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New goal

Ever heard of the Clipper Round the World? Me either until last summer when a gaming acquaintance of mine posted that she would be taking part in the race. Ten or twelve identical 68-foot racing yachts take off for a race around the world for the better part of a year.

The only sailing I've done was on a lake in Iowa (hot bed of sailing!) on a friend's catamaran. To say I loved it would be an understatement. I knew I would. We had a blast. I want to take lessons locally, but I'm in no shape to do so right now. The good news is that the Clipper race starts every odd year, so I can plan for this. I don't think I can get in shape and learn sailing well enough for blue water racing by next year, but I can shoot for the 2015-2016 race.

So that's the goal. And having set that, I know it's unlikely to happen. Participants pay to race ($70,000 USD) for the whole thing) and I would need money to pay the mortgage and for dog care for a year. That's the rub.

So #1, get in shape enough to take sailing lessons, #2, take lessons. #3 raise/save funds.

To reach #1 I've reconnected with a friend who will encourage me to be more active. I want to start walking and biking then I'll get into strength training. Healthy diet is something I've been working on, but haven't completely committed to. It will come.

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Life Circles

Sometimes the sign is a frigging billboard and even though you know you should ignore it, you don't. Re-finding those people you thought lost from your life can be exciting, joyous and fraught with peril. Closed hearts open. Learned brains try to shut them to keep them safe. You open doors anyway. You can't ignore billboards.

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16115 vs 16116

It just occurred to me as I was drying my hair that the date was near that signified that my life was longer than the one Bill had. I hurried to finish my hair so I could count the days and much to my chagrin, found that yesterday was the day our lives were the same in length and today puts me in the lead. I should have known, we were both born on Friday. Since he died on a Saturday, the date I caught him would be a Saturday as well.

I could have spent today working on cleaning Bill's house, but I find it much too depressing to think about doing it. In some ways I both resent and am grateful to Bill's cousin Diane who finds it a mission to clean up his life. When Doris told me of Diane's planned work weekends I told her that it was okay because I had gotten the embarrassing things out of his house.

There are still a few items I want such as his high school class ring (nothing else specifically comes to mind). But for the most part I have what I wanted from his house, the Dr. Who scarf Doris knitted for him, some of his books (I'm sure Diane is throwing away the rest), the TV and computer I bought him as gifts.

I still find I miss him most when I think about my future. I still haven't decided what I'm going to do without him. I still get sad most days and spend a few minutes crying. I'm glad I have the dogs to keep me moving. I can see why people die of broken hearts.

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Keeping on keeping on.

The dogs and I are settling into a routine. I've instituted an "air lock" system to keep them separated most of the time. They do frequently meet at the back door as the boys (Jett and Ben) and Fawn head in and out of the door. As they usually have something other than "attack" on their minds they have not proven to need separation there. Today however, they are driving me absolutely bonkers. I think they know the weather is changing (here comes the rain again) and wanted to enjoy outside one more minute before they would be captive inside.

I've had good days and bad days, rainy ones like most of last week and as this one is expected to be seem to be the worst. My birthday was hard, but friends and family did their best to keep me occupied and moving. I made the mistake of paying my cousin come over to help do some things around the house, but hey, I can fix those for free for the most part.

I've put up holiday lights but can't find my little tree. I'm sure it's at mom's. She may have co-opted it for a extra tree for her new backyard neighbors. If so, I'm not too worried about having a tree at all.

I'm still breathing...

The hardest part

I think the hardest part (right now) is that I can't see a future for myself. My former future was full of Bill: living in the same city, getting married, travel, making a life together. I have none of that any more. I have wonderful friends who are supportive but Bill was my rock. He anchored me when I was adrift and handed me balloons when I needed a lift.

He posted this on Facebook several months ago: Quote of the day: "Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's learning to dance in the rain." source unknown

Once I found this quote it began popping up everywhere. It's like a message from him that others are repeating, but I feel like I'm in a monsoon and I can't move because I might blow away.

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Things I want to remember about Bill

Meeting him at the bookstore for the first time. Cubs shirt, sandals and white socks. He was a complete nerd, but his touch electrified me.

His kindness, his fierceness, his humor that was so like mine.

Laughing in bed with him, late night talks, snuggling close when I was cold.

Tucking my leg under his before I went to sleep.

His hands, ohgod, his hands.

How much he loved Fawn once he got to know her. He said many times that she saved him.

His "quiet" moments.

After they had removed the NG and ET tubes, I could kiss him good night before I left the hospital. Any time you touched his lips or mouth he would close his mouth, so when I kissed him it was as if he kissed me back.

Our breakfast on a partly cloudy day out on the Whiting fishing pier.

The cold spring afternoon watching practice at the little league park.

The weekend at the hotel the first time we actually slept with each other (clothes on!).

Our long trips together: to Detroit for a wedding and then on to Milwaukee for his only live Cubs game despite being a life-long fan and the other to Iowa to visit Tan and Poppet.

How much I loved him and how good it felt to be able to let my guard down with someone. How he protected me when that guard was down.

Butt rubs after the drive up for visits.

Red foam clown noses for those times when a fight had turned silly.

His words. Writing greeting cards for me.

sticking "-ster" on the names of my dogs (Sun-ster, Jett-ster)

His lack of time management.

His lack of direction.. literally... He couldn't tell left from right, north from south.

Nitemirror

CEPT: Nitemirror is leaving the world. July 13, he had a massive stroke. He was lucky to make it to the hospital. I came up July 14 to be with him, hoping for something of a recovery, that he would still inhabit the body I've become familiar with. Unfortunately, pretty much all that's left is the body.

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Picked up my puppy early this afternoon. He's asleep near me as I type. It's storming outside and he's sleeping. I love it.

First thing we did when we got home was to go outside. Jett turned around and saw his reflection in the glass that covers the crawl space access and started barking at himself. So cute!!! I took the garbage out to the can at the alley and left him behind in the fenced part of the yard. He barked a few times, then he settled down and waited patiently for me to return. We've played on the floor a while, I placed him in his crate while I ate and he did settle into it as well. I think we are a good pair.

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