Friday, March 01, 2013

Where I've Been


Strange times. Faces in trees. Sad moments. Great joy. This has been my last few weeks. 


I have traveled to Arizona for the memorial of a father, a brother-in-law, a professor, a good man, a quiet man with a mile wide smile. 


 He was an Iowa farm boy with a gift of brilliance; 'Doctor' to his university students who came to the church by the dozens, on a Saturday afternoon when there were so many other places they could have been.   I sat behind his daughters, who in this same church a decade ago mourned the loss of his wife, their Mother. And I sat beside my partner JB, saying goodbye to a man she had known as a teenager, heartbroken for herself and for her family. 


 It takes a long day to travel from New England to Arizona. So we stayed on after the memorial, a few days on the road, to a spa, to unwind, to catch our breath. Change is underfoot and it is both uncertain and predestined. It is too soon to speak in detail, maybe even too soon to even know what all the details are. But JB and I are in a whirlwind. If you know me and know some of what I refer to, please: Ssssh. Not yet. 
a new definition of on line.....

We headed for the Camel Back Inn in Scottsdale. Wow.






I average one massage a year. This time I had two. And a manicure and a pedicure. It was indulgence without caution. It was wonderful. 



 And chocolate fondue for lunch. In our spa robes. 


And mile high guacamole. 


So now I am back home. For the first time, today my Mother didn't recognize me. She was sure I am her sister. She is not the same as a month ago. I worry. I miss her.  But too: I have reason to be thankful. There are new possibilities. I am lucky to be able to chase them. My knees may knock but JB and I chase anyway. We're a good team like that. 

Life is hard. But not just.

love
kj

39 comments:

  1. It's a wonder you could even get from New England to Arizona and back, what with the frequent storms that your area has been getting. I'm so sorry you had to go under such sad circumstances.

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    1. Hi snow, planning around the weather has been tough. It's mostly worked out: AZ was supposed to be I characteristically cold but not so much that I wasn't 't able to lie by a pool and feel the sun on my face

      Love
      kj

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  2. Wonderful post, a celebration of his life now gone and your own still evolving! I really do wonder what is afoot. Your final six words say so much..... ♥

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    1. New chapters, Lydia. :-)

      Love
      kj

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  3. kj & JB Life and the living of it is a linear progression with turns dictated by need or desire. Nothing more or less, it is good that you travel not alone though and have some other mind to add impetus or caution to your course changes. Do not mourn the loss but rather grieve for the living that are left behind, and that only in its season.

    When my grand mother started calling me by her deceased brothers name, by becoming her brother for an hour or two, I actually was able to look at the memory she was living. It seems I have a lot of his quality or deficit as one would judge by her memory. I miss the old lady (105) but never forget who she was to me. Do the same kiddo, it will soothe the way forward.

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    1. Thanks, mark. I know you are wise and right. Not sure about a linear progression, though. Is time linear? I don't think so...

      Love!
      kj

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  4. you are in the whirlwind together - which is lovely.

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    1. Yeah Mim. But sometimes whirlwinds cause turbulence . We've growled at one another a bit :-)

      Love
      kj

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  5. Oh my, I am thinking of you and wishing the best for you.
    The wealthy owner of the travel agency where I used to work went to that same spa, even a jaded traveler such as herself really raved about it.

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    1. Hi Kay, it's a five star place! We didn't stay there but went to the spa there two days in a row; very classy and calm. I am not thinking about my upcoming credit card bill (yet) :-)

      Love
      kj

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  6. My thoughts are with you KJ. I am glad you walk with JB by your side and that you have one another. It is important to hold on tight when the seas of life start with the bigger waves. I hope your moms memory will right itself and if not, I hope you will be OK with being another person that she knows she loves. After all love is what matters and within that knowledge she is secure ... as are you. Much love, oh and can I just say that I WANT to eat that mountain of guacamole. Yum yum yum. Big huge hug xx Jos

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    1. Jos, come here, please. May I hug you tight?

      And yes, I will be aunt Betty when the time comes, and it may, when a return to sisters is the stronger bond. And I will be a good aunt Betty: I have her goofy laugh down already :-)

      Love
      kj

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    2. Ah KJ, yes hugs are some of the best medicine. Comfort and love ... what could be better? The bonds of family are so strong. I remember when I was mistaken for my mother by one of my great aunts in her final days. It felt odd, but also kind of OK too. The fundamentals are that our hearts know loved ones even if they muddle up who is who. Much love to you xx Jos

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  7. I got nothing. Take care woman.

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  8. Hi deb. here, take some of what I have :-) and take care too

    Love
    kj

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  9. Kj, I have been a grand-daughter and a first cousin I've never met. But she was always happy to see me, which made it all okay. Life is a strange little road, linear or not, and I am glad that you and JB can check to make sure the other's seatbelt is securely fastened.
    Much love to you both - xox

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    1. Aww Pam....I love who you are and I love what you say


      kj

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  10. i think another name for this post could be celebrating life. in everything, one way or another, you do kj. i love what jos wrote about your mom, yes love, and keep laughing.

    and amazing! we both have birds on a line and guacamole in our posts! and would i LOVE to be at that spa, esp after camping! what a great time you and jb had!

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    1. Lori sf, I can't believe our mutual birds and guacamole :-)

      The spa was awesome. Even its piped in music. Very zen

      xoxo
      kj

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  11. May your mom be in peace as she travels this end of life path.

    glad you had some beautiful times on your trip and that you are looking forward to some changes. Blessings, suki

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    1. Thanks suki. All of your wishes I wish for you too

      Love
      kj

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  12. I echo what everyone else has said. Your mom, the loss of a great friend and dad and brother in law, treating yourself to little indulgences to help digest what life is tossing your way. There's a lot going on right now missy, and it's mostly good. Mostly.

    And was Chase thrilled to have you both back home? I'm thinking he was :)

    sshhhhhhhh. Promise♥

    I'm glad you're both home safe.

    xoxo
    Love,
    Lo

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    1. Hi lo, chase is a strange guy. We're pretty sure he was quite glad we were home but he was not jubilant :-)

      My big news today is I have thoughts of spring!!!

      Love
      kj

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  13. thats a lot of birds on the line...life was never promised to be easy...it is easier when we face it together as you and jb are....keep being a good team and you will be fine....

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    1. Kj, I am so sorry for the loss of your brother-in law. As one who has suffered major losses in the last two years I can say I don't think it ever gets easier, but harder.
      I also know that grace and love abounds. We have to take the bad with the good, that is life. You are lucky you have JB. Facing life's hardships as a woman alone is harder, but doable. Friends and furbabies help.
      I am sorry about your mom, lots of love and hugs, xoxo

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    2. Brian,thank god for the people in my life. Xo

      Annie, I know you know. Saying goodbye is so sad. I am forever grateful for JB. Sometimes we scowl at eachother :-) but there is love

      Together strong, Annie xo
      Love
      kj

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  14. kj - i am sorry for your's and jb's loss. but i am so happy you were able to treat yourselves to the beauty of that part of the country while you were there. there is something about the desert southwest that calls to me.

    that's tough stuff about your mom not recognizing you. goddess bless as you seem to be heading into a new phase of life.

    xoxo
    p.s. treat yourself to more massages♡ i swear by them.

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    1. Amanda, I wonder why I don't have more massages . I tell myself it's about time and money. I do know better

      The southwest draws me in too. I look for water and I can't grasp so much open land --the gardener in me wants to plant! But there is an ancient serenity in the desert.

      How is the book coming?
      Love
      kj

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  15. Replies
    1. :-) cs. I'll email.

      Nothing earth shattering . More like a new map

      Love
      kj

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  16. I've been there...funerals, but also Camel Back Inn. Sooooooo long ago, as a teen, with my parents. I had forgotten all about it until I read the name here. And I am heading back to Arizona for work in two months. This will be my second trip there. I am so sorry for your loss and heartache. JB's too. Excited also for changes int he wind for you both :)

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    1. Hello Annie! Pretty classy, that Camel back :>)

      I see you've posted a new poem. I'll be by. I hope you get some time to relax in the AZ sun

      xoxo
      kj

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  17. KJ!! Oh my goodness girl those pictures are are simply DIVINEEEEEEEEEE!!! Oh my goodness I want to be there. It as awesome. Oh and thanks so much for slaying the annoying Anonymous hacker! I'm like seriously y'all?? Anyway, thanks so much for stopping by and leaving me some of your good cheer. Sending you hugs!!

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    1. You are most welcome, ms vee :-)

      Love
      kj

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  18. Oh wa wa wa...I missed my chance to see you. SCOTTSDALE and no call??? Oh, I supposed I should have given you my number.

    I am truly sorry about your Brother-in-law. And your Mom. Losses have surrounded me and tried to swallow me up the past 18 months; people, places, and lifestyles I loved too much. Yet, life IS still worth living, and living brilliantly.

    Hoping, wishing, praying, that the whirlwind is a good ride.

    **kisskiss** Deb

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    1. Deb, for sure I thought of you during my trip. I wondered if you were also at a memorial and I hoped your heart was surrounded by family and comfort

      Next time give me your phone number :-)
      And yes!

      Love
      kj

      Ps together strong, together strong xo

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  19. Growling is normal. when you stop growling....you probably stop loving as strongly.

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  20. You wise woman you

    Love
    kj

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  21. Oh dear sounds like you have had a rough time...... but I see all those beautiful pictures and I know you are the person who can deal with the whirlwind life trows at you and you will see wonder and beauty through your tears.
    So sorry to read about your mom not recognizing you , maybe it will be different later or maybe this is the start of something else....
    I am sorry you have to cop with loss at this point in your life.....
    And I read a lot of cryptic things, but I am sure I will know when the time is there......
    Sending you and JB lots of warm hugs and love dear!
    ♥M

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