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Laughing To The Grave Part III

My mind, has more, than five or six subjects racing around the groves of my brain, at high-speed. I can catch flickers and share those easier, with you.

My friend Chris and I have been friends for almost thirty-years. She can still make me laugh, to the point of tears.

We were on the subject, of her moms second marriage. Which took place when she and I were growing up. She was telling me, when they moved into their first home. Her step-dad, immediately started to finish her a room in the basement. She said, he could not get her down there fast enough. She lived down there all through high-school. When her brother, the son of her mom, and step-dad, grew up. He told his mom, he would like, her old room, in the basement. When their mom mentioned this to his dad, He said: “absolutely not, that basement is a death-trap!”

When my husband gets his feathers ruffled. He has a tendency to puff up the upper part of his chest. A few weekends ago. He was mowing the lawn. He hit a valve on the air-conditioner, it started leaking anti-freeze! When he came in, and told me. I made a snide remark to him, to slow-down. His fist was still down at his sides, as he bawled them up and puffed out his chest. (think of Pop-Eye and how he used to stand.) To fuel-the-fire, I puffed up  my chest, and put a bit of a twerk on the move to exaggerate and lighten up the situation. He then, in turn, battles my move. He throws his shoulders back so hard, his pearl-snaps came un-done and he pulls off an Incredible-Hulk move!

A fb friend of mine, who I barely know. She was having a few problems, which is not funny, I know. The reason you could tell something was wrong is because she was posting a post every five minutes. She was blasting people, and things they had done years ago. She received a message from her inbox, a lady who told her “get back on your meds” she gave us the name, of the woman, who sent her the message, on a post. The lady’s  last name was Dick. She said in her post, “it isn’t a wonder her last name is what it is.”

We had company yesterday afternoon. She showed up, and my son had just got, into the shower. We were standing in the kitchen door-way which also faces the bathroom. I seen him grabbing a towel, as he put the towel around him. He yells: “Keep distracting her mom!”

I got a selfie stick from a co-worker, last week. I went to my parents house and we gave it a whirl!

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memories

Nineteen Years Ago The Second Half of Eighteen Years Ago

The pain I experienced was nothing I prepared for back then. I was single through high-school and after, someone came a long and changed my life. My lonely nights, to late night calls, beside my parents, hugs. He hugged me as if he were holding onto his own life, he asked me how I was. And questioned my past. We talked about his past, and at the time I just was not catching on

My friend, Cher, came and picked me up one day. She said she was “taking me up to the big city to find him”. We went to his sister apartment. She got into our car and showed us where you were staying. The place didn’t have all the windows, the skirting was unraveling like yarn, the yard had no grass, and there was blue-tarp over the roof. I can’t believe at the time, my eyes were sewn shut but they were. You took ten-minutes to come out and greet me. You looked whiter than normal, thinner than remembered, The black circles you had around your eyes are still embedded in my mind. You grabbed both of my hands and whispered to me “what are you doing here” I had to see you, and thought I deserved to know where you were… “Go back home.” I promise, I will call you tomorrow at twelve” I never got the call. But our phone did ring, my parents had them all locked up in their bedroom because I had been making long distance calls.

Eight months later I moved to the big city because I crashed my car. I moved in with my best friend. My friend Cher came up to visit me. She knew where you still stood with me. She said “let’s go over to his sisters” we did and you were there. I walked over and sat on the coach beside you. You were thinner than last time, you still had those black circles under your eyes, You would not look on either side, just straight ahead and you never said one word. We wrapped up talking to your sister, and on my way out, I turned around and asked if I could have a pen. I wrote down my phone number on the paper with a note. I walked over to you and tucked the piece of paper in your sweaty palm, you opened it right up, shook your head and smiled. I heard from you on and off after our visit. I chased after you, a few more times, and told myself, I was finished. However, a few months after I decided to throw in the towel. You showed up at my job, where I waitresed, you said nothing to me, as you waited for your pizza. I said nothing to you as well, not because I didn’t want too, but because I was mad. I got a phone call that night from you, you said you wanted a chance and that you would call me after you got off work.

The other night at the grocery store, seeing you, took me right back, to those moments in my life. The  feelings I had did not follow the now. I told my mom how upset I was that they were not there and wished it wouldn’t have happened. She said “you got what you have been looking for, closure and closure is what you needed’

My friend Chris over the last six years has told me “give it up woman” she don’t understand why I hold on. She says “he’s the one who got away” I will ask her, do you think he did care?  and she will say “no” he would be here if he did.” Another friend of mine, three said to me a couple of weeks ago it’s “your story, you’re a writer, why don’t you come up with your own ending?”

Dearlilyjune: Once wrote a memory of “Eddie” a guy she dated in her past. Even though, the story is different. These words stood out to me in neon flashing lights. I had an A-ha moment.”I stopped talking to him altogether. And it was the cruelest and kindest thing I could think of. And he, whether he felt it at the time or not, was lucky to be free of me”.

We didn’t say too much to one another besides the same old hi how are you, I may, may, I tell you been a little nervous, and picked up a Lipton tea package, turned it over acting like I was reading the package/ingredients because I was nervous. And said “Oh hell, it’s just Lipton”. You walked away to go stock another shelf. I could tell this wasn’t  a moment you wanted to be in. I trailed behind you hoping, before the end of the aisle you would give me some sort of an apology and it did not come.

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And this quote from -Leo Christopher landed in my lap a week ago today and clarity comes to my mind. I believe we get answer to our questions through other’s. The process might be slow but if we’re  truly after peace, peace takes foot-work but it’s all right here in whats been wrote from other’s and their feelings.

I took the day off today, our step-children are visiting us from Texas. We got stuff moved from the garage to the basement, three of us went out to eat and my step-daughter and I went for a walk in Forest park. We took pictures, talked, we broke through to each-other. We came home and my husband filled up the pool, and the kids done some late night swimming. I’m sitting here about to wrap this whole thing up but first before I go.

My dearest first love,

Thank you for walking away from me, thank you for knowing, you weren’t for me, thank you for giving me a life I deserve.

 

 

memories

Eighteen Years Ago

You called me, and asked me to give you another chance. You said, you would call me when you got off work. Nine, ten, eleven twelve, and one came and went. I turned out all the lights in my apartment. I walked down the quiet, dark, hallway. I laid across my four-post bed. The black night, was a spotlight, on the white, cordless phone. I dialed up the story line, and played it over and over, hoping for the beep, letting me know, I had another call. And I would click over to my happiness. I don’t know, how long, I held on to the phone that night. I do know, how long, I have hung on to you.

I ran into you, a week ago today, since you left me hanging that night. Clearly, seeing you took me back like it was last night and here is MY story.

I was fresh out of high-school, a late bloomer to the core. It was the second time I kissed a boy, and the first time my body moved in ways I wasn’t quite familiar with. You wanted to take it a bit further, but I wasn’t ready. We were up all night long.We repeated the same scene the next night. In the morning I went home. You came by my house to tell me you were going back to the town. Witch was thirty-miles away. No, it was not far. But for a girl who only had her license for a few weeks, and her first car. I had never left town on my own. And, you had no car.

I lived with my parents, and worked at Subway. You called, around ten every night. I can’t for the life of me remember what we talked about. However, it was brief. My best friend  took me up to see you one Friday. When we got there you came running out. You had  black, shiny, straight hair. Your bangs brushed your eyelashes, your white pasty skin was a beautiful backdrop for your sky blue eyes and you kept  them open when you wrapped your arms around me, pressing your forehead against mine and whispering how you missed me.

We crammed into my friends Taurus and drove around the big city for a while. I cannot remember where we went, but I was on your lap the whole way. We played R. Kelley the whole time, you sang certain lyrics in my ear. The contact-high I was getting inside that car, made me feel like our lives together were the only ones on earth. I felt nothing, saw nothing, wanted to do nothing, except you.We got back to where you were staying, and my friend told me we had to leave. We went into the laundry-room and said our goodbyes. I can still see your smile, the way you stared right at me with your eyes, the way you ran your hand up in down my cheek and told me how nice it was to see me, you couldn’t wait to see me again.

I got home that night, and we talked briefly on the phone. I worked the rest of the week and you called every-night. We disgust me coming up on my own for the week-end. I was scared shitless, it was gutsy move, and my parents knew nothing about my planned get-a-way. You gave me directions. They must have been easy, because I made the drive. Until I got to your town and missed my turn. You seen me miss my turn and hopped in the car with your grandma. I looked up in my rearview, and you were running after me, waving, and chasing me down, like I was about to go off a cliff. I stopped my car, in the middle of the road and you told me to “scoot over I will drive”. We barely came up for air the whole time I was there. However, the conversation, you did bring up, was your time limit at your cousin’s house. You both had been staying with your cousins dad. He had given you BOTH a time-limit to get a job. If you could not find a job. You had to find somewhere else to live. We did go over a few places you could put your application in. I named a few fast-food places I seen on the way up to your house, you told me you had filled them out for those places I mentioned. When I got ready to leave my car wouldn’t start. We had to call my dad. When I told him where I was. He said  “find a way to get your ass home”. We looked at each-other and both decided I would stay one more night. The next day you got the car running and I went home.

The next night at work I never got your call. I did not think nothing of it, until the next night you didn’t call. After that, my chest felt like it was cut open, placed on the outside of my body, with someone tightly squeezing. The next few weeks went by, was like watching a movie in slow-motion. The reason, I did not call you at the time, is because it was long-distance. I was able, on my next day off to go over to a family members house of yours. They lived in the same town. We tried to call and only got a machine. She ended up getting a hold of me after a few days. She let me know you were staying with your sister. When I was able to get to a pay-phone you wasn’t there either.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wpkS2DU_qMs

“Like sands through an hour-glass, these are the days of our lives”

To Be Continued

 

 

 

 

 

Family · friendship

Laughing To The Grave Part 2

Writing on my blog has not been easy lately. I’m not going to lie. I look around at some of your post, and think my God, where can I get a blog like them… It’s not the size, I envy. It’s your writing style, your format, your flow, pictures, fonts, and the time that looks like you put into your blog. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t sit at the table with my elbow on it, leaning against my hand, for hours. It just makes me more aware of what and how I write. My cohort told me the other night.

“When it comes down to it, what matters is that people understand what you’re trying to say”

A few things have been keeping my family down in the dumps, my husband and I mainly. I won’t go into it too much, because you heard it all before. I would rather make us both laugh, how bout it?

A few weeks ago, Emmet was under the weather, and just not acting normal. My supervisor asked me to take her into the Emergency Room. They were getting her checked in, asking her questions about who, what, when, where, and why.

“Where is it, that you live?”

Emmet: The Jerry Kline Home For The Blind

“What Did you say”

Emmet: She then, slowly, broke-down all the words, and repeated herself

“Ok”

Emmet: busted out singing the nursery rhyme “Three Blind mice”

The same night, my husband and I were getting ready to go to bed. He had stepped out of our room for just a few minutes. I had a pill to take in my hand and of course dropped it. I was in-between the bed and the wall, on all fours, running my hand across the floor, trying to find that tiny thing.My husband walked backed in the room while I was on the hunt. He yells my name like he lost me in a crowd at a carnival. He scared the crap out of me. I pop up and say “What the hell, is going on”

Him: I did not see you, I thought the rapture had taken place and the lord took you instead of me…

My son and I got out-of-town, a few weeks ago. We went to a graduation. It was down by my home-town. On our way back home, we stopped in to see an old friend. Gabe asked them if we could use their bathroom. I went with him, because I had to go as well. He tripped over a toy and put his hand through a hole, which you could tell had been there already. He looks up at me, motions me to come in closer, when I get face to face with him, he looks around and back again at me.

Mom: I think their house is ripping apart!

I know you’re aware we follow Jesus, since my son was born I have let him know he can talk to him anytime. It does not matter where you’re, what you’re doing, it’s as simple as talking to me. The other day he found a spider in our house. He was squatted down, following it around. He motioned me to come look at it and I did. I grabbed a shoe and smashed it!

Gabe: JESUS, LOOK OUT!

memories

10 Minutes Ago

I gave Emmet her medicine. She asked me to look up a song by Skeeter Davis. The name of the song is called “Oh The Loneliness Goes On And On And On”. I could not find it anywhere for her on YouTube? I asked if she knew the album it could be on, she shook her had no. She asked me to name the albums that did come up. I named the albums plus a few of the songs on each one, one of the songs were “Tell Laura I Love Her”. She asked me to play that and then play “The Answer Song”.

Me: What is “The Answer Song”

Emmet: “Tell Tommy I Love Him”

If you haven’t listened to them, you should, sometime.

I found the song and played it for her. My curiosity got the best of me as I sat and watched her sing the song word for word, her neck tilted, and her hands on her heart.

Me: Emmett, do you think of anyone in-particular when you listen to all these love songs by Skeeter Davis?

Her: Yes, well I used to anyway. We broke up a while back ago. You remember Archy Bunker?

Me: Yes Emmett, I do. What happened with you two?

Emmett: I can’t talk about it, it wouldn’t be right.

Me: Ooo, come on

Emmett: Well on our “last Date” (which by the way is another song by Skeeter Davis) Archy, he passed gas and the Odor was too much…

Home

I wrote

The last post  to build more story, Does anyone else use this method?

It was hard trying to keep some sort of normalcy for Gabe while “Saltine Cracker” was fighting for his life. My friend Audra, named her, her first name. We finished her middle and last. We bought her at Pet Smart when she was Ten weeks old. She had light green feathers, two or three red feathers under her right-wing, a black tail, with a black cap head and a sweet disposition. Gabe ruffled those green feathers of hers one to many times. Towards the end of her life if she was out of her cage. She enjoyed sitting by him and watching his every move. When he “tried” to pick her up she would peck him! She loved my husband because he was the one who held her, cleaned her cage, and fed her. Steven acted like he always does during sad times. The middle wrinkle on his forehead gets bigger, his face looks clammy, he shuts down, and always look as if he’s about to flee the scene. When I asked him if he was okay he said he was feeling stressed out and he hated to see Saltine die.

When calling my mom for comfort, she asked me if we were taking care of the bird. She said when she was here last the bird was picking at itself. First off, that is what birds do, it’s called Preening. Lets just say when my moms bird died it had lost all its feathers. Saltine was loaded to the gills with feathers! My parents did not like the bird. They said it was the source for Gave and I always being sick.

My friend Audra had lost her cat the night before, my friend Nico lost her gecko, minutes before my bird died. I felt uncanny about how close together they all died and wondered if something was in the air. I mentioned my thoughts to Steve, he didn’t say much. I have to watch my thoughts. My anxiety gets the best of me. This last year I have had panic attacks. I TAKE medicine for them but it doesn’t ALWAYS help. I have heard if a bird drops dead it is usually the sign of a gas leak. At one point during this turmoil I just knew the air in our home was looking smokey, everything around me was blurry, and my stomach was bilious. I couldn’t tell you what snapped me out of it, maybe the medicine?

I had also taken a pregnancy test this same night and we found it negative. We have been trying for another baby for about three years now and haven’t had any news. We are not devastated just disappointed. It’s hard to believe the sun is going down on this part of my life.

Stay tuned

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My Six year Old

Has been into Pokemon cards. Don’t ask me what there all about because I have yet to figure it out? All I know is he loves to take them to his after school program and share them with other kids. He recently had them taken from him here at home because his listening skills have not been up to par. I gave them back to him a few nights ago and he’s been carrying them around like a kangaroo with her babies.

In the early morning hours around four last night. He climbed into bed with us, I barely opened my eye and there he was with his deck of cards resting right beside me. I was still in an unconscious state and was able to fall back to sleep. When I woke up around eight thirty this morning, I was lying on a bed of cards. It has been humid and sticky here lately so when I stood up a few cards fell off me and onto the floor. Barley awake I stumbled to the bathroom and sat down, a Pokemon card fell right out of my undies and into the toilet…

friendship · Home

Laughing To The Grave

Too Soon

Can anything be funny or are some things off-limits?

In my opinion, there are times you need to be serious and try not to make light of a situation. I also believe in serious moments, humor happens. Here are a few examples.

After our twins were born. The hospital gave us an option to have a visitation, people could come and see Willy and Gabe before they took them. I wasn’t for sure I was up to it or not but my husband had purchased mementos he wanted to give to everyone. That night all my friends, his parents, and brothers came up to visit. I was sitting up in bed, most of my friends were sitting on the side with me. A nurse who was assigned to my room when they first diagnosed my Premature Labor came in to tell me she was sorry to hear about my loss. She did this out of  genuine compassion because she was not assigned to me during this time. The whole room was quiet as she expressed her sympathy, which wasn’t easy at all for her to do. The only noise you could hear was people catching their breath and sniffing. My friend Sarah pats my arm, gets up off my bed, walks over and pulls a wad of kleenex out of the box and blows her nose like an eighty year old man in the doctor’s office with a hanky!  My friend Allison was the first one to laugh than me and after that there we all were!

I also chose for the hospital to put the funeral on for Gabe and Willy. Which took us to a cemetery here in town, it’s a big cemetery. They have a designated area for the babies, on top of a hill. You have to walk over another hill before you get to the top of this one. My mom, me and my friend Allison were watching people as they were trying to carefully walk down this muddy hill. One lady wasn’t so lucky as the mud got the best of her. To the ground she went and rolled like a barrel all the way down…

My dad is the serious one in my parents marriage. He secretly digs my moms humor, which sometimes involves him. Not long ago we were all out to eat together. We got on the subject of an acquaintance of theres who had a spouse that recently passed. They had found another companion. I asked my mom if she thought it was weird that she was “back in the saddle”. My mom says. “Shelley not at all, I’m engaged to be married the day after your dads funeral…” I laughed hard as my dad sat there shaking his head, rolling his eyes, and not even giving the slightest smile.

We have talked many times about where I work. My residents are Visually Impaired. When one of them passes on its hard for some of are residents to get out and go to their funeral. We have memorials here in the building in honor of the resident who passes away. This allows residents to be able to talk about their “good times”. We did this recently for “Jack” when he died. We had quite a few who came down. They sat in the dining-room. We have couches that make a square all the way around the room, They started from right to left, “Emmet” was on the other side which would make her last. They let everyone know that they had to wait their turn. Each one of the residents were standing up telling the preacher about one thing they remember doing with “Jack” or something funny he said. All the other residents and staff quietly sat and listened meanwhile Emmett was raising her hand, standing halfway up to try to raise it further, she would get tired of holding that hand up and start in with the other, grunting, moaning, whispering pick me pick me…

I call these “hold Ons” constellations to shine down on us in times of darkness giving us hope and a future.

 

Family · friendship · Home

Apartment 116 Second Half

Dear Reader,

Do you remember back in April when I wrote this post? Please take a minute to read so you can catch up on this resident of mine. I like to refer to as “Emmet Brown”. You know “Doc” from Back To The Future”? The reason I have named this resident after “doc” is because of privacy laws, which is crucial in the medical field. I also want you to be able to imagine her, not just her looks but demeanor also.

Our facility is one level. I don’t know the square foot right off-hand. It is however a square, that goes in a circle. This way residents know where they’re going. The middle of the wall is lined with a thick wooden rail in case the residents need them for guidance, since they are without site or if they need a little support for balance.

“Emmet”used to do her laps (exercise) around the hall wearing her headphones with these Giant, black, circled sunglasses, singing Belinda Carlisle “Circle In The Sand” it goes something like this.

Sundown all around
Walking thru the summer’s end
Waves crash baby, don’t look back
I won’t walk away again
Oh, baby, anywhere you go,
We are bound together
I begin, baby, where you end
Some things are forever!
Circle in the sand
‘Round and ’round
Never ending love is what we’ve found
And you complete the heart of me
Our love is all we need
Circle in the sand
Cold wind, tide move in
Shiver in the salty air
Day breaks, my heart aches
I will wait for you right here.
Oh, baby when you look for me
Can you see forever?
I begin baby, where you end
We belong together
Circle in the sand
‘Round and ’round
Rising of the moon as the sun goes down
And you complete the heart of me
Our love is all we need
Circle in the sand
Circle in the sand
Baby can you hear me?
Can you…

Every time she sang the round and round part she would actually circle round in round. She’s a lover of music. I know this because of the fourteen years I have been there. I bet you would never guess that she used to teach piano, she has her bachelors in music, she plays the piano by ear, and if you want to know a name of song, person, or group who sings it just ask, nine times out of ten she can tell you. This is phenomenal, at least to me? We have more Helen Keller stories.

I don’t want to take anything away from Keller but did you know her teacher Johanna “Anne” Sullivan? Who also was legally blind? She contracted trachoma a highly infectious eye infection, when she was eight years old which left her blind without reading or writing skills. Her mother also died around this same time and her father abandoned her because he felt he could not raise her and her brother on her own. They were sent to an almshouse in Tewksbury Massachusetts, her brother suffered from a debilitating hip ailment and died as well. She remained at Tewksbury for four years. She had eye operations that offered relief for her eye pain but proved ineffective. I-am not going to  plagiarise the whole story. I just want to give you the background of another phenomenal person who walked a step behind, read the story when you get time. I read it with another resident of mine a few nights ago. We both were taken back by what we didn’t know about Anne.

The home has offered me more than a laugh and I hope I gave you that clarity in this post, Also a part of the world that you miss and I don’t. Have you not felt that way in your life? Where you asked yourself why can’t everyone experience this?

The other day in Emmets room giving her, her medicine she informs me she is “Pissed” I do a double take because she is not a social person except to the voices in her head.

Me: Why are you “Pissed”

Emmet: I called Recycled Records to ask him when Charles Hardin Holley (Also known as Buddy) Birthday was? He told me an a firm voice, “I don’t know call your local library and ask them”

Me: Did you call the local library

Emmet: I called the operator and she didn’t know the number to the “local library” nor did she know when Holley’s Birthday was…

Me: Emmet what made you think of this question

Emmett: I was listening to his song “Think It Over” and starting thinking over his Birthday….

I always ask questions. You learn from them. My residents have taught me things I didn’t  know or thought about and these things I will take with me and not forget because of the way they tell the story.

Charles Hardin Holley (September 7, 1936 – February 3, 1959)

Johanna “Anne” Mansfield Sullivan Macy (April 14, 1866 – October 20, 1936) She died holding Keller’s hand. What started out as a “Job” being a teacher ended in a life long friendship…