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heading toward winter



I've had a few blue days. I hate the wind howling around the house and the rain smashing against the windows when I am alone. Just a couple of days of that and I can feel blue. I can tell now that winter with it's short grey days is coming and do not look forward to that with joy. But I have warm clothes and a roof over my head, enough food in the freezer so I don't have to shop in the bad weather and no-one but me to worry about so I should feel happy with that.


My daughter and family were coming this week for a few days but somehow our wires got crossed and now they are not. I love to have them here but as a spur of the moment decision it was really bad timing. I get the three little ones again for three days from tomorrow and would have been pushed to find room for all anyway. I love visitors but not all at once. I was also thinking about going down to them just for a few days but something else has come up, a funeral to go to, a market day to help with, little things that fill my life.


I had my preaching day today. It is all three services so 8am, 9.30am and 6pm. Not large attendences as our churchyard is a mess, the old hall having been pulled down last week so a lot of the older folk didn't come for fear there wouldn't be parking for them. I am happier when the church isn't full and feel more confident when I am preaching to people I know so it was fine. I always think I write things I need to confirm in my mind so for me a sermon is much like a blog and as I preached on widows which struck a note with those who were also widows and we all learned together. We widows can still be of service to our community and find plenty to keep us busy.


The first week of the school holidays was mostly fine but with much colder weather predicted for this week. There has been the first light snow on the Snowy Mountians and as the winds were blowing from that direction there was a distinct chill in the air. I know compared to the winters most of you have ours are laughable but our open plan houses are hard to heat and a chill in the air is a chill in the air wherever you are. So time for the dressing gowns and slippers to come out and the summer clothes to go away in favour of warmer clothes. Bah Humbug!!!


I am learning to have regrets but not punish myself for the mistakes I make. I did communion in hospital for a lady who thinks of herself as an old friend of mine. I don't know if it was the painkillers she was on but she was quite strident and argumentative when I took the communion to her. I still went through the motions but was unhappy with what was happening. Maybe I need to check things out with the staff before I do that again. It is all a learning curve dealing with people and their personalities. When you deal with older folk in a hospital setting you have to take into account reaction to medication and the possibility of dementia clouding a mind as a part of the equation. Help! I need more training before I move forward!


It looks like I will be going to a couple of funerals this coming week. One on Wednesday afternoon so I will do chat, give the two boys their lunch and then get dressed for the funeral so that I am ready when Pam comes back to get them. The 24th of April is Tori's birthday, she will be twelve so she and a girlfriend and Pam are going out for a special lunch while the boys stay here with me. Twelve already, oh my! She is already giving me a peck on the cheek instead of a hug so showing signs of moving into those teenage years with a year yet to go!


Life moves forward but slowly. Not too many changes for me to cope with. I am trying to cultivate an attitude of gratitude, to be grateful for a letter in the post, an email in my inbox, a phone call from a friend. On the days when none of those happen I try to be glad of the solitude, that I am no longer wrung out by trying to meet someone else's care needs. But if it would bring my dear Ray back to me I would go through it all again for sure.


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Well Sue,


I am so proud of you surviving in life like you are and having your daughter and the kids to keep you company (as if you needed it) some of the time. You know my mom was like you in some ways after my dad passed. She kept busy dong little things around the house and going to the fishing hole not far from our house.


Keep going with your sermons and warming the hearts of many people there and before you know it winter will be gone and spring and summer here again. It only takes 90 days for a change in climates plus you all there got so much to see and do year round.


When I was there for my R&R after the operation I couldn't walk very far so the doctor arranged for me to go by car with a driver. I sure wanted to drive myself but I couldn't drive on the left side of the road that scares the S**t out of me!


I did enjoy the Aboriginal people, they thought I was one of them! I just got sick eating their food but they didn't know plus my doctor was with me all the time. I'm a traveling man and I sure wanted my wife to see the country as she loves animals. Maybe one day??

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Sue, I am not sure exactly how to say this, so I hope it does not offend you. I don't really think you would bring Ray back if you could in the condition he was in and what he went thru at the end. Maybe you would like the caretaking again, but just remember what you preach about. He is in a better place now without pain and suffering. Rejoice that he is well now and waits you. Believe what you preach. Hold on to that.


As much as I missed my late wife when she left me at far too young an age, I would not bring her back to endure the suffering she went thru.

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George you are so right, I would not want Ray back to go on suffering. I just feel as if half of me died with him. I am trying to put a bandage over what some days seems like a gaping wound and other days is manageable. It is hard to go on alone after 44 years. I some days just do not know how I will get through the day. Ray always had my back, we did not agree on everything but in the end it was always him and me against the world and that is what I so miss.


I am also glad for the friends I have here and the few I have left in the real world. I hope some of my old friends will eventually come back or I will stop needing them. Life goes on, my faith keeps me going and as you say I have to live what I preach.



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Sue the people in your congregation as well as those you minister to elsewhere are so lucky to have you. I'm sure they are especially grateful to see someone stand up and stay strong with your faith in God when you have been through so much. Keep up the good work Sue.



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Sue :


I hope & pray to have similar kind of love for my hubby. My love I feel so conditional unlike I have for our son, nothing compares to yours. Ray & you were fortunate to have each other for so many years & now I am sure you see glimpse of him in your children & grandchildren.



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Sue: I do know for our wonderful neighbor Gloria it took years for her to find her way after loosing Brian and she was working full time. Today I watched as her friend re-top-soiled all her gardens. She loves her yard and it was so special to see her plans for prepping her special areas. A new season. Brian had planted her a Flowering Crab for their 25th anniversary. She lost that in the blizzard. I was so afraid that would set her back. But we talked a long time and while upset, she found some peace.


Entering a tough season for you. Winter was always hunker down, soups, stews, sweaters, some special days on the patio. And now it is new for you. But also time to consider some new projects, travel and down time for you - catch up on your reading, do some new recipes in the kitchen. Please do keep us up to date on the weather and your adventures. Debbie

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Sue you are heading into winter---- and we cant seem to get out of winter over here in ND... i still have 80 percent snow all over and the temp barley climbs to mid 30's with a cold, cold wind... we are always very windy... but this weather is crazy.... normally the farmers are half done with planting , not so this year, they wont be started for about 2 more weeks at least... so if our winter just decides to stay here in ND than we can winter together LOL..... sounds like having those grandkids is really good for you and them...your right things move forward... slow... but forward...

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I am so glad that we are not just beginning winter. I can't even stand the thought of it. We are still having some cold days, and it did snow a bit on Saturday, but it didn't stick. I'm sure it is going to be a tough time for you. Just the fact that there is less light, is depressing. You are so used to taking care of others, now maybe you can take care of yourself a little. My prayers are with you, and I know you are one tough lady. Keep us updated on how you deal with everything. Joni

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Sue, sometimes people who believe themselves to be old friends of ours are hateful because they wonder why we aren't doing more for them, since they ARE such good old friends. I have had that happen to me before and since I was not in your position (giving communion to someone in need) I finally told her we were not actually friends, I had just politely answered her email, like I did everyone else who wrote to me. Ha, that shut her up.

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