- My face began to swell over the weekend, on the side of my face where the lousy tooth is. It was then I started to panic. I got in first thing on Monday morning; sure enough, it is infected.
- Next week I go in for dental surgery. I blame my mother for this. Although she was good in so many ways, dental care was not one of them.
- The “Oh, so simple” signing up for Medicare and Social Security was not so simple. So I gathered all my documents and headed to the nearest Social Security Office, where I got both done in less than an hour.
- Next week is a crazy week. The biggest pain is I have an appointment with the VA to fill in a 40-page document so that I will receive my Widows Pension. The thing that frustrates me the most is that they already have this information.
- Lastly, as I have thought about Jack’s passing, I realize that there were several phases of his life with me.
The first was when we were both younger, healthy, and running mini-road races. We did so much, and we traveled the world. Life was one big adventure. That’s the Jack I am missing. That’s the Jack I wish would saunter in the door with stories about his flight patterns and jokes he’d heard along the way. That’s the Jack of my heart.
I have not felt like watching TV since Jack passed. Yet, I am not comfortable with the sound of silence either. A while back, I made a list of some of my favorites on Youtube.
So many of these performances from way back when, like when we were young too, are fabulous!
One singer I loved back in the day was Andrew Gold. Now I had a few songs I liked. But I didn’t pay attention to the rest of the band. After all, I was married and raising my first baby, Amanda.
But as I listened and watched, I realized the band members (who are still with us) are in their early 70s.
Sadly Andrew Gold passed away quite young due to complications from kidney cancer. But most of the others are still around.
One of those is a pianist, orchestrator, and producer, Brock Walsh—a Harvard graduate who also worked with Linda Ronstadt, is featured in all the videos singing backup and playing the piano and organ for Andrew.
Andrew is the redhead on the left side of the stage playing the piano, and Brock is on the right side playing piano and organ and singing back up.
Here’s the thing, everyone looks so young. I remember being that young. But doesn’t time fly by? In a few short months, I will be 65. Now isn’t that just a kick in the pants? How on earth did that happen?
On Monday, I went to our local Social Security Office. I had tried the “easy to do” online sign-up, but even though I could enter Jack’s date of death, it wouldn’t allow me to do anything. So I showed up in person, and everyone was so nice! I was all done and on my way in less than an hour.
So while I putter around, I listen to Andrew and his band, sing all the old songs and remember that once I was very young, trying to make good decisions and often failing. But the music always helped to calm the spirit.
Well, time for this old girl to get to bed with the doggies.
Friday found me getting the family room ready for two new pieces of furniture.
My 30-year-old sofa has never fit in this house. So, Friday’s delivery removed that sofa and Jack’s chair and moved the new smaller loveseat and a nice reclining chair.
I’d been concerned because of all the rain we were having, but somehow we managed to get furniture moved around between the torrential downpours.
I had to do this for several reasons but for the most part, for Lili and me. You see, Jack’s chair still smelled like him. Each day Lili would sniff at it, hoping Daddy would appear. And every day, I woke, looked at his chair, and remembered the day he left us.
It all started in that chair.
So the house looks different in the family room. This morning Lili was calm. It was as if she understood that Daddy wasn’t coming back.
Today I am cleaning out the mud room. Lili chewed the boot bench in her puppyhood, which is terrible. So, I am emptying that and will remove the bench and put a small old desk in there. Then I must start to clear out the kitchen.
Little by little, bit by bit, I’m getting a handle on getting the house in order. One thing I have learned is that Jack was a true packrat!
So off I go now to get to the cleaning. Music, rags, and detergent! So much to do.
Time is going on. I am determined to find a new life. Mostly I am doing okay, but sometimes I feel tied to the house as if waiting for Jack to come back or appear in his chair. So as the hours die on Thursday night, here is this week’s Friday Five.
- I started my week meeting up with Amanda, Matt, Savi, and Quinn for dinner. It was so wonderful to see everyone and have a relaxed meal.
My grandson Quinn is still in the world of fun and adventurous little boy stuff.
On the other hand, Savannah has grown so tall and is on the verge of being a full-fledged teenager. Lovely and sweet.
- My daily joy is my trips out to the farm. Each day I go and buy fresh corn, Thai Spring rolls, and their homemade bread.
I eat only when hungry, and my weight has been falling off. It’s a relief only to eat when I feel like it and then only what I like.
- I went out on Wednesday and bought two new pieces of furniture. A recliner to replace Jack’s chair and a small love seat to replace my 30+-year-old ginormous sofa. The sofa I have wanted to get rid of for a while, but since Jack’s death, his chair hurts me every single day.
- I had my physical on Thursday, and I am mostly okay. Right now, just a few minor things and my hips.
- I raced home to take care of the dogs to find Lili’s front ankle to be swollen, and she was limping. Should she still be in the morning, it will be off to the Veterinarians we will go.
So, I wish you, Gentle Reader, a very happy and wonderful weekend!
Didn’t I say on Friday I was going to keep things low-key? I guess, for the most part, it was, with the exception of working on laundry and puttering around the house, picking this up, arranging things for my convenience, and a few naps I threw in.
On Friday I found a new car. She is a 2023 Toyota Highlander with all that I could hope for. She is on the assembly line in Indiana, and I expect delivery at the end of August—pictures to follow.
I’ve been selling Jack’s stuff. Already the tractor/mower is spoken for, the chainsaw, Jack’s dingy, and engine too.
We have a church organ that we got at an auction when we lived in Florida. Yes, it is big, but in excellent condition.
I still have things like the snowblower and two push mowers to go, and I am sure a whole bunch of other stuff, but it is a start.
Every time I accomplish something, I call Melodie & Ron and report in. I am not sure how I would manage without them cheering me on!
Well, that’s all for now. I imagine I will be busy like this for a very long time.
I took some time off right after Jack passed away. I figured two weeks, and then I’d be able to face life again. What I have found is that perhaps I need a little bit longer. Okay, folks, here is this week’s Friday Five.
- I want you to know that your loved ones will need the most ridiculous documents when you die. Some papers I understand, but other companies require a notarized Death Certificate mailed to the corporate office. This I do not understand.
- For instance, our Cell Phone Company wanted all that and my right arm. I tried calling corporate with no results. So I went to the local store. They had a hard time, too, despite their ability to go in and see that I have used my credit card since 2018 to pay the bill. Also, we have used my email address for paperless billing. It is still not resolved. But at least I can pay the bill.
- Some good friends of mine gave me a wonderful bereavement gift. Instead of a floral arrangement, they sent me a gift card to our local farmstand. I get out each day for a ride to the farm to pick up their fresh corn! How wonderful. Another neighbor brought over some zucchini and summer squash! Vegetables are so much better for you than Lasagna or brownies (although those would be gratefully accepted!)
- So, I am looking for a new car. I want another Highlander—one with all the latest safety features. I am going to a Dealership tomorrow.
- Aside from that, my chilling out starts right after this visit. I need some time off.
That’s it for this week. I hope where ever you are; your weekend is a good one.
Good Morning, Gentle Readers,
As I wake each day and begin the process of walking myself through another day, I have realized that I am still in a state of shock with the loss of my husband.
Now I knew he was ill. I knew that at 85 years old, Jack was living his last days, but that day at home, his last day at home, he was happy. All was right in his world.
And then, just like that…it wasn’t.
Now I wander around. I look for Jack outside, and the other day I actually wondered when he’d call. I know he won’t be coming home or calling, and I sure do miss him.
The Food Bank continues to make out well. There are so many items that Jack loved, and I did not. I’ll tell you, it felt very good to bring it all in, especially since their shelves were empty.
Lili is doing a bit better. She sure misses Jack, and her nerves have been somewhat frayed. But each day, she seems to get better and better.
Have a great Thursday, and keep an eye on the sky, as we are due for some rough weather later on.
Today is my sister’s birthday. I wish I could be down with her to celebrate her big day.
I do want to tell you all what a wonderful sister Melodie is. She is five and a half years older than me, and I was her “first baby.” She cared for me like a little mother and was always more like a mother to me than a sister. I am so blessed to have her!
Mel is one of the kindest women that I know. She always has a smile and a warm greeting for those around her. She loves her family wholeheartedly, rejoices in their successes, and comforts them in their sorrows.
Ron and Melodie
She has been married to her husband, Ron, for over 50 years. They met at the age of 13 at summer camp and wrote to each other for many years before their wedding in November of 1971.
So today, on her 70th Birthday, I want to wish my beloved sister, Melodie, a very Happy Birthday!
- Often I have heard of paper reduction acts. I am all for them, especially when I got my Widows Pension Pack from the Government. This pack is forty pages long, and nearly every page contains information that they already have due to Jack’s status in the military. I have called for help every day and no one answers. Today I will call again. However, I will call a different department and beg!
- I stopped in to check with someone who knows my cars and got an idea of what I can get for the Cadillac. He’s been a friend for over twenty years, so we talked a lot about Jack and things.
- Actually, yesterday I also had my hair done. I do not want a fussy hairdo. I want to shower and scrunch and go. These are natural curls.
Why not use them? I am so lucky to have Becca. She is a young friend and stylist. Didn’t she do a great job?
- Today I’d like to sit and actually do some paperwork. Pay bills, write a few notes, and organize my certificates folder. Jack’s original social security card and birth certificate are in this folder. They are very old and are in tatters.
- Since Jack’s passing, I have not watched any TV. I put on music in the morning and let that calm my soul. Life has changed. This is new territory for me. My world is different, but life is going on.
I wish you enough…
• I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright no matter how gray the day may appear.
• I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun even more.
• I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive and everlasting.
• I wish you enough pain so that even the smallest of joys in life may appear bigger.
• I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
• I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
• I wish you enough hellos to get you through the final goodbye.