I have managed to get through another birthday and another anniversary of Jim’s death with grace. Since these two dates are 24 hours apart it is hard to mention one without the other. I am not sure that I will ever mark another year without connecting it with the other mark on the calendar. And, it is OK.
I know my last post was about Jim and the scholarship, yet I never thought of mentioning how I am doing. Now that I have been asked by several people, I thought I would try to answer that question here. Since you have been such a faithful audience over the last few years maybe you would like to know and if not, that is fine too.
I am doing OK. Some days, I am doing great, others not as great but not bad either. I am glad to say that I am doing more than just surviving. I would like to think and feel that I am embracing life as much as I can on each given day. Sometimes it is more than others. I, however, am not sitting in my house with the curtains drawn.
Jim and I always embraced life. It was one of the things I liked about him. We were always able to marvel at life and the world. I want to continue doing that. My RV is certainly helping me achieve this. Miss Elsie the cat is also helping me achieve this. All my friends, near and far, help. Everything helps.
Grief is a funny thing. There are days when it is strong and there are more days when it is not. Someone once told me that grief softens over time. I would agree with this statement. I like the mental image that creates for me. I am not sure if grief ever completely goes away. Now I am not sure about this because, I am traveling through it and not observing it from afar. Sometimes I think it is gone and then it shows up again. If grief is going to continue to present itself to me in my life then I would like to think there is a way to make it my ally. One definition of an ally is to form or enter into an alliance with. If I can make it an ally I can grow with it and let it teach me and maybe then it won’t grip me so strongly, when it presents itself.
Grief will definitely be a continuing part of my life. As I age things happen to people I know. If fortunate, when I reach the age that my father reached (95) I may know no-one my age as I may be the oldest still around. I wonder as I reach into my 60’s how my parents and friends in their 70’s and 80’s reach an acceptance that death is a natural progression of life. I know that I am not there yet.
If you read this blog, you know what I have been up to in the past year. Traveling is certainly a big part of my life. I love to see what is out there and learn new things. Exploring will certainly continue to be a part of my life. As long as I can move I will venture off to see new places and visit those beloved places as well.
Since Jim’s death I have avoided large groups of people. They have overwhelmed me and I am not comfortable there. This year I have decided to put myself out there a bit more and try out larger groups of people. It is kind of like trying on clothes; if they fit then I may keep them and if they don’t; I will put them back. My first adventure into this realm was riding in the “Bike the Coast” event two weekends ago, in northern San Diego. The biking was fun. After the ride I met two very nice women. We sat in the shade and talked. I felt like this adventure out into the broader world was a success for me.
I want to take advantage of the groups that meet around the greater San Diego area and try them out. It feels like I am also testing out what it feels like to be single. Until this point of time I have not felt single, or married, or widowed. I have been just living and being. I am not sure what being single is, it has been so many years yet, like groups I might just try them on for size and see what if feels like.
This year I want to focus on abundance in my life. I want to know that I am open to abundance in all it’s unique and unusual forms. I want to continue to be thankful for each day and for the people who help support and lift me up. Without all those known and unknown to me who have encourage and supported me I know I would not be as far along as I am in discovering the latest chapter in my life.
Today I am open to receive abundance in my life.
Today I am thankful for making an ally of grief.
Today I am thankful for those who love me and support me, no matter what.
Today I am thankful.