getting no chance to talk
I went to visit my daughter and family for a few days. It was a good visit as the sun was shining for a change. I had a hard trip down as I had to stand on the train for the first 90 minutes and got a bad cramp in my left calf, ouchy! But the rest of the trip was good. I almost didn't go as looking after the other grandkids had me feeling very tired but talking to Debbie (Ethyl17) she reminded me how much I love to go visit my daughter and yes, it is always worth going down there.
I had hoped for some time alone with Shirley but that never happened. I know she is busy with all the work she does as a Salvation Army officer but there are things I wanted to say to her that I didn't want her kids to hear or her husband to comment on, just family matters, but she was either working or the family were there. As usual she had a funeral to do, a big one this time as the loved one was one of that last generation of old soldiers from WW2. He was also a sports-mad father and all his long life had been involved in a lot of community organisations and many were there to farewell a good friend.
Although Shirley and I talk on the phone that is not the way to discuss deeper issues. What is on my mind is now about moving and rehousing myself. At the moment I have room for them to come and stay and if I go into housing more suitable to my needs as a widow that will not be so. At present the littlest grandchildren get a lot of fun doing outdoor activities, especially the little boys so I value having a big backyard but as it also goes with an older house that needs a lot of maintaining that is a bit of a problem. I know in a few years time the boys will not need the space to run around in but for now they do so a villa with a patch of lawn is probably not the best accommodation for me.
I also need probably to put my end-of-life wishes on paper as she is my guardian, maybe that is the talk she is not ready to have yet? Having lost one parent I guess she doesn't really want to think about losing another? I know it is early days as we only lost Ray last September but I need to have it settled in my own mind too. I just have to hope the time will come soon when she is ready to have such a discussion.
I do wonder if you have to change the way you approach family matters as a widow? Once the families would come fairly often to see Ray and I because of the thought I suppose that he would not be with us forever but now it is just me it doesn't seem like an issue. I know that is how we felt when Ray's Step-Dad died after a long fight with cancer. Little did we know that we would lose his Mum to a heart attack eleven months later. In a sense we are all living on borrowed time and for that reason should not put off visiting family and friends. Even if that means listening to their problems and getting involved in the solutions. We owe those who nurtured us for our survival and need to remember that.
Had a bit of a laugh this morning when I was talking to Trev on the phone and he told me he had dropped in some papers at 11.30pm last night, using his key to open the back door. He said all he could hear was me snoring, so at least a burglar would know where I was sleeping and be able to avoid that room! Well I was tired from the trip home but honestly I never heard him come in.
Today was Shirley's daughter Naomi's birthday, she turned 9. While I was down on the visit I got her one of the popular bracelets with large ornate beads on it. Of course not the famous jewelled ones but a cheap imitation. She is starting to get interested in jewellery so was pleased with it. The bracelets became part of the market stall I looked after at the Market Day they have in their hall every two months. A Market Day is a good way of getting the community interested in what you are all about as an organisation so they use it for PR as well as as a fundraiser. I can still sell just about anything so those years in Tuppwerware fitted me out with valuable skills I still use.
Now I am home I need to chase up the old tradesman who was to put a new screen door on the back door for me and find out when that is going to happen. It seems as if the maintenance is never ending here but I think that is the same for all owners of older houses. When we were young we took it for granted that some weekends had to be set aside for house maintenance and those jobs like digging over the garden and making constructive changes to the backyard. Now it is just me that seems a good deal harder but eventually I will settle to doing the jobs I am capable of doing and getting tradesmen in to do the rest. I guess that is a part of the acceptance journey.
And so life goes on for me. I am hoping there will be signs I am getting stronger and more able to cope. I accept good and bad days will still happen and I will have to find a way to cope with that. I just want to find it easier to surf the waves of grief that are a part of my life now and find a new balance.