Sunday, January 29, 2006

A Different Time and Place

I awoke in bed...empty except for me and the still strong smell of his cologne. As I lie there warm beneath the covers wondering how I am supposed to face the day, I hear the soft noises arising from the other bedrooms. Calling my name....Mommy, mommy, mommy! Oh yeah, I have to get up....I have to go on! But how will I do it, how will I cope. And how on earth do I tell these three little ones that their daddy will never walk through the door again? God give me strength and wisdom to help them somehow because I can't even help myself right now.

As I gather them together and herd them to the living room my thoughts are confused......they are all so young, how will I make them understand what has happened. They know he's been sick and has been in the hospital for a few weeks now but the boys are only 2 1/2 and not quite 4. How much will they grasp? And how about our only daughter....she's 7 now. Old enough to know and understand. It will be hardest on her at this point. She was always such a "Daddy's Girl".

I look into their little faces and their eyes so full of trust in me that for a few minutes I just want to run away and not face them and the questions that will come. If not now, in the years to come. My throat starts to close up.

I sit them down in a semi-circle on the floor around me. I tell them that their Daddy was very, very sick and couldn't get better no matter how hard he tried. And God saw how sick and how tired Daddy was and took Daddy to live in heaven with him where he would never be tired again or sick again. And Daddy would not be coming home to us ever again; that Daddy's home was now in heaven with God. Daddy is now an angel and will be watching over us all.

The boys don't fully understand, I can see it in their eyes and on their faces. It's just what I expected. They will have more questions in the months and years ahead. Perhaps I will better be able to deal with it then. When it isn't so new to me too. Will we survive that long?

I turn my gaze to our daughter. The pain I see in her little face and in her eyes makes me wish that I could have died rather than inflict this pain on her when she is so small. She crumbles into my arms and sobs. I tell myself "don't cry, be strong for her"! It is all I can do to not break down and fall totally apart and I pray for someone else to be the strong one and take over......but there is no one else. It is my job....and there is no one to help. How I wish my folks were still alive. I wish I was a little girl myself and they were here to comfort me and handle it all. But they aren't! So I try to compose myself and pull myself together and be there for my children. Be the strong one for them.......they need me now more than ever. "Buck up girl," I tell myself, "you can fall apart later if you need to but for now put on a show for them." Let them know that everything will be okay even though Daddy isn't here.....we are still a family and you will be there to care for them.

Although it is sometimes hard to remember......GOD is with us!

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Life is GOOD!

While driving through the city the other day hubby and I happened to see several homeless people. Some of them looked pretty cold and miserable. And seeing them reminded me of pictures I have seen of our military in the mountainous regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan. And these images started me thinking about how lucky I am.

I have a house to live in. My family is close by. I am able to heat my house (even though the price of heating is high) I am still able to remain warm which is far better than a lot of people. I have food to eat every day plus food in my refrigerator and cupboards. I have clean clothes to wear and a place to wash them when they are dirty. I have an inside toilet and a shower and tub that I don't have to share with many people. I am free to come and go as I please anywhere I choose. I have the ability to sleep relatively peacefully at night without the sounds of gunfire or bombs going off nearby. I have the freedom to speak what I am thinking without the fear of arrest or prosecution. I have the freedom to attend a church of my choice.

I believe the next time that I think I am having a bad day I will come back and re-read this post.

Monday, January 23, 2006

My mother came from a family of 13 children. I guess they didn't have birth control back then. She was the third from the youngest. A girl and a boy were born after her. My mom and her younger sister were very close growing up and in the years following after their marriages and births of their children. They did a lot, celebrating holidays together, talking and sharing secrets on the phone, etc.

In fact, they were so close that one would pick up the phone to call the other one and she would already be on the line without the phone every having rung! They used to laugh about this and tell us that they were so close that they must be communicating telepathically and just thinking of each other would make them both want to call each other at the same time. That is the explanation they always gave for this phenomenal and frequent happening! Whatever the explanation, they did seem to sense things going on in the others life without being told.

I remember when my mother had been hospitalized for the last six months of her life with something the doctors could never figure out or give a name to. My aunt, my cousins told me, was napping on the couch in her living room about 10 miles away from the hospital when she sat up on the couch as if someone had pushed her to a sitting position and announced to them that my mother had just passed away! Needless to say, they thought she had been having a dream. I called their house a few minutes later with the news and the time of my mothers passing. I tell this fact so you will better understand my sorrow.

I received a phone call this evening at 8:33 PM. My cousin was on the phone. She wanted to tell me that her mother, my aunt, had passed away tonight at 7:55 PM. She was 86 years old last July. She lived a long and happy life! She is now reunited with her husband, her parents and all of her siblings! What a joyous reunion that must have been! To be greeted at the entrance to heaven by those you love, and to see the faces of your brothers and sisters once again. I can only imagine the feelings of love and happiness that my aunt and mother must be experiencing this night.

I have mixed feelings as I deal with this news. Part of me is very happy for my aunt and my mother. Part of me is feeling very sad. You see, this aunt kind of filled in for my mother (it was an understanding they had between them) after my mother's death. She didn't become my one can ever replace another human being.....but she became a "stand-in" mother to my two sisters and me. And since our families were extremely close emotionally to one another and we spent every holiday together and lots of vacations together I am having some trouble. As I watch the fire in the fireplace I am reminded of the camping vacations and being outside in the evenings watching the fireflies flitting through the night like the sparks now rising up the chimney.

If I close my eyes I can hear the laughter and smell the marshmellows roasting over the open fire. And then I am transported by my memories of Aunt Annette's pumpkin and pecan pie at Thanksgiving. No one could make pecan pie like Aunt Annette! And the Christmases spent with her. And how she searched and searched to find just the right gift for each of us and if she couldn't find exactly what she was looking for, she would make it or craft it herself! I remember when my first child was born and how Aunt Annette came to the house when I came home from the hospital with this beautiful baby girl in my arms so unsure of what to do and being reassured by my aunt that my instincts would take over and not to worry!

I remember the way she held me up after the death of my first husband, the father of my children. The strength she was able to give me.....that feeling that said "I can go on"!

So, to you Aunt Annette......"we can go on" and we will! But my dear Auntie, we will miss you!

Saturday, January 21, 2006


Sorry it has taken so long to post a picture of the newest member of our family. Finally it uploaded without a hitch so I am please to introduce Cayden Xavier to all of you!

I think he is a keeper, what do you think?

He doesn't look like her two other children. This one looks very much like his Daddy!

I am anxiously awaiting the time when we will be able to make the trip to Kentucky to finally hold this little one and shower him with kisses! Of course, I will have to share him with Bumpa and that will be tough but I must not be stingy!


I have tried posting the pictures of the newest baby several times and keep getting a messsag that an error has occured.

Since I have been very busy being a caregiver, I haven't had the time to give it proper time to figure out what the problem might be. I will hopefully be able to do that soon. Be patient!

Monday, January 16, 2006

The pictures have arrived.....

and if I'm not too tired when I am done here, I will post it. Otherwise I will wait until tomorrow to introduce Cayden to the blog world!

I don't know how I get so busy, but sometimes it seems that I have no time. I don't know how in the world I ever worked full time, cared for children, and kept a house clean and laundry done! I no longer work outside the home and my children are all grown and out on their own but it seems like I am always hauling some child around in my car or carrying one on my hip. Don't get me wrong.....I wouldn't change a thing. I love being with my grandkids. I think they help keep me young.....or make me older faster. I can't decide which!

Today Hubby had an appointment at the cardiologists office for a Myocardial Perfusion Scan. Sounds impressive, doesn't it. Basically it is a stress test on a treadmill walking at increasingly faster speeds and higher inclines. So it feels equivalent to running up a mountain side! This is followed by a scan of your heart after radio active isotopes have been injected into your body via an IV. Mind you, they must transport this substance in a steel container from one area to the next so as not to contaminate the environment, but then it is injected into the human body. Sounds bizarre to me, but I have been going through this same test every year for the past 10 years at least.

Hubby did very well. He made it quite a while into stage 4, which is much better than I have ever done. The farthest I have ever made it was just into stage 3, and I didn't last very long there. Of course, I have failed every stress test that I have ever taken and because of the failures had to have a heart cath done within a few weeks of taking the stupid test. But I'm sure that hubby passed. I kind of feel like a big wimp for never making it as far as he did. After all, the heart attack he had was a massive one and he is lucky to be alive. The heart attacks I had were never as severe as his.....and I just wimpped out on those darn tests. He says it's because (and I quote) "I am younger than you!" So much for making me feel better about it!

Maybe I will just decide to never take that stupid test again! Can't fail it if I don't take it......sounds like a plan to me!

Friday, January 13, 2006


I was going to hold off posting until I received a picture in my e-mail so I could post that along with the news! But since it still hasn't arrived, I decided to go ahead and post anyway.

We have another new grandchild! A boy this time. He was born yesterday, the 12th at 3:11 PM. His name is Cayden Xavier and he weighed 8# 10 oz. and is 21 1/2 inches long. He was born in Kentucky so I haven't seen him yet. This is our 13th living grandchild. The one that is due at the end of May or first part of June, will make fourteen for us. Must be something in the drinking water, huh? The Hubby can't get any vacation time right now so we will have to wait to go there to see him and hold him. It's hard to wait......I don't know when we will be able to go. The Hubby has a stress test on Monday at the cardiologist office and he was lucky to get time off work to do that. They are so buy working overtime and trying to meet deadlines for contracts that I'm afraid he is overdoing it at this point. So, I will have to wait to show off this newest member until his picture arrives or they put his picture on the hospital website tomorrow or the next day.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Late night fun!

The Hubby has been working overtime lately so he gets up at 2:30 AM. Needless to say that come 8 o'clock at night he is tired and ready for bed.

Yesterday after work he had to work on his truck. The water pump went out on it and he had to take my car to work yesterday which left me home without wheels. It took a couple hours for him to put the new pump in, so he was extra tired last night.

He went to bed around 8:30 and I followed after the news at 11:30. I climbed into bed and he rolled over and patted my bottom and whispered "Sorry about all the batteries being dead!" Wondering what in the heck he was talking about I decided to ask him and see if he would explain in his sleep.......this might be fun!

He responded with "All those Christmas toys and the batteries only worked 1 minute in each toy. I know you felt bad about it so I'm just telling you how sorry I am." I'm trying not to bust out laughing because we didn't even buy any toys as Christmas presents for the grandkids that needed batteries. So I said to him "That's ok, the toys have all gone home with the little ones and now the parents have the task of replacing all the dead batteries." He was quiet so I thought he had gone somewhere else in his sleep. A couple minutes later he said "Then why are all these toys and wrappings and empty battery containers doing in the middle of the bed."
I couldn't contain myself any longer. I busted out laughing and said that whatever he was on, I wanted some too! With that, he started laughing really hard and said "Just heart medication and now I see that it's not toys and wrapping's the blanket!" Those were the last words he uttered before rolling over and returning to his dreamworld!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Why am I here?

Did you ever wonder what you are here for? What your purpose in life really is? I've been wondering that a lot lately and I don't know why.

Are we here because we just ARE? Or are we here because God has a plan for us? And if that is the case, what is His plan? What are we supposed to accomplish through our lives.....

I have no answers. I know that He hasn't taken me Home yet because there are still things that I haven't learned along the way. And I believe that He wants us to learn lots of lessons before he calls us Home. I have screwed up so many times while learning these lessons that I would have given up on me....but not God. Even though we live in a "toss it out" society, God never tosses us out as long as we keep trying. He gives us chance after chance after chance. Should we do any less for our loved ones and friends when we think they have screwed up? Probably not! We should all try to be more like the Lord, even though sometimes our patience is sorely taxed and wearing pretty thin.

Maybe that is what we are here for. God only knows!!

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The New Year!

This year is proving to be very busy already. With the arrival of the newest member of our family and the phone calls to me with reports of her progress from my son to cleaning up the remnants of Christmas I haven't had much time to get to my computer.

Hopefully things will return to normal now. Although we do have another grandchild due anytime now. But that one will be born in Kentucky, a little boy named Cayden, and I won't get to go and hold him until later in the year. And one more grandchild that we don't know the sex of as yet that will be born in late May or early June. That will give us a total of 14 grandchildren......actually 15 because I still consider Owen, who was still born, as a grandchild too.

I have to go shortly to run some errands and then back home to watch my precious 1 year old grandson while Mom runs her errands.

I am so glad that I am able to enjoy my grandchildren. Both of my parents passed away when they were 49 years old and never saw any of their grandchildren. How I wish they could have gotten to know their grandchildren. Maybe that is why I enjoy spending as much time as I can with mine. I want to make memories with my grandchildren that they can carry with them through life. My children missed out on those memories with their grandparents and I think it is an important part of their heritage.

Enough looking is a new year and we must look ahead!