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Posts Tagged ‘best friend’

cup

This is an extremely personal post, but I wanted to share with you this morning.

For several years, hubby and I would make a trip to Indiana to visit with my best friend and her husband for a week. This was always such a fun vacation. Just spending time with the person who really “got” me made me very happy. Before she got sick, she was an early riser, and I remember waking up with two dogs piling into the bed with hubby and me, and being handed a cup of coffee. My friend and I always drank from cups with little faces on them. There were four different colors (the cup in the picture is really a darker blue than it shows) and each one had a different expression.

My friend developed breast cancer several years ago, and she had surgery, chemo, and radiation. She beat the cancer, but her health was never good after that. She was tired all the time. The last couple of times I went to Indiana, all we did was sit and play computer games together. But we both loved doing it, and we were TOGETHER.

In 2011, she fell and broke her wrist, which wasn’t a HUGE deal. But shortly after that, she started having short spells of passing out. When she went to her doctor after a longer spell, she was immediately taken to the emergency room. It turned out she had blood clots in both lungs. I remember talking to her on the phone on a Friday evening. She told me they were going to move her to a bigger hospital. In the wee hours of Sunday morning, May 1, 2011, I got a call from her husband. She had passed away.

A while after her death, I was invited to go to Indiana with her mother and sister to go through her things. The three of us, along with her husband, went through everything, and it was kind of cathartic. It brought back fond memories, and we all found things we had given her. We all took the things we wanted, things to treasure and remember her by. I was so thrilled when her husband offered me the cups we had drunk from all those years. They were our special cups.

Anyway, that’s the story behind the cups, plus a lot of other rambling I felt the need to do. What brought this all on was that I decided to drink coffee out of the blue one this morning. As the coffee poured into the cup, a flood of tears came from my eyes. After 3 1/2 years, the grief is still raw. I have these little bouts of tears from time to time. And I let it happen. I rarely cry anymore, but I allow tears for this. I remember her kindness mixed with her sarcasm. I remember her corny sense of humor and her infectious laugh. I loved her fiercely.

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When my best friend died two years ago, her husband gave me her set of coffee cups. These cups have faces on them, and the noses stick out. There are four, all of different colors. I was so glad to have them because these were the cups we always drank out of when I was in Indiana visiting her. So as I’m sitting here this morning drinking my coffee, my mind is on my friend and how much I miss her. And how proud she would have been of me for getting the 20 lbs. off. And how proud she would have been that I’ve written so many books. And she would be so glad that I’m still good friends with her husband, author Jonathan Eli. I miss her so darn MUCH. I miss her sarcastic sense of humor and her kindness. But she would have wanted life to go on for me, her husband, and the rest of her family and friends. So even though I miss her with sadness, I miss her fondly.

Looking back at some of the things I’ve accomplished, I realize I shouldn’t be so frustrated about my writing right now. Don’t we all have periods where we slow down for awhile? I used to be able to release at least three novellas a year. Or two novels. Yet I’ve struggled lately. I know that part of the reason was because I was feeling so bad physically when my diabetes wasn’t diagnosed, therefore, not controlled. Am I just having trouble getting back into the routine? So many things have happened to hinder me, especially my husband breaking his ankle. And at my full-time job, work has been overwhelming. Not the best of conditions for writing. The past couple of weeks, I’ve really been trying to focus on getting my house in order. I’m really seeing how much work my husband actually was doing before hurting his ankle. I haven’t been exercising because I’ve been only taking 10-20 minutes for lunch every day. That’s going to stop. I HAVE to make time for exercise. I haven’t done anything for about two weeks. Next week, I’m going to make a point of taking my full lunch hour so I can go exercise. Then I’ll feel better when I come home in the evenings, and I can get back on the writing. It’s time to take charge. I can call those customers when I get back. Those sales tax reports can wait just a little longer. I NEED to exercise.

Those are my thoughts for today. Now it’s off to get ready for church, a place where I can forget about everything for a little while and focus on the most important things. 🙂

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I usually do spur of the moment posts. It’s usually something that triggers a thought and I want to talk about it. So I usually don’t schedule blogs ahead of time. But I’m doing that tonight. Why? Because, tomorrow (it will be today when you read this), I’m going to have a booth in our local Apple Festival. This is going to be a really tough thing for me because, in addition to my eggshell ornaments, I’ll be trying to sell the last of the baskets woven by my best friend who passed away on May 1 of this year. This will be the first time I’ve ever done this festival without her. She lived about 500 miles away, but she always came down for this, and we always had so much fun. This year, another of my best friends (and cover artist), Anya Kelleye will be there with me. She’s always helped us set up the booth and so many other things, but this year she’s staying there with me. I don’t think I could do it if she wasn’t there. So everyone send me nice thoughts while I’m at the festival and pray that I don’t cry.

So I didn’t write last night. There was a lot to get done, and I decided I didn’t have enough eggshell ornaments done, so I had to work on more of those. And I needed to get to bed early since I had to be at the booth at 7:00 AM. Wish me lots of sales!

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A Sad Trip

This weekend I’m visiting Jonathan Eli who lost his wife (and my best friend) last month. I’m here with my best friend’s sister and mother, who are also like family to me. This is the first time I’ve set foot in this house since she’s been gone (it’s almost 500 miles away from my home), and as soon as I walked in, it didn’t feel right. Her absence hit me like a ton of bricks. There were some neighbors here at that time, so I had to go outside and cry. I refused to cry in front of strangers, but I was about to lose it, so I went outside with the dogs. I came back in after the neighbors left, and we all had a moment. This has been a hard trip. We had to go through a lot of her things, especially her jewelry and her craft items. Today, we went to church with Jon, and that was hard, too. I go to that church every year when my husband and I come up here for our annual visit, so it was very hard to be there without her. I’ve had a few moments this weekend where I couldn’t hold back the tears, but nothing as bad as when I first stepped into the house. We’re leaving in the morning, and I have mixed feelings about that. I’ll miss Jon, of course, but I’ll also be a little bit relieved to leave the house that feels so wrong without my friend. We’ve had a good visit, in spite of the circumstances, and we have been able to have a few laughs while we were here.

I just want to say that if any of you reading this has a friend that means the world to you, please don’t take her/him for granted. Spend as much time as possible with your friend, and talk often. Savor every moment and realize how precious it is. I’m glad I’m able to say that I did, and I don’t regret anything except the fact that she lived so far away. But we loved AOL Instant Messenger. 😉

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This is a post that I really don’t know how to write. The last round of ROW80 was hijacked by fate when my mom had a heart attack and I had to help her out a lot. I thought that was the worst that could happen to me for awhile. Not so. At 2:00 am this morning, I got a call from my best friend’s husband. Calls at that time of morning are never good. He told me that she had passed away. My friend of 38 years was gone, just like that. She was the same age as me.

The question is…can I go on with my WIP? The answer to that is yes. Why? Because she would want me to. She would never want me to abandon my writing to sit around and grieve over her. I’ll do a lot of grieving, there’s no question of that. Right now I feel like a heavy weight is on my chest and I can barely breathe. I don’t know when the dam will break and the crying will start. I hope it doesn’t happen at church this morning, because I don’t like public displays like that. But my church family would understand.

I would ask that you all send to her family and mine prayers if you pray and good thoughts if you don’t. She was the wife of an author friend that some of you might know, but I don’t know if he’s ready to make that public yet. I would ask special prayers and thoughts for him.

To all of you that are doing ROW80, I hope that you’re doing well…and I’m still there with you.

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