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BESSHAILE's Recent Blog Entries

October Is Whizzing By

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Whew. It's the 26th of October already! Less than a week left of this busy month that always includes so many events - birthdays, conventions, an anniversary. And this year, all happening while we're short staffed at work and Mercury is in retrograde!

As for the anniversary, usually I post a repeat story of How I Connected With Himself on my Other Blog. This year I forgot/didn't have time, but it's a sweet story and you can read it here:

likethequeen.blogspot.com/search?q=h
ey+baby


Most years I take this day off and we go out and celebrate - sometimes away from home, sometimes right here in our corner of heaven. 2014 was different - and fittingly so. The anniversary falls on my sister's birthday and this year it also fell on the night of the James River Art League's 50th anniversary party. This organization was born in our living room when I was 12 and Mama was its first president. In fact, in the booklet about the history of the organization was a photo of the first membership roster and I even recognized my old typewriter - the old Royal that Daddy gave me after he'd bought himself an electric typewriter. Oh how many homework assignments got banged out on that old machine. The font was as familiar as handwriting.

They planned to do a retrospective program that included photos and stories from those early years, so late in the afternoon, Himself and I drove off to the city to attend the party with the birthday sister and her husband. It was a lovely event. There was even someone who remembered those early days and could chat with me about Mama. Sister and I had shared some Mama stories with the speakers and they then shared them with the group. It was a sweet evening, the first time I've ever spent with my sister and how fitting to be doing it while talking about art and Mama and days of long ago.



I even won a door prize - and so did ThePrince!

We followed that happy celebratory evening with a weekend of beyond incredible fun with Cousins T and C. Friday we drove back to Richmond to spend the night with the cousins and Saturday we piled into their big car and drove up to Farmville to ride the High Bridge Trail State Park again. I'd had the foresight to reserve 4 bikes the week before - after all - state park, glorious October weekend, perfect weather, yeah ... I didn't think we stood a chance as walk-in customers. There were only 4 bikes left at 10:30 and those had our names on them.



Pretty festive sounding October, huh? Well you ain't heard nothin' yet. With but a single weekend day to recoup after biking 22 miles and dining like it was our last meal at La Cucina (to die for food with generous - no, heaping - helpings) I jumped into this past week with a vengeance. There was a speaking engagement at a sort of near-by library, followed by a catch-up visit with dear friends. Then there was a 7 a.m. breakfast meeting where I did more library promoting. This was followed by 3 days of conventioneering in my number 1 tourist town, Williamsburg, VA. Alas. I never did get to stroll down the colonial part - which is my favorite - but I did get to wear a Martha Washington wig and emcee a quiz show. (somebody took a photo but nobody's posted it anywhere) And there was shopping therapy on the way home - including yarn - and a 40" Sock Rocket circular needle. I've been longing to try them and now I can, just in time for Christmas Sock Knitting!

Yesterday there was more travel, to a wedding of a beautiful girl cousin to the sweetest guy, put on by truly beloved family. The weather dot com guys promised us mild weather without any wind - after several blue but blustery days and boy did they deliver. Usually at weddings and such I take the photos - leaving Himself to do the fun thing with guys - but he did snap this one of me:



Yes. I am That Woman at every funeral or wedding. The one with the hat on.

And I ate up every last spare calorie I had for this week. Of course, I'd always intended to do that so I'd been trying, with some success, to save them. I am on vegetable soup and lean protein for the next 2 days. The feast was unusual but tasty and the cake was divine. As a rule I only really like the almond flavored, fine grain, pound cake type wedding cake. Obviously I was imprinted as a child about these things and frequently I am disappointed when brides get creative with their wedding cake. Not this time - not this cake. This was a Tiramisu Cake and it was out of this world. Different, yes, but a perfect blend of flavors that still had the taste of "Wedding Cake".

And so, after a whirlwind 10 days I am truly home at last. I plan to have a stern talking-to with my refrigerator. I am sure I can convince it to not play any dirty tricks on me. I am no where near goal - in spite of my good intentions and planning efforts. Perhaps I ought to have had good efforts instead of good plans, hmmm?

I'll take the rest of today to plot out more detailed steps to put me back in the happy goal range - because Thanksgiving is looming up ahead and after that - Christmas - and Bourbon Balls. It'll be interesting (at least, to me it will be) to see what I come up with.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KANSASROSE67 10/27/2014 1:18PM

    Sounds like an absolutely wonderful few days...and really worthwhile splurging!

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BETHGILLIGAN 10/27/2014 8:30AM

    Sounds like you have been having lots of fun with friends and family! Good for you!! Happy Anniversary to you and hubby!! I can't believe we're heading into the holidays already!! Have a great week!

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SHEILA1505 10/27/2014 3:07AM

    No wonder you cherish memories of 16 October
Hugs
xxx

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MLC721 10/26/2014 6:25PM

    Hope the coming week is very uneventful for you so you can rest and get it all going again. Sounds like it's time for the "brains" to have a conversation! You are so creative!

Loved the pictures and your wonderful memories of your mother.

Marsha/TN

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MARYJEANSL 10/26/2014 4:30PM

  You certainly managed to cram a lot of living into October! It sounds like it was *so* much fun.

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THEMFOLK 10/26/2014 4:25PM

    Beautiful story! Thanks for sharing!

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TIFFFIT 10/26/2014 1:08PM

    James River Art League? Must be close to where I grew up in southeastern VA. :-)

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123ELAINE456 10/26/2014 12:56PM

  These are Beautiful Photos. That was wonderful that your sister and you got to share a lot of memories and stories of you mother and the past years. God Blessings Always. Have a Wonderful Week. Good Thoughts, Prayers and Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Coming Your Way. Take Care and Stay Healthy. Hope that you had a Wonderful 10 Day Vacation with the Family and Friends too.

Comment edited on: 10/26/2014 12:57:55 PM

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NASFKAB 10/26/2014 10:51AM

  lovely stories thanks for sharing

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ICECUB 10/26/2014 10:01AM

    THANK YOU FOR SHARING YOUR SWEET STORY AND PICTURES. I AM GLAD YOU AND YOUR SISTER CAN SHARE HAPPY MEMORIES TOGETHER. I THINK THERE IS COMFORT IN THAT. HAVE A GREAT SUNDAY.

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KANOE10 10/26/2014 9:21AM

    I love your pictures and your hat is so cute~How nice that you and your sister shared stories if your mother. What a busy October for you! I am also quite aware of the holidays coming and would like to be down a few pounds first!

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At Least I Saved The Plan

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Grrr. I wrote a lovely RB/LB blog but it got eaten due to erroneous html (even though I am sure I did NOT put in any html. Computers. Bah.

and of course you can never recapture a RB/LB conversation once it's lost. But those two brains of mine did come up with a plan to get back into my skinny clothes. I have a terribly busy schedule over the next 4 weeks with almost zero gym time. And the weight has been hovering between 4 and 6 lbs above my goal; just enough to make waistbands tight. Not a fun way to be dressed.

The plan is:

1. walk my dogs every morning unless it's pouring down rain.
2. eat between 26 and 29 points 4 days a week. (that's 1300 - 1450 calories)
3. Once a day write down how I'm FEELING just before I eat a meal - mostly it will be dinners but sometimes it can be lunch. I always know how I feel at breakfast - great, hungry but not starving. It's those two other meals that I need to get a handle on.


Not an elaborate plan but I think it will pull things into perspective. As for those brains - well, harumph.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

123ELAINE456 10/15/2014 7:41PM

  Sounds like a Great Plan. You Can Do It!!! Take One Day At A Time. WTG!!! God Blessings Always. Have a Terrific Day. Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!Take Care of Yourself and Stay Healthy.

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MARYJEANSL 10/15/2014 6:59PM

  Sounds like a good plan to me. Those last few pounds are a pain!

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CONFIDENTLYFIT 10/15/2014 3:47PM

    I think it is commendable that you did not give up on the blog, or the eating plan. You certainly have determination.
I recognize the points talk. I used to be a WW leader in a previous body emoticon

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NASFKAB 10/15/2014 11:49AM

  great workable plan thanks for sharing all the best

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CHRISTIECAT 10/15/2014 10:46AM

    emoticon

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MSLZZY 10/15/2014 8:58AM

    A great plan! emoticon

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SANDICANE 10/15/2014 8:57AM

    What a great plan..it's simple...it's easy...and it will work! Onward we go....

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ICECUB 10/15/2014 8:13AM

    THAT HAPPENS TO ME ALL THE TIME. VERY FRUSTRATING. I CAN NEVER REMEMBER EXACTLY WHAT I WANT TO SAY.

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TORTISE110 10/15/2014 8:13AM

    I like the way you have streamlined what you want to do to fit with your responsibilities, Bess. I bet it will work. Sure hope so.

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KELLIEBEAN 10/15/2014 8:02AM

    I have lost blogs like that in the past. So frustrating. I found the greater than and less than characters were the culprit. I couldn't even put them in this comment. When I tried to post, I got a message to "remove any profanity or HTML from your comment"

Great plan! I think simple plans are the most successful! You've got this.

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KELLIEBEAN 10/15/2014 8:01AM

    Deleting duplicate post. Not sure how that happened.

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Comment edited on: 10/15/2014 8:03:06 AM

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SLIMMERJESSE 10/15/2014 8:00AM

    Not far from goal - good for you!

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BETHGILLIGAN 10/15/2014 7:49AM

    So sorry that blog went missing!! BUT, thankful that you still have your plan. And, it sounds like a good one. My weight loss has completely stalled. emoticon I will keep at it though! Have a great hump day!

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STEPH-KNEE 10/15/2014 7:34AM

    Okay, I think we are ALL mad that the computer ate your RB/LB blog, because those are little gems that we all need to read... I can imagine your frustration. I'm glad you have your plan sorted out! I am trying to work on forming a plan... Okay, I formed a plan but ti's in the trial stages to figure out if it's doable and if it's maintainable in the long run. Your plan sounds great and I like the "how are you feeling part", very clever! emoticon

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KANOE10 10/15/2014 7:33AM

    I am sorry you lost your blog. I feel the same way at work..way too busy and getting exercise in will be hard. You have good steps to handle this next weeks. I think it is great to tap into your feelings once a day! Good job of planning ahead and staying positive.


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It Gets Better

Saturday, October 04, 2014


I emoticon Tim Gunn and I seriously emoticon the message of the "It Gets Better Campaign". In fact - the message need not only be applied to sexual orientation. It's a message of hope for all the world in all its troubles - packed with the power of acknowledgement, patience, bravery and perseverance.

For me, for this past month, it is one of the lifelines I've clung to - that certain and sure knowledge that no matter how black the time feels, "It Gets Better". And it has. Yesterday I hear Mama call down from heaven and say "Alright now. You've cried enough."

This is not the first time she's said that to me. I am reminded of a black bleak evil time in 1994 when I was summarily fired by Time. No recourse. No unemployment. No 2 weeks severance. My son grew up and went off to college. How I hated that. How angry I was and how sad. Being that boy's mom was without a doubt the happiest must fun super rewarding joy filled creative love infested job in the whole wide world.

You say I'm still his mom? Well, of course I am. But I'm talking about the 'you are responsible for a growing-up child' part of being a mom and my god that was fun. But when it was over - it was truly over. I'd finished my part in his development and he was off to pick up all those responsibility threads himself. I did have the good grace to tell him to Pay No Attention To The Nutcase Behind The Curtain. I didn't want to ruin his fun - I just hated it that my routine, my duties, my world was changing.


The day he left for college I sat at the bottom of the staircase and wept the copious sobs of the inconsolable. For hours. With dogs licking my tears away only to prompt a fresh wave of them. After a while the telephone rang and when I picked it up it was Mama. Her first words were "Alright now. You've cried long enough."

Note - she did not say I wouldn't cry more. She just knew it was time for me to start giving over to the rest of my life. It took me 2 years to do that and in that time the most perfect Himself in the world did not divorce me. He is a saint. I would have divorced myself if I could have. She also didn't say "It gets better" which would have been trite and cruel at that moment, coming from such an Important Person. But she could have. I believe that if Tim Gunn had been standing by me he could have said it and it would have comforted me.

But she did say "Enough". That was the message I needed to hear from her then - and yesterday, a lightness of being filled my body sometime around 3:30 or 4 o'clock and I heard her say those inimitable words again. And on light feet, with a dancing heart, I finished out a monumentally difficult work week with a perfect score of problem solving and went home to a loving Himself, some great cheese and a really good bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon.


So trust me. Or at least, trust Tim Gunn. It Gets Better.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TORTISE110 10/15/2014 5:47AM

    I don't know why I did not see this earlier, Bess. (I do wish when we subscribed to a blog, that subsciption popped up all by itself when a friend posts. LOL) Anyway, I love the "enough" idea.

With the holidays ahead, I suspect you'll shed more tears about your mom. My emotions grow deeper over the years mine has been gone, for the better and sometimes the worse. I wish you sweet and light memories among the hard ones and the sad ones.

My Mom sent me an angel ornament when she knew my child was arriving. I love hanging it on the tree every year.

Toni

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SPARKED2BFIT 10/7/2014 1:32AM

    i love Tim and if he said those words to me, I think I'd find comfort in it. But sometimes the only words of comfort that actually brings the kind of comfort and meaning that no one else can give is still a mystery to me. Sometimes it can come from a dear loved one and sometimes it can come from a perfect stranger at the right time. I'm glad it's gotten better.

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ps... thanks for your encouragement and support on my latest blog, which is always appreciated. congrats on your progress and wishing you continued success. have a great week!

emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 10/7/2014 1:36:16 AM

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KANOE10 10/5/2014 8:58AM

    Sending you a warm hug. You mom was a wise woman. There is a point where you have to say you have cried enough and it is time to move on. Not easy. It does get better and I am so glad it got better for you with your sweet husband. I still cry when I leave my kids after a visit., I miss them.


Wine, cheese, and a supportive husband will make you feel better!

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STEPH-KNEE 10/5/2014 4:59AM

    You are so fabulous! emoticon emoticon

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123ELAINE456 10/4/2014 7:42PM

  A very Beautiful Story. Well Said. Love It. Be Kind To Yourself. God Blessings Always. Good Thoughts, Prayers and Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Coming Your Way. Have a Wonderful Week. May God Be With You Always. We have a very Loving Caring God that is there with you right now. He will pick you up when you fall and carry you all the time. Amen.

Comment edited on: 10/4/2014 7:43:56 PM

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MLC721 10/4/2014 6:53PM

    I hope the coming days find the dark clouds lifting more all the time. Be kind to yourself.
emoticon
Marsha

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KANSASROSE67 10/4/2014 4:23PM

    I never met your mama and yet I love her!

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TUTUNAN 10/4/2014 12:12PM

    emoticon

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ICECUB 10/4/2014 9:08AM

    BEAUTIFUL emoticon

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WORKNPROGRESS49 10/4/2014 9:04AM

    emoticon emoticon

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NASFKAB 10/4/2014 8:55AM

  thanks for sharing this beautiful story

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BETHGILLIGAN 10/4/2014 8:39AM

    Beautiful! Thank you.

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2BDYNAMIC 10/4/2014 8:28AM

    My heart goes out to you .......... And thank you for opening your heart. emoticon

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SANDICANE 10/4/2014 8:08AM

    Thinking of you....

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October 1st: a Right Brain/Left Brain conversation

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

I'm having a bit of a hard time these days and not just because I'm grieving my mother's death. THAT is normal. Other stuff is crashing into my life and panic mode is setting in. The brains are really upset about this so let's peek in on them and see what they have to say.

* * * * **

emoticon Oh La! October 1 already and I don't have a plan or any goals or even any clever ideas! I just ... I'm not ready! Wait wait ... oh.

emoticon But .. no. Don't wait. September was so very crummy. Move on Move on.

emoticonNo. Wait Wait. Mercury is about to go retrograde! Fix that quickbooks software first!

emoticonNo Let's get out of here! Come to me October-baby! anything is better than the past few weeks!

emoticonNo! Stop Stop. We haven't finished the newsletter

emoticonNo wait! Look out!



emoticon (shaking her head) Wh' happend?

emoticon(shaking her head too) I dunno Man - that was a smash up. Are you okay?

emoticon(checking her arms) I think so. You?

emoticon(feeling her head) Yea. Nothing feels broken

emoticon Well. Um. Sorry about that. I just realized how fast time has flown

emoticonYeah, I understand. I felt like I was about to be sucked under

emoticon (smiling) or forward.

emoticonYeah - and I am. we are. Time doesn't really stop, does it?

emoticon 'Fraid not. And I didn't mean to throw us into a tizzy ... I'm just sort of well - I mean - here it is October and we don't have a plan!

emoticonYeah yeah - don't go there again.

emoticon (chuckling) Okay - or at least - I won't shriek it at you. But I would like to know ... well, I'd like to know what we're going to be doing and .. also if there's anything you'd like that you're not getting?

emoticonBesides chocolate?

emoticon well, you're getting chocolate. But yeah. Is there anything you're not getting that leaves you wanting More Chocolate?

emoticonHmmmm. Must be - 'cause most of the time I can sort of pass on the chocolate. We like it, ya know. But we don't have to have it.

emoticon I do know that - but ... why are we still 4 pounds over our goal weight? What's the story there?

emoticon(shrugs) I dunno

emoticon well, no. I am the one who knows stuff - or at least I'm the one who puts it into words most of the time. but you do know. You know how you feel."

emoticon(hangs her head and doesn't answer)

emoticon emoticon (sits quietly)

emoticonI'm tired

emoticon Yeah. Me too.

emoticonAnd I'm sad.

emoticon Yeah. Me too

emoticonAnd I'm feeling shaky. I'm scared there are more unexpected bad things waiting to jump out at me

emoticon Not surprised. Our mama just died. It doesn't get any worse than that

emoticonWell. Yes. But ... that seems a little excessive ... indulgent, even ... I mean ... we've lost important people before

emoticon ahh. but it's MAMA. And then, other loved ones are hurting and we can't help much .... don't you think the universal soul is a little achy right now from that

emoticon(thinks er no. feels a moment) Yeah. I guess so.

emoticon ah ah ah ... I can feel you withdrawing ... and I think you're getting anxious too

emoticon(smiles) You are feeling me withdraw? You?

emoticon ha ha. Yes. I have feelings to just like you are smart enough to think our way out of this funk. But I do have an idea....

emoticon(Grins a big grin) You always do.

emoticon So - I know you want to walk the dogs and it's getting late. And I also know we have to hold each other through this tough patch. AND I know that sometimes it's better to work from a structured framework so how about if today we make us a list of Things That Scare Us and then come back tomorrow and see if we can cross them all off that list with Solutions and Answers and Choices?

emoticonYeah. That sounds like a good idea. I'm not quite yet ready to figure out why I'm so unhappy but I bet if I saw some reasons written down I might be able to identify them.

emoticon Yeah. Me too.

emoticonThen let's do it

emoticon done deal

* * * * * *

Hmmm. Well. It doesn't look like they have a solution but it does look like they have a plan to plan. That's going to have to be good enough for me. After all.... I am the sum of my brains.

emoticon



  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KANSASROSE67 10/2/2014 12:22PM

    emoticon

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TORTISE110 10/2/2014 8:02AM

    Easy does it.

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123ELAINE456 10/2/2014 4:05AM

  Hope things are going easier and getting better for you. Hope October is a Wonderful Month for you. God Blessings Always. Good Thoughts, Prayers and Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Coming Your Way. We are here for you. Take Care.

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MARYJEANSL 10/1/2014 8:36PM

  I hope your October goes well. Give yourself lots of time to grieve, and take it slowly. Blessings to you!

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WILDKAT781 10/1/2014 7:31PM

    right there with you my friend....losing a parent is not easy, I lost my Mom when I was 18 in 1988 and just lost Daddy in March of this year. It does slowly get better. I am still grieving Daddy hard, but the vast majority of the time I simply remember Mommy with fondness and wish I could talk to her but no soul rending grief. Daddy is a different story for right now but I know from experience that it gets easier Please trust me that peace does eventually come
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ALMOMMY10 10/1/2014 4:33PM

    Journaling is a good way to sort inner conflict. Your sharing does too ;-)

Each day is a fresh start to conquer our battles. Good luck to you. Love the chocolate reference...so much cheaper than theraphy and it's made from the cocoa bean,...doesn't that count towards a veggie?!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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USMAWIFE 10/1/2014 9:08AM

    Been where you are and it is normal

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WORKNPROGRESS49 10/1/2014 9:08AM

    emoticon

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KANOE10 10/1/2014 8:43AM

    I have been in the same anxiety mode for Sept with so many things to deal with. Hugs to both of you. Writing down your thoughts and then figuring out a plan is great. october will be better.

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ICECUB 10/1/2014 8:24AM

    emoticon HOPE THINGS ARE GETTING EASIER. YOUR BLOG IS emoticon

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MICKEYH 10/1/2014 8:15AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BETHGILLIGAN 10/1/2014 7:50AM

    You've had some tough times! Sounds like you will be getting back "in the groove". Take your time. Be kind to yourself!

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SANDICANE 10/1/2014 7:14AM

    Oh my goodness...wish I could be there to give you a giant hug and to walk those dogs with you!!!

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MSLZZY 10/1/2014 6:51AM

    emoticon
Wonder what happens next?

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LEANJEAN6 10/1/2014 6:45AM

    Time flies for sure!!--Good morning!-Lynda emoticon

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Grieving Through The Week With Fashion Thoughts

Sunday, September 28, 2014

So I'm sitting here thinking "There's something evil about autumn coming and my mama isn't here to enjoy it with me" and immediately my brain kicks my heart and asks "What's evil about that? For that matter - when is the last time you enjoyed an autumn with your mama?" And I can't remember. And I don't know. About the evil that is. I guess it's evil because I want my mama. I want to go visit her. I want to laugh with her. I want to tell her risque jokes and then laugh wickedly till tears stream down my cheeks. I want to bask in the utter approval she gave me. I want to feel like I am the bestest thing in the whole world - and in spite of all the loving kindness other people give me - nobody could bestow approval like mama.

Sometime over the funeral stuff my older sister commented on some memory and couched it with "... and of course I'd do anything to win mama's approval." And those words sounded so weird. Because I always felt her approval. It didn't just flow from her - it gushed. I always thought she thought we were the four most perfect human beings in the world. I also felt her disapproval when it came - and I was willing to change to get her to approve of me. It's just that .... I didn't have to change very much.

YES. I know. But it is NOT true.

Each of us is goes through life with our very own personal filter. So when you say "I like that red dress" I hear one thing and my next door neighbor hears something else and you probably mean something entirely different from both of us. So when you throw THAT in my face just know that my filter keeps it out. I hear it but I don't pick it up.

And speaking of red dresses - or any dress, for that matter, (Look! A Bird!) I guess I owe my mama a thank you for making me finally buy a black dress. I do not look good in black - I look jaundiced. So I don't ever buy black and had to borrow a black dress for Daddy's funeral and I looked like crap in it, too. In fact, Mama told me over and over again ... like, till I was sick of hearing her ... how bad I looked in it.

Getting through that funeral took two rather extensive doses of retail therapy and on the second one I found a black dress that had reflective fake jewels sewn along the neckline and what do you know? Wearing it, I didn't look like I'd just risen from the sick. Truth is, I looked pretty good in it. Those sparkly things even worked when I put on a black jacket so I wouldn't freeze in the church. Best of all - it was from Dress Barn which is an inexpensive store. I didn't have to drop a bundle on a dress I will only wear to funerals. (and no. I am not 18 feet tall like that model so the dress hits my legs at a reverent mid-knee spot)



You have to know, though, that a good black dress with reflectors on it has to have a hat and in another store (Macy's ... you can usually count on finding something there even between seasons) there was a black hat. There was a BlackHat too - that was about as glamorous as a hat can be but it was really too fashionable and attention grabbing for a funeral and honestly I'd have to line it with some other color to wear it, but OMG, it was drop dead gorgeous, with a brim that swooped over your head from shoulder to shoulder like cathedral architecture and now that I'm typing this, and now that I've thought about lining it, I maybe ought to go back and buy it since I have an occasion to wear it coming up and wow - there I could wear it without looking too greedy for attention.

Love me some run-on sentences.

But back to the hat situation - there was a black hat. And it was a modest hat. And it was intended to be worn on the top of your head, tilted over your forehead slightly in a saucy slant but, ugh. When I wore it that way you could see every bag, every wrinkle and every droop in my aged face. Of course there is a happy ending to this shopping story or I wouldn't bother to write about it at all. This particular hat could be worn on the back of the head in a very 1940's manner that made a kind of halo around my head. This was how Mama always wore hats anyway or at least - it was how she wore them when I remember her as a young pretty thing. Worn that way all the ugly shadows disappeared and the rest is shopping history. I won't wear this hat too often - but whenever I have a funeral to go to that is not in the Dead-0-Winter this puppy will come out of its box.

Here's what I mean about the halo effect. No. I do not have a picture of me in the funeral hat.



Gad, Wish I were that young again and ... you know .. I'd kinda like that hat too. And so would Mama.

Which is why I am nattering on about fashion when I'm really just puking with grief. Because Mama loved her some new clothes. It was something we shared deep within our souls. We loved the architecture of clothing. We loved the engineering of it ... how it could disguise a body flaw ... how it could cloak a body in those equilateral triangles that are the geometry of beauty.

We loved the color of fashion. We both of us were totally mystified by the Blackening of Fashion that has swamped Europe and is now blanketing even the brash colorful instincts of Americans. Mind now - even Not looking Good in black doesn't mean I am immune to it's powerful effect. How do you think the LBD ever became something that could be acronymed? Because black is a powerful color that Makes A Statement. Except - it doesn't any more because now that it's the only color anybody is wearing (just look at a street snapshot of London - my god - it's as dreary as a rain storm in a coal dust cloud) the statement is completely silenced. Black deserves to mean something. It deserves to be heard. It is just too darn bad that it's being drowned out by the lack of contrast with the rest of the rainbow.

So that's my take on the blackening of fashion.

But to get back to the fun part - Mama and I also loved shopping and I have a favorite little shop I like to drop into regularly just in case I see something new. And yes. I have entirely too many clothes and really wear only the same 20 favorite things all the time - but I LOVE to look at new clothes. And as long as Mama was around I could always just say "hmmm. Maybe I can find a little something for Mama". Only not any more. I dropped in on Friday night and the first thing that hit me was .. can't tell that little fib any more. I never get to buy Mama something new again. And I hate that. I hate it so much I'm tempted to go find me a little old fashionable lady in a nursing home and start buying her little somethings I just picked up when I was in town.

And actually - that's not such a bad idea. I think I will go by the nursing home in town and see if there is a little old lady who could use a new blouse....

Huh. You never know, do you. You never know when an idea will float to the surface if you jabber on long enough.

So. It's been a though week. But it's over now. or - almost. Tomorrow will be the "One week ago we buried Mama" day and then it starts receding. I'm sure this is not the last time I'm going to talk about all this stuff. But at least I've begun to talk at all. I've been pretty numb and frozen this week - what with Issues and Stuff that had to be dealt with. I've been wearing my armor of Normalcy. It helps. Doesn't feel very good, but it helps. Just know. I'll be back.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LORIVIOLA 10/27/2014 8:53AM

    I am sending love to you today. And a hope for a hug from your Mama in some way for you today. A smile from someone you dont know that carries her expression. So that when you walk on by, you think of your Mama. And smile. (I know and shed a tear ...or several too.)
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CONFIDENTLYFIT 10/8/2014 7:11PM

    First, I ran across your Sparkpage, and thought, there's a woman my age that and she and her friends share similar mid-life issues. YAY. Then, I read your grieving blog. I am sorry about your Mom's passing. No matter how your relationship ebbs and flows, she's still your Mama. You did make me smile, and even chuckle, with your description of the interest in fashion you shared, and disagreed on :)

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WRITERWANNAB 10/5/2014 8:46PM

    I am sorry for your loss. Losing a parent or a sibling is always hard. emoticon

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MRSRIGS1 10/3/2014 7:35PM

    emoticon I am so sorry for your loss. emoticon emoticon

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ARTJAC 10/1/2014 9:37PM

    emoticon

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CLAIREINPARIS 10/1/2014 12:19PM

    I think only you can make me smile and even laugh as I read your very sad blog; You have a wonderful way of describing things, of adding humor in the midst of sad things... Yes, it would be lovely if you could help a little old lady in a nursing home. I think more than the blouse she would be delighted to see you regularly (but she would enjoy the blouse too certainly!).
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CAROL3SAN 9/30/2014 8:29AM

    Sorry about your loss. emoticon

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BLUEJEAN99 9/30/2014 1:58AM

    emoticon

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JIBBIE49 9/30/2014 12:54AM

    Great to see your blog featured in the Spark Mail. What an honor.

My mother died from a heart attack when I was 17 and a Senior in high school. She was 58 and had been a smoker since she was 40. Five years later, my Dad got married again at age 70. Not one kid at school had any sympathy for me at all, but instead I was told "why, good grief, she was FIFTY EIGHT, so what the h#ll did you expect?" Yes, that was old to a group of teenagers.

Sorry for your loss.

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ROCKYCPA 9/29/2014 10:29PM

    So sorry for your loss but what wonderful memories!

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LINDAK25 9/29/2014 8:04PM

    Oh, sweetie, I'm so sorry for your loss. You made me think of when my Grandma passed away. I loved shopping with and for her. I can't tell you how long it was before I was able to go shopping without finding just the perfect little thing for her. Worse, it always made me so weepy. I know you never get over a loss this big, you just move forward because you have no choice.

Glad you found just the right dress. Your Mama would be proud.

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CHRISTIECAT 9/29/2014 7:42PM

    Beautiful memories and I thought it was a well written and touching obit in the Rapp Times last week - we are praying for you! Take care and day by day!

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NONNAOF2 9/29/2014 5:23PM

  I'm so sorry for your loss, the memories of your mother will always be with you, as they as they are with me with my mother, who passed away many years ago. I like to think of the times that we shared and how the memories bring joyful thoughts to my mind and a smile on my face all these years later. I'm sending a big hug to you, it will get better, I promise you.

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ALEXSGIRL1 9/29/2014 5:23PM

    so sorry for the loss of your mom

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JUSGETTENBY42 9/29/2014 4:53PM

    emoticon

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SHERYLP461 9/29/2014 4:40PM

    So sorry for your loss, my thoughts turn to my mother in the fall too, she loved to travel to NC to see the leaves change. I will always miss her.

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JSEATTLE 9/29/2014 4:03PM

  I am so sorry for the loss of you dear Mother. Mom (85) and I went to our neighbor's memorial service this weekend and boy was it tough. We laughed and cried, a wonderful woman who left us too soon. How wonderful that you can share your feelings with us. Thank you.

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MAMAOWLS 9/29/2014 3:37PM

    So sorry for your loss. I lost my mom almost thirteen years ago and I still miss her. I don't have the pain of the loss now like I did at first. It will get easier.

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IAMAGEMLOVER 9/29/2014 11:31AM

    I'm sorry for your loss. The memories will comfort you, time does heal, but you will always have a hole in your heart. My Dad has been gone since 12/28/93 and a day never goes by that I don't miss him.

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NEPTUNE1939 9/29/2014 11:24AM

    emoticon

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PATRICIAANN46 9/29/2014 10:40AM

  I am so emoticon for the loss of your Mother. You are correct..........time does help a lot...........and all of the memories you have will also comfort you. Take care.
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BOB5148 9/29/2014 10:31AM

  sorry for your loss

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STEVIEBEE569 9/29/2014 8:53AM

    Sorry for your loss

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IDICEM 9/29/2014 8:52AM

  Your memories will keep her with you always. Hugs.

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TIMEHASCOME56 9/29/2014 8:32AM

    sorry for your loss emoticon

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SIZE8NOTSOMUCH 9/29/2014 8:19AM

    It is a long tough road. Some days the road is straight, other days nothing but curves. My Mom's been gone 20 years, and I still miss her. You always do.

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SUEARNOLD1 9/29/2014 8:17AM

    emoticon for the loss of your Mom.

It's hard, I know.

Thanks for sharing some very sweet memories.

I think your idea of finding a lady in a nursing home is very touching. Your Mom would like that, I'll be t she's smiling right now!

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SHOAPIE 9/29/2014 7:58AM

    emoticon

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SUNSHINEGB 9/29/2014 7:57AM

    I am so sorry for your loss. I'm glad you're blogging about your feelings.
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PIXIE-LICIOUS 9/29/2014 7:14AM

    emoticon emoticon I'm sorry for your loss. You're in my prayers.

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PENOWOK 9/29/2014 6:56AM

    I am so sorry for your loss. I remember the feelings when my mom died. It's been 13 years. It's hard. I still have tears when I talk to people about her. I still have a few things that belonged to her-earrings and a sweater. My younger sister wrapped a sweater in a plastic bag and refuses to wash it. I had a friend who made teddy bears from the clothing of a loved one. I sure love that you are looking for someone else who might need the love you still have for your mama! You are a sweet daughter. God bless you!! I am praying the Holy Spirit will bring you comfort.

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ONEKIDSMOM 9/29/2014 6:40AM

    emoticon Mother-daughter relationships are complex, and whatever they were for each individual pair, it's hard to say goodbye. Condolences on your loss, and writing this has to be a help in working through it. Thank you for sharing it with us.

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CHERYLHURT 9/29/2014 6:31AM

  I'm caregiver to my Mum and she is loads of work...but I love, love, love heer and am so grateful God is allowing me to be her caregiver. I will be the only one of three kids who will have no regrets. Bless you!

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MSLZZY 9/29/2014 6:31AM

    Sorry for your loss. My mother seldom bought new clothes except at rummage sales. She just didn't feel the need to spend much money but that is another story. I have a few black items that I dress up with color as black is just not friendly with my skin tone. But a black dress can look beautiful. Love the hat but I gave up on hats years ago. They always look goofy on me.

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SANDICANE 9/29/2014 6:31AM

    Oh, the "can't do that anymores...." Yep, those are certainly hold feelings of sadness, and emptyness. Wish we could see you in your black dress...it's lovely.

And, if there is a little old lady out there who does not have a daughter available to bestow loving gifts upon her, you could certainly make a wonderful difference in her life.

Sharing your sorrow.

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TRYINGHARD54 9/29/2014 4:47AM

    I'm sorry to hear about your mother. You have great memories. :-)

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REGILIEH 9/29/2014 2:30AM

    So sorry about your mother, it is horrible! I still miss her and I still talk to her and I still want to please her. It took me years before I could look at Mother's Day cards without crying.

Take care of yourself.

Hugs!

Anne

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JCMSMILE 9/29/2014 2:05AM

    Talk as much as you need to talk..that's what we are here for!! Know always that you are loved and supported emoticon

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KANSASROSE67 9/28/2014 10:13PM

    My mom was 100% in my corner, always, and not shy about letting me know she was proud of me. I still miss that.

This drowning time of grief will lessen, as you know, but you will always have that hole in your life that only your mama could fill. I am thinking of you.

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SLIMMERJESSE 9/28/2014 9:05PM

    You are so lucky to have had such a wonderful relationship with your mother. Mine was just the opposite.

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STRONGERLEANER 9/28/2014 7:43PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

You are so right. Our experiences and perspectives are so different from the experiences and perspectives of others! Because of it, I'm concerned more often than I'd like of saying the wrong thing.

Know that I am praying for you and that I wish I had some wonderful words to help ease the pain and help with the grief. All I can say is that from you posts it seems as if you are well-loved. I believe that those who love you will be willing to help you in any way they can because not only do they love you and they know your mother was so very special to you.

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JACKIEWALKS4FUN 9/28/2014 6:41PM

    emoticon

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123ELAINE456 9/28/2014 5:05PM

  I'm so sorry to hear about the loss of your Mother. I love your memories and your thoughts. A Beautiful Blog. May God be With You and give you the comfort you need to get through this. God Blessings Always. May You have a very Blessed Week. Good Thoughts, Prayers and Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!Coming Your Way. Take Care

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MICKEYH 9/28/2014 1:20PM

    RIP Mama. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 9/28/2014 11:22AM

    My sincere condolences on the loss of your beloved mother.

And: I can't help but think how she would have enjoyed being remembered in this way.

My mother was pretty fashionable herself for a long time and no question I do love clothes myself!

Love the idea of you finding a little lady maybe in a nursing home who doesn't have anyone to shop for her!

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ICECUB 9/28/2014 11:15AM

    I AM SO SORRY YOU LOSS YOUR MAMA. I DO KNOW HOW YOU FEEL. I MISS MINE EVERYDAY. I DO HAVE VERY GOOD MEMORIES. BUT IT IS STILL HARD. MAY GOD KEEP YOU AND SURROUND YOU IN HIS PEACE, LOVE, AND COMFORT. emoticon

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2BDYNAMIC 9/28/2014 11:07AM

    My heart goes out to you ............ I do relate to losing your Mother. emoticon

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NASFKAB 9/28/2014 11:06AM

  thanks for sharing your feelings hugs

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NASFKAB 9/28/2014 10:49AM

  thanks for sharing your feelings

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GARDENCHRIS 9/28/2014 10:44AM

    so sorry for the loss of your Mom..... I feel the same about my grandmother and she has been gone a long time....... but.. the pain gets less and less and you remember the good times fondly. take care.

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