Chchchanges....

I'm meeting the moving company today to inventory my house and take the next step in the move from Houston back to Austin. It's a big and quick change for us, and I've been forced to think a lot about life planning and what my intentions are both personally and professionally.

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What I Believe In

06_29_09.JPGBefore Phil died I could have easily created a long list of my personal beliefs. This list would have included ideas about both the tangible and the intangible; broad concepts and specific ideals; God and mortal beings. There would probably even have been a mention of death and eternity...but only in the abstract because my beliefs about death were untested until August 31, 2005.

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Humbled

06_28_09.jpgI did not want to be a widow. In fact, it is safe to say that I would have liked to be just about anything BUT a widow. It took a while for the reality to set in...I was a WIDOW. Ugh. That word, the dreaded title, the image of a shriveled up person with a love that died, the imagined black veil, the wedding ring that no longer meant married...I hated every single thing about the concept of widowhood.

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The Joy

John Clarke once said, "True love is the joy of life." Now I don't know John but after this past week I have to add on to these words of inspiration he probably spoke many years ago.

Now as I personally know, true love is hands down numero uno in my joy book but the second greatest joy is being around others who have been touched by its graces. This past week, as Nicole mentioned in her blog, we've been at another AWP event. Skydiving with the Golden Knights and doing a "Celebration of our hero's lives" golf tournament was amazing, but seeing the smiles on the faces of my fellow widows and hearing their stories of true love is what makes these outings so amazing.

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Teens Taking up the Slack - Sweet Sixteen.

06_26_09.JPGIt is Anneke’s ‘Sweet Sixteen’ today.

On the one hand, I can’t really believe this day has arrived and her father is still gone. Like somehow, at some point he should have walked in the front door and with little fanfare saying “I’m back.” It has been 8 plus years. She has been without him longer than she had him. I should know better by now.

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Celebrating the Journey at Hole 8

06_25_09.jpgThis week is a big week for the widows in my life- the military widows of The American Widow Project. Wednesday, we had our first annual charity golf tournament for the organization. Each golf hole was dedicated to the soul mate of an AWP member. 

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Masks ....

06_23_09.jpeg.... are very heavy to wear for a long period of time and they tend to make my face sweat.

I really thought that I was done wearing them after Jim died.  I couldn't wear them.  I didn't have the energy to snap them into place and keep them from sliding off.

So I didn't.

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Learning to Focus

06_22_09.JPGA comment made by a special friend about yesterday's post got me thinking about the fact that people who have lost someone instrumental in their lives tend to view the world from a new, and unwanted, vantage point. After Phil's death I remember thinking that death swooped in and stole my rose colored glasses...leaving me with a pair of dark shades instead. I was quite certain that rose was no longer my color.

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The Little Things

06_21_09.JPG"It may seem boring, but it is the boring things I remember the most."
~Russell, Adventure Scout from the animated film Up

My daughter and I went to see the film Up last weekend. The buzz about the film was all good, but the widow buzz held a warning...good film, heart wrenching theme, message that may speak straight to your heart. Once again, the widow buzz did not disappoint.

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In the Park

What is a park to you? A place to walk your dogs, read a book among nature, or just listen to the chirping birds?

For me, I'll be honest with you all....Starting at the age of 16 the park became a place where Michael and I could get away from our parents, sit on a picnic table and have lunch , and do what teenagers do (I'll let your imagination go wild). As we grew older it was a place for us to soak up the sun and read from our favorite authors.

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