Posted in Celebration, Dad, Family, Marriage, Mom

Two people fell in love

Many moons ago, two people found each other, fell in love and started a family. That’s how I came to be, the end result of love and passion. This is how our little family started and today I am the last carrying on traditions, our way of life, what was important and even what’s in a surname. I carry the family name within my heart. I will always remember my roots and where I cane from. I feel closer than ever to these two people that fell in love and gave life to me. As you celebrate in heaven your 61st wedding anniversary, I cheer you on with a great “happy anniversary” and live and miss you more than ever.

Posted in Awareness, Empowerment, Loss, Mom

Within your walls

I cry a lot when I am within your walls Mom. More than anywhere else. I suppose I’m distracted when I’m not here or when I’m busy. When sometimes out of the blue the door to your front loading washing machine opens as if it was touched by an invisible hand. I get the feeling it was your doing. It has never ever happened before, and I know it’s not just a coincidence. I know it was you, sending me a sign, letting me know you are here. I feel and see you everywhere. From all the strange noises and things that happen here, I am keenly aware that you are around me. So close, that often I cry for you because I can’t touch you and hug you. Like a lover remembers the touch and smell of a loved one, I can still feel your hugs. I can even smell you and feel the soft skin of your cheek on mine. As hard as it is, I now know that I made the right choice deciding on where I want to spend the rest of my life. I fear I am too weak to endure this sense of loss every day and I take comfort in the distance, not being exposed to all that is you at such close range. Even though I couldn’t carry you any closer within my heart. Here, in your home, the place of so much pain, your sorrow and hardship, it is here that it echoes the story of your life and brings me up close with the losses of mine. This loss will never go away, but I need the distraction of some distance. I can’t breathe new life into those walls, because these walls are not the same without you. Nothing can cancel this out, at least not for me.

I know you understand now and my heart has been an open book for you to see all there is. All the love, all the pain and yet, still the desire to go on and like you one day leave behind my own legacy. Not because I have to prove something, but because of the meaning and purpose I have worked towards. I am nearly packed now and I am taking little with me back to the states. Everything that is coming is special and there will be dotted reminders of you and my past throughout my future home, but I will also leave enough room to tell my own story. And what a story it is turning out to be. They say that there are three things a person can do to live eternally. One is to have a child. Two is to plant a tree. And three is to write a book. I am not going to make number one anymore, but I will definitely plant a tree and perhaps the idea of a book is now closer than ever. Maybe it wasn’t time to write it before, because there was simply too much of my story that hadn’t unfolded yet.

Posted in Challenges, Journey, Mom

Missing you just a little more today

Happy Mother’s Day in heaven Mom

There is so much to say but it’s very personal, even for me. I’m not one that hides from anything and I openly share my life on here, but I am still processing. I have felt you closer than ever over the past weeks. I know you were with me during the signing of the sales contract of your house. Three Storks stood near the road as I drove by and it is said that storks symbolize a mothers love.

I finally understand. I know that you were always here for me. What I needed was different than what you learned to give or even what you’ve been given. You were never shown or taught but that doesn’t mean that your love wasn’t there. Mom I wished we could have known each other in much greater detail, but even so I could never have loved you more. Mom I miss you and being surrounded by your walls that soon will belong to another, has been hard.

I have learned many lessons in this important trip and I know now that you are walking right besides me. My heart lies before you, open, honest and raw. Not one feeling is hidden and my gift to you is to look deep and see the love that has always been.

Posted in Emotions, Journey, Life, Mom

Carrying you with me

Mom”s little brooch on my suit jacket

Last Wednesday was the signing of the sales contract for the house. The night before felt strange, as if I was sleeping in the house for the last time as the rightful owner. After my signature there would be no turning back and a sense of finality made itself apparent. I struggled all the way up until that day, asking Mom to help me, to be present, to send a sign.

On the way to the notary I saw three storks playing in a field near the road I was driving by and instantly I knew Mom was with me. We have a special story about storks and counting over 50 one day. I also took her with me, wearing her broach on my suit jacket and I knew that we would walk this path together. We’ve shared a few profound paths together in the end, still alive and in death.

The signing took nearly 90 minutes and I felt nothing. There was no sadness, no relief, no remorse, worry, or else. I was numb, just doing what needed to be done. I knew part of it was shock, trauma, and years of fear processed and coming into reality. And I knew there was more to come and it wouldn’t simply bypass me in this sense.

Posted in Anxiety, Challenges, Mom, Struggle

Triggers

Mom on her Wedding day with my uncle and Dads brother and wife to the right

The journey has intensified over the last couple of days and many feelings and emotions have surfaced. Whether it is finding some hidden treasure that speaks to my heart or a childhood memory, or whether it is feeling, the light entering the room at a certain time, or perhaps I am given glimpse and a better understanding of the person my Mother was, it is definitely pulling on my heartstrings like never before. I feel deep inside my heart the love she always carries for me, a live she struggles to show and yet it doesn’t mean that it wasn’t there. It was and I try hard to steer away from the risk of feeling that I have wronged her in many ways. Like she hurt me not being able to show her love, I have wronged her by not seeing it anyways. But this is not a time for blame and who did what. Time has passed and is now gone, and I am here feeling her love, feeling my love and it still hurts and nearly breaks my heart. Grief is love unexpressed, unable to give it to a living person.

I cried today. Overcome, I cried today. Not inwards, swallowing all the sound, unable to express the raw emotions, no…I cried today. Loud, letting it all flow, expressing the pain my heart still holds. It was a cleansing cry, but also one of loneliness and missed time that will never return. Still I walked besides you and felt you with me as I opened my heart for you to see all the love it always held for you.

Later in the day I went to the cemetery and picked/ordered your headstone. It will be a heart with your name, dates and a dragonfly added to Dads and for the past nearly three years, your grave. I made it so I will always be able to take the heart with me at a later time when the grave time runs out. You see I carry your heart with me wherever I go.

Tomorrow is the signing of the sale for the house and it’s another trigger that makes the tears flow. I don’t have to be out of the house until June and yet it feels like my last night here. At least as the owner of what you’ve built with so much hard work and dedication. After tomorrow I can’t go back and I know I can’t go forwards either keeping the house. I know I am doing what must be done but it still makes my heart bleed all over the place and I wish you were here to hold and hug me just once more. This is hard Mom and I miss you.

Posted in Death, Mom, Pain, Sadness

The nights are the worst

Sometimes, I crave solitude and an escape from the chatter when things get too busy. Yet when I have it and when I am alone, these night of solitude become the worst ones of all. When the day comes to a rest and I’m no longer distracted, the truth of these haunting walls where Mom lived and resided for so many years, close in on me. I can feel their loneliness, their pain and I can hear their cry’s, while adding my own. Some days my heart feels heavy and I suppose even those times are needed and a part of the process. Being right here, where it all happened, where only walls heard the cries of loneliness is yet different vs thinking about it from afar.

For the longest I contemplated moving back, to transform this sadness and breathe a new life into these walls, letting my love cancel out the pain. I always knew I could, and I was convinced of that, being stronger, allowing love to cure all. Eventually I realized that it would merely be a sad attempt to take away the pain, to lift the burden for the one who carried it all, and who is no longer amongst us. Today my own cries add to these walls because I too was left behind and I too miss someone dearly.

I love you Mom and I miss you every day.

Posted in Europe, Mom, Travel

The Storks are back in town

Stork nest on the roof

Today marks my one week arrival in Germany. It’s been a busy week and I am happy about the progress made so far. I have worked nonstop and I know that soon or later I need to take a break as to not burn out. Besides, a little “me time” is on order as well. I yearn for the silence of my tiny abode and I miss my little girl a great deal. What a difference from just a few weeks ago. Physically I am holding up better than anticipated and even the additional movement, no matter how difficult and painful, seems to help. I appear to be growing stronger and besides, I am medicated.

Sometimes it’s easy to think that I can relax a little and that I am still at the very beginning of my journey here, but I know how quickly time can sneak up and before I will know it the weeks will have passed. I rather have crunch time now and the possibility to relax later and enjoy, vs taking it easy now and stressing out later because there is no time left.

The storks have returned to a town near my village and also to Rothenburg where I am staying, mainly, with my uncle. Seeing them definitely brought a smile and Mom was always fond of the storks. On a little toad trip she once counted over 50 of them, out in the fields, walking on the side of the road, or on rooftops just like this one. Round iron cradles atop the roof are provided by many people for a royal nest and the return of the storks each year. It’s a sight I always look forward to when I am back home, here in Germany.

Posted in Choices, Life, Mom

Contact has been established – let’s do this together

I’ve been sitting a lot in the company of spirit lately. Although not physically here, Mom continues to come around and she makes it known that she is here with the flicker of a light or other shenanigans like it. Her favorite seems at night when I go to bed and set the phone onto the iHome docking station. The light goes off and I tuck myself in. Most nights, without a touch, the phone turns back on and lights up for a few moments despite the do not disturb setting in effect. It’s as if she is telling me goodnight and letting me know that she is here. We have taken several final walks together and this is another one that I need to do in her spiritual presence. I need her to understand, to accept and to forgive me.

I’ve been calling to her a lot lately and I think she knows that I need her. I can only hope that she can validate my decision to sell her house, and that she understands the reasons behind it. I know she always wanted me to take over the house, to come home and to uphold all the hard work she put in place over all the years. I am in no way and form physically or mentally capable to uphold what used to be her dream. Being truthful with myself, I know it is not my dream, which still doesn’t make this coming to terms thing any easier.

A “for sale” sign has been placed into the window and I got to text with one of the parties that has toured the house twice and committed to buying it. A direct contact has been established and I couldn’t be more grateful about where the house will end up. Hopefully once all the details are cleared. So far we have agreed on the sell price and a lot of understanding and sensitivity has been placed around travel and what I have to do to clear the house. It was even offered to be sent remodel pictures so I can see the progress. The offer was very sweet but will be one of those bittersweet moments. However, the curious and the will to know is greater than the fear of going down memory lane. I think it will provide some peace for me at some point, although I will always remember that it should have been me doing this, and that it is how Mom envisioned it. I hope I can let go of the disappointment she must have felt about me, of the feeling of being let down. I hope that Mom will recognize all the loving work and dedication that is going into the house she loved so much even if it’s not coming directly from me.

My covid booster shot (yeah, don’t remind me) is due or available I should say on March 9th. I think it will be essential to take care of this before I go. Not to prevent anything as we all know it doesn’t, but for the sake of politics. I am afraid that the rules will change once more and I might face trouble coming back if I’m not fully vaccinated and boosted. So better safe than sorry, at least in that respect. Plus I am hoping it is literally giving me a boost like it did the last time. I don’t know if I could dare to believe it was a coincidence (yeah, we know I don’t believe in those) that after the first dose the RA improved. After the second shot I even hiked the Wave. Almost unimaginable right now as this temporary high has worn off. But if I get another after the booster, it will come in perfect timing.

I am planning to give myself until the end of May to get everything done. That is if the buyer will allow me this much time, which I hope for and need. And for at least that time, the blog will fall silent and I won’t be able to write. The occasional wifi connection might allow me here and there to stop by, but my time needs to be committed elsewhere. I know you understand and I already here you telling me to take all the time I need. I will write and pin a final post before I go and finally get this contact page done in case you need or want to make contact with me. Until then, I’ll keep you posted as I hang onto my seat. Life is changing rapidly.

Posted in Holidays, Inspiration, Mom

Christmas Eve…2021

It’s going to be a white Christmas this year and the next snowstorm is on the way. With it, significant amounts of snowfall is expected and severe warnings to wrap up travel have been issued. It’s a Christmas we all envision, with a world covered in an innocent blanket of white. Picture perfect, my world is surrounded by snow covered pine trees and the occasional deer strolling by. For me it will be a quaint, simple Christmas and I will focus on as many comforts as possible during this time that so easily could have me feeling the holiday blues. It’s still a time when loved ones on earth and in heaven are missed just a little extra.

I have felt Mom’s presence more than ever this season, and I know she is by my side. I can see the effort she has made, coming to learn about my side of things vs being so focused on her view like she has been all these years in her time on earth. Now in heaven, nothing is secret anymore as she looks into my heart and sees my deepest thoughts and pain. Everything and all is on the table. There is no mistaken anymore, no more misunderstanding, it’s all there. It seems as if old ways of thinking have been released, and without any spoken words from her, the message couldn’t be any louder. I feel her support and she is showing it through ways I could have never imagined. It makes the holidays “without” even more bittersweet and she will be with me throughout a little bit more than usual. I will find some one on one time with her, to dedicate my love all over to her and to thank her while remembering her and her memory.

So huddle and be close to your loved ones this holiday season. Count your blessings if you have them to unite in person. Take a moment and slow down, to breathe it all in and feel every moment with every sense. Create new memories that will be passed on for years to come and enjoy this season of love and giving.

Posted in Awareness, Grief, Holidays, Mom

I know you’re here

Ah yes, the holidays. A time to gather, give thanks, enjoy each other’s company and be merry and bright. It’s a time for giving, for random acts of kindness, of being just a little friendlier and forgiving, and a time for caring warmth and the spirit of Christmas within our hearts. But for many it’s a time that emphasis what’s been missing or a lack throughout the year. It can make the already lonely world an even lonelier place. It can make the hurt sting just a little more, and it can bring a aching heart nearly to the breaking point.

Christmas has always been my favorite holiday but for most of my life it was a time I felt torn between my family here in the States and the one of my homeland in Germany. For me it was always a time, hustling, running a busy retail store, while missing so many traditions and customs I grew up with in Germany. Christmas always felt incomplete, or different I might correct myself. If I dare to say that it was incomplete, I say so because certain expectations were not met and these days I work hard to shed those expectations and catch myself whenever I become aware that I am holding them. To me expectations are linked to disappointment, to hurt and a further ache within my heart. I work hard to avoid it and do what’s within my control, the rest is not up to me.

But it is true and Christmas always held a certain longing for me. Whether it was traditions that I missed or whether it was being away from the people that meant so much, I could never be in two places at once and therefore I could never escape that feeling. Well, I brought onto myself by leaving like Mom always used to say. In other words it was my fault and I wanted it that way. Now I had what I was asking for. In reality it was more like I could have never imagined all the details, some small and insignificant at the time, and how big they would become one day. At that young age I could have not realized the big picture and everything that it would involve. I could have not known that it was a lifestyle change that would impact my forever. I was young and in love, I lived for that moment, my immediate, and while I practice this today because that particular moment, the NOW is all we ever have, I gave little thought to the future and what would and could be.

It’s been two years since Mom has passed and I feel her more and more these days. Especially over the last 6 months, there has been more of a presence and I could swear sometimes she messes with me and gets a good laugh in. I have written about signs from your deceased loved ones before, when feathers appear or the communication through electricity which seems to be Mom’s favorite lately. I be sitting here typing away on my lit electronic keyboard and it starts to flicker and light up like a Christmas tree, becoming unresponsive until the debacle decides itself that it’s enough. I go in the bathroom and the light can be operated form a switch in the wall or the ceiling. It’s set to operate from the switch yet it doesn’t work from time to time and only functions from the ceiling until I reset it. Yet nobody has turned it on from the ceiling. Or I go to bed, phone charging on my IHome station and all of a sudden the entire room is illuminated because Mom starts messing with the phone, turning the screen on. “I know you’re here”’ or “Not now Mom” is usually what I mumble and what comes over my lips with a smile. I do miss you and two years later it all still feels so fresh. Grief is love unexpressed and some holes can’t be filled, not all pains go away and not all hearts are mended like they were before. Grief changing us forever, so hold tight to the ones you love, for every moment is special and precious.