Saturday, July 30, 2011

Changing Again.

It has been a very long while since I have written. My therapist suggested that grief makes it very difficult to concentrate. I think she was right, but now that I find many of my everyday needs being met once again, I feel ready to write. I even painted a little a few weeks back.

But I am not going to write this blog. I have started a new one, one that seems more suited to my life. It is called One Part Widow. If you wish to follow me once again, please join me there.

Thank you for being a part of my life. I hope that you choose to continue reading my musings.


Sunday, March 20, 2011


I am angry today.

The county wants every penny back that Dennis received for care. Yes, he had money left and I was afraid this would happen, but I am still angry that it has happened.

I am angry at the social worker for not telling us that the help was simply a loan.

I am angry that Dennis had to work to receive this loan.

I am angry at Dennis for not gifting me the money like we discussed.

I am angry at myself for being angry.

Maybe I just needed a good excuse to cry. It's been weeks since I have had a good hard cry and maybe I just need one.

Lucky you, for reading this today. No comments of sympathy, please. I am just reporting the truth as it is today

Saturday, March 19, 2011


The last three weeks I let Jane and Ralph take care of me. It wasn't until I came home to a needy cat and an even needier cat sitter, that I realized just how much I really needed to be cared for. As much as I miss Dennis, I do not miss the care-giving aspect of our relationship.

This week I took care of myself. I had three long over-due doctor visits and procedures and a dental appointment. I also contacted several friends and made plans for the next month for lunches, happy hours and walks around the lakes. I made a list of things that I need to complete to get the dead Dennis done with (taxes, county recovery reports, medicare....) allowing me to remember the rest of Dennis.

I also went back to work - my very part time job - and picked up a few new responsibilities to complete sometime over the next few weeks.

I programmed my Wii Fit Plus with a new program that would keep me working out for 43 minutes at a time. I still have my ChaLean program to work when I want (although I don't want right now) and my walks around the lakes.

Yes, I am on the road to recovery and building a new life.


Sunday, March 13, 2011

A Walk in the Graveyard

I am back from a very helpful visit with my sister and brother-in-law in London. Jane and Ralph took great, nurturing care of me - feeding me, letting me be lazy, making plans for going places that I would enjoy, and taking long (for me, not for them) walks in various neighborhoods in London. For the first time in 2 or 3 years I let someone else take care of me.

A short walk from their home is a huge graveyard. It is multi-cultural, perhaps multi-denominational, but definitely it is large and ostentatious in places. It is the perfect place for long and quiet walks during the week. Jane and I went there once and then I took a walk there by myself one day.

On the walk with Jane I asked her to tell me about a time she remembered that Dennis was not sick. Dennis and I were together for 10 years; Dennis was sick for 6 years. Although I fell in love with a healthy man, I was having a difficult time remembering him without an aid to walk, a diaper or a fight needing to be fought. I needed to hear something else.

She was not able to remember much either, but did remember him both being aggravating by his over-indulgence of me one Christmas and by being fun at a baseball game that she indulged him in one afternoon while I worked.  We never found a non-ill memory, but did finally get to a place in our walk where we were just plain laughing or simply living our lives in the moment.

A while later I walked again by myself. It was a place in London where I could talk aloud to myself, a very rare commodity. I talked, yelled and cried and no one noticed. Finally I sat down on a bench, generously provided by someone who was honoring someone else they loved. I told myself it was time to move forward, to plan a life by myself.

I can, and do, miss Dennis daily. Sometimes I miss his complaining, his whining and other days I miss his stories and his laughter. But I know that I must move forward. And I want to move forward. And there is really no other direction to go.


Friday, February 11, 2011

Tear Tsunami

A wave, more like a tsunami, of tears hit me today. In fact I am trying to write my way through them. My therapist, doctor and friends warmed me about these waves of grief. I wish they were done. I don't like these feelings.

I am not sure of the trigger. There are so many things muddled together. I haven't left the house in two days. I haven't had the energy to get out of bed, but the cat eventually forced the situation each day. Tomorrow I have a lunch date that I cannot get out of - I only know her work email as a contact. Getting up and out of the house may help.

I have eaten. I managed to go to the grocery store and purchase ready made comfort food - potatoes, turkey and gravy. Maybe too many carbs? But at least I am eating.

The "30" day period has just come and gone, maybe that is part of it. I found out today that someone slightly related to me, living in another country, may also have MSA. I was asked to please write a Press Release letter for MSA Awareness Month, a skill way beyond my competence. I found an editor who graciously helped me through the process.

The tipping point came when the county sent me another estate recovery letter today. They want proof of Dennis' checking, savings and other financial accounts as of the date that he died. They want money. It was just one too many things.

All of this is simple life, I know that. And I also know that I have to face all of it, and I am responsible for my life. But I don't want to be right now. I want someone to take care of me and fix all of this. And at the same time that is exactly what I do not want.

And I guess all of that adds up to a wave of tears and sadness overwhelming me once in a while.

Ann, not dealing with grief with a smile today

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

MSA Awareness

As many of you know, Dennis died of a rare neurological disorder called Multiple System Atrophy. This disease is considered an orphan disease, meaning it is so rare that it affects too few people to be given much thought by the medical community, politicians, and funding for research.

However, currently there is a petition that you can sign that only asks that MSA be brought to the attention of others. I would be very appreciative if you would take a few minutes to sign this petition. Signing it will not bring new information to your inbox (unless you choose it to do so) and will do you no harm. It may, just may however, bring MSA the attention it is due.

MSA Awareness Petition