I hate it when people tell me they are sorry I lost my husband.  I didn’t lose him; he died.  He is gone.  It is not like I can find him under a cushion or in a closet somewhere.  He is not lost.  I am lost.  Not him.

I have been very busy this past month.  The main floor renovations are almost complete.  The rooms have been painted, the hardwood is laid, new furniture is in and it is looking good.  They will replace the gas fireplace this week and I have someone coming to hang the light fixture in my dining room.  We filled two dumpsters and a third one is almost full.  I think by Sunday the main floor of my house will be finished with the exception of the new windows.

A friend of mine hired me to help at his office while his bookkeeper was on vacation.  I worked for two weeks and really enjoyed it.  I bought some new “work” clothes and it felt good going out.  I really don’t think I was “needed” there but they certainly made me feel welcome.  It was a nice change of pace and for those hours I mostly concentrated on work and not John.  I could feel him with me in a very supportive way.

I still don’t sleep well.  I sleep on a tiny edge of my bed (on my husband’s side) and the rest of the bed is covered in clothes.  I’m going through his clothes and mine and donating bags and bags to Value Village.  Most of my clothes are dated and I have so many of them that I will never need to buy new ones again. But I can’t bear to get rid of John’s Hawaiian shirts and his Jimmy Buffet ones.  They are John.  I’ve been doing laundry and every dirty shirt of his that I find I cry into and try and smell him just one more time. I hold his shirts and try and feel him.  I miss him so very much.

I finally broke down and called my doctor on Friday to ask him for sleeping pills.  Surprise … surprise he is on holidays until the middle of October.  Is this a sign from John that I shouldn’t use sleeping pills?  I need more sleep though because when I’m tired I’m more emotional.  I went out today and bought some over the counter sleeping medication and I hope that it will help me get at least 7 hours sleep tonight.  With sleep I’ll heal.  I’ll get stronger every day.

Over the past three months I have thought a great deal about death.  I feel guilty that I am alive and John isn’t.  He should be here enjoying his retirement.  If there was any way we could have traded places I would have gladly done it for him.  He worked so hard his entire life that he deserved to spend some golden years.  He took such good care of me and the rest of the family that he truly deserved to be the one that lived.

I also understand how people can die of a broken heart.  I think of dying all the time now.  I  admit I thought of suicide.  I feel so alone and broken that death would be welcome but I have to wait until it is my time.  I never believed in an afterlife until John got ill.  One day in the hospital John was looking off into the distance.  I asked him what he was looking at and he looked at me with genuine surprise.  He answered that my dad was there.  I could see him smiling.  He nodded and then said my dad was leaving (to walk down the lane way) and he’d be back.  John didn’t remember telling my daughter and I this but we had many talks over the next weeks.  He told me that he knew there was something beyond the life that we have here.  He promised he would always be near me.  He told me that he would be the wind blowing past me, that I would feel him if I could quiet my mind.  I see him when I dream (which is very rare now).  Now I have to be strong and rebuild my life.  I need to be good so that when it is my time to die that I will be reunited with John.  We will spend eternity together.  I believe this with my whole heart.

So I have decided I’m going to start new tomorrow.  I’m going to eat better, sleep better, move more, listen to happy music and be productive.  I’m going to try and heal my heart, never forgetting John but working towards being a person that he would be proud of.  Then someday we will be together again and spend forever united.

Forever and all ways.



Running on Empty

My husband has been gone for two months now.  The days drag on but I can never remember what day of the week it is.  I don’t sob very often anymore but I cry every day.  Every day.  When people ask me how I feel the only way I can describe it is that I feel empty.  I am not complete.  My heart is missing.

I went back to Florida for a very short time.  I went with my goddaughter Zoe for some girl bonding time. She is heading off to university this fall and I have barely seen her in years.  Not because I didn’t want to see her but she lives a very busy life.  She models professionally and when she is not modeling she is studying.  It was nice being with her as she actually spent the time with me and not with her phone.  A week from now I’ll see her again when I go to Halifax to see her off to university.  Seems like it was yesterday when she was born.

I’m feeling very stressed these days.  I’ve finally started the house renovations.  I called a contractor and am waiting for the quote on my dining room ceiling and getting the hardwood installed in my family room.  It is time for the house to be fixed and I can’t do it alone.  My family has been helping me.  We have a dumpster and have filled it.  There was a major leak in the basement and the flooring was ruined and moldy.  My son and his girlfriend are now going to have two rooms … One for sleeping and one for hanging out in. I want to get my room finished this week.  John’s closet and dresser empty. I want to renovate my ensuite and I can’t do it until my room is clean.  Everything is such a mess.

But the biggest cause for stress that I have is there is this woman that owes me money.    A friend of mine told me she said was happy that John died, that in fact he deserved it. She said many horrible things that I won’t repeat here and now she refuses to pay me the money she owes.  She doesn’t owe me a fortune but she does owe me money.  What bothers me the most is what she is saying about my husband.  I am taking her to court.  I will spend whatever I have to in order to make her pay.  Only because she is so heartless.

I also have gone back to work.  I am self-employed and I took enough time off.  We were supposed to be retired this year but now that John is gone I don’t think I want to sit around doing nothing all day so I have decided to go back to work.  I’ll see how this goes … Being self employed is hard work but it is better than just sitting here waiting to die.

I have written out my draft will and given it to the lawyer.  I want to get my affairs in order so I can stop thinking about that aspect of my life too.  Once my will and POA is completed I will begin training my son and daughter on how to run the family business.  Maybe when that is all finished that I will start to heal.


Grief is a very strange emotion.  One moment I can be going about my daily business and then suddenly I feel as though all the life has been sucked out of me.  I sob.  I have never sobbed before in my life.  In that moment I feel … totally broken.  I remember how depressed I was after my dad died but it doesn’t even touch this grief.  I still am struggling to go look to the future. All I want to do is get my affairs in order so that I can die.  I know I probably have 20 more years left in me but I’m counting them down in my heart.

I had a hard time sleeping last night as I kept thinking about my husband.  Then today my son, grandson and I started to clean out the garage.  I was still having a hard time keeping my emotions in check so my grandson didn’t notice that I was upset.  Everything I touched in the garage reminded me of my husband, how we were going to renovate our house together this year.  I was on the edge of tears all day.  Then I opened a box and found a card from my husband.  It was like getting a hug from my husband.


Plan B

So I haven’t had the best start to my new life. I got up yesterday, ate a bowl of my healthy steel-cut oat breakfast (recipe will be posted later) and started to clean my basement. Why start in the basement? Well … just because it is winter time … my furnace decided to stop working. (side note … I really hate the three dots and I have no idea why I started using them … I really need to stop.)

I went into the basement and almost had a heart attack. Cat poop everywhere (we had a sickly cat that had bowel problems), I could barely get across the basement because of all the garbage bags down there (my daughter cleaned out her room before moving out and left it there along with most of her belongings) and a mess left by my son when he moved his games room upstairs.

Two trips to the dump later I was starting to feel under the weather. I’ve had a persistent pain in my right side since Sunday morning and it was getting worse. Now those who know me know I hate going to the doctor but I decided it was time to go. I called my doctor and was shocked when his nurse said I was to come right away.

My doctor examined me and told me to go to the hospital. He called ahead to the hospital to have them expect me. After he had examined me he said he believed it was my appendix.

The doctor at emergency also examined me, decided it was my appendix and ordered blood work, had me change into a gown and an IV was put in. I had to drink this foul-tasting orange liquid and wait for it to flow through my digestive track. Then off for a CT Scan. They inserted a die in my IV that made all my blood vessels tingle (makes you feel like you wet your pants but you don’t really).

Back into a little room I go (but at least they gave me a TV so I could watch NCIS while I waited). The doctor came back in and said it was not my appendix and they couldn’t find anything other than one large kidney stone and one small kidney stone. After waiting an hour to make sure I didn’t stroke out from the dye I was released with no answer to my pain.  So off I go home (with a nice needle for pain) and I go to sleep in a freezing house.

So today I got up all enthusiastic to start again.  Knock me down and I’ll pop right back up!  Ate another bowl of steel-cut oats, finished cleaning the games room, cleaned a pathway to the furnace, made a healthy meat free dinner (fresh mushrooms, garlic and tomato sauce over pasta) and had a hot shower in a cold room.  Furnace people are coming tomorrow.  I’m still in pain but not nearly as bad as yesterday.

So everything in life is about how you handle Plan B.  Yes, my dream is to have an “A” life.  I want the “happy every after”.  I want my husband to feel strong and well. I want our finances to ensure us to have a comfortable retirement.  But that never happens for me.  My husband has major back and body problems and the economy directly hit our retirement plan.  But how do I handle this?  Do I sink? Or do I swim?  Do I wallow in self pity (like some people I know) or do I make the best of the situation?  The choice is mine and I decide I always need to be ready for Plan B.

So I am looking at the past few days as a positive thing.  Yes, I was in terrible pain yesterday but I got a state of the art CT Scan that checked me out and found nothing.  No surgery, nothing came up on the scans other than one big and one small kidney stone.  (I am having them blasted next month.)

My furnace went out.  OK, positive thing is it forced me to work on the basement.  I had planned to work on my room, but now I have the games room cleaned and available to use while renovating my house.

Nothing ever goes the way I plan.  So I need to learn to rely on Plan B.

Change Change Change

I have been thinking too much lately. I’m not overly happy with my life and want change. The other day I saw a job that would be perfect for me and I jumped on it. I was going to apply for the job and I knew that I could sell myself to this organization. I would be useful again. I would earn my own money …. help out with our retirement fund. Then I started thinking … my house is a mess and needs major renovations and I promised I would spend more time with my mother. I wanted to be creative again.

I realized going for this job really isn’t an option for me right now.  If I take the job I’ll continue living in this broken down house.  Time will slip away and nothing will ever change.  I need change in my life.  Positive change.  I need to take time for me.  I need to get healthy, fit and happy.  Change, change, change.

So how do I make these changes?  How do I get to the place I want to be? I started this blog to make changes and then it sort of slipped away from me.  Now I need to take it seriously.

Step one.  Breakfast.  Tomorrow’s breakfast is already make.  I made steel cut oats in the crockpot (my nephew started me on them and I love them now).  Healthy eating starts now.

Step two:  No junk food.

Step three:  Move more.

Please keep me on track.



Great Expectations

I am having a difficult time writing today. They finally started my kitchen (over 3 weeks late) but they won’t be finished in time. I need to get back up north and must leave by Monday at the latest. The condo is a mess and has been for over 3 weeks … They demolished the kitchen and then went off to work on other jobs.

Yesterday we discovered we had dry wood termites in the tall boy in our bedroom. We bought it from a consignment store … Beautiful piece of old furniture. The Orkin man feels we caught it in time but still it has been rather upsetting.

And, finally, yesterday was our 31st anniversary. I had great plans for the day and it all fell through. No ones fault though .. just a problem with all the workmen. Oh well we will always have next year.

Frustrated in Florida

I love my home in Florida but it needs some renovations. We have already done major renovations such as new windows, an enclosed Florida room and new shower and toilet. The last major renovation is the kitchen. We met with the contractor in July, gave him the down payment and arranged to have the work started October 1. Prior to that date they were here four times to measure.

October 1 came … They showed up in the afternoon and gutted the kitchen. For the past two weeks the only other activity is when the electrician came to retire and when they came to look at the ceiling.

I keep calling and getting machines. Today I spoke to the general foreman and her promised he would be here today. It is 10 pm and I am still waiting.