22 weeks without the love of my life.
22 weeks without the one to make me giggle.
22 weeks without the one who held me when I was afraid.
seems like a lifetime. yet seems like only yesterday.
how can it be?
how is it that time seems to hold so little meaning for me anymore. a clock means nothing more than a tick tock - an awareness of moments alone.
I know that some people are thinking that I should "get over it" or "move on". but when you have lost so much of yourself in another person, it's not so easy to do as others think you should.
I breathe in and I breathe out. I get thru each day, each evening, and each night. one breath at time! God holds me and God stays right by my side.
there are times of laughter. times of tears. times to just remember.
there are even times when I cry so hard that I lose my breath, and for a few minutes, I lose my focus.
but even in the hardest moments of this life of grief - God is with me. He holds me.
and regardless of what anyone says or thinks - I am ok. God has given me the permission to grieve, to miss my Sweetheart, to love him still.
little by little I am learning to live again ... only this time, to live alone.
I thank God for my children and my grandchildren.
I thank God for family and friends who call, or text, or send me a love package from Missouri!
I thank God even for those who have pulled away since Rick's death - for you have made it easier for me to lean on Jesus.
I thank God for my "new" family - the grievers. they have accepted me - just as I am. they put no conditions on me, they give me no time limit for my grief. they understand on a level that most of those in my life do not. they cry with me, make me smile again. they pray for me, and give me opportunity to pray with them. we are a family - with a bond that none of us wanted, and yet we each have now.
I was at the just-a-buck store the other day, and a magnet caught my eye. anyone who knows me, knows that I am patriotic so much so that if you cut me I will bleed red, white, and blue.
well, this magnet has a picture of our Flag, and the word "FREEDOM" written under the flag. Then, these words --
"Freedom. It's refusing to recognize boundaries that others set.
It's feeling free to explore your options, all of them, without worrying about the outcome.
It's taking risks, saying yes.
Freedom is the ultimate potential.
Use it, enjoy it, savor it."
now those may be simple words, and I am sure they were not words written for a grieving widow. except - on that day, and every day since, those are extraordinary words. and written exactly for a grieving widow - me.
I never wanted to be "free" from my husband. with him I knew a freedom that I had never known before him.
but I want to know freedom now.
freedom from the constraints that other people try to put on me. freedom from the fears and worries that I am not up to the standards of those around me, who do not understand the depth of love and grief that I am experiencing.
freedom from the life that is not lived.
freedom to cry or to laugh ...
freedom to remember ...
freedom to stretch beyond what I have been ...
freedom to reach for what is still here for me.
freedom to love my husband, without others feeling a strange threatening.
freedom to miss my husband.
There are those around me who have a compassion that words cannot describe. their hugs say more to me than any word could ever say.
I had to go to the home office of the funeral home that handled Rick's funeral. (I could not bear to enter the funeral home where he had been.) I needed to make a payment on the funeral. the man who met me and talked with me was the same man who had come that fateful day and took my Rick away.
I told him on that day that I did not like him. I would never like him. he looked at me with sad eyes, and asked "Why?" ... my answer - "because you are here to take him away from me." His arms encircled me that day and just held me as I cried. a grieving widow.
and this week, on the day when I had to make a payment, he received the check in one hand, and put his arm around me with the other. held me a moment. let me go. I got to my car in the parking lot, sat down and had a meltdown. I cried. cried. cried. it was not like the cry of a 22 week old widow. it was like the cry of a this moment widow. when the tears had calmed down, I looked up and I saw him standing at the door - watching me. not in a gawking way, but with compassion - just to make sure I was ok. it was tender, and I appreciate his care.
there are others, too, who are free to me with their hugs. I so need that right now. rick was my HUG. and I miss him.
Whether we want it to or not ... life goes on. And to be completely honest - there are times every day that i just want life to stop and the world to be still. My heart is broken, my life is changed. Enough!!! I just want to snuggle in my oversized chair with my T-shirt quilt and cry Rick's name ...
Rick - i love you and i miss you so much!!!
There are moments that i allow myself to do just that. But i will not allow myself to do it for all the time. That is not what God would have me do. It is not what Rick would have me do. So, i breathe in and i breathe out ... and i wipe the tears away, find some memory that makes me smile ... and i get up to go on ...
It's been almost a month since i last wrote here. So, i play catch up again ...
*I had a check up with my doctor in Sulphur Springs. Everything is basically "OK". He said that he believes that i have mild depression and moderate anxiety - both of which are completely normal for all that i have been thru this year, and still going thru.
He prescribed a better balance of *rest *sleep *relaxing *mild activity - like using the gazelle several times a week *eating if i am hungry *and Cymbalta if i need it.
Joshua and his brother in law (my other son), Alva, came down the 13th of August. Dessie had to work that Friday, so they brought the kids with them. We laughed and teased and joked. He pulled all the rest of Rick's stuff out of the storage building and loaded it onto the trailer to take home.
I had a meltdown Friday morning. I was fixing breakfast for everyone and just got overwhelmed. *My kids had not been together since Rick died. *Georgia, the dog, was right under my feet, making me afraid that I was going to fall again. *Georgia was not playing nice with Joshua and the kids all going in and out. I think she was just over-stimulated and didn't know how to deal with so much at one time. *Some of those in the family were not happy with me for having made the decision to go home with Joshua. Even tho i had been down there for a month already. *One of my granddaughters was not pleased with me at all for telling her to come fix a plate - because it was making her miss her movie.
I just melted. Shaking uncontrollably. Crying. Near a panic. Telling myself all the time that everything was ok - just breathe. But the anxiety and stress on my body was kicking big time
Joshua cam in the kitchen, heard and saw what was going on. He told everyone to leave. Everyone but Shell did. Joshua stood leaning on the sink - just like his daddy used to do - and he pulled me to him. He pressed my head onto his shoulder, and shushed me gently. Told em that everything was going to be "ok". I let him. I just stood there crying and I let my baby boy comfort me, his momma. I let him be to me what I had been to him so many times thru his growing up years.
Later that day Joshua and Alva took me to town. We shopped a little at Walmart, I laughed at the "boys". Then, they took me to eat at Long John Silvers. Just laughed and talked and had a good lunch together. I so needed that time!
On Saturday that week I cooked ... Made 2 cakes, cowboy enchiladas and a massive amount of tea! Family and friends came in to visit with Joshua. Many stayed a long time. It was a day of laughter and tears and so many stories! LOL
Saturday evening, BJ and Jacki came down, Aaron and his girls came up, and Jay came over. OH MY! The stories (mostly exaggerated) were told, laughed over, and probably not very much believed. LOL. We ate and we ate ... stuffed to the point of being miserable. So much fun! I love my kids so much! Every one of them!!!
Sunday morning we left Sulphur Springs going to Graham. Made good time, especially for pulling a trailer loaded with stuff!
Got to Joshua and Dessie's and unloaded the truck. Decided to leave the trailer for another day.
A trip into town for groceries for the coming week. Laughter ... so much laughter!
My first week of everyone being gone during the day was spent resting, relaxing, doing a little laundry, putting dishes into the dishwasher, helping with cooking supper.
I put my scrapbook together - just a small overall picture of Rick and me, our life together. I cried over some of the pictures, and smiled over them all. I am so thankful for the years and the time we had together.
Joshua came in August 25 and said - Momma, i have found you a car! He began describing it to me, and i asked if they wanted to go with me to look at it. Joshua and i drove around in it for a few blocks - i loved it!
A 1991 Dodge Shadow convertible. Rick had wanted a convertible for the last 15 years, and especially for the last year. We had planned to buy one this summer. Candy apple red. Rick's favorite motorcycle and car color. There was a CD in the visor - and when i took it out, i had to smile. A praise and worship CD with one of Rick's favorite songs on it. How perfect!
The average retail on this car is around $3500. But this one was a total God-thing. Joshua offered the guy $800 and he said YES!!!!! I paid him! My first car! Rick had bought every car i had ever had - since i was 18 years old. This was the first car i had ever bought alone. But i feel Rick so strongly in this car!!!!! I just know he is laughing with joy - blessing me in it!!!!
The car has not been abused, but has been neglected. When we got it home, Joshua checked it out. Found a few minor things that needed fixed -
- windshield wipers replaced
- horn fixed to blow
- brakelight bulb replaced
- stabilizer bar on the back replacedf
- a good cleaning inside and out
- snaps put back on the "boot" for the convertible
- new floor mats
- new rearview mirror
- new lock for the trunk
- Joshua put Lucas oil in just about everything - lol
- he and i decided to go with a new set of tires - just not sure how old the ones on it were
- a tune up needed
Insurance has been paid for 6 months. Inspection passed. Tax, title, and license. All legal to drive now!
Joshua and i were coming back from taking Shell's best friend home - and Joshua said, "Momma, Daddy would have gladly paid the $800 for it! No matter what it needed. He would never have questioned or argued about what to do. Daddy would have drove it with so much joy!"
I feel held by Rick when i ride in it, or drive it.
Thank you God for this little car. I wanted a car of my own to get around in, but You gave me so much more! You blessed me ... but You blessed me INDEED!!!!! Thank you!!!!! I LOVE YOU GOD!!!!!
35 years ago I became Mrs. Ricky Lee McCoy.
Rick was never much on holidays. Always felt like they were way too commercialized. Always said that we should get back to the basics of being thankful and loving one another every day - not just on holidays.
But for OUR day ... our wedding anniversary, he always made a big thing out of it, for me. He has taken off work for the day ... he even took off a whole week once as a surprise to me. He took me to the zoo one year and we were just kids for the day - so much fun, we laughed until we hurt! He drove me up thru the mountains of Oklahoma and Arkansas one year, and thru the mountains of Oregon another year, thru the mountains of Idaho yet another year. We have stayed at home and just curled up and snuggled together watching movies. Spent the day one year celebrating with the RV park that we were staying in, had a big picnic. A long motorcycle ride one year. A car drive the next. A trip to the lake on occasion. He took me to many museums on our day. There were times that we didn't have the money to go anywhere, and he would cook me a wonderful meal. One year, we didn't have the money for even that - it was a cold bologna sandwich, but made with hands of love and lots of laughter. Our favorite place to go eat on this day of ours was to Red Lobster - and as many years as possible, that is where we were found.
Last year, our last year - he took me to a Red Lobster and a Sweet Frog Yogurt Shop. Bought me a precious stuffed frog at the Yogurt Shop. We laughed - but I was, and am, so proud of that silly frog.
It never was about where we went, or even what we did. He has gotten me roses ... and jewelry ... taken me out to eat ... seen a movie. But whatever we did or didn't do, wherever we went, or didn't go - it was always about him making a "big to do" over the day - OUR day. Sometimes there were gifts, sometimes cards. And then, one year - he hid post it notes all over the house, and I found the last of them a week or so later! (Still have them, and they are even more precious to me.)
I miss him ... always, but I miss him today. I miss wondering what he would think of to do ... wondering what surprise waited for me in the next moment. I miss his kisses ... his hugs ... I miss him tickling me until I begged him to stop. I miss laying my head on his chest and listening to him breathe, feeling his heart beat against my face. I miss the way he smelled - that unique smell that was all Ricky Lee McCoy. I miss reaching up and touching his face - saying, "Ricky Lee, do you know how fine you are to me?" And I miss hearing his voice saying back to me - "And you to me!"
I am not sure if I will ever be able to watch Rob Roy again ... that was OUR movie. Our movie that we watched on OUR day - ever year since it came out. I don't remember one anniversary since it came out that we did not watch it.
O Rick, my Sweetheart, my Soul-mate, the love of my life, my heart. I miss you today. I missed you yesterday. And I will miss you tomorrow. But today ... oh today ... I miss you!!!!!
I love you.
Thank you Rick for all the years that you gave to me ... for all the memories ... for all the lov you held me with. I LOVE YOU.
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY Sweetheart. I love you.
--your woman, your wife ... honored and humbled ...
Meg ... Mrs. Rick McCoy
So why "Scattered Feathers" ? ? ?
You can read it here