So Raw, Doubled Down.

( I wrote this many days ago but was only able to publish it now.)

 

 

 

 

 

My dad has been dead for a very, long time. He died at the age of 79, he would have been 91 today. He didn’t die after a long illness though he had heart problems for many years. I’m not sure he was ever the same after he had quadruple by-pass surgery when it was a VERY new and rare procedure.

 

He did have the same doctor President Clinton had and I know my dad would have just loved that to pieces. I can see him in my mind saying “Well, the surgeon practiced on me.” That literally would have been a “my dad” kind of saying and he would often laugh at his own jokes. I realize I laugh at my own jokes with the same pleasure, I get the same rolling eyes from my kids that I used to give to my dad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You would think that after such a long time the pain would have dulled, and for the most part it has. But, there are days, like today, that the searing pain is so overwhelming that it feels brand new. It’s as if someone had plunged their hands into a recently healed wound on the outside and ripped it open with callous hands, blood bursting everywhere, red, raw, and then pouring in lemon juice. THAT kind of pain. Car accident pain. Torture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You think you will never get away from the pain, your body, your tears, you are wracked in pain and overwhelming sadness and you feel it will never stop. It does, get better, but you will live with this experience for the rest of your life. When people tell you “time heals all wounds” I say, don’t believe them. Yes, it gets better, day-to-day, but no one can promise you that there won’t be significant days that you will feel your grief with the same intensity.

 

 

 

Every part of me feels breakable and I wait for time to be alone so I can cry in private. A lot of time has been spent in my car just sitting alone. I try to think back and wonder if I am always like this on his birthday but I am sure I have never been this bad. Do I say this every year?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think that my dad missing out on his grandson’s exciting news about getting into medical school is killing me. My father, my son and I are very close in temperament and for that I am incredibly grateful. In my heart, I am sure he knows, but others mock me and I get tired of defending my beliefs. I know, to me, what is true and that’s all that counts. But, I admit living with three atheists and non-believers sometimes gets to me. They may not believe in messages from the afterlife but I do.

I was always like my dad. He is the missing link in the family dynamics and it is a dire loss for me. My mother and my sister can’t possible understand it but how could they, they are exactly the same. My dad was the one who knew me best, knew what I thought and felt instantaneously. I always had support, I always had someone on my side, someone who understood me perfectly. That died 12 years ago.

 

I am going to buy a piece of cake tomorrow and eat it in his memory,

 

angel cake slice yummy

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I got my sweet tooth from him that’s for sure. I am weepy now but I hope when I wake up tomorrow I will feel better.

 

Dad, I would do anything to hear your voice, to have you call me your little mouse, to have a hug only a daddy can give. I know you were suffering and yes, I was glad that you had no pain, you weren’t yourself for the last few years anyway.

 

But, selfishly, I remember my old dad, the way you were in my mind: kind and strong.  If you wanted raspberries that cost five dollars, when they were not in season you would buy them,  as I would, because money didn’t matter, “if you had to have them.”  You were the first foodie, you used to run on the beach in the sixties before “jogger” was even a word. You were so nurturing, optimistic, warm and kind. You live in my heart forever.

 

Happy Birthday Daddy. I miss you. I will always miss you. I just wish it didn’t hurt so much still.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Birthday Month

We’re in the beginning of September, the late home stretch of Summer. A few hot days left,  some warm, comforting rain coming soon. As much as I physically and emotionally despise the Winter I do look forward to early Autumn, that is at least until my birthday.

No, I’m not 6, though I often feel that way. I do act child-like  (ok kids, childish) in some ways but to me little things make me happy; especially things that I can do to entertain myself. I’m not needy, that way, I amuse myself all the time and I hope to be able to continue to do this until I take my last breath and die.

I laugh out loud to my own jokes with nobody around and sometimes I think I am absolutely hilarious. It doesn’t matter to me at all what other people think, as long as I am enjoying myself, and not hurting anyone, that’s all I need. I think I got this from my dad who often laughed at his own jokes but back then, as a daughter, things didn’t really seem that funny to me. They do now.

I celebrate and look forward to my birthday every year. I have no shame about age, I will be 58 in early October and I hope to be just as happy as I approach the so=called dreaded 60.” I admit sixty does sound OLD and it seems impossible that I will be sixty but I hope to celebrate that birthday with even more presents, laughter, family, flowers and friends. Key word : Hope.

A birthday cake

Why not? In the past, my mother always lied about her age.. For years she lied about my age and my sister’s age, we got younger every few years. She used to say and “this is my daughter.” It took us years for her to add-on  each name. She gets it now.

She doesn’t like me to tell people her age so I’ll just say she gave birth to me as a young teen mom. I’m really not coy about age or gray hair. At the moment I am trying to grow out a reddish glaze, not to cover my gray hair but to make it shiny. It didn’t work. Now my hair has three shades, all I want is for my natural brown and silver.

I buy myself little things, very little things, a few weeks before my birthday. It could be one cookie or something from a thrift shop, it by no means is expensive. It’s my birthday month and who knows better than me what makes me happy?

Think about this the month before your birthday, buy yourself something. Why not? I’m sure you deserve it. Wish yourself a Happy Birthday Month and all good things to come throughout the year.

PS Warm wishes on your special day from ME!

Just One More Hug

Wednesday, November 13, 2013.

Screenshot from a public domain film The Littl...

Screenshot from a public domain film The Little Princess (1939) starring Shirley Temple and Richard Greene (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today would have been my dad’s 90th birthday, he died eleven years ago. I guarantee you it will not be an easy day or night for any of us. I’m trying to use this day to remind me of what a wonderful father he was, how he loved birthdays and presents and food and more food and little presents that cost less than a few dollars which we called “shmonsas.”

I miss him, those feelings stab at my heart and reopen wounds I thought had healed. Apparently, there is no complete healing from death and pain.  Since we have talked about my dad lately I feel the pain, as if it was fresh, wounds ripped open, knives sharpened and stabbing pain. Tears are spilling down my eyes, in the catch of my voice.

Of all times, the day before his birthday I found myself making his favorite, home-made pea soup.  I hadn’t even realized that his birthday was coming up because I was focusing only on 11/11 my favorite day and time. That meant today was 11/12 and I realized my husband and I are having dinner with my mom on Wednesday, not even conscious that Wednesday, 11/13 was my dad’s birthday. The world works in strange ways, I still believe there is a reason for everything.

Every Saturday morning when I was a child, my dad and I would watch Shirley Temple movies together, just the two of us. He would take his finger and wipe his eyes quickly and I once asked him if he was crying. He told me he had allergies but soon enough I learned the truth. Every week, another Shirley Temple movie, The Little Princess, Curly Top etc. was on. Saturday mornings were very special for me and my dad.

When I was older we would get bagels which was not technically stealing since the store was not open and once he and I got off the tram in Austria to buy bratwurst thick with golden brown mustard and rolls and left my mother and sister on the tram-car (not realizing they had no idea where they were and that we were gone.) As sorry as we were, he and I still held unto our sides remembering my mother’s fuming face, nostrils flaring. Luckily, he was the one who got in trouble, not me.

We would all go to Pathmark grocery shopping while I still lived at home and we would put ridiculous sized items in the cart while the other person wasn’t looking, 5 gallons of pickles, 10 gallons of ketchup, we thought we were hilarious. Sometimes someone had opened up a bag of cookies (No, it was not us) but we would help ourselves to samples. Once when my mother was away ( working) we went to a Spanish restaurant and got a little tipsy on Sangria, toasting wall paper hangers that did not show up. My kids will be shocked to hear this!  Another time, I was driving home from my married life in Boston, pregnant with my first child and he had come down as a surprise to direct traffic wearing an orange helmet with a bright orange sign with my name and arrows so that I wouldn’t get lost. If I had one sentence to describe him, it would be that one. When there were mice crawling over my bed and feet in my apartment he would pick me up and bring me “home.” Nothing was too much.

My mom, my husband and I will eat dinner at a restaurant and try to celebrate his life instead of mourning it.  I thought I might want to put a candle on my dessert for him but I can’t kid myself, I’d burst into tears before it even came. I think I’ll just say my own few words, privately. He was a wonderful father to both my sister and me: nurturing, warm, supportive. I still miss his warm hugs the most, a true loss. Prone to educational talks that were a bit too lengthy what would I do now to hear one again. I could count on to him to at least understand my side even if we didn’t agree, it’s been so long, eleven years, that I can’t even remember what that feels like anymore. We were so similar, he and I, my mother and my sister, exactly alike.

He has sent me messages from the other side except for a brief interruption which was partially my fault but now those messages will be back. I am sure of it. In fact, I just found an angel that I completely forgot about and now she is hanging happily from my crisp, new bulletin board. There are no more words, except to say, Daddy, I love you, I miss you, I’ll always miss the dad that you were to me. I miss your bear hugs where I knew I felt so loved and safe. I miss you being in my corner supporting me. I will never stop missing that. Happy Birthday, Daddy. Love, from “The Little One.(8)”

Love Always, Mom

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A MOTHER’S OPEN AND HONEST LETTER

Happy almost 21st birthday _______. You know I’m staying up to midnight, right? How could a mom miss the minute her ______ turns 21? It’s a milestone and one that you have looked forward to for many years. I know that you can buy alcohol legally now, not really a thing I get excited about. I’m not stupid, gullible yes. I asked you to take a sober picture of  yourself on or before your birthday and I knew you would remember.

That’s the kind of kid you are and that’s probably why I’m crying now (you expected it, I know.) You have always been a tremendously kind person, in fact, when you were little I had to teach you to be assertive. You were so easy-going that at nursery school if another kid grabbed the toy you were playing with you would just let them. You would happily go on to play with something else. I remember this as if it was yesterday, we sat down in your room and played with toys and we practiced. “I’m playing with this now but when I’m done its your turn OR ” want to play with this together.” I believe you liked the second option better.

When you were born, literally born, you didn’t cry at first, why not? You started a few seconds ( which felt like hours) later but your nickname was Buddha Baby. You were always peaceful, serene, happy and the only time you cried was when you didn’t feel well. You took long naps, slept through the night early on and the only time you cried was when you were sick. Sure enough, you would have a double ear infection. You were the sweetest baby ever and yes, a part of you will always be like that.

It’s not to stay that you weren’t an obnoxious teenager sometimes, don’t get me wrong. I’m not going to lie to you. That would never work anyway because you see right through me. You can judge my mood on the “hello?” of the telephone. We have a very strong connection, I hope we always will. I’m grateful for what we have had. And, by the way, the “assertive” thing, I think you learned that too well, maybe I shouldn’t have taught you after all because as a first sibling and as a Scorpio you are a bossy, strong-headed, stubborn person. But, it’s not true, right? Let’s argue about it!! You can be the good person and I can be the bad one person…

I just want to say almost Happy Birthday from a mom who loves you with all her heart. I am proud of you as a ______, as a person and I know you will make a difference in this world. You already have. You are a wonderful _____________and I  couldn’t ask for anyone who is a better_____ than you.  I’ve told you before I not only love you but I like you, everyone likes you.

Thank you for being in my life, you bring me great joy and I will always have a special place in my heart for you.

I love you ____________

Love always, Mom

Happy Birthday In Heaven

Delicious...........................

Delicious……………………… (Photo credit: ANDI2..)

Dear Lore,

It’s the day in the middle of our two birthdays. I missed your call to me yesterday and will miss my call to you tomorrow, but at least I remember your voice in my head and heart. It was a tradition for as long as I can remember. Every year we knew that our phones would ring, and every year, without fail, we would send each other a card. It was a tradition, a phone call and a card on two days, one day apart. I think I miss you more now than when you died. I really do. You understood me like no one else, we had the same temperament and you would give me advice. You were friends with my mother and I know she dearly misses you too. But to me, you were my favorite “Aunt” and a friend.

Tomorrow, I will not light a candle for you, you would hate that, but I will eat a lovely piece of chocolate in honor of you. You gave me my first job working for you in your European chocolate shop on Lefferts Boulevard in Kew Gardens. It believe it was called Mimi’s from the previous owner. People envied me that job and I can hear you say “and why shouldn’t they?” I pretended to dust, replace chocolate on the silver trays (while sampling in the back) and we talked a great deal and ordered pizza for lunch. I tell people now that “just because chocolate turns a little white doesn’t mean it’s gone bad.” I did learn something, see? .

It was 1977 and I was going to my first year in college in September and you and Edward surprised me by buying me a pair of designer jeans that I picked out at the jeans boutique down the street. I thought that it was the most generous thing that anyone had ever gotten me, you crocheted me a blanket too and it was on my college bed. Yes, I still have it. You sent me home-made Krispie -like treats to college, big batches and I was so happy.

There is just ONE thing I take exception too and I’m sure I speak for Diane (your real niece) as well. You called us each  “Augustus” telling both of us we were the ONLY “Augustus.” I would call you up and say this is “Augustus.” Only at your funeral did your real niece (and doctor) Diane and I realize you fooled us both, it was rather a funny moment when two grown women acted like 5-year-old children saying “I was Augustus” no, “I was Augustus.” You cheated on us, but we both were well-loved by you, love for two very different, wonderful people. Leave it to you to find a way to make us laugh at your own funeral, I have a hunch you planned it that way.

So I say to you, beloved friend, beloved fake Aunt,  Happy Birthday in Heaven. I truly miss you and I love you.

Love,

Augustus (1 or 2)

angel

angel (Photo credit: M@rg)

Photo credits to above mentioned photographers,no rights of mine.

Writing @ LAF Publishing

Krispie treats  home -made

Mellow Yellow Monday: Yellow Roses in a Yellow Vase

Rose Study # 2

Rose Study # 2 (Photo credit: Donald Macleod)

It was my birthday last week and knowing how much I love the color YELLOW, my mom (with the help of my darling husband) bought me 6 yellow roses in a beautiful yellow vase. It was perfect and I loved it so much. Thank you, Mama!

Haiku Heights: Forget-Me-Nots

English: Forget-me-nots

English: Forget-me-nots (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Longing, green eyes meet

raw, fresh, across a full moon

Instant attraction.

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The joy of my love,

Rose petals strewn in my heart

gift of young, sweet life.              (happy 18th birthday to my daughter, Jillian)

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Thunder strikes silver

Bullets scream out blood, guts, hope

Death of trust and life.

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Mellow Yellow Monday: My Favorite Color Of All: Yellow Roses

yellow_rose

yellow_rose (Photo credit: pepperazzi)

Mellow Yellow Roses, (would be a great idea for my birthday, please.)

My favorite color and my favorite flower now joining hands, with glee.

Yellow roses, sprung from Nature to fill me with delight and joy.

Happiness, to me, comes in Yellow.

Would you like to be my Mellow Yellow Friend?

Going Crazy Fast

Crazy Gia
I want to drop, like a rag doll, on the wet-soaked grass, kick my arms and legs, up and down and scream. Holler. Curse. I want to have a tantrum worthy of an overtired three-year old child that has had too much sugar and not enough sleep and way too many unanswered demands. No inhibitions and no one, not even “The Nanny” could try to calm me down because I can’t be talked down today, no, not today.

Things are closing in on me and I’m having a meltdown and I feel like I’m going crazy. It started as soon as I woke up way too early this morning. My seventeen year old daughter slept her day off from school while I walked the dog, purchased my cherished coffee from Starbucks and tried to absorb Vitamin D, my head pointed towards the sun on an old, run down wooden bench. The world seemed tilted left, all too much to one side, off-balance, like a triangle gone awry, unsteady.

There are those days, now far too common, when the whole day and night feel off. This evening I had a scare, in front of my dog, when she was scratching herself viciously and I felt a lump in her fur and then I couldn’t find it again. How could I not find it again? I kept looking but I didn’t feel it or see it and she looked at me with those melting, trusting brown eyes. I was ashamed I couldn’t find it again and worried so I cried a little, gave her a cookie, nuzzled her neck and she was happy. I felt only a bit better but still not quite right. I’m worried about her so I will calm down and take her to the vet next week so he can calmly examine her.

My feelings scared me tonight.  I brought home a piece of shiny, honey drenched baklava from the diner so I can drown my sorrows in sweet syrup. Believe me, yes, I will resort to that low or that high, depending on the way you look at things. I will spare no expense to body or mind to make myself feel better tonight and to promise myself a better tomorrow. I know it doesn’t always work. It didn’t help at all, there are too many issues going on at once.

I have been stuck in this one room with the whole family for three months now and the walls are closing in on me. Our house is not ready to move back in yet but closer than before; maybe all the tension is starting to release now, now that it looks like the house may actually get fixed in real time.  Maybe I am starting to breath now instead of holding it in and the anger is starting t0 come out.

I want to sleep all the time, because right after my dreadful birthday in October the clock moves straight to here, the horrible time period: my deceased father’s birthday on the 13th 0f November straight through to Thanksgiving and Christmas, Chanukah and New Year’s Eve, the night he died and then New Year’s Day, my parent’s wedding anniversary. I kick it up a notch and remember January 5th, my grandmother’s birthday (my father’s mother) and the day we buried my father. Come January 6th, deep in the winter months I can start to breathe, that is until next year. But, as an insightful person and psychiatrist once said: ” I guess every November stinks for you.”

Genius.