I was living 2 lives……

And it can be quite exhausting and daunting….

grief-is-like-living-two-lives

…….but for the most part I’m doing a lot better.

Christmas Day evening, when I realized I kept wishing for something that would never ever happen again? ….did a lot to calm me. It’s like I let out a huge sigh. Nick wanted me to move on and maybe it’s time I did. Maybe I want to start dating. (*ugh*  Thanks for throwing me back out there after 35+ years of NOT thinking about it.)

I will ALWAYS miss Nick. He was a force to be reckoned with. He was the love of my life and will always be a part of my life. Hell, I have all his cars, how can I NOT think about him? Family reunions will be difficult at first. All the firsts I will have will be difficult. Have been difficult. The last one that will be hard will be July 22,2017. One year. Sitting here thinking about it is making me sad but I’m not losing it. July 2017 will probably be another story. I will go sit with him that day. I will continue to visit him because it does a lot to calm my soul to sit and talk to him. I tell him what the G’kids are doing and how they miss him too.

I’m doing OK. I’m doing what I need to survive this first winter on my own. I have a guy up the road who helps me more than I can thank him for. I have a daughter from Thailand that is just awesome and keeps me on my toes. I have a son in Italy who keeps me giggling. I have my own children who are amazing adults married to amazing people with wonderful kids…….I just love them to bits. And back. I have 13 ‘grandchildren’ so far….counting the blood, step, and fosters. They are all mine, regardless. To me, it doesn’t matter….if they live with MY kids? That makes them MY grandkids. So there …. pffffft.

So on to this new chapter in my crazy life.

~So today I leave you with this: Birds sing after a storm; why shouldn’t people feel as free to delight in whatever remains to them? ~~Rose Kennedy

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Isn’t she just ADORABUBBLE?

I have a stunningly purdifuls and darn right cute granddaughter. I had to share her photo with you. I just love this little bug to the moon and back. Just look at those eyes!

The scary part is I put her photo up next to mine at her age and they are very similar. And of course I cannot find that photo in this computer. I’ll have to add it at home.

juliana-rose-in-purpleJuliana at WWII memorial.JPG

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This was my realization this morning. I’m living my life. I’m in charge of MY happiness. I just really like how this put everything into perspective.

I’m taking my key back. From my sorrow, from friends, from my kids and grandkids.

But thanks for y’all being there for me. It’s time for me to stand strong. Again.

See ya when I’m healed…..

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And….on to Christmas Day…

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To get a perspective on how much wood that is………..that’s one of those 30 gallon garbage cans over on the right side……3 rows of stacked chunks and on the side closest to the red wood stove is a stack of planks you can barely see.

I am beyond excited about this. What a wonderful Christmas present in the huge load of wood and for the two men that threw it in the basement for me! Thank you beyond words.

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My daughter gets it. I just LOVE this cup!!! It makes me smile.

Things are getting better for me. Christmas evening, I sat listening to Vince Gill singing and I was looking at the series of photos of Nick and I.

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And it suddenly hit me.

I’m wishing for something I cannot have. Ever again. I can’t wish Nick back. I don’t want him back…he was in such pain. I can’t wish that on anyone.

I will never have another love like what he and I had. I can’t have him back. I cannot think I’ll find someone like him as he was unique. Just like I am. I may have another man in my life. I may not. Friends with Benefits?? hmmmmm – interesting concept … I may even find love again. But it will be totally different.

It won’t be like what I had with Nick because it won’t BE Nick.

Ever since then….I’ve gotten calmer. I may get sad and down again, but I think it won’t last as long. I think this realization is putting me on the right path to healing.

In this season I will find hope, and grief as well. ~HAL

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Christmas Eve morning….

I knew this day was going to be hard…………and it was. It was something I needed to get through.

And I was bound and determined to spend part of it with Nick. So I left home around 915 or so, drove the 45 minutes to Nick, spent my time with him, then got home around noon. I took along a lawn chair so I had somewhere to sit. Cause that bench is COLD when it’s only 30° outside.

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I told him about the g’kids growing. How Lennox misses him like I do. How much I miss him. And wish he was still here. What I was doing for the weekend….just like the journal I started…..talking to him like he is still here.

Then I went home. Drained. And had to prepare to meet a bunch of people I didn’t know. My friend Kevin had invited my daughter, Earn and I to spend Christmas Eve with them since my son was gone to Maryland and my daughter had other plans. This way I didn’t have to sit home alone for my first Christmas Eve. I was more than a bit apprehensive. He has 3 sisters!

It actually was a lot of fun. New people, new venue? Made a world of difference. Kevin’s family is nuts. Earn made a wonderful new friend in Hannah. Hoping to get Earn and Hannah together Thursday night. I stood there watching those two girls connect like RIGHTNOW. And it was wonderful. They all made me feel welcome and like I’d been part of the family for years instead of the first time meeting all but 2 of them. I told Earn at 4:15 that I was going to church. “You come back here?” Yes, I won’t leave you with these people…..they all LAUGHED……oops.

I left at 430pm and went to church. I had to go. It was one year ago Christmas Eve that I had this overwhelming urge to get to a Christmas Eve Service. The Methodist Church in a neighboring town was suggested to us as one we would like. Nick promised if he got a nap in, that he would go with me. Little did we know that night what chain of events this would put in motion.

Three months and 2 days after going to that service, Nick and I married after being engaged for 20 years. Amazing huh?

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I sat through the service Saturday night, my eyes leaking but I could breathe. The service was very nice. A lot different from a year ago, which I think helped. After it was over, I went up and sat in the chapel again. It is SO different when it’s dark. People kept going in and out of the room so I didn’t get my peaceful time alone. But I did sit there and thank Nick for being in my life.

Back to Joan’s house I went, barely able to see the road I was losing it. I should have just stopped and had Kevin come get me, but I knew he was in the middle of his family Christmas so I wasn’t going to interrupt that.

When I arrived, I kept hearing “Oh! Sue’s back!”, so after 3 times I just hollered ‘SUE’S BACK!!’ so everyone knew. They laughed. Again. *sigh* Easy audience!

I will open my heart to the love that is around me. ~HAL

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So I started something last night…

………..that I think is going to help me.

Yesterday I read an article on 6 ways to help you grieve. I’m thinking they wanted to say grieve productively instead of just wallowing in your pain. But that would be rude….right?

Anyway. The article stated you should write letters to your loved one.

Hmmmmmmmm

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Granted I write in here. Probably not very well but it’s helping me get stuff out of my head and put it somewhere I know I won’t misplace it. Some people have told me to turn this into a book. We’ll see.

I had started a journal thingy that has on the front of the page, questions….’What’s the weather like, in the news today, my concerns, what made me happy today, what did I do to make someone else happy’……that sort of thing. On the other side of the page is a place for thoughts and notes.

Originally, I started writing in this Journal back on June 1. I read it last night and found some things I’d forgotten. June 16th is when we decided Nick wasn’t going to do Chemo anymore. He was too thin, worn out, and just could not take anymore. When we went to Canada and a few of the things we did there. Silly things my grandkids had done.

It stops abruptly soon after we returned from our trip. My last entry is Aug 1. It’s not easy to read that day.

So at 12:30am, I started in writing. Writing to Nick like he’s just gone away on another car parts scavenger hunt. I didn’t think I would have much to say. I answered all the ‘questions’. On some I ran out of room.

And I filled both pages.

I guess I had more to tell him than I thought!

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I know that one day, there will be an angry rant for him leaving me. For throwing me back out on the dating scene like we joked about. I’ll tell him how well HIS pick worked out. I know there will be a day or two when the page will be tear stained.

I miss him.  I’m not the only one.This little guy wanted to ‘Wake up Papa now?’ last time I took him with to the cemetery .

lennox-napping-on-papa-71915 Lucille Lennox and Nick cropped.JPG

I cannot begin to imagine what was going thru his mind. I just know what went thru mine. It left a mess in its wake that I’m still trying to straighten out. Trying to remember everything that needs to be done, things that he used to do. I have car guys calling and stopping in now that want to buy the stuff in my shed and garage. I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed again. Thank God for my car club guys. They are a buffer between me and the buyers that think I’m stupid. I’ve learned how to turn on my heel and walk away. When they pick their jaw up off the ground, they can get off my property.

And yet, Life IS settling down. I’m getting into a routine that will get seriously disrupted when my daughter goes back to Thailand but I’ve done it once, I can do it again. Matteo and I keep in wonderful contact. Corvin even messages me on occasion.

I’m looking forward to filling up my book of letters to Nick.

I think it’s a good idea for me.

It’ll take time, but I’ll feel good again. ~HAL

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