Friday, November 23, 2012
I hate to sound like a' spoil sport', but is THIS what it's really about?
Is they anything that any of us need so badly that it can't be purchased on any of the other 364 days of the year?
How do you feel about this?
Monday, October 17, 2011
"When are you going to start acting your age?"
That was a question my sister asked me a few months ago when I told her that I had just gotten my 10 speed touring bicycle tuned up so I could start riding again.
"You have a birthday coming up in a few months." she reminded me.
"I know." I said.
"And how old will you be?"
"I don't know," I replied, "I've forgotten."
"YOU DON'T KNOW HOW OLD YOU WILL BE?"
"Well, I suppose I could figure it out....anyway, it's just a number...."
"Well, let me remind you......you will be 63...."
"Thanks," I told her, " I'll make a note of that."
"And you're going out riding your bicycle?"
"Every chance I get...."
That's when she asked that dreaded question.......when are you going to start acting your age?
That really upset me. And when I get upset, I like to ride my bike. In fact it upset me so much that I bought a recumbent exercise bike for the house, (so I can ride at night and on rainy days, and in the Arizona summers)
Last week I bought a one-speed cruiser bicycle for "fun" (I love bicycles).
But what I really, really want is a pair of rollerskates.
Would that be having too much fun?
I mean, if I did buy the skates, can anybody tell me how old would I be then?
Monday, February 14, 2011
Death is not something we want to talk about, but it happens. I wouldn't have brought up the subject except that with my Mother Emma passing away on February 5, death seems to be on my mind.
And maybe not for a bad reason. It gives me the chance to sort through feelings, emotions, and photographs.
I came across a photo a few days ago of Mom and her beloved dog Jiggs. She acquired Jiggs when I was still in high school. Jiggs was no small animal; he was a very large German Shepherd that someone had left on the side of the road. He and my Mother became fast friends, and he was the love of her life. When she went anywhere in the car, Jiggs had to come along...and sat in the front seat. If there were others along for the ride, they sat in the back!
When Jiggs died, my Mother called me from work to have me come home. I had never seen such sadness in my Mother, and such grief that I don't remember her having when 'her' Mother died. For years afterward, Mom would call or write on the anniversary of Jiggs' death, "It's been five years since........ten years....twenty....." She never forgot the day. Other things she forgot over the years, but not this.
I grew up with pets: dogs when I lived at home, and later....all kinds of animals. Grieving for a lost pet was never easy. And I learned (from them) to give them permission to die. If we are having a hard time accepting death, what can our pets be feeling? And the society in which we live doesn't exactly accept grieving as a reason to stay home from work. "Bury your loved ones on Sunday; back to work on Monday." Back to work as if we hadn't done anything more then a quick trip to the mall.
But we need time to grieve. Maybe a week; maybe a year; maybe longer. My Dad passed away in 1993, and I can't tell you how many years I still bought Father's Day cards, and birthday cards, and then remembered..... I knew a lady whose 25 year old horse died, and she was out of work for a month. Or my friend who spent two weeks in the hospital after the death of her dog. There are hundreds of stories, and you probably know many of them yourselves. Because grief is real, it needs to be recognized, and it shows up in different forms.
I never have gotten over the death of my beagle Hoover. And while I don't call my Daughter every year on the anniversary (as my Mother did with Jiggs), I will never forget the day: July 15 at 12:01 pm. At that moment time stood still for me.
For months I could not comprehend the idea that the date changed every day, or the reason the minutes were ticking by on the clock; it was a complete mystery to me. And, in fact, I received more sympathy cards when Hoover died (even one from my Mother) then I did when my Grandson Andrew died.
I'm not saying that animals are more important then people. You just don't know at what level you will touch another person.
We all grieve, and it is real, and necessary. It doesn't matter if it is for Uncle Bill or Aunt Mary, or our pet Jackson, or Sara Lynn, or Bitie...it's all real. We need to be there for one another, and keep the lines of communication open because I don't believe death is the end; it is just another step.
Freddy was a big yellow tom cat that I had since he was a kitten; a present from my Daughter. I had Freddy a long time, and at the end of his life, he was my only pet. And since I lived alone, he was everything to me. Not unlike Mom and Jiggs.
Freddy had a red catnip mouse that he loved to play with. The poor mouse, I almost felt sorry for it--frayed tail, ears nibbled off, one eye hanging--but Freddy loved this mouse, and carried it around proudly, like a trophy. He even slept with the mouse like a child would with a teddy bear, something I have never seen in the animal world.
After Freddy died, and I returned to an empty apartment, the loneliness and grief was unbearable. I found Freddy's mouse on the living room floor near my recliner. I didn't have the heart to move it. It was like a shrine to Freddy's memory, and to touch it or move it would be a sacrilege.
A few days later, I came home from work to something really astounding: there was an indentation in the bedspread on my bed. The indentation was about the size of a small animal that may have been resting there, and beside the indentation was the red mouse.
Sunday, February 06, 2011
Sunday, February 6.....received a call at 6am from my sister: Mom passed away last evening.
We knew it was coming, but how do you feel when your parent dies?
My first response to my sister was: Well, Emma finally got her wish.
And maybe I was a little relieved that some of the pressure is off my sister since she has been taking care of Mom all these years.
And a little angry at Mom for being selfish because she has wanted to die for a long time. and never even considered the void it would leave in so many lives.
And all the things left unsaid.
I suppose I could go on and on....
But the most important thing is that I told her that I loved her the last time we spoke, and she is at peace now.
Yet, sadly, there's a little grin that passes my lips when I think that Emma got her wish.
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