Monthly Archives: January 2013

1/23/13: The Checklist…Part 2

I realized recently that I have created this checklist in my head of things I need –feel compelled — to do. These are not things anyone else–least of all L–expects me to do. They are completely self-imposed. Still I find the ability to ‘check them off’ one by one incredibly therapeutic. Here are some examples…

  • when my brother and sister-in-law came to visit they stayed with me and for the three nights they were here we probably grew closer in those three days/nights than we’ve been in years. Each night we sat out on the balcony (this is Florida after all!) and talked until past midnight…it was a wonderful visit.
  • next I went with a group of friends to Sanibel Island off the Gulf Coast of Florida for a long weekend of shelling. The tides were supposed to be especially low during this time and that usually bodes well for finding treasures on the beach. We were up and out before daylight most mornings–flashlights in hand. But the truly special parts of that was shutting off the lights and just standing on the beach looking up at the sky–black with billions of stars. It was so inspiring, so indicative of our insignificance in the great universe. I spent hours walking the beaches where L and I planned out huge chunks of our life together–when he decided to go on his own with the Mom-and-Pop business that sustained us for years; when I went (kicking and screaming) to work for corporate America so we would have health insurance; when we planned my next book or our next trip…so many memories created on those beaches.
  • last weekend I traveled to visit friendsĀ  south of here who had for the last several years always had to come to us because L could not handle the traveling to their homes; it was strange driving by myself (thank goodness for GPS!!) and it’s still hard being a “single” when we are out to eat, but overall it was a good visit with wonderful friends who have played significant roles in our life.

The checklist also includes other things–finances, decisions about the future, my writing projects and deadlines…somehow it works for me to complete each project or item…I suspect it is a way of moving forward. And in the final analysis that is what this journey is really about…

1/1/13: The Checklist

And so I have made it through the holidays–quite peacefully actually. I feel L’s presence with me in almost everything I do and over the last week or so have only really had one slip/breakdown. As I sat here last night quietly bringing in the New Year it occurred to me that true to my nature I have unknowingly created a kind of checklist of things I need to take care of before I can focus on my own future. Let me be perfectly clear here–NO ONE has inferred that I need to do these things–they are strictly self-inflicted. But they are part of the path I feel I need to follow to lead me to my new future.

What’s on the checklist?

Little stuff–perhaps even stupid stuff like organizing not only my studio and condo back in Wisconsin but also this place that I rent here in Florida–this morning was spent reorganizing where the beach toys/chairs, etc. are stored to make them more accessible to those who stay here.

Must-do stuff like preparing the tax info for the accountant and praying I get it right!!

Good-for-me-in-spite-of-myself stuff like joining an exercise program that REQUIRES me to show up and do the work.

Friendship-stuff like making sure I travel to visit everyone here in Florida since for the last few years they always had to make the trip here to see us.

Get-it-done stuff like writing the books on my schedule.

Plan-ahead stuff like figuring out my schedule for the next several months.

Nothing huge–just normal life and I do get it that the list will likely continue to grow and will never truly be done. But the good news is that on this first day of 2013 I do feel as if I am moving forward–not that I don’t have my sad/bad/furious-at-the-unfairness-of-it-all times. But if L: taught me anything it was that this is the moment (not the hour or day–but the MOMENT) we get so use it well or lose it forever.

And in this moment it is a gloriously sunny warm day outside and I will not lose it…Happy New Year!!