Wednesday, October 26, 2011

George and Edna

I spent the afternoon yesterday sitting with my friend Laureen's mom, Edna. George had a doctors appointment and Edna can't be left alone anymore, she has Alzheimer's. I knew from the time I walked into the house she no longer remembers me. This woman who was so very funny, insightful and a stand in grandma for my children after my mother died is slipping away. She was confused. Wondered why I was there and where was George. She played with her hair and smoothed out her clothes. Then I asked her where she met George....

She wasn't sure, but knew it was a long time ago. She also told me about when she was younger she would come home from school, put her bathing suit on and walk down the street to the ocean and swim with her brother and sister. How she went to high school at Brainbridge Academy. How her mother would cook for the old people in the neighborhood. How she used to tap dance on the stage and sing with her brother on the radio....

George came home, carrying his oxygen tank. His doctor increased his oxygen to 2.5. About two years now he had part of his lung removed. At almost 90 he still cares for Edna, tells his children he does not want to be separated from her, but is showing signs of becoming over whelmed.

I am saddened because these wonderful people, who only want to spend the last of their lives together are being robbed because of a horrific disease has invaded her mind and taken the joy she once had in life and is taking her away from him one little piece at a time.

I so wish I had spent more time listening to the stories my parents told, my grandparents and George and Edna. Why didn't I listen more, when they all had the time to tell me the stories of their lives? My parents and grandparents are gone, George and Edna will soon follow. another piece of the past lost to us forever.

Monday, October 24, 2011


I have a real dislike for Mondays. The kids come back from the weekend all crabby and mouthy. It's only been two days. I find myself saying things like.... I don't care how you talk at home, around here you can't call each other B****, or anything else like it. I really can't believe I spend my days saying things like that. Today I had to tell a kid to go spit out that pencil eraser ( metal top and all). It's a choking hazard. These are 8th grade regular ed kids. Not my kids, who it wouldn't surprise me to say these kinds of things.

I spent more than 30 minutes today cleaning the copy machine of stuck paper. After that I tried again same thing happens. I went to the office, still covered in black ink and the secretary proceeds to tell me all I need to do is pull the paper out. After asking her what in the hell do you think I've been doing for the past half hour...well that was in my head....what I said out loud was I put an out of order sign on it and I have to go back to class....

My student A decides he isn't going to do anything but walk in circles around desks. The teacher tells me to do some "planned ignoring", this is part of his behavior plan, ok I know I don't have a PHD like the guy who wrote his behavior plan....but this is stupid. I'm supposed to ignore his behavior, let him be a distraction for the others in the classroom. How am I going to tell one of them that they can't do the same behaviors A does. Why is it ok for him but not them....guess that didn't come to mind as he was writing the plan.

Tomorrow is a half day.....all the middle school kids will be heading to all the fast food joints....look out downtown!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

walk in the woods

What a difference a day makes....went walking on the bike path this afternoon. It was a cool, crisp, fall day, sun shinning about 60, just gorgeous. I really love this weather. Had alot of time, just me quiet looking over the lake. Watched a blue heron fly over. The water was shinning and sparkling like only a lake in New England can do, surrounded by leaves of red, orange and gold. Makes me wonder why I don't do that more often. The calming effect was unbelievable, almost magical.

So what revelations have come to me on this magical walk? What pearls of wisdom do I have to offer? Well one thing I have to stop letting things at work get to me when there is nothing I can do about them. I can't worry about things I have no control over. Gee always said worry doesn't help any.

 I have also realized that I will never get over Gee's death, not really. I will have good days and bad days and that's ok. On good days I will rejoice in the memory of how very lucky I was to have had such a wonderful man in my life. On bad, well self pity and tears for that same wonderful man or for myself.  Grief is such a lonely thing. It doesn't matter if you are surrounded by loved ones you are alone. It will consume you if you allow it. That wasn't an option for me...I promised Gee to be strong so I have tried to be.

A walk in the woods....

Saturday, October 15, 2011


Little feet are running through the house tonight. Clayton and Katie are at a wedding, Jack was the ring barer. Unkie Bums (Mike Rummery) and Clayton have been friends since high school. Jack was so cute in his tux. We watched his favorite movie Despicable Me, had a juice box and some cheese and he went to bed. He has made my week.

 I had an awful week. I really enjoy going to Kristina's science class. It's about the only class I'm in that I  get to do more than stand around. Well because my student A has been tossed out of every class except science I have to do academic support with him. So that means I'm not in science any more.

I have had one of those weeks where self pity is as thick as molasses around here. I just was missing Gee so much. If I could have I'd have stayed in bed all week. Made myself go to work like always one foot in front of the other. I just don't want to do this any more, like I have any kind of choice.

 Fred is my only saving grace so to speak....always present and watchful. Having to care for him and the cat gives me a reason not to go right to bed after work. He has suffered too this week, no walks just tied out on the deck.  He's such a nice little dog, I don't know what I'd do without him.

I hope next week is better than last.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Dearest Gee

I wonder if you miss me as much as I do you? I hope you don't. My heart would break if after all you went through, the pain and suffering, and still you have the pain of separation.

 My hope for you is you're sitting on the porch with Boss by your side. Relaxing in the warm breeze with the smells of lilac in the air, drink in hand. Maybe the smell of ham hocks and beans or collard greens cooking along with cornbread in the oven would be more to your liking. I still hear your voice,"."something sure smells good." With the smooth sounds of Albert King in the back ground.

I still miss you as much today as I did the day you passed from this life. First I felt guilt, for feeling relieved you had gone, no more pain, no more suffering.  Then came the anger, anger at the VA, why did they put you on a 5 year schedule, angry with myself for not insisting you see a civilian doctor sooner, angry with  God for having this most horrible of diseases invade your body once again, angry with any/every one who dared to say it was a blessing, what did they know about it....Now there is sadness, overwhelming melancholy along with the guilt and anger. I dream of you, waking in tears to the thought that once more you have left me. My days are a conscious effort to put one foot in front of the other. Work, home, sleep round and round, over and over.

The passage of time hasn't relieved me of the pain, I just hide it better. I think sometimes I hold on to the sadness because if I let it go what then? What can possibly be waiting for me. My heart aches for you. I am afraid that soon I wont remember the sound of your booming laugh, that gentle voice, wispering to your babies, the feel of your hand in mine.  I was afraid to loose you, now I fear loosing the only thing I have left, my memories of you.

Always and Forever Yours

Monday, October 3, 2011

Deerfield Fair

The Deerfield Fair is one of those many country fairs going on in New England this time of year. This is the 135th year. We love going. Except for Rachel's freshman year and the year she was born we have gone to this fair every year. They have horse pulls, cattle pulls, cows, goats, pigs , chickens, 4-H, craft entries, flowers, vegetables the list is endless.

It also has food vender's. Yes we eat our way through the fair. Always the same order, how else could you be sure to see everything. We try to get there early, Huge donuts for breakfast....walk through the cow barn and the draft horse barn....time for pizza or baked potato.....walk through the commercial buildings, checking out the new snow blowers (I'm buying one this year), through the flower building, time for buffalo, either burger or sausage, but don't eat the bun, save room tor more food....go through the craft building, beautiful quilts, knitted things, paintings and photos, oh the cheese some great cheddar, xxx sharp, of coarse there are samples...lets head over towards the horse jumpers, time for fries, not that guy, to greasy, the guy near the ring.....get a large to share, watch some horses walk towards the sheep dog demo, the farmer talks of his old dogs and we know all their names...Pete the pig dog, Rosie the one who was hit by lightning,Nell, Rosie's mother.....head over to the 4-H buildings, all the projects by the local groups....time for apple crisp with ice cream.....

OK the sky is looking a bit dark, 60% chance of rain... have eaten all the have to foods...seen everything except the horse pull, but that's not until the afternoon so we call it a day and head home. We really called it, we hadn't made it to the highway before it started to pour, like the skies just opened up.  Once again we had a great day, lots of good food and something to look forward to for next year!