Sitting here with what?
Another cup of coffee 😉😍
*Everyone knows that I love coffee.
I love the smell.
The anticipation of that first sip, with every cup.
I will drink coffee in the morning, or at night.
As well as any time in the day.
Someone asked me recently, who are you?
As in, what are you like?
*Depending on who you talk to, LOL, I am compassionate, loving, generous, responsible, humble, spiritual, inspirational, easy to talk to, and down to earth.
I have been accused of being too emotional. Too generous. Too sensitive. Too dreamy. Too stubborn. Too restless. Too distracted. Too impulsive.
I know that I have been guilty of creating my own obstacles, and caring way more than I should of what others think or say about me.
*Finding myself in the darkness of this journey as a widow has been a misadventure in mistakes, missteps and just plain messes!
Little by little, layer by layer, I am finding ME.
The same ME as I have always been - but a different ME.
Every experience changes us.
Molds us. (just hoping it doesn't make me moldy!)
Nothing has changed me as much as becoming a widow.
*Before, when I was a wife - I was strong, independent, confidant, assured.
And totally, absolutely, wrapped up in Rick.
He was my strength.
He was the one that stood for my independence.
Having told me when we got married that I could go where I wanted, do what I wanted, wear what I wanted, say what I wanted - because he was strong enough, big enough, bad enough, to back me up 110%!
He was the one that gave me confidence.
My assurance lay squarely on, and in, him.
Ricky Lee McCoy.
And when he was taken by death, everything I was - well, it was taken too.
I was left with a pile of rubble and ashes.
Overwhelmed doesn’t even begin to describe how I felt.
I have seen pictures of the destruction left by F3 - F5 tornadoes.
I have seen the devastation after the 100 year floods.
I have seen the piles of rubble and ashes after fires.
And I have felt it deep within my soul.
On the outside, my life didn’t look all that much different - at least most of the time.
But on the inside?
Different is a word that lacks in depth.
Everything I had known for 35 years was changed.
From how I sleep, to when I get up.
What I do when I wake up, and how I get ready for bed.
Waking up in the night.
Going back to sleep after waking up.
Cooking and eating.
Watching TV, movies.
Even reading a book.
What I wear.
How I fix my hair.
Having to learn how to be somewhere, without him.
Having to learn how to parent, and grandparent, without him.
Not one thing in my life remained the same - without Rick.
Family and friends turned away.
Out of frustration with my choices and decisions?
Because it made them more comfortable with their own grief to push away from me?
I don’t know.
But it happened.
Financially, I was ruined when Rick died.
Regardless of the rumors and words that still float around after all these years - that Rick left me well off.
I begged him for years to buy life insurance. Showed him time after time that we could afford it.
Always saying that to buy life insurance was almost a guarantee that he would die.
We had no savings left.
- What we had before he was forced to stop working, we used in those last 3 years.
- Just to live.
- To buy groceries.
- To put fuel in the truck for doctor’s appointments.
- To pay a few bills.
Without his disability check coming in each month, I was left with $0 income.
Social Security did give me a check when he died - $255, which was sent directly to the funeral home.
I never even saw it.
We were living in his parent’s home place when he died.
It didn’t belong to us.
My vehicle was being paid for monthly, but unknown to us, the underwriters had declined the credit life insurance - so, it was taken from me for non-payment.
- Which I learned later that it would have been taken from me anyway, because I was not on the loan - and they would not accept payment without the check being signed by him.
I sold our RV just to survive a few months.
Finally, I was given a small widow benefit’s check each month.
Having been out of the work force for so long, and having some health issues of my own for lack of care while being his caregiver - I was not able to find a job.
Finally was able to work almost a year as a caregiver in a resident home. But that ended - not so good.
Little by little I have put my life together.
Not what I dreamed of having.
Not what I want even now.
But a life - of sorts.
At least now I have my own roof over my head. Not having to stay with family or friends.
And I have a truck to drive, even if it does have some “issues” that leave me less than confident in driving it any distance, or very often.
I have groceries in the house to eat.
My bills are being paid.
I am finding things to do that keep my heart, mind, and hands, occupied.
I still struggle - financially, physically, emotionally.
But I think I am at the point of accepting that it’s just my life now.
I spend time on the phone, and online, with our kids and grandkids, with friends, with a few family members.
I read some - not as much as I used to.
- Still can’t seem to stay focused to read voraciously these days.
I watch the older movies and sitcoms.
- A lot of what I watch, I don’t really watch.
- Just to have voices in the background of my days and life.
Working on my website.
- Although not as much as I should be doing.
Spending some time with kids and grandkids.
- not as much as I would like, but schedules of work and cost of fuel, as well as lack of dependable vehicle, puts a damper on the time together.
I have yet to find a job that will work within my physical limitations, or what I can make per month due to the widow benefits. And I can’t afford to lose them. Applications filled out. Interviews gone to. Phone calls made. And so far . . . emptiness.
Spending a lot of hours alone, with my thoughts and memories.
It’s a process - this grief and loneliness that makes a widow’s life.
I was told early on that if I didn't deal with the grief and loneliness, that it would find a way and a time to deal with me.
Truer words could not be spoken.
As Reba sang, “The world doesn’t stop for my broken heart.”
Life goes on - even when we don’t want it to.