Friday, February 25, 2011


Hey there-

I have noticed something interesting lately.

I will give you an example.

Yesterday I met a woman. We began talking and the subject of my book came up. Since I am still working on my "elevator speech" I proceeded with my usual babble about being widowed and living beyond grief, yadda, yadda, yadda.....(doesn't that just make one want to run out and buy the book!??!!) Anyway, once the word widow came out of my mouth the familiar head tilt happened. You all know the one I'm talking about. The head tilt that comes with the furrowed brow and is usually accompanied by some sort of sympathetic utterance such as "oh my", or "oh dear".

This particular conversation continued and like so many other times before the subject of my second marriage came up. Once the remarriage statement came out of my mouth the head that had remained tilted straightened, the brow relaxed it's concerned wrinkled look, the eyes lit up, the woman smiled, and said with a sigh of relief; "Oh, that's so great. I'm so happy for you."

I am not picking on this particular lady, who was a very nice and grounded person and I would love it if our paths crossed again. I have had countless conversations that have gone this same way, and I find it interesting, the visible signs of relief I witness when the person hears I am married again. As if the two minutes it took to get from the grief of the young widow thing to the joy of the married again thing was almost unbearable for them.

Why are these people so relieved to find I am remarried? It's interesting. Is the relief for me or for themselves? I don't feel much relief being remarried so it must be for themselves. Is it simply easier to talk about marriage than grief with a stranger? Do they assume that because I am married I am happy again,no longer grieving, I am "over it", I have moved on?

Well, I am married again, and I am mostly happy, but I am not done grieving, nor have I moved on. I have moved forward, accepted the hand I was dealt, and tried to play it as best as I can. But at the end of the day, Bob is gone, which I am sad about, and Mike is here, which I am happy about. Not much relief in that, really, but it is interesting.

Thanks for checking in-


Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Hey there,

I was at the Aunts the other morning picking the boys up from their overnight stay. I watched the two of them play in the deep snow out back from the upstairs kitchen window. They looked like two colorful moles darting in and out of their holes as they worked on their tunnels with their garden spades and threw snow at each other (and a few spades as well..scary!).

For reasons too complicated and boring to explain a letter Bob wrote to his dad when we were living in Portland and he had suffered from a stroke was found and given to me. I took it home to read.

The letter made me laugh. It was so Bob. He started out telling his dad about a new mattress the two of us had just purchased. He told his dad that the futon we had been sleeping on had worn out and that we needed a new mattress. What he didn't tell his dad was that I had been wanting a mattress for a long time and Bob had resisted and resisted getting rid of that futon. It finally came to me threatening to sleep on the pull out couch before Bob finally agreed to the purchase. "Undoubtably, the most comfortable thing I have ever slept on."

Bob went on with other mundane information about rearranging the living room which "Irene pretty much directed but I helped move stuff around." Bob then mentioned a hike we were planning on doing later that day and told his dad he wanted to go a little later in the day but "ever since we got lost that night at Bagby Springs Irene has lost her enthusiasm for evening hikes."

I laughed out loud at that one, remembering our experience at Bagby and how terrified I was when we were lost. We were really lost in the forest at night people, for real, just ask my friend Margaret who is still alive to tell the tale. But that is a story for another time.

Anyway, Bob finally got around to the point of the letter which was to tell his dad how much he meant to him and how scared he was at the thought of losing him. Of course, in Bob fashion, he tried not to get "too mushy" about it.

"I just want to thank you for being the greatest person I've known in my life, at least personally. If I would have known Albert Einstein personally he probably would have been a very close second (Don't let Mom see this)."

I was laughing so hard at this point that Henry asked me what was so funny and I read parts of the letter out loud to him. Henry is currently obsessed with Einstein and he laughed out loud at that part as well, which doesn't happen often, he is his father's son after all.

What a gift that letter was, not only to Bob's dad at the time but to me and Henry now. The letter got me thinking about emails and blogs and Facebook and how few letters are written these days. You know, letters, actual pen to paper letters. There is so much communicating going on but how much of it will be able to be read to the next generation.

This letter of Bob's that is sitting next to me as I type this blog is in his penmanship and on legal paper and just the sight of it brings Bob to life. Reading his goofy stories about every day stuff going on and seeing his signature "g" floods me with memories of our life in Portland and Bob sitting with a steaming latte next to him and writing a letter to his dad.

Thanks writing letters, Bob, I will treasure them always.

Thanks for checking in-