how did i get here?

my husband, my beautiful Dragon, died suddenly at 12:03 AM on 9 February 2009. there was a cold, lovely full moon and 3 feet of snow on the ground. i "slept" for the following 10 months and "woke" to the physical and emotional pain and torments of deep grief. i "woke" to find i had moved the day of his funeral and that i am lost. i am looking for me while i figure out the abstract, unanswerable questions that follow behind any death. my art has evolved. his death changed that as well because i am forever changed and will forever bear the mark of losing the only man i can ever love.
there is alive and there is dead and there is a place in between. i am here wholly in my heart for my children, but i feel empty inside at this time. i miss him. i have not gotten very far in my grief journey. i make no apologies for this.
this is my place, my blog, where i write to tell the universe that i am still here.

Friday, October 29, 2010

happy Halloween & the VA update

first off, i hope you enjoy the song i added for Halloween.

and now for the blog.

i do not believe in cliffhangers for the sake of having a cliffhanger so i will get right to it.

i called the VA again. i have been almost hyperventilating with panic. my claim for my Dragon's death pension has been approved. the letter is in the mail. i will not know how much i will get each month but it will be something. i know it will not be enough to pay my rent and electric and cable. i have to accept that fate. it panics me, but there it is.

when he told me, i thanked him. i think it was my voice. i was not ebullient. in fact i was shuddering on sobs. the man asked me if i was all right. i said, "yeah. i guess so. we'll see." he asked if i was in trouble. i said, "financially? definitely. emotionally? always will be. my husband is dead."

then he said, "i know, ma'am. i am so very sorry. and i'm sorry it took so long. i wish i could tell you what the letter states but i can't over the phone. but it's coming and you've been approved. it isn't enough for what he went through. he earned a hellava lot more, but it's all we can give you. i am a Force Recon Marine from the 'Nam era. i know what he went through. call us if you have any questions."

we disengaged the conversation and i just sat there. the letter is coming. i have been approved. and yet i am still frightened. i do not know how much it will be but, hey, it will be better than what i have coming in right now. i can only hope i can make it all work.

on Wednesday, Nov 3rd, i have a job interview at ...... wait for it ....... cliffhanger ..... Build-A-Bear. it is a group job interview and i still may wash out but, i got called to come in. my meager resume that reflects teaching pre-school and teaching art to K through 6th grade about 100 years ago, and then being an artist all my life seemed to not throw them off yet. so pray for me if you believe. i see that many do not {pray/believe multiple choice} anymore and i apologize for asking for prayers so intensely when i was falling apart a bit ago. it was not my intent to upset anyone or proselytize anyone into Christianity or the Roman Catholic Church. although, do i get points for Heaven if i do? sorry. i had to do that. a little joke between me and someone who "May Stop Reading Your Blog!"

i got a random email after my panicked posting of before telling me this person was going to stop reading my blog if i did not stop shoving God down everyone's throat. i did not write back, but i thought, how will your stopping reading hurt me when i did not know you read in the first place? and how is your stopping reading going to hurt me at all? "ooooo. i going to stop reading your blog." okay. so stop.

so for those who do not pray, i guess, and only if you choose to, cross your fingers for me shortly after lunch time that day. that's when the interview starts. unless crossing your fingers is somehow against some deity or ideal you cleave to. {i just wanted to see how far i could push it. i will be waiting to see if i get another email from this person, and btw, "God."}

in the meantime, the Bun has been busy. her fuzzy hands are flying all over the place on different commissions.




and the Bun is very, very excited. she goes on the Soul Widows retreat next weekend ~ the 5th - 7th. here is another link to Elizabeth's site specifically for this retreat. you can see what Bunny will be doing that weekend and at what time. sort of voyeuristically stalking the Bun.

i write for an online resource magazine and i will be posting there about the retreat. not while i am there. Bunny cannot afford that kind of technology. i will write about it when i get back, and here as well.

in the meantime, while waiting on the VA letter {whew i think/i hope/at least it is something} and waiting on the job interview, and to go to the spiritual retreat, the Bun, me, i am filling my hours embroidering, sewing, quilting, doing what i hope is a lasting legacy. and if i am only known as "CR 'heart' SR" then i will be known as "Dragon loves Bunny" and that is pretty cool.

happy Halloween everyone. i wish for you all no tricks, just treats. and hope. lots and lots of peace and hope.

Monday, October 25, 2010

"to be or not to be"

so this is it. this is what my life has become. not what i had worked so hard for. not what i had dreamed of as a little girl. all my tiny little dreams unmet or altered in such a way as to become punishments rather than blessings.

i had wanted to be safe and for less than two handfuls of years, with my Dragon, i was.

i had wanted a family. i have daughter and a son who i kept safe to their adulthood at great cost.

i had wanted a home. i never had that. first, it was his property, and then my Dragon and i were thrust into poverty and rentals and moving, always moving. but the children were safe and getting their college educations and that was what mattered at that time.

now i am not safe, my children are grown and no longer need me, and i have no real place. i am struggling and fearful and what is worse, now i must face all this alone. there is so much pressure to simply survive. roof. lights. food. and along side the barest of necessities more pain and longing than i have ever known. i miss his strength. i miss his arms. i miss laying beside him in the dark.

i hurt so much tonight. i can hardly breathe. and hope? where is it? why am i struggling to find it? i thought i could do this. i thought, maybe i could get a handle on this, but i am failing, i think. i am rock bottom and yet, i know i can get lower. i feel terrible and yet, i know i can feel worse. i am scratching in the dirt for hope of some kind, for some thing to turn around. i keep telling myself, "this is as bad as it will get. hang on." and then something happens and i am back to fighting for a single breath that does not have panic pressing down on my lungs. who am i anymore? i am not wife. i am not friend. i am a widow and yet, i do not seem to do that right.

forsaken. used and turned away from. unnailed, uncoffined, unknown. i do not remember where i read that, but it popped into my head tonight.

abandoned soul.
but i keep waking up. why? what for? how, when i go to bed in such pain? i go to sleep and i almost do not care. but i keep waking up. there must be some purpose, some reason i am still here. what? my children are safe and grown. he cannot touch them anymore. i was with my Dragon when he died so that he was not alone. that job is done.

maybe i am here for my two little dogs. i love them and they need me. we are true companions. maybe i am here for the quilts. the set of 3 quilts i have been commissioned to do at this time are very, very heavy with embroidery. very heavy embroidery of images that hold special meaning to the family. thousands and thousands of stitches. it all has to be done by hand. so maybe i am here for the quilts.

tomorrow i go to check on my application i put in for a job at Build-A-Bear. yes, the store where i bought Bunny, the star of all my photographs and her own Facebook page. she gets a lot of traffic, a lot of questions asked of her. there are people who will miss her being online when they do not even remember me. i post her in the third person and i have actually be sent an email telling me to "let her speak for herself." you have got to be kidding me. seriously? i wrote back that she signs to me since her lips are only embroidered on. i got back an, "oh, okay." truly surreal, but definitely not boring. Bunny laughed.

i do not know if i am going to make it. i do not know what else life is going to shove down my throat. but if i keep on waking up in the morning, then i will get out of bed. my dogs will need to go outside for walkies as Wallace would say. i have a ton of embroidery to do. i never stopped reading a book before i finished it. and i have only walked out of one movie in my entire life and that was after a very graphic scene involving piano wire as a garrote. some of those Japanese films get a little too much for me.

it hurts to breathe tonight. it hurts to think about getting up in the morning. it hurts to be so lonely and yet i cannot seem to find anyone who will sit with me, stay with me, even for a little while that doesn't involve using me for my hands. {that sounds wrong but you know what i mean} the counselor i was talking to seems to think i am fine and her caseload is crammed. she says i am articulate and aware, that i am working through my issues on my own very well through my writing {apparently i "really know how to convey a thought"}, and that i am handling my solitary isolation with the "grace of a cloister." she was actually impressed with the number of hours i am alone. 16 - 20 hours a month. that's the extent of human contact that i have. out of a month i cannot make up the hours of one full day spent with another human being. face time as she called it. oh, and yeah, if i feel like taking my life, i am to call her. but she knows i am not the type. i took the test. i passed. flying colors. otherwise, ttfn.

and then there were none.

so here i am tonight. and i am tired, and dejected, and hurting so much. i am reaching out, but it will be hours, or days before anyone may read these words, and figure out what to say in response, if there is anything to say. apparently i am doing fine on my own.

so i will handle it on my own. i will force myself to calm down. i will do what i always do. i will turn my mind to him. i may go outside on the balcony, in the darkness, and watch the moon. i will close my eyes to the cool breeze and remember the feel of his hands. i will call up his voice. i will let it wash over me and take me far away from this place.

i will try to remember, and accept, that once; once i was loved,
and he did not leave me.
it took an act of God to take him away from me.
i will remember the time i had with him and what we meant to each other. i will remember how we looked at each other and knew, we just knew how to communicate without words. then i will go to bed and try to sleep. and if i wake up in the morning, well, i will keep taking care of myself by myself all over again.

When, in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes,
I all alone beweep my outcast state
And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries
And look upon myself and curse my fate,
Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,
Featured like him, like him with friends possess'd,
Desiring this man's art and that man's scope,
With what I most enjoy contented least;
Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising,
Haply I think on thee, and then my state,
Like to the lark at break of day arising
From sullen earth, sings hymns at heaven's gate;
For thy sweet love remember'd such wealth brings
That then I scorn to change my state with kings.
~ Shakespeare, Sonnet 29

Thursday, October 21, 2010

october full moon ~ Memorialist and Seeker

full moon. the attraction is still as strong as it was during the first full moon after he died.
Thelma drew my name out of the hat. i won the book, "The Five Ways We Grieve." i have discovered i am a Memorialist, not on as grand a scale as Shah Jahan who built the Taj Mahal to his beloved wife, but i keep watch over and take my photographs of the full moon. i have my shrines.

i think i am also a Seeker. i am exploring the questions of my place in the universe, in this universe that does not have my Dragon in it.

i woke up at 3:30 AM screaming, sucking in air to sob so hard, clawing at my throat and chest, struggling to breathe from a nightmare i suffered through. it was horrible and i was sitting up and still could not breathe. i fell back and broke in two.

i died and i could not find him. i called and called through a darkness i could not understand. it was so dark in my room and it furthered the panic that was beating up my mind, attacking my ability to reason. where was he? where was i? was that brush, those few years i had with him all i would ever have to keep me warm, to give me a feeling of security, to allow me the privilege of feeling love? am i the little match girl who lit all the matches at once to desperately see the vision of joy and love and family, then, in despair, watch the light die and the vision of what once was, of what could have been, be extinguished....

...as it always must?
it is another full moon and me, Bun, womanNshadows, identifies with two other labels. Bunny is a Memorialist and a Seeker.

as a Memorialist, she saves all the stories. she turns them into embroidery and memory quilts. she builds shrines to her Dragon and keeps his love and laughter alive in her mind to comfort her during her long days and long, long nights. as a Seeker, she is trying to find answers to where he is, where she will end up, prays that they will be together again, and wonders why it must be so. she meditates and communes with a silvery, cold, silent orb that crosses the sky tonight, as it did on that frigid night in February 20 months ago. it lit my Dragon's way that night. maybe it will light my way.

if i go first, the Seeker that i am will take everything in. finally i will understand why life had to be so hard. the Memorialist that i am will write it all down, memorialize it, and try to leave you a sign.

peace to any and all who read this.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

toward him

i am still here. i wish to thank C., and C.L., and M., and T., and V. for the emails of concern and care. you took the time to reach out to me during your busy lives and i am very, very grateful. you saw me for what i am and what my life has become ~ a Bunny who has fallen off her Dragon over open water. she is treading water, not knowing which way to swim. your kindness means so much. bless you all.

i have been alternating between all-consuming panic and an acceptance that this is my life now. i am waiting for the VA ~ still in that 10 - 40 day period of when they say they will let me know. i am still searching for work. my son and daughter have both told me that, no matter what happens, i will never be homeless or without food. my son-in-law's father has even tried to reassure me. and i do feel that they are weaving a net under me. my children reminded me of a book i read to them when they were small titled, "A Special Trade." i raised them and kept them safe. my Dragon and i paid for them to get through college. it is time for me to lean on them. it does, however, cause me great, great pain to be in this position. i am desperately and actively searching for work via outside my apartment and through encouraging anyone to recommend my sewing skills to whomever may want them. please.

i have been hiding from life by working almost nonstop on all the embroidery on a quilt and on jeans for a little girl.
i am almost finished with a sunset on a beach image my client wants. still a little more orange to go but i bought the floss today so, after this posting, back at it.
and i give my back a break from the quilt embroidery work by going to sit on my balcony and embroider on a pair of jeans for a little girl, a sweet 6 year-old who even wrote me a note thanking me in advance.
this pair will be my version of a Tasha Tudor garden. the next pair will have a unicorn on a beach with a sand castle.

i can hide in my embroidery work. my air conditioner broke a month or so ago and the apartment had been getting up to 95 degrees inside, hence sitting on the balcony as much as possible. the part finally came in and the two men came to fix it. they saw the beach embroidery and were almost speechless. they both paused over it, gingerly touched the treads. i told them a little about the young man for whom the quilt will belong, a little about the family, and why i go to so much extra effort and detail to try and bring them comfort. my daughter tried to point out that i really do good work.

{she was a little more ebullient with the compliments but i cannot repeat those words. i cannot talk about myself that way. i can only see my flaws and faults. my Dragon was my mirror and he is gone. before him, i never saw myself as anything other than the words used by my mother and Voldemort to describe me. i had only in the last couple of years accepted that my Dragon really believed i was valuable. he taught me to see what he saw. this is something i will have to remember, his words, when i look in a mirror. but always, i will keep these memories to myself since he is not here to back me up.}

i miss him. i miss him desperately. i miss him holding my hand. i miss laying with him reading, his fingers absentmindedly playing with my hair. i miss his touching me. i miss him coming up behind me whispering his risque plans for a romantic evening. i miss him. i miss everything about our life together.

it has been 20 months and 10 days. the full moon is coming. i am tired. i am in pain. i am lonely, but only lonely for him. i need to survive without being too big a burden to my children. i need the VA to approve the pension. being terrified and poor and grieving is purgatory. time is passing and i am further and further away from the last time i held him and smelled his skin and kissed his mouth. i am being pushed along to places and experiences i never wanted to feel again, or to feel for the first time.

throughout this time, i have been keeping him alive in my mind. i have written that my heart is gone and after introspection, it really is gone. i do not feel anything anymore except my love for him and for my children. beyond that, i am empty. i still have no interest in even thinking about meeting a man. no one compares to my Dragon, and i am still too involved in my memories of my Dragon's lovemaking, in his way of giving me faith that i matter, in his way of letting me know how much he needed me, like i needed him. i am still too much in love with him. i had a terrible marriage, one where the pendulum swung from being ignored to being hurt. and then my Dragon came into my life and he gave me so much more than a marriage. he gave me a sacrament.

i love him. i miss him. i wish he could tell me what to do. i wish he could just whisper in my ear like before: "it's going to be all right."

but really, even after 20 months and 10 days, all i have to do is close my eyes. his voice comes to me and i can hear him. i keep my eyes closed and focus on his strength. i try to feel his belief in me. when i find it, when i can breathe it in, then i can get up and go on.

toward him.

"i love you
not only for what you are
but for what i am when i am with you.
i love you
not only for what you have made of yourself
but for what you are making of me.
i love you
for the part of me that you bring out;
i love you
for putting your hand into my heaped-up heart
and passing over all the foolish, weak things
that you can't help
dimly seeing there,
and for drawing out into the light
all the beautiful belongings
that no one else had looked
quite far enough to find.
i love you
because you are helping me to make
of the lumber of my life
not a tavern
but a temple;
out of the works of my every day
not a reproach
but a song.
i love you
because you have done more than any creed
could have done
to make me good
and more than any fate could have done
to make me happy.
you have done it
without a touch,
without a word,
without a sign.
you have done it by being yourself.
perhaps that is what
being a friend {my lover, my husband} means
after all."
~ Roy Croft

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

fear

"no one told me that grief is a lot like fear." ~ C. S. Lewis.

i have both this morning. grief and fear. mine are exclusive from each other. Jan. 1 is my deadline now. he is through and there is nothing i can do. do not tell me what i could do. there are things behind closed doors that i am afraid to make public. accept that i am between a rock and a hard place.

i need the VA to come through. i need a full time job in a city that has closed 16 libraries and are working on a plan to close 12 schools and consolidating others affecting the teachers and staff of 37 schools. how do i find a job when i did not graduate college? i left to care give to my mother who died. then i needed a job first, and one thing followed another.

i am nothing. i have not amounted to anything other than what you see here. i am a mom. i create. i sew. i am tired. i am getting older. i have nothing. i am nothing. i have been betrayed in business dealings and most definitely in my personal life. what is left? nothing. that would be me.

i had so many dreams when i was small. and my dreams were small. i wanted a home and a family. i thought i would be safe married. my husband would protect me from my parents. i would be able to take care of my family and my home. i would have a garden. i would be an artist in and around being a wife and mother. 1950's style dream world that blew up in my face on my wedding night. i was alone with fear and worry and stress and self-worthlessness such as i had not previously known even during my childhood with a volatile mother.

i met a Dragon and we took care of my children and were so poor in the process. we love each other so much. he is everything to me, including protection and another person to help shoulder the pain of merely living. i miss him. i need him more now than i ever have. but he died and i am left alone again with fear and worry and stress and self-worthlessness only i am old and tired and have too many decades built up of feeling like this. my shoulders hurt. my eyes are tired. i sometimes find it hard to get a breath. and what's the point? it hurts anyway.

i need the VA to come through. i call. i write. they say they are working on it. now i have to call them to say, "please, hurry. please. hurry."

i am embroidering a beach on a Memory quilt. i am keeping the young man in my thoughts as my needle goes through the fabric. it must be colorful. it must be peaceful. i want him to look at it, his eyes drawn to the vivid sunset behind the palm trees and be soothed that maybe his dad is there, hanging out, biding his time until the family is reunited; however they believe, however they dream and wish. always how the family wants it.

all i will ever have are the dreams i protect. i am getting far too tired to protect myself anymore. the waves will come and roll me over and over and there is nothing i can do but try to swim to the surface.

what is this anyway? is this life? scratching out an existence in the dirt? i am not alive anymore. there is not even meager happiness. my children are grown. i see my son when he can. i see my daughter once a week. we talk on the phone but i am not involved in their every moment like i was when they were young and still in my care every moment of every day. what kind of life is left for me without him being here to help me, protect me, share with me, keep me warm, listen to me, make me laugh, let me listen to his beautiful voice, hold my hand, touch my hair, love me. i am still so wrapped up in him. and i am so afraid of what is going to happen to me now that he is no longer here to help advocate for me. to help me try to have a life instead of the existence of something akin to a dermestid beetle. i preform a service, like said beetle, but no one wants to take one home and have it sitting on the sofa, or hold a conversation with it. just let it do its job and walk away.

i want to feel safe like i felt when i was in his arms. and since i can never, ever, ever again be in his arms, i just need what most people take for granted. a place to live. food to eat. forget health care. forget the pursuit of happiness. i had it with him and i am not greedy asking for more when i need to make sure i have a place to live and food to eat.

see what i mean about fear? terror? gut-churning panic?

Dragon, where are you now that i need you so?
~~~~~~~~
addendum ~
i just got off the phone with the VA. they are in the "final stages" of processing. i told her my situation. she was very sympathetic and put me on hold to try and give me a ballpark on timing. 10 - 40 days i will hear. it is in the "checking to make sure the information is correct and approval" stage.

please, pray for me, even if you do not believe it in. i do. i need a miracle, a very, small miracle. and i will not ask for anything else. i just want to survive. no big dreams anymore. no goals. i just want to survive.

Monday, October 11, 2010

down Bunny down ~ the therapist

Bunny is very down. this past weekend
and ALL this week she has suffered so. oh, God, is it really only Monday?
i had a wonderful telephone call from S. thank you. you read between the lines. i needed to talk. the Bun needed a voice from outside her head to say, "i see you out there. you're gonna be fine." thank you, sister.

i connected with a free grief therapist. yep, the Bun found someone who would talk to her for free through a hospice connection. Bunny sat there and unloaded all her hurts and fears, her doubts and her worries. she talked about missing the ocean and about Dragons and Bunnies and feeling lost. the therapist had Bunny get online and show her Bunny's FB page and this blog. Bunny told some dark, dark, hideously dark secrets and she tattled on other widows who have made her feel like....

CRAP

and it felt so good to let someone with a face know how she felt. the woman listened and jotted things down. {love the word "jotted"} but then she quit jotting and just listened. she told Bunny/me in the end that i was fine. she said i was healthy and doing very well for being so alone. then she emailed me this. elaborated her jotted notes i guess.

"I've been thinking some more. You're actually doing incredibly well. You can keep coming if you want, but you're healthy. You are handling your grief and your isolation in such a way that it is amazingly healthy. I don't recommend being alone the rest of your life and I hope someday you can get a car and go out some, but you are handling this really bad situation very well. You're doing great, in fact, for all the stuff you've been through. You were beaten down for years and years, abused, but then you found this very great love and was forced to suffer the loss of him. And for you, this was a deep, deep loss. Your story is really, well, it's a love story. I've read your blog and looked over your Facebook pages. I can feel the magic you and your husband shared. And your creativity is an enormous outlet for you. It also makes you suffer more than some because you are so very sensitive. You think very deeply, philosophically. I want you to allow yourself to continue to create. Use Bunny like you are. I see that it is a good thing for you. I see the person, the whimsy and sense of humor that you really have tucked deep down, being able to come out through Bunny. People are responding so positively to Bunny which should make you feel good because it really is you they are responding to. You have such a kind and empathetic soul. You have such creativity in you. You really are an artist. And, {insert Bunny's name here}, your husband was right. You really are an incredible person deep inside. You need to allow her to come out."

as if i could stop creating. i will stop creating when my poly-stuffed, bunny mind shuts down and that will happen when my heart up in Heaven in my Dragon's keeping stops beating, letting him know it is time for him to come get me. can you just grab that image? my beating heart sitting in a bowl or on a paper towel on the table beside where my Dragon sits in the evening in Heaven. or he has it stuffed in the pocket of his jeans like his car keys.

thud. thud. thud. "Dragon, what's that sound?"
"my wife's heart."
"why in Heaven's name do you have it?"
"she gave it to me. it's like an alarm clock in reverse. when it stops, i can go met up with her."
"how ingenious. love it. good work, you two. well, have a peaceful wait for her."
"thank you. i'm just going to sit here by the ocean. she'll be ready at some point and if i wait here, i'll be close by."

so Bunny is fine. i know. SHOCKER. or plot twist. even though she's got this black tread mark on her bunny body where life has run over her, she is fine. she feels down, but down is normal. down is fine. she feels sad, but she suffered a great loss. the Bun is being creative and that is a big check mark on the good side of grief.

at least she has her new camera and it feels so at home in her fuzzy little paw; her limp, tired, wet-from-wiping-her-teary-little-button-eyes paw.

A-boom boom ba
A-boom boom ba
A-boom boom ba
A-boom boom ba

Can you hear my heart beat in this bond
Do you know that behind of this bond
Lies the deep desire I'm in love hey
Make a wonderful love if I may
All my dreams to be all I can do
Only I love, only love
And you say I knew we should find a new way
Make a wonderful love if I may

Can you hear my heart beat in this hurt
Do you know that behind of this hurt
Lies the deep desire I'm in love hey
Make a wonderful love if I may
All my dreams to be all I can do
Only I love, only love
And you say I knew we should find a new way
Make a wonderful love if I may

Can you hear my heart beat in this hurt
Do you know that behind of this hurt
Lies the deep desire can you love hey
Make a wonderful love if I may

Make a wonderful love if I may
Make a wonderful love if I may
Can you hear my heart beat in this hurt
Can you hear my heart beat in this hurt

Saturday, October 9, 2010

troll with a roll of film

the warm feeling of my good day on Tuesday has not lasted. i am cold inside again. we are supposed to be able to recall happier times, wonderful moments, and keep ourselves bolstered with the confidence of what was. but i think there needs to be some kind of balance, or at least a better one than i have.

put the good times, the happy memories on one side of a scale and there should be some heft to it. the bad should not far, far outweigh the good. not by the margin that my scale is tilted.

i am alone all the time in between my daughter's once a week day off. there are people who email me fairly regularly, and keep emailing. some are readers who chose to comment through email. some are my readers from the web magazine i write for. all want me to write to correspond with them in my, i guess to them, unusual style. that has been nice. people know i am out here. i guess you could say i am not "alone" but i do like to occasionally see a face, hear a voice, sit beside someone and listen, and be heard. i am grateful for what i have,

but i want to go home.
i am on a list for emailed updates on real estate in Rockport, MA. it is "home" to me since it is where i lived a life that had love in it. "hey, mom. guess what? someone did love me. got nothing to say? yeah, finally." i was the unlovable one.

we were sitting on the bluff overlooking Whale Cove, {see photo below} on a stormy day. we were silently taking in the stiff, cool wind and listening to the cry of the gulls and the rush of the waves. there was lightning in the distance hence the newly added soundtrack} that Dragon was keeping an eye on. he broke our silence by asking this question:
"Why are you always surprised when you see how much I love you? Would you like to tell me what happened to you?"

"my mother told me i was unlovable. she had said that i may get married but he would not really love me. she was right. he told me i was unlovable. you know the other stuff. but i guess it is just the repetitive syllables of un-love-able being beaten into my brain over and over, and over for years, decades. and you are so beautiful. you are so capable and strong and, you're just a lovely person. how can someone like you love someone like me?"

"I love you because of all the gentleness you have inside you. You see so much beauty in the world. All anyone has to do is take a walk with you outside to know what's in your heart. And after all you've been through, you still carry hope inside you. You still think such beautiful thoughts. The scars you think are ugly tell me the story of your survival to hang on until I could get to you." he put his arm around me and told me, "I will never leave you. I have you now. You're mine, and when there's no more you and I on Earth, there will still be a you and I."

i embroidered that last sentence on my own Memory Quilt. from the look in his eyes, he meant every word of what he said to me. he loved me. he loves me? i love him.
i want to go home. i want to go to the ocean where the sky can be seen without tall buildings in the way and there is grass and sand under my feet. i do not know where home is anymore since home was where he was. i am alone all the time and i am so used to it that when i am out for long, i get anxious. i think, "i should get back. i have work to do. i am having a nice time with {my daughter] but i am not working and i need to work to have value."

i have no value as a friend. "you make the quilts and then they forget about you." "you don't have a car and you're grieving so you're not any help to me and too inconvenient to come and get." i am very low today. a woman, another widow, had entered into the realm of my little world here through the 'Net and she had wondered if i had wanted to go somewhere with her. she knows i have no car. i wrote to her that i would love to go, it was a place i would have loved to have gone and seen, no details here, but i told her my daughter works Saturdays and i have no car. she did not respond until late last night with an email where she wanted me to comfort her while she was having a bad night. i got on Facebook and chatted with her and she felt better. today, she is meeting two other friends at this place, spending the day with them. they both have cars.

the Bun is alone. in her mind, in her empty chest where her heart does not reside anymore, and in her actual physical little Bun Bun world, she is very isolated. she knows people can be alone in a crowd but even being alone in a crowd sounds kind of nice to her today when she knows there is a crowd she could have felt alone in. there were things she could have looked at and taken pictures of. she could have been lonely in that crowd, shuffled along listening to snatches of conversations, feeling the sun on her furry arms and the breeze through her furry fur. tousled fur for Bun would have been a nice warm memory to have added to the meager few she has.
so many people have told her, via email, that they love Bunny. Bunny even now has her own Facebook page. if you want to befriend her, contact me and i will tell you her last name. several of her friends are Canadians. Bunny is big with some people up there. but she wonders if people expect to see Beach Bunny, Bun Bun, The Bun and are disappointed by the countenance that she actually has been cursed with. Bunny is soft and pretty. the real Bunny is a tired, sad woman with a 1000 yard stare. she is hollow-eyed and haunted looking. she is haunted by the love she had finally been given and had to watch leave her.

she returned her daughter's camera and has been using her 35 mm from the ancient days of yore while waiting on her new digital she finally save the money to buy. the real Bunny looks nothing like soft, pretty Bunny with the digital.
she is just a toll with a roll of film. a boho, hippie troll with a creative mind that sees beauty in a world that does not see beauty or value in her because why? she does not own a car? she is not flush with cash to go places, even a little bit? she knows how people could be but choose not to be. Bunny as troll is not pretty on the outside. {her Dragon thought she was. he also said she was pretty on the inside and that is why he loved her.}

is it her? she is the common denominator in a lot of failures and yet,

and yet,

her Dragon loved her just as she was. he spent time with her and got to know her. he learned what made her smile, and laugh. he saw her eyes. he saw her heart. and she gave it to him to keep forever. that is why she has no heart anymore. shhhh. listen. hear that? nothing. yeah. Bunny gave her heart away to Dragon. he took it with him so he does not get lonely for her.

i guess the troll is only really the Bunny to him. get to know the Bun and that outer lovely mirage you think she is becomes the troll. maybe one day, someone will see the Bunny behind the troll and allow the Bun to be a friend. even if she does not have a car.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Bunny's Incredible, Awesome, Almost Fantastic Big Day

oh my gosh, Bunny had the most awesome day!

Bunny works all the time. she really does. she sews and embroiders and sews some more. she has not had a day off, like a real day off, like a day that she did not work, since July 4th when her son, PBofH {Precious Bundle of Happiness}, had driven up to spend the holiday making the whole family {almost} together once more.

this morning, Bunny's daughter, PBof J, {Precious Bunny of Joy}, kidnapped her, literally kidnapped her out of her apartment to go get things! there was a knock on the door and there she was! PBofJ and she swooped in and made Bunny get dressed and grabbed her purse and camera and made her get in the car. we shopped! we shopped!

Bunny had gotten a check and she desperately need a couple of things. but one thing Bunny desperately needed was a pumpkin for those awesome roasted pumpkin seeds like she had made in Days of Yore.

PBofJ took Bunny to the pumpkin patch. not really a patch. it is really an area of grass between the parking lot of a shopping center and the gonzo, huge, major throughfare, asphalt artery for traffic that gouges through the city. but there were pumpkins and mums set up and Bunny pretended she was at the farm stand out on Cape Ann that she and her Dragon always, always walked to.
so many pumpkins. so many choices. such a beautiful day to lounge among the gourds.
Bunny finally picked a very pretty one. she held it and shook it and talked to it. yes, it was the perfect pumpkin for her. {pssst. it matches her eyes.}
with that accomplished, it was time to play "Find Bunny" among the mums.

then it was off to go shopping for the things Bunny needed. Target was having a sale and that's where PBofJ took Beach Bunny. they even used a shopping cart to push along in front of them. they bought toilet paper and a new set of sheets for Bunny's bed and a shower curtain.
Bunny picked out one that would serve two purposes. one is to keep the water off the floor and two, to further Bunny's education with regards to geography. Bunny loves maps and, well, who can go wrong with a map of the world? not Bunny. shower, get clean, keep the water off the floor, and get smarter. it is win-win.

and there was a Halloweenie sale. Bunny loves sales. and it has been a long, long time since Bunny bought herself something she does NOT need. she bought herself jack o'lantern slipper socks to keep her little feet warm AND she spent $4.99 {a cheap way of saying $5} for a Wallace and Gromit studio DVD that has 6 stories in it featuring her favorite movie start, Shaun the Sheep! that's right. that adorable fluffy actor who won the hearts of millions in the Wallace and Gromit films. this is a downright scary collection of stories featuring Shaun called, "Little Sheep of Horrors."
so Bunny is going to do some embroidery to make the day not a total waste and to prove her value to the world at large, and then she is going to roast some pumpkins seeds, take her new Advil, wrap her hands in hot socks she has microwaved, and then put on Shaun the Sheep.

whooo hoooo. Bunny really knows how to have a good time. it is those wild Bunny's you had to watch out for.

Bunny had such a great day with her daughter, her vibrant and lovely PBof J. and yes, all through the day Bunny thought of her handsome, lovely Dragon. but she did not cry. her smile may have been wistful and wishful for him to have gotten to be with her, but she had a good time today.

sometimes a Bunny just needs the chance to leave the apartment and be outside, to get to talk face-to-face with someone to feel like maybe she will survive this. sometimes all a Bunny needs is to breathe some fresh fall air and pick out a pumpkin.

Monday, October 4, 2010

blessed are those who mourn

i have insomnia again. for about 3 or 4 months there i was doing okay. but i am back to not falling asleep again. i am not staying asleep. i am tired. i long for him. i wish he had not had to go.

i talk to him. i kiss his picture each night before i lay in the dark with eyes wide open.
C.S. Lewis wrote, "We were promised sufferings. They were part of the program. We were even told, 'Blessed are they that mourn.' " the rest of that is, "for they shall be comforted." i do not know when i will ever feel comforted. i simply do not know. i relate much better to this that he wrote, "No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear."
i get down and i try to work it off. i try to play music so that their "charms can soothe my savage breast." but all my very human doubts and fears snicker at me. they outright laugh. they rise like smoke and i take it all in with every breath. i have seen the ads for that new movie, "Hereafter." my daughter is putting her foot down and forbidding me to see it. and she is right to do so. it messes me up, just the trailer. i so want to know that i will get to be with him in joy and light. what i am so afraid of is that my life is reflective of the punishment that awaits me. i am afraid my forever will be spent working rather than being at peace with him, holding hands with him, just getting to be with him again.

i have this lonely vision of my hereafter and i do not get to be with my Dragon. i am in the middle of a wasteland where all the color is washed away into monochromatic hues of grey. i am seated at a frame only its a loom rather than a quilt frame and i am weaving the cloth of my life to show God, to try and persuade Him that there was something there of value. but as i weave i cry because i cannot find anything worth showing Him. i keep working and searching through the remnants of my life to see if there is one thing i can show God to say, "here. see this? is this enough so that i may ask to be with my Dragon?" and all God can do is sadly turn away from me shaking his weary head at another of His children who failed. all i can hear Him say is, "not enough color. you just didn't use enough color."

"Blessed are those who mourn....." i mourn. tonight, especially so.