It’s not like me to insert a period in titles. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever done it. To me, a period represents finality, permanency – the end of a story. For this reason, I found it fitting to do so today. I hope everyone ‘gets’ my wording this post as if I were having a conversation with David – it’s just something I need to do. Somehow, some way… I feel he will see this. I do hope I’m right, because I never got to say goodbye to him.
The last time we spoke was mid-July, this abominable year of 2020. It was then you told me your arthritis was so bad you had to leave your job for good. I feel in my soul that this killed a big part of you, though you didn’t say it at the time.
We’d first met in junior high school and became friends. Later in adulthood, fate made us family by way of us each marrying a sister and brother. “Small world”, as they say. We went through much in life while being there for each other. Funerals, weddings, lifes ups and downs. Now your own funeral will be in a few days. As the tears fall, I try to come to grips with the fact I’ll never have you in my life down here anymore.
If there were a destiny meant for you down here – it was you being a Father. Brittany and Leanne, your two beautiful daughters, were your everlasting sunshine in an often bleak and gray world. You relished and appreciated both, spending every spare second with them. I often told you your smile was never bigger than when you had them with you. “Dad Day!!”, you would call it. I can’t imagine two daughters having a better dad. I am so glad they had YOU.
Although not related by blood, you were the closest thing to a brother I ever had in this life down here. Each being ‘only children’, I issued you that rightful Brother title shortly after the ending of my 21-year marriage. You often laughed at me for it, but knew deep down it’s what I considered you. We went from being ‘in-laws’ to just brother and sister. Many conversations of what we both endured over the course of each of our marriages strengthened our bond throughout the years. I confided in you with 100% trust – knowing you understood, empathized, and would never share any of my secrets. I will SO miss this, David. I already do.
We used to talk about wishing for a sibling in life, which I suppose many ‘only children’ do. I knew losing your Mom and Dad early in life had to be very hard on you, you’d tell me often how much you missed them. I’ll never forget the day you called me at work a couple years back, I immediately thought something was wrong since you never called me there. Through tears, you told me you’d just found out you had a sister you never knew about. I was thinking, I’d never heard you cry before. Those were tears of joy, of course! You were so very happy… a sister you never knew about. You’d said you instinctively called ME to share the news. I now have to admit David, there was a twinge of jealousy there. Perhaps you realized this when at the end of the conversation I said, “I’M still your sister, always remember that”. I do think you picked up on that little green factor.
You constantly reminded me of how lucky Keith and I were to have found each other. I can tell you, he loved you too – very much. Guys don’t make a habit of telling each other that, so I want to make sure you know. Life isn’t always fair. As your sister, I was always trying to find you a ‘forever mate’. God knows, you didn’t need any help in that area. But, I never stopped trying. I wanted that “forever” for you that I knew in my heart you wanted, too. So, please forgive me for my antics in that area. Especially for some of the heartbreak it brought you along the way.
Lord, how you loved my sausage gravy biscuits. When you and Brandy would stay over with Keith and I, I’d make sure you had some to take home for later. I’m sure your faithful brown lab Brandy got some too. You also loved my chili (hope those weren’t just your kind words). Due to some constraints, I’d struggled with true home cooking until later in life, but you always made me feel like I was good at it.
I don’t want to close this. Dammit, David. I miss you… already.
Our dear friend Angie will forgive me for this – you loved Angie so. After her Mama’s funeral which we’d both gotten lost en route to, at your insistence I followed you back to Charlotte. We talked on the phone while listening to our favorite tunes, flying down the country roads. Back in town, we drag raced via interstate for over twenty miles at completely foolish speeds. I’d never driven that fast in my life… I wonder if you had, as well. You told me later that was the most free you’d felt in your entire life. I felt it too. Guess adrenaline’ll do that to you, especially us old farts.
Go and be free, brother. Until that beautiful reunion. Know that your sister loves you so. Forever.
Even with the passage of many years… I guess there are some things that really don’t change.
Just when you think you’ve got it all figured out.
For an enhanced viewing experience, ⬆ just click the play arrow above!
And guess what… WE DID IT!!
What started out as any other beautiful sunny September day slowly and surely graduated to rain as the evening fell. Ah, well. Thank goodness for that glorious Plan B, which is one big reason we chose this particular venue. Besides, a little rain never hurt nothin’.
The original plan was to be married by the lake in front of a beautifully draped alter adorned with hanging crystals to reflect the sun and water. As it turns out, we wed indoors in front of the fireplace – nonetheless very beautiful in it’s own unique way. (And believe me, I’ll find a fanciful DIY project with which to use the hanging crystals and reams of unused alter material!)
In addition, I’ll always have the memory of that beautiful sunset night at rehearsal.
While our real pictures are pending final edits from the photog, we’re currently depending on the ones our friends and family have so graciously supplied.
This man has made my dreams come true. Speaking of which, after the ceremony we danced back down the aisle to our chosen recessional “You Make My Dreams Come True” by Hall & Oates, with everyone behind us following suit. I consider it my very own True Romance. Hey, Tarantino… can ya top that one?
My post is simple today, though indeed thought-provoking. Below would be my number one pick of all Bob Marley’s quotes. The amount of love that erupts from this one wise paragraph has always overwhelmed me. Even so, I never could grasp the full intensity of it – just the intense yearning to someday find this beautiful kind of unconditional love. One without judgement, one that makes you want to learn new things, one that makes you feel beautiful, one where you openly invite vulnerability into your life. One Love.
Hope you enjoy.
Keith’s father’s wedding was this past weekend, and it was a beautiful ceremony centered completely around love. My future sister and her husband hosted a lovely reception at their house afterwards, which was so enjoyable. Keith’s side of the family is very kind and loving, so the time we enjoy with them is always priceless.
The older I get, the more cognizant and appreciative I am of incessant acts of selflessness. Every good thing I witness reminds me to try and be a better person. I look at it as a sort of pay-it-forward view on life, for lack of a better term.
The priest officiating the ceremony spoke about the sanctity of marriage and how you wake up each morning with the goal of putting your spouse’s needs before your own. Just because of that thing called Love. Because that’s what real love does, you want to give as much as possible when you love someone that much. It’s a mutual respect between each other that is never ending – it’s not something that changes with passing time.
When dinner time came, we stood back and waited on others to get theirs. I’ve always preferred to get my plate after everyone else has gotten theirs, never first or even middle. Keith attempted to hand me an empty plate and usher me in line. I politely refused, telling him I’d rather wait. He went on about midway through and filled his plate, while I stood conversing with a few family members. A few moments later Keith stood smiling in front of me, presenting me with a large plate of food. What he had just gotten was for me.
Now I know this might not sound like a monumental act of kindness to some, but to me it speaks volumes as to the type of man he is. This is Keith, every day. Even after four years, he’s constantly putting my needs above his own, as I do his. When I wake up every morning, he’s the first thing I think about. He’s the last thing I think about before I fall asleep. We both hold a strong mutual respect for each other. Our time apart at the beginning of the year only served to make us stronger, resulting in deeper devotion to each other as one whole. As it should be. As it always will be…
Have I mentioned we can’t wait for September to roll around?
I went to see the new Nicholas Sparks movie Safe Haven over the weekend. There’s something about Sparks’ books and movies that have always drawn me to them – I’m fairly certain the ever-hopeless romantic in me would be the biggest reason. I also love being able to closely relate with the locality he incorporates into his stories. Sparks is from New Bern, NC and he always chooses a place within close proximity to his hometown for the story’s local. Safe Haven was filmed in the coastal town of Southport, NC – a town that’s dear to my heart. We used to vacation at the beach right up from Southport, and even rode the same ferry they took in the movie when we visited the Southport Aquarium.
Although a little slow… it was a good movie. I have this terrible knack of comparing all of Sparks’ story lines with The Notebook, which set the bar at an unprecedented height for any subsequently written stories.
Back in 2008 when I began my journey to build a new life, I adorned the theater on three separate occasions to see Nights in Rodanthe. My girlfriends teased me relentlessly for this – but that movie was (and still is) mesmerizing to me. I related so closely with it for several reasons; the middle age of the characters, the setting of the beautiful Outer Banks beach with the horses, and the fact that, from time to time, love can in fact resurface it’s pretty little head for a second chance. To this day, Nights in Rodanthe still remains one of my favorites. I even followed the real-life story of the house (Serendipity) being relocated to a safer location to avoid erosion from the ocean a few years back. I’d wished for the opportunity to visit it in person before that happened.
Two steps forward, three steps back, as they say. There is an absolute downside of being a romantic at heart. Combine said trait with a Pisces nature and a breakup and (BAM!) it can quite literally be a recipe for disaster. I know I need to get my head out of the clouds for a moment and realize there is nothing perfect out there – nor are there any fairytales, as much as I’d love to believe there are. I guess if I had to sum total it all in a nutshell… hope is what I derive from these stories.
And I’m always up for a little bit of that.
It took me a month to pack and less than a week to unpack. For some reason, I’ve always struggled with packing. Not just with moving, but with packing for a trip or vacation as well. It’s always easy for me to unpack and stick the stuff back in it’s respectful places – but gathering items and organizing them in boxes is hard for me. I think it’s largely due to my ocd about categorizing things. I also tend to want to clean out when I’m packing… I’ll abandon a box and go in search of other ‘like’ items to combine with it. Before I know it, an hour has passed and I’m still on the same box.
This got me thinking about life in general. I don’t necessarily have issues with making a change – I am a Pisces, after all. If a Pisces isn’t comfortable with the direction their life is headed, it’s a well-known fact that they will simply disappear or swim away in the other direction. That’s not to say that finding the courage to actually make that change is easy. Once the change is made however, my organizational skills are unmatched. If I can say one positive thing about myself, it’s my ability to organize – once the deed is done, so to speak.
It’s slowly beginning to dawn on me how much of myself I put into a relationship. It would also seem that I’m easily replaceable. Over the past several years I’ve lost a huge chunk of me that I’m now struggling to find again, and it’s frustrating. I must give myself time and patience in this endeavor, in as much as time passed through which I allowed that loss.
But guess what? I’ve already started.
It seems to be the hardest thing to ditch, this transition from the plural “us/we” to singular “I/me”. This morning I was telling a neighbor about the discipline training “we’d” gotten for Mojo. I recognized my blunder as soon as it came out of my mouth, and walked away feeling awkward.
Right now I’m angry. I hate admitting it, but I am. As I look back on the mistakes I’ve made, I’m angry at myself for being so naive. I’m angry for staying, for believing, for surrendering my whole heart to someone who didn’t appreciate it for what it was worth, for holding out hope, and for all the wasted time. I’m angry at him for being such a damn good receiver. For the lack of communication, for the broken promises when the hand of communication was forced, and for the sheer selfishness that made him, well – him. I’m angry at him for not even once asking me to stay. It stands to reason that I have been played for a genuine fool.
There are some hard lessons to learn in life. Sometimes that one ‘sure thing’ that feels so certain turns out to be the devil himself dressed in a thin veil. As my dear uncle used to say – such is life, I suppose.
One thing’s for certain – the walls surrounding this ticker will be rock-solid from here on out.
Right before bedtime last night, I found out another friend of mine had gotten engaged. I’m uber-happy for her because, well, because she’s a wonderful person and she deserves it. She has three years invested with this man, and they both know full well what they’re getting into. Isn’t her ring absolutely gorgeous??
Which got me thinking (uh-oh). Three years. That’s almost how long I have invested. Don’t worry, I’m not going there again. Oops… guess I just did.
That dreaded Kenny Rogers song has been ringing in my head all morning, so I thought I’d do you all a favor and put it in your heads too.
“You gotta know when to hold ’em… know when to fold ’em… know when to walk away, and know when to run. You never count your money… when you’re sittin’ at the table – they’ll be time enough for countin’… when the dealin’s done.”
Being as how I wrote about it in length last August, I’ll just reiterate the fact that I’m happy beyond words and leave it at that. If you have any desire to hear me gush on about it, you can read last year’s post.
I just bought his anniversary present today. Wish I could say what it is in this post – but on the off-chance of him reading this, I’d be screwed (I’ll be sure to fill ya in later). I hope he likes it.
It really is the little things in life that count. Like being together and making memories. Experiencing the overwhelming feeling of complete love and trust. Just being happy. Actually, I consider being happy a huge thing…
I was recently told that a friend of mine’s father now tells him he loves him before they hang up. It comes at a time later in life for him, but I realize how much it must mean to finally hear his father say I love you after all these years. It’s definitely better late than never.
I tell my close friends I love you before we part ways or hang up. I tell my mother and father I love you every night before we end the call. Of course, I tell Keith I love you more times per day than I care to count. I tell my beloved little Camille I love you before I leave her to go to work.
It’s three simple words that mean so very much. It feels good to say them, and it gives the recipient a feeling of such worth. If you feel it, it’s okay to say it. If it feels awkward that first time, no worries – that’ll fade quickly.
Can you say it too much or too often? Is it ever overused? I don’t believe so. Nah – not at all.
Recently I came across a video that made quite an impression on me, and I’d like to share it with you this morning. Most of you already know that I’m one of the world’s biggest romantics. In fact, I thought I might be the biggest – up until now.
If you haven’t seen this… please take a few quiet minutes and check it out. It’s filled my heart with such joy. The story of Danny and Annie Perasa — how they met, and how they stayed in love for twenty-seven years — continues to inspire those who hear it. You can read more about them here.
And yes, this kind of love is still out there. Amazing.
I’m eagerly anticipating the weekend more than I can even say. I don’t have anything planned – no places to be at or people to visit. Just a couple of free days to spend with the man I love so very much. (Sigh) If I were to allow myself, I could easily get lost in writing about how I feel about him. I’m so thankful for a second chance at love and happiness in life, and realize how very lucky I am to have found him.
A friend and I were talking about love and relationships in general the other day. It’s funny how when you’re in the beginning-to-mid stages of a relationship, your own ‘me time‘ is important to have. ‘Me time‘ is essential to a healthy relationship. Here’s the thing – for quite a while now I’ve found that during my me time, all I think about is when I’ll see him again. Oh I know, I’ve got it bad. You just hush now, Bon.
Happy weekend, everyone – and blessings to all.
Sitting in front of the Atlantic ocean writing a blog has just now become one of my favorite things to do. My love is beside me, as well as a cooler full of cold beers… and waves are crashing so rhythmically that it’s a sound finer than that of any music I’ve ever heard.
I stole the idea from Perpetually Peeved to keep track of blog ideas via the ‘notes’ app on my iPhone. Works pretty well… although mine are far less interesting than hers. Here’s what I have so far, in raw form:
• People wading around in the cold ocean, and swimming in the unheated pool.
• Old couple walking the dog with the ball in his mouth the whole time.
• Beautiful bright spinning star that changes colors (Sirius).
• ‘Beetlejuice’ star that is constantly red, part of the constellation ‘Orion’ the Hunter.
• Waiting for a prettier shell to come along.
There’s more that packed this already jumbled head but I’m still trying to get the hang of jotting things down before I forget! It’s not fun maneuvering a blog around via a phone, so I’ll end this with an attempt to load a picture.
Blessings to all for a wonderful weekend!!
It’s gonna be that ‘great kind of weekend’. Got a room reserved waiting for us at the beach, just need to get down there. Only flip flops shall adorn these feet this weekend, as I’m not taking any other kind of shoes. Well, maybe I will take some tennies – but as a last of the season rebellion I’ll strive hard not to wear them.
Hope everyone has a beautiful and blessed weekend…
She loves it so
her natural habitat, the current and waves
a bond that could never be broken
Clear turquoise water
flows through her gills
tepid and calm, and she’s free
Yet thoroughly enveloped.
This beautiful realm, her armor
no worries, no pain; no sorrows, no strife
dangers prevalent, instincts trusted
Abundant sustenance, no rich, no poor
no lies, no deception
beauty thrives in every direction
and time is never defined.
The fish is me. The current, Keith.
I had a meaningful conversation with a coworker this morning. This guy is good as gold – case in point, he initially came in offering a bunch of cans of Progresso soup that he’d gotten in a terrific sale for a buck each. I’m thinking he must’ve bought the entire store out yesterday. I jokingly told him that with the fifty dollars worth he brought in this morning alone, his trunk must’ve been dragging the asphalt! After work today, he’s going back to buy more, and he’s planning to stock it here for other’s lunches that might be without.
While in the kitchen fixing up the morning caffeine, he talked about his kids and how they were doing in school, and how hard math was for his son. He asked if my daughter was my only one and I told him yes. He asked if it was hard for me and my husband while she was in school, when she started dating, etc., to which I replied extremely – but that I had tremendous respect for others like his self who had two and three kids in school simultaneously. Looking back on that time in life, I guess we had it pretty easy.
He asked me how long I’d been married and that it must have been hard for it to end. I agreed and said it was the absolute hardest thing EVER. That it’s easy for someone to say they understand – but it’s a pain that can only be understood by someone who has been through it their own self. That I used to be that person on the other side, saying I understood. That I’m ashamed of the fact I used to think ‘gosh, why don’t they snap out of it already?’. That because you left doesn’t always mean you wanted it to end. That it can take literally years of work to get through it. That if you were truly emotionally invested in a long-term marriage, then working through the ending of it probably will take years.
After hearing all this, he was probably sorry he’d even asked. But he always has been a good listener. 🙂
In the years we’ve all known him here, it’s always been obvious how much this guy loves his family – his wife and kids are his world. When he speaks of his wife, he does so with a gleam in his eye. The level of appreciation and respect they have together is very apparent. As we started back to work, I told him to never lose that love and respect – to hold on to it… cherish it. To which he replied with a smile, ‘I tell my wife I love her ten times a day, or more. I won’t lose it.’ Hearing that put a smile on my face the whole walk back to my desk.
I feel the need to rant today, because… well I don’t really have any other material. So welcome to Life of Bon – Curmudgeon at Large.
The boyfriend and I went out for Mexican last night at our favorite little local restaurant. We noticed as soon as we walked in that the place was dead – both inside and outside on the deck. Seeing as how the weather was so very balmy, we decided to dine outside on the huge covered deck.
A sweet little guy brings out the chips, K orders his usual stout mug of beer, and I a nice glass of merlot. The sky is a Carolina blue outside, it’s warm, and the company is beyond excellent. Beer is cold, wine is perfectly tempered, salsa is hot…
Life is good.
Enter couple with two screaming kids, who are ushered out onto the deck and promptly seated at the table directly behind us. Not at another end, not a couple of tables down even, but less than a foot behind me at the very table that backed ours. Before I continue, let me clarify that I DO NOT hate small children. NOR was it these people’s fault that they were seated where they were.
What I AM saying is the restaurant staff should know to insert at least a little space between two different sets of people with totally different scenarios…
Setting One: A couple, obviously not married, no wedding rings; in love nonetheless, once again obvious from their holding hands across the alcoholic beverage-adorned table. From the way the two are gazing at each other, they could quite possibly be the only ones existing within their own little world.
Setting Two: A couple, very obviously married from flash of wedding rings, arguing loudly while walking to their table; she with huge diaper bag over shoulder of one arm, toddler in the other, he with larger kid in tow – all proceeding to light up the entire existence with their extra-amplified voices. Birds outside are scurrying to take flight before the earthquake ensues.
Again, not their fault they were seated where they were seated. We proceed to try and continue enjoying our dinner out, when lo and behold – another thunderous approach. This new “group” has four, count ’em four, kids that resemble stair steps. The one being carried by Daddy is already crying and proceeds to whine and cry the entire dinner. So just where do these kind patrons get seated? This time, how about the table directly beside us.
At this point, nothing would have surprised us. Or so I thought.
Within the next ten minutes (our food hadn’t even arrived yet) two more sets of people with kids were ushered in (or should I say out?) and seated – ALL within the only ‘general vicinity’ that was left around us. We were now completely surrounded. At this point, we’re both feeling as out of place as a hunter might feel onstage at a PETA gathering. It was surely hilarious by this point – but the hilarity of it all was cut short due to a little girl seated at the table directly ahead of us falling backwards out of her chair. Everyone froze after hearing the sound of her head hitting the floor. You know that delayed reaction with kids when they have to *inhale gasp* in order to get their breath before the initial screams escape? Hers lasted about 10 whole seconds. She ended up being okay, and even played it up later by grinning at us as she ‘limped’ off the deck when leaving. (Hey kid, I thought you hit your head?)
Where’s the Tylenol. And Tequila.