Scars

I have been told several times over the past two years I suffer from PSTD. I have never agreed to this diagnosis. I do not feel worthy of it. When I think of this condition I think of soldiers. People who witnessed horrific events. 
My tragedy is mine. I can recall very clearly the fire trucks, police and ambulances passing me, heading to him, only to pull up to it myself. Sitting on the side of the road of my husbands car accident while they look for his body only to find it eight feet deep in muddy water. Kneeling beside his lifeless body in the hospital praying to God while they worked on him. Knowing he was already gone. Laying next to that same shell of a body pleading with him to wake up. These are my memories. They have mold me into this new person I am today. 

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Dinner with Joey

The day before Joey died we went to a BBQ restaurant I used to work at. It had been ages since we had been in there and was good to see some old faces. That was the last meal we had together. Him, our youngest son, and me. I hate the food there probably from working there for so long but Joey loved it. I was getting ready to go out of the town for the night so it was nice to be able to spend some time together before I left. 

 

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Signs and Connections on the Rise

 

SIMG_1497.JPGigns have been on the rise lately, which always makes me feel like things in my life might just be aligning. Just today, while on a drive to go explore up in Cleveland, Mike and I saw at least 5 or 6 signs that related to Drew. The first was at a stop sign. The van in front of us - a Ford Aerostar - had a bumper sticker on it that said “I <3 Flying”. 

 

Now, many of you know, Drew was a helicopter pilot. You might also know that Stars were significant to us… we saw 7 shooting stars the night we decided to start dating. Our initials, were S. T. A. R. No joke. Ever since his death, stars have quite literally been guiding my way. Even to the new love in my life… Mike’s late-wife Megan had, you guessed it, 7 star tattoos. When I first visited their house - it was FILLED with stars. Stars on the walls, stars on the curtains. Stars literally everywhere you looked. I mean you can’t make that stuff up.

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To live

Grieving for your soul mate, your partner, the love of your life. Grieving a life lived past, grieving the present moment without them and grieving the loss of a future that will never be lived. The word grief as we know, is not enough to explain it. The pain of grief being unimaginable until it casts itself as a dark ever shadowing cloud in your once happy life.

 

With what I am about to say next many of you may stop reading this post and that’s perfectly okay. It took me a while to reach this point to say it out loud, but worse it came by hearing of another’s grief, not grief for their partner but rather grief for their own life.

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Particles

“Astronomers have found at least seven Earth-sized planets orbiting the same star 40 light-years away, according to a study published Wednesday in the journal Nature. The findings were also announced at a news conference at NASA Headquarters in Washington.

This discovery outside of our solar system is rare because the planets have the winning combination of being similar in size to Earth and being all temperate, meaning they could have water on their surfaces and potentially support life.

‘This is the first time that so many planets of this kind are found around the same star,’ said Michaël Gillon, lead study author and astronomer at the University of Liège in Belgium.”

 

Sometimes, as a widowed person, I read something or see something or hear something, and the ONLY thing I want in life in that moment, is for my dead husband to not be dead, so he can read or see or hear it too, because that thing Im reading or seeing so reminds me of him. 

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Location, Location, Location

I am writing this a little early this week because come Tuesday my world will shift yet again. Anyone keeping track might note I have been in Virginia since mid-December due to family medical issues, but now I must make my way back to Kona to deal with things there. Before that though I will be in Florida for a week because my stepdaughter and son-in-law are taking the kids to Disney World to escape Mardi Gras in New Orleans and I am happy to have the opportunity to tag along for that fun adventure. The newest grandchild just turned one which I can hardly believe. They all grow up so fast and I want to see them as often as I can.

It also so happens that Orlando is the city where my biological family lives. Yes, this has been another huge thing that has happened in the last few months. I was adopted as an infant, my birth parents having been unwed teenagers in the 60s. And my adoption was never kept a secret from me. I grew up in a loving, stable family and am so grateful for that - I truly have had a wonderful life in that regard. But you always kind of wonder where you came from. So, after 48 years, my biological mother found me - and she is lovely too. You can only imagine how many concerns and hopes she had for me all these years, and it has been an incredible experience to find out about my origins. When this posts, I will have met her face to face, and will also meet most if not all of my five half siblings, three from her, the other two from my biological father who is also looking forward to our face-to-face. Mike and I occasionally wondered about where I came from, and I know he would be tickled pink that I am finally able to answer these questions. I wish he were here to talk about it.

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Ten Years Old

20170210_163711.jpgThis past Friday was Shelby’s 10th birthday.  She’s reached a decade worth of life at this point.  I wish she would stop growing up, but at the same time, I am incredibly proud of her, and excited every time she learns something new or changes a little bit. 

 

To think of what this little girl has experienced in her 10 years is astonishing.  She’s seen, felt, and lost so much more than I had at that age.  I was born healthy and robust.  I had, and still have, both of my parents.  Neither of them ever had any type of illness.  One or both of them were there around the clock in the first decade of my life.  I had a traditional midwestern upbringing, with a tradesman father and a stay-at-home mom.  I had a large family, full of cousins and aunts and uncles and grandparents that I saw all of the time.  We took a week-long vacation every summer, and usually went to visit my grandmother in Florida in the winter for a week.  All-in-all, it was a healthy, good experience.

 

Shelby, on the other hand…

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Day trip for the soul

This week we had some downtime and a day off school. So my sister and I took the kids to great wolf lodge for the night. This place holds lots of great and special memories for us as a family. We started going there when my now 7 year old daughter was just a baby. All the kids have been with their dad and have their own memories of being there. 


Now we are creating new memories together and I'm learning to be ok with that. I am realizing that this is part of moving forward. You have to continue to live and have wonderful times because that's living and that's what our loved ones would want. 

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Imperfect and Growing

Purple_Imperfecion_Flower.jpgI can’t say enough about this whole adventure into counseling the past few weeks. Last week, Mike shared about how our first session went for him, and I’d like to share some feelings of my own about our second session on Friday, and about what I am learning along the way.

 

Firstly, I’ve been in therapy for a good majority of my adult life. But this one, this one is a first for me too. It is the first time I’ve gone to counseling with someone else by my side. I’ll admit, it made me nervous too at first. I too worried about what we might uncover as we willfully opened up to letting someone help us. I worried there would be darker stuff there than either of us knew before. That maybe somehow this would make things worse, not better? I’m not sure really, but either way, the whole thing did feel just a tad risky, even though I know we are tending to our problems very early on.

 

It has been wonderful though. So wonderful. 

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Patterns

It was an interesting 10 days. It was a week and a half of guessing games, assumptions,

And jumping to conclusions. (on my part) It was a very emotional 10 days, and it was 10 days I do not wish to repeat again. But it came with a lot of lessons, and things that I probably needed to improve on. This one’s all on me.

 

In this weird version of life, the one I didn’t ask for where Im a widowed person and where

My husband and I don’t get to have our future together, it’s the simple things that mean the most to me, and that I begin to rely on. Probably the biggest of those things has been the friendship I have developed over the past year and a half, largely via daily phone chats, with a widower that I feel a strong connection with. I have developed feelings for this person, and he knows this, and agrees that there is something there between us. But he isn’t in a place right now to explore that, or to think about being in a relationship with someone. That is okay. Our friendship  and our connection means the world to me. 

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