Good Monday Morning.
How was your weekend?
I sat back and read most of the weekend when what I really needed to do was write. I had my son set up my microphone/headset this morning and am going to try the dictation program again. It makes a lot of errors, but it is faster and easier to get into character when I’m talking through it instead of typing.
This morning I woke up grumpy. I wasn’t very nice to my kids. I didn’t know what was wrong with me.
Then, I did know.
It’s part of the grieving process to get angry, and for a short time this morning, the anger broke through the peace. I’m sure there will be more moments like that as I go through this week, feeling just a little off from what has become a peaceful and confident life.
This Monday starts a difficult week for me emotionally. Eleven years ago tomorrow, a coworker of my husband came to my door around 11 a.m. and told me Pat had been hurt and he was taking me to the hospital. He’d been electrocuted when the arm of a truck he was working on hit a power line. After a few days in the hospital, he passed away on 8/21/2010.
The rock that I had leaned on for the 20 years while we were married was gone, and I had to learn to live life, and raise my kids, on my own.
Yet I was never really alone. I had the amazing support of family and friends. Even people I didn’t know very well were praying for me. There were some rough patches, but through it all, God brought healing from the grief.
Still, even though the feeling of loss is most often not present, this week brings it all back.
This morning I take the time to honor a wonderful man.
I think I fell in love with him at first sight but managed to hide it for a few months (there’s a story there). When we did start dating, it didn’t take me long to realize he was the one. I bought a bassinet at a garage sale and started looking at wedding dresses.
We started dating in May, and by August we started talking about a winter wedding. He proposed the night before Thanksgiving, and I returned to work with an exquisite diamond on my hand and a permanent smile on my face.
We weren’t sure when to have the wedding. My grandma said February was a good month to get married because there was nothing going on in February. We planned a wedding around Valentine’s Day. I had stars in my eyes and my head in the clouds for those weeks leading up to the wedding. We decided to wait until our wedding night to become intimate, due to our faith and traditional values.
The night of rehearsal, we had a blizzard. The next day, our wedding day, was sunny and bright. We took a short honeymoon and I moved into his trailer, and we made a home.
It was a good life. Not perfect, but we loved each other. After we had our kids, there were some hectic years, but we still kept the romance alive.
When the accident happened, we were in a good place in our marriage. On Sunday mornings we enjoyed a cup of coffee together and attended a new church, where we’d decided to settle after years of searching.
Our sons were in football, our daughter was in marching band, and we were both working. Things weren’t perfect at our jobs, but we were getting through life the best we could.
When Pat passed away, he left life insurance. He was hurt at work, so there was compensation from that. We were pretty well set financially. I paid off the house and got some major work done while I had the life insurance money.
When it ran out, and my son aged out of the Social Security Survivor’s Benefit, I struggled financially. I had previously been unable to work, diagnosed with some mental health issues. I tried for disability but was denied every time. I got a job working as a caregiver to my cousin, but when she passed away, I had to start over again.
By God’s grace, a job opened up for me as a housekeeping aide for the Commission on Aging. I like what I do. I have met some amazing seniors with great stories.
The pay isn’t enough to meet my needs, however. This week I will return to the deli where I was working when my husband passed away, making salads and sandwiches and taking care of stock, for 6-10 hours per week. It’s four miles from home. The extra income will tip the scales to allow me to pay for big expenses that come up as well as save some money for the future.
With two books published and a contract for a third, I am living my dream of being an author. I have several future books in progress. And I haven’t forgotten about the Courage series, which was so popular when I was self-published.
As I take this moment and reflect back on what I lost, a good husband and my faithful partner in life, I also acknowledge what God has blessed me with:
Good friends, a supportive family, and a job that brings me peace of mind. I’m healthy and have a great future ahead of me. God will be with me every step of the way, and I praise Him for the work he has done, and will continue to do, in my life.