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As most of you know a few years ago I wrote my story. It was supposed to be a love story but it turned out to be much more. Some of the most emotional parts are what I wrote about the days after losing Johnny.

Then in February 2006 my ex husband died too. I was in danger of really going over the edge but I told my grandson something to help him. It was then I realized that I had been afraid to live or be happy because I thought it would be a betrayal of my love for Johnny and his for me. When I saw my grandson doing the same thing I told him that the real betrayal of Denis would be if he didn't live and be happy. That is what helped me move forward and not fall into the same trap with the death of Denis.

My life is far from perfect but it is good. I get lonely and their are times I wish I had a man in my life again. Still I love my freedom and I know that any man would always be only second best.

Not long after Denis died I wrote an aferwards to my story. It was an update, much has changed again sense then. Still the way I ended it struck me tonight as I was editing my story to save. I hope some of what I said will help you Michelle and any others who are so lost. I have been there and at times I still am but these words are so true and I really needed that reminder as these dates seem determined to haunt me.

Part of the afterwards of my stroy.

I have learned that much of life is about death. I have also learned that there are no guarantees. Life is very precious and it is up to us to make the most we can out of each moment. Live but be sure that while you do that you remember that others have a life to live too. They have just as much to live for and as much right to live. Never do anything that will in any way take that away from someone else.

I grieve for all of the people I love who have died. I know that is a normal thing and I know now that grief is something that we go through but it should never become a way of life. Grief should never become our lives. Life is about love. Life as we know it may end but love never ends it is eternal. Because I know that I can go on now and live my life. I can find pleasure out of the simple things and know that all is well.

I got home a little after noon today. All week I had been working in my yard after work. Yesterday I cleaned my car inside and outside. Today when I got home I had a little more to do in my yard. It was so nice to be out there in the sun and light wind. Once I looked up and saw the Eagles flying overhead. It is just so beautiful here. After my supper tonight I took Misty for a long walk. The longest we have gone on in a while. I really enjoyed it and didn't seem to tire out as much as I have been.

I wish I could show everyone I love what I see everyday. Everywhere you look the California Poppies are blooming. In every field and on both sides of the road you see them. There are also purple Lupin and carpets of the small blue Lupin. The red bud trees are in bloom and I see wild lavender. In people's yards you see Lilac trees both lavender and white. Many colors of Iris are in bloom as well. I have several colors in my own yard. I also have a riot of California poppies. Today I took pictures of the ones in my yard. I also took a mental picture.

While in Louisiana I realized something. Someday in the not too distant future I will have to move back there. I don't want to live there. I certainly don't want to leave this beautifull place that I love so much but I need to be with my children and grandchildren. They made it very clear that they want me there. In a perfect world I could have both my family and this place that gives me so much peace and touches my heart so deeply. This is not a perfect world. That world awaits me when the time comes for me to join my Johnny and all of my other loved ones who have gone on before me.

In the mean time I have much to do. I have family that I have just become in contact with that I want to meet and know better. I have my work to do and I have so much around me to enjoy. I will take my walks with Misty and stop and visit with my neighbors. I'll work in my yard and love every minute of the beauty I see around me everyday. I will reach out to those I see who are lost or alone like I have been. When I do leave to live in Louisiana I will have much in my heart and mind to carry with me. There I will have my family and by the time I do go there I will no longer be working. I will learn to be a senior and find something to fill my life while my family are busy.

I have come a long way in the past few years both physically and emotionally. My life has had many roadblocks but it has also given me many joys. I have known a great amount of love and a great amount of heartbreak. It has taken all of those things to get me to where I am now. I know God and trust in Him in a way that I never dreamed that I would. So that's my story. I hope anyone who reads it will get something from it. I hope the things that I have learned will somehow be helpfull to others in some way.

As for me now I intend to LIVE!! and just in case you are wondering I still get those signs that tell me I am never really alone. I have someone very special just a whisper away.

That was written in the Spring of 2006. As you know I have never gone back to Louisiana. I spend a couple of months with my family each year and they take the time to be with me as much as they can. I probably spend more time with them than I would living there. I also live in Redding now instead of French Gulch. As some of you saw on facebook this is still an incredibly beautiful place.

So tonight as I face the week ahead and all of those painful and precious memories I will remember those words I wrote. Life is precious and I will honor Johnny and Denis and my parents and brothers by living my life to the fullest I can. I know the pain will still be with me most of the time but it will not be my life. As I said life is about love and I feel love around me everyday.

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Sometimes, a big hug from a friend can say so much more than words and I think this is one of those times.

Thanks for talking me out of my "valley" yesterday. I'm trying to climb back up the mountain today.


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