Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Generally I have a title for a post before I write.  Today I don't.  One will emerge. 

A man I used to be friends with has re entered my life via Facebook.  Facebook has connected me with several old friends, but this man immediately reached beyond its pages.  We've exchanged a couple e-mails and his intentions appear sincere and trustworthy.  He wants to get to know the woman behind the photos on Facebook. 

I welcome the connection.  Since he lives hundreds of miles away, it appears we'll be pen pals.  But in some ways we're two peas in a pod.  Both introverts, both presently unmarried, both thoughtful, and both writers.  Well, he's an author of seven nonfiction books, so his league is, well, different.

My hope is that I can find a true friend, one I can relate to and care about.

That's all I wanted to say.  I welcome a new chapter in my life, and love that I can contribute to it by writing.

I think God has good intentions for me.  "Where love is, there is God also."

I just looked up this quote. It is the title of a story by Leo Tolstoy.  I just read the story.  Now I know why this post doesn't have a title.  The 'love' has to be filled in by me.

Where _____ is, there is God also.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Why let go?

   My list of  reasons to let go.

  • Our late husbands' love is encoded in our DNA and can never to be lost
  • Fulfillment is ours to access inside, not for someone to give us or take away
  • God's larger love story for us is being written
  • We can mature in ways we didn't have to when our late husbands offered us shelter
  • We inhabit our own psyches fully, now that he's not around to inhabit them
  • Living without his second opinion is fine because our own and God's is ample
  • The fear "But I'm alone" can't stop us from traveling, or stepping out to have a good time
  • We have more sex with the person who gets all our hot spots, every time - us!
  • We blow our own minds when we realize how powerful we've become on our own
  • We blow other wives' minds when they learn all we've been doing

The past isn't firm ground.  It has vanished.  I feel shaky.  The present is shifting under my feet constantly, yet I trust there's solid rock underneath.  This rock is God and the 'me' beneath all my shifting identities.  'Wife' is gone.  My husband's eyes don't mirror mine anymore.  'Widow' is a but a passage, and cold comfort.  

God remains.  The sky remains.  The water, the earth and all their inhabitants remain.  And their eyes mirror my intention and deepest self.  What message am I sending out?  Love?  Gratitude? Anticipation?  I need to be held accountable.

What benefits have you found in letting go of your late husband and the life you once had?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

In the emptiness I meet my architect

Things I'm learning on this, my private retreat in Down East Maine.

Though fear stands at the portal of ME,
and would easily be my architect,
I am not my FEAR. 
My FEAR is not me.

I am instead NEEDINESS.  Incompletion.
Blindness. Unknowingness.
I give these attributes my consent.
My architect, is LOVE.

Blockage by fear
is a path well known and well worn.
Its crime? Blocking vibrant life, earthy love,
 and ME, most of all.

I've learned the password to move past my fear.
It's simple and profound.
 "You are welcome, ____ _______(my name)"
said with whole heart and will.

Inside what have I found? who? ME?
I stand inside, pliable, still blind,  uninitiated.
I infer my footing because
LOVE has me in sight. 

                                                                                                      'poem' by GowitheFlo

I hope I can continue to tell you who and what I find. 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

I choose...

Every moment of every day I can live without shame and pain from being alone.  I just had an exquisite lobster meal on a restaurant's deck, overlooking the international ferry that transports travellers to/from Canada.   Earlier today I feared a rainy mood on a rainy day.  But morning yielded to a sunny day and magnificent meal. 

That's my lesson for this day. 

If I live expectantly, willingly, and gratefully, abandoning my regret and embarrassment at my aloneness in a world of couples, families and groups, great joy and innocent delight emerges.  I share that freely, with waitresses, with other diners, and it is returned in kind. 

It's not the families and groups I miss being part of.  It's the best male friend, united in body, soul and mind that I miss.  Not my husband.  It's the unknown lover who is at this moment traveling, active yet lonely, lover and friend of the earth and sky, and ready to reach out.  In his absence I have my own dear friendship.  Today is so welcome, so loved.  I draw nourishment from the sky and the sea, in this quiet place where land changes name from United States to Canada, if one but takes a ferry with a wish for more.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Happy Anniversary

Happy Wedding Anniversary. True, my husband's been dead some seven years, but I celebrate his gift of love just the same. Each year, if I'm able, I return to a campsite way up Maine's coast, where we would celebrate our anniversary. Perhaps in the future I will have a reason to lay down new patterns of celebration. I hope so. I am soooo ready!

His absence is a gift I've come to appreciate. In the emptiness I've discovered my neediness. I've discovered my fear and confusion. I've discovered my compassion and tenderness toward my neediness, fear, and confusion. I'm also amazed to learn that the more I welcome this emptiness and enter into it, the more I can welcome others into my life. Grief isn't all that bad, because letting go gives me more space inside to love anew.

I've come a long way. I've a long way to go. I'd like to share a little bit about me to give it context.

I was born April Fool's Day, an unexpected gender from an unexpected conception, cross eyed and needy. Mom and Dad thought they were quite through having children, but into the family I popped. Mom, already overtaxed in her capacity to mother, let me believe I was the final straw, calling me her accident, her mistake. Of course, I figured if I was smarter, or prettier, or popular, she'd welcome me. But, try as I might, I never became enough. I then tried to 'un' be, figuring if I disappeared, I wouldn't tax her capacity too much and she'd be at least grateful.

Unfortunately, neither approach resulted in a single "good job!", "I love you", or affectionate hug. Oh, dear. I then built a wall so high inside you couldn't see me and I couldn't see you.  I wouldn't have to feel the sting of rejection should my neediness show and someone not have the capacity to fill it. 

My husband was a big part of my healing, and I'm pretty angry that he isn't around any more to be my fan.   I know my biggest fan is God, amorphous as He/She is. I trust I'll grow, that when I say an unconditional "Yes!" to life, no matter what its circumstances, a larger love will manifest. It's just so bloody lonely sometimes. Still, the love story this anniversary celebrates is but a part of the larger love story I'm still writing. I would dishonor my late husband's love for me if I didn't enter this larger story.

 Happy Anniversary.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

It all starts in the heart

I realized yesterday that I'm just having a plain old garden variety existential crisis. What a relief! 

These things I know.

One, life is asking me to figure things out. 
Two, Nature is rhythmic, with regeneration and death.
Three, Life will have stumbling blocks.
Four,  my journey isn't complete until I make somebody else's heart shine.
Five,  I have the ingredients inside me to do that.

Tomorrow I head out to my favorite place on earth - Down east Maine.  I'll be camping in my little RV.  I'll be cycling and hiking, and eating lobster.  I'll also be listening, and not just to fog horns. 

God, hear my prayer.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

What's going on here?

Positive:  I don't need to be around  for someone who is here all the time.  Freedom!

Negative: I don't need to be around  for someone who is here all the time.  Loneliness.

I'm tired of trying to frame post widowhood in an optimistic manner.   I'm aware we widows and widowers are expected to make the best of a difficult situation, 'get over it', "get on with it', 'grow out of it'.  We're congratulated when we pick up the pieces and start over.   We create the stories of triumph over adversity.   If it makes others feel better, yes, tidy endings do happen.   Love does reenter the picture.  Happily ever after is yours for the taking.  Hey, if you're lucky, your loss can be new material for a sitcom!

Now, the real picture in this blog writer's life. Seven years trying to make the best of things, not succeeding too well at the moment.   Seven years living in survival mode wedging bigger and bigger pockets of thriving in.  Focusing on making something that's my own, even if it's not the best.   Even if it's not making any sense.

News alert: I  have not made sense of the tragedy I encountered, yet it's the most common tragedy of all.  After all, everybody dies.  I feel stupid and clueless. 

Winston Churchill said something I identify with.

"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."

God love him.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


This poem shares my heart today, and what I'm missing and need.
Mostly this poem is about loving tenderly, both myself and other wonderful people I've yet to meet. 

I want to see the world through your eyes.
You see it so differently than I.
I need to see what I'm missing
with these, my one pair of eyes.

I want to hear the world through your ears.
To know why you laugh and cry.
To know how you resonate so deeply
when your spirit touches the sky. 

I know life's secrets leave you hungering.
and life's snubs leave you aching some more.
My hands need yours to teach me
how to touch you where you're sore. 

I want to know you thoroughly,
and treasure who you are.
I want to love you candidly,
your tears, your laugh, your charm.

I'll make your fear grow pale, you'll see,
in light of love so pure and grand,
that life inside becomes vivid and real,
bringing you all it can.

I miss you when you hide from me,
afraid I've promised too much, too long.
But come at your pace to trust, my love,
for inside you is life's best song.

                                Poem by GowitheFlo