Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Many of us have different types of challenges that tend to clog up our lives ~ emotions, physical, health related, mind-games, etc. How we cope with them can greatly change how we feel about ourselves.
Are you the type that meets these challenges head on? Do you succumb to the emotions and eat through it? Or do you listen to all the negativity and fill yourself full of self-doubt?
I have experienced all these and more!
I grew up in a 'controlling negative atmosphere' and when my parents died in Nov 2011, for the first time in 59 years ~ I was struggling to out-stretch my wings and soar skyward. Their legacy they left me was filled with self-doubt, low self-confidence and low self-worth.
For the first time in my life I was NOT totally surrounded by - "no you can't". The whole year of 2012 was filled with adventure, discovery and building up what had been broken down too many times. I made my own choices, began doing things for ME and the magic began to take place.
We all have that common bond ~ we are here to lose weight. To find that skinny person that lives within us. But for me, it goes WAY beyond that ~ it's much more than just re-learning to eat proper serving sizes and consume nutritionally sound foods.
One of my biggest discoveries was admitting that I am (was) an 'emotional over-eater'. Just saying it OUT LOUD helped to release years of crap from my life. Finding an alternative to "eating through my emotions" has been the challenge ~ but it CAN be accomplished. And now it doesn't seem so daunting anymore ~ all I did was reach out to others. I started to TALK through my emotions - instead of eating them.
Crutches kept me upright for 7 years and by Nov 2012 I was faced with "re-learning to walk or find an alternative". From Nov 2012 through January 2013, Occupational and Physical therapy took up a huge portion of my day. I was never able to consistently stand or walk.
Forty years of Osteo-arthritis had finally taken it's toll, my knee joints could no longer keep me upright. Every time I tried to stand, within 2 minutes - my knees would buckle.
Lymphedema is one of my health challenges ~ a protein based fluid gets into my legs but cannot be re-absorbed through the blood stream and lays stagnant in my legs. In March, I learned that due to the severity of my Lymphedema, I will NEVER have knee replacements.
To tell you the truth ~ when the Orthopaedic surgeon gave me this news ~ It was a RELIEF! I know that my body does not heal like a normal person! Accepting this news was easy, but finding a comfortable chair to fit me has proved more challenging.
In April, loosing Wayne really knocked the wind out of me. Whatever challenges I had, we were able to face together and now re-learning to 'go it alone' has turned too many emotions back on.
When I'm wearing my "big girl panties" I CAN handle anything - it just takes me a bit longer. I AM still the same person I was before all these challenges surrounded my life.
But when I'm experiencing a "pity party" ~ holy crap, all the negativity that continues to surround me today, gets blown out of proportion. I start believing all those people that tell me I can't do something because I'm in a wheelchair. Emotions have been running rampant - I have shut down, succumbed to the negativity, go with the flow and stopped caring.
Thoughts of moving out of this facility - that I HATE - I started thinking that maybe everyone is right? It really is easier to have someone else do everything for me.
When I stopped caring about ME....
* the 100# I lost during 2012 started reappearing.
* my smile quit showing up.
* my positive personality went into hiding.
* I cried more.
* I with-drew into my room.
* my sewing machine became covered in dust.
* I began sleeping all the time.
* exercise became a thing of the past.
Then one day, the 'organized person within' came to the surface. I was organizing my spending, when right there in black & white it hit me like a ton of bricks! I have spent over $20,000 for my surroundings and I continue to NOT request any assistance. I MUST BE STUPID!!
Slowly the transformation is taking place ~ Life and Living is replacing that negative list into positive thought and action.
The FEAR of moving and living on my own (again) is starting to break down. Admitting that I AM stronger than I think I am - is what I'm dealing with now.
Once I deal with those FEARS ~ I will once again be able to open those wings and soar skyward!
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
A year ago, our beloved Buck was laid to rest. Then 10 months later, Wayne was reunited with him. I miss both "my guys", but am comforted to know that they are back together again. In that field of green that I often dream about!
A DOG LOVER's PRAYER
My prayer book's unconventional,
An album scarred with age,
The dogs who shared their lives with mine
Stand out on every page.
Though some folks picture Heaven's gates
Atop a golden stair,
The precious photos in my book
Inspire this humble prayer:
Lord, lead me to a sun-washed field,
Then send them one by one;
Let yelps of joy lead wagging tails
As to my arms they run.
This Heaven that I pray for, Lord,
Where lilacs scent the air,
Is blessed with all the dogs I've loved
Who come to greet me there.
Tuesday, June 04, 2013
Thank you Pam (JUST2OFUS) - I will often thing of Wayne in this way...being as close as a whisper, a smile, and a song.
April 5th, Wayne headed to Tucson, Arizona for some warm sunny days - away from the Minnesota Winter. He was staying with a guy that had the same interests of viewing the night sky and taking Astro-photography. The morning of April 11th, Wayne died - unexpectedly, in his sleep.
Who knew that the quiet, shy person I met 36 years ago...would win my heart over so quickly.
In those early years, we frequented a restaurant that had a theatrical organ and they played a song that quickly grew to be our favorite. I still think of it as "our song"... Toccata & Fugue in D minor - by Sebastian Bach (here is one rendition) - we always referred to it as Taco's & Fudge...
There are many other songs that I continue to play today - many of Wayne's favorites that continue to put a smile on my face, reminding me of many memories we shared. Memories that continue to bring a smile on my face just thinking of him.
One afternoon, about a week after Wayne's death, I was trying to get a nap in before dinner. I felt him climb into bed behind me, he whispered that he loved me, engulfing me with a hug and I quietly slipped into slumber.
I miss my best friend SO much....but the other day I was reminded by a thought I came across. Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars, you have to let go in order to move forward.
I'm trying...but this is SO hard for me. He leaves a huge hole in my life and moving forward seems so scary.
Then yesterday I took a baby step forward - I called a realtor, told him I was wheel chair bound and what I needed to "move forward". I NEED to get out of Assisted Living - they do nothing for me except make me crankier every day! lol
I need to re-find that positive person inside and get back to LIVING......
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Thank you ALL for the hugs, prayers, love and support!!
Thursday, when George and Theo came out to tell me the the "Love of my Life" had died...it felt like a freight train had hit me - full force in the chest. It took my breath away...
It would have been so easy to just curl into a ball and want to follow Wayne...because half my heart died with him! All our hopes and dreams were snatched away...much too soon.
But in this 'Assisted Living place' (AKA - Hell) - there is plenty of time to stop and reflect on life. And the more I thought about it...I knew that God took him home, because he knew I would never be able to handle that whole end-of-life scenario. That sitting by the bedside watching your loved one waste away...that was never something I could handle.
Although any loss is too great to bear - when you surround yourself with others the burden can be shared. The load doesn't seem quite as heavy when you surround yourself in love and support from other people in your life.
Friday was a day of sadness and every time I needed to be near Wayne, I called his cellphone just to hear his voice.
Saturday was better than Friday.....the more I talk about Wayne, the easier it has been to get in touch with my feelings. I've shared my news with a few people here and they have surrounded me in hugs...the healing process has already begun.
Saturday night I asked Shery - Wayne's sister - if she would fly to Arizona? I needed answers and I need her to bring him home...I will pay for everything. She wasn't satisfied with the little bit of information that we had and had already called the County Sheriff's department in Tucson asking similar questions.
We now know that Wayne died peacefully in his sleep and I'm thankful that he was with someone that could call for help. If this had happened at home, he may have laid there for many days before someone found him.
My inability to get around - because of this wheel chair, has kept a distance between us...that frustrated both of us. We were just starting to work towards getting my independence back and I will definitely continue the process.
Wayne's family is totally keeping me in the center of all plans - for his Memorial service and beyond. Although Wayne & I were never married, we did have 36 awesome years together and for that I am blessed! They treat me as if I was his wife and are honoring him by keeping me tucked safely within their family unit!
I told Shery that Wayne's ashes needed to be taken home with her. Wayne & I had started looking for a house last year, some place in a DARK SITE (non light polluted area). We were planning on building an Observatory as he was into Astrophotography.
My only request was that a small part of Wayne's ashes be placed in a Rocket. His nephews - Rick, Shane, Tim and Joe need to be present. His ashes need to be shot up into space..."to the final frontier". And these young men need to give Wayne a proper - Nerd Uber Sendoff!!! I WILL make certain that it happens and they will all totally understand why!!!
While Shery will be taking a larger amount of Wayne's ashes home to the farm. There will be 3 smaller urns for Me, George and Tim...to do as we please. So, I will have a bit of Wayne's ashes buried with me when I die....and we will be back together again.
I grew up with so much negativity in my life and now I have been surrounded by so much love from his family. I had no idea they felt so strongly for me and that they would honor Wayne by making me feel like a part of their family.
Wayne's nephews have already informed me that whatever I need - they will take care of me for life. That my needs are only a phone call away...I am so blessed.
Whenever I need to feel close to Wayne....I only have to look upward, find the brightest star and know that Wayne is shining brightly down on me - guiding me with his light.
One of you told me that "Wayne is not gone ~ he is as close as a whisper, a smile and a song."
Friday, April 12, 2013
Last Friday - Wayne left for Tucson - April 5th. He had met a guy through the internet, they share the same interests for 'viewing the night sky' and he was so excited to have a Spring Break. He would be back April 16th...in time for his next doctor appointment. He has had a miserable year with his back and he finally got approved for his Spinal Chord Stimulator. More than ready to get his life back on track again!
Wayne and I had our first date - January 1977. We have traveled the world together, been best friends, supported each other through many of life's ups and downs.....he is truly the Love of my Life!!
Tonight I was sitting in my room reading, when Wayne's brother & SIL came knocking on my door. What a wonderful surprise.....
Theo grabbed a chair to sit beside me....she took my hand and said, "I'm so sorry.....Wayne died this morning."
Wayne collapsed at 8:30am and died on the way to the hospital. We don't know what happened as Arizona does not do autopsies. I'm stunned....in shock.....how can this be?
To bring him back, it would cost $20,000....so he will be cremated and his remains will be flown back. According to the doctors at the Tucson hospital - his drivers license had eye donor, so part of him will live on towards helping another person to see. Perhaps that person will come to love the night sky as much as Wayne enjoyed it.
Just when I thought my life couldn't get any worse........it did........
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