Category Archives: Senior Life

A MEMORY COMPANION

He thought enough of me
to converse a thousand
kinds of conversations
over thousands of days.

He thought enough of me
to break bread a thousand
kinds of epicurean delights
over thousands of meals.

He thought enough of me
to court me every day
with romance and love
enough to fill a fine book.

He thought enough of me
to make millions of memories
very sweet and love true
over millions of moments.

He thought enough of me
to vow before almighty God
to love, trust, and cherish
until death we do part.

How do I finally say goodbye?
How do I redirect my vows
from my forever true love
to any possibility of other.

My heart yearns to turn
the dimension of time
infinitely backwards
to my comforting memories.

Now it has become painful
to bottle up the thousands
of leftover I love yous
trapped in my heart.

I have become lonely
since he went to be
with The Lord above
who loves us completely.

I will confess to His Spirit
my forever true Friend
who lives deep inside
my forever soul and spirit

I find as time goes by
a million unstoppable
new thoughts and feelings
bubbling up inside my heart.

I dream of an imagined love
who converses and dines
with a different sort of me
making memories anew.

And I wonder is it possible
from our Creator, above
to have in His plan for me
another memory companion.

Texas Lady Juanita

Copyright © 2019 by Juanita Holloway-Walters

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BLUE WIDOW

by Texas Lady Juanita

Whatever will I do
To stop being so blue
About my sentiments true
Of left-over love for you?

The best love I ever gave
In my entire blessed life
Not ending at your grave
My being your faithful wife.

I dream of you passionately
Of trysts stirring deep in my soul
Of realities I created magically
Of fantasies I do happily extol.

At death we did truly part
New memories at an end
But the vow etched on my heart
I now know I must surely rend.

For marriages have no heavenly face
In scriptures there is truth of His place
You are now in God’s dimensional space
And I am still on Earth by His holy grace.

With my abundance of extra love
In loneliness, what shall I, must I do
With The Lord’s blessings from above
And endless possibilities ever anew.

Please do not jump to conclusions
There are many types of loving joy
Likened to myriads of love transfusions
Life’s positive building blocks we employ.

Copyright © 2019 by Juanita Holloway-Walters

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HAPPY NEW YEAR

First, the eulogy I have only just now been able to write,
for my husband who went to be with Jesus January 16, 2018. I am almost whole again. Yes, it is true, I have been defined by a beautiful word most of the prior 23 years before this one. The word is exquisite. It is full of everything a woman comfortable in her own skin feels when loved in equal measure by someone she loves. There is nothing that compares to feeling like this – nothing. It is born from a simple touch by one who exudes trust with every smile, tear, word, lyric, touch, kiss, intimacy, and commonality of faith in our loving Creator. It has been my pleasure and my honor to love and be in love with John.

On this, our first anniversary apart (New Year’s Eve 11:45 p.m.), I can still close my eyes, and feel exquisite from memory. The Lord gets the glory of this thing He defined for us; this thing called marriage. In this I have been blessed beyond measure. With each passing day I feel John’s presence a little less. I have felt my Mamma’s presence every day since her passing, but not so with John. I sense beyond about a dozen dimensions, that he is happy and very busy. I should not be surprised that The Lord would have lofty uses for my Marine in the Spiritual Battles waged in Heaven above. I imagine John as nothing less than a Colonel. His faith was alive and real every hour of every day.

Moving on to the here and now.
I am happy and at peace. I have odd thoughts of a new chapter in my life beginning soon. I am a little afraid. The only chapter I got right in my life was the last one with John. Before that – before the healing of Juanita through our Lord and Savior – I was broken and unable to pick a man to be my husband who was interested in the long term with me. I remember concluding that I must not be lovable. Oh, what a sad feeling that was. But, The Lord knew better, and healed my heart and soul. I just need to remember to trust in The Lord’s plan for my life – harder said than always done. I know we are each here for God’s glory.

My spine doctor managed to avoid the comparative MRI results of my spine – 2018 MRI vs. 2015 MRI – for a few visits, but we finally broached the subject. The words I was left with in my mind are “awful mess.” The words he used, in obvious hopes I would let it go, were ‘a lot of scarring, a lot of wear and tear, and much degeneration’. Well hell, I guess if you have Degenerative Spine Disease (as well as RA, OA, Fibro, Neuropathy, and IBS) for forty years, much degeneration is to be expected. The week before my PCP had called up the MRI on the screen to assure me that the results were in. He looked at the screen, my face, and quickly shut it down. I had not seen the “awful mess” picture before, and now know why no one ever shows the film to me. As a lay person, I cannot get the words “awful mess” to go away. But, I am still a tribute to my stubbornness. I walk, take good care of myself, my dog, and my belongings. I think I enjoy my roadster convertible so much because with the wind in my hair, I feel like I am running; and when the music is good, I am dancing.

This last few weeks I have had unexpected feelings of joy just bubbling out of me! Joy, my old friend, did not abandon me after all. I think my beautiful and talented Grandgirls have had a lot to do with this. They are both an awesome blend of their mamma and daddy. I admit that one of them is a mini-me! Well, she is the me I would have been, had I been raised in a less stressful parentage, and much more nurturing. I love them both with every fiber of my being in such a special way that I had never hoped to have with grandchildren. Sadly, because of the continuing war between their parents, my other three older grandchildren have been weaponized by the situation with their parents against me. Their father because I am my daughter’s mother; and their mother because if she cannot have them, then no one else can either. I pray for them every day, for their war wounds are obvious, and deep. I love my daughter, and my grandchildren from afar. I have been wondering if what The Lord has in store for me on my path has to do with helping broken families in some way, since I have come to understand so many dynamics in this field of study.

Well, my goodness, I sure did cover a huge field of HAPPY NEW YEAR. I am getting things out in the open to begin the New Year right. I don’t believe in New Year’s Resolutions. They are like laws that can only condemn when we fall short of the mark. Last night at midnight I asked my Grandgirls to tell me one of their dreams for their future. I told them that this is what we will do each New Year’s Eve from now on. They didn’t take it very seriously, but as the years go by they will get the hang of it. I pray they continue this tradition into their adult years, and beyond. Dreams make our world go around and around in hope, love, faith, and joy. God bless you today and always.

You may quote me in these thoughts,
Texas Lady Juanita
Copyright © 2019 by Juanita Holloway-Walters

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WANTED: LAWYERS TO REPRESENT BABY BOOMERS IN CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT

WANTED: LAWYERS TO REPRESENT BABY BOOMERS IN CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT.
Millions of Baby Boomers need a class action suit against their Congress for giving away our Social Security and our Medicare funds to those who did not pay into the system. Congress is giving our funds away deliberately to bankrupt BABY BOOMERS, and the USA.
You may quote me in this,
Texas Lady Juanita
Copyright © 2018 by Juanita Holloway-Walters

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EVERYDAY LOVE

It began long ago, It seems . . .
With a prayer to The Lord above.
Longing for the man of my dreams;
Asking God to pick my true love.

The excitement of our first good-night kiss;
That he swore said, “love me forever” –
Led quickly to Godly union in marital bliss,
And a double familial blending endeavor.

And I cry,
For the memories,
Of our everyday love.

Unexpected gifts of words,
Collected in a private file,
Of verses for song birds,
Composed to make me smile.

Surprise weekend destinations;
No phones; no briefcases; no teens.
O.M.G! Such romantic locations!
Where memory films the scenes.

And I cry,
For the memories,
Of our everyday love.

Careers blossomed with fun and spectacular style.
Soon we enjoyed our comfortable empty nest,
A time for loving, and life slowed down for a while;
We knew beyond all measure were we blessed.

Could this honeymoon marriage last the rest of my life?
“I am sorry, it is not to be for you.” I was told.
“You will help your love until death. You are a good wife.”
But why punish me, how can You be so cold?

And I cry,
For the memories,
Of our everyday love.

(Rev 21:4 )
“And God shall wipe away all tears
neither shall there be any more pain:”
With these words He vanquished my fears,
My love is joyful again in His Heavenly Plane.

(Jeremiah 29:11)
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord,
“plans to prosper you and not to harm you,
plans to give you hope and a future.“ I have your word.
I pray to know why I am still here, alone and so blue.

And still I cry,
For the ever-vivid memories,
Of our everyday love.

Texas Lady Juanita
Copyright © 2018 by Juanita Holloway-Walters
All Rights Reserved.

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UPDATE JOHN AND JUANITA / COMING OUT OF HIDING / BEN-JAMIN!!! FREAKING FRANKLIN (Loving the Founders still.) HMMM, WE WILL CALL THIS ONE TRANSITION.

.
picture-for-3-foot-wide-canvasThis Texan has been transplanted in Ohio / the farm belt / and I am a very happy camper!
This photograph is part of our Ohio family – taken not too long ago by a professional photographer in our home. Katie – our new via son-in-law, 14-year-old, Grandgirl. Beautiful, smart, funny – thank you Lord for one with so much promise, and a new generation of Birthday slumber parties in my basement.
David and Natalie Pumpkin (lol – chances of new son-in-law, David, thinking I think their last name is Pumpkin is remote), and me and my love John. You can see for yourselves that John and I really are the Happy, Fluffy (well-fed), (short), People. I am wearing 4” heels. Please don’t tell my doctor.

Natalie and I . . . it is on our faces . . . reunited, daughter and mother. I am so proud; I am popping my buttons. Perfect? No. She doesn’t have to be with me. But she is a very amazing woman. College degreed about the time her oldest became an adult, flying further in her career ambitions than she had imagined, blame me for this food item – putting a hot meal on the table for her family almost every night, and pursuing new interests – wow. John and I are on her new interests list. She has been a huge and loving help for us. Thank you Lord for Natalie. The Lord, and Natalie get all the credit. She is the apple that didn’t fall far from the tree – and that is all I had to do with it.

John and I are each other’s care taker, and I think we both need a little help to unravel what that means going forward. This is interesting to me in that I think it may be something I will write about in the near future. I no longer have the identities I used to have: corporate whiz kid fast-tracker (innate leader and problem solver type A person LOL!!! – a type Z personality now in these senior years?), 27 years being a mother – close up and personal raising of children — identities I liked about myself. At 64, half of my identity is John (and opposite for him). Fear of losing half of one’s identity is very scary – ESPECIALLY when the love of one’s life is at stake – not to mention my best friend.

I have tackled this by creating memories every single day – and actively think about it when I pray each day about the next day.  We have learned to play each day by ear. We love our new (to us) Ohio home so much, that we have more fun at home than going out on date night.

It may have taken us a long time to fix up the deck that was ugly, but we do get the most romantic of results . . . if “Home” is romantic to you – and it is to me. This is the end of the home projects we started last November 17, 2015.

We are truly blessed beyond measure. We no longer look at days as “good days” or ” bad days”; but!!!! for us, pain, disease, etc. is what it is – and it DOES NOT get to define us – WE REMAIN THE HAPPY FLUFFY PEOPLE.

Please do pray for us, we do have some medical difficulties that are wearing us down a little. It is good that we love well; I don’t know how couples without our love get through it all. We are, and have been each other’s “care taker” in the home, and we get tired, but not beaten. To my friends, thank you for your prayers.

COMING OUT OF HIDING . . .  You would think that disease (his and mine), me going Septic and almost dying in later October, going through with the November 1st move from Texas to Ohio, BEING A SNOW VIRGIN – WOW I LOVE IT!!!, remodeling of our Ohio home with huge success, doing the front yard (wasted some $$ there), and the deck project in the back yard is why I have been mostly absent from talking to all of you out there (if there is anyone left out there looking for my words LOL!!!), but that would be a wrong assumption.

Many months ago I came back around to a topic that I have avoided for years. It is a good thing, because I have been forced to not only re-think my position, but to better understand what God has to say on the subject. It is a hard subject, and I will leave it a mystery for now – just know that it is the one that almost made me stop publishing my thoughts. I write almost every day. To bring you the new subject, I will have a formal burning of my piles and piles and piles and piles of notes – and begin new with my heart open to you and the Lord.

As soon as I tell you about Benjamin Franklin, I will close for today, and start building the bon-fire of notes in the BBQ Pit – Wish it was a cooler than 50’s night, I would just burn them in the fire place that I love. Speaking of fire places – I remembered from my childhood at my grands in NJ that fireplaces were for roasting marshmallows (until S’mores came to Texas Girl Scouts, I happily thought it a Yankee activity). I can take a long fork, put 2 Marshmallows (from my secret stash), turn the gas on, and be eating the gooeyness of them all in about 60 seconds. YUM

NOW FOR BENJAMIN . . .
“The refusal of King George III to allow the colonies to operate an honest money system, which freed the ordinary man from the clutches of the money manipulators was probably the prime cause of the Revolution.” Benjamin Franklin

You all must know by now that America has been in the clutches of the money manipulators for a long, long time. Lucky for Americans and American prosperity, two things were at play until the last 40 years or so:
1. God’s protection to this Republic that was created for God’s Glory (not going to waste time proving that again. Either you are well read and know this, or you are happy letting the money manipulators write your history for you.)
2. The Money Manipulators kept out of sight far enough to let America be the shining example on the hill. Sadly, as soon as they decided to come out into the light, and destroy America, the majority of American’s lost their faith, and belief in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Don’t believe me? Just turn on the television. On a side note: Satan is laughing his “buttocks” * off when he sees the young folk making the millennium old hand sign beckoning him to them. Sad, but true.

*My attempt to use a politically correct word. Why is this a better word than ass?????

Okay, the following explanation is OVER simplified for the hope of my making my point about money:
Money should be based on labor – man hours’ possible x 3 levels of population – 1. Dig the ditch level of labor; 2. Build the infrastructure of all the buildings and ditches; 3. The truly talented and CREATIVE – and I don’t mean those that can dunk a basketball – I mean those that can create a clean water system in the desert so all men have water (go R. O. Systems for Africans who are living in a place where the natural water is undrinkable!) X population of all 3. There would be a formula for how much money should be in circulation, which can be corrected daily via a computer program I could probably write, and that actually puts me in labor camp 2. above, though I would aspire to work myself into 3. above.

What you have is a bunch of paper that the Federal Reserve (a corporation that has nothing to do with our government / Congress which is supposed to be printing our money) gives to America, and charges America interest to do this! For printing paper! NO. Now days, for typing 1’s and 0’s into a computer program. For this, we paid /owe them trillions in interest over decades upon decades of charging us this interest.
This is thievery on a level so deeply wrong that those who perpetrate this system on Americans should all be thrown under the jail forever (and he, the chief instigator of this will be one day thrown into a pit of fire). If a court made the Fed give back all the interest they should never have been paid – because it was stolen under false pretenses to the American public – we, as a nation would not be in debt.

Some will say that if the Fed didn’t do what they did, we would never have been a great country. LAUGH OUT LOUD AT THAT. We are Americans. We are different. We have been exceptional up until the Fed took the mask off and I am ashamed to say – they bested Americans through trickery, and through everyone’s greed (Enron, .COMS, UNEARNED HOMES, the war on poverty that has created the most horrible never-ending poverty system the world has known, the war on drugs in which politicians and drug lords ensure we will never win . . . the coming college education loan bubble). All of those BUSTED BUBBLES? Well, Americans were tricked into them in part, and American’ s are still learning a hard lesson about greed, and the death of their faith.

. . . I bought some bushes, ground cover, and a tree for our new front yard from the biggest nursery online I could find. I bought a one-year guarantee. When the tree died, and now the bushes and ground cover are dying, I tell John – go and get our new tree and bushes, please. John reads the fine print. I am going to have to pay half price for them (I paid half price originally). So, if I am stupid enough I will buy them again for half price – NO WAY!!! John pointed out that the one-year guarantee only cost me $4.95.

AMERICA! WHEN YOU SET OUT TO GET SOMETHING FOR NOTHING – DO NOT BE SURPRISED THAT NOTHING IS WHAT YOU WILL END UP WITH. Juanita

Boy, do I feel stupid!!!! $4.95 for a one-year guarantee on hundreds of dollars’ worth of a tree, bushes, and ground cover?  Shame on me. I do know better.

Folks that think you should pay someone who flips hamburgers the same as the man who designs and builds homes, and the same as the man who saves lives, are foolish. We are seeing first hand this week what happens when you pay millions of dollars to a man who plays a game, and you pay Firemen, Policemen, and Marines a pittance in comparison. One, we need to re-check our value system. Two, we need to unpeg our dollars from the Fed, and re-peg it to the labor of Americans who work – physical labor, supporting labor, and creating labor. I worked my way up from physical labor to supporting labor faster than many folks, and I worked my butt off. My fuel was to raise my kids to be the best Americans I could muster with all my WORK, heart, prayers, and soul. Being an American was, and is a worthy thing to be for us Baby Boomers and our parents – Americans are amazing. Because of my values, my children are each equally successful, part supporting labor, and part creative labor. We better hope that the majority of Americans under the age of 45 are the same type of Americans as my children.

It didn’t happen by accident. When my son thought money was growing on trees – in his mid-teens, I arranged with my business owner a summer job for him. My son, that I love, squatted down with a jack-hammer punching holes in concrete for rebar; and he accused me of trying to kill him . . . LOUDLY FOR ALL MY BUSINESS OWNERS AND SUBORDINATES TO HEAR!!!!!!! . . . (we were all older and wiser LOL) . . . and on the day, 2 weeks in, that he received his first paycheck, he stopped crying, and started being the best jack-hammer operator there is. At the end of the summer, he bought a used Dodge truck that he loved, and we had to say NO, you cannot quit school to work. Jeeeeesh, kids – gosh I miss my little. people . . . then my young people. They have little people and young people of their own, and I am proud.
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So, I am not going to hide anymore behind the one commentary that I hated to have to write. I will publish it sometime in the next couple of weeks; for I know I must conquer this one or stop writing. Love to you all. Prayers for you all; and I do thank you for your prayers for my love and I.

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NEW POLITICAL PARTY

Join my new political party:
GOP SBBC
GRUMPY OLD PEOPLE
SUCCESSFUL BABY BOOMER CLAN
The enemy within may have worked covertly to take over our nation – while we worked hard and raised families; but the fluffy plump lady isn’t singing yet
in public (me).
WE OUTNUMBER THEM
IF WE ALL VOTE
AS A BLOCK
OF RIGHTEOUS CITIZENS.
Our numbers are so large that if they cheat this time – it will be obvious to every woman, man, and child on our nation.
Let us together take back our nation.
Beyond the election, Congress doesn’t want millions of Grumpy Old People to show up in DC in our RV’s to politely talk to them.
We started and ran the businesses and industries through the glory years of America. Not one more business should be lost on our watch. I wanna go to Heaven leaving our nation on solid ground.

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PATIENCE IS FAITH IN ACTION

I dialed the IRS to change my address. The recording said my wait time will be about 40 minutes. I put the phone on speaker phone, set it down in front of my computer, and realized I had zero stress over this long wait ahead of me. That is amazing!!! Maybe older people really are wiser? It would seem that the great patience of my youth has returned to me in my retirement years.
I searched the KJV Bible regarding patience in my laptop’s search engine. James 1:4 – 8 came up via several different prompts in the search engine. After reading all of James 1, I realize that patience is faith in action. I wish someone had pointed this out to me many years ago. I am now shamed to realize that I had all but lost my ability for patience during the years that John and I raised teens. If I had realized that patience is personified as faith in action, I would have put myself in check every time I turned into an impatient-screaming-mimi!!

James 1 (KJV)
1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.
2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
7 For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.
8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.
9 Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:
10 But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away.
11 For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.
12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.
13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:
14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.
16 Do not err, my beloved brethren.
17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:
20 For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.
21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.
27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

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LIFE – ALTERED A BIT – UPDATE

I have been meaning to write to those who have read my thoughts on the written page for years. Admittedly on and off – even a one-year silence when I was recuperating from surgeries waaaaay too close together. It is no exaggeration to say that I almost died from Septicemia and a fever over 106 degrees on the 18th of October. I have vague remembrance of people yelling at me . . . “What’s your name?” . . . “Where do you live?” I went to sleep in my bed, and woke up in ICU unable to answer those questions.

I remember the clear voice of the Holy Spirit telling me, “It is not your time; you have much left to do. You are going to have to fight your way back this time.” Er . . . um . . . didn’t I fight my way back after each surgery? After old incidents of abuse in my life? etc.? etc.? etc.?

In my mind I was in this huge block of ice, and fighting my way out of it for ten hours, TO LIVE – just to do it all over again for seven more hours. When the doctor asked me if I could do it just one more time, my husband and son reported to me later that I told the doctor, “ No. I would rather die than do that again.” The level of lactic acid in my arms and legs was high. I was actually fighting that fight with everything in me. The connection of the mind to every inch of the body is an amazing thing. I don’t remember saying I would rather die, but they are very trustworthy people I love, and I believe them. Wow, I wish I had not said it, because the fact of me saying it really upset the pair of them. I do remember thinking I have nothing left in me to fight any more. Thankfully, they didn’t need to apply the Arctic Sun panels a third time – what I perceived to be a block of ice, enveloping my body.

On the day I went home, I changed out of a hospital gown into a favorite Muumuu from Hilo Hattie’s in Hawaii. I do not remember any of my numerous hospital visits in which I didn’t change into my own gown or pajamas within 24 hours after surgery. How sick was I that I was just fine with my butt hanging out for anyone to see? I cannot fathom it, even though I went through it.

Being totally faithful that the Lord has my back 24/7/365 I told John that we would postpone nothing about this move from Texas to Ohio. I am still recuperating. When I think I feel better, I immediately go to that place in my organized little brain that says, “what can I do?” – those that know me, know that above all I am a doer. When I was younger, and up to about 59 or 60, I had the mindset of giving myself kudos for being the most amazing doer. A true Type A – I thrived on schedules, project deadlines, meeting many types of deadlines, and the NEVER ENDING to do list in my Day-Timer. I don’t remember that list ever being shorter than 40 or 50 line items. One line item might say – write an Employee Manual, or go to the doctor when you have time. Sometimes the items were added to the list quicker than I could work hard enough to get items off the list.

So, as of today what we have accomplished (bear with me I am making a point):
all belongings packed and soon will be out of the holding warehouse and on the way to us;
John has coordinated everything! (you cannot imagine – from certificate from a Vet that Gabby could Fly – to help with packing – to shipping our vehicle here – to airline tickets – to awesome hotel accommodations with a Jacuzzi for me – and more) no girl has a better and more loving husband than I do;
we closed on the home two nights ago;
last night two young folks – awesome friends of my daughter – earned some spending money by cleaning our home from top to bottom;
the carpet people have cleaned carpets, cleaned tile floors and sealed them today – tomorrow they will be installing something that kills mold, critters in the carpet, and other such wonderful stuff when dead;
yesterday I met with a local painter and directed him through the home with instructions to paint every wall my choice of an off white Satin, and notating all of the feature walls to be painted with my chosen colors (Oyster Bay, Daffodil, etc., the front door my favorite front door red, the shutters a Forest Green, in the near future when the spring brings warm days the brick will be painted a medium gray with white trim – it will be awesome!!!!);
yesterday John met with a local fence man and a 4’ black metal fence will surround Gabby’s back yard domain;
one day recently we went to buy our new Select Comfort King Size Bed (our old Queen size will be in the guest bedroom where guests can have fun adding air and taking air away to figure out their own sleep number LOL) – yes, somehow through it all we have both lost a lot of weight, but require more room – especially when John is feeling bad he needs his own King Size space; and he deserves all the space he needs;
we also made our way to Ashley furniture with a few pieces to add to what we have shipped here;
I have probably forgotten the other fifty items that John has done while I was in forced resting to heal.

I put you through all of that to show you how ignorant I have been about the recovery – and something they call Post Septic Syndrome. It is like no other recovery from illness or surgery I have ever experienced. I always believe that mind over matter is the mantra of the day – any day the last 63 years on planet earth. Sadly, I have actually been taking one step forward, and 3 to 5 steps back regularly in the last 26 days since I left the hospital. TALK ABOUT A STUBBORN FEMALE!!!!!!

For example: In airports I had a carry on and a purse and it was a huge challenge! Then we needed to get the rest of the luggage, and find our rental car only a shuttle-ride away. By the time we got to the hotel (one hour drive away) I was in honest fear that I was one step from being hospital-bound.

SO, I FINALLY ADMIT TO MYSELF AND TO JOHN THAT IF I AM ABLE TO DO WHATEVER THE LORD HAS IN MIND FOR ME – I must stop being the old Juanita and admit I cannot heal without timely rest and slow introduction of easy rehabilitation exercise to be of any real use to me or any one. I must not put my husband through any experience like the one he woke up to on October 18 when he could not wake me; and the ambulance personnel could not wake me. Unfortunately, the UTI that went septic needed the one antibiotic that previously caused severe tendonitis of my shoulders three years ago. It could not be avoided to save my life – only this time the severe tendonitis has also appeared in places like my elbows. In the balance, I will never complain. There were two other antibiotics, and fluids of kinds I cannot remember. Two IV’s and a pic-line being regularly used.

So, today, I can get all gussied up (takes forever – I am sooo slow!), and I may fool myself for a few hours that I am making progress, but that just isn’t going to work this time. I REMEMBER . . . I remember the clear voice of the Holy Spirit telling me, “It is not your time; you have much left to do. You are going to have to fight your way back this time.” OH!!!!!  Now, I get it.  John and Natalie have talked to me like I am six years old, and I deserved it. I must not turn into an obstinate old fool; and I must allow my body to heal over several months. When our belongings arrive soon, I must sit on the floor and empty boxes, and tell others where things belong. Wow. I remember when I would unpack in a day, and the kids would wake up to a home cooked breakfast the next morning. Those days are gone. My babies are 42, and 37 – YIKES!!!!!!

In reading about Post Septic Syndrome, I know that I am the lucky one! I am the best case scenario! I am thankful beyond measure – and I need to behave myself and continue to be thankful. Wow. I am thankful to be here. I still get to enjoy my days with John which are full of laughter and love. I also get to spend a lot of time with my Natalie pumpkin. We are BFF’s and we have so much fun. Poor David, Natalie’s husband, just shakes his head, smiles, and says, “there are two of them.” Hehehehehehehehe That is a good thing! Right?

Did I ever tell you folks how amazing my husband is?????? He is the rock star in this family. He is successfully fighting stage 4 cancer – it is being controlled and kept minimal. The bone healing medicine is healing bones. He isn’t 100%, and I don’t care if he cannot do things he used to do. I get to hold him, and laugh with him, and have adventures with him, even now. His phenomenon that I notice is that when he has nothing extra to do his numbers go up, and when he has organizing and research to do his test numbers go down!!! We just need to pace projects slowly so his test numbers stay down for many years to come. The Lord is faithful.

Before I close, I will tell you about a vivid full color dream I had a few days ago that I have not fully figured out the meaning of – but almost. In this dream John and I are perfect weight, and about 33 and 32 years old. I am in my going out dancing uniform of that age: strapless red (length below the knee) sundress with a full skirt, 4” high heeled sandals, and my big hair had nothing to do with teasing, but just had so much hair I didn’t always know what to do with it all! John is in uniform – Marine – and quite handsome and dashing. We are at a party, and we are dancing, laughing, and having a wonderful time – so in love. This is remarkable because I would not meet John in real life for over a decade after the time frame of the dream.

I am also in the dream, as I am today, 31 years older. I am telling my younger me that it is just a dream and not real, that we must wake up and then I can have the real John whom I love and laugh with every day – no matter what crap storms come our way. My younger me doesn’t want to leave the dream and basically ignores the older me, and is giving the younger John all of her attention. The 63 year-old me finally gets the younger me to agree to leave – and I wake up.

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REFINING FAITH

Life has presented some extreme challenges for me over recent time. As the stages of my life have rapidly taken one turn after the next, I had to stop today, and think about why. For about a year that quiet voice inside of me that the mature Christian comes to know as the Holy Spirit – the Lord’s connection to each of us, if we will only listen – has been telling me to study a book of the Bible I had read, but had not studied – Job. My Momma always told me, “Even a worm learns;” and so do I.

We all hear about “the patience of Job” or “why bad things happen to good people,” but that isn’t the core meaning of Job at all. It is this: Even when we are behaving like good Christians, penitent and asking for forgiveness for our transgressions, we can rock along for many, many years without our faith being refined. In the beginning of the book, Job was a good and faithful man; at the end of the book, even his faith was much further refined. Even after every disaster and loss of wealth and children, and his own health, Job’s faith was refined, and proven true.

After enjoying the mutual love with my children until their mid-30’s, I lost both of them to the world for different reasons. I became inconvenient in their lives, and they ejected me. This seems to be a reoccurring theme of many baby boomers and their children. The only way to keep them in our world is to abandon our core values, and some of us refuse to do that. The alternative is to love them from afar, and leave them in the Lord’s hands.

The next trauma has proven to be the one that has turned my world totally upside down. We found out a short time ago that my husband has Metastatic Prostate Cancer. I pray for the Lord to help the chemo, hormone treatment, and bone healing treatment heal my husband. My husband is even more amazing than his usual right now. You cannot imagine how whole and present he is in the middle of stage 4 cancer. If my love could heal, he would be the healthiest man on the planet.

It would seem that the trauma train has entered the station to stay! A very recent MRI done by my spine doctor, has rewarded me with a golden ticket back to my neurosurgeon. Time will tell if there is something proactive to do to quell my recently elevated pain (in spite of a ten plus year successful pain program), and other serious medical predicaments caused by a compromised nerve bundle. I walk with the Lord hour by hour, moment by moment, and I know His will be done. I must rest on that.

Just like Job, I pray for my faith to be refined and proven true through these tribulations life has handed me. Being human, I have many flaws. They say “the road to hell is paved with good intentions.” In looking over the 62 years I have been on this planet I know that my intentions were always good, even though they didn’t always bear fruit, and would sometimes bear the opposite of what I thought was happening at the time. Being human, I have cried my heart out over more recent events. I don’t know that tears do much good, except to clear the cobwebs out of my heart, mind, and soul. No matter the empty place my children and their families have left in my heart, I have come to realize that I have about 35 years of wonderful memories with each. I can rest on the love and influence I have had on each of them. Nothing can take all of those millions of good memories from me. It may be that the road they must travel just cannot include me right now.

Cancer. That has become such a devastating word in our language. After several months now, it would seem that nothing has changed, except for the loss of some of my husband’s hair. His hair is beautiful, and he has kept it blocked at the collar to please me. The loss of hair doesn’t seem to bother him for he loves a military cut anyway. There is a blessing in every little thing if we look for it. I have come past the devastation of the word, and have come to believe that he is beating the odds already, and will be with me for many more years.

As far as my recent medical developments, it just doesn’t seem to pack the punch it would have many years ago. I will do whatever is prudent to maintain the quality of life John and I have so far enjoyed. The bottom line is that whether John and I are here, or with the Lord is insignificant. Neither of us intends to leave the other one here by themselves if there is any way we can prevent that outcome. It would be ever so joyous if John and I traveled from this existence into the next within close proximity of the other. But, we do not pretend to know if that will be sooner or much later, and we are determined to get past all of this with faith and the grace of our Lord.

I imagine being 86 years old and seeing John across the dinner table with me. This is the stuff of faith in miracles. Neither of us forget for a minute that we found each other because we both prayed the same prayer to The Lord at the same time; and the Lord loves us so much He gave one to the other in answer to those prayers. John and I have so many good days in balance to about 3 or 4 bad ones over almost 20 years. The marital infidelities and traumas I experienced before John seem to have happened in a different lifetime, to a different woman. God looked down on me and smiled because even after being to hell and back several times, my faith in the institution of Christian marriage was not shaken. I have so many blessings, I cannot seem to count them all in a few minutes. Faith when all is fabulous really is easy; faith in the middle of a many faceted crap-storm is what we all pray we are capable of. We are absolutely being refined, and when all is said and done, I hope to be defined by my strength in my faith being refined and proven true.

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