Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Choosing the Right Path

I am back home after a great trip to Pennsylvania/DC/New York City. (More on that in another post.) Married Daughter and her husband will be moving to Wisconsin next month, so I took one last trip to see them before my new job begins next week. Ahh, summer.

D was always intrigued by the fact that there was a defined beginning and end to every school year. In business, the years must just pile on top of each other. But in teaching? There is always a clean line drawn between one classroom full of students and the next.

I like that order, too. I enjoy finishing a school year up and locking the classroom door behind me each May, heading off into summer. I remember my thoughts two years ago as I went home to face a terminal diagnosis with D that came to fruition six weeks later. I know my thoughts last summer were set on crossing the one year anniversary of that loss. I was convinced that some measure of closure would be reached--and it was. This summer? I feel as if I am stepping into a new life that is not clouded by the shadows of the past two years.

It has surprised me to discover that I no longer tell people who are unfamiliar with my past about losing D. If they ask about my family I will volunteer the fact, but I don't feel that his death is the defining point of my life anymore. If you have been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know what a huge paradigm shift this is in my life. I think of D often with love and fond memories, but the loss is no longer the largest part of my identity.

I know that I am standing on the thresh hold of a very clear passage in my life. I no longer wear my wedding bands after two years of off-and-on, on-and-off jewelry dilemmas. My goal during this last week of vacation is to put D's belongings I cherish the most on a set of shelves in his former study. I don't want it to be a shrine of any sort: just a special collection that will bring smiles and sweet memories.

In some ways, it feels like I have been awakened from a long, long dream. I realize that I totally let my yard go since July 2009, and am thankful for the grace of the neighbors as I scramble to hire a landscaper. I realized I've worn the same black purse for two years because it was simply easier. I find myself seeking out new colorful purses and clothes with a vengence. The fog has lifted from my brain and I am reading many books at once (oh, Kindle, you are my friend!), pursuing complicated paperwork that was languishing in boxes, and thinking in a pragmatic, clear and organized way that lets me know good changes are ahead.

"The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
And miles to go before I sleep."
Robert Frost


Locketts said...

I so enjoyed this refreshing post. Enjoy your summer. Can't wait to read about your principal adventures. I think you should wear a tiara at your new post, just so everyone knows you're in charge:)

AngAK said...

I found you through Boo Mama and I can so relate to your post today. Your words could be my words---if I were a clever word person, which I am not----give me numbers please! I lost my DH 2 1/2 years ago, and this journey out of the fog is just that---a journey. I wish you continued peace and joy as you make your way in this world. My wedding is coming up at the end of July---I'm marrying a good friend and I just know my DH is smiling and at peace that he no longer needs to worry about me.

Dawn said...

What a wonderful post and outlook! I am so excited to see what your new path hold in store for you - full of blessings, I am certain!

I'll stop by your new office one day. What will be your summer hours?

Anonymous said...

I feel like I should say, "Good MORNING FRIEND!" So excited to see what is ahead and agree that you will so enjoy you life you will not be aware of age!!! Live Big!

Sue Anne McKinney said...

I just sensed such a sweet peace while I was reading your words...reminded again that God is walking alongside us thru each day and whatever that day brings. I loved the poem at the end.

Lynn said...

I love this post. You have progressed through your grief journey so well. I remember that jewellry dilema. I am so excited for you as you start a new path. Enjoy my friend!

Buttercup said...

So excited to see all the good things that are ahead for you and so disappointed that I missed seeing you in New York. I just bought a bright blue fabric bag for the summer -- which follows the red one which got shabby -- and I so like using the bright colors. !