I WON'T BACK DOWN

Monday, September 30, 2019

ORAL SURGERY


My day started out with a hope and a prayer … and Elohim was faithful.

I hoped there would be no snafu’s: there wasn’t ;-)

I prayed that Elohim would get me from home to my destination … and back again without undue notice from the patrolling unmarked police cruisers: everything went smoothly.

I prayed that the procedure would be accomplished speedily and with as little pain involved as possible: I was favored.

My view from 'the chair'. LOL The bright, colorful Fall leaves helped redirect my thoughts.
Prepped and waiting for the torture to begin ...

I prayed that the $$$ set aside for this procedure would be enough: it was, with leftover to spare :-D

Just got home a few minutes ago – I feel like a Mack truck is parked on my face ... but, other than that, everything seems to be going as smoothly as possible. There is no noticeable bruising or swelling. The procedure WAS kinda torturous: the hallow shaft did not come out easily; there was a LOT a roughness involved in extracting it. But, it is out now, and I am relieved. The pain – at the moment seems to be tolerable.

My pain killers.
If I don't end up with 'dry socket', the pain really is tolerable. Painful; but doable.

I got a text from Cheryl telling me she was thinking of me and hoping everything goes well; I appreciate her and her thoughts  she is a good friend to me. But I miss cuddling up next to Bob and letting him comfort me.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

SUNDAY FUNDAY 3


Woke up this morning feeling like getting out of the house – so that is what I did; I perked a pot of coffee, filled Bob’s thermos … grabbed HIS tall travel coffee cup we bought on our Vegas trip 5 years ago to see our newborn grandson … and beat feet ;-)


The car’s nose – pulling out of Heron Pointe – aimed towards “home” – the region I consider ‘home’, anyways; so that is what I rolled with. I always let the car take me where it will. Driving along Ocean Beach Highway, I saw 1 landslide by County Line that had had trees across the road – looked like someone cut them out of the way with a power saw; so, I proceeded forward cautiously. It’s that time of year.

Cresting the hill that drops into Cathlamet where we spent the first half of our life together as man and wife, I nipped into Gragg’s and grabbed some chicken tenders and a box of peanut butter Ritz crackers – peanut butter because I like peanut butter, and ritz crackers because Bob loved Ritz crackers; to my way of thinking, not only are the crackers tasty, but they kinda – in some weird way – symbolize Bob & me. I know … I am a weirdo. And that is okay. I am embracing my weirdness. Bob loved my weirdness. If I ever embarrassed him, he never (unlike our kids & his entire family) never let on – he just loved on me ;-)

Drinking my coffee in Bob’s travel coffee cup and crossing the 700 ft./elevation KM, I watched falling leaves flutter in their downward spirals and skip across the road – the dancing leaves made me smile; and I saw 2 landslides coming into in Graysriver, and 1 wreck by the old Torpa house. It looked like it had been an eventful week here, in this corner of the Pacific Northwest:

This spot of the road always makes me smile – early on, in our married life, I saw 2 tiny bear cubs here one afternoon we were out-and-about, and asked Bob to pullover so I could get a better look at them. They were really quite small and SO cute, so I jumped out to snap off a picture … AND INSTANTLY FELT BOB’S HAND ON THE BACK OF MY NECK hauling me back into the pickup lickety-split. BOY, WAS I MAD! But, Bob was right – mama bear came barreling out of the trees and stood over her babies. And, I steamed over that missed picture all day long. LMAO
So, you see ... a loooong time ago, before there was Bob in my life, I was a fearless tigress with a gypsy soul. I need to reconnect with that long ago me.

Going through the Covered Bridge, and over the Loop Road that ties into the Altoona/Pillar Rock road, was out of the way; but it was a nice Fall day, even with the rain falling – it wasn’t falling hard, just a lazy rainfall to match the lazy-kinda-day. It just felt good to pass through the Covered Bridge and take the round-about-way to my destination; so, I did it. I always liked being down here in this region – it has always felt {at home} here: as far back as I can recall after moving out West in 1966, the Graysriver/Pillar Rock area (in the general vicinity of Eden Valley) … always ‘called’ to me – even before I knew Bob, I was coming here & walking these roads. I didn’t know until after I married Bob, that this region was his home turf; the area he was born to and grew up in all of his early childhood …

I spotted a Bald Eagle's nest on Loop Road

Turning onto Altoona-Pillar Rock Road, on my way to Eden Valley Road, I burst out laughing at someone’s grim humor:


Driving out Eden Valley Road, I saw some more downed trees that someone had cut out of the way with power saws. So, the weather is already becoming fierce out this way – of course, the Ocean winds do blow down the Columbia River through here like a wind tunnel.

We never came here in the Fall & Winter months; Bob never wanted to come here in those months – IF he came this way at all during this time of year, it would have been during hunting season when he still hunted … and even then, I’m pretty sure he avoided this area and stuck to the hills surrounding the region. He generally avoided flooding areas; no matter where. I know when I was talking about buying a home here, he flat out said, “No; the area floods.” maybe he thought I wouldn't be able to deal with the flooding: I don't know because he never elaborated.

This may be my last trip this way until Spring, when the weather isn’t so treacherous. That hurts my heart, because I want to make sure – every month – that our plot block is tended to and not let to run wild: I KNOW Bob is not really THERE; but, it’s an honoring thing with me …

I was pretty upset to see this remodel happening: this is the old Durrah Homestead, and it was a very nice old house with a pillared front porch. This place is rife with old valley history. Bob's grandmother Myrtle Goodrich was the valley's 1st school teacher - and she was put up by the Durrah Family during her tenure as school teacher. She met Bob's grandfather, Hernty Smalley here. I don't know who bought this house ... but they ruined it with all the modern shit they are doing to it. MPO This house should never have been remodeled; it should have been on the Historical House Registry. NONE of this remodel was here a month ago.

Arrived at the cemetery and walked out to our plot block – and noticed immediately that the solar lamp was missing. WTH? I looked around for it, and found it several feet away from where it was supposed to be; so, I retrieved it, noticing that it had been run over by whatever vehicle is used to mow the grass. Now, I am going to give the groundskeeper a pass this time because it could have been snapped off by a passing deer leg – or an elk leg: this is a country cemetery and I did see evidence earlier this month of deer passing through. But if it happens again, I am going to be pretty upset:

I had some atificial Fall flowers in the car ... so I put them where the solar light used to be: NO ONE CAN NOT SEE THOSE!
I will bring my needle-nose pliers with me next trip and see if I can yank the broken piece out of the piping.
Hopefully the flowers will stay put ...

The smell of fir in the rain soaked air of the cemetery was so strong, that I was instantly assaulted by a longing so strong it almost took me to my knees – Bob when he was a logger, and later a truck driver, always come home with the scent of fir on his skin and clothing, and in his hair; I loved that odor blended with his manly scent. And, of course, we burned fir wood in our wood stoves in the several homes we owned. My entire life with Bob has been surrounded with the scent of fir trees. That is just an odor that I will always associate with my memories of Bob. Always.

I don’t know if any one particular memory of our life together is more painful than another when they come upon me; because every day, since I am left bereft of his physical presence … is filled with immeasurable pain that I, with the help of Yeshua … manage to keep manageable so it does not smite me and send me into an unending depression – I REFUSE THAT: Bob would not want that for me, and I refuse to allow it.

But, as I slide into the driver’s seat of our car, which is now solely mine, I smell that pungent fir odor scenting the air all around me; and I miss Bob. Acutely. I miss him coming through the door with fine fir residue all over his shoulders and gilding his tousled, wind-blown hair. I miss him putting his thermos on the counter and reaching out his long arm to pull me towards him for a long, lingering kiss – dusting me, too, with that fir residue. I miss his laughing eyes watching me shake the residue off me while I swipe it off his broad shoulders before he comes another step further into the kitchen.

While I sat in the car before leaving the cemetery, watching those memories replaying in my thoughts, I missed Bob with every painful breath of a constricted chest that houses a severed heart – a bleeding heart that beats only for him; an struggling heart that is trying valiantly to keep me living without him beside me.

Later on, much further down the main highway heading home, I turned off Ocean Beach Highway and onto the Elochoman Valley Road; and up over Beaver Creek Road (where a little coyote was about to cross the road, but got scared, turned and ran back onto the brush: at first I thought it was a dog, but it’s tail gave it away); and dropping down onto Mill Creek Road, which adjoins ocean Beach Highway again. Again, the meandering drive was ‘out of the way’; but I like it …

The Columbia River seen from atop Beaver Creek Road.

And traveling along Ocean Beach Highway, I almost got my back bumper clipped at Oak Point when a speed demon was running too close to me – I pulled off as soon as I found a turn out, and the car behind me was SO CLOSE, I really expected to hear my back bumper get crushed! But, Elohim was faithful, and I barely got off the road safely when the speed demon raced past me in a blur – don’t know where that car was going in an all-fire-rush, but I was hoping it got pulled over before it wrecked – or caused a wreck.

Thinking to escape any more close calls with speed demons, I decided to turn off at Germany Creek and continue home via Eufaula Heights, which melds with Coal Creek, which drops practically right into my back yard ;-)

While driving along Eufaula Heights Road, I decided spur-of-the-moment to turn up Ferncrest Road and see if Denise still lives in the same house she and Bruce lived in before she became a widow: Bob & Bruce ran around together all through High School and during his 1st marriage – I wanted to let her know that Bob had graduated. She did; so, we visited for about 2 hours. She’s having a hard time of widowhood: Bruce passed 5 years ago, but she is still seriously struggling; we didn’t make the funeral because Bob’s Dad also passed the same month … then our friend David, a few weeks later. After those happenings, life just took on a life of its own and got away from us, like a wildfire – during which time we sold our previous home and moved here … and yu’all KNOW what happened with THAT. I always liked Denise. We made tentative plans to get together for ‘a restaurant meal’ now and then – I left her my phone number. Now, it is a waiting game.

And, driving back down Eufaula Heights Road, a tree limb falls out of the tree directly across the lane from my car: good thing there was no on-coming traffic … what a day for mishaps on the roadways!

Glancing at the dashboard, I saw I needed to refuel. I am having oral surgery tomorrow to yank the hallow root shaft where a crown broke off a few years ago – the dentist refused to yank it because of my asthma and angina issues (https://jeastofeden.blogspot.com/2019/01/have-you-learned-anything.html)but I am forcing the issue now: it needs to come out asap. So, tomorrow morning, it will. But I needed to fill the gas tank because I know I won’t feel like it after the dentist ordeal. While I was in town, I picked up a few things … and grabbed 3 Mums pots – they are spendy, but they will last indefinitely if taken care of every year. I like Mums in the Fall:

Friday, September 27, 2019

REDEFINING MY LIFE THIS SHABBAT


Life after the death of your husband requires big questions of yourself – e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. you thought you believed, knew, and had settled in your mind & heart is suddenly in chaos.

When Bob was here on Earth, with me, I KNEW who I was, what I believed about my existence, what I envisioned Heaven to be based on what Scripture told me about that place beyond the clouds, & how things would be when one of us stepped of this planet and was whisked to our final life destiny.

Some of these questions, with forgone and satisfactory conclusions have not changed – I still believe what I have always believed, and I know what I have always known.

But …

I don’t truthfully know what Heaven actually looks like because I, personally, have never been there.

And though Bob can see me; he is forbidden to communicate with me – the gulf between here and there is not accessible to us.

And I, likewise, am forbidden to communicate with him, directly.

I can think about him. My heart can miss him. I can listen to music that reminds me of him … 



... and of those delightful afternoons and sultry nights making love with him. I can talk about, and around him; but I unequivocally am not allowed to talk directly TO him. THAT is forbidden to me by my Faith.

We always understood that aspect of our Faith.

But I am unprepared for the t.o.t.a.l.s.i.l.e.n.c.e. that echoes louder than constant and continual chatter.

I MISS talking with him.

I have small snippets of video that I can bring up to hear his voice; but it is not the same ...



I am merely listening to my husband’s voice so I never forget what he sounded like.

I miss talking WITH him.



I can look up to the sky and say, “I miss you Baby”, but I can’t ask him, anymore, for specific input into my life moving forward into my future.

That is taboo.

And more than a little scary.

I am still facing big time decisions, and for 3/4ths of my life, Bob has been my sounding board – we bounced decisions back and forth like one of those turbo powered tiny rubber balls: in 45 years of knowing each other, and 44 years of marriage, there was never a decision made in either of our lives that was not a joint venture. Making solo decisions now is kinda scary – not freak-out-I-need-meds-scary … just “Yeshua, help me” stepping out in faith scary.

And maybe, that is a good thing, all things considered.

People tell me I need to re-create myself.

Do I want to do that? I mean, do I really WANT to DO that?

CAN I do that?



I liked the me I was when Bob was a present entity in my life.

I am at loose ends now … but, am I truly ready to chuck my “old” life and jump into a new life, vastly and irrevocably altered from the one I am familiar with – the one I am reluctant to let go of?

I don’t know.

And I can’t discuss those {needful} changes with Bob. HE is the REASON for those needful changes; but, according to our Faith, discussion along those lines with him is strictly forbidden.

It’s a scary place to be.

This tightwire walk I am attempting to do.

Though, admittedly, my feet are never off terra firma – the walk I now do solo is disorienting and dizzying. My thoughts are in a constant swirl.

Though Christians do not mourn as the world mourns, grief is just as gutting. We, just like everyone else, have to learn to live with the relentless ache in the heart and the heaviness of spirit that it takes enormous strength to overcome. I never felt so tired in all my life! Trying to maintain every second of every hour of every day is draining.

And the overwhelming “missingness”! There are no words that adequately define that emotion that seems to invade every cell in your body and shroud every aspect of your life in widowhood. After 9 months/13 days/& 9 hours of widowhood, I don’t burst into tears as easily as I did those first raw months – but still, the emptiness is always present. It surrounds me like a vague mist and walks with me every waking moment.



I feel rootless: as if a strong gust off the river could just upend me and blow me away.

But I know, given all the time we spent in the mountains during our lifetime together, that living things can take root in hostile alpine environments and thrive in seemingly ‘empty’ spaces. And, I know – instinctively – that if I am to survive … and thrive … I have GOT to rebuild my life; and make it purposeful.

So.

Despite the emptiness I inherited when I was bumped in a heartbeat from wife to widow, I KNOW I AM:

A Daughter of The Most High God – I carry that title proudly, with no apologies. I may at times, appear to be a questionable daughter in the eyes of people watching me, but He will never let me go: nothing will ever change that.

A Wife – I will always be Bob’s wife: nothing will ever change that.

A Widow – I will remain Bob’s widow as long as I live: nothing will ever change that.

A Mother – admittedly, a distant mother (my children’s choices); but a mother just the same: nothing will ever change that.

A Grandmother – THAT title, in itself, is miraculous as our daughter was told she would never have natural children of her own; Creator Yeshua laughed … and blessed me TWICE; exactly 18 years apart: nothing will ever change that.

A Sister – I will always be the oldest sibling of 5: nothing will ever change that.

A Friend – my friends are far and few between, but I do have some; and I am thankful for them: nothing will ever change that.

These titles do not adequately describe me though – I am much more than these descriptions of me; and my life is lived beyond the confining lines of said descriptions. Anyone who looks beyond the lines will see a lively 62-year-old who refuses to be pigeon-holed, and resents the hell out of this crippling grief that threatens to strangle and/or hog-tie her; I am fighting to regain my solid footing and once I do … I will be off and running, dusting anyone and everything that threatens to stop me. I may be aging, but age will not whip me ;-)

I am a fighter. I fight to win - I do not accept defeat at any time. For any reason.



And I have traveled life solo before.

Before Bob – Bob was the only person I ever let get close enough to me to hem me in. And I didn’t mind Bob shortening my tether, because I never wanted to stray away from him.

But, now, Bob is not here – there is nothing to hold me back.

Except fear of the unknown.

And I refuse to let fear get a grip on me.

I WILL BE victorious because I have to be.



There is no alternative.

And my husband told me, while he was dying, that he had faith in me that I would eventually rise to the challenge and learn to fly again; and because he believed it, I believe it. Bob was always the wind beneath my wings. He still is.

Widowhood, for me, began to sneak up on us one hot Summer day – and finished its life-sucking cycle in the cold of Winter; in a hospital, in another State, where loneliness surrounded me on all sides. I woke up August 29th, asking my husband what he’d like to do for his birthday the following day … and was facing the Spector of Widowhood 24 hours later:


Bob digesting the news we had been told - that he was dying. Hard news.

Widowhood became a reality 3 months/15 days/& 20 hours later ...
(https://jeastofeden.blogspot.com/2018/12/pancreatic-nightmare.html).

I lived those hours, and I STILL can’t wrap my mind around the finality: it still seems surreal to me.


Bob breathed out his last breath on December 14th, 2018 – a Friday: the Shabbat. It really was a blessing; and Elohim was honoring my husband in this respect. I was thankful. I was truly joyful knowing that my husband had shed his seriously compromised and useless earthen vessel, and was immediately clothed in his new heavenly body as he was whisked off beyond the clouds to his permanent celestial home. I remember watching his spirit leave him, and thinking “what remains looks like he is just sleeping”. There was no flailing. There was no mask of deathly horror. Bob looked peaceful. Bob looked like he looked every night I watched him sleeping for 44 years, lying next to me. But this time, his eyes would never open again. His chest would never rise again, His long, tall frame would never again get up out of bed. Bob – the Bob I knew and loved – was irrevocably gone. Never to return:
(https://jeastofeden.blogspot.com/2018_12_15_archive.html).


Bob’s final hours that last day – his spirit slipped away so peacefully, there was no change at all in his countenance …

Because I am a shortie, I grabbed a chair and brought it close to the bedside, where I climbed up on it and bent over the bedside to kiss the lips I had kissed for 45 years – the bed was too high for me to sprawl across. Bob’s spirit was no longer housed in that body he had worn for 69 years, but I wanted to kiss the lips I knew. I wanted to touch the face that was so familiar to me. I wanted to stroke the thin wisps of hair that had regrown on the head he had kept bald for 3 decades (it was white – WHEN had his hair turned white?) I remember I was stunned to see white whips; we never saw ourselves as old – and I will always now, in my mind’s eye, see Bob as he was when we married. He has a healthy, strong body now; so, remembering him at 24 is how I chose to think of him now – I don’t know if that is an accurate image; but I don’t care: it is MY image of him; again, it is a familiar thing to me. I wanted to run my fingertips over his chest, down his arm, and off his long fingertips. Even though my husband was no longer in the room with me, I wanted to honor his cast-off shell of what he was with my last touching of it ...


Me, 17; Bob 24

I NEEDED that for me.

Still, I am left wanting more.

What to do with all that ‘wanting’?

Bob was my “Mr. Big”.

Bob completed me.

Bob was the period at the end of the sentence of my life; as I knew it with him in it.

I have loved Bob ever since he walked past me one afternoon on the school grounds in 1966:



Three quarters of my life.

This new life that has been thrust on me feels uncomfortable to me.

I do not like it.

At all.

Not even a little bit.

But, this is my life now.

I have to reshape it to fit who I am now.

I have to define who I am now.

I can never again be the me I used to be. I am different now; and I cannot continue living a cheap imitation of my old life – a life that is so very far removed from what it used to be.

But …

In reshaping my new life, I can salvage some of the shattered pieces of it and try to meld those pieces with a new blueprint of who and what I am becoming. It is a work in progress because I have no fricking idea who or what I am becoming – I just know I am “becoming”.

Something.

Different than I was.

Nothing at all like I imagined I would be when my life wrapped up. I always kinda hoped Bob & I would exit this life together.



Despite the 7 year gap in our ages, I never … not even once … entertained the notion that I would be a widow. Left behind.

I am stunned.

It all seems so surreal to me.

I don’t recognize my life in the moment and I have no idea where I am headed at any given second of any given day; or what my life will look like when I rebuild it.

All I know for sure is that I am doing what my husband expects me to do: I am living. The best way I know how, without him.

To reshape, and rebuild a purposeful life, I have bandaged my broken heart with flexi-bandaids to keep the shattered pieces in place while it heals as it haltingly pulsates with a limping life. I let tears freely wash away the sadness in my eyes. Instead of honing in on the ruin of my old life, I choose instead to focus on the beauty among the ashes.



I don’t have any solidifying answers yet. I may never have concrete answers concerning my life again. It is a process in action – and every day I have to jump-start it; and reshape it. I want my new life to honor my husband and the life he blessed me with – I do believe the 2 can be woven together to create a beautiful tapestry to strengthen what remains.



Bob came into my life and with his love, taught me how to fully live because he loved me unconditionally and never put a restraining leash on me. He gave me the freedom to grow and explore. Life with Bob was always an adventure – always an exciting learning experience. And, in death, as in life, Bob was the perfect example for me to look to.

So, I do.

I cannot commune with him directly, but I CAN sort through the memories of our life together and pull on those examples and his words of wisdom to help me lay a firm foundation, frame, and rebuild my life. I have learned to solo like I used to do before there was Bob in my life: I am solo adventuring. I am making friends – solo style. And always I hear past echoes of Bob’s encouragements cheering me on.

Moving into the future I will always know that Bob is with me in spirit, watching me, feeling him smile with approval at my small steps forward, and laughing with me as I exalt in my small victories.

This remote approval, I believe, will be sanctioned by Elohim.



And we will both find favor in His eyes.

L’Chaim!



DOG & MARE


The demoncrats are really desperate to push through with what they deem ‘necessary’ … while the rest of us see it for what it is: a smoke and mirrors/dog and pony show with old bitches and old gray mares.

The terrier terror from hell, pelosi, is of course forcing her geriatric ass to the front of the pogrom – with the demoncrat ‘go-to’, the old gray mare, hellery forcing her geriatric ass into the fray today; as of 5 hours ago. The bitch and the swayback need to be muzzled and put out to pasture; the teeth-baring terrier is showing clear signs of dementia in her speech as well as her wild eyes, and the drunken old gray mare ‘ain’t what she used to be

Add tarot card cronies to the mix, and the demoncrat freak show just gets more and more ludicrously ridiculous.

A terrorist-supporting, godless-leaning, racist, socialist, communist, Anti-American & Anti-Christian congress may be entertaining to a minor sector of society … BUT, they are NOT the {Voice} of America, not are they the {Voice} of LEGAL Americans.

barak hussain obama is NOT Almighty God; despite being hailed by the demoncrat party as their god.

nancy pelosi is NOT Christ; despite her view of herself as savior.

And hellery is NOT the Holy Spirit; despite her believe that she has supreme wisdom.

America, is for the 1st time, in it’s 243 years of existence in serious trouble.

If Americans do not ((((WAKE UP!)))), we could well lose America in 12 to 18 months’ time.

That should scare the hell out of everyone – not just Americans.