continue to be so.

    ReplyDelete
  56. ...I want to give you a real hug.... I love you. ~ Maggie

    ReplyDelete
  57. You are strong and tough and amazing. Even though time can never fully heal your heart, you will absolutely be able to give Arianna everything she will need from you, as well as keep her fathers memory strong and alive in her. I am so sure that you can do it, even though it hurts so much, you can do it. You're a Marine's wife.

    ReplyDelete
  58. I just found you through the Lady Bloggers Society and WOW, am I glad I made my way here. Your words really moved me and my heart aches for you. I can't imagine what you're going through but I wish you all the strength in this world.

    NEVER apologize for experiencing the lows and for detailing them on your blog. It's what you created this for and you need to get these feelings down, girl. What you have experienced, and relived this past week in the form of a memorial, will be with you always... but I have no doubt that you are doing everything you can for your daughter. You're teaching her about the kind of man your husband was, which is not only a true testament to your character, but it says a lot about the kind of mother you are. You are doing a fantastic job. Allow yourself to grieve when you see fit. We don't always know when memories will sneak up on us, but we have to be prepared for their repercussions. You are an inspiration for so many and I just want to give you a giant hug.

    I am your newest follower.

    ReplyDelete
  59. Mrs. P---
    I have been reading every single one of your blogs over and over the past few weeks. I can't even begin to understand or try to understand the emptiness and longing that you feel. I tear up at work reading the posts you wrote when Mr. P was with you physically and now. Being a witness to even just a fraction of your love for him and his for you as you write is a testimony to how love can shape and change the course of your life for the better. You are such a strong woman and I find myself looking to you as an example to model myself by. Like you my whole being, everything I am, mind, body, soul, and heart belongs to a Marine. You have been blessed to find the love of a truely great man--I have read many of the new articles written about him and as a proud patriotic American woman I am in debted to him and you and your whole family for the ultimate sacrifice you have made so that I can sleep safely at night.
    Your husband couldn't have picked a better mother to raise his daughter. You will give your best and I know you will raise such a wonderful daughter who will always know the great love her parents share. She is a living example of the love you have for one another. I pray for you everyday(eventhough we dont know one another). I pray for your strength. Take it as you can. You will draw strength and hope from places you never thought possible.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Rachel,
    You really are so amazing! I hurt for you and am always praying and thinking about you. I am so glad that you were able to spend time with some girls who can offer support and understanding. I feel for all of you. You are an amazing mother, and have gotten through so much so far that I am not sure I could have made it through. Please know that you have so many people thinking and praying for you. Johnny will bring you strength. I wish that I could take away your pain. I know that you can do it and that you will find some peace one day. God Bless your precious family.

    ReplyDelete
  61. I have been following your blog since Memorial Day and have been wanting to write to you and even meet you. You are a Super woman, don't let anyone take that away from you, not even you! My dad died when I was 2yrs old and although I have no memories of him my mom has always told me stories and I have pictures of him and I love him so very much. It is sad and yes it sucks to grow up and realize that it probably was awesome to have had a dad but my mom did an awesome job and I love her soooo very much for that. She was a widow at 21 and worked so hard and was so depressed and her health wasn't the best but her love for me and hard work to provide for me were enough. Even if you don't realize it even this blog shows Ariana how much you care and love her and everything that you do to keep your husband's name and story alive also shows her how much you care, you are going a great job and even if it seems as you can't continue to go on just keep thinking of your little girl, the things Jonny would have want her to know about him and things he would like for you to do and keep on marching strong! I know you hear it from many people but you are in our thoughts and prayers and I'm not gonna lie my mom has remarried and even 26yrs later she still thinks about my dad and says she still loves him and even dreams about him sometimes. You will never love someone the same and no one will ever fill his spot in your heart but you will find someone one day that wont ask for that but for a new little piece that you will be willing to share with them. Best of luck! and I will keep following your blog!

    ReplyDelete
  62. There are just no words that I may send to you that will make any of this better or easier. You are raw, you are brave--

    I wish I could just sit with you. Hug you when you need it. Be some sort of silent strength for you to draw from.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Simply moving. Thinking of you.
    Richelle O'Reilly

    ReplyDelete
  64. I, like everyone else, have been following your blog and, as someone else said..my heart aches for you. Even though I don't know you personally, I feel like I know enough about you to know what an amazing wife, mother, and person you are. Your daughter will always know she is loved - always believe that. Your bravery and honesty are inspiring. I can't imagine what it's like to go through the things you have been through at such a young age and, to me, you are wise beyond your years. Your entries are so raw and honest that I find myself in tears at your sadness and smiling when you seem to be even the slightest uplifted. Your blog is an outlet for you - never apologize for the things you write. We read because you are an amazing woman and we all look up to you. We are all reading this and sending every good vibe we can find to you and your daughter. Right now, you may seem alone...but just know that, when you are ready, there are so many people who want to love you and be there for you and give you a big hug!

    ReplyDelete
  65. ((Rachel)) I'm praying for you and Ariana everyday. Your posts are always moving, I feel your pain & wish I could take it all away.

    ReplyDelete
  66. Mrs. P, I think and pray about you and Arianna so often, praying things get a little easier everyday!

    ReplyDelete
  67. Mrs. P, I wanted to tell you that I love reading your blogs. I regret the topics of most of what you have to discuss, I truly, truly, am sad for you, and wish more than anything that for you, and other spouses who have become "war widows", didn't have to lose their husbands or wives, sons or daughters. I can tell you truly loved your husband, something that I find can't be presumed in military marriages. But all that aside, I am married to a soldier, and we are facing our upcoming first deployment. It took me months to even admit to my husband that I was afraid I would say "good-bye" to him, and never get to say "hello" again. It's still my biggest fear, a reality that I know neither of us can guarantee he'll be safe, or do anything to change anything. I feel like I'm functioning like I'm expecting the worst...I, too, love my husband dearly, and I want to know he'll be coming home safely when his tour is over, but we just don't know what will be. I'm rambling, but you have my deepest condolences, military spouse to military spouse. If we considered our husbands the same, loved them the same, I know the void you feel that no one else could possibly fill, even if you found love again, it's not the same, but I only hope it satisfies you. At least you have your daughter, a piece of your husband, so he is truly, never completely gone. My best to you both. You're truly an inspiration.

    ReplyDelete
  68. you don't know me, but i pray for you and your little peanut ari everyday, for things to get easier, for the what if's to subside, for the future and time to heal the wounds and help instead of seem so scary. You and your strength amaze me, you are an amazing woman and just know we are all here for you, mil-spouses stand together through thick an thin.

    ReplyDelete
  69. Praying that things get easier as the days go! I lost my mom when I was 19, so I know how it is to lose someone that means the world to you.

    I gave your blog an award though! :)
    http://thesweetlifeofsemperfi.blogspot.com/2010/07/my-first-award.html

    ReplyDelete
  70. "I hate seeing families together because mine will never, ever be complete."

    I cried when I read this, because I feel the same way. And I hate part of myself a little bit each time I experience it. Please don't let those feelings stay. Please find a way out of them . . . for me. Because I don't know how to do it right now.

    ReplyDelete
  71. You are stronger than you know <3 I'm praying for you and Ariana

    ReplyDelete
  72. You may not realize this now, but you're stronger than you think. My thoughts are with you, and my heart breaks for you. Lean on your friends that "get it," and I hope that you find peace quickly.

    ReplyDelete
  73. You're in my thoughts and prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  74. Thinking of you and sending you love and hugs.

    ReplyDelete
  75. Dear girl,

    I can't begin to imagine what you're going through and can only tell you that my prayers are with you. Your husband will live through your and your family's memories and your daughter will know him through your love.

    Know that there are a people who love you and care for you and that you can lean on for however long it takes.

    ReplyDelete
  76. praying so much for you and your sweet little girl. sending lots of love your way!

    ReplyDelete
  77. Mrs. P, you are so brave to deal with this by loving your daughter and by writing your way through it. I know with self-reflection and selfless love of beautiful Ariana you will slowly get stronger every single day.

    ReplyDelete
  78. You dont know me...my husband was a Marine and my heart broke reading this post. I pray that things will get easier for you. I know you have a long road ahead of you but you seem like an amazing person and I'm sure you will be the best mother you can be. I'm so sorry for your loss...its unimaginable, but I want you to know how grateful I am for people like you and people like your husband. You both have given huge sacrifices for our country and I just hope you know that so many people are thankful and greatful for that. I'm glad you have your little girl because a piece of him will always be with you. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

    ReplyDelete
  79. Mrs. P,
    First of all, I am very sorry for your loss. I know that times are hard now, but just imagine how happy he must be to be smiling down on you and your beautiful baby girl from heavan. You are such a strong person and I know that he is proud of you, as is everyone else in your life.
    Blessings.

    ReplyDelete
  80. I wish there was someone who could hug you every day and with each hug give you a little bit of hope, and a glimpse of the future, where your baby will be growing up, and learning life. She'll grow up to be strong, brave and a fighter; like her mother and father.

    ReplyDelete
  81. Mrs. P. Your courage and love is an inspiration. It shines through just reading your blog and your thoughts. Thanks for sharing your courage with others.

    ReplyDelete
  82. God bless you and your little girl. and your husband. there are so many people who are grateful for men like your husband who go and fight for our country. i am so sorry for your loss. i know that God takes care of His children. i know He'll take care of you and your daughter.

    ReplyDelete
  83. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your daughter. I truly hope that knowing that there are so many people that care about you will help you get through this awful time and also help you realize the joy that's in the world and in your daughter's eyes. I hope that she will be the one to pull you through and seeing such a miracle as your daughter will help you see that she is a precious gift and the way that your husband will always be with you and you do get to see her everyday. I am not a widow, nor am I a mother, so I can't possibly understand, but I wish you the best and thank you for your sacrifice.

    ReplyDelete
  84. I am sure that your husband is very proud of your strength, Rachel. I think he in his ethereal form now and can visit you anytime he wants, so he is always around I am sure. We all love you and hope the best for you.

    ReplyDelete
  85. Hi Mrs. P...I just found your blog and want to say that I am SO SORRY you lost your beloved. Grief is a process...and it sounds like you are going through it in all the right ways. So don't be hard on yourself if each day isn't as good as the last...or if some days you and the baby just need to rest. It's ok...be good to yourself...and with each day you will find a little more light to show you the way.

    ReplyDelete
  86. Hi Mrs. P,

    I think you are an amazingly strong and courageous woman for going through all of this is still managing to raise a beautiful little girl! My thoughts & prayers are with you and your family. Things WILL get better, I promise. With your great attitude, I know you will be alright.

    Oh, and I really love the way you like to say you are "married to an angel." -- it's such a thoughtful and true way to put it.

    Stay strong,
    Sarah

    ReplyDelete
  87. Dear Rachel,
    My prayers are with you and Arianna. Today I celebrate my second years as a parent as my Wee One hits the 2year mark and the thought of her to have never known me should I be removed from the picture is heartbreaking.
    But I can say this, that he looks down on her and you and smiles warmly and she will always have that special angel to guide her.
    My daughter was a twin who lost her sister just before birth so I know about angels and kids :-)
    There is a secret blessing there.
    All my thoughts from my family to yours.
    Ty Sullivan and The Sullivan Family

    ReplyDelete
  88. Just know that there are a lot of folks thinking about you, praying for you, and sending you the best possible wishes today, and every day. You have been through so much, and done it with strength, dignity and love. It sounds trite, but time will make it easier... in the meantime, focus on your daughter, lean on family and friends for support, and keep taking those little steps that will take you where you need to be. Your best will be good enough... have faith in that, and give yourself time. And never feel you need to apologize. :)

    ReplyDelete
  89. I am admired by your dedication to stay strong and keep the legacy of your husband alive. Your daughter will live on through your strength and will know that her father passed in the most admirable way ever possible.

    Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  90. I am so sorry for your loss. While I have not experienced the death of my partner, I have experienced the death of a parent while I was a child and it's a cruel tragedy regardless of who is taken from you.

    Just know that while it doesn't feel like it now, one day you WILL be better. You will surely still have your hard times, but the good times will start to come around more often. Even if you don't know what to say or how to express yourself now, one day you will be able to. So just hold on for that day.

    I can't imagine the way you feel right now. No one will be able to say the exact right thing (other than him), but just know that there are a lot of people who care about you and wish you all the best. Your daughter is beautiful and she is so blessed to have you and her dad in her life :)

    Much love - Laura

    ReplyDelete
  91. I'm so sorry for your loss. And it's completely fair to be in pain and express it out loud.... life does suck. Please know that there are so many people out here who believe in you, and are grateful for people like you and your husband. I admire you so much, and I know your daughter will too as she grows old enough to understand. Hang in there - we've got your back. *hugs*

    ReplyDelete
  92. Hi Rachel,

    I am a totally new, random stranger to your blog. I know that no "words of comfort" I have to offer are going to change what has happened or could possibly come close to healing the pain, sadness, and hurt you have been experiencing in your grief. I just want to let you know I am praying for you and your family, and sending you lots of love. I wish I could give you a hug and offer a listening ear . . . but for now, cyber hugs and an offer of listening through email (if you'd like) is the best I can do. Blessings . . . xo

    ReplyDelete
  93. I'm not american - I'm european - but I know your husband died fighting not only for the US but also for us and all our families.
    Tonight I will pray for him, may his soul rest in peace, and also for you and your little child. I hope someday you can find a little bit of peace and happiness with her, surrounded by your friends and supported by your family. God bless you.

    ReplyDelete
  94. Thank you so much for sharing what you are going through. While it sounds like things are extremely rough right now, it looks like from these comments that you have so many people supporting you and a bright future. And rightly so! Thinking of you and Ariana.

    ReplyDelete
  95. You give strength to yourself and your daughter when you allow the time to feel and heal.

    Our prayers are with you.

    ReplyDelete
  96. Hi Rachel,

    I lost my dad a few years ago and I can tell you that, though time does not heal wounds at all, it does have a way of making that pain less of a priority in your mind. Right now you seem to have some wonderful supports through the military, and a beautiful little girl, and these are wonderful blessings that let you occupy your mind and get through this. But I know you probably have those sudden, unexpected moments of intense grief and I wish I could help you take those away. When I get them, I try to pull up one of my happier memories, and it seems to help a little. Or I just cry it out and it passes. Hold on to those happy moments and write them down if you need to. Share them with your daughter as often as you can. You are now, and will continue to be a fantastic mom.

    ReplyDelete
  97. Hi Rachel,

    We are with you.
    keep the faith.

    -Vin
    India

    ReplyDelete
  98. Mrs P -

    Your best IS enough. It's so very clear from your blog how much you love her. And want what's best for her. And that IN ITSELF is enough. I think you are probably the bravest person I have ever met (although of course, I will never meet you in person). People like you inspire me to be better.

    I will pray for you, and for your beautiful daughter.

    Much love.

    ReplyDelete
  99. Wowsa... I'm sitting here in tears and I wish I could say something that could help your situation. I do know that just from reading this that you are an incredibly strong woman. You and your beautiful baby are in my thoughts and prayers eternally!

    ReplyDelete
  100. Dear Rachel,

    We don't know each other, but I just wanted to send you a note of encouragement. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm sorry that your daughter won't get to know her dad - that is a complete rip-off.

    Though I don't know you, I have great confidence that you are going to be a fabulous mother to Ariana, even though you have to do it without your husband. You don't have to do it alone - you are clearly well-loved! Hang in there, and know that every parent can only do his or her best, and I bet your best is really, really good.

    Take good care of yourself. You deserve it!

    ReplyDelete
  101. Mrs. P,
    I lost my first love four years ago.. And I could never understand EXACTLY what you are going through, but I hope I can understand enough. I know how broken I felt, and how I felt like I was never going to be a real person again-- but somehow, I lived. I won't say that you will find love again-- maybe you will--but I know it wasn't what I wanted to hear.I have no inspiring words of comfort about your brave husband, except that civilians like myself truely appreciate everything they have done.
    I can only hope that you can be brave-- not just for you, but for your daughter, and get through this terrible, terrible loss. You and your daughter are both beautiful, and I believe that you are strong enough to give her everything she needs. As difficult and miserable as this is, women who can rise up through adversity, like you, give me hope for my own future.

    ReplyDelete
  102. Mrs. P,

    You are strong. Insightful. Beautiful.

    Remember each of those things when life is most difficult and let them in to your thoughts, even when you are sure that they are not true.

    My heart breaks for you and your daughter and I know from reading your blog that you will be a great mom and an amazing member of your community.

    I, and I am sure, others will continue to be here for you.

    ReplyDelete
  103. I cried too when I read this. All my love, hope and prayers to you, your daughter and your husband.

    ReplyDelete
  104. My heart goes out to you and your daughter. I wish like heck this war didn't have to be claiming so many lives. Everyone mourns in different ways, but I'll just share what I do during tough times. I try to give myself some down time to just think and mourn, but not for too long. Then I start planning and getting busy and thinking about the future, because I have control over the present and the future.

    Whatever you do, it's clear that your daughter will grow up with a lot of love in her life.

    ReplyDelete
  105. Dear Mrs. P,

    I know I’m just a stranger, a voice among many in the blogosphere, but I want to tell you that everything you are doing, from what I read here, is exactly where you need to be. When I lost someone, a stranger who’d been in similar shoes said something to me that helped me through, and I hope you take some comfort in it.

    She said: It isn’t fair. You’re right. And it isn’t ever going to be “okay.” “I’m okay” are words we tell people because we want to keep from screaming in public. But there will never be a time when it is “okay” that he’s gone, or “okay” that the plans you had are gone, the milestones he’ll miss in the baby’s life. But what is okay – is that you trust yourself in feeling everything you need to feel. There’s no time-limit on things like this. No manual that gives you a should or shouldn’t list of ways to feel. Be sad, be angry, be joyous when you hear a song or share good memories and be justifiably angry when the unfairness of this hits you.

    Feel it all, because it is real. Just because someone’s gone doesn’t mean we stop loving them. And if nothing else, Ari deserves to see just how much you loved her daddy. Friends from his unit, people who knew him can help fill in the blanks of what kind of a measure of a man he was, and speak of words like honor and duty. But since she never met him, by you letting the very real emotions show – in both good and bad times – she’ll be able to grow up and love him for the reasons you love him, too.

    ReplyDelete
  106. I wish I could say something to make you feel better, but nothing I can say could probably come close to helping. Just know that, along with everyone else who comments, I am deeply saddened on your behalf. I am sure you will make it through somehow, and Ariana will love her father to pieces, no matter what.

    ReplyDelete
  107. I imagine that this post was a very hard post to write. Don't beat yourself up for feeling bad. You are doing the best you can.

    ReplyDelete
  108. I cannot even begin to imagine what you are going through. You are so brave, and to be able to share this even in the face of your pain is incredible.

    You will work through this, and you are creating something beautiful by including your daughter in all that you do.

    Never be afraid to cry. Never be afraid to ask for support. And never forget that there are so many people who are walking alongside you, ready to pick you up when you fall.

    I wish you and your daughter so much love x

    ReplyDelete
  109. I lost a good friend in Afghanistan - that was hard. I can't imagine what you are going through right now. Know that people care and that you are in many thoughts. Know that Ariana is very lucky to have you and you to have her. Let her be your inspiration for moving forward. I hope each day gets a little bit easier for you.

    ReplyDelete
  110. The ancient mystics say that when a house burns down, the space in it remains, and so, they say, it is with our bodies. The body is gone, but the energy and vitality that is our spirit lives on forever. I know this is perhaps no comfort in this time of such sadness and loss; missing the physical presence of your loved one is just overwhelming; but someday, I hope, that you and your sweet daughter will find comfort in feeling his presence guiding you and filling you with the love, courage and strength that he so obviously had. Love lives on forever in the heart.

    ReplyDelete
  111. While words can't express the sorrow and pain I feel for you, I also want to express great gratitude to you. Your family paid the ultimate sacrafice on behalf of those of us who comfortably enjoy freedom here at home. While I'm sure this time is very hard, I am happy that you have a beautiful baby girl to shine a light in your life.

    From today forward, your family will be in my prayers. Keep your head up and my very best wishes for you.

    ReplyDelete
  112. I am so sorry for your loss. I know you say that you're afraid of being a broken mother, but you are going to be the best mother. You're more courageous than all of us, because you are going to do it alone. You are going to be such a role model to Ariana, when she is old enough to understand. She'll know that you didn't give up all of those times when it was hard, when many of us would have given up. You stuck around for her. You're in my prayers, and I know that you'll see him again.

    ReplyDelete
  113. Mrs. P,

    I just wanted to take a moment and tell you what an inspiration you are. You see yourself now as broken and incomplete, but, I see an unselfish, strong, determined woman...more "complete" in some ways than a lot of people out there.

    You are probably right-- you will never ever be the same. But, remember, though it is hard to see right now, this experience is serving to make you a stronger, more loving, more grateful "you." I've tried to remember that these losses that change us can either serve to make us bitter...or better. And I can see from all the love that is brimming in your post, your unwavering dedication toward your daughter, and the truthful, transparent way you are sharing about your loss, that you are choosing "better."

    From one stranger to another, here's a dose of virtual love and gratitude.

    ((love)) ((thanks))

    God Bless you and Ariana.

    -- Christy

    ReplyDelete
  114. I know I can't begin to understand how you're feeling or what you're going through, but I wanted you to know that I said a prayer today for you and your daughter.

    ReplyDelete
  115. I can't imagine what I would do without my husband and I try not to think about it. Stay strong, and know that there are people sending their love to you.

    ReplyDelete
  116. "Life does not put things in front of you that you are unable to handle" -Unknown

    I am praying for your family and your strength to continue on. This all will never be easy, but it will get easier everyday.

    ReplyDelete
  117. I cried through your post, for your loss, for your friends losses and for everyone who is affected by this. One thing that does shine through is how strong you are and how wonderful you are. Your daughter is a very lucky girl. :)

    ReplyDelete
  118. You won't be giving your daughter a broken mom. You're showing her strength by being there, still being alive. You're amazing. Don't give up. I'm thinking about you.

    ReplyDelete
  119. There's nothing I can say to take away your pain, but I will pray for you and your daughter every day. I know you feel like you don't have much strength right now, but this post is absolutely emanating your strength. I think your husband would be so proud to know that he chose such a wonderful mother for his daughter and to know that he can rest in peace knowing that you will hold things down until you see each other again.

    ReplyDelete
  120. "What if time gets unbearable? I see time as a very scary thing. Over time, I will realize it's been longer and longer and longer since I've seen him. I'm afraid he will fade and I will begin to fade with him."

    Try not to worry about "time" - just keep breathing through one day after another and it WILL slowly become more maneagable. Let yourself grieve - this IS the hardest time, right after the memorial, and you probably ARE at a very low point - but your own life will eventually move forward, and your beautiful daughter will keep a part of him alive for you for always.

    My heart goes out to you. Hang in there and be strong.

    ReplyDelete
  121. I hope you find peace through this storm.
    Keep hanging on.
    Hang on to Jesus.

    ReplyDelete
  122. You're in my prays

    ReplyDelete
  123. My heart breaks for you. I pray that you can find peace in your heart and strength to face each new day and to continue to be an amazing mother to Ariana.

    ReplyDelete
  124. You may find comfort in this blog sweetie: mattlogelin.com

    ReplyDelete
  125. You can do it. One step at a time. Life is amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  126. Thank you for all you and your family are doing and have done for our country. I am honored by your honesty. You and your sweet baby girl are in my thoughts and in my long-distance hugs I send to you.

    ReplyDelete
  127. Sending you love, thoughts and prayers xxx

    ReplyDelete
  128. I am so, so sorry you lost your husband. He is a hero and that is so wonderful, he is a hero. And you are a hero for making his memory real for your daughter. For taking her to his memorial so she knows she was there where all the love for him was present that day and that she is a testament of your love for each other. You will be strong, women are, mothers are. Pain does subside, the dull ache may be there always but the stabbing pains will go away with time. You will find joy again because you are young, you are a special woman and a strong and confident mom. Love is a feeling and you can feel it again if you let yourself. That doesn't diminish the love you feel for Jonny. I am praying for your continued healing, abundance of happiness in your future, and peace for your soul.

    ReplyDelete
  129. I am a US Army veteran and served in Operation Desert Storm.
    This is the first time we've met.
    I love you.
    I am sending love to you and wrapping you in my arms.
    ~xo

    ReplyDelete
  130. I hope you find strength in your little one. Life goes on, you're just on a different road now.

    Rachel, never forget Mr. P but also don't forget to live. Hard to say, but I believe you will find love again.

    ReplyDelete
  131. Mrs P. I'm thinking and praying about you and Ariana today. We love you all!

    ReplyDelete
  132. excuse me ma'am i have heard your story and i am deeply sorry for you loss. I am unable to say that i know what you're going through 1. because i am not a woman and 2. i am not married to a marine. but when i do my best to put myself in your shoes i feel pain and hurt as well. but let me tell you that you, like your husband, do not have a spirit of timidity, but one of love or power and of self discipline. Your husband had missions and saw them through to his passing, your daughter is your mission now! i think your husband would want you to take care of her just like he did for you. you say that he made you who you are, well make your daughter a princess by the way you live your life. whether you know it or not... your husband is part of your daughter. i hope nothing but the best for you ma'am have a blessed and beautiful day

    ReplyDelete
  133. There are no words that can take away the pain that you feel every single day. Just know that Jonny is always with you and Ariana, he's holding you, and loving you ever day.

    Know that I am always thinking about you and Ari and send prayers your way often!

    ReplyDelete
  134. You are an amazingly strong person- it will get easier. Know that I and so many others are praying for you and your sweet daughter!

    ReplyDelete
  135. I am so sorry for your loss. If it's any consolation at all, know that I am keeping you and your family in my prayers, as well as all who courageously serve our country and protect our freedom.

    sending some love your way!

    ReplyDelete
  136. I understand that there are no words to heal your wounds. You are grieving, upset, overwhelmed, devastated, lost. And that's ok. Take this time to experience those feelings. Although they hurt, hold them close to your heart and experience them completely. Because with time, the pain will slowly fade away. Every day will become a little bit easier, and each memory of your husband will become a little bit sweeter. Don't worry about being a "perfect" mother for your daughter -- you don't have to be perfect, you just have to be YOU. And although I don't know you, I can tell through your words that you are an amazing, strong and beautiful woman (even if you don't feel it now).

    I cannot say that I know how you feel, because I truly don't. But I can imagine how hard it would be, and my heart breaks for you. I am sending up prayers for you, Ariana and your husband. And if you ever need a stranger's ear to talk to or hand to hold, I would be honored to help. Your husband is a brave man, a hero, and angel.

    ReplyDelete
  137. Your web site and story are so touching. You and your daughter are in my prayers. I have a son leaving fr Afghanistan Aug 4th. What you are doin is bringing some light to such a dark situation. I pray for peace and joy in your life, Thank you for your service as as well.

    ReplyDelete
  138. I have no words, beyond I'm praying for you.

    ReplyDelete
  139. Reading your blog tugged at my heart more than I ever could have imagined. You and your little girl are in my prayers. I pray that you find healing and strength within the pain of your loss. Please be encouraged in knowing that now, your husband is just fighting alongside God to ensure that both you and Ariana don't ever fall. He is now with you every moment of every day, and I can assure you that he is so proud of the strong wife and mother that you are being through all of this. You are truly an inspiration Mrs. P, and he is one lucky man to have a woman like you in his life.

    Stay blessed <3

    ReplyDelete
  140. Your daughter is so blessed to have such an amazing woman for a mother. I can't tell you how much I appreciate this honest post.

    ReplyDelete
  141. Wow, I don't know what to say to this... All I can say is, best wishes, we are praying for you. You are loved. <3 Stay strong. =]

    ReplyDelete
  142. I am so sorry about your husband, he died fighting for our country and our freedom, he was a true hero. I just want you to know that you don't have to feel alone, that God is with you always, no matter what. Matt. 28:20 says "And remember that I am always with you until the end of time." Trust in Him, He has all the answers.

    ReplyDelete
  143. My prayers are with you and your sweet little baby. I hope you have sweet days ahead of you. Time will heal but you will never forget his love and that is so good. Take care! ~ Marcia (An Army Mom)

    ReplyDelete
  144. There is nothing I can really say that will erase the hurt, but I'm going to try anyway. I can tell by your writing that you are in a world of pain, and you don't deserve any of it. You are so strong, so courageous, and you are a beautiful person that had your world turned upside down. I admire you and your ability to continue on each day - no matter how trying. I hope things improve for you, and your story really moved me. Your daughter is beautiful, and she lucky to have such an admirable mother. I'll be thinking about you.

    ReplyDelete
  145. It's ok to be sad and hurt. How you feel and how much you love is a big part of what makes you who you are.

    Hang in there, and give you daughter a extra hug tonight. That always makes me feel better when I am down.

    ReplyDelete
  146. What an amazing woman you are, Rachel. And what an amazing baby Miss Ariana is, too. Your strong, brave, proud and loving husband is watching over the both of you every single minute of every day, heart swelling with pride.

    And the best gift you can ever give to that wonderful man is to draw on your many strengths, to lift yourself up on even the toughest of days, and to build a life for you and that baby girl, who is at the very beginning of what will be a wonderful life. There will be days when that sucks. And days when you want to just curl up in a hole. And every now and then, that's okay. But one lesson I learned from my mom that I carry with me daily is this: Her mission was to teach her 4 children to be survivors. And she was a single mom back in the days when being a single mom was a stigma not a norm. And she knew, that if she could accomplish that - if she could teach all of us to be strong, and tough, and instill in us the ability to survive, no matter what adversity struck us, that she was giving us the best foundation and the best gift of all. And she succeeded. Now, that's what I try to do with MY four children.

    And I'm sure that's what your darling Mr. P would want for you both. To be strong even when you are sad. And to teach that darling girl that her daddy was the strongest man you've ever known, and that that's going to be his gift to you both -- that strength that you'll carry with you forever.

    Much love and hugs to you --- you both are in my thoughts and prayers. And I know you'll be fine. I just know it!

    Shelly Kramer
    @shellykramer

    ReplyDelete
  147. All I can say is that now things are in God's hands alone. He will never give you anything you cannot handle and will somehow give you the strength to get through the rough times. Just remember that when things seem hopeless that I and so many others are praying for you and your daughter. I admire your courage and will to go on. I can tell that you are an incredibly strong person and I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  148. Never apologize for speaking the truth that’s in your heart. My prayers for you and Ariana are filled with blessings, love, peace and joy. ♥♥♥

    ReplyDelete
  149. I encountered some of the same feelings you are feeling now when I lost my father suddenly- that sometimes the responsibility of reality are overwhelming, that life isn't fair because our loved ones were supposed to be there. That when reality sets in, you feel so alone and helpless.

    But from personal experience I can tell you, that you will have enough strength, persistence, and patience to overcome anything that comes towards you. From all the anger, hurt, and emptiness now will come a love and resolve deep within.

    Your ability to share this openly is truly inspirational. My prayers go out to you, your daughter, and family.

    ReplyDelete
  150. Reading your blog was so hard. I know how it must feel. My dad was in the army and he is no longer with us. I feel your pain, but just try and be there for your family and remember no matter what happens he is still with you ever second of every day. I will pray for you because I know i had an extremely hard time when my father died. Please remember he is always with you. May God Bless.

    Rachael (from Powell, Ohio 17)

    ReplyDelete
  151. You are an inspiration. :)
    Prayers and love sent your way.

    ReplyDelete
  152. Terri wrote:

    I read your blog and cried for you. I have friends that are in Iraq and Afghanistan too.

    I cannot imagine losing my husband in action. I am so sorry that you are going through this.

    Your baby is beautiful, and I am sure your husband is looking over her each day.

    Be strong, and know that there are many of us that are praying for you and your daughter.

    look into the sunrise and know that each day will make you stronger.

    ReplyDelete
  153. Mrs. P,

    I cannot take away your hurt or your pain. I won't lie either and say I understand. I don't. My husband had wanted to be a Marine since he was 5 years old but 3 weeks into boot camp, he blew his knee and was medically discharged. Currently my stepson is a Marine and served in Iraq in 2006.

    I called my stepson's CO last summer to get information about having his unit participate as the Color Guard in an event and his CO told me he would have to call me back. About 15 minutes later, he returned my call and said he was leaving the home of a young Marine who was killed while serving in Afghanistan and it had been a hard day. I hung up the phone, got on my knees, and prayed for that family. For all the families who have loved ones who have passed away.

    You and your beautiful little girl will be added to my prayers.

    I am so sorry to hear about your loss. My heart absolutely breaks for you.

    I pray that as your daughter gets older, she realizes how millions of Americans depended on her daddy to keep us safe. Her daddy was one of America's heroes. No, it isn't fair that he had to die. But she will always have her daddy be an angel to protect her and love her. And Mr. P is your angel, too.

    God bless you.

    ReplyDelete
  154. I'm so sorry for your loss and what you are going through - it is so cruel that you are having to experience this, especially so young.

    I pray that you will continue to draw strength from Ariana (that is such a beautiful name!) - I am certain that you will be an amazing mum to her, your fierce love for her and for Jonny is so clear and although she won't get a chance to meet her father, she is one lucky child to have you as a mother. x

    ReplyDelete
  155. I can't begin to imagine what you're going through. All I can give you is my hopes and prayers that someday you'll be able to heal.

    ReplyDelete
  156. That's an extremely emotional thing to hear.
    But you're doing better than I ever expected someone could.
    Keep it up, because your daughter needs you.
    You'll be in my prayers.
    <3

    ReplyDelete
  157. Your honesty shows your strength. Your love between you and your husband transcends this. You're loving him, and he's loving you -- right now, at this very moment.

    ReplyDelete
  158. Oh you beautiful, strong woman! I also, am praying with all of my heart for you and your little girl. I fully believe you will see your wonderful husband again. I send you all of my love.

    ReplyDelete
  159. You are a brave and courageous woman. I have never experienced the hurt you are feeling, but I am confident that you will raise Ariana to be a shining star and she will continue on her father's legacy.

    Don't ever feel guilty or apologize for being sad or having doubts. You are only human. It would be worse not to talk about it.

    Sending blessings to you.

    ReplyDelete
  160. i too am a marine wife. my husband is still in flight school so i have yet to know the pain of him leaving for deployment and not knowing if he will return. people think that the men are the brave ones, it's true they are, but the wives are the real tough ones. we have to live this life that maybe we wouldn't have chosen for ourselves. you are a brave and courageous women. his strength lives in you. you are not alone and you always have your sisters in the corps. you will be in my thoughts and prayers.

    http://laurenlanzaosias.blogspot.com
    email me anytime.

    ReplyDelete
  161. I can't imagine all the pain that you are going through, and I can't imagine all that you will do. But, I am sure that you are strong and smart enough to overcome anything that comes your way.

    You are an absolute inspiration, and everyone in your life is lucky to see your courage.

    ReplyDelete
  162. There aren't enough hugs in the world to ease your loss, but please accept my virtual hug. You're an amazing woman and I wish the best out of life for you and your daughter.

    ReplyDelete
  163. You don't know me, but I just heard a little about your story and read this blog post.

    I can't imagine your pain. I'm sure it gets old hearing everyone say this, but I'm so sorry. I know I'm not where you are, and I can't even imagine it, but still - I'm so sorry.

    This must be the most difficult thing you've ever faced. I guess it could be the worst thing you'll ever face. I hope you don't feel alone.

    I'm glad to read that you were able to spend time with other women who know where you are. It seems like it would be really important just to be able to talk, just to be able to be understood at a time like this.

    I'm sure you've heard it all by now, but it seems like leaning on the strength of others - your family and friends and his family and anyone who loves you and anyone who will listen - it seems like that could be essential to survival. And I think, if you lean on their strength and support, you can let your daughter do the same, and she could grow up not with a broken mother, but with a community of people who surround her with love and life and all the things that she will otherwise have lost. I don't know if this kind of wound ever heals, but if it ever could, relying on your loved ones might be a step in a good direction.

    I don't know if you believe in a god. I'm sure if you do, then he's probably not on your good list right now. I think that's okay; he wouldn't be on mine. I would be furious at him, I think. I think I would hate him for a long time, and yell at him, and demand that he fix what has happened. But, in my short twenty years, there is one thing I have come to feel very strongly is the truth: that there is a God. That he is not detached, in outer space, watching from afar - but that he is here, with us, in the midst of our suffering and our joy. I have come to believe that he is not only present, but that he cares; and not only that he cares, but that his joy, and even his suffering, is directly connected to ours - that when we are happy, he is happy; that when we suffer, he suffers. I believe that he is good, not evil; that he is compassionate, not indifferent; that he is not just sympathetic, but empathetic. And if any of that is true for any reason, then there is someone here, with you, who is very strong, and very kind, and in the midst of this tragedy, he is looking for a way to turn an incredible evil into a beautiful future.

    Never stop hoping for the day when you will see your true love again. Let those who love you carry you and your daughter through this unimaginable pain. And, if at all possible, ask God to make beauty and life out of all this brokenness and death.

    If nothing else, you have my love and my prayers and any support I can offer. Please accept that, for whatever it may be worth.

    You will be together again soon.

    ReplyDelete
  164. I wish more than anything right now that you find peace one day. I cannot begin to imagine what you are going through. I can only offer a prayer for you and your daughter. My thoughts are with you.

    <3,
    Heather

    ReplyDelete
  165. You are so strong. Even when in pain, I can read the determination and resilience in your words.

    Life sucks, it really does. Especially when stuff like this happens. But it does. But if I've learned anything in these mere 18 years of my life, it's that it always gets better.

    You and your beautiful daughter will be in my prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  166. Many people are praying for you and your baby. We are so thankful to you and your husband for everything. There are many tributes that support that thanks http://hubpages.com/_1jlqz2sadegzu/hub/Love-Bomb-Rachel

    ReplyDelete
  167. You've got the support of so many people, and even though that isn't enough to fill the hole in your heart, I hope that's enough to help you through your darkest times.

    You're all in my prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  168. You're incredible. You're strong. You're brave. To be able to got through this for your daughter is the most amazing thing you can do. You are each others anchor now. She's yours, you're hers.
    Never feel alone because you have her and you have all of us praying for you and your little girl. God Bless

    ReplyDelete
  169. Though time does not heal all wounds, it does help the hurt a little, that I can truly promise you (coming from experience).

    Keep your head up for your beautiful little girl and understand that it is perfectly normal to have great days and bad days and it is all part of going through the motions.

    ReplyDelete
  170. I'm sorry for your loss. Jonny would be so proud of you, keeping it together for Ariana. I know it hurts, and it will always hurt, but you do the best you can and you stay strong. You mother that child and you keep her safe and you let her know that she's loved. You carry a little piece of Jonny with you always. In your heart and in Ariana.

    God bless! I hope the future is bright for you.

    ReplyDelete
  171. Rachel,

    There are so many cliches running through my head right about how things will get better but they seem to diminish and belittle the actual pain you're current feeling. I wish there was something I could say (although I don't even know you except the piece of your heart that I just read) that would take away the pain that you're feeling. I'm sorry for you loss and the loss that your daughter has experienced, although she doesn't understand it yet.

    Your determination is so inspiring to me. That you will not give up. Although you may feel that it won't be enough, it always will be. Your daughter will grow up knowing that although there was immense pain, you always did your best. You provided for her and most of all you loved her. That's all anyone can ask for. Although your husband may be gone from this earth, he will always be near. He will always hold you and Ariana in his hands. It may seem like you have to walk this road alone but you don't. We're all walking with you. Maybe not physically but in mind and spirit.

    I wish nothing but blessing on your life as you and Ariana embark together on a journey that you wish you could give back.

    ReplyDelete
  172. I'm glad you have support around you to help you through this. There is no right or wrong way to deal with something as tragic as this and how blessed you are for that adorable little girl. God Bless You!

    ReplyDelete
  173. I am so sorry for your terrible loss. Thinking of you and your daughter.

    ReplyDelete
  174. I am so so sorry for your loss. I can't imagine what it must be like to go through, but you're dedication to your daughter is so amazing. Your daughter is so lucky to have you for a mother, and to have someone who seems like he was such a wonderful person for a father, even if she won't get to meet him for a while. Praying for you and your family!

    ReplyDelete
  175. "Do not pursue the past.
    Do not lose yourself in the future.
    The past no longer is.
    The future has not yet come.
    Looking deeply at life as it is.
    In the very here and now, the practitioner dwells in stability and freedom"...

    Try to be in the present moment and when annoying thoughts come just focus on breathing. You have a beautiful girl, and she has an INCREDIBLE Mom!!!

    (((hugs))) and blessings ƸӜƷ

    ReplyDelete
  176. I just want to say that I admire you strength to keep going. Your husband will always watch over Ariana and you, don't forget that. You're in my thoughts and prayers.

    love, Angie

    ReplyDelete
  177. I'm so sad for your loss and the hard time you are facing now with just baby and you. I can't imagine enduring such sadness (husband's death) and happiness (baby's birth) at the same time. I'll be praying for you.

    ReplyDelete
  178. I know it's going to be bad of me to say this but I've been where you are. I won't say that time heals all wounds because that's crap. But, what I've gained through experience has shown me that I can live and I can only hope that you can get your footing back under you and live as well.
    I am stuck. I am stuck here living without the one person who made my life complete. And I fucking hate it! I hate it. This is a completely true statement. But don't end up cynical and hating life. No, you won't find somebody else to love like that again, and that's ok! Just find a group of people that love you and take strength from them when you have to. They will love you and you will love them and you'll get through the day.
    Your baby loves you and will remember what you love about her father.

    ReplyDelete
  179. I am so sorry to hear that you have lost your husband to war and that he never got to spend time with your daughter. At least his death was not in vain or pointless. He was serving his country and fighting for what he beleived in.

    Find strentgh and love in God. He will pour all you need upon you to get through this time. I have never faced this in my life, but He has helped me through some really hard times and now I know that when I am facing something difficult, I am not alone. Remember you and your daughter is being watched over and taken care of.

    ReplyDelete
  180. Dear Rachel: I am glad to see you blogging, writing about how you feel and your sense of loss. I can tell you this: don't worry too much about how much of yourself you have to give to Ariana at this time. Children are remarkably resilient and if there is attention given from other family members and neighbors it will be all she needs. I had postpartum depression for two years and my son and I made it through although it was a very dark time. My prayers are with you and Ariana.

    ReplyDelete
  181. I am so sorry for your loss. I admire your strength, even though it may not seem like you're at your strongest. Not only is your husband a hero, but you are as well - being able to make your beautiful daughter part of husbands life now and then is an amazing thing. She'll know that she is loved, and that you are an amazing mom, wife and woman - probably the strongest woman she will ever know.

    May your family find strength day by day <3

    ReplyDelete
  182. Your post brought tears to my eyes and an ache to my heart. I can't even begin to understand what you are going through, but you have written beautifully about it here.

    I am a broken mother in many ways myself, but I haven't lost my husband. Doing the best you can each day is all you can do. It is okay to cry. It is okay to be sad. Your daughter will grow up and she will see the wonderful man her father was IN YOU. You say your husband was your rock, but to me, you sound like a tower of strength in a time where I'd simply crumble and cry. You sound amazing.

    I am sending virtual hugs even though I'm just a stranger. Thank you for sharing your story and I know it will help others who have lost loved ones.

    You are amazing and special and a wonderful mother. Never doubt that.

    ReplyDelete
  183. God bless you. You are an amazing mother and a very inspiring person for all of us to aspire to. Stay strong!

    ReplyDelete
  184. I cannot begin to understand how difficult waking up each morning must be for you. Thank you for sharing your strength and your story with all of us. Your daughter is incredibly blessed to have such a mother.

    ReplyDelete
  185. I really don't have the right words to express myself here... your loss is devastating, and your heartbreak is clear. Just remember that the best parts of your husband will survive in his daughter, and in the memories and stories you can share with her.

    You and your daughter will be in my thoughts and prayers

    ReplyDelete
  186. You are truly an inspiration. God bless.

    ReplyDelete
  187. Bless your heart and may you find some peace. I'm crying with you as I type this...hopefully seeing all these comments from total strangers will help you see that you are not alone, are very loved and are being thought of daily. You are a strong woman and will definitely be an inspiring force for your daughter...she is so lucky to have you as a mom. Your husband is so proud watching you from wherever he may be. Wrapping my arms around you...big hug!! XOXO

    ReplyDelete
  188. Praying for you. You will make it through this, you have a blessing of a daughter and being with her will help ease the pain.

    ReplyDelete
  189. I am holding your suffering in my heart with hopes that it can ease some small sliver of pain.

    ReplyDelete
  190. There's absolutely nothing wrong, weak or unhealthy about letting yourself feel sad. Keeping it all in will just eat away at you. Let yourself feel it all, don't be afraid to cry, and keep your husband the hero in your memories.

    Hope you find your faith and strength. All my thoughts and wishes to you and Ariana x

    ReplyDelete
  191. Know that your husband lives on through your daughter and that every smile she gives you is his and every time you embrace her you are embracing him. You are loved and being prayed for.

    Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you;
    Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
    I will strengthen you,
    Yes, I will help you,
    I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’

    ReplyDelete
  192. My little sister's name is Arianne, so little Ariana has a special place in my heart without ever having met her. Ariana is going to grow to be such a strong, resilient, beautiful young lady and she will be raised feeling the love of her mommy and daddy every day. Keep talking about him. Keep his spirit alive by reliving the moments you had with him. Share them with Ariana. She will love every part of it. You are doing an amazing thing by documenting your feelings and love towards him. I hope you share this with Ariana one day. On days you are feeling low(er), please remember to come back to these comments and re-read them. We all love you and support you!

    Christi

    ReplyDelete
  193. The loss of a loved one is one of the most painful and difficult moment you can ever go through in life and i feel your pain and your angry feeling about the unfairness of it all. I once thought that i could never ever love again, that i was empty inside. It took me years to heal but eventually, i did. I wish i could give you a hug and share some of your pain. One day, you'll only see the good of him through your daughter's eyes. Feel blessed to have her. As you said, a little bit of him lives through her ...

    ReplyDelete
  194. you will never be alone. you're in my prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  195. When I read your post I thought that I wish that I had half the strength that you have. Being in such an unimaginable situation and dealing with it with your head high, and thinking of your child. Loss is a terible thing. It should not exist at all. But reading your blog, although you talk about fears doubts and pain- I get the feeling that you will be ok, and that your husband would be proud to see you the way you are.

    lots, lots of love
    k

    ReplyDelete
  196. I cannot imagine what you are going through right now, but I admire your strength.

    Never worry that you will not be anything but a fantastic mother to your little girl, she is truly loved both by you and your husband, who I am sure is watching over you both right now.

    You are an amazing and inspiring woman and will be in my thoughts.

    xx

    ReplyDelete
  197. I'm praying for you and baby girl.
    Please don't forget you are loved.

    ReplyDelete

Please feel free to leave a thought with me!

 

Copyright © 2014 | Designed by: Broken Road Creative