My Rule for Life

I would rather live my life as if there is a God, and die to find out there isn't, than live my life as if there isn't, and die to find out there is.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Strictly A Personal Post

This post is strictly a personal post about me and what's been going on in my life. If you are looking for some spicy Conservative Outrage dialogue  you may as well clik out now.

It was pointed out to me by a  friend and fellow blogger I had been a little quiet lately. After a little self critic I came to the same conclusion.  I have also been told I was delusional by a certified therapist.  With these three opinions in mind I thought about it for a while and came up with this diagnosis.  Depression.  OK, so I admit it I must have been depressed.  I admit it I am human, perhaps Neanderthal perhaps Cro-Magnon, but human.

As most of you know my lovely wife of 32 years passed away after a valiant fight against lung cancer March of 2009.  I made it through the summer and into the fall with the help of friends and family both here and online.  I am so grateful to all of them.  I guess it started shortly before her birthday which was November 30.  Then the hurdle of Thanksgiving  was cleared thanks to the world's largest having me work an 8 hour shift during the day.  Christmas became the problem as it was HER holiday.  We built a new house 9 years ago with 14 foot Cathedral ceilings in it.  Several years ago she bought a 9.5 foot tall Christmas tree.  We had 12 inch ornaments we (I) hung from the ceiling and 4 foot tall script letters, ie; NOEL, on the roof.  It was HER holiday.  It suddenly became my holiday.  I withdrew.  I didn't want to play anymore.  I put up our Nativity Scene, in a different place, didn't put up a Christmas tree after many people told me I should and only the week before Christmas sent out Christmas cards.  I didn't even post to my fellow bloggers.  I was in a word, bummed out.

Just before Christmas my daughter's church was re-dedicated as they had built a large addition to it. At that re-dedication was a lady I'll call Sue who had lost her husband in 2007.  I knew her from previous church functions at my daughters church.  Neither of us are members.  After the service and some cake and ice cream she asked how I was doing.  Ok, different but ok.  She invited me to a grief service at her church that Sunday night.  Very, very reluctantly I agreed to go.  I was very uncomfortable with the idea of me being somewhere with another woman and not my wife.  I know it's church grief service but I just didn't feel right.  I went.  Sue called a couple days later to ask what I thought about it and did it help with Christmas coming on.  I was polite and tactful and said thank you etc, etc, etc.  The only thing I got out of it was a lady who had failed to put up a Christmas tree for 4 years after her husband passed away. Sue called several times before Christmas and after Christmas.  Duh, after a couple of calls I realized she was calling me for her own grief and not for me. On one call I switched positions and asked to tell me some good things about her husband.  She named a few and shortly the conversation was over.

Change came over me then and there.  I started thinking about my Gretchen and good things she had done.  She was a nurse for 32 years.  She worked as a nurse's aid while going to college and obtaining her degree.  She was a hands on nurse. She absolutely despised the bureaucratic paper work that was piled on nurses over the last 30 years.  During her 32 years she worked in the Intensive Care Unit, the Emergency Room, the Coronary Care Unit and the Orthopedic Unit.  Later as our children grew was a home health nurse and supervisor.  She saw patients in there homes and supervised nurses and aids that took care of patients in their homes.

Thirty-two years of taking care of the sick, the injured, and the dying.  Thirty-two years! Oh did I mention actually saving my life one night and rushing me to the hospital for emergency surgery or the countless boobers on the neighborhood kids.  The calls from other relatives asking what to do in medical situations that they didn't want to bother their doctor with.  Always, always thinking of someone else and putting their care first.

While shopping one night at the world's largest retailer she stopped and bought some sugar free bubble gum.  ???  She just looked at me and said "a patient".  One year several days before Christmas she came home and began hemming and hawing about money.  Finally she said to me, Do we have some extra Christmas money?  This was not her style.  What do you want I asked.  She told me of a patient who was lacking funds and didn't even have a tree to put up let alone money to by the grandkids something.  Needless to say she got what she wanted. Later I asked her how the patient accepted the gift.  Oh, she would never accept money from me I just put it in an envelope and acted like it was in the mail when I went to see her, she said.

After all this who better to be called to Heaven than her.  After years of nursing and thousands of patients made well, who better?  She deserves to be with God, she deserves not to have to worry about the hassles of this earthly world.  She has done her job and God has granted her the peace and joy of Heaven. If there are boobers in Heaven I am sure she will be there taking care of them an Angel taking care of Angels.

I face a new year of challenges without my partner of 32 years.  I will face this new year of challenges with family and friends knowing she will be with me guiding me and smiling as I bumble around until I get it right or.....at least the way she thinks it should be. I'll face this new year knowing God has an angel that if anybody has a boober he has one damn good nurse to take care of it!

I told you it was personal.

Shalom,
Pops


8 comments:

Subvet said...

Thanks Pops, you're in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Pops,
Your post has really touched me. In Sept of 2008, my mother was diagnosed with early stages of Alzheimer's. Granted, she's on medication, but the days that are off days for us are rough. Recently it came to me that depression was becoming more of a reality to me, albeit not diagnosed by a doctor or therapist. Like yourself, I'm sure that some days are better than others and we will get through it.

Thanks for sharing.
Godspeed.

Most Rev. Gregori said...

Nothing wrong with a personal post, it is kinda like confession in that it helps clear ones mind and soothe the soul.

Believe it or not, even I get periods of depression especially around Christmas time when I think back to when my sons were all little and all home together. Now that they are grown, it is rare that I get to see them all together at Christmas.

I guess this is what is meant by "Love Hurts."

God Bless, my friend.

MightyMom said...

glad to see you posting again!

sounds like you're ready for the New Year!

ABNPOPPA said...

Thanks to all who commented.

Subvet, your prayers are always meaningful to me as we have somewhat marched the same march.

Abouna, With all due respect, Next time I get personal I will start it off with something like, Forgive me Father. That should give you enough warning to prepare yourself for my confession. I know about those kids. I was so near having all 3 home,darn!

MM. Thanks, babe, your the greatest!

Anonymous,
My heart goes out to you and your family. I know your situation and so much joy has been in your heart this last couple of months and now some sadness. You have been a mainstay for me and perhaps I can be for you. I believe you have my email address and anytime you feel the need. Fire away.

I will keep your mom and you and your family in my prayers.

G-d Bless,

Pops
PS Would one of you mind telling me when I make a mistake. I found 3 in this while re-reading it. I am not a critic of myself, my lovely wife passed away in 2009, and I had a capital "S" on the end of a word. You guys are suppose to be my friends! LOL

AirmanMom said...

pops...how blessed you are to have had such an angel in your life. This post is a beautiful tribute, dedicated to a beautiful lady.
I wish you a new year filled with happy memories...old and new!
~AM

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Lutheran Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Destruction of the embryo in the mother's womb is a violation of the right to live which God has bestowed upon this nascent life. To raise the question whether we are here concerned already with a human being or not is merely to confuse the issue. The simple fact is that God certainly intended to create a human being and that this nascent human being has been deliberately deprived of his life. And that is nothing but murder.

Read more about this famous Lutheran Pastor at:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dietrich_Bonhoeffer