I'll Meet You There ...

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

NEW YEAR ~ IFY GOALS ~ HAZY REALITIES

Tonight will be the end of this year. Tonight will also be the 2nd time I have welcomed a New Year without Bob walking into the future morrow alongside me.

I miss kissing him Happy New Year ~ I miss not waking up to his beautiful twinkling eyes watching me wake up and his beautiful mouth smiling that sexy smile of his. I miss his long arms reaching out to pull me into his manly chest for a New Year cuddle.

The past 489 days have been surreal to say the least … and also illuminating: when we joined our lives together August 27th, 1974 – and up to the fragmenting culmination of the morning of December 14th, 2018, I couldn’t comprehend living without him; but as 2019 dawned and hurled me into my new solo lobo life, I learned that it is absolutely possible to survive and thrive without love or passion in my life now. Bob gave me all his love for 44 years, and that overflowing love is enough to carry me forward.

Bob’s love still nourishes my life. The confidences his love instilled in me is giving me the courage to build my new life as I step across 2019’s threshold and into 2020.

Last New Year’s Eve, I was gasping for breath. Tears flowed like the Niagara Falls. When the tears abated sometime in March of 2019, anger kicked in –and that helped me become the fighter I needed to be to rise above the drowning waves of grief from then until now. I wasn’t angry at Elohim. I wasn’t angry at Bob. It did take time to get past the anger towards Candy Scott & Ron Cook; I won’t candy-coat that: it was fricking H.A.R.D. to rise above it. I got angry at the injustice of legal bureaucratic bullshit I had to wade through to find solid ground again. I was angry with the way people tried to manipulate my situation to use and abuse me, thinking me too grief-stricken to notice. I resented the hell out of being treated like an aging imbecile when Widow Brain Fog would render my thinking abilities sketchy, paralyzing me with post-traumatic stress syndrome behaviors.

THANK ELOHIM FOR HIS UNWAVERING AND FAITHFUL LOVE AND MERCY!

Thank Yeshua for true friends.

Thank You, Elohim for putting love back in my life.

As 2019 begins to fizzle out, and 2020 comes closer and closer, the dawning of a New Year doesn’t feel as threatening or as painful as the last dawning. I feel as though I am moving into a deeper understanding of the relationship Bob & I now share: a strangeness that weirdly deepens the bond of our love, though our union has ended. I am surprised at how suddenly I have arrived at this emotional destination. 382 days is not a heck of a long time … yet, it is a lifetime. I believe – Bob believed; and our Faith teaches – that he is still very much alive, and often present, though unattainable. His physical death changed our relationship; but it did not end it. And that is what I solidly feel: and that is why I can forge ahead with a peaceful confidence of rebuilding my life in separateness.

Comprehension dawned with the waning of 2019.

Me is still we though we live different lives, in different realms. And, on occasions, when Bob is not riding the clouds (I like to imagine him riding the clouds as he water-skied – skillfully, all-out, beautiful and god-like (John 10:33 38) ;-)), our worlds do overlap and he walks beside me as does Yeshua (Hebrews 12:1-2). There are days when I do feel him near, and see signs he was near – like 2 planets that orbit the same sun: every so often, our paths cross, and the vastness that separates us doesn’t seem so empty. I believe that Yeshua walks with me every day – guiding me, watching me … and I also believe that there are days Bob’s presence walks with me also: not in the same way … but there, just the same. There is comfort for me in those times.

As 2019 marched on and I became more confident in the accomplishments I made, carving out a space for myself in the life I was shifted to 382 days ago; I have found acceptance with the way our new relationship is now, in my new life. I will always wish I could reach out to Bob. I will always miss his warm and  loving embrace. I will always miss his smiles and his laughter. There will always be some part of our life together that I will miss. But there are also tangible residue of that life we spent together that will never, never leave me.

That is what 2019 taught me.

And that is what will be going with me into 2020 ~ at the midnight hour.

When there was something I needed to know throughout our life together, Bob never stepped on me or chastised me; but he would often ask, “So. Did you learn anything?” In that way, Bob was like Yeshua. And, like Yeshua’s example, Bob’s example is also still teaching me. His physical death taught me as much as his physical life did.

As a widowed person, emotions are constantly shifting because our new life takes sudden and speed-breaking turns on the freeway of life that can be confusing, isolating, and downright terrifying as we are thrown from one stage of our new life into another – trying to find a welcoming destination where we can again find “home”. Bob was my “home”; Bob was my only family. 2019 drove home the point that my new life restart in pretty much ALL areas of my new life means that there is still a LOT to rebuild and built anew: probably way more than I can grasp at the moment.

The first half of 2019 were months of aimlessness – which I was told by seasoned widows and widowers – is pretty normal, and even vital, after such a major trauma as becoming a spousless spouse. The last half of 2019 ended up in my hopping around from one thing to another … or just wandering about … with no sense of direction, but a whole lot of hope that eventually my faulty GPS would catch a signal and start leading me to a real destination.

As I stand on the cusp of a waning 2019, I am seeing life in color again: true friendship and continuance of Bob’s overflowing love in my life, has eased me back into the Land of a Thousand Dances ~ and I am dancing in the rain again instead of sitting in a puddle and crying.


So.

Yes, Babe ~ I have learned a lot since you stepped off this planet.

And I will learn more in 2020; you will be proud of me ;-)



Monday, December 30, 2019

BE BOLD! DO YOUR STUFF

NOW WHAT?



The decision has been made, but it’s not that easy to do.

The looming question remains, “Now what?”

THAT has not changed.

I do have some ideas that I will start working through in 2020 – but those things will take time to work out; and while I do have lots of time on my hands … I’d kinda like to get the ball set in motion and rolling: sooner, rather than later, now that I have decided to embrace my new life, and get moving in that direction.


After all, I’m not getting younger (having just passed another birthday marker yesterday, and every minute counts.
(https://jeastofeden.blogspot.com/2019/12/today-is-my-birthday-d.html)

I think the best course of action, until something {clicks} and momentum kicks in, is to make a Monthly Bucket List – and check things off as the days, weeks, and months pass.


Whatever I do though has to be done on a frugal shoestring budget: I can do that; Bob and I did that for 44 years, and we had a pretty good, fun, adventurous life :-D Admittedly, the shoestring was shortened significantly before 2018 fizzled out; but, I am not in dire straits financially, and with calculated planning and careful saving up for big events, I believe I can pull it off ;-) After all, that was one of my major contributions to our marital success: I planned, “found” the $$$, and Bob got us to our planned destinations.

The thing is … I always did those things AS A COUPLE. My fun and good-time-adventures were shared happenings/events: that is not the case now. My husband is no longer here; the things we enjoyed aren’t as appealing as a solo lobo: situations are more complicated and circumstances have been severely altered. Also, it’s been a loooong time between 1974 solo events and the lobo limping of 2019: the one thing I for sure learned all of 2019 is that I am not sure HOW to go about setting up a lifetime solo lifestyle. The tail end of 2018 was surreal – all of 2019 was a limbo land in which I moved through in survival mode, barely engaging in actions or peopling interactions. 2020 is literally hours away … and I will be stepping into space, hoping to land someplace acceptable and accommodating to my new life.


I will be leaving behind every hoped for adventure Bob & I planned to do before our life together ended in a hospital room, in another State: we did hope to do more traveling (even got enhanced passport driver's licenses), but his physical dying was not ever {The Plan}: we never saw that happening coming down the Pike. WE will NEVER go on another fun filled daytripping adventure, together. I will be shelving memories of shared adventures (until appointed grieving periods set aside specifically for remembrances) for the time being. ALL my future fun, adventures, and memories will be made as a solo lobo

It’s scary.

And people don’t understand why I am second-guessing myself.

I never second guessed myself before becoming a Widow. Before widowhood, I always knew exactly what I wanted – and 99% of the time, got it. I knew as soon as I set eyes on Bob that he was {it}: I wanted him! I had to wait 7 years to get him, but as soon as he crossed my path again and made himself available: I SNAGGED HIM. LOL. I knew the kind of life I wanted – I shared that desire with Bob: and we made it happen; Bob gave me a good life full of faithful and devoted love, and creature comforts that suited us and our income. We had a good life together for 44 years. I have a good life now, all things considered.

But, my new life has me second-guessing myself: A LOT. Too much, really; and every decision I have to make. I am not comfortable with the second-guessing. I got comfortable having Bob in my life to share things with: I got used to joint decisions. It felt good to have someone to share my life with – ALL my life.

Solo loboing can be liberating … but it can also be daunting.


Which begs the question, a.g.a.i.n.: “now what?”

Hopefully the dawning of January 2020 will shed some light, and bring some answers.

FACE 2020 BRAVELY


MAKING TIME TO SMELL THE ROSES

I was listening to music tonight, and brought up Joe Cocker’s “Unchain My Heart” … and things started falling like dominoes in my thought process.


Aside from the fact that I like Joe Cocker – and I like that song: Bob is not the one that has my heart chained up: I am. I’m the only one that can logically unchain my heart. Bob is in another realm; living his life in a parallel universe. While he is absolutely aware of what is happening in my life, in the realm I live in here on Earth, he can’t in effect affect my life anymore.

On any level.

Stuff just got real in real time: time to let go and get on with it.

Time to unchain my heart and start living a real life again – not the half-assed life I have been stumbling through since March of 2018.


So.

Letting go of Bob the first time was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. In my entire life.

Letting go, now, a second time … is just as hard.


And as necessary as immediately clearing his side of the closet of his clothing after coming home from OHSU, 2018, a Widow: I knew if any of it stayed in the closet it would seriously undermine my survival. And Bob knew that too – we had talked of the “what ifs” for decades: I knew Bob would be okay with the closet purging. It took longer to clear the dresser of his underwear and jeans; that probably sounds stupid, but that is the reality of the situation and circumstances.

Later came other personal items that slowly left the shed and house.

Now it is time to push past the memories and tamp them down: time to stop dredging them up and reliving them every day. I can never forget Bob – but I can stop fanning the embers of those memories into raging flames that end up devastating me emotionally and wreak my heart physically by the days’ end.

While sorrow will always be present, I do believe it can be managed – after all, Yeshua sorrowed; yet He successfully got on with a purposeful life. If He did it: I CAN TOO.

I have decided that this year, I am designating specific time slots on specific days at specific ties of the year to revive the memories of Bob and relive those times: September 5th at exactly 12:20’noon (the first time I ever saw Bob’s face when he walked past the school corner after lunch – Cathlamet, WA); March 27th at exactly 10 PM (when Bob walked through the front door of his house where Doug had thrown his kegger and I carded Bob – Cathlamet, WA); April 19th at exactly 7 PM (when Bob stepped through my mother’s front door to take me out on our first date – Cathlamet, WA); July 6th at exactly 8 PM (when we bought our Wedding rings at Zale’s on Commerce – in Longview, WA); August 24th at exactly 4 PM (when we applied for our Marriage License at City Hall – in Cathlamet, WA); August 27th at exactly 9 PM (when we were married at Judge Hall’s house in Skamokawa, WA); May 24th at exactly 12:27’noon (when our daughter was born at Cowlitz General Hospital in Longview, WA); November 4th around 5 PM (when Bob arrived and held our newborn granddaughter at the hospital – in Aberdeen, WA); December 26th around Noon (when Bob walked our daughter to her groom at Lake Sacajawea – in Longview, WA); August 15th around 5 PM (when we finally made Vegas, NV – and Bob held our newborn grandson); June 5th (our last vacation together – the Olympic Peninsula, WA State); September 3rd (me honoring Bob’s enacted DNR Order at Peace Health Hospital – Longview, WA: we nearly lost him then); December 14th at exactly 8:05 AM (Bob’s last day on Earth at OHSU, Portland OR); August 30th around Noon (Bob’s Birthday; and the day his Celebration of Life took place at Eden Valley, WA). These dates and times will be revered, and set aside to honor Bob’s life and the life I shared with him … to remember, reflect, look at pictures, listen to voice recordings, view pictorial DVD’s and phone videos of him … and allow my thoughts to indulge in the tapping of intimacies of remembered married moments: I NEVER want to forget him, his face, his mannerisms, his touch, or his voice! For these few brief remembrances, Bob’s essence will live again in memory.


This will be my own grieving ritual; and may, over time, be subject to change (but for now, it stands as noted above).


But the rest of the year will be free to focus on what I need to rebuild my life … I will be unwinding the chains that I have wrapped around my heart as a safeguard – which has now, 1 year and 16 days later, become a crippling hindrance to real living.

When Bob walked beside me on earth, and loved me like a man, his love and passion was possible – he cared: deeply. But, Bob is no longer here – he can’t “set me free”; he can’t “let me go”. I HAVE TO set me free; I have to let the memories go because as wonderful as they are … they are literally killing any chance I have of moving forward in real life, in real time. I cannot build a new life, in the present, if I am trapped in my memories of a past that has no future. I can only fully live in the present.

When we started dating, Bob had a dart board – and when he wasn’t teaching me to golf, or we weren’t shooting a couple pool games at the Arcade (or taverns), we were shooting darts in his livingroom: I was tomboy competitive, and got good at all of those things ;-)

My goal for 2020, is to aim FOR and score a bullseye on rebuilding a new life.


O.N.E.D.A.Y.A.T.A.T.I.M.E.


In the moment; of the present day.


To start, I have transferred the phone videos to laptop picture files so they aren’t at my fingertips on the phone, and I won’t be tempted to replay them over and over, when I’m out and about. It’s time to get serious about moving forward. I have Bob’s phone – and thankful for that (it’s a tangible link to the fact that he WAS ALIVE AND MINE) – but, it is also a reminder that he is no longer here: he is not at home. He has been gone from home for 472 days. He can’t care for me in the realm I exist in anymore. He can’t love me no more on the level my life is on, in the now.

Bob loved live and Bob loved me: Bob's goal our entire married life was to embrace life and to make me happy – Bob would not/does not want me to waste my life with my heart chained to the past.


Bob would be the last person to want me to get lost in grief and walk through life under the invocation of a past that chains me to bittersweet grieving misery: Bob gave me joyous love for 44 years – it would pain his heart to think that his memory was causing my heart misery. He hung into life as long as he did, to help ease my letting go; so he could go Home without worry I was being left behind, with a shattered heart! It dishonors his memory to walk around with a chained heart.


I was brave for him the entire time he was dying.


Now, I need to be brave for me, to face living a life separate from memories  that hamstring me and keep me in survival mode; my heart chained to a bittersweet abstraction.


It’s time to let go.

Elohim!


Give me strength …

Yeshua, walk with me in this garden if life; help me find the time to make time to smell the roses and appreciate the life I was blessed with while fully living the life I am blessed with.

Help me to be a healthy embodiment of my husband’s love legacy.


Amen.

Sunday, December 29, 2019

TODAY IS MY BIRTHDAY :-D

Today is my 63rd Birthday :-D




I don’t feel 63 …


… and I don’t think I look 63.

Not bad for "an old bat", huh? LMAO

I definitely do not act like I am 63.

I've always been a handful ;-)
Thankfully, those who love me enjoy excitement in their lives!
Bob's love kept me young-minded & physically limber ...
Bob always treated me like the Queen of our humble castles. It is GOOD to be Queen ;-)

I woke up this morning to the sound of fog horns tooting on the river, and a steady falling wet mist; I like the sound of the fog horns; but the mist played hell with my baby fine hair this morning when I stepped out with friends – I was treated to a “birthday girl outing” that ended with lunch at Sizzler’s.

Yeshua and Bob helped in that celebration too, in making sure my special day was a special day – Yeshua created me (Psalm 139:14-14) and cares for me as the apple of His eye (Deuteronomy 32:10 & Psalm 17:8); Bob loved me – I am the luckiest woman alive! Yeshua and Bob both brought my wonderful friends into my life; both Yeshua and Bob were walking beside me today; loving me and sending love my way: I had a great time with our loving friends, who – even though are still couples – love and appreciate me enough to consider me ‘family’ and treat me accordingly. And I received phone texts and FB notifications all day long wishing me a happy birthday :-D

Life is good … this old hippie never expected to make it this far into the future.

Me- July 1973

I love You, Yeshua – thank You for loving me and giving me life.

 
Yeshua saved me in 1964 - he literally saved my life; I won my 1st Bible in a Scripture slap-down contest in 1966 … and it was mailed to me 4 months later, after my family had moved to Washington State. I read it every day. Life was written on every page~life took root, and blossomed in my life.
Yeshua made sure His Word was always in my hand – this Bible was pressed into my hand at a street festival in Astoria, Oregon, the summer of 1971. It went to school with me every day. I grew in Yeshua; and Yeshua grew in me; He prospered my life.

I love you, Babe – thank you for loving me, and giving me a better life than I ever dared dream for.

 
And again, Elohim answered my prayers. Bob was the perfect match (gift) for me. Our meeting was righteous, and our marriage was blessed. In every way possible, Elohim favored me and gave me an exceptional life - from solid salvation, to true & pure love.

My life to date has been a wonderful life. As a Daughter of the Most High God, I am highly favored and abundantly blessed :-D

Today is a lot different than last year, when I was a new widow, 15 days old (https://jeastofeden.blogspot.com/2018/12/low-key-birthday.html).

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!


Saturday, December 28, 2019

THE HOT DOG HURDLE


My Supper tonight: 2 hot dogs - I have avoided eating a hot dog - hot dogs was Bob's favorite food ... he was eating hot dogs almost exclusively when we started dating 45 years ago. In fact, I teased him about it because he never deviated from at least 2 hot dogs in any given day. Eventually, he started eating other foods when we married because I went on a kitchen strike until he agreed to sample a variety of meals; I was tired of hot dogs, mac 'n cheese, pizza, and San Francisco Rice-A-Roni.
That said, ever since December 14th, 2018, I have studiously avoided even walking past the hot dog isle in the stores - I just could not face it without crying. And, I have been cooking and eating meals Bob refused to eat ... and when I do bring home take-out meals, I always bought things Bob didn't like to eat: this is my way of dealing with things as they are. In order to heal and keep my sanity, I had to distance myself from things that would constantly chip away at the resealing of the cracks in my life. Hot dogs was one of those things I avoided. Even now, I tear up.
But, tonight, I decided "would be the night" I slayed the hog dog shakiness and got past the lump in the throat - I managed to bite-chew-swallow without choking, crying, or vomiting it back up.
Bob's pancreatitis was a rare type of inflammatory disorder – his attack was not food or alcohol related at all. It was stress related. Even so, even the thought of a hot dog; and a beer with Supper was making me nervous! Rationally, I KNEW that neither a hot dog, or a single beer could seriously hurt me; and it has no relation at all to my widowhood.
But it kinda freaked me out.
More things to hurdle in my move to rebuild my life …
It may sound irrational to some, but the grieving/healing process is irrational.
One step at a time.
One day at a time.
One scab at a time.

DAWN'S FIRST LIGHT



For 7 years I dreamed.

And played this record.

Then, suddenly HE appeared.

And my dream became a reality.

A 44 year reality.

Thank YOU, Lord, for answering my prayers.

Bob was a good man.

Bob gave me love.

Bob gave me a good life.

And now, like before: whenever I want him, all I have to do is dream ...


I LOVE YOU JUST THE WAY YOU ARE


Bob was the only person who ever loved me just because I exist.


  
  
 

And I loved Bob just the way he was, too.

I love him still ... and I always will.

  
 
 
 
 

We didn’t step on each other – we didn’t try to change the other; we loved each other just the way they were: warts, and all.

But we each changed: we became better people because of the love we received from each other. Because we were both loved unconditionally by the other, we strove to be better people – as an individual person: for each other; for US as a whole.

We didn’t change to try to fit the other’s futuristic perception of us … we changed to become better people – individually – and THAT became change for the betterment of US; and our marriage thrived and strengthened.

Love was the foundation.

And US was a continual work in progress.

We loved each other just the way we were – in the moment.



Love was the foundation.

Tomorrow is my 63rd Birthday.

I miss Bob – Bob was my greatest gift.


I miss the love Bob lavished on me.

Bob was the only person who ever loved me just because I exist.


How does one rebuild a life where love no longer exists?