Friday, October 24, 2014

Missing You Mom

Dear Mom,
Seven years ago today I became an Orphan.  It was not something I had ever given much  thought to. But the morning after you died, I awoke and my first thought was, this is the first day of my life without a Mother. I was taken aback by the thought and the feeling that accompanied it.  You were really gone.  And for the first time I really understood how paramount you had been in my life.  And now seven years later I know it even more.

I hope you hear me when I talk to you.  I hope you see me and all the things I've been through and done since you left.  I believe you do.  I think you are right here with me, next to me but still able to do all the things a Soul does in the magic of Eternity.  How could you be anywhere but with me your child? Thats what Mother's do.

I know I was always head strong and stubborn.  I believe that added to my inability to see things as they were.  I was so focused on wanting you to be the Mother I wanted, that I failed to realize that you were the Mother that I needed.  You were not demonstrative.  You often vocalized how you wished you could be.  But no one had ever taught you how and the discomfort of kisses and I love yous never really left you. Instead you "did".  You got up at 5 and sent Dad off to work.  Then you fixed your fussy eater (me) food I liked for lunch.  I would go on kicks for 3-4 months at a time.  Egg Salad, chicken sandwiches....that entailed boiling eggs and shelling them.  Cooking inexpensive pieces of chicken and picking the meat off the bones.  And always there were fresh baked goods.  You ironed my uniforms and then fought with me to get out of bed.  Off I'd go with nary a thank you.  Finally you'd have forty five minutes to yourself before you went to work at the Bank.Then home at 5:30 to cook and clean and get ready for the same routine tomorrow.  You didn't complain.  You didn't coddle.  You were strict.  If you said it, it happened. I thought you were so mean.

Then I grew up, married, had a family of my own.  Still I could not see you for the woman you were. I thought my problems were original.  You and I still had our difficulties. My blinders where on even as you reached out for me to catch me as I fell out of my marriage.  I took so much for granted.  Wasn't that what a Mother was for.

Years passed.  You had some health issues.  I nursed you back to health.  I tended you.  I still could not see you as a person in her own right.  You were my Mother.

Another decade passed and now you were in need.  It was the two of us.  Finally the barriers were down.  For the first time I really honored you, just like the commandment said.  I helped you through the difficult act of dying.  It was not me alone.  It was Jack and Pat, and Ann, David, Lara, Mary, Renee, Trish and many many others.  But we had a lot of moments alone.  It wasn't until you were no longer awake that I could begin to say all the things that had gone unsaid. To thank you for all the things I had failed to see, appreciate or realize.  And now seven years later, I am still recalling. I see you often in myself.  Sometimes it scares me.
I never thought I'd say it, but honestly Mom, I'm proud to be like you.  I love you.

Until next time.....Always,

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Shredding Memories.....

Today was a cool cloudy Tuesday.  The kind of Summer day that makes me feel more inclined to take on jobs I usually defer.  Today's chore was cleaning out file cabinets and shredding.  

When we moved almost four years ago, I hired a shredding company to come out after burning out two shredders.  Understand that Tom was a man born  almost a generation before me.  He was raised on paper.  Every kind you can think of.  He was a business owner and his business was Insurance.  You can imagine the paper that field of work can generate.  He came to know and be comfortable using computers.  He did all his banking online.  Bill Pay was his savior!  Bill Pay saved him 6 hours of careful record keeping and hand writing checks once a month.  Always on the 20th.  Not a day before and not a day later.  But no matter how hard I tried I could not convince him that he did not need to keep a paper (hard) copy of everything he did.  Thus the files soon began to refill after the day we had the shredding company out.  There were also records/papers he just refused to part with.  Like every single Mortgage he ever had.  For every single house he had ever lived in.  They were numerous.  Every Bank statement for years and years resided in file drawers and boxes.  Every lab test going back 25 years.  Every Explanation of Benefits from BC/BS.  Are you getting the picture?  

Today came and I didn't have to be anywhere.  I decided to start on this formidable task.  I stayed at it for seven hours.  I accumulated 5 garbage bags of shredded documents and old 
records of who knows what.  What I could recycle I recycled.  But in the flurry of the papers and the whirl of the shredder there were Memories.  A sticky note with a jotted message.  A note saying he had gone to the store.  Our signatures together on a Mortgage application.  Applications that I had filled out for him when writing became more difficult for him. Now those papers slowed me down and I must admit I took my time remembering.  It was good.  When I remembered enough I slipped those papers into the jaws of the shredder.  Never to see them again,  but to know that all those moments are in my heart as years lived well.  The other papers went in much faster because they had nothing to do with me and had no hold.  I now know exactly where all the old Tax Records are.  I have enough room in my desk file that I can easily slide my hand in to slip in a necessary paper.  I have more room in the closet, but my heart is more full.  

Until Next Time.....Always,

Oh an added bonus.  A handwritten card from my Mother.  A thank you note following the 90th Birthday Party we gave for her.  Filled with soft and tender words that she found impossible to utter, but she could express in writing.  That is safely locked in my fire proof safe.  Gems among the rubble.  

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Since the day this picture was taken in 1985, this has been my life. Tom and Kathy. 
Now, 27 years later I have come to fully realize that it no longer is. Now some of you may be thinking "we'll of course not." Tom has been gone from this world for 19 months. Believe me, if anyone has been counting it's been me.

The Grief Process is an interesting thing. Proc-ess 1/pra-ses;noun: 1.a series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end: a natural or involuntary series of changes.  That sums it up pretty well. I've been going through this process. While my mind has fully known of Tom's absence my heart and spirit has been lagging behind. 

At first there is the shock of it all, especially when it's an accident. Then there is all the "business" matters that have to be tended to. Then there's that first year EVERYONE warns you about. "Don't make any big decisions." "Don't make any drastic changes." Maybe you heed the advice, maybe you don't. I'm a heeder. It has something to do with my upbringing.
I'm not saying that is a bad thing, I'm just saying it's what I did, by choice. 

Then there's this heart thing. Wanting to feel his presence. Lying in bed spooned against a King size pillow pretending to have my arm around him. Or pressing my back up against that same pillow and believing I can feel his warmth. Remembering that this was how we fell asleep together every night. Sitting on my balcony or on a beach or even driving on the highway and gazing at a sunset. Talking aloud to him about it and now believing that he is in it. That he comes every evening just to say goodnight to me. All of these things bring me comfort and make me feel that I'm really not alone.

For 19+ months this has been my routine. It has varied little. I've carried on. 

But, since my arrival in Naples I have been sensing unrest. Something is different. Something suddenly doesn't feel "right".  It's taken me a month to figure it out. This is what I think it might be, I REALIZE I've been living "our" life. I've been submerged in this thing called the "Grief Process".  I think I'm ready to start living "my life" now. I think I've healed enough to now just be feeling a little bit sore. I think I need to make some new choices about what my life will be.

I've pretty much decided that this will likely be my last winter in Florida.  I will stay North in the cold and grey and work at making sunrises in my life. I will invest in friends and family and make commitments to activities that up until today I was unable to do. I'm sure I'll find places to visit that are warm and have beaches if only to make the winter more tolerable. But I can't begin "my life"  when I'm gone for so long.  

"Our life" is over. It was a wonderful life and I'm grateful for every moment we had. 

I am ready to embrace "my life". But I'll tell you a secret, I will never be able to look at a sunset without KNOWING that it really is my Tom coming to say goodnight!☀☀☀☀

Until next time....Always, Kathleen

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


                                                           Grandma Grace Barber 1920s
                                                        Kathleen and Grandma Grace 1956

Kathleen 1946

Grandmothers are remarkabke human beings.  They embody Spirits that are able to demonstrate 
unconditional love.   God made Grandmothers because in his Infinite Wisdom He knew that children needed someonoe on this Earth to love them in this way.  I had the most wonderful Grandmother.  I adored her and chose to spend as much time with her as I could.  She was often preferred over my Mother and Father.  Now you might think that had something to do with her spoiling me, but that was not the case.  She never had to ask me to do anythng more than once.  The love I felt in her presence was enough for me.  With her I felt whole, unflawed, perfect.  She nurtured me physically and mentally.  Her every wish was my command because in turn my every wish was her command.  We operated on a mutual admiration level, I could not imagine my life without her in it.  She was instrumental in building the foundation I have used to form the life I have today.  When she died in 
1956 just months after this picture was taken, the lights went out in my heart for a long, long time.  Even as a ten year old I wondered if I would ever be the same again.  But time passed and my heart healed bit by bit.  She was my first experience of loss.  She died in my bedroom on my Dad's Birthday.  I was never afraid in my room.  If anything I took solace in the fact that she had chosen that place to leave me.  I prayed for her, but mostly I prayed to her.  To this day I carry her Holy Card in my Meditation Book and thank her every morning for having been such a powerful influence in my life.  Her dying taught me not to be afraid of death.  I learned early on that death is part of life.
Most improtantly I learned that those we have loved never really leave us.  Instead they are indelibly stamped on the fabric of our being.  What they brought to us is a part of us.  

And now here it is sixty years later, and now I get to be one of those remarkable human beings....a
Grandmother.  I now understand the magic that my Grandma felt.  I felt it the moment I laid eyes on Evelyn four years ago.  Everytime I held her as a baby I whispered to her about all of her perfection and what she would someday accomplish.  I've prayed with her and played with her.  I've danced with her and imagined with her, all the while hoping that she is loving me much as I loved my Grandma.
I am working at making memories with her so that someday she will think of me and know that we shared an incredible time together.  When she is an adult I hope she will thank me for helping her to build a foundation that is solid and strong that she will continue to add to as the years pass. But I really hope she remembers the fun, the silliness and the laughter!

Until nest time....As alwaays, Kathleen 

Sunday, August 12, 2012


The summer is flying by. Actually I find this to be true of my life in general. There was something about loosing Tom that seemed to bring the events of simple everyday things into a much clearer and sharper focus. Instead of wishing time to pass I find myself immersed in the simple moments with a whole new appreciation. I no longer just say " I'm exactly where I am supposed to be", instead I KNOW that I am. I am aware of the gift of friendship. I value those currently in my life and I cherish the memories of those from my past. Do you realize the impact you have on each and every person you meet? Even the briefest encounter has a purpose. Your energy touching someone else's. Protons and neutrons bumping together and mixing, merging, and then as you separate some of you is left behind and some of them attaches to you and follows you into your day...your life. Have you ever thought about it like that? I do now.

August 12th
I've just spent twelve days at the cottage. It's been a great week. For the majority of the time I've been alone, but really when I'm here there is so much of my Tom here. This is the place we built so much of our relationship in. I'm not lonely when I'm here. The cottage is a gift he left me. I'm so grateful to
have this respite to come to. I feel restored after being here. Somehow these rooms, this space allows me to simply be.  Being is something I used to have a hard time doing ,  because DOING is what I always did best.

After twelve days I'm ready to go home. I know I can drive over here whenever I need to or whenever I want to.  But for now I'm restored, and just in time, Evelyn arrives on Thursday. I think she'll be bringing some of those protons and neutrons I was taking about and man, her's are full of energy and it's all positive!

Until next time....Always, Kathleen

Late Notes on Florida

                                                            Grandma and Evelyn Racing


                                                           Goodnight Grandpa


Now I know this is a late entry, but I wanted you to see some of the fun I had
When the Rices came to Naples.  As you can plainly see "my Evelyn" is no longer
a baby. She has mysteriously turned into a little girl. It's an example of that blink
of an eye that everyone talks about.

As soon as I retired, Tom immediately decided we'd start spending our winters
in Naples. I wasn't sure about it at all. Months away from my family and friends?
Off we went, starting yet another chapter in our lives. What did I find?  Well, a
beautiful city that I fell in love with, and friends.

More than anything Naples provided us with a place where Tom could stay active
in the winter months. It was safe. It was a haven as well, giving us distance from
a problem family member. But the best was having a place to share with friends and
family. Evelyn has had the oppurtunity to experience swimming, beaches and spend
quality time with both Tom and I. Tom loved having her with us. It wasn't long
enough, but it was, and thats what matters .

This is not my typical Blog. It's actually a test of sorts. It's my first iPad Blog.
If it really works, I hope to be back to blogging on a more regular basis.

Until next time.....Always, Kathleen

Saturday, May 26, 2012


 It seems like forever since I've written.  Interestingly enough I'm at the cottage.  The place that last prompted an entry.  Eight months have passed and truly I had nothing to say. 

One thing I know is true.  Each person's journey through grief is different.  Don't late anyone fool you that there is a definite pattern.  Places you will visit in your darkest moments.  There is no map.  There is no right way and no wrong way.  This I know. 

Tom's death was sudden, unexpected, in the wrong place(or so it seemed).  I felt little, I couldn't figure it out.  How could the end of a relationship that lasted for 26 years, feel like nothing?  How could the love of my life, leaving so quickly,  not feel like I had lost an arm or some other part of ME?  But there I was going on.  And on and on.  Seldom any tears.  Then just a welling up that never went anywhere. 
 And then on Thursday evening I returned to the cottage.  The first time this year.  While watching TV at night I looked up and saw a collage I made last year.  It is full of Tom, Tom and I, Tom and Grandkids but most of all full of so many wonderful memories.  And suddenly I remembered that we had had so many wonderful years.  Twenty-three with good health.  The last three had a lot of deterioration and many physical limitations.  Today on the thirteenth month anniversary of his death I had a revlation.  I realized that for the past year I was healing myself.  I had turned off so much of my feelings the previous three years that I was on idle.  I had to be there for Tom mentally and physically.  He could not see me crumble, while he dealt with the awful losses that Parkinson's was leaving him with.  So I turned of my "feel button" and I fine tuned my "care/give button."  Some days that button needed more fine tuning that I could master, but on most days it was working.  And then he fell and it was over in a matter of hours.  For the life of me I could not find my "feel" button.  So I spent the past year with my "care/give" button still on but redirected towards me.  I began eating better.  I exercise 4-5 days a week.  I sleep 8-9 hours a night.  I lost 15 pounds. I've done everything I've wanted to when I've wanted to. I've said no when I needed to.  Now that phase has been completed.  Today I found my "feel" button.  I turned it to ON.

Today I spoke with three women who are close to me.  They are women who know and understand me and knew Tom and I together.  I was able to share this new insight.  And in the simple telling the tears came.  The first time a little haltingly.  The second a little more quickly.  The third a full fledged "cry".  A gift.  Tears to heal the empty part that has now become appearant.  A part I could not feel, or see, or even imagine this past year.  All I needed to do was find that damn button. 

Until next time.....Always, Kathleen
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Monday, September 5, 2011




Wild Flowers along the Marsh

The Marsh

This is the first time I've done this.  I've come to the cottage alone.  I've been here for 10 days and I'm okay!
Wasn't sure what this would be like.  The cottage is a place that was special to Tom and I.  We built a great deal of our relationship in this house.  He loved it more than me.  He could have made this home.  For me it was just a little too isolated.  Not sure I could have lived here all summer long.  But I will say this, it is surely a place to restore oneself. 

The cottage is on Lake Erie's south shore.  When I come here I'm actually going south.  It is under 40 miles from home.  If I come at the right time of the day, I can be here in an hour.  The border crossing is always the unknown.  Some days it is a smooth sail all the way, others it can take more than an hour and a half.  But now being retired I can choose to come at the times that are not usually busy. 

I have always loved being here in late August or September.  I love the way the sun sits in the sky.  It shines on the water until it looks like there are thousands of diamonds scattered on the surface. The air is warm with the sun but not so it's too hot to sit directly in it's light.  The clouds are huge and puffy and the colors vary as the sun moves across the horizon.  And on weekend nights my neighbor Mary Beth who lives two cottages over, plays the bagpipes at sunset.  She always ends with Amazing Grace.  The Chief of a Scottish Clan used to call for piper to play after supper.  Today many civilian pipers play due to nostalgia for that custom. 

I had great plans for what I would do while I was here.  Once here, I discarded the plan and let each day lead were it may. I have done some things in the house that I didn't plan on.  I did not use my usual list.  There was no crossing things off as I went.  I can say that I tilled my soil, and my soul.  I have slept like a baby (once the monster spider was killed). I've risen when I felt like it.  I've written in my journal about  feelings and facts.  I've prayed and meditated every morning. I think I have eaten less.  I have eaten healthier.  I've had little phone contact.  A good deal of Facebook contact.  Dinner out with an old friend.  Dinner with neighbors twice.  The rest of the time I've been with me.  I am learning as time goes by that I don't mind being alone.  There are times when I go to tell Tom something and he's not here, at least not physically.  Believe me though his spirit is in this place in every room.  

I am so grateful that he has left me this place to be.  I'm grateful that the sunsets continue to come.

Until next time.......Always, Kathleen

Sunday, August 21, 2011


It's time now. My busy summer is winding down. No where else to be, no one else to visit. Nothing filling my calender. I have come to a pause. I am at rest. I am alone with my thoughts....

And who should appear? My Tom. He has come in so many ways this past week. Sometimes it is a scent, sometimes it is a song, sometimes it is paper, and of course there are always the sunsets. He comes to me whole. There is no Parkinson's Disease. There are no shoulders refusing to work, to lift, to reach. He is just Tom, as I choose to remember him. I've been able to call him up at a moments notice. I have been able to feel his hand on mine. I have been able to cry. That is the biggest thing. I feared I never would. But this week the tears have come, though sparingly, but enough to bring me relief.

The cottage awaits my next visit. This second picture is of our Marsh. It's filled with aquatic wildlife. Frogs, turtles, Canadian geese, and a family of swans who think they own the whole place. Our cottage was the place we went to "be". It was the place we visited when our relationship was so new and fragile. We nourished it there and tended it in recent years. I feel so lucky to still be able to go there for refuge and respite. There is something about it that allows me to fully relax. I feel no pressure to do housework, or tend to much at all. And Tom is there in so many places.

I have so many wonderful memories of you my love. You brought out the best in me. You taught me how to trust again. You taught me how to be organized. You taught me how to let go. You taught me how to love. But most importantly, you taught me how to feel loved. You loved me so well!
Thank you for that. Come to me every day if you can. Let me feel that all over again.

Until next time.....Always, Kathleen
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Friday, July 22, 2011

Happy Birthday Dear Tom

My Dearest Tom,

Happy Birthday! This is the first one we've spent apart in twenty-six years. I can't imagine not having you here to celebrate. Birthdays, your favorite thing. It was always so important to you to celebrate on THE day. Not just your birthday, but every one's in the family.

Remember all the Mystery Trips we used to take for our Birthdays? Each of us trying to outdo the other. Taking such pleasure in surprising each other. Planning for months in advance. You driving blindly as I directed you on which highway to take and where to turn. I packed picnic lunches surprising you each time with my creativity. You loved how I fussed over you and made your day so special.

Remember this birthday? You shared it with Evelyn. It was her 1st and your 77th! You didn't mind sharing with her at all, and by the looks of it, she didn't mind sharing with you either, although the hat fit her much better. This was a birthday that brought our families together to celebrate. We had everyone there. As I recall you had a couple of different kinds of cupcakes that day.

Today will be a little different. I will come to be with you. I will remember your day. It will be THE day. I'll bring you a surprise because that's what we do. I will miss you some more. I will thank
God for sending you to me. I will thank God for taking you so gently. I will ask God to show you a Mystery on this your day. I love you Tom and I wish you were here.

Until next time.....Always, Kathleen

Sunday, June 26, 2011


Time is passing so quickly still. Today it is two months since my Tom left. There is so much I miss about him. There is so much I still can't feel. There is still so much I don't understand about this thing called grieving.

Grieving requires the present moment, quiet, smells, sounds, phrases, memories, stillness and bravery. I can feel grief begin to take residence in my soul. It sits down and starts to spread itself about. It begins in a corner and then kind of works itself along my walls. So far I haven't been brave enough to let it get too comfortable. When it starts to feel too heavy I quickly busy myself with some task or involve myself with some person. There is still to much to do to let this thing take hold. I admit I am afraid of it. I know I can not run from it forever. I just need a little more time to complete the list of things I have to do. Thank you notes, meetings with lawyers, tracking down necessary documents, figuring out what I should be looking for for Tom's Business Tax Return. There isn't time for this just yet.

I am afraid of being immobilized. Me, the energizer Bunny. What will I do? What if grief won't move out? What if it stays as my companion? Every time I have to remove his name from an account, or call to cancel a charge or notify yet one more business of Tom's death, I feel like I am erasing him bit by bit. I do not want my memories to be erased too. I want to always be able to see his smile. I want to remember the feel of his hand on mine. I want to be able to smell his scent. Time has a way of erasing these memories as well.

The photos at left capture what we had. These were taken in Gwinn, MI on the day Evelyn
was baptized. We posed for the first shot but the second was captured as we laughed in our familiar way. The last one is just a peck, a reminder of the bond that held us.

These are the things I miss the most. The years of togetherness and the sharing of our lives. How lucky we were.

Until next time.....Always, Kathleen
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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Three Little Words

Did I tell you the last words Tom said to me where, "I love you". How many people get the chance to say their goodbyes the way we did. I'm not certain we really understood that it was our final goodbye, but nonetheless it was.

These are some photos of sunsets he's been sending me. It can be the bleakest of days and then at about 8:30 p.m. I go to the balcony and there he is. Shining all this beauty at me, calling hello to me, whispering "I love you."

The morning I flew back from Florida to Michigan, the kids and I stopped for brunch. On the wall above our table was the photo you see below. An artist snapped a photo using scrabble letters. I looked up, saw it, and could hear Tom. I said, "I want to buy that," but it was already sold. My daughter-in-law Becka contacted the artist and she and David bought it and gave it to me for my 65th birthday . It was a month later and I'd forgotten all about it. What a great surprise! It had therapeutic powers as well. It induced some much needed crying that I have difficulty generating myself. So now, everyday I get to see those words I heard.

I'm still having trouble sleeping. I awake two to three times a night. This morning I tossed for an hour and then fell back to sleep. I had the best dream about Tom. At the end, we were sitting in one of his older cars, he was dressed in a suit and his Burberry raincoat, I was dressed up. He put his arm around me, pulled me to him and kissed me just the way he used to. He was healthy, no Parkinson's, he was "my Tom". I woke up and felt so happy that he had been so near, that it had felt so real. It gave me that old feeling I used to have with him before Parkinson's.....that feeling of safety, of being cared for. It felt
like he was telling me that yes indeed, all is well.

Until next time........Always, Kathleen
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Friday, June 3, 2011

Tip of the Iceberg

There are no pictures to describe where I am right now. I don't think I even have words to describe this place. The tip of the iceberg says it the best I think.

I am in Chicago with my best friend Kathy McDonald. Her Mother Nell died peacefully yesterday just short of her 104th birthday. I am so glad I could be with her for this time. We came on Tuesday knowing Nell was declining. We decided on Wednesday night to extend our stay. We knew if we didn't we would just be turning around and coming back soon.

We have all been wondering for a long time what Nell's purpose for still being here could possibly be. But one by one different people who have been in her life shared their thoughts. Then yesterday morning standing at her bedside I felt her gift to me. Tears for Tom. Almost the first one's I've been able to shed since that first week he died. Now they weren't profuse(as mine never are), but nonetheless they were there and they were real.

Late this afternoon I began feeling a heaviness in my heart. That feeling of anxiety that frequents me when I am hurting or afraid. Today's feeling are from hurting. Tears still won't come but I'm beginning to feel the sadness I've expected all along. It sat down right on my lap and I knew I just needed to be by myself. Kathy sensed my need, and she may have it herself, so she is off for a drive and I'm in our room. I am trying to feel a little more so I can cry a little more. I feel raw. I am missing that comfortable space Tom and I shared. I miss my Tom.

This is the tip of the iceberg. I want to keep my eyes open, my senses sharpened so I don't miss what's underneath that tip. I want to go around it and absorb it, but please God, don't let me crash into it. Tom, you help me navigate this course, just like you did on the road. I love you.

Until next always, Kathleen

Sunday, May 29, 2011


Here it is my 65th Birthday and no Tom to celebrate it with me:( Tom always made my Birthday so special. He insisted on celebrating birthdays on the actual date. That was never an important thing to me. Just so people I loved remembered me and acknowledged me I didn't care when it happened. But not my hubby. Always it was on the 29th. It wasn't just my birthday he was so fussy about, it was everyone.

When we first met I started a tradition. I planned a "Mystery Trip" for him. His birthday was July 22nd and we would take three to four day excursions. He never knew where we were going. We'd get in the car and I'd give him directions. He loved doing those trips. He loved being fussed over and pampered and I did a lot of that for him over the years. Soon he was doing the same for my birthday. The trips he planned for me often involved a plane flight and driving. We tried to out do each other each year.

I had to throw in these photos. These were common at our house. He'd always deny that he was sleeping while watching yet another rerun of CSI or Law and Order. Frankly who wouldn't be put to sleep by all those repeats! That's my brother Jack snoozing next to him. The men in our family tend to assume "the position" almost as soon as they sit on the couch. My son David is really the champion at this and Tom and Jack just took up the challenge to see if they could fall asleep faster than him. So far David is still the champion!

So I turn 65 and I'll have to settle for being with my Tom at a sunset. Or perhaps in the sighting of a butterfly. But whatever, or wherever I am, I know he'll be with me, if only in Spirit.

Good night my love, sweet dreams my love.......

Until next time.......Always, Kath/Kathleen

The smile that lit up a room!
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Monday, May 23, 2011


It's been almost a month since Tom died. I move through my days and wait for the sadness and pain to begin. Each day ends and nothing has been felt. I'm told this is normal. But what is normal now?

Each day I talk to his picture at my bedside while I make the bed. Each night I tell him about my day and ask his opinion on issues I'm dealing with as I turn down the covers.
He doesn't answer out loud, but usually the next morning, as I begin my day, a solution will come to me as clearly as if someone is whispering into my ear.

I see him in the fabulous sunsets that are a panoramic view from my balcony. I smell him on some of his clothes which I've chosen to keep. I miss him at breakfast. But still there is no grief yet. I did my share of crying when all this first happened. Down in Naples, where he loved to be. After a few days though, I think I went numb. I make list and tick of the accomplished tasks. I meet with friends who care so much. I exercise. I am going on with my life but I can't understand why I am not yet grieving. I guess it will come soon enough and then my question will be, "when will this be over?"

I receive cards daily. Emails with stories about him. Every one of them warm my heart. The best part is knowing there were so many people who knew and liked/loved him too.

I really do feel like he is just around the corner. Maybe the grief will come when I don't feel that anymore.

Until next time........Always, Kathleen