Welcome to Christian Widow's Walk

Dear Readers,

Thank you so much for visiting. If you care to follow my story from the beginning, I encourage you to click on the oldest post first and make your way to newer entries. In so doing, hopefully, you will see the hand of God in my healing journey that started in April, 2009.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

If I Could Send A Love Letter

Posted May 23, 2010  (One year into widowhood)

It’s hard to comprehend that it has been thirteen months since you changed your address, Bofren. I have gone through a years’ worth of seasons and now experiencing my second spring without you. I know that you would be glad to know that I am doing so much better now, since the first year is behind me. I wonder what your first year has been like, but then you probably don’t have an awareness of time or anything that goes on, this side of heaven. I think that’s a blessing, because it would be painful for you to witness the transitioning all your loved ones and friends have experienced without your presence. I think you would be surprised if you knew the impact you had when you were here and how very much you are missed now that you are enjoying being a heavenly resident! It comforts me to know you are with our Lord and experiencing indescribable joy. Some day, you can show me all your favorite WOWS!

There is only one family that I can think of, who don’t miss you at all! They would be the rodents of unusual size, or the critters (as you would have called them) in the back yard that would have been dead meat a long time ago, if you were still here. I mowed down all the tall vegetation around their front and back doors so they would have no hiding places. Much to my dismay, they come out to sun themselves, since their personal groundskeeper was so kind to give them a better view of the garden. It’s like I put out a sign reading: Groundhog Heaven; Free Food, Coming Soon!

Although my life is very busy, I think about you many times throughout the day. Sometimes those thoughts bring tears, sometimes smiles and sometimes both at the same time. I think about all the wonderfulness of you that I miss so much. One day last week, one of your co-workers came to help me with some vehicle stuff. Of course, we talked about you the whole time he was here. I told him you were “the best thing that ever happened to me” and he agreed with me, that you left a giant hole in our lives. I was able to keep it together pretty well emotionally, until, as he was leaving, he said, “if it will make you feel any better; Buck really loved you!” Through my tears I told him, “yes, everybody knew that!” Your love was obvious to many! I was so blessed by the love you invested! Thank you for loving me so well and so deeply. To have you to love and be loved in return was two of the most precious gifts God gave to me!

If I could talk to you face to face, there are so many things that I would want to share with you right now. I would want to tell you how Faithful God has been to me and about all the love poured out on me by our loved ones and friends and neighbors. Now, more than ever before, I realize how important you were to me and how much I miss the person you were. I miss your friendship and the way you loved and took such good care of me. I also miss worshiping with you and how you were so committed to carving out time for us to have fun together. But, what I miss the very most are your hugs, Bofren! All was right in my world, when your warm embraces consumed me! I’m sorry, but it makes me weep now, as I think about it.

I know someday, I will be greeted once again by your smiling face, twinkling eyes, mischievous grin and the bear hugs I long for! Until that day, I promise that I will go on finding joy and making the most of each day that God blesses me with; living my life to the fullest, as I know you would! I miss you more than I can say, but my life is good, as I look forward to seeing what God has planned for my future. I will always love you and you will live in my heart forever!
Moving forward until that day!


Friday, October 25, 2013

Life Is Difficult (Sometimes) But Good

Posted May 19, 2010 (One year into widowhood)

Many years ago, I read a book titled: The Road Less Traveled by M. Scott Peck M.D. His first and memorable sentence reads: Life is difficult. How many times have you and I found that statement to be more than true? It seems that few things in life are ever easy. No big surprise if you have been around more than a handful of years. I don’t think that is necessarily a negative attitude, just a realistic one perhaps.

My Bofren was a very handy person and was always willing to tackle almost any project around the house. He was skilled in many areas of homeownership and had an array of power tools, hand tools and a varied selection of all kinds of hardware. After we moved into our new home in the end of September 2008, aside from planting a lawn and some basic necessities such as installing blinds and curtain rods, Buck was itchy to get started with building his dream garage. He had just gotten it under roof and shingled before his heart attack struck him on New Year’s Day, 2009. Obviously, he had been too busy to get any of his tools and hardware organized in that three-month span, so, his inventory is still scattered amongst the garage, shed and basement.

I have few regrets about my relationship with my soul mate, but now looking back, I really wish I would have spent more time just hanging out with him, when he was busy playing his "Handy Andy" role. I could have learned so much from him, if only I had taken the time and I know he would have thoroughly enjoyed being my teacher. My heart hurts right now as I reflect on all he accomplished for us and for so many others when there was a need. He always enjoyed doing projects for other people, more than he liked doing them for us, as he saw the homestead jobs as self-serving and not as important. He only made them a priority because they were important to me and he liked to keep the little woman happy!

Over the past several months, I have been trying to make our new house more organized and homey. A few days ago, I hung some pictures in my living room and of course made more holes than necessary, because I miscalculated. Then my frustration grew when I hung my ironing board holder in my walk-in closet. I’m thinking it must be part of Murphy’s law, that you are guaranteed to run into a wall stud when you don’t want to and they are never where you hope they will be.
I have recently shared that since Easter, I have not been able to have an “ugly cry”. That was before my Powder Room project.

I consider myself to be of average intelligence and trusted that I could install a toilet paper holder. How hard could it be? I’m sorry to say, I handled it poorly! Just finding everything I needed was trying and time consuming. The instructions called for a quarter inch drill bit and yes some of us read the directions. I’m thankful that I realized they were lying when they said it would take 15 minutes to complete the project; the audacity! The drill bit looked bigger than a quarter inch to me, but I trusted what it read, or at least what I thought it read(with my glasses on).

The short version of my story: drill bit made holes too big, only after the drill died and I had to recharge the battery. Had to FIND larger wall anchors and screws to match, that would work with the new bath hardware. I boogered up the set screw so that now it won’t turn either way. The toilet paper holder is on the wall, but one side jiggles. I had the “ugly cry” and a tantrum to boot, and threw the tape measure out of the powder room in frustration! The 15 MINUTE JOB only took most of the afternoon and so it goes with the inexperienced homeowner.

God wasn’t listening to my prayers that day. I was humbled and embarrassed at my behavior. One of these days, I will learn the lesson He has been trying to teach me for years: perfection is not to be experienced this side of heaven. And that day's lesson: it's okay if the holder jiggles.

So, if you come to visit, and need to powder your nose, be very careful if you examine my work(wo)manship, especially any in my circle, who take blood thinners! The set screw is razor sharp and could prove to be a threat to your life. You’ve been warned! Examine at your own risk! I think I will ask for help the next time or at least have someone teach me to identify the right drill bit. It's not fun to learn these things the hard way, but I am learning and life is good. I am thankful!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A Healing Heart

Posted May 2, 2010  (One year into widowhood)

Another “first” is behind me. April 21st: the anniversary of my sweetheart’s passing from this life to his eternal home, came and went without the emotional response I anticipated might occur, as has been my experience for other such days on the calendar. The sadness is no longer overwhelming and although the memories are frequent and many, I no longer feel the intensity, or pay the painful price of having loved so deeply, as I did before Easter. The restoration that the Lord provided early Easter morning (described in my last entry) is still helping me to move forward in my journey of widowhood. I believe my darkest days are behind me now, as I continue to look to the “Son~shine” of each new day.

There have been days when the natural flow of tears showed up again, because of some recollection of my Bofren, such as finding a forgotten photograph or opening his aftershave just to feel connected again. On occasion, I have wished that I could just have a good, healthy, ugly cry like I had grown accustomed to, but it wouldn’t come forth. It’s a strange feeling. My eyes fill up, my stomach tightens and sometimes my body will shake, but the grief won’t come out. I sense the Lord is saying, “No my daughter, I healed your emotions. Your heart is stronger now. You no longer need to grieve so painfully. It interferes with the JOY I have for you”.
After spending the morning and afternoon with Sarah and some of my grandchildren, I headed home and stopped in to see Jessi to deliver a hug on the way. My plan for April 21st evening hours was to attend the Studio meeting, a monthly gathering of artists at a local church. However, God had another plan. The meeting had been cancelled because the art director decided to give birth to her baby instead. Now that’s a legitimate reason for cancellation!

So, I decided to go to the York Hospital to visit my friends in the Open Heart ICU. This visit was very different from my April 1st trip to the unit, (That occasion was pre-Easter). There was a marked contrast this time: no pounding heart or tears to rinse away my blush, as before. One of the nurses asked if my ears were burning earlier in the day, because Buck’s caretakers remembered and were talking about us. Thankfully, more of my favorite nurses were on duty this time and I had a pleasant, emotionally pain free reunion and another divine appointment to encourage one of the staff members. I love when that happens! Few things make me happier than having the privilege of pointing people to the Lord, for whatever their present need might be!

That day ended with a new homeowner skill of changing the battery in my smoke alarm, CO2 detector. I was shaky on this little assignment, because it involved a stepladder, (I have balance issues) and more importantly, because it was hard-wired and the electric wires had a tab over the battery chamber that read: power connected. It made me nervous! Even when I turned off any circuit breakers that might be supplying the electric, the chirping and computerized voice, (informing me of the low battery), went on and on until I figured it out. The annoying, incessant noise was great motivation to push through the fear of getting shocked and restoring the peace and quiet again! I prayed my way through. I think my Bofren would have given me a high five and a “what a woman”, (with that precious sparkle in his eye, that I miss so much), when I was truly feeling like such a girl! These things don’t come naturally. I’ll know better next time! It’s all good and kind of funny to me now!

My first year of widowhood is behind me and looking back I have learned many things. Namely, my God loves me and has gone before me each step of my journey, holding my hand and often carrying me. I also learned how important true love and friendship is! My loved ones and friends have loved me through the hardest days of my life. You know who you are. I pray you all know how important you are to me! My future is bright and I look forward to seeing what God has planned for me. Thank you so much for continuing to care about my journey. God bless all of you!