Those Damn Little Things.

Pollyanna had a Pity Party. Just when I thought I had this grief thing down to manageable pieces, just when I thought I stuck the landing — I landed on my butt.  There was no big crisis; nothing I could say “Oh, geez, now why did THAT happen.” Nope. There was just an avalanche of little teeny things that crept up and smacked me upside the head. Was I oblivious or just naive enough to think I had grief nailed.

Boohoo.

I almost didn’t write this post. I didn’t want to burst the bouncy bubble of my usual optimistic posts but into every life some rain must fall and we have all had our share of floods. As I’ve said before, I might talk a good game but no one would accuse me of having it all together. That said, put on your slickers, kids, here we go.

Life is hardly predictable or neat. Each time we think it might be, things pop up, like a gophers in a mine field, and knock you on your keister. All the things and people that once made us so happy are the very things that can take us down when they are no longer there, simply because — they are no longer there. Sure, those sweet spirits will eventually bring only healing memories, smiles and warm, fuzzy feelings but until then, things can be iffy.

Trauma creates changes we don’t choose. Healing is about creating change we do choose.

This fall, It will be 3 years since Elvis (otherwise known as my husband) left the building. It’s hard to believe all that time has past, yet here I am, folks. Just me. And sure, I’m doing okay, or as fine as you can be after your life went off a cliff. Every person who’s ever had a rude coupling with loss gets it, boy, do they get it. After loss, you may be under construction for awhile; you might even need a few critical renovations. Still, as time goes by, tears become less copious, days become less brutally empty and even laughter sneaks back when you’re not looking. Slowly, you find a new normal but even then, there are always those days some dopey ‘little things’ pop up. They use their inside voice to say, “hey, remember how it used to be?” and then your new normal becomes a freak show. Now isn’t that special. Continue reading

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It’s always something.

Couple-1024x684Alone – sucks. I can’t speak for all the people who navigate that space so seamlessly every day. Some even choose that solo state (big kudos from me!) but it never would have been my first choice by a long shot. I fell or was thrown in that lake, kicking and screaming.

Most days I’m doing pretty okay, thank you. But then one thing, one little insignificant thing, can set off a really lovely pity party – minus the balloons and ice cream. In another lifetime, I wouldn’t even notice innocent gestures that I saw a hundred times. But like it or not (and I don’t) I’m in THIS life now, so everything takes on a different meaning. And things that grab your heart seem to be everywhere – even at a simple 5 year old T-ball game.

I was living in the moment, watching those earnest little people running bases full speed ahead, trying like heck to hit the ball off the tee hard enough to make it actually GO somewhere. When one of those kids is an irrepressible grandson, well, enough said.  So I hung out near the dugout, getting a bird’s eye view of his swing (he’s got a great arm, by the way) until I got a glimpse of another view.

One of the family, also widowed, has a girlfriend now. Living on a ranch in the middle of nowhere USA, we are all glad for him. He’s a really sweet man who deserves caring companionship. (Don’t we all..)  Anyway, as I glanced up, his hands were tenderly massaging the back of the woman’s neck as she stroked his arms. My first reaction? Eeee-ooo – family outing! But then I thought of my own back massager who I’ve missed like breath and air. I got it. Continue reading

You’re not in Kansas Anymore.

Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable.

The Wizard of Oz

yellow-brick-road

Turn off the lights. Lock the doors. Head upstairs. Simple. Been there, done that routine more nights than I can count. It’s repeated nightly in every household around the globe. Yet these days, even simple routines — suck. Every nuance screams I’m in a different world now – a world of one. My life made a major detour to the flip side of Oz.

It’s hard not to remember, as I climb the stairs, not only how I found my husband lying there just months ago, but how this home once rang with voices. The only thing ringing now are my ears from the buzzing lack of sound. Like the train tracks I had to draw when I was learning perspective, endless nights just like this, stretch ahead of me. But, when you think about it, don’t most things come down to that – perspective. Continue reading