PROGRESS ?   Leave a comment

I’m not sure if you could call this progress.  Moving forward maybe.  Positive movement might even be a better, more accurate phrase.

I have to downsize.  Without my husband’s income I can’t continue living where I am, I have to move to a place that is smaller.  This will be the THIRD TIME I’ve had to downsize in the past eight years.  Before I got married last year I had gotten rid of literally over half the things I owned. Then we got married and we bought a lot of things together. New dishes. New silverware.  New pots and pans. Rugs.  Bookcases.

And now I have to get rid of at least 1/3 of all that.  The first two weeks after Randy passed away it was so sad and depressing for me to even think about getting rid of this stuff.  I was mad and upset and sad that I had to downsize.  AGAIN.

Eventually, after most of the emotions had passed, I was able to talk to God about it.  A lot, actually.  And I finally received His peace.  It was there all along, waiting for me.  But I had to come to that point where I accepted it.

So I have been packing, and hauling boxes to Goodwill.  Then I pack some more, and make another trip.  I have sold some things, and given away some things.  And you know what?  I feel better. So I asked myself: “Self, why do you feel better?”  And I think it is because I do not feel like a helpless victim of my circumstances. Rather, I am taking responsibility and doing something about my situation.  I am taking positive steps to making my life better and live somewhere I can afford.

And in the meantime, I have been able to bless people with what I gave away and what I have sold.  I have had to make tough choices on what to give away, but I am keeping all the things that 1) I need and 2) are important to me.  Not only that, but the $4,500 or so in debt I found out I was in from unpaid bills is almost totally taken care of.  And that, people, is GOD.  No other way to explain all the events that had to take place, all the things that had to fall into place, so that all that debt would be paid.

Thank you, God, for being patient with me.  I don’t know how you do it, but I am glad you do. Thank you for being my provider, my rock, my fortress, my very foundation.  To you be all glory and honor and praise.

Posted May 10, 2016 by Maureen in Christian, Married Musings, Uncategorized

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As Well As I Can   1 comment

I’m still breathing in and out. Still going through each day.  Sometimes I can take a whole day at a time, other times I can only do half a day.  Or less.

There have been financial challenges since my husband passed.  I try not to worry about them, try not to fret, try not to carry those cares around with me and bring them to bed.  It is a struggle!  I have great faith that God will take care of me and provide for me, but I am a responsible person and believe in paying my bills, and when I am faced with a huge amount of them I feel bad that I can’t pay all of them right away.

In the meantime, God has provided an insurance policy from my union that I had no idea was even a possibility.  God has provided a check for $100 from missionary friends of mine.  They are having their own health and financial struggles, yet they sent me a check.  God has provided me a $1,000 one month reduction in rent from my property management company.  (Now if that isn’t God than I don’t know how else to explain them doing that!!)

God is watching out for this widow.  God is providing and will provide for me.  It is promised in the Bible and I believe it.  But I miss my most wonderful husband, and I am sad.  So, I am doing as well as I can, and having faith as much as I can right now.

Posted May 4, 2016 by Maureen in Christian, Married Musings

Still Breathing In and Out   Leave a comment

My husband’s service was last Saturday.  For days beforehand, and all day that day until 1:00 pm I kept saying to myself, “I DON’T want to do this!”  But I did.  Because he was only going to get one memorial service, and I wanted to do it right.  And it was done right.  It was a fitting, moving, unique memorial of his life and the person he was.  And we had lots of food afterwards, which he would have enjoyed very much.

I was totally spent the next day.  And the day after, truth be told.  Not only sad and feeling the loss, but drained from all the emotions of Saturday.  And yet God gave me strength.  He gives me strength.  Just enough to get through each day.

On the Friday before the memorial, my little sister sent me flowers via FedEx.  It was a dozen of the same kind of orchids I had in my wedding bouquet.  I burst into tears when I opened the package.  Sad, but also very happy memories.  I so appreciated her doing that, and remembering me and my husband that way.  Monday, after a long day and being very very tired emotionally and physically, I got an email out of the blue from the property management company that runs the apartment complex where I live.  “Maureen,” the email said, “we don’t want you to worry about anything.  Next month we’ve taken $1,000 off your rent.”  Who DOES that?  I never asked them to do something like that — never even thought to ask for that.  But God knew.  God does stuff like that.

I saw a friend at work this week.  She had never met my husband, but she knew me and had been very happy about my engagement and then marriage.  She gave me a sad smile, and then just hugged me. That’s it.  She didn’t say anything, she just gave me a big hug.  I’ve had people at church come up and take my hand and tell me, “I know what you are going through – I lost my spouse.”  And that is all they say.  Just that.  That is all that is needed.

I’ve been getting cards in the mail from people.  I know a couple that have been missionaries to orphans and widows all over the world.  They have a terrific ministry and I have been on three missions trips with their group.  I know them personally and have been in their home.  They sent me a lovely card …. and a check for $100.

I’m moving from strength to strength, taking each day in whatever sized chunk I can handle at a time.  Resting in God’s grace and His foundation.

Posted April 29, 2016 by Maureen in Christian, Married Musings

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Struggle   Leave a comment

Every day since my most wonderful husband passed away has been a struggle.  I feel like I am in a horrible, deja-vu, unreal nightmare.

I met with my Pastor this week and we went over the service and also where tables would be laid out for the reception.  It made me so sad.  I kept saying to myself, “I don’t want to do this.  I don’t want to do this.”  And yet – this is the only memorial service My Randy will have.  I want to do it right.  So I made decisions and I made choices and I am doing the things I have to do.

I will have to move out of our apartment, which has caused a lot of stress and anxiety in me.  Our property management company is being very nice and accommodating and I won’t have to move until this summer.  I have been reminded again of how God has always looked after me and taken care of me.  He has always provided, just what I needed, when I need it.  Sometimes my flesh gets in the way and I stress or get anxious, but the steady, unchanging, persistent love of God never leaves me and I find myself resting on that rock.

I don’t want to be a widow. I don’t want to be alone.  I want my Randy back.  But things don’t always turn out the way we want them.  Things happen, life changes, time moves on.  I just cling to my rock, and hold onto my faith in the great creator and provider, and I get by day by day.

Posted April 16, 2016 by Maureen in Married Musings

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Gone   Leave a comment

My sweet Randy, my love, is gone.  He had a heart attack and died suddenly on April 6th.

I am …. lost.  It still does not seem real.  I know it will at some point.  I will have to go through his clothes.  Distribute some things to his family.  Pick up the death certificate.  Have the memorial service.  Hundreds of details and little things that, when I complete them, will cement, little by little, that my Randy is gone.

My son was killed 15 1/2 years ago, and now I am experiencing the same kinds of things again in a horrible, nighmareish deja-vu kind of way.  The crying jags.  The aimless wandering.  The sleepless nights.  The crushing sense of loss.  The feeling that you’ve forgotten something, and then the terrible realization that it is because you don’t have that person in your life anymore.  The thinking to yourself “I have to remember to tell Randy about that”, and then the remembering that you can’t anymore.

I want to find a hole to crawl in and then just stay there.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases

His mercies never come to an end

They are new every morning, new every morning

Great is your faithfulness, oh God

Great is your faithfulness

My rock, my foundation is God.  He never fails, he never leaves, he always loves and provides.   Though I long to leave this earth and its sadness and loss, I know the Lord will take me when it is His time.  Until then I will keep breathing in and out and putting one foot before the other.

Posted April 9, 2016 by Maureen in Christian

Another Day   Leave a comment

I’ve barely gotten any sleep for three days.  I will probably be almost brain dead by the time I get home tonight, but this morning I am feeling ok since I just finished 1-1/2 cups of pretty strong coffee.

My husband is a night owl.  I am a morning person.  Most of the time we make that work for us, but sometimes his insomnia or worries or physical things going on in his body keep him awake until 4:00 am.  When he comes to bed I immediately go – PING – wide awake.  I don’t know why, that is just the way it happens.  So I’ll cuddle with him and pray for him and us, trying to get back to sleep, but while he falls asleep almost immediately I just get more and more awake.

Such are the follies of married life.  I still wouldn’t trade it for the single life.  Nope.

And, here is an embroidery I finished.  I wanted to do something to remember our wedding.  I worked a long time with my husband on the lettering and colors and border.  Changed my mind several times on various things.  Sure, some of the stitching is wonky.  I never claimed to be perfect.  But I had a really good time sewing this and I am very happy with the results.  We still have to get it matted and framed, of course.

God bless you in your day.

Finished Monogram

Posted March 2, 2016 by Maureen in Christian, Married Musings

Dreams Unfulfilled   1 comment

Two bloggers I follow recently wrote of their separate searches to get back to what was really important in their lives, and what their passions were.  They had gotten off track, had drifted away, and made compromises and excuses along the way and were not following their original passions.

Each blogger’s experience was unique and they each wrote about their experiences very well.  Both have continued to blog about how well (or not) they are changing things so their original passions are more at the forefront of their lives and priorities.

I applaud their efforts and desires.  The big difference between them and me?  They are not Christians. It got me thinking of my own original passions.  Do you know – not one of them has been fulfilled.  Not one of them has come to pass.

A dream, a passion I have had for as long as I can remember, was to be a philanthropist.  I have never had enough money to do that, though I have given where and when I could.

Another deep-help passion of mine has been to train and raise service dogs.  I have never owned a dog.  Until the past 7 years, I never lived in a place where I could even have a dog.  I am now married to a man who prefers cats — he doesn’t want a dog.

One other long-held dream of mine was to become a camerawoman.  Maybe not on movies at exotic locations; maybe just a TV show.  But I was always very interested in doing that job.  That, too, I have never done.

I dedicated many years of my life to raising my son.  After he was killed I did fulfill a long-term dream of mine and worked toward my B.A. degree.  It took me 7 1/2 years, but I paid for it myself while working full time and graduated suma cum laude.  I have pursued and gotten jobs I wanted.  I have traveled and I have hobbies, some of which I am pretty good at.

I encourage and applaud anyone who pursues a dream or passion.  Even one they have to take up after perhaps leaving it behind for a long time.  I have talked to God about my dreams and passions.  And I am convinced that though I may never know why, I can rest assured that God’s plan for my life was best for me and there were reasons why I never became a philanthropist, dog trainer, or camerawoman.  God was with me every step of the way through all the things I have done and learned and the interests and hobbies and passions I have pursued during my life.

I am content with what I have and the goals I have reached.  God is good — all the time.  His plan is best for me.  What about you?

Posted February 13, 2016 by Maureen in Christian, Musings

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