A Porch of My Own

A Porch of My Own

Friday, December 19, 2014

Since You Went Away

Rickie is home to stay now but it's not the way we wanted, the way we planned, the way we spent years preparing for. He had a heart attack two days before Thanksgiving and he didn't survive. And just that quick, my world crumbled.

I know in my heart that the reason it hurts so much is because I loved him so much but I take little comfort in that.

Hayes Carll says " darlin', don't you cry tonight, the moon is full and the world is right. I've loved more than my share, I took the pain and called it fair."

But the world isn't right and I don't call it fair.

I try to take comfort in the fact that he was here, the place he loved, and that I was with him. That he was doing what he loved. That he had been having a great week with family. But I take little comfort in that.

I know one day I will find comfort in these things. I know from conversations we've had and from our shared outlook on life that we would both rather go quickly than to linger with the pain of a destroyed body or mind, as have some of those we loved. But we didn't want it yet. We wanted more time. More time together here at the ranch. More time with the kids. More time with the grandkids. Just a little more time.


Having been so often alone here, waiting on the day two months from now when Rickie would retire and join me, I can sometimes pretend I'm still waiting. That it's just not his weekend to come out and he'll be here soon.

Then at other times I can't breath and I just want to lie down and stay there until I can go wherever Rickie went.

But I can't. He left things undone that I need to do, things he wanted done out here that we hadn't finished. And there's the littlest ranch hand that needs me to teach him the things I can and to tell him about his Pampaw. He's going to have to depend on his parents, uncles, aunts, and cousins to help him learn the ways of wildlife, longhorns, canoeing, and ranch chores. He had already suffered the loss of his grandmother Miriam to cancer this year, too young at 57 to leave us. He needs everyone that is left. We all do.



A few days before "the moment of impact" (as my friend Deb, who has suffered an identical loss this year, referred to it) Rickie and I stood on the front porch watching the deer in the field. One of the hunters had made a shot and got his deer. All the other deer had scattered from where they were feeding but in a matter of minutes came back. I remarked on how fast they returned after the death of one of their own, how peaceful it looked. He said, yes, a hole is left but the others quickly circle around to fill it and life goes on.

We've been left with a hole that can't be filled but our family and friends quickly circled around us. Life goes on and we have to find that way to go on and do what we've been left to do. 


Life demands a price for happiness and that price is a broken heart when the road ends. I'm grateful for what Rickie and I shared; I do realize some people never have that. Maybe one day what we had won't be overshadowed by what we lost. 



Seems like to me the stars don't shine as bright..........


Since You Went Away by Kris Delmhorst



15 comments:

  1. I have always enjoyed reading your blog till today. so sorry for your loss,will keep you in my prayers.GOD BLESS and keep you.

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  2. Thank you, JB, for you kindness.

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  3. I am so sorry for your loss. You and your family are in my prayers. I cannot even imagine... I love the life you've created and thank you for sharing it.

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    1. Thank you, Teri, for thinking of us.

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  4. I am crying and don't know what to even begin to say.

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    1. Thank you, Marcia, for thinking of us.

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  5. Just as I was saying, "About time you posted", I get slapped in the face with reality and my self-centered greed comes to a screeching halt. I am so sorry for your loss and wish you God speed.

    Perhaps one night, you'll notice one of those stars is shining a little bit bigger and brighter than the rest.

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    1. Thank you, Mike, for your kind words and thoughts.

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  6. I have been quietly following your blog, but I must tell you how sorry I am for your loss. That little ranch hand is lucky to have a mentor like you... Not only can you, and will you teach him ranch skills, you are teaching him life skills by example. I know you might not feel it, but you are a strong woman.

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    1. Thank you, Wendy, for your kind words.

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  7. My heart is breaking for you Sue. My prayers are with you and your family, I'm so sorry.

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  8. Thank you, Judith, for your kindness.

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  9. Hello Sue
    I am new to your interesting site... My sister in law Norine shared the link with me. I am so sorry for the sudden loss of your husband. My husband is dying of cancer. We also were close to retirement and it was not planned that I would be spending it alone. You and I have many things in common. The love of words, photography, nature, living simply and watching Gods creation. I appreciate that you share your thoughts and feelings, it gives me hope that someday after he is gone, there will be a time when I will come out of the darkness and into the light of life again. God Bless...

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    1. Oh, Deb, I'm so sorry. It just seems so cruel that we lose our partner just when we are going to get to be together more and enjoy what I think would be some of the best times of our lives. I won't lie to you; it's very hard. On the days I can work outside in the sun it's easier. Then out of the blue I'll have 3 or 4 days where every little thing seems to make me cry and I despair of ever making it through. I'm trying to have some projects to keep me busy but the winter weather we've had lately doesn't let me do any of them. Those things you like will help you, I think. They do me. Getting outside, reading as an escape, and grandkids. A loving supportive family helps and it seems you have one also. But ultimately, it always comes back to you. Something a frind sent me who also lost her husband last year, sticks with me. It said something like "you will be sad but sorrow cannot be your core." But, at least for awhile, it will seem that it is. My niece gave me a beautiful leather journal and I write to Rickie in it, as if I am talking to him. It helps me, although I cry when I write. It gives me an outlet for some of my grief. I wil keep you and your husband in my heart. Be strong when you can't and lean on your loved ones when you can't.

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