Dear Daddy,

I’ve meant to write you for a couple of days but now I NEED to write you. You were always there for me when times were tough, especially when times were tough. You were the only person who really knew me because our personalities were so similar.

I know I’m just having a very bad day and they happen from time to time but this one is unusual. I feel like I’m getting beaten up by everybody

and I don’t know why. I don’t have you here to defend me or to want to get back at the people who are making me sad. I do know that if you could, you would although I’m not so sure you would defend mom.

No matter what she did, you defended her but her tone today, I know, you would have been the one to say “take it easy” and she would have listened. Her ordering me around like she is the commander and I’m the soldier was horrible. Something is not right. Does she think that the holiday season is only hard on her?

Losing Lola and Don and Ellen were tragic losses, believe me, I know. I went to the funerals of two of them with her. Anna went to one of them so she was always supported. There’s not much else anyone can really do. Both Emma and I call her every day, she boasts about that to her friends but sometimes  it seems I can do nothing right. At least that’s how it feels to me.

I’m not in their club of two, my sister and mom, they are so similar and our club, you and me, doesn’t exist anymore, talk about grief. Yes, I know it’s a rough time of year, with you dying on New Year’s Eve

and you and mom’s anniversary on New Year’s Day! Not such good timing, Dad. I  remember our last Christmas but the grief comes back in waves of sadness and anger. You should be here, playing Santa and ringing the stupid bell you always rang. If only you could come back for just one minute to ring that bell and to give me a hug that I so desperately need from you now.

Well, the day is almost over, I’m hiding in my bedroom, yeah I know, not the right solution but that’s okay, I just need a little time to myself. Your granddaughter is out having fun and your grandson will be home tomorrow. At the moment he is the one worrying because, like me, he is so intuitive and he heard my voice on the phone. I know I worry too much, oh stop laughing, but I try not to do that. I can’t help it if I read headlines and get scared. As most parents, I worry about my children.

You know I love you, of course you do, thank you for the signs you send me (I could use one soon, please.) Do I wish you a Merry Christmas in Heaven? It’s been so many years  you would think my grief would have mellowed but today it is raw. I don’t understand that at all.

I’m going to play some music now and settle down, I know I’ll be fine in a few minutes. You know I’ll be fine, I always remember what you and Mom said: “That beneath the mushiness, deep down, I am steel” and I know that’s true. I’ve had to be many times in my life. I love and miss you so much but I am glad you are not in pain anymore, that’s for sure. Say hi to Lore for me, quite a prank she pulled on us at her funeral. It seems like Diane and I both thought we were the sole “Augusta.” Only Lore could get away with that. Please tell her I miss her too, I really do.

All my love,

Your little mouse

PS The dog just pushed the door open, jumped up on the bed and kissed my whole face which she generally doesn’t do. She knew I was sad, I feel better already.

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Haiku Horizons, Ruby

Rubies sparkle, stir

magic sniffs the air with lust

black velvet, bright red

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“Ruby Tuesday” blares

 

kicking back, weed, cheap vodka

 

He sighs, I miss that.

 

 

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My ruby-red, lips,

strawberry colored sad tears

As he slips away.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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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.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Yellow Friday

In the past there were groups on favorite colors with deadlines and stress. This Happy Yellow Friday is for anyone who loves the color yellow like I do. Once a week, on Fridays I will post something that has yellow in it.

Feel free to post photos you like with yellow in it here too. I do this at the very start of Winter which really makes me Blue.

Friday, October 31, 2014, # 1

Yum, candy corn.

6 Weeks

We were told by his adult children that he was supposed to die from an inoperable, aggressive brain tumor within six weeks, that was at least three months ago. I thought, for sure, he would die when he was told his wife had passed away but, again, he was so relieved, so grateful she was out of her pain that he actually felt and looked a bit better. Nobody could change or help his diagnosis, he had an inoperable brain tumor but his spirit was so relieved that the love of his life was free of pain and free of suffering, he felt just a little better. They knew his wife was going to die in one or two days and they were correct. You could see relief sketched on his face yet he was not allowed to go to her funeral, he was in hospice care.

Many years ago, when my father laid, by himself, in a hospital room, in another state I called at the exact time when a freshly minted unsettled female voice said:”something has just happened and that the doctors are working on him now.” I didn’t understand, I had no idea what she was talking about but I remember calling my mother. I never thought about it like this but I guess I was there at his death as well. We were together and I still left him that sacred message, so did my mom. “It was okay to go, it was okay, we would take care of each other…”

The cardiologist called me and I asked him if I should come? His voice was gentle, I remember that, and he said “Sweetie, you won’t make it in time, don’t come.” ” Do you promise?” I asked through wracking sobs? “Yes”, he promised. Moments later, my father was dead. I didn’t know until a few days ago my mom had made the same call and was told the same thing. She was ready to drive there alone, in the dark, even though she was terrified to drive.

He had crashed in the hospital while under observation with a fatal heart attack. He had suffered heart attacks before. I still see that digital clock in my mind, the one my dad had given me so many years ago, well, “sold” to me even after all these years. My own children were across the hall, mere babies. I see their sweet, innocent faces, me in my bed, a moment, frozen in time. It was 10:20 pm.

I thought I would never be able to feel happiness again but I did though it was different. I was different as well. Before and After Different. That’s how I now measured my life, in a lot of things.

There are always new phases in our lives, new beginnings, new endings, new chapters, the closures, doors slammed and opened. Right now we are in the middle of a chapter and can’t seem to go forward or back, we are stuck, like dead birds smashed against a windowpane.

Eventually, we will move on. It may take some more time but life does not have to be stagnant forever although sometimes it feels that way. Turn that attitude around and enjoy what you have instead of what you don’t know. Nestle in comfort for the time being. Luxuriate in proximity, memories, familiarity and family.

Change will come, whether you are ready for it or not, it will sneak in like a softly padded black cat stealthily coming in the darkened bedroom, with only green cat eyes following every step you take.

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Too Much Death In The Air

I haven’t written. I know. I’m down. Way down. I admit it. The scent of death lurking in the air. Gail, John’s wife is dead. John has an inoperable brain tumor, everyone wishes he would die, especially him. He only has days to live, Gail died yesterday. These people were like part of my family. They loved our dog, once they had their own dog. It brought back memories for them. Sweet memories.

Waiting. In tears, or on the verge of, always. Like now, all the time. Writing it down doesn’t make it easier or harder, there is no solution. Nothing can resolve this miserable situation, not a funeral, not two funerals.

Only, if they were buried together, if he died too, in the next two days, then, I could somehow see something positive because they were meant to be together always, married together, buried together. Everyone would feel better. When you tell a terminally ill brain tumor patient that his wife has passed and he says “Thank God” what does that mean?

Her suffering was more important to him than his own. I can’t seem to get over this very personal story, this couple, extended family, invited to every birthday party of my children, every summer barbecue for years.

When my father was alive they were my parents’ best friends, very best friends. When my dad died, they “adopted” my mother, were so wonderful to her, every day. When the wife coveted a certain kind of brownie I would buy it for because she loved nothing more than chocolate, except her husband, always her husband.

Somewhere, this must be bringing up my father’s funeral inside me, it has to be, I am sobbing in that way, down deep place that there is no control over. Of course it would bring up his death. I am really slow. My mother, who would never acknowledge this about herself has lost her two closest friends, while she may not relate this to her husband’s death, deep down she will feel it unconsciously.

I feel helpless and I acknowledge I am helpless. I am oversensitive and needy. I ask friends for reassurance, while direct, is not necessary. Because once asked, does it really mean the same thing? I regret asking now.

Taking a short break from social media where some people are cruel with their words, there is no room in my life for cruelty of any kind.  I want to be moving and doing and yet, I remain huddled in bed. Last night I crashed at 8:30 pm and I am still in bed at 11:00 am with no motivation to move.

Everyone wants them to be buried together at the same time. It would give the story some meaning, a tiny bit of meaning.

I cry, I dry my eyes, I cry again.

 

One Of Our Own

When the sudden death of Robin Williams became known on Sunday night, slowly at first, you could hear people gasp as they looked at their phones or their televisions or answered a phone call from a friend. Nobody expected this and many, including myself, said out loud “Robin William is DEAD?” As if this was not entirely possible.

For those of us in the baby boomer age range we took it harder than most, Robin Williams was one of our own, he was in our age group, we felt we knew him a tiny bit, having grown up with him and the shows he was on.

Robin Williams and Pam Dawber as Mork and Mindy

Robin Williams and Pam Dawber as Mork and Mindy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We started with Mork and Mindy but that never impressed us as much as future roles because then, we thought he was just acting, remembering lines, doing physical comedy to perfection. Only later did we find out that he was improvising the entire time, words bouncing off him like soccer balls on a field.

Many people have died, many actors and actresses, and later, the same day the beloved Lauren Bacall died but yet she was barely mentioned. “She had a good, long life” people said, almost as if her death was not as important as Robin’s. Robin’s death was a choice, some would say, he committed suicide but I don’t think if he was in his right mind that he would have made that same choice. Maybe that’s just wishful thinking on my part.

Robin was ill, mentally ill and apparently he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease years ago but had suffered with that diagnosis in silence. He was not yet ready to share this new pain with the world. I don’t know what kind of therapists or medications he was on when he died but I am sure he had access to the best doctor’s anywhere. Yet, even they could not help him.

English: Robin Williams, U.S. actor, at the 20...

English: Robin Williams, U.S. actor, at the 2008 BBC World Debate. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My own father had open heart surgery, a quadruple by-pass operation in the city over twenty years ago and no one at that time told us of that depression would be a likely side effect down the road.  He went to one of the best doctors in NYC. While the operation itself “was a success” we had no idea what was happening years after when he sunk into a deep depression. Yes, he did see a professional and he did swallow pills. He wasn’t always depressed, it came and went in spurts but I don’t think he was ever the same.

Deep inside I know he wanted to die but I made him promise me not to ever take his life. He promised. He had physical problems as well and they became more pronounced as he got older and more frail. I knew, through instinct, that he would die in three months time from a variety of reasons. I felt it, I am an “empath intuitive,” I knew from the way my dad showed it to me, the things he said. I confirmed it with a person I trusted.

Let’s try to take care of each other, not only when we seem overtly sad or depressed but also, when we don’t. Look behind the laughter, watch out for each other, be kind always.

 

Even My Tears Cry Tears

 

Father’s Day, 2014 Edition

 

HAPPY FATHERS DAY

HAPPY FATHERS DAY (Photo credit: Insight Imaging: John A Ryan Photography)

Father’s Day is coming, it’s just around the corner. I dread that holiday more than I now dread Christmas, the holiday that my dad and I used to love the most.

My dad has been dead twelve years now, one would think, I would have gotten used to the concept. But, no. I am never  ready for this day. I find myself, each year, being caught unaware with different triggers.

I think there is something very wrong with me. I mean it.

Am I stupid? Very possibly.

I have no dad.

My dad is dead.

 

 

 

Description unavailable

Description unavailable (Photo credit: wakingphotolife:)

 

English: Portrait of 1-year-old baby girl

English: Portrait of 1-year-old baby girl (Photo credit: Wikipedia)My father was the nurturer in the family, the closest in temperament to me, we understood each other with a glance or a smile; similar to the relationship I have with my son. The same type of thinking, parallel ways of feeling.

 

It seems to be Father’s Day again, some Holidays move around the Earth at a quicker pace, don’t you think? Birthdays, when you are older, seem to flash by in a second or two.

Am I stupid? Very possibly so. Can I not learn to get used to it?

Evidently, not.

 

Even writing these words down bring unwanted tears to my tired, blood-shot, green eyes.  I furiously blink away threatening tears.

Twelve years, it’s not like it happened yesterday but sometimes it feels like that, raw like a knife wound.

If it hasn’t gone away by now I don’t think there’s a chance it will ever go away.

So, naturally, when I was in the store a few weeks ago, once again, I headed straight for the Father’s Day section of cards. But this time, I did not actually look through the cards. I noticed where I was and quickly turned around after admonishing myself, without skipping a beat. To me, that’s progress. I didn’t stand in the aisle sobbing like I have done in years past.

There are just some things you can’t get used to, this is one of them.

For all of you who still have your Dads, please cherish them. For the dad of my children, I honor and cherish you and for my friend Alice’s father, JB, who tries to make me feel included even when I am not, I say, thank you.

Happy Father’s Day to the father figure that you do have, be it a friend, a neighbor, an uncle or a cousin, a brother…

And, if you don’t have a father figure in your life, you are even MORE special. Because you have a mom who is mother and father to YOU.  Kiss your Mom, once on each cheek because she makes EVERYTHING worthwhile. I congratulate HER.

forget-me-not - wild form

forget-me-not – wild form (Photo credit: joysaphine)

 

 

 

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Loving The Ocean, Settling For A Lake?

Dear Fibromyalgia,

Another loss, another dream dashed, this one really hurts. All my life my dream was to live in a small house near the ocean. It was my fantasy, the one thing that I could think about when I felt a little down or when the Winter seemed unending.

Rainbow Waves

Rainbow Waves (Photo credit: The Uprooted Photographer)

Someday…I told myself, I will live in a beach house, and swim in the ocean. To me, the ocean is life, it is majestic, magical. It is the one source of pleasure I can count on, always.

Ever since I was a child my favorite activity would be to collect shells, to feel their shape between my fingers. What were the dominant colors? I used one as a “worry stone” others shaped like hearts I would give to my children. Another one with a little hole on top, I used as a necklace.

Seashell

Seashell (Photo credit: Moyan_Brenn (back soon, sorry for not commenting))

When I was hot, I would drift into the ocean between the two green flags and submerge my whole body and head into the oncoming waves. I was not a timid swimmer. I loved to jump wave after wave, it was thrilling for a scaredy-cat like me. It was adventurous and bold for someone scared to take chances.

In the water I was brave, confident, and happy. It was hard to get me out of the water but when I came out, usually under protest, I was out only until my swimsuit was dry, and then I went back in. I never had the patience to lie in the sun just to get a tan. Never. If I was in the sun for more than three minutes, it was far too long.

The beach was MY place. My secret place. I can’t even allow myself to have the fantasy anymore which saddens me. I have no balance and no strength since I got Fibromyalgia, seven years ago. My life was stolen from me, little by little. The last time I went into the ocean was in Florida, three years ago, with my daughter, and I couldn’t get up out of the water. I kept getting thrown under, again and again until I couldn’t breathe.

Fibromyalgia Eye

Fibromyalgia Eye (Photo credit: Vinally2010)

I needed her to help me get up. It took several times.

I lost part of myself that day and every day since. I know now that it IS a progressive disease, I feel it. I know with time I have gotten worse; my dream will never come true.

Beautiful, Tranquil Water

Beautiful, Tranquil Water (Photo credit: BrotherMagneto)

If I ever get to live close to the water it will have to be a lake but that’s not nearly the same as the ocean, not even close. Dreams die, health fades, burdens multiply. We cannot do anything else but accept. Accepting graciously is one option. I’m not there yet.

So, Thanks Fibromyalgia, you not only messed with my body this time, you messed with my dreams and emotions too. Way to go.

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I Have No Idea How The Whole Thing Works

English:

English: (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Why is Happiness so fleeting when Sadness lingers around like a viral infection, effecting not just you but everyone near you? It spreads too, so easy to catch, physically and emotionally.

Happiness is a moment or two, the snap, pop, gasp of a sudden leap of joy which feels incredibly good, magical, in fact. Like those first moments of falling in love…  but that first gasp, that amazing, weird feeling in your stomach where you can’t possibly eat because you are a jumble of nerves and anticipation, that ends quickly to the “gasp” that perfect O of your mouth, your tongue wetting your lips that dissipates too. After a while, a long or short while, reality sets in and you still do love your partner but “in love?” not so much.

Things, that at first, take on such importance: the first phone call is electrifying and intense, you can still remember the feeling of your aching cheeks. It came with  dancing eyes and a smile so big that you could light the world with its brilliance.

Sadness.

Sadness. (Photo credit: Neil. Moralee)

It doesn’t last long but you do remember it from time to time with great fondness and sometimes regret and yes, you still love “your” person.

Passion can dip, with maturity, marriage, work, children, time…you can sleep in separate bedrooms because “he snores or she snores” or she can’t fall asleep and he needs to go to bed early because he gets tired easily and they are just older now.

You make compromises,sometimes you just have to give in. It becomes okay that he hates to go dancing, his dancing awkward and stiff but how she loves to go on picnics  and he adamantly refuses. Asking why “I just don’t” is not a reasonable explanation for an adult conversation. You settle, you don’t want to wreck the family boat over a salami and cheese sandwich. But, it’s another tear that drops in the sadness bucket.

Now, people are both stuck in the mud, the same old, grimy, brown mud. Are they completely happy? Is everything perfect? No, of course not, I don’t think anything could be. But, you get to a certain age when your spouse is truly your best friend and you love each other and at this stage of your life, friendship, love, trust is really more than you can ask for and less than many people have. It is a blessing to love someone and to be loved by someone.

Sadness, however, deep, depressing, feeling blue and out of sorts lingers and follows you like a shadow. Wherever that black cloud of unhappiness gets deeper and.stays with you no matter how hard you try “to get over it” sometimes it refuses to budge These people need help, need to reach out for support from a doctor or medical professional and friends and maybe you need medication and to talk with a professional. In time, it will go away. And yes, for a small percent of lucky people it could be very short-lived and will float away on its own, the sky will clear and you can wake up feeling happy again.

We all go through a range of happiness and sadness on a daily basis, I’m talking about the above in extreme cases. Some people, (and it is definitely is NOT me) can hide their feelings so well and appear like a blank slate. Not a good match for me.

People are who they are, accept them or don’t but you can’t change them.

 

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