Monday, April 1, 2013

Life v.3

Our marital home is sold.  Friends helped me purge, clean, pack and sell ... the penultimate night before completion, I sat on a box and spoke to Cliff ... and had a good long hard (and healing) cry.

I took pictures of his work ... the special extras he created (like the built-in bookcase, the architraving, the skylights, the meandering garden path .... these are just a few of my favourite things).  As well as his handwriting on bare plastered unfinished walls.  Plans interrupted.  Our dream.

I only kept an antique hexagonal small table and the dining table.  Our hardback books.  Treasured ornaments.  A Kent Peg Tile and two old chimney pots ... from the days when he ran across rooftops.  Cards we gave each other.  Sentimental precious things (worthless to others but priceless to me ... and am proud to report that all this stuff would fit in a trunk).  I have plans to display some of it, make it accessible to me should I wish to read through holiday memories, greeting cards etc.  There's no point boxing it up ... or else, why keep it?

Today marks Life v.3.  I complete on my new home and life in Spain .... in Andalucia.  Boxes await removal in storage.  Barney the wonder dog will join me 4 weeks after I move.  I miss my little companion immensely.

The little Spanish town's main road is a 5 minute walk from home - bars, restaurants, shops.

I can't decide whether to edit my blog (to hide some of the more "alarming to those peeps who have not lost a spouse" posts ... or shut it down entirely .... as I have to consider how a prospective client googling me may perceive me ... I've mentioned before that I reckon anyone who's not walked in my boots may think I'm insane ... whereas anyone widowed will see my ramblings as a sane reaction to an insane situation.

Guest bathroom


My street

Kitchen with brekkie bar

My en suite

Front porch with Cabrera Mountains in background

Partial picture of back terrace

I'll miss my soul mate till I take my last breath.  But ... enough is enough.  He'd tell me to pick myself up, brush myself down.  Build my strength and health back up.  Get my boobs and hips back ... LOL.  Enjoy my new home and work. Enjoy the simple things.  Smile.  Chill.  Look back with laughter and a smile.  Allow myself to cry whenever I need to.  Healing tears.  

I'm excited about decorating my new home with new IKEA furniture .... minimalist, adding colour and interest with our collection of loved ornaments and memories.  But it won't feel like home till my dog rocks up.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

an overdue update ...

Since my last post, Cliff's 4th grandchild was born (Rex Clifford), Christmas and New Year have passed us by, and I've emotionally "left" our home ...

I was honoured to be Jayde's birthing partner and the FIRST PERSON IN THE WORLD to hold Rex Clifford.  He's perfect.  We managed not to cry (or pass out) but found ourselves blinking at a rate of a million blinks per minute to disperse any tears bubbling at our tear ducts.  And you can almost see my chin wobbling in one of the photos.  It was fun having sleepovers with Amber (Cliff's first grandchild) for the two nights that Jayde was in hospital ... and we shared looking after Scarlett.

This magical experience was unfortunately followed by sad news.  One of my school friends died of sleep apnea whilst staying in a hotel LA, for a job interview.  We were all shocked and very upset as the news spread.  Eerily, he'd emailed me the week before to tell me how much he loved me.  After the tears, I found myself grateful to have had this gentle giant of a man as one of my friends ... and to have spent time with him a couple of years previously, at a school reunion.

And ... as the 4th Christmas/New Year approached ... I was totally amazed to find myself genuinely looking forward to the holidays again.  Excited even.  We had a quiet yet lovely time together as a family.  My big sister's cottage was made for Christmas ... the quintessential English country cottage with wood burning fire, beams and doors you (and even I ... at a height of 5' 2.5") have to bend down to fit through.

A real tree ... gifts put underneath on Xmas Eve, candles lit ... Xmas stockings ... and my sister spoiled us all with tree presents and gifts for the table too.

I lit a candle for Cliff of course.  Didn't make a big deal about it.  Just quiet.

The stars on Christmas night practically filled the sky and were so bright.  "Hello, Baba," I smiled, before blowing him a kiss skyward.  There were some silent tears that escaped a few times (usually in the shower, or outside whilst having a Marlboro Lite) but none of the big dramatic sobbing episodes that came with the first three years without my Baba.

After 2 weeks with my sister and coming home without Barney (he remains in a high class kennels in Suffolk so that packing up the house is easier ... he is a Houdini and clearing out stuff, packing it, giving it away means the front door will be open more often than not) was not easy.  I had a sobbing episodes and felt myself spiralling downwards rapidly.  So ... I got in the car and found myself at my friend's house.  I cried and asked if I could stay a couple of nights and she suggested I stay with her till I leave for Spain.  And I am.  I've left our home in every sense except for physically emptying it.  For now all focus remains on the paperwork to ensure that the sale completes quickly.  My latest ETA is 28th February ... hurrah!

Onwards to my new life (Life v.3) in Spain with Barney ... it's a busy time but I have help packing ... and more importantly, after spending a day there, I know I can return to my temporary "post restante" address by the coast ... appropriately spending my last days in the UK in the place where his invisible footprints remain.