Today is January 13, 2017. Friday the 13th of all things. But I’m being positive. Yesterday I was having what I call a “low ebb day.” I forced myself to the gym for a work out where my routine is repetitions with weight machines for upper and lower body, then 15 minutes on a treadmill and 15 on a stationary bike. This covers about an hour and a half. My spirits were lifted a bit when a lady ask me if I could show her how to adjust and use one of the leg machines. I felt needed. And it always feels good to help someone anywhere, anytime. And since I’ve been a gym rat for over 30 years and health magazine reader, I could offer a few tips that brought both the lady and me a smile.
The gym I go to is Planet Fitness which has the most reasonable rates in gym life creation, and it is also colorful with its purple and yellow decor from walls to exercise equipment. They also have water massage beds, massage chairs, and tanning beds, nice locker room and showers.
So what has this got to do with “Becoming a Widow? or Widower?” (I don’t want to leave the men out who are living with grief and lonliness.)
Well, although I experience days when I feel that concrete is running through my veins, and I don’t want to move outside the doors of the house, and my life and being seems to have lost all its personal meaning with the death of my spouse, I’M STILL HERE ON EARTH, like it or not. If the good Lord has me here, sometimes against my will, for some plan He/She has for me in the big picture of creation, then I might as well accept the fact that on days I really don’t want to, I have to talk my way out of the heaviness that I get caught in. I have to take care of myself, my mind, body, and spirit. So exercise is VERY important, and proper foods, and positive input to the mind and spirit.
I talk often with God, and to my late husband David and son Patrick, who watch from where ever their spirits exist in this universe. I have to call on them to give me the strength to do whatever it is I need to do to keep on keeping on in the here and now. I even write letters to them! And because they love me, I can tell them, including God, how angry I am that I’m here without them. They understand, I’m sure. But somewhere in all the feeling of being weighted down as though concrete is in my veins, and anger that my spouse and son are gone, after seeking help from ‘above’, little by little, like yesterday, I find myself pulling out of my “heavy” place.
Yesterday I also noticed on facebook that it was an acquaintance’s 74th birthday. Although he, too, carries the weight of being widowed, he is a smiling face and cheerful spirit to all who know him. He and I also attend karaoke singing in our area. So I gave him a phone call to personally say, “Happy Birthday.” I believe a voice is better than just typed words on FB!
Later in the evening, although the gym workout still didn’t have me running on all high emotional cylinders, I attended the evenings karaoke venue where I knew this acquaintance would be. I had made a plan earlier in the day with my karaoke facilitator friend to do something fun and lighthearted to celebrate Ed’s birthday. Although I’m 62 years old, (and the older I get I’m less worrisome about some things, ) I dressed up in a costume with a “big butt”, “big boobs” , leopard leotards, and gold high heels, and with a song and dance, I entertained birthday boy Ed, who couldn’t keep the smile from his face, while the audience laughed.
Then and there, my heavy day suddenly disappeared. I was with acquaintances in a room where others like Ed and I were widows and widowers, and even divorcees who have their own grief and lonliness. Of course “couples” were there, which often reminds us “singles” that we were once “two.” When the show I performed was done, I laughed and felt good that I had the ability to make others laugh, and I felt especially good when others told me I had done a good job, and how fun it was.
And this morning I’m still smiling even though my house is quiet except for the sound of my fingers on the keyboard of this computer.
With my spouse and oldest of 2 sons not with me in the physical, and life being nothing for me as I had imagined it would be (see my blog post: If you want to make God laugh), I know I have to continually seek and strive to move beyond my own “low ebb days” like the beginning of yesterday to be able to stretch myself to get to the gym for my own personal health and well being, and to bring help, smiles and laughter to others with the reward being for myself. This is important as I continue building on the belief that my life still has purpose, no matter how simple my purpose may be if only for just a moment, few minutes, or the balance of my lifetime for strangers, acquaintances, friends, cousins, or my one and only child left in my life.
God isn’t finished with me yet.
The prayer I wrote for today:
“Father, I am on earth for only as long as your plan for me entails. The journey is one where although I forget to stay steadfast in following your guidance, I know that for your plan for me in the big picture of your creation, you will never fail to bring me back to where you want and need me to be. I am protected because I exist here and now and until my earth journey is complete, to contribute, toward your purpose, no matter how small or large that contribution is at any given time. Amen”
Locate my books: Heart of a Hawk: One family’s sacrifice & journey toward healing AND Surviving the Folded Flag: Parents of war share stories of coping, courage, and faith at www.militaryfamilybooks.com or Amazon.com
Love’s Return @ Amazon.com