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The Grieving

Today I cried during a follow-up exam with my nurse practitioner, then again later in front of the very nice social security clerk as he handed over the $250 death benefit I received because Bret died, and then a third time while driving in the car listening to an Avett Brothers song. I also smiled at a joke, checked off most of the stuff on my to-do list and while standing in line at Starbucks waiting to order my grande Americano, no room, had a sparkling conversation with the gentleman standing next to me in line. "Yeah baby, I still got it!" 

I also wrote - like I do everyday. It's therapy all tangled up in a love, loss mix and it is what I have been putting off for 30 years. The creative tug pulls me from my slumber every morning, write, write, write. Meals are skipped - write, write, write. The right side of my brain flexing and stretching everyday as the chemicals of creativity flush through each axon - rapid fiber nerve response - the delightful tension of these sensations flooding through my body. A satisfying response that has me coming back for more. [...]

Dragon Slayer

Be a dragon slayer!

In the late spring, Bret and I were asked to film a promo spot that was to air this November during Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month. But last summer time moved in a macabre dance - either too slow or too fast and the spot was never filmed. Still, here I am.[...]

No Funeral

 

It’s February 10th, 2018, and Bret and I are at a friend’s annual Valentine’s Party. Bret is in the middle of a daunting but ineffective round of chemo so he feels physically puny and he must be mentally freaked because their is an elephant trying to push his way through the doorway to our home. One giant leg and a trunk are already through and though I keep pushing back, I am losing traction. Yeah, we are both freaked. Because of chemo and elephant and Bret’s frequent bouts of social phobia, I had pretty much decided that we would not be attending tonight's party, but Bret insisted. He did that for me. Our last Valentine’s Party. For me.[...]

Tossing Boulders

I’m not sure exactly what to say - what to write. There is so much going through my head:  I want to preach from the mountain, sound-out from the street corners, storm the barricade, and shake everyone of you until you listen. Until comprehension slides across your face like the dawning sun. I am crazed. Maddened - to change the world. To change our expectations. To fix this. To fix what I could not fix...and perhaps that is why I struggle with these words:  I’m still too focused on fixing what I couldn’t instead of fixing what I can.[...]

Weeding Party, Part II

For my local friends: 

Got a gaggle of friends joining in tomorrow to weed and prune and eat chili and drink beer. It's going to rain. So attendance is up to you...no matter what the weather there will still be chili, beer....and weeds. Oh and there will be nothing, NOTHING, pumpkin spice flavored. It is still summer.[...]

Closing Up Shop

We’re closing up shop today - Bret’s shop. The hobby that became his life’s work started out in an old greenhouse in Rising Fawn, Ga then moved to a garage. When the garage was no longer an option and Bret was desperate as to what to do next I convinced him to work from the spare bedroom in our home that he inherited from his mother. He had been avoiding that room - the room where she died in his arms from cancer. But a two year cushion of time and necessity softened the pain and allowed for that possibility. We put our first Internet capable computer in that room and it was there, in 1994, that we first dialed up AOL. Over the next few years that shop spilled out into our living room, kitchen and back porch until the need became greater than our lack of disposable income and Bret took the plunge and signed a lease for a real space - his shop.[...]

Weeding

All - Though I still have a few more things I want to post  about this journey that my family has been on over the two years, in the coming weeks I will be closing shop here on Post Hope. The content posted here will stay accessible but there will most likely be no more entries. 

I am still writing - exploring this new place in my life and I'll be sharing that info with you when it is available. But for today there is Weeding...[...]

A Life, Well-Lived

In the week since we honored  Bret with a celebration of a Life Well-Lived, several people in attendance that day have asked that I share what I said before I read the story of how we met, Circumstance (published in the previous post). [...]

Circumstance

About six weeks before Bret died, he and I were talking about the story of how we met - revisiting those days because when when you are dying it’s hard to go forward and so you look back...and that is not really such a sad thing,  it becomes instead a rare thing of beauty. It completes your family story.[...]

Day 5

Day 5

On the fifth day following my husband's death I decided to go to Costco. I needed paper towels and garbage bags and limes, in bulk. I would have gone to the grocery store nearest my home but they're closing soon and yesterday when Trevor and I went to get dog food the shelves were mostly empty,  creating an atmosphere of such melancholy that we both knew that we would never be back. Grocery store as a metaphor for my dead husband.[...]