I was not planning to post again this soon. Today I found out that friends of mine have lost their 19 year old son in a car accident. It immediately struck a deep chord within me. I do and do not know their feelings. This moment in their lives will be full of so many feelings. This I do know. I also know that no parent should have to lose their child. There is something not right in this and yet it happens. If you can think a little bit of Tim and Sandy today and in the weeks ahead. They may not know you but energetically all those loving thoughts will hold them up and support them. This I do know.
I want to tell you about my husband Jim. A major part of the reason I am on this journey is due to his and my struggles over the past years and I want you to know him, just a little. I met Jim dancing. We are folk dancers and when I first saw him on the dance floor I noticed his marvelous blue eyes right away. I also noticed he stood tall and straight and boy could he balance & swing. After dances on Friday nights a group of us would go to the City Deli for coffee and goodies. Jim always sat next to me and although we had conversations none of them were ever finished.
Fast forward a year. I was getting ready to join the Traveling Nurse Corp and was packing up my apartment to move. It had been hot and I had been walking the beach most evenings. One night with the help of his former girlfriend, Leslie, I phoned him and invited him to walk the beach with me. Within a half hour he was at my door and we went walking. I remember him riding the roller coaster even though he was afraid of them.
I moved out to Albuquerque as a traveling nurse. Within two weeks this man was at my door. We started a long distance relationship. It was so much fun to have someone to explore with. It was so much fun to discover who I was becoming through another person’s eyes. At the end of 3 months Jim wanted me to move back to San Diego and in with him. I did not feel ready. I went up to the mountains and meditated and thought. One day, I know it sounds totally weird, I heard a voice tell me that Jim and this relationship would be one of the most challenging and yet rewarding experiences of my life. I came off the mountain and called him and told him I was coming home at the end of the month.
February 4, 1991 I moved into some of the best moments of my life. Jim and I had a very unique and special relationship. We were connected in a way that I never thought would happen to me or anyone else. We fit so easily together. We both loved to travel and challenge ourselves. Even though we both knew there was a specialness to the relationship it was through others that it was acknowledged. Deana, our realtor and friend has said more than once she has never seen two people talk and communicate with such honesty and openness. I think we often did this because we were so concerned about hurting each other. There are many levels to a relationship and I really thrived with Jim. It is not saying we did not have moments when we argued but they were few a far between and neither of us would let that moment go without sorting it out.
Here are some of my remembered qualities of this wonderfully eclectic man.
- Jim was a very eclectic and intelligent man. He was an avid reader and was able to process and retain knowledge and then use it to help others.
- As a counselor and a Dean of Counseling he often had to make difficult and not always favorable decisions. Even though people who worked for him might get mad at the decisions he made, they never did not like him.
- He was so well respected at Grossmont College where he worked for 24 years.
- He was a good friend and valued his friendships above all else.
- Jim loved to read and had a natural curiosity about life and all that was in it.
- He loved to go to the movies with his buddies and watch the thin in plot, big in special effects movies.
- He was kind and caring with all people and animals.
- He loved a good or bad joke. I have to admit I never fully understood his humor. It didn’t matter and I laughed anyway.
- He was very athletic. He ran with ease. One of his friends, Henry, said that Jim never trained for the races they ran and yet Henry never once outran him in a race. The last race they did Henry thought he would finally finish before Jim. A mile or so before the finish here came Jim loping by him to the finish. Henry trained, Jim rarely did.
- Jim loved to bike, kayak, hike and any other physical exercise.
- He encouraged me in so many ways, with my art work, with my dancing, and was behind me all the way when I chose to leave nursing and find a new profession.
- I liked that he would be able to put on his “counseling hat” when I needed advice.
- Like I said in an earlier post, when approached with an issue he would take the time to think about it, consider the options, pick the one he felt was most right, act on it and complete whatever the project was.
- He was an introvert. He loved people but needed time away.
- Because he knew he was an introvert he chose to go into the theater and challenge himself to meet people and become more. He was part of a Mime Theater Group in San Francisco and also acted with other companies in the LA area. He had often mentioned that he might like to do this again in retirement. Sigh
- He was afraid of heights. To challenge this, when he turned 50, he went to Circus School in the “Haight” and went out on the Flying Trapeze. I laid on the ground and took photos. Not only did he go out on the trapeze, 25 feet up, he was caught by a professional and swung to another trapeze. He liked it so much he went to a trapeze school nearer home and did this twice more.
- his mother once told him he was arrogant. We laughed about this but there were times he was.
- there were moments of stubbornness.
- He loved to make things. We built two doll houses and 2-16 foot kayaks.
- He worked with stain glass.
- He brewed Beer and as far as he was concerned, there was nothing better than a good dark stout.
- Jim was fascinated by magic. He never wanted to know how it was done. He liked the mystery of it all.
- He loved anything to do with space. Twice Jim attended Space Camp for adults in Alabama.
- He was in awe of the sky. I learned so much about the stars from him. We would go to the desert and camp and see some pretty amazing things in the sky.
- We climbed an old growth Douglas Fir and slept 25o feet off the ground.
- He was a dancer. He practiced ballet, tap and jazz for many years. After I met him we bacame very involved in the Scottish Country Dance group. He looked so fine in a kilt. LOL
- Jim loved cars. He had a 2000 BMW Z3 that he more than loved. Not only did he take very fine care of it he also read and knew about this car. He loved to detail it. My car was also the recipient of his detailing love.
- He liked to watch The Simpsons and Star Trek.
- He built jet and helicopter models. Nine of these models are on display at the Annex to the San Diego Air & Space Museum.
- If he did not know something he would research it and learn as much as he could about it.
- He did yoga until the day he died. The last week of his life when he was in the hospital I helped him do yoga every night before he went to sleep.
- I always thought he was comfortable in his soul. For me he was spirit.
- He was a cat lover.
- Jim loved people and he brought the best out in everyone.
- I personally know that this man walked this world with grace. There were very few who did not like him and respect him. I loved him.
WHAT ARE YOUR MEMORIES OF JIM?