Thursday, October 31, 2013

Is This What Life Goes on Means?

Ladies, does suddenly alone and mourning get complicated by the now, I need a handyman for all those honey do’s?
The last couple of years with Kirt in the hospital so much, everything else received the back burner care, so now my physical world is falling on me. Both vehicles need repair, my roof needs cleaning and resealing, the house needs painting inside and out. I could go on, but you get the picture. And with the flat tire on the car in the beating sun each day, I’m doing myself no favors.
I ran into a guy my husband and I met a few times at a friend’s house. He told his long tale of woe be gone and no money. “Can you change a flat tire for me and give me a quote on cleaning and resealing my roof?”  Of course, he said it would be no problem at all, but he couldn’t do it until this, that and the other happened. “Okay, when is that?” I said with a smile. He spoke of jobs he had done and what he had achieved. Next week Tuesday he’d be available, but definitely next Wednesday, a week from today.
The morning before he received a text that read pick you about ten thirty tomorrow. We’ll be fixing a flat first, signed with a smiley face.  That evening he called to say, “Gee, uh, the gal who owns the store I work at thinks we’ll be too busy the day before Halloween, (tomorrow) to spare me; is that going to be a problem? “I suppose thrift stores are busy the day before Halloween; of course, it’s not a problem. I’ll think of something to do tomorrow, no big deal.” Thursday he promised would be the day to fix the flat and get a few other chores done.
Okay, so the day didn’t go as planned, Thursday was just a day away. All the other things scheduled around the tire being fixed could be rescheduled, but Friday is committed, well, that left Thursday all day; what else could go wrong?
Thursday morning, 9AM, the phone rang. “Good morning,” I answered thinking he had questions about materials he would need to change the tire or something.  “How are you today?” I inquired. “Well, my boss’s sister needs a ride to work and then she’ll need a ride home from work this afternoon, so today’s really not a good day. Can we do this next week?”  He wanted to know.
”No,” I have too few good days left in this life to waste waiting on someone who doesn’t respect the commitment he made to me. He could have dropped this woman at her job come to my house and been home in time; why was that too much for him, hmm, I need to pass on this; don’t you think?

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Life After Honey

This starting a new life stuff is so hard. People tell me how I should feel and what's going to happen, like they know. Or they tell me how blessed I am to have had such a love at all and I should be grateful. I look at these people as they go on; do you know what loss means? Of course I am grateful to have had such a love. Forty-five years is almost a lifetime. What's new is not having that man, touching him, hearing his laugh. I miss his voice, the warm loving tone; how I felt when we were together.
Yes, I’ll have it in my mind and heart, but please, it’s not the same. As they tell me how wonderful these memories are going to be, I stare blankly into their faces; do they know they’re selling me the consolation prize? Just be glad and you’re lucky are pretty sucky phrases.
Essentially, these dissertations end with I'm strong, I'll be fine, I just need to do such and such. 
Other widows don’t usually do that to each other, they know how intensely personal the loss is. One day I said, “This Sunday will be number thirteen since Kirt died.” My friend had a horrified expression, “You shouldn't count!”
“But, I have to count,” I replied. Her face softened with understanding, “Count if you want to,” was all she said. Even my mother and I, who have an uncomfortable relationship, we've bonded over the loss of our husbands, miracle of miracles.
In my acquaintance of other widows, I've noticed ways of handling life after; surround yourself with family and to stay safe in physical and emotional proximity, drugs and booze, gambling, turning mean and bitter is a choice, but I’m thinking about going back to work. I always liked working, but I liked hanging around with my husband more.  
So the big question I ask myself is what am I going to do?

And by the way, I’m glad those people who lecture care; thanks.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Get a LIfe

In the middle of an island, my honey and me, it was heavenly, but alone it’s just a pretty place to be lonely. With Kirt’s death not yet three months away, the dawn of realization that he’s not coming back impacts differently. When he died it felt like a skyscraper made of bricks fell down on my head brick by brick, smashing, hurting me.
I live in a cavern in the rubble with my loving pack and bricks still hitting my head, but also moments of being my old self. The weight of the now duller pain feels oppressive at times. I know that if I don’t stay active, the open option of depression looms large.
There is a segment of humanity I think of as “dog people” or animal people, if you will, we love dogs/animals more than most. As a certified “dog woman” in good standing, I've spent the last few years trying to discover where I could do the most good for the Puerto Rican Island Dogs or “Satos,” as they’re known here. So far, I know what I don’t want to do.
Turning my home into a shelter is out of the question; five dogs and no fence is insane enough for me, thank you. After thirty years in the dog training among other dog related enterprises, I’d rather not teach people, who can be so in love with their preconceived training notions that they don’t hear what’s actually being said. We fall short in the relationship department with dogs with few exceptions. Anyway, I’m sure there’s a bunch of decent trainers.
Ultimately, I decided that the animal activists here needed help raising funds. After a few false starts, my first effort, Photo Day for Amigos de Los Animales came in as a decent success. The pictures by Silver and Pixel that I saw were lovely, so we had happy participants. Other than the manager of Bamboobei turning off the water in the middle of the day, we had no problems; no, that’s not true, our venue, a restaurant, decided to not serve food that day , but drinks were served late in the afternoon, just another learning experience. All this kept me busy enough to begin to blunt my pain.
Our next fund raiser, a party scheduled in October at Bamboobei is cancelled lacking of venue. I’m grieving not crazy. My next few weeks of focus on something else just flushed; what now?
 Some are beginning to say things like: new page, new chapter, new book. Those who encourage me are right, I need a new life; how to begin again after my love story fails me.     

Thursday, October 3, 2013


The door slams, my eyes widen; the door wasn’t locked, was it? Why didn’t I put the door stop down as usual?  The handle doesn’t move, I’m locked out of the house. No food, no phone, no water, okay, what do I do now?
After greeting Lola, Lucky and Robert Redford, this morning I grabbed a cup of coffee and my laptop to start the day. One cup of joe later, it’s time to have another and some breakfast, when a gust of wind hurtled down the valley to wreak havoc on my day.
Was this divine intervention, Kirt’s spirit messing with me or just happenstance of nature? Regardless, I’m waiting to be rescued by friends, my wonderful friends.
As I sit on the porch overlooking God’s lush creation, my blood sugar is dropping with sweaty fingers and, of course, a big headache. The blue sky littered with sooty white clouds seems a metaphor for my life, thanks to my true blue husband. We were good for each other. He was good for me. We made the best out of every situation, our learning experiences.
They say to be happy we must release the past and live in the present. Is my stomach growling, I haven’t heard that in an age. Most of the good things that have happened to me happened during our lives together. I pray for grace.
Marcie just emailed that help is on the way. A smile of gratitude sweeps my face; nothing like problems to keep you focused in the moment. Is that the lesson? Maybe not, I woke up early happy to be visiting a school with my friend Alma and her puppies. Other than being sore from my workout, I was having a good day in the present. Instructions from the universe are a definite FIFINO to me. I’ll think about it some more.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Alone, just me, all by myself sounds small, feels lonely.
The breeze rustles through a wall of green.
Dogs pant in the afternoon heat.
         “Holding on to the past, cause of Depression,”
The headline read.
Every yesterday for a long time, I heard the words.
“I love you!” And got kissed.
Today thunder rumbles down the valley, as
Sun pierces the air. The clouds are coming.
No kisses.
A motorcycle backfires down the road,
Run, run, run, run, run it screams.

Without you who am I?