Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Sunday, May 24, 2015

If Patience is a virtue - then I'm a saint.

Thank God, I'm patient. Well sorta. I mean at times. Oh ok, only on Monday mornings between 9-11AM. After that it's sporadic til Thursday about 3PM then I am good til Saturday am.

These are things I am thinking about nowadays:

I am a young widow in waiting.
I am a 45 year old woman in waiting.
I hate the sound of it.
I hate the look of it.
"I am 45 year old widow."

Oh and did I set up that interview?
Did I run the dishwasher?
I wonder what Steed wants.... oops. sorry my bad.

Honestly -- I wish I was in heat.

These past few weeks have been filled with wonder as I wander about - you might see me at Target or the mall just loafing about. Or you might've seen me at Criminal Records or Goodwill trying to get a little bit of retail therapy in. OR better yet I have been spotted at the gym. Sweating my grief out.

Exercise and sleep. Out by 9pm up by 6AM... two times I went to bed at 6:30 - oh hell why am I telling you this?
Pity party?
Self Loafing?
Bored out of my gourd?

No. I am trying to find my footing. I am trying to make sure each foot is steady - left foot - right foot - head up - shoulders back - stomach in - oh wait, that's charm school drills.

What? Jill in charm school? Gasp!

So I put on the alarm on the house.
And  I wait,
And I think,
And I cry,
And I punch the pillows,
And I holler.

So what I am waiting on? Oh yeah, I'm still waiting on the answer of what took my husband... yeah. I am beginning to think it's a trick question. I am gonna start looking to the outliers for theories and hyperpole definitions. So I wait cause that's all I can do.

Work.
Wait.
Think.
Sit-ups.
Work.
Wait.
Open the garage door.
Work....
oh hell you get it.

You know, I have hugged alot of folks lately - I sure hope I smell ok, cause that's another story.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Visions of Sugarplums... smashed

Ask anyone if they could handle a huge setback or tragedy or death and they'd probably tell you no. 
People have told me I am brave, strong and have so much respect for how I am handling my husband's death. 
Well let me tell you: I am a survivalist, a realist and a hopeful-ist. 
I tend to go into a mindset that when things are going topsy- turvy, I can solve the problem, I can work it out and I can make it better.
Put this way, any knot in your necklace, I can take it out. 

I made Steed go to the Kaiser urgent care on January 1st to see what was going on and essentially saved his life. He went into a coma, mind you, but he got medical help. He was scared right before he was carted off to the nearest hospital for his eyes told me so. 
After he was admitted and I was told he was gonna be OK, I wasn't scared. I just handled it. 
I made my work schedule work around visiting him - even if it was at his bedside; I held phone meetings in the halls dodging nurses, texted clients from at the cafeteria and even had an argument in a Waffle House parking lot over bad grammar. I finally dropped the news that my husband was in the ICU with double pneumonia. That shut him up. 

I had to travel to Rome, GA to see Steed for he was undergoing trachea rehab. The whole trip took 3 hours with the 100 miles round trip. I went the scenic way so I could have something to look at.

Six weeks of constant thinking of how I am going to do this made me really tired one Saturday that I slept for about two hours in a chair at the ICU in Marietta. It was a hiding place for me. No one knew I was there. 

He told me all about his dreams he had while being under, he told me NOT to tell him anything from my end. He didn't want to know. Ignorance was bliss. 

If Steed was really feeling low, I'd have to separate my mind from his to let him explore his feelings. I couldn't go in and paint the walls yellow for him. He suffered from depression and many physical ailments that were probably hereditary or as simple as mind over matter - where his mind was distraught and so his body. He would joke half way of course, about his condition. He told a cop as we went backstage in Macon, that he was a serial killer. I glared at him. I didn't feel like bailing him out of jail. 

The picture above is the walkway from the parking lot to Kindred Hospital in Rome where he was for about 12 days. He fought the nurses to get home. He said he didn't like me being alone.  

I had turned off the TV for six weeks. I have no clue still how to the work the remote. That was his domain. But I can rewire a lamp.

My visions of sugarplums often were sprinkled with salt.

I protected him with my life against all the elements around him, sometimes even lied so he wouldn't feel bad or worse. People would criticize me for it. I made faces at the phone while they lectured me. I had my reasons and some I was able to get to understand it and to others it was a lost cause. 

At hotels and at home, he slept on the side of the bed nearest to the door so he could protect me from intruders. The last hotel we stayed in was in Athens - and I slept in front of him near the door. 

A client of mine, told me once, about having bad days awhile back;  "...sometimes you gotta crawl inside the sadness. Embrace it. Feel it. Then walk away." And that's what I am trying to do... maybe a few more 100 times than I anticipated.... 

I consider myself very blessed and lucky that I had him as a husband so that's what makes me strong, brave and able to take out the knot. 

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Throwing Plates Against The Wall...

Tonight a week ago was the last night my husband was alive. He wanted burgers over tacos and some cheesecake.
Typical cravings.
He was having a hard time relaxing that night so he kept the tv on and took a shower
Typical routine.
I got frustrated with all this and pulled the covers over my head to sleep.
Typical reaction.
He finally laid down, turned off his light and left the TV on
Typical give in.
I didn't wake up til late; made that decision two times until Ferdinand jumped on the bed
Typical feline action.
I saw he was sleeping. Good deal.
Typical reaction to a late night of restlessness.
I came down, put the coffee on, fed the cats and began to work.
Typical morning.
One time went up to get something, check on him - sleeping like a baby
Typical mid-morning.
Got back to some work and went up to see what he'd want to eat.
Typical 12:10PM
After that it wasn't typical at all.
All hell broke loose, men in cars came, cats ran in the other room under the shoe rack in the closet.
Called sister and my mom, called my client to remind him of interview and told another friend
who called another one, they called, he called - then the pens and paper were pulled out - officer this, EMT that, detective who? and the ME - who what where when how... all answered but why.
Medical Examiner said he was gone. He had been gone.
50. Too Young. On the mend from a coma, he was happy; we were happy.
This was a flurry that no one wanted. This was a storm no one wanted to hunkered down for. The umbrella? It was in the car. We didn't even have any batteries or back up plan. All we had was a new beginning and a fresh start.
Time was on our side.
We had plans.
We were going places. Memphis, Daytona and anywhere else.

Someone said it's funny how we watch the movies and they get results of a death in five mins, Dr House could solve it in one hour, and MASH took the whole war. I have to wait almost 3 months.
According to the Buddhist religion a deceased take about 100 days to travel around saying good bye and coming to terms with their transition. This is about the same time I will find out what took him.

Until then, I'm angry, sad, lonely, frustrated, pissed off ... I kiss your ashes in the box but I stick out with my tongue cause I am mad. I am furious with you so you better have a good excuse for this.

I love you Steed.
1964-2015






Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Jubilee Riots Trying Times video

Jubilee Riots - Trying Times
Penny Black 
Artist: Steve Smith 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Lucky for him, I am the best mean nurse in town.

This sick bug is about deadly.

All it took was about a month and a half in two hospitals, bottles of milk of amnesia (propofal), every antibiotic known to man and a tracheotomy. A central line, a picc line, a pee line and a food peg line. Every kind of test you could get on a human body. Oh a tiny weeny heart attack.

To find out he had pnuemonia.

He didn't know he was in some Lewis Carroll dream.

So I folded up like a pretzel in a chair in the ICU units to cat nap, working for sometimes 18 hours a day, walking from one end to another of the hospital. I texted his sister every time he moved. Held calls in the ICU halls, set up interviews in elevators and argued with future clients in Waffle House parking lots. None of my clients knew, for they were my sanity. Not many of my friends knew. I know I probably am making some of you mad, but I had to keep it close.

Hubby didn't wanna go anywhere that day. He didn't want to spend New Year's Eve at Kaiser's urgent care so we waited til Jan 1 still fought me on it. Finally he began look ashen and I said we're going. Last thing I told him was I love you.

He had to go Kennestone - the few minutes extra to KP approved Northside would've killed him.
The last thing the Kaiser doctor said was he's septic.
They sealed off his room for 5 days in case he was contagious. Just in case.
I went in anyways. I am a rebel you know.
The first thing the ICU nurse said, was he will be fine.
I knew how to read all the screens of all 15 machines in his room.

He didn't know he was in some Lewis Carroll dream.

The first and last thing I told him each time I saw him was I love you.
He had every machine in the room with him, a cooling blanket, boxing gloves to keep from pulling the cords out, he was a House episode, he was in MASH, he was in Dr Jane Medicine Woman, he was Robin Williams in Patches.

All roads lead to Rome right? MacLand to Hardy Parkway to Smith to 101 to Kindred in Rome, GA. They got him off the trachea and his lungs got better after just 10 days. Drove 100 miles a day.

But he was gonna be fine. So was I.

I sang to Mariah Carey's O Holy Night about every day for a month after Christmas.
When little things happened to him I listened to Joy to the World.
I turned off the TV for over a month. I read the news on Twitter.

He thought that Jan 15 was really Jan 3 - see he was in a medically induced coma for 15 days dreaming about Alice In Wonderland. Propofal is a wonder drug - for it makes you forget everything but dream about anything.

Nest time you feel like you have the flu, you probably don't, you probably have bi-lateral pneumonia with a staph infection.

Lucky for him, I am the best mean nurse in town.