Monthly Archives: July 2014

Things I Never Thought I Could Do

I have been writing this blog now for about a year, having started it  a year after losing my life partner to prostate cancer.  It was a way to bind myself to the world, a way of communicating my grief, my heart, to those who may find some similarities to their losses, their lives, their living.  If my thoughts have helped others cope in any way, then I am happy…..

I admit that I often look up at the ceiling and talk to Jim – especially when I am trying to do something really stupid – like slide a sixty pound steel work table down a fourteen step staircase, or cutting down a tree with my new chain saw  at the  cottage.  Even buying the cottage was something of which I am not sure he would have approved.  He would probably have thought I was biting off more than I could chew and I admit, at times, I think I have.  Sometimes there is just too much to do and only one of me to do it.  I feel a little small during these moments …

At my new house – the cottage – I have been challenged with installing a generator to ensure that pipes don’t freeze in winter and water does not enter in spring and summer.  I have also seen to putting in a garage heater and hanging up all things hang-able in the garage. I finally relented to  purchasing an impact drill. Even without a husband, it seems that all I do anymore is screw around. So many things to be hung up or taken apart.

I have become somewhat of an expert in glues and fasteners of all types, tool boxes, chainsaws and their oil, as well as lawnmowers and their oil.  Oh, yes, every tool has its own prerequisite oil, fuel, temperature and temperament.

I have learned to respect “the garage work bench”.

Once and a while, I take a day off to sew, knit or bake.  Those are my real times of relaxation – things I was used to doing before…the death…

I have learned BIG TIME that no one can do my life for me.  No one can make up for the bad things that happen to me.  No one is responsible for me…..I have to live my own life in my own way…not just as a response to others or because of the expectations of others.

I am still not there yet.

My confession, having accomplished one hell of a lot in a year, is not that I have become prideful at all, simply that I am still alive.  Every time I take a chance and do something that I really should have hired someone to do or at least asked for help, I breathe a sigh of relief and say to myself, “Well I got away with that one.”

I admit that I still feel I have outlived my life.  I still feel that my life ended when Jim died.  That was me.

Can I  build a new me?

Can this be another thing I never thought I could do?

Maybe…maybe not…..

 

Not a New Life – A Second Life

When I think of something “new”, I think of a beautiful new baby, or a new dress, or a new garden. My life is not new. In fact, my life is old. Its been around a long time and experienced many things.
I have decided – today – after shopping for seven hours and then cutting grass for two hours – that this is my “second-go-round”. Not so much new as different.

There have been many times since buying a second house that I felt like I did when I first left home.  Many of the comforts I was used to were not available.  No jacuzzi, no beautiful deck and fish pond, no finished gardens…and the cupboards were bare of all of the stuff you accumulate over the years.   I joked that the kids should give me a shower to get me started in this new house.  Unfortunately, no one picked up on that little hint.

Just like when I left home to go to university, I have had to rely on myself every day. Independent and alone. A team of one.  There is nothing wrong with aloneness, as long as you feel OK about it and as long as you can walk to a friend or call a buddy when you feel like it.

I think my whining days are coming to a close.  I still feel, when I let myself, the pangs of nostalgia that take me back to Jim’s arms   That let me feel once again his strong hands and see his beautiful blue eyes and his smile.

Others are beginning to tell me that they miss him.  I guess they feel I am strong enough now to hear their stories and it is gratifying to know how many lives he touched.

Every time I hear a plane fly over the cottage I repeat the last statement made in his eulogy by his close friend and fellow pilot…

“Fair winds, my friend… Godspeed.”

He is obviously still in my heart and my thoughts.  He lives in a part of my brain that is constant and sure in an upturned world.   Even in my second life, I will strive for … fair winds…  Thank you my love!