Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Please Be Gentle By Jill B. Englar Please be gentle with me for I am grieving. The sea I swim in is a lonely one and the shore seems miles away. Waves of despair numb my soul as I struggle through each day. My heart is heavy with sorrow. I want to shout and scream and repeatedly ask 'why?' At times, my grief overwhelms me and I weep bitterly, so great is my loss. Please don’t turn away or tell me to move on with my life. I must embrace my pain before I can begin to heal. Companion me through tears and sit with me in loving silence. Honor where I am in my journey, not where you think I should be. Listen patiently to my story, I may need to tell it over and over again. It’s how I begin to grasp the enormity of my loss. Nurture me through the weeks and months ahead. Forgive me when I seem distant and inconsolable. A small flame still burns within my heart, and shared memories may trigger both laughter and tears. I need your support and understanding. There is no right or wrong way to grieve. I must find my own path. Please, will you walk beside me?

“…you must not carry on over them like people who have nothing to look forward to, as if the grave were the last word. Since Jesus died and broke loose from the grave, God will most certainly bring back to life those who died in Jesus…”

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

About a week after Daddy died, we received this special bundle from Heaven. I have no doubt that she received his stamp of approval for our family.

Maddux Grace ( Maddi ) has helped to fill a big hole in my heart. She landed here on June 30th, 2009 weighing 7'11" oz and is just as beautiful as her sister, Jaxon and the rest of her cousins.

Bless you sweet baby. And happy birthday, Daddy.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

So many people have told me that this grieving process is in steps. The problem is I don't know how to grieve and I certainly don't know the steps to do it. Right now, it's just this incredible emptiness I feel all around me. There are still tears. Especially at church. Especially there. He was such a big presence there. He tried so hard to not be but he was. So many times I could see him out of the corner of my waiting to shut the double doors to signal the start of the service. Then all of a sudden he would be quietly shuffling down the outside aisles to check the thermostats so that everyone would be comfortable for an hour of worship. He then would sit for awhile beside Mom and me. Not for long though. Someone late would be coming in and he was up and to the back to help them find a spot to sit. Then he would check the ladies in the nursery to see if everything was alright. Then he would slide back down by Mom. These last few years when he would sit still for any length of time, he would fall asleep. Mom would nudge him and he would fumble with his bulletin or write her a note that said, "I was just resting my eyes a minute." Then after communion service he would get up and assist with taking the trays to the library for the nightly service if anyone needed it. Then he would head to the office to stand by the locked door while the secretary counted the contribution. A few minutes later he would appear again but may be be sitting on another pew. Resting his eyes again. There was another silent signal that he responded to when service was almost concluded. He knew to get up and open up the back double doors. Then he would come back to "our" pew and sit. Just briefly because he had to be at the doors greeting people as they left. When everyone had cleared out is when his work really began. He refilled all the bathrooms with new rolls of paper, soap and hand towels. All four bathrooms. He made sure he was the last one out so that he could be assured the doors were all locked properly.

So, see. I see him everywhere. I catch glimpses of a shadow standing at those doors out of the corner of my eye a million times during the service. I see him everywhere. But, I turn and no one is there. I would give anything to turn around and see my Daddy standing there. All handsome and dressed to the nines like he always was. The longest month of my life just completed. The one without my Daddy.

No one is doing all the things that he did. No one has noticed it yet. Oh, they notice he is not there but they haven't noticed that the things he did just a few weeks ago are not getting done. They will.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

I must confess. I am not in the mood to blog. I haven't been for some time and I may never be again. My life is starting over with new chapters and new time restrictions. Blogging for me takes time.

It's not that I don't like to blog. I do. I really do. I have made so many friends here that I just love to pieces and I never want to lose contact with them. But, I just can't blog.

Three weeks ago my Daddy died in an accident. He was almost 87 years old.

If you know me or if you don't and just read this blog then you know that my Mother and Daddy are incredible people. We are a close knit family. They were the rocks of our family. Our big family. Our amazing family. They shared a life together for 67 years. And for 57 of those years I worried about what would happen to my life someday when one of parents passed away. Now, I know. We are grief stricken for sure. We are stunned. But mostly we are just broken and feel so incomplete. We have physical pain from his absence.

For Daddy's sake we are happy. He is home. For our sake, we are sad. We are here. His car is still in that garage. His clothes are still in the closet. His Old Spice after shave sits by his toothbrush on the sink. The shoes he wore that last day are at the foot of my bed.

I wanted you to know. I wanted you to know why I am not here. My heart is just not in it right now. I'd love to tell you about my beautiful new granddaughter that was born 2 weeks ago. Oh she helped my heart so much. I could tell you that I am tired but I am feeling great. Did you know that I am going to be a grandmother again in February? That makes me very happy. Or, you might like to know that my children are all healthy and leading productive lives full of joy. I could tell you that I am abundantly blessed because I am. I know I am and I am so grateful.

But, I just don't want to talk right now. Because of my Daddy. He died 3 weeks ago and my heart will never be the same.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

I've had several ask me in person, via email, and comments if I was ever going to blog again. I really had some hesitation because frankly my life is crazy. I feel like the things that I am dealing with on a personal level can't possibly be of interest to anyone else. Sometimes I even feel whiny and I don't want that.

Then on another level I have missed the contact. I was so very grateful last month when I know so many of you were on your knees praying for my mom and dad. You were praying prayers when I couldn't even find the words to start. I was literally washed out. I couldn't even put together a complete thought much less a complete sentence! Whatever lesson this has prepared me for I feel stronger. So. Thanks for caring if I update or not!

Mom is better. She is gaining strength everyday. She feels like it is slow and rightly so. But, I see the progress from different eyes. She has come so far! On her 85th birthday she endured a major major surgery and then the next week another one and then the next week another hospitalization via an ambulance ride. My sisters and I were literally running in every direction to make sure we had mother settled and Daddy at peace with how things were going. Let me tell you that it was not nor is it yet an easy job. But, we are getting there. We are having ups and downs but every moment God is continuing to guide us down the 'road'.

The family is all fine. Since I posted last we have celebrated Avery's 2nd birthday and Macy's 7th birthday. We are anxiously awaiting Jaxon's new sister Maddux to be born a few days before Jaxon's 2nd birthday in July. Camp Neena lifetime membership roster will be boosted to 5. That is a full week a piece! Or more is fine with me.

Gordon took a lateral tranfer to another LCRA facility last month. It was a great move for him personally. It is a shorter commute and is a much better working environment. It was not a raise but we are thankful for the "promotion" and the company's faith in his experience for the last 25 or so years. When this position became available we were so hopeful but also realistic that he would be the oldest candidate amidst a group of fresh out of college boys. But, experience reigned and the fact that he still has valuable lessons he can "teach" that younger generation to take over were rewarded.

I have 2 more BOOKWORM library Wednesdays. Truthfully? I am totally burned out. If it weren't for Tawana and all her hard work keeping it and me going I would have already thrown my hands up. We both have decided that this will be our last year. We loved it and have enjoyed the planning and the children but......she has 2 new granddaughters that she plans to visit alot and I am hoping that I can visit mine more too. Please feel free to slap me if I ever volunteer for anything again. Slap me hard.

For now, I think that about covers it. Stay tuned. There is never a dull or slow minute around here.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Just a quick note to let you know that things remain the same with mother. We are basically waiting on Tuesday. This will be the day of the open heart surgery to repair her right mitral valve. Which, excuse my language, has been regurgitating. That was straight from the diagnosis. She seems to getting a little more anxious and restless everyday while waiting. And understandably so. More pitiful still is to watch my daddy watch my momma. He wants to make it all go away for her. He wants to take her home. Tonight, we sisters, left them alone at the hospital to spend the night. We told them it was the honeymoon suite. And then I found the nearest restroom and had a meltdown. It was much needed so please don't think I want pity. It was a cleansing cry and I don't have to do those often. But sometimes nothing else will work. All we basically know factually is that open heart surgery will be performed on Tuesday to fix this problem. So, updates may be few and far between after this post. I'll be facebooking reports for those who have facebook. Just know that your prayers, those of you who know me and those of you who don't, are very much loved and appreciated by my family.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

See that beautiful smile? That is my mother. That smile is what holds our family together. That and the humongous, loving, generous, giving, humble-spirited, caring, happy, free spirited, pleasant, positive, "never says a bad word about anything or anybody", heart that beats inside her. She is our rock. That man? My daddy absolutely adores her. I could tell you that he tells her everyday at least 100 times that he loves her. I could tell you that he leaves a quarter on her nightstand every night for her hard work. I could tell you that instead of a chocolate on her pillow, she gets a Hall's cough drop. Those are all true statements and a few of the ways, in his witty way, that he conveys his love for his bride of 67 years.

But, right now, today we find out that her physical heart is not working too well. Some of the tests that were run over the weekend showed that sometime in the past few months/weeks/days she has suffered a rather significant heart attack. We sort of have an idea now that are looking back as to when it happened but can't be sure. We just know that it happened. The plan for now is to proceed with a cardiac catherization to strengthen any areas that were not affected by the event. In other words, if there are any blockages they will stent them and if there are any other areas that can be seen that need repairs they will do that. But, basically what has been damaged is damaged. After that procedure, she will participate in a cardiac rehab program to build up her heart muscles.

So, please pray for her as we prepare for Thursday's surgery. Family is coming in to be with each other. Everyone, I mean everyone, loves this woman. I feel certain that we will receive our mother's heart repaired and healthy. In Daddy's words to the dr. , "She needs to get back to her mowing obligations!" And she has never mowed a day in her life.