And so a year has come and gone since Bill died. I can't believe how fast it's been, in spite of some days feeling like they lasted a year.
Things needing to be done....paperwork to be signed, trip to the health department for death certificate, turning in the tag and cancelling insurance on Bill's truck, picking up his ashes and sending some to family and friends to be scattered, scattering some here and "Bill's Big Bang" send off.
Unexpected problems....the well going down, the loss of D*O*G just three months after Bill and my jeep breaking down once again.
And all the "firsts" without Bill....Thanksgiving, his birthday, Christmas,New Years,Valentine's Day, our anniversary, Easter, my birthday, Fourth of July and Halloween.
I'm so proud of the dogs. They have adjusted very well to being left alone without Mommy or Daddy being here for hours at a time. After getting Dixie, Bill would not hear of leaving them home alone for even an hour. I knew they would work it out and be okay, but he wasn't buying it.
On a bright note, I cherish the love and support that I've received from my "ATP family". It gets lonely here in the woods off the beaten path, but I know friends are just a mouse click away. Meeting purpleinopp recently was a definate high point and I look foreward to many more happy visits.
And so the original journey is over as is the first year journey, and I look foreward to the new journey as I embark on it. Things/yard may look bleak right now with most plants in the greenhouse, but I know that come spring things will come alive and bloom again. And once more I want to thank my ATP family for traveling this road with me. I luv all ya'll.
It occured to me today as I gave the dogs their heartworm prevention that it's just 20 short days since Bill was diagnosed with cancer a year ago. Some days/weeks have gone by so slowly, and yet here it is almost a year already ! I suspect that over the next weeks and months I'll be re-reading my blog to see just where we were on his (our) journey to November 7, 2012....the highs, the lows, the smiles and the tears. I'm thinking that once the bills are paid, I'd like to treat myself to something special to enjoy as I reflect. Perhaps a new hummingbird feeder or two...Bill enjoyed watching them almost as much as I do....a windchime. Not the the light tinkling ones, but a deep pitched resonating one. Hearing a windchime always brings a smile to my face. A new spinner ?? They are so cool...first time I saw one I was visiting my daughter. We had gone to the mall where they had some on display.She saw the smile on my face and sent me one for Christmas (or was it birthday?)....purple with a hummer in the middle. :-)))) An area in the yard, perhaps, just for the wildflowers/weeds that pop up and bloom just in time to get mowed, but I sold the mantis. While Bill was sick, the yard chores didn't get done....grass got high, but that was OK as I enjoyed seeing the wildflowers that in another time I did not get to enjoy. My sanity, when I could take a break, was being able to take photos, get IDs and add to the DB when the "beast" didn't show me "the blue screen of death". Funny...that somehow seems appropriate now. I'll figure it out. Hopefully, additions to my blog after November 7, 2013 and February 8, 2014, when D*O*G died will be happy ones. As always...one day at a time and always looking for that silver lining. Today it's all ya'll, who, with love and understanding let me reflect and send cyber hugs my way. (((())))
Well it's a bit over the half way mark to a year since Bill died...71/2 months. For those of you familier with my sense of humor, you know it may seem a bit "odd" or "fractured", but I chalk it up to always looking for the silver lining in the cloud. That being said...my friend Jackie forewarded a cartoon to me that she had received. Three creepy looking guys are in an office. One is sitting at the desk talking on the phone. In the "talkie balloon" it says, "I realize we all grieve in our own way,Ma'am, but the creamatorium staff did not appreciate the fireworks you put in your late husbands pockets." LOL Which brings us to Bill's Big Bang :-))) Yesterday, June22,2013, I invited a few friends over for food, libation and farewells. I printed out the cartoon and taped a picture of Bill under it...wrote when the picture was taken (May 2012), his birth date and date of death. Also RIP...out with a bang :-)). Some of his ashes went to Pa., Mass., and south Fl. Some are saved for when Alex gets out..he has plans. Bill's friend, Richard also wanted some. Now Richard deceided he was going to shoot some out of a small cannon! We wandered out back to the makeshift shooting range to spread the remaining ashes since Bill's favorite thing to talk about was guns.
Richard was leary of "firing" him off there because it"s been so dry. Back to the yard near a hose (just in case) he set up. Now he didn't bring the cannon, but instead a tube like the pros use to set off fireworks. He brought 4 loads of ashes etc. 3 were set off then...fire from the fuse, smoke, whoosh and bang,bang,bang...Bill was launched to much cheering and whoohoos. The fourth and largest load was saved until it got darker. And as twilight settled in, fire, smoke, woosh,bang,bang and the sky was lit up with a multi colored starburst. Bill would have so enjoyed his Big Bang...it was totally right up his alley. We all had fun...or should I say a blast?!? Smiles all around. RIP Bill..you have been launched.
Sat. the 9th was day 120 after I signed the paperwork for Bill to be cremated, so I called the funeral home to arrange to pick him up. Was told Monday the 11th. after 11:00 since 8:00 was not doable for me. On the way to town I stopped at the post office for stamps and mail....there was a sympathy card from my vet about D*O*G. Got to the funeral home about 11:30 I guess. Thank goodness the 10:00 funeral they had was DONE...no need to wade through mourners this time. The person I saw, toted Bill's ashes out to my jeep...their policy in case something happened it would be on them not me. I was a little surprised that they didn't ask for ID. After all I COULD have been a jilted ex lover or a snarky ex wife. On the way home I stopped for a pack of smokes (I really have cut down and am working on stopping). All they had in my brand was menthol, which is what Bill smoked....sooo I lit one and said, "Here's to you kid". Once home I called Richard to say I was home with Bill and if he wanted, to come over for a beer. He came and brought homemade "hooch" with. All I can say is I slept VERY well last night...best in months. LOL Was a sad day, but I feel much better now that Bill isn't sitting on a shelf at the funeral home...and thankful that it cost me nothing...otherwise he'd still be there.
After much needed coffee this morning I made a few phone calls, and proceeded to package Bill for three "road trips". He's going fishing in Pa., kyaking in south Florida and whatever his friend does with him in Gloucester,Ma. And he will be well "toasted" in Fl. and Ma....Pa. likely not. He didn't get to travel in life, but now can have some fun. Tomorrow, weather permitting, I will bury some ashes with his beloved Rhodie (Rhodesian Ridgeback) per his request, and sprinkle the other graves in the Memory Garden. Thursday the 14th. Jackie and I plan to go to Social Security so I can apply for the one time death benefit...I'm ready now. Then it will be deceiding on when and what for a celebration of Bill's life. So as always....one day at a time....my azaleas are beautiful and some camelias are still in bloom. Reckon as how even though this is a sad time, life is good.
Today I spent the morning baking brownies and cookies to take with me for my vet and his staff when I picked up D*O*G's ashes. Called about 2:00 to make sure they were there...yes, so off I went.
When I got there the "crew" was excited about homemade goodies and handed me a small burlap tote bag. Asked them to give Dr. Favaloro a thank you hug for me as he was with a client and they were really busy. Once in my jeep I looked in the bag. There was a white tin with black and gray paw prints on it containing D*O*G's ashes, a card with the Rainbow Bridge poem on it. Inside the card was his official certificate of cremation...he was done on Valentines Day. Only fitting, I suppose, for my beloved heart muscle with four legs. Also in the bag was a bookmark with a lovely poem on it as well as a butterfly "ornament" embedded with wildflower seeds to plant in his memory. How cool is that?!? Much more then I expected.
"We may not be together in the way we used to be.We are still connected by a cord no eye can see. So whenever you need to find me we're never far apart. If you look beyond the horizon and listen with your heart."
So as I drove home expecting to be sooo sad and teary eyed, each time I reached over and touched that little tote bag I couldn't help but smile.