Wednesday, November 3, 2010
On October 23, 2010, I was witness to a marvelous event...the marriage of Melissa Boyd and Stephen Webb. Melissa is a college friend of my daughter, Maggie, and I met Stephen several years later when the two started dating. These two young people have been through alot in their lives, individually and separately. There have been tragedies, disappointments, surprises and triumphs for both of them. However, no matter what has happened to them, they have retained their joyous and hopeful outlook on life. They are parents to a marvelous 2 year old named Cooper and they have taken the duties of parenthood in stride with confidence and great maturity. The wedding was so "them"! It was casual, warm, loving and happy. I was expecting to feel very emotional during the ceremony, remembering Steve and all of the emotional trauma that I have been through in the last 5 years, but I was not expecting such a joyous emtional high. It has been a little over 3 years since Steve died and I have been through some very low periods during that time. Going to his 40th high school reunion last summer and listening to his high school friends talk about him with love and admiration really took me to a deep valley of sadness. GW's college graduation was very painful because Steve would have been so proud to see that both of his children earned the college degree that he never did. Just going to the Colquitt County football games on Friday nights brings me down. Remembering how much he loved playing football and being in a huge crowd of people who all seem to be in "couples" has a devasting effect on my psyche. So attending the wedding of two people who are like my children...well, I was expecting the worst...a depression that would send me to that black hole of a feeling from which it is very hard to escape by yourself. As I walked the length of the pier to the dock where the ceremony would take place, I had a long time to think about what was going to happen. I could feel my heart in my throat and was afraid that I might break down right in the middle of the ceremony. But to my surprise, something wonderful happened. When I saw the joy and love on the faces of Melissa and Stephen and heard the excitement in their voices at the prospect of sharing a deep committment for the rest of their lives, I could only think about all of the happiness that Steve and I had shared in our lifetime together. I realized that we had promised to love, honor and cherish each other until "death do us part"...not until we were both 90 years old. Our life together had been cut short and for the past 3 years I have felt cheated because Steve died before I was ready for him to die. We had so much more that we wanted to do together...plans that we had dreamed of for 29 years of marriage. But we had 29 glorious years as man and wife, lovers and best friends and we loved each other more on the day he died than we did when we said our vows on May 20, 1978. I realized what a wonderful gift we had been given and happiness flooded my soul instead of depression and anger. I guess that means that I am making progress, at least, I hope it does. And to Melissa and Stephen, I can only say "Thank You" for including me in such a momentous moment and showing me what true happiness means. I wish you all the best that life has to offer. I hope that life still has good things for me to experience also, not the least of which is true love.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
I guess I have left you hanging long enough wondering what in the world does the title of this blog mean. In fact, I have probably left you hanging for far too long. I had intended to get back to blogging in just a few days, but I did not count on 2 employees at the library getting sick, conflicts between Windows 7 and several State of Georgia agency websites, open enrollment for the employee health care plan and the library's annual report. Believe me, all those obstacles have not been overcome, but I decided to post a short blog before everyone (including me) loses interest. So...back to the title of the blog. Back in the late 1980's, a singer/songwriter named Mary Chapin Carpenter hit the charts with several very catchy songs. Billed as a country singer, but sounding more like a folk singer, Carpenter was named the 1992 & 1993 Female Vocalist of the Year by the Country Music Association. Her biggest hits included "Shut up & Kiss Me", "Passionate Kisses", "I Feel Lucky", "Down at the Twist & Shout", and the song from which the name of my blog came, "The Bug". This song is about the ups and downs we encounter in life. Sometimes we are on top of the world and then we fall to the depths of the valley. As Mary Chapin Carpenter puts it "...sometimes you're the windshield and sometimes you're the bug." Since my life has taken lots of unexpected twists and turns in the last five years, I thought that this philosophy would be a great title for my blog. However, not to leave you with gloom and doom, here are the rest of the lyrics:
"You gotta know happy - you gotta know glad
Cause you're gonna know lonely and you're gonna know sad.
One day you got the glory and then you got none
One day you're a diamond and then you're a stone
Everything can change in the blink of an eye
So let the good times roll before we say goodbye."
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
So...what ever possessed me to start writing a blog? Don't I have enough to do already without adding one more thing? Well, apparently not because here I am. The Librarian in me loves the written word. The artist in me loves the creative part of the writing process. The dreamer in me hopes that by sharing my thoughts, I will grow as a person. The last five years of my life have been...what's the right word...tumultuous, life-changing, traumatic, eye-opening, overwhelming, unexpected, and challenging. Many more words come to mind, but most of them are unprintable. Starting with my near-death experience in an automobile accident in 2005, through Steve's diagnosis of lung cancer and his eventual death in 2007, and right up to my life today, my life has taken turns that I never could have imagined. The inner strength that I thought I possessed simply evaporated when Steve died. Now I am trying to rebuild my life and for some reason, on a Tuesday afternoon in late September, writing a blog seemed like a good way to start. I have been reading the Brys family's blog since they moved to Switzerland last fall. Jamie is my daughter's sister-in-law. Her insights on raising two children have been heartwarming and her tales of traveling in Europe are enlightening. This afternoon, I received a message from my daughter, Maggie, telling me that she had started a blog. Reading her thoughts and observations just made me feel good. So, I thought that I might give it a try. What am I going to say in my blog? I have no earthly idea! I will probably ramble alot because I am still trying to "find" myself after everything that has happened in the last 5 years. I hope to come to a new understanding of what it means to live and grow through adversity. I will probably throw in a few interesting and entertaining stories about the happenings of a day in the life of a librarian. That part will always be entertaining, because you never know what will happen at the public library where I work. I hope this journey takes me from darkness to light, from despair to hope and makes us both smile along the way!