Monday, August 20, 2018

This Alone Life

I enjoyed my 1450 mile road trip to Boise. It was the first time I've traveled up through northern Nevada and I liked seeing the different landscapes along the way. Got to see places I heard about while working at the Water District/Authority ... Pahranagat Valley, Warm Springs Natural Area, Coyote Springs, Ely and some of the ranches.  Although I got to see most of those only because I missed the turn off for 93N off I-15 and ended up going about 20 miles out of my way. Serendipity, I guess. Or construction having removed the 93N sign and I didn't know Exit 64 was what I should have been looking for.

No weather impacts, but did have some dust devils and heavy wind gusts along those barren stretches of highway. They didn't impact me nearly as much as the semi I was following. It was a bit scary seeing him weave back and forth across the road until I realized what had caused it when I hit it. I passed him at the first available moment. Grateful that my new CRV has fabulous 'get up and go' as I learned whenever I was passing a semi, camper and car altogether. Passing on a 2-lane road has always scared me, so when I do it just picture me white-knuckled, holding my breath with pedal to the metal. Zoom!  90mph in a flash! Maybe that's why my hands and arms are sore today.

You see, Vern was always the driver. Always. And I was a rather excellent navigator, if I do say so myself. Well ... he might have said I was an excellent navigator AND random stopper. I kept us on the right roads, but often yelled 'stop!' and he knew that just meant he needed to find a place to pull over so I could take a closer look at something or pull out my camera and take a photo.

So I missed him on this trip. A lot. I couldn't rest my head on his shoulder. Or hold his hand. Just that constant contact and touch, as we always did when we were in the car together. I had to do all of the driving, stay alert ... because he was not there. Well I did do one thing we used to do together ... sing loudly along with all of the songs on the radio. Thank you, Sirius, for being available the whole time.

I can do hard things. I know that. I've done that. Many, many times. But I don't think this alone life will ever get 'easy'. I miss being cherished, loved, missed, valued. Sure, I share on Facebook and here in my blog. I share a lot. Often, too much. But believe it or not, I do not share everything. Not at all everything. And that hurts my heart as I face the fact that this is my life. This. is. it.  So I have to find a way to get used to it. Somehow.

This was a slide used by one of the Brave Girls Symposium presenters.
Not widow-related. But it sure speaks well for me today.
Don't get me wrong. I know I have a good life. I'm happy. Most of the time. And I'm grateful I can do the things that I do. I hope I can continue to do these things for another 20-30 years. But .... I sure do miss being able to do these things with my guy. Sigh. Perhaps this is hitting me hard today because I'm tired. Went to bed at 8pm last night but I woke up every 2 hours and gave up at 3:30am. And this Thursday would have been our 49th wedding anniversary. I need to figure out 49 acts of kindness I can do that day.

An important note to my married friends .... Yes, I admit that I do get a tiny pang of jealousy whenever you post your 'together' photos but please keep taking and posting those photos - lots of them! Treasure each and every moment you have together.  Please. do. this.

Brave Girl Symposium was amazing. I learned a lot ... a lot that will help me when today's little pity party takes a hike. I'll write a blog post about it. But not today.  I have always advised my widowed friends to "feel what you feel when you feel it" and that applies to me at almost 8 years out as well as to someone who has just joined our widowed tribe. It will pass. It always does.

If you'd like to see some photos from my trip you can view them on my Facebook page. Don't think you even need to be 'on' Facebook since my profile is public. Here's a link to my page and just click on Photos and go to the 'Road Trip to Boise and Brave Girl Symposium' album.


Patience said...

I love your blog posts, Dianne! You inspire me, and I'll always remember my and Kelley's 1200 mile (both ways) trip to Myrtle Beach in 2013! Thanks to you and Soaring Spirits, I've come a long way since then!


Rene said...

Jeff and I used to sing as loud as we could in the car too! Fun memories. Thanks for your thoughts; agree, agree!!