Dreaming In Full Color

This isn’t one of my creative writing blogs. This is a legitimate dream of my late husband, with no sex happenings.

I think it had a bit to do with a guy I saw, recently, across the street from Freddy’s on Shawnee Mission Parkway. He looked just like Mitch. My heart skipped a beat, even.

It may have something to do with my cousin reading cards for me. It was the night of Imbolc (which I really know nothing about, but it’s a “witchy holiday” is how I refer to it, since I don’t know. Lol)

My cousin read cards for 3 men who have entered my life recently, without knowing which she was reading about each time. Anyway. I’m a “weirdo”, and I have this fantastic pull when it comes to certain people, and there’s a telltale sign in my bones when someone is meant to be in my life long-term. When you just come out and say “you’re not going anywhere until we figure this out!” It gives off weirdo vibes to the max.

So, with each man she read the cards. With each one, The cards matched my initial gut reaction I experienced upon meeting or reconnection.

Now, onto my dream.

I fell asleep after my cousin left here. Mitch was there. He was across the street at a gas station looking like he’d never been gone, but also quite confused. No car, no wallet, nothing.

I went to him. He gasped and hugged me hard. He told me he missed me.

The dream flashed to a doctor’s office. I told him he had a heart condition and needed to keep it monitored so he didn’t disappear again.

The dream flashed to me being in a car, seeing Mitch through a window of our apartment, and he grabbed his chest. He grimaced. I stopped the car, ran inside and began cpr while screaming for someone to come help.

The dream shifted again. I saved his life this time. I was there and I saved him. I was scared he was going to leave me because of all the things I’ve done since he died.

I laid with my head in his lap crying as he stroked my hair. I told him I love him and I’d never stop loving him, but that I believed our journey together on earth was over. He told me “Your journey is just beginning. Keep following the path you’re on. What is meant to be, will be.”

I woke up with such a sense of closure, and such a sense of love and acceptance and a new sense of excitement to explore this part of my life.

He spoke words that I speak regularly, but it was as if someone was finally speaking them to me. Someone was finally reminding me that everything happens for a reason.

Every single meeting is meant to take place in each and every person’s life. Nothing is coincidence. Everything is purposeful. Don’t get angry when things don’t go your way. LEARN, then put your knew knowledge into action to create the life you’re meant to live.

That dream, my husband telling me to continue my path. Just wow. I, honestly, don’t even know what path I’m on. Am I on a path to be with my next “person”? Am I on a journey of further self-discovery, a deeper knowledge of myself, spiritually?

I guess, when it comes to this path I’m on, I’ll treat it like every other one,

I’ll keep putting

One Foot In Front Of The Other.

Happy Monday.

Divine.

I Got Issues. You Got’em Too.

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Many times, lately,  I find myself throwing myself into situations I should most definitely avoid. These situations are mainly men.

Men who aren’t right for me.

Men who I’m not right for.

When does it end?

When does “real” happen again?

When do I stop? Have I gotten myself into situations so often that it’s becoming natural for me?

I don’t NEED drama in my life. I don’t. Consciously, I don’t want it either, but, I seem to draw that shit in, each one filled more so than the last.

Meet a guy at a party. Start seeing him as a friend with benefits, but when I wanted more, it wasn’t an interest.

Have an AMAZING hookup, see the guy 2 more times, then nothing. Wrong guy for me. (You’ll read about him in my book)

Fall in love with this guy, because he’s perfection in a man, one of my best guy friends.  Wrong man for me. God Damnit!

Date a guy from school, who turned out to be absolutely horrible for me.

An ex came back into my life, and I am not sure this will work. Simply stated: I don’t trust him. I’m not sure if it’s his fault or if it’s my fault or if it’s a combination of both our faults, and our histories. Whatever the case, I don’t trust him, so I am paranoid, and my overthinking mind goes ballistic of it’s own accord. Thoughts and images of him with another woman raging through my mind. WHY? But, usually, my intuition is right, when it comes to this, so I am fucking terrified. The first night out with the ex, we damn near went to town in the bathroom at a bar. Thank god the glass fell off the sink and broke.  That isn’t me. Is it? Seems to be me, when I’m with him, oddly enough. Even when we were kids, making out, hot and heavy at the drive in theatre, with his dad in the front seat of the car. Always hot and heavy. Can’t keep our hands to ourselves. Never could. Like there’s no “simmer”. Gotta find that knob, or this won’t work either. 

I don’t want to change anyone. I know that’s something a lot of women do. I don’t. I stand strong in the statement “Only you can fix you.”

One of the most commonly occurring statements to me, seems to be, “I’d love to have sex with you, but you are just my friend.

Why am I good enough for sex, good enough as a friend, but not good enough to be a partner? Why is the first thing every man wants, when it comes to me,  sex? Seriously.

So, instead of keeping my standards high, I lower and lower until the bar is just stepped over, like nothing matters.

When will this end?

I know my worth. I quit talking about my worth out loud, because I don’t want to sound like a conceited, stuck-up bitch. You know? I’m not trying to scare potential male suitors away. ha. Or maybe that’s what I SHOULD do. Maybe Survival of the Fittest is how I should treat it.

I’m a LOT. I am sure I’ve said it before, somewhere in all of these writings. I was way up then wayyyyyy down, yesterday.

I left the bar, to go get pepto for Meg, and come home. I sat in the parking lot of CVS, snot crying because my head is so twisted, and knotted over so many thoughts, and I can’t get it straight. I can’t untie the knots, and smooth the strings. Am I in love with my friend? I mean, the whole world shifted and I haven’t been able to NOT think about him all of the time. Anytime I kissed a guy, I felt like I was cheating. I felt like I was cheating on a chance to be with him. And maybe, MAYBE I created a version of him that isn’t who he is, but who I see and want him to be. Maybe I fell in love with an illusion. I don’t know.

I just want the tangles in my brain to stop.

I want it to unwind, but every time I pull a string, it makes the knots more and tighter.

I want easy, for fuck’s sake!

I mean, I am not naive enough to believe that having a relationship will be simple, but I want the trust to come naturally. Why is it SO hard for me, now? I had zero issues trusting Mitch. But he sat down with me, before our second date, and told me, “I don’t trust you.” Zero intro to the statement, and just a touch of explanation after. Then, I proved myself to him.

Maybe… Maybe I’ll just take a dating hiatus again.

When I don’t fight for attention.

When I feel wanted for more than my body.

When I feel like a partner.

When I get a say in when we see each-other, rather than the guy always calling the shots.

When he makes me feel beautiful at my worst.

When I am so obviously the only one he thinks about and wants to be with.

When I never have to question if he’s lying.

When he proves he’s worthy of my company.

Then… THEN I’ll step into something.

 

Until then… Respect my mess, because it is a part of this package.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is There a God? If So, He Has A Terrible Sense of Humor.

So, there are a lot of stories about this and that on the internet. Everyone loses someone, so what makes my loss any more interesting or something that anyone wants to read.

“It’s so painful to read. I just can’t do it.”

“It’s too personal. Not in my wheelhouse.”

That’s cool. My feelings aren’t hurt. I TOTALLY understand.

So, my idea of God and his sense of humor.

I’ve gone my entire life, only really knowing one good man, before I met Mitch. (My brother was still young and going through some things. He wasn’t “great man” status just yet. Great brother? absolutely!)

And get this. The greatest man I knew was ALSO named Mitch. He is my uncle. When My uncle Mitch met my (at the time) boyfriend, Mitch, my uncle was the one who gave him the father speech. “My niece is worthy of someone great. Do not hurt her. You will regret it.” type of speech. When my Mitch told me that, I cried. I had never thought myself worthy of anything more than temporary commitment.

Wow, did my Mitch prove me wrong! Then, if God is real, he took him from me. Really fucking funny, God. I’m not laughing, and neither are any of the people who met him.

I’ve talked about the bar Mitch set when it came to how a man should treat a woman.

Slowly, over time, I have lowered that bar.

It had gotten pretty fucking low, actually. I seriously have dated some pretty fucked up dudes, and at the time, I didn’t think anything of it.

Then, I received an insanely rude, quite disgusting text from an ex, and I just lost it. I was SO pissed off, that I texted a couple of my girlfriends and my recently acquired guy friend.

My guy friend called me and proceeded to tell me that I am worth so much more than those kinds of texts. He was so nice, and I just bawled. I was, literally, snotting everywhere. I wasn’t hurt by the text. The text pissed. me. off. It made me wonder what the hell I was doing.

I was talking about my birthday with my guy friend and he said he wanted to take me out for my birthday. I had a date the night of my bday, so I threw out some other days that I could be available. I didn’t say the day before my birthday, because that was “tomorrow”, in my mind and not enough notice.

He suggested we go out that morning. Not on a date. Just a friend taking a friend out for her birthday.

For it not being a date, he treated me like a queen. He opened every door. He paid. During the movie, he left to use the restroom and grab something caffeinated and asked if I wanted anything from the concession stands.

I know. It does not sound like much at all, when its typed out. But to me, it was everything.

Absolutely Everything.

I didn’t even REALIZE how low I put my bar of standards and expectations.

It was unacceptably low.

Thank goodness I became friends with a man who has been the only one to meet my initial expectations, when it comes to dating. Who knows how long I would have left that bar so low? Who knows how much lower it would have gone?

What the FUCK was I teaching my DAUGHTER?

Thanks, friend, for grabbing my lowered bar, and placing it back on the top, where it should have always stayed. Thank you. I appreciate you, even though you won’t read this. And if you do, I’ll be surprised.

God’s sense of humor, here? I’ve mentioned how amazing my friend is. I knew he was pretty amazing before experiencing him in person, for the first time since our teen years.  I was never physically attracted to him. I even told my work-wife (Love you Lisa!) that I wish I was physically attracted to him. I asked, silently as well, “Why can’t I be attracted to HIM?”  Some may call it a prayer. I called out to everyone and no one, and when I saw him, that morning, all I could see was how handsome and kind and amazing he was.

Oh, for FUCK’S SAKE!

Really?

REALLY, GOD?

You choose NOW to “answer my prayers?”

WHY?

You dangle perfection in front of my face, knowing damn well that it’s a fucking triangle of doom??

Ugh!

It’s okay. It is. I am a mature adult, and I just thought, “Well damn. Maybe he does exist? Maybe he just thinks he’s fucking hilarious? Maybe, my life is a sitcom, and he’s laughing as he pulls these strings and watches me stumble about.”

It’s okay.

I’m gonna laugh right back and keep him as my damn friend, and that’s that!

Maybe The whole purpose of this friend coming into my life, when he did was to help me with my expectations. Hell, I had been helping him ask a girl out that he has been crushing on for a while. (hence the triangle comment above)

And today, TODAY, God people came to my door with booklets. I don’t do well with any people coming door to door, for any reason. It bothers me.

Then, as I sat at the dining room table, after cleaning up a bit, I realized I had just done something the Bible says will put me in hell!!

FUCK! FUCK! DOUBLE FUCK!

I turned a person away, that was trying to share the word of god with me.

If I go to hell for that, I will be in hell with a lot of people I know. My husband included. You know, since he didn’t believe in the Bible or organized religion.

God, if you’re out there, I don’t think this is funny. I don’t know if you’re real, and that’s got to be because this would be the first prayer that was answered, that I didn’t realize was a prayer in the first place.

*forehead slap*

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My Face, not laughing at God’s sense of humor.

I Used to be a Christian

“The other day, when I was reading something you posted, it hit me. YOU are the writer!”

 

I know, the title is going to get everyone’s panties in a wad.

Chill out.

Read it.

You’ll get it.

I am 36 years old.

I have one HELL of a story to tell.

I’m not sure I’ll make money off of it, but it I do, I’ll have to A: change the names of the people so I don’t have to get their consent to tarnish their names, or B: Get consent from people I love dearly, to drag their names through the mud, because it’s a part of my story.

I remember when I was little. I remember going to church and loving Sunday school. I remember coloring and playing with other kids, praying at night for all of my loved ones and even all the strangers I never met, and never would meet to be safe. I was naive. I believed that if I prayed for EVERYONE, everyone would be safe. Then, one day, I was in shorts and a t-shirt, accepting Jesus into my heart as my lord and savior, as I was dunked into a pool of water in front of a congregation.

I was 7.

I remember, because I remember the look on my dad’s face when I told him I wanted to be baptized. It was a look I craved. A look of acceptance, of love, pride and happiness. I believed that Jesus was good and God loved all of mankind.

The older I got, the more confused I became. It wasn’t because of outside influences. It was because of everything I had read in the Bible.

I’m not going to bash the Bible, or God, or Jesus, or Christians.

I guess, I am writing this to say a few things. I am one of those “think outside the box” types of person. I know. You probably never would have guessed it, am I right? ha!

I have read the Bible. I have read it cover to cover a few times.

It. Makes. NO. Sense. It’s about as contradictory as anything could be.

But that’s okay. MOST of it is good guidelines for how to be a good person.

Jesus was this totally rad dude, who helped poor people, sex addicts, drug addicts, thieves and more! He totally loved them and taught them how to be good people. He proved to them that the choices they were making weren’t the only choices set out for them. He showed them that, although a rough road, a possible road. Right?

Totally cool guy. Loving, accepting, nurturing.

One of those guys you aspire to be like. Right?

Well, you don’t have to BELIEVE the Bible, to believe in the main character. Right?

Either way, my “faith” is different than it was when I was a child.

I have lived. I have observed. I have survived, and have stayed pretty damn level headed in the process.

At the point where one would finally break, I, instead,  keep striving for better. Not to GET something better, but to BE something better.

When I was a child, I believed that I would forever be protected. Nothing bad could happen to cause heartache or sadness, or the things that I have experienced through my 36 years of life.

Boy, was I wrong.

I say something that I know may piss off a lot of people, but I believe it one hundred percent.

Everything happens for a reason.

I’m sure many people who are grieving right now want to reach through their screens and slap the ever-loving shit out of me, right now.

I believe it. You do not have to. But, I do. I always will.

I REALLY met Mitch at a point in my life where I was really ready to call it quits with dating. I honestly never wanted to see another man in a dating manner again. (That was my dramatic teenage mind)

He walked into McDonald’s, smiled his brilliant smile at me, and told me I was coming to his birthday party.

You read that right. He didn’t ask if I’d go. He told me I was going.

“Hey, What are you doing this weekend? Oh? going to my birthday party. Okay, We’ll pick you up at 6!”

I was stunned. I was shocked. I was ALREADY in love with that boy, and he didn’t even know. We were both 17 years old.

He walked into that McDonald’s on the most perfect night, with the best “invite” to a birthday party I had ever received.

I think if God is real, he laughed when I swore to all things holy that I would NEVER name my child Megan, when I was 15 years old…

Que the laughter…

My favorite human, aka my daughter, is Megan. I can’t even imagine her with a different name.

Just as I remember the first time he “asked” me out, I remember our last night together. I remember what he had for dinner. I remember what movie we watched. I remember the words he spoke, as if they were gospel.

I remember his hand as he held mine during that movie.

I remember the next day, when I walked… ran to the doors of the FedEx Hub only to be dragged into an office and told that he was gone. I remember thinking “There’s no way there is a god. There’s no way a god would take such a man from this earth. No way!”

I always joked with Mitch about how I didn’t remember life before him. I think I phrased it wrong. I remembered life before him, but it felt like another lifetime. Like everything was happening as it should .

When he died, I had that same feeling. Everything is falling into place. Everything is exactly as it should be.

I hate it. Megan hates it. Our families hate it.

But that feeling. Gawwwwwd that feeling.

I’ve thought so many times that if anyone knew how I felt, how I felt as thought this is meant to be, I’d be looked at as heartless.

Now, though, I know I am not. I know my family and my friends, my coworkers and my past coworkers know that I am not heartless.

Mitch, I believe, completed his mission here. Whatever his mission was, he completed it, and he did it FAST.

I can tell you that whoever was supposed to learn from him, learned well.

Whatever it was he taught, he taught it without knowing he did.

I feel like I was a part of his mission, but definitely not the whole of it.

He taught me to be kind, even when I didn’t want to be. He taught me to see everyone’s point of view, and not take sides. He taught me that I have the ability to be amazing, I just needed to put forth the effort. (still trying, babe!) He taught me, most of all, that good men did still exist. He taught me that there were really still good fathers. He taught me that I am so much stronger than I ever imagined I could be.

I could write a book about how much like Jesus Mitch was. He never “laid hands on” and “healed” people like the Bible says Jesus did, but he sure did heal people with his words, his kindness, his acceptance, and his love. He talked to everyone, and he helped everyone.

So, again, I say: I used to be a Christian.

Now, I no longer align myself with any one religion, but, I believe that something is out there. Something is in charge and we are mere pawns in a game.

Am I winning?

Am I losing?

I guess I will only know when I pass on to the next realm.

Until then, I will continue my path of love and acceptance. I will not intentionally harm anyone. I will cherish my family and friends. I will teach kindness, empathy, and happiness through example.

 

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What Is Life, Without A Little Death?

Here death strikes again.

So many people, such a short time.

It has happened since long before any of us, and will continue with us and way after us.

Death

It’s inevitable.

We all live our lives. We go and go. Some of us are moving so quickly through life, that we are missing out on the things that really are the more important things.

I was guilty of this. I’m not ashamed to admit it. I have since figured out a better balance, though.

I love my family.

I love my friends.

I love racing, and birthdays, and listening to my people talk about their lives, and the things that they are passionate about.

I’m not very good at asking the questions, or initiating conversation, but that’s because I will listen to you tell me about your passions, your grief, your day at work.

When Mitch died, in January of 2017, I was confused. I wasn’t angry, I didn’t really wonder why, so much as “What the Fuck?” It wasn’t an angry wtf, so much as a confused, how could this have happened type question. Once we knew the science and biology behind, I stopped asking. I knew.

That question was answered.

You hear people say, all of the time, “god only gives you what he knows you can handle.” If you believe in God, this has to be true.

You may not know you have it in you, until LIFE (or death really), slaps you in the face.

Wednesday, after I ran 10 miles and was in my car, headed to get some food, I received a phone call. My father in law lost his girlfriend. (They might as well had been married. They had that connection, and that unconditional love. They were only missing the legal documentation).

Let me throw out a little back story on this man, without going too deep into details, or anything.

This man was married to my husband’s biological mother. He adopted my husband, and had 2 more children with his wife, Megan.

When Megan was in her early-mid twenties (I don’t want to screw up on the details), she was murdered in a bar, by a crazy man.

This man, Mike, became a widower father to 3 children, one of which was a tiny baby girl.

He did not handle that well. I mean, who could blame him, right? His wife was murdered. What was he supposed to do?

Fast forward through some addictions and runaways, some verbal fights, and a bit of time in jail, a couple of marriages, divorces and a couple more kids, grandbabies and sobriety.

Here we are, he’s the father of 5 now. He’s gotten his head together, he’s trying very hard to be a good man.

His eldest son dies. The son he adopted, when the son was just a boy, and had his mother ripped from him. The father who may have had his problems surviving this life, lost his son.

He had an amazing woman by his side, to help keep him together. She was there to keep him steady, and remind him that he would be okay. He would make it through this.

Fast forward a little over 2 years, and his girlfriend is now with his first wife, and eldest son.

If god is real, and only gives people what they can handle, he sees something heroic in Mike.

I’m so devastated, for him, and can’t even begin to imagine how his mind is processing.

I’ve been told I’ve handled all of my adversity with grace, and I don’t know. It’s what everyone on the outside sees, when my insides are a screaming and tangled and threatening escape.

But death. Death is one thing we are all going to face.

Death is inevitable, and I don’t think we should fear it. I’m not afraid. I don’t want to die, and I’d never do anything to speed up the process, or invite it sooner. I want to live into my old age, maybe meet a second soulmate, and grow old together with them. I want to have grandbabies and a son-in-law (or daughter-in-law. I’m not picky)

I want to watch my daughter grow into a woman, and watch her find her soulmate, fall madly in love, marry, and grow into her adulthood.

I really love living. I think that Mike is realizing that he loves living as well. Even through the grief that seems to keep being added to his plate, he becomes just a little bit stronger, each round.

I wanted to share his story, because many people judge. Many people do not KNOW. People will never truly understand. But, just the briefest summary of the shot hand this man was felt, and he’s still here. He’s still standing. He is STILL putting one foot in front of the other.

The world we are on is still spinning.

The bills still need to be paid.

Our work here isn’t done, yet.

Death: The only thing guaranteed of life.

Live while you can!

Find happiness!

Be who you are!

Never stop saying their name!

Mary. Megan. Mitch. Sandra. Annie. Gramma and Grandpa McAnany.

Only their bodies are gone. We are forever able to remember them through our pictures, and our memories. We have videos, and voices recorded, now.

On the days we miss them the most, I think their spirits are the closest. Our human form cannot process their presence without their human form, so we interpret their spiritual presence as sadness, and yearning, and missing them.

We FEEL them, but we cannot touch or see them.

May all of our loved ones be partying like rock-stars.

Annie.

Has.

Arrived!

We will miss her, of course. But she is definitely in good hands now.

I See So Much Mitch, in My Daughter’s Face.

The other day, my daughter says “Mom, you should check your photo album, because there are some pretty sweet pics I took for you.”

I knew it was going to be a ton of selfies. It’s what she does. I finished my workout, and checked my phone, and there were 30-ish photos, of her, most in black and white.

I’ve always known Mitch’s traits were stronger in her, than mine. But, seeing these particular photos, really REALLY proves it.

I may or may not have cried, looking at these photos. My little (who is clearly taller than me) is absolutely beautiful, inside and out, with a LOT of her father’s sense of humor.

Looking at her does NOT make me sad, like I’ve seen it does to other people in our situation. Looking at her, and seeing him live through her brings tears of joy to my eyes. Absolute, joy, that he will live on, through her.

There are things that make me miss Mitch more than other things. Like all this snow we’ve had recently. He would have been BEGGING me to go sledding.

I would have said no, and suggested he take a friend, and kids.

I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with snow. I hate when it touches my skin, but I think it’s absolutely beautiful! I’m about to sound like one of THOSE kind of women, but seeing all the glistening snow reminds me of all the happiest Christmas, and romance movies. I love standing outside and spinning in circles, taking in the beauty of the snow covered tree branches and rooftops. I feel a bit of hope, when I look at it. The smell of snow, is the smell of happiness, and purity, innocence, and clarity. If all of those could be smell, it’d be the smell of fresh snow.

I do love sunshine and beaches more, because, well, I enjoy outdoor activities that don’t involve snow touching my skin. Sand is a welcome touch though. Sunshine, and ocean water, bbqs at the park, and trail running on mountain bike trails. Most of my races are in the warmer climates, and traveling is easier.

But, none of those summer things give the feeling if hope. Maybe that’s why there’s been all this snow. Maybe it gives a lot of people hope, and whoever is in charge of snowfall, (god, goddess, Mother Nature, whatever you believe) decided “It’s time!” And has been dumping on us, consistently for 2 months now.

Every time the snow melts completely, it snows again. This is our spring snow. It doesn’t look too bad, today.

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I feel as though my posts are fewer and fewer theses days, but I realize, maybe it’s because I talk about Mitch every single day. I make social media updates, see all the pictures, and have accepted my fate, as the woman widowed at 34. The widowed mother of a teenage daughter, who couldn’t be any easier to have a child, than she is exactly how she is.

I think, daily, about how proud I am of myself, for fighting to get paid what I was worth, in October of 2016, because if I didn’t, I’d be making $10/hr less than what I make now, and most likely be living the roommate life, or living in a tiny, uncomfortable apartment, somewhere that I don’t want to live. Megan even mentions it, once in a while.

Well, it is time for me to get my day started, so until next time, friends and family.

Much love to you all. And may anyone suffering from such a loss, find hope of happiness, and laughter, in things around you. Remember, there’s always a silver lining, and if we focus on the beauty, rather than the ugly, we can keep on putting

One foot in front of the other.

And always remember, you aren’t moving on, or forgetting anything. You are only moving forward, and making progressive movement.

New Year’s Event

One year.

Not since the death of my amazing husband, no. One year ago was the last holiday I got to spend with him.

Facebook assaults or blesses me with “on this day”, every single day. As I see pictures from last year, I see how pale Mitch was. I believe, that he was already in a downward fall. Not last year. I didn’t see it a year ago. If I did, or if he did, we wouldn’t be in this situation. Or we would? I’ll never know, and with this, “what ifs” can’t tear you down, so I try to avoid the “if only” and “what if” thoughts.

In the photo, before the countdown, he is smiling. His beautiful face, pale. (He tried avoiding the camera all night, because he didn’t want the splint in any pictures. He hated that thing!)

These were the two photos from our last holiday together, that screamed at me, today.

New Year’s was a fun time, we spent with family and friends, every year. We loved bringing in the New year, surrounded by those we loved.

Mitch was always the life of the party. He made everyone around him feel good, and filled the room with laughter. It never failed.

I wish he was spending this new year’s holiday with us, too. I wish I could hear his big laugh, and wrap my arms around his big shoulders, and tell him I love him, over and over and over.

This year, he will be spending his New Year’s Eve with someone he hasn’t spent it with in many many years.

His mom. But, with all the family that has passed, he has a party going on, wherever they all are, and we all know it!!

Megan, Sandy, Paul, Scotty, and many many more.

Party On, Mitch. We miss the fuck out of you!

How To To Treat A Widow On Christmas…

That’s easy. Treat her like family. Treat her like a friend.

Maybe get her a gift. Nothing extravagant, of course, but something that says “I’m thinking about you.” Keep in mind, in most cases of married couples, they are typically the ones who buy for each-other. It’s strange to think, right? (Not me, really. I don’t care about gifts. I gave Meg $65 to buy me stuff, because I was more curious about WHAT she would pick out for me. 😂)

My best friends have gotten me gifts, and I love them dearly (and I also got gifts for them, just like every year).

A new widow, who is used to being with their husband, or wife, during the holidays is probably feeling more lonely that ever. Overwhelmed is a great word to use, for how I’ve felt. I have to remember EVERYTHING! I am not used to that. Mitch would always remind me “we forgot… insert family member here!”

He was my other half. He picked up where I slacked and slacked where I picked up. We were partners.

Remember, if it seems like your widowed friend remembered everyone but you, it wasn’t on purpose, or out of dislike. It’s because their partner isn’t there reminding them. This time of year is hectic, even for 2 people working together!

Hell, Mitch and I forgot people every single year. 2 were his freaking step siblings! EVERY SINGLE YEAR! He made a trip to the ATM to get them $20 each.

And know, when you are celebrating the holidays with your loved ones, your widow-friend is holding their shit together, with all of their strength. This is the time of year to be with the ones you love most, and they can’t have that. You don’t need to “feel sorry” for them, or look at them with pity in your eyes. That’s not desired. Just be yourself. That’s all I want from my friends and family.

Love me, like you always have. Hug me, like you always have.

Be present. And don’t be afraid to mention their name!

Mitch fucking LOVED Christmas! This was his FAVORITE holiday! He didn’t care about presents, but damnit, I tried every year to top the previous year’s gifts. Last year took the cake! I bought him the LAST XBOX1 in Kansas City. The last one! He bought me an inversion table. We spoiled the shut out of each-other.

I will miss spoiling the shit out of my man. I will work on topping each year of Megan’s Christmas gifts though. ❤️ I will carry on the tradition of making Grandma Kathleen cry with cards, and getting a goof ass card for his Uncle Paul.

Just remember, the holidays are so very bittersweet for anyone struggling with loss.

It’s hard, but, we have to put #OneFootInFrontOfTheOther

Thank you to all of my family, and all of my amazing friends, for being here, For sticking by me, even when it might have been the last thing you wanted to do. I appreciate you all! ❤️

I. Feel. GLORIOUS!

So, before you get mad and hate me for feeling glorious (I don’t really see that happening), let me explain.

Tonight, I went outside to run, for the first time in a while. I had it in my mind to do a 10 minute 30 second mile (average). I’ve only been running on treadmill, recently, and am averaging 9:30 minute miles. (Because it was inaccurate). I figured it was about a minute off per mile, but went with it, thinking, “okay. If my treadmill mile is 9:30 consistently, my outdoor mile will be about 10:30 consistently, and an unpaved trail will be closer to 11-12 minutes. Anyway.

I was listening to Macklemore.

So the lyrics to Macklemore’s songs strike me, quite often as

A: my thoughts.

B: Something Mitch would have said, or HAS said.

Here is one example:

🎶 I feel glorious, glorious

Got a chance to start again

I was born for this, born for this

It’s who I am, how could I forget?

I made it through the darkest part of the night

And now I see the sunrise

Now I feel glorious, glorious

I feel glorious, glorious 🎶

I feel like I was born to be strong. Period. In every way, imaginable. I am finally working on my physical strength, and I. Feel. GLORIOUS! My “chance to start again” is with my health. Mitch passing so young, from a natural cause, really woke me up, and made me get the fuck off of the couch. I am currently making it through the darkest night (the loss of Mitch) and there is sunrise! I find a ray and hold onto it.

I am here, hoping with all hope that I am helping one person see that the end of a life doesn’t mean the end of the world. It only means that we must grow stronger, and feel with everything we have. We must keep moving forward, because forward movement is progressive movement, and progressive movement is the only good movement.

Memories are great, and fantastic things. Pictures, videos, and scents.

Sometimes, I want to get lost in my memories of Mitch. I want to remember how warm and safe I felt, when he wrapped his arms around me. I want to feel his warmth, when I am cold, and tell him to get his stinky feet off of me.

Remember him, I will. Get lost, I will not. It’s very important for me to keep a level head, and a warm heart. It’s important to me, to be a person children can look up to, and see, that with the worst of changes, everything can and WILL work out. I want other widows or widowers to see that it is OK to find happiness, in whatever way they need, as long as they aren’t hurting people in their pursuit of happiness.

You want to speak to a crowd of people about your loss? MAKE IT HAPPEN!

You wish to write a book? MAKE IT HAPPEN!

You want to sign up for those races?! DO IT!

Life is too short for WHAT IFS!

Be the strong you see in your heroes. Be it mental, physical, or whatever other forms of strong there are. Find it within yourself, and nurture it!

You Got This!

Spending the Holidays “With” Your Deceased Spouse.

I’ve dreamed of Mitch, nearly every night for the last week.

In these dreams, we are discussing what to buy for Megan for Christmas, and “Has she ACTUALLY been good, this year?” (The answer is yes. She has been amazing, especially under the circumstances!)

I had one where we were ACTUALLY Christmas shopping. He was being his normal self, throwing things into the carts of unsuspecting strangers. He was also picking up ugly sweaters, and talking about how much he wanted one, this year. (Talked to a friend, and she suggested, without knowing this dream, to get a tiny ugly sweater for his urn! OMG! AMAZING IDEA!) He also got Michael (his brother) something that was ACTUALLY at Target, yesterday! So, naturally, I bought the damn thing for Michael Dale! So, brother-in-Law, your gift was ACTUALLY from my dream-Mitch. I hope you like it!

Last night’s dream was weird! It reminded me of a cross between Home Alone, and the movie that Kevin watches in home alone, along with something that has happened to me a few times, and Meg once. (Keep the change you filthy animal! Bang bang pew pew pow!)

Real: When I was in Nebraska, we were driving down the street, and the street lights flickered as we went under them, and then went dark.

Real: When Meg and I were driving down 95th street, the street lights went out as we drove under them! It was crazy!

In my dream, I was at a bar, it was decorated for Christmas, and we were drinking, and dancing, and having a good time. Meg was at home, with friends, and sent me a text. “Mom! Check the string of lights around the bottle of alcohol in the corner of the bar!”

I have no idea how she knew to look at it, but, I followed her direction, and looked at it. All the lights were out, except the red ones, Mitch’s favorite color. The red ones were flashing. (Maybe a mix of Stranger Things, too!) a stranger came up, and said “That’s Morse code!” And wrote it down. The lights were telling me to GO HOME NOW!

So, I paid my tab, and got an Uber. As the Uber drove towards my home, the street lights flickered and went out, as we went under each light.

I get home, and run inside, and up the stairs, to find Meg in her bay window (yes I have a house in this dream and it is huge and gorgeous!) pointing outside.

There is her father. Riding a bicycle, in circles around our culdesac (Mitch always wanted to live on a culdesac) He was carrying something. He looked kind of scary, then I realized it was because he looked exactly like his bitmoji cartoon. He pulled out a big gun, and started shooting up the neighbor’s home. He was laughing! Meg and I were horrified!

Then, he was gone! We ran outside to go see if the neighbors were okay. And when we stepped out, we looked up, and the neighbor’s house was decorated for Christmas, so beautifully, with no signs of gunfire. It wasn’t decorated prior to him “shooting” it up.

The gun was a special, Christmas gun. And I know, if Mitch were alive, and that thing were real, he would own it.

So, as far as the title of this blog goes, I feel like I am getting more time with Mitch, than I have been getting. We’ve been Christmas shopping, and going over Christmas lists, and he even reminded me to buy something that I had forgotten to get, for Megan! (I am aware these are dreams, so don’t go calling the crazy house!)

Life has been so busy. And it’s just going to keep moving. I have been blessed with the ability to remember my dreams, so I will cherish each and every dream I get to have of him.

Happiest of Holidays to you all.