Thursday, June 23, 2011

My Tree

Hey there-

Father's Day, 2011.

Mike wanted to go on a bike ride before we grilled some fish on his new grill for dinner. I should say before HE grilled fish on his new grill for dinner. I thought a bike ride, in between the rain drops, sounded like a fabulous idea.

I watched him take off down our street, concentrating on clipping in his biking shoe to the pedal of the slick Trek mountain bike he rides.

It was Bob's bike.

They are Mike's shoes, apparently Mike has smaller feet than Bob.

I started laughing, belly laughing.

One of my favorite funny memories of Bob is the first time we went out on our bikes after he got those clip on bike shoes and so lovingly replaced the pedals. We were riding through SE Portland on our way to Ben and Jerry's for a little sweet treat. If you have never been to SE Portland you won't know how congested the narrow neighborhood streets can get with parked cars and how many bicyclist can be cruising these narrow and uncontrolled intersections. Portland is a bicycling city.

Well, a bicyclist came from the perpendicular street and we had to stop short. Bob, unfamiliar with his clip on shoes was unable to remove his foot from the pedal and tipped right over. It was in slow motion. He just fell slowly over, his feet trapped on the bike, helpless to stop himself.

I laughed so hard seeing this normally coordinated, sporty guy topple over, still trying to extricate his foot from his pedal.

Nice, huh? I'm so loving. It was just so hilarious. And he wasn't hurt or anything.

It's interesting how life stacks together all of it's parts on top of each other into one big whole. Like the circles of a tree that show it's age. The years stack on top of each other, wrap around and on top of the years before, some are wider than others and some have little bumps, each have their own story, each is an important part of the whole tree.

My live husband can unwittingly and unknowingly bring up a memory of my dead husband and I can laugh over a memory of Bob while making a memory of Mike.

This is my tree.

I love my tree.

Thanks for checking in-


Friday, June 17, 2011

Beautiful Dreamer

Hey there-

The other morning Henry came out of his bedroom and went to the cupboard in the kitchen looking for breakfast. His shoulders were bent forward and his head was hanging a bit and he didn't answer his usual "Good" when I asked him how he slept.

"What's wrong?" I asked him.

"I had a dream about Dad," he told me. Then he started sobbing, big shoulder shaking sobs.

Upon questioning he couldn't remember much of the dream.

"But I remember the emotion," he cried.

I attempted to comfort Henry by telling him my belief is that when you dream about the person who is dead it is the person visiting you, checking in, saying hi. So dreaming about Dad should be a happy thing. As I explained this theory to Henry I omitted the part that I never dream about Bob, never.

Last week Mike came downstairs one morning and told me he had a dream about Bob the night before.

Going with my theory, that is a little weird.

He said that Bob and I were together talking about the boys summer haircuts that Mike had given them and how much he liked them. Bob didn't say anything to Mike in the dream, no thanking him for helping to raise his boys or any encouraging words. Apparently Bob and I simply hung out on the back porch and watched the boys and their short hair run around for a while.

Rude. I thought to myself, but maybe I'm just bitter that Bob seems to be visiting everyone else in their dreams but me.

"He seemed very happy with the hair cuts, I think the fact that he's happy with what we're doing was implied," Mike said.

Very generous of Mike I think.

Well, if Bob visits anyone else out there in their dreams be sure and send him my way. I wouldn't mind if he came by and said HI.

Thanks for checking in-


Saturday, June 11, 2011

A House of Cards

Hey there,

Henry (10) had his first "health" class in school last week.

He came home chock full of information about adolescence.

"Mom," he asked me, slurping up his ramen noodles with a fork, "when did you start adolescence?"

"Excuse me?" I stalled, just exactly what was he looking for?

"What about Dad, when did he start adolescence."

Now there is a question I never thought to ask Bob before he died.

Henry went on to explain that when he was in adolescence he might be happy one minute and angry the next, his friends would be more important to him than his family (what!?!?), his motivation could be lacking, and he might have trouble focusing.

Hmmmmmmm........I think I am in adolescence NOW........

"When I learned about this stuff in school my teacher called it puberty, only he pronounced it pooooberty," I told him, still stalling a little, not sure why.

I have no idea what made me tell a 10 year old boy a story involving poo since five minutes later I saw him dancing in the dining room building a house of cards singing "pooooberty.....pooooooooberty".

Today the boys and Mike were leaving to go camping. I told my boys to be helpful.

"Mike has three healthy young men with him and he better not do all the work himself. Be focused," I encouraged pumping my arms in the air.

"OK, Mom," Henry said, eyes trained on his house of cards, "unless I enter pooooberty, and then I might not be very motivated or focused."

Damn school.

Thanks for checking in-


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Dead End

Hey there-

What is the statute of limitations on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?

I have been having some health issues lately that have required Dr's. visits and tests and scary possibilities and waiting for results.

Last week I sat in the Dr's. office and listened while the very nice doctor lady told me she was sure everything was fine.

"No worries," she told me. "I just want to be thorough, I am sure we are leading to a dead end. You look healthy and your lung capacity is better than mine, I am sure you are fine."

This very nice, very thorough, youngish, kind of spunky lady had no idea why I sat in front of her with tears streaming down my face.

"That's what the very nice doctors told my husband too, and now he's dead," I told her.

"Oh dear, how long ago did your husband die?" she asked, with the familiar head tilt.

"Seven years."


I know she was expecting me to say six months or possibly last week by the way I was reacting. I know it seems crazy to be sitting in an office seven years after your husband died, remarried, and by most accounts happy and mostly sane, and be freaking out about a non-life threatening diagnosis and some test results for a possibility that will "most likely lead to a dead end".

I know this logically.

But apparently my body has not caught up with my mind on this one. Apparently, I am unable to sit calmly in a Dr's. office and listen to a very nice lady tell me that she is sure I am fine while she busily orders complicated tests to rule out scary sounding possibilities. Apparently I did not learn the first time not to ask too may questions and to NEVER EVER Google the scary possibility that your very nice Dr. is sure you don't have but insists on testing you for anyway, just to be thorough.

Apparently, I have a little PTSD.

Yes, seven years later.

Oh my.

Thanks for checking in-