Sunday, October 25, 2015

Your words

Summer 2013

Piano notes and my little girl's fingers
and knee scrapes and cut chins and joy
and fear.
The irrepressible toothless grin from
a water slide collision and golden skin
and hasty ponytails.
Nancy Drew with her mommy and in the land
of Oz with me.  The scarecrow has a brain,
as those sleuths know.
A Bike ride and a dance.  A wandering bird building a nest.
Ph-on-ics.  Old movies of heavy nostalgia in black and white.
Our technicolor world!

These words are yours.  Written when it was simply a reflection of summer, not a reflection of your last healthy summer.  Before you ever thought to utter the words "I'm going to make it"
How I miss you so.  

I love you handsome man. 
take care, 

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Don't call me a goat head.

Go ahead was something we would say.  Either to let the other speak first or move first or whatever.  I don't know when you started this, but you would say to me don't call me a goat head.  That would make me laugh every time.  You liked making me laugh, I know because you did it so well & so often.  You would know just when to make light of a situation, alway kept me sane and helped me not worry so much, especially about the things I can't control.  

Even now, when I get overwhelmed by trying to keep up with everything from the house, to laundry, to yard work, to homework, and most important quality time with our little girl I think to myself, what would Richard say.  We were so good together, I'd be the one with the plan and you'd be the one with the easy going attitude when things didn't go according to plan.  You use to say life happens when you make other plans.  Before I met you I had come to terms that I might not find "the one" everyone always talked about and was accepting that marriage might not be in my future.  Granted I was only 23 when we became friends & 24 when we started dating.  Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be marrying such a wonderful man at 27.  I love the fact we started out as friends and were best friends until the day you died.  

love you handsome man. 

take care, 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015


Carpe Diem
Try your best
I'm proud of you
Grow old with me
Come home safe

All phrases you use to say.

You're no longer my emergency contact.  That really sucks!  It was a really good couple of days.  I even took down all but one of your hats.  I was OK.  I didn't feel guilty, it was nice to make changes, to finally realize that things do not have to look the way they did when you were alive.  I don't share this room anymore.  Then I went to the eye doctor, and she asked me to confirm all the information including my emergency contact.  I had to change that, and that wasn't OK, that really sucked.  I wasn't expecting that, I was ready for the "how's your husband?" not for a formality on a form.  The dumbest things just bring me back down to this funk.  It's like taking two steps forward, then one step back.  I don't know when I'll find the strength to move forward again.

I see your pictures on my wall, candid shots, funny poses, loving glances.  Memories of our life, a life I no longer have.  I'm trying to find my life.  Wearing my hair differently, wearing make up.  You always said I didn't need make up, but you're not here to tell me anymore, not holding my hand, not hugging me tight.  I really am trying.  I focus on my little girl trying to do right by her.  Just when I think I'm out of the forest, into the light and I can see what's ahead the clouds come and and the darkness engulfs me.  Tomorrow will come.  The sun will rise and it will set.

I love you handsome man.

take care,

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Bop it.

I don't know why I do this, but at night when everyone else is in bed asleep I come to the computer and look at pictures, tonight I clicked on the link "Book of Memories" and watched your pictures fade in and out.  There is a place on there where people have left notes and I saw one from Amy.

Amy's name reminded me when the three of us shared that house on Polk Blvd.  She had this "bop it toy" and we played games and just laughed and laughed.  I remember when you & I left that house & moved to San Diego the only comment our neighbors shared with our landlord was they could hear us laughing through the common wall.  Well, probably me, I am a loud laugher, get it from my Mom you know.

So this game, it involved a toy that gave instructions to bop it, twist it, or pull it.  The more tasks you completed correctly the faster the instructions came.
You, me, & Amy (I know that's probably not proper english, but I did use the oxford comma) played this game with an alcoholic beverage.  Of course when you got the buzzer of shame and pulled instead of bopped you drank.  We were so young, I think we were in our mid-20s.  I was not a big drinker back home, I didn't really go out that much.  When I lived in Des Moines we did not go out and drink either, but every once in a while we would hang out at home and play silly games.  I never had a hang over or got sick with alcohol, you would tell me stories about your still younger days and getting sick or being hung over the next day.  My speech would start to slur and I would be bopping when I should have been pulling and I looked at you and said "If I get sick, you're in trouble."  It was always a joke and became a ritual for whenever we played these games.  You were part of my youth and taught me so many crazy things & so many very incredible important things.

I can't believe it's been six months since I last saw you with my own eyes. It was six months on Sunday.  I still remember after everyone left I laid next to you in the hospital bed, just to feel you next to me one last time.  I caressed your cheeks with the back of my fingers feeling your rough, yet gentle stubbled face. It was so hard to leave that room, to leave you there all alone.  I can still smell your fragrance, feel the hair on your chest, and the warmth from your arms as they engulfed me in your embrace.

I don't think I'll ever be whole again.  I feel like my life needs to be a distraction to just get through the day.  I complete daily duties, fulfill a routine, try to keep my mind on to the next task.  It's hard to find joy these days.  If I'm out somewhere doing something fun I remember the last time I was there with you, or I would imagine your response to the event.  All the things you wanted to do with us and never had the chance.  We never took a class at kitchen window, though you sure didn't need a cooking class.  Didn't get a chance to take our little girl to London or your beloved Spain.  I can't do that, I have to remember all the things we did and experienced.

Our first planned trip to London July 2005.  The terrorist attack changed our plans and we went to the next best place in the world, Texas.  We decided to use our trip insurance and cancel, not because of safety concerns, but we did not want to be tourists in a city healing from an attack.  You took it in stride and planned our entire trip.  I had the time off from work, we got in the car and drove for 24 hours in my little 2001 Saturn SL1 to Austin, Texas.  You looked up all kinds of things about Austin, the "live music capitol of the world" and of course all the bookstores they have to offer.  I still remember stepping outside our hotel and we could just hear music playing.  We decided to follow the sound and go listen to some live music, when in Rome right?  Just like now I had my camera and was ready to go.  You drove and we slowed down as the music got louder and finally parked.  There was music under a bridge and there were lots and lots of people.  All kinds of people really, I distinctly remember a woman wearing a very long fur coat with shorts, it was July in Texas. We walked toward the stage and saw people in line for something as we moved through the crowd. Then it all came together, Richard figured out it was a service with pancakes for the homeless.  He looked at me with my camera around my wrist, smiled with those beautiful brown eyes, and we left.

Our trip to the Alamo during that vacation will have to wait for yet another night.

love you handsome man.

take care,

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Here goes...

A friend of mine suggested I write down some memories.  It could be helpful and might be nice for my little girl to have a place to read some stories and hear our tale.  I will do my best and I can not fail.

1998 Des Moines, Iowa.  I just moved to a brand new state to start pharmacy school.  I was 24 years old, my first time living on my own.  I lived in an apartment, not on campus, as a matter of fact it was in a not so great neighborhood on the East side of Des Moines.  I did not know a soul living in Des Moines.  I was so lonely and homesick it wasn't funny.  It was July and it was hot and humid.  I found a $1 movie theater I went to pretty regularly just to sit in the air conditioning.  My apartment did not have that luxury.

I had my own apartment, student loans to apply toward tuition, scholarships to help with expenses, a pharmacy tech job I was able to transfer with my company and I needed to open a new bank account because my bank back home did not have branches in Des Moines.  When I arrived my car was out of commission for a week because the transmission failed during the move.  My new checks arrived for my new checking account; however I did not receive them, they were stolen and money was missing out of my account, which did not have much to start, I did mention I was a student right.  I did have money coming in with hours at the pharmacy; however the pay is not the same in Des Moines as it is in San Diego.  In California I was making just over $10 per hour, that was reduced to the Des Moines rate of just over $7 per hour.  I was not made aware of this adjustment until my first shift at the pharmacy.  What a beginning to my new independent life.  It was OK, because I still had a job, a scholarship that would cover my rent for the year, and I would be starting school soon.  It all worked out.

Before classes started I explored my new city.  I took a walking tour of Des Moines, walked all over down town and the capitol complex.  Things that caught my attention was the lack of different languages spoken.  Back home I heard all different languages and saw all different cultures represented in my neighborhood & school.  There was also no Starbucks in Des Moines, completely foreign to me, I come from a place where there were 12 Starbucks with in a 3 mile radius.  My first trip to the grocery store on my own was interesting.  I got all my shopping done, unloaded my cart, paid for my groceries and the nice young man bagging my groceries took my cart away.  I asked the checker where he was going she looked at me as if I was from another planet, and said he would meet me outside because he was bringing my groceries to my car.  I had lots to learn.

About a week before school started, this would be August, I went to the orientation on campus and after I decided I would try the coffee shop on 42nd & University very near to Drake's campus: Friedrichs World Coffee.  I walked in, ordered my vanilla latte (my usual drink) and was helped by a very nice man.  And that is the first time I ever laid my eyes on Richard, then he was Rick.

I will stop here for now and continue my story another time.  No tears, this feels good.

Good night handsome man. Love you.

take care,