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Hello my dear friends. I am afraid that I have been absent without leave. I thought several times about requesting a hall pass but I thought I would get back her sooner than later. So many things have been going on that time has just flown by. I do want all of you to know that you are always in my prayers and not far from my thoughts. You have all helped me so much at some of the lowest points in my life. I am truly grateful. I hope that soon I will have more time to try to offer that same support to all here who may need it.

I guess I will give an update on what is going on with me. I'm doing good. No that is wrong. I'm doing very good and there are many reasons for that.

As you all know in February my ex husband died. Despite all of our differences I do grieve for him. It has not been the soul shattering grief that losing Johnny caused me but it is grief never the less. His death taught me some things and in the process helped me to move forward and really become a part of the world again.

As I said in one of my posts I saw my grandson afraid to be happy. He thought if he was happy in any way that he was betraying his Paw Paw and not showing his love and how much hurt he had. I could see that in him right away. That is when I also reallized that I have been doing the same thing for over 3 years. I felt that being happy in anyway would be a betrayal of the love Johnny and I had for one another. When I saw that in my grandson I had to help him. The words I spoke to him helped me as well. I said that the real betrayal of the one we love who has died is not being happy. Because they love us our happiness is important to them. We have to live and be happy for them because they love us so much.

Another thing that has helped is something that I never expected nor wanted to attain in the way that I did. I started getting my Social Security when I turned 62 in February. By the time my first check came I was officially a widow even tho Denis and I were divorced. Being married so long qualified me to draw widow's bennifts. Because of that I am not under so much stress all of the time. I can work less and not get behind. I have my SS to depend on. That along with my new attitude have really brought me out into the light of life again.

I'm not working nearly as many hours all of the time but I do work long hours when my boss makes a special request. She was too good to me when I needed help for me to let her down. I have also been spending every afternoon working in my yard getting it all fixed up for Spring and Summer (until the rain started again). I am just about caught up with that but still have a lot of other things that I need to finish up or sort out. I need to paint my porch and I am in the process of cleaning up my computer files. You would not believe how much sh** I have saved that needs to be deleted!

I spent one day being a turist in my own town. I went to the beautiful Turtle Bay Park and walked across our famous Sundial Bridge. I visited the gardens and the butterfly house. I take my dog on long walks when the weather permits. I do all of this because I have so much more energy. Some of that energy comes from the lack of stress, some because I have started taking B12 and most because I have finally succeeded in doing something that I had failed so many times.

As you know last August I quit smoking. Unfortunately that only lasted for 2 and 1/2 weeks. I couldn't do it while under so much stress I also needed the lozenges and they cost much more than the cigaretts if used right. So I started smoking again. Well a month ago I quit for good. I still use the lozenges but not as much as at first and this time I don't feel like I have lost something but like I have gained something. I hope I don't also gain something I don't want like weight but I will have to deal with that. I WILL NOT SMOKE AGAIN :!:

I feel so much better. I have more energy and don't feel so tired all of the time and I don't cough or feel short of breath. I am able to do things that I would not have attempted even two months ago. I am very proud of myself.

I also have some other good news to share. So many times I have had to come here to share my heartache and ask for your support now I want to share my good news and there is a lot of it to share.

Several years ago I was trying to research my family tree. I found a lot of information about my mom's side of the family but nothing about my dad's side. I posted my grandparents names on a geneology message board. Never heard anything in all of those years. I had only been home from Louisiana one day when I got an email that had my grandmother's name as the title. The letter was from my cousins son. I had met her only once over 40 years ago. In the process of getting to know who he is I recieved more emails from his mom and his aunt. I am now in constant contact with my long lost cousins, most I have never met. I plan on changing that. I am taking a week off in August to spend with them in Bakersfield.

The other news is very special to me. If you remember several months ago I posted about a dream of Johnny where he was looking at a baby girl. I had awoke certain that someone was going to have a little girl. Nothing ever came of that. Then in December my granddaughter got married. Well I just found out that I am going to be a great grandma for the first time. I'm betting that is my little girl Johnny was telling me about :!:

One last thing happened last night that really made me feel good. As those who have followed my story know I have had a very mixed relationship with Johnny's kids. I have also told you how close I am to one of his sons and daughter in law. When Johnny died his little grandson was only two. He called Johnny Paw Paw and me Maw Maw Lillian. That has been 3 and a half years ago. Last night I talked to Valerie. She told me that they had been looking at pictures and had come across one of me and Johnny. Logan said "look Mama it is Paw Paw and Maw Maw". He still remembered and he thinks of me as his Maw Maw.

All of these wonderfull things happening and the best friends and neighbors a person could have. I have all of that and all of you and my two wonderfull families. And every day I still feel the love of a very special man who I know is never far away. I am truly blessed :D

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Yes you are trulylessed and am so happy to hear all this great news.May the blessings continue with prayers for ya!!! :D

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Lillian...I am so very happy to read about all of these wonderful things that are happening in your life right now! The importnat thing here is that you realize that you deserve all of these good things. Sometimes, I think you are way too hard on yourself and that makes me sad! It's not a crime for any of us to be happy, especially after the hell we have gone through. You are worthy of lots of happy times!!! You're a great person and through your job, you give so much love and caring to others. I know Johnny is happy that you are finally getting joy from life again! God bless you, Lil!

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I want to again thank all of you for your support. It means so much to me. Yes Katie you are right I probably should have posted in the "Good news" forum. I'm afraid I got so used to coming here that it was just automatic.

There is something else I want to add here. You know I always tell of those things I see as signs from Johnny. Some have been pretty strange. Some have happened so many times that I just take them for granted until the stop for a while. Now something really strange has happened again. I take it as a sign but maybe it is just coinsidence and there is another explanation but I really don't think so.

It was 4 years ago this past weekend when I left Louisiana for California. I was supposed to settle here for a while then go on to Johnny in a few months. On the way here I made a detour and spent 10 days with him.

While he was in the hospital in July his sister sent him white roses. When he got out his niece sent him red roses. He was very emotional about that because no one had ever done that for him before. One night just a few days before he left home for the last time he had me buy a dozen red roses. He said it was 6 for him and 6 for me.

I mentioned on the aniversary of that day coming home and smelling roses when I walked in the door. Now there is something even stranger!

One of the first things I planted in my yard over two years ago was a yellow Peace rose. This is it's 3rd season of bloom. Over the weekend my Yellow Peace Rose gave me quite a shock. Half of it is blooming red roses! Now I may be wrong and there may be another explanation for that but something tells me that it is Johnny sending me the special sign I am always asking for! In 3 seasons of bloom this has never happened before and I have always grown yellow peace and never had this happen before :!:

What do all of you think of this?

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