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Laughing, crying and remembering


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I have a memory that I want to post. Maybe it is more than a memory . maybe it is a thought or feelings, then again maybe it is just a heart reaching out to a time when life was always both laughter and tears.

Most of you know that Johnny and I met when I was barely 15 and were parted because of a family member, actually an uncle who had no say in my life. It is hard to imagine that in just a couple of months it will be 51 years sense I first met the person who defined my life.

We had a few months then, Time together with my brother and his sister. A sister who would become like a sister to me and years later would be murdered and break both mine and Johnny's heart. I remember those early days. I remember the laughter, the love and and the tears. Just being with him always made me want to laugh and cry at the same time. I loved him so much that it hurt.

Years later when we were finally together again we agreed that we had loved forever and only had to meet that majic night in 1959. Once we were finally together I always had that same feeling. I wanted to laugh and cry at the same time so many times. Just looking at him and seeing the love in his eyes could fill me with so much joy that the tears would come along with the laughter.

Dispite the fact that those few precious months were filled with chemo and doctors appointments along with anciety and panic attacks. there was always that deep, aching and beautiful love. A love that was so deep that it hurt. So many times I would look at him and just want to take the pain and anxiety away. It broke my heart to see the man who gave me everything going through those things and there was so little I could do to help.

I started this because today is Halloween. In over 50 years of loving him I only have memories of two holidays that we spent together. One was that 4th of July night one day after I finally got to him to spend what we hoped would be our lives together. He was so sick that we stayed in our motel room that night. I watched the fireworks from the window and held the curtain back so he could see from the bed. The next night he was in the hospital and 3 days later diagnosed with Lung Cancer/

The second holiday was Halloween. Oh I remember it so well. For so many years Halloween had been a big party with my family. That year we were to spend it alone together and I looked forward to it so much. I wanted to make special cookies for his grandchildren like I had always done for mine. I also wanted plenty of candy because for the first time in over 32 years I lived where I would have trick or treaters.

I was afraid to leave him alone by then. The anxiety attacks were running rampant in our lives. He knew how much it meant to me so we got in the car and went to WalMart. He stayed alone while I got what I needed. I rushed because I was so afraid that he would have an anxiety attack alone in the car, he never did.

I made the cookies that I had planned and later gave some to two of his grandchildren who came and the rest to the little boy across from us. As the trick or treaters came I would get so excited and seeing me so happy thrilled Johnny. Once in a while a very small child would come and he would have me get them to come in a little way so he could see them. He loved children so much. He would tell me to give the little ones extra candy.

Looking back now I realize that after a month of almost constant panic and anxiety attacks he never had one that whole evening. He was so intent on giving me that night of fun and now I know special memories.

I have so many special memories and like this one they all make me want to laugh and cry at the same time. Some are just so simple like him reaching out and touching my hand as I walked by or patting me on the butt. Another is the look in his eyes when he would give me just a simple kiss as he thanked me for something I did for him. The silly little jokes and the special names he had for me. I realize that in those few short months I had more love than most people have in a lifetime. That is what I hold onto now.

There are still days when I question why I am here and he is gone. Days when I just want him back no matter what the cost. Then something happens and I know that for some reason I needed to go through the laughter and the pain to get me where I am now.

I have been reaching out to those of you who I see going through so much of what I have. I know that we have many things in common but there was always something different about my story and mine and Johnny's battle with lung cancer. No one ever told of the things we went through. Because of that I always felt so alone.

I came to the boards regularly but not as often as I had been. Mostly just to the Just for Fun forum and here to grieving. I had seen so much pain here then one night a few weeks ago I saw Michelle's post when she lost the light of her life. I knew the minute I saw her post that I had to reach out to her. I did and now we support eachother. We have found that so much of our journey has been the same. I don't feel so alone any more and I pray that in some small way I can keep her from going through so many of the heartbreaking times that I did. That she will not feel so alone.

Oh I know this is so long again. I always seem to do that. I know often you must all think I pour out too much here. Still I feel that this is the one place where I can spill my heart and know that someone will understand.

There is a song by a county artist Rodney Crowell. The song is After All This time. I have to words of it somewhere. It speaks so much to mine and Johnny's relationship both in our youth and our later years together.

There were trains and we out ran them

There were songs and we out sung them

There were brighter days unending

There was all the love two hearts could hold

After all this time you are always on my mind

I still love you

There were times I should have thrilled you

There were times I could have killed you

You're the only love my heart has known

After all this time you are always on my mind

I still need you

Oh I could never let it end 'cause my heart takes so long to mend

The memories I hold inside the lonely nights I sit and cry

After all this time you are always on my mind I still want you

I don't remember all of the exact words,. I know it goes on to talk about a false goodbye and last words never spoken.

And yes there were so many of those words that were never spoken out loud and we had had our false goodbye once before and I have to hold on the the thought that even now our seperation is a false goodbye.

Once again thank you for putting up with me and my tears and long long posts of memories. Sometimes I have no choice,. the words are there and I can only find relief when I put them here.God Bless all of you for being here.

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I haven't traveled the road you have but your words touch my heart so much. When it comes my time to travel that road I know I'll always remember you and your words and that will be a comfort to me. Please keep posting your feelings and memories and thank you so much for doing so.


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"RandyW"]1. Cancer can never take away the love!!

2. Cancer can never take away the memories!!

3 let it all out whenever YA want!!!

Thank you for those words Randy! I'm on my 18th day I need as many words of encouragement as I can get! Bless your heart!

And Lily.....thanks for our talk last night!

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