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Mary I love Bill's poem and it brings his soul closer. I feel I know him from knowing you. I need to sort out all this advice on meditation. I m placing a reminder on the calendar in my ipad to ensure I do at least a little meditation daily.

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I really like Bill's poems, Mary. Thank you for yet another one. Is there a book of poetry down the line someday! As Jan said, I too feel as though I know Bill through your eyes. Thank you. Anne

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Not sure about the book of poetry, Anne. So many are so personal...maybe...I have to go through all of them and pull out the ones I feel he and I would be comfortable sharing. I have a lot of them and started to type them up last year...many are on loose pages he enclosed in cards, others are in his book (hand written), some digital. Huge project and painful and joyful as each one has a bucket of memories attached which then triggers more memories and then tears...slow going :)

Glad you like them. He was such a treasure...sometimes I am overwhelmed that he chose me and if he were here, he would say he was overwhelmed that i chose him. I frankly do not think we chose each other...we have been together for eons.

Mary

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Glad you like them. He was such a treasure...sometimes I am overwhelmed that he chose me and if he were here, he would say he was overwhelmed that i chose him. I frankly do not think we chose each other...we have been together for eons. Mary

Dear Mary,

The richness and depth of your love with Bill shines through your sharing posts.

Doug and I figured out we did not chose each other (his first letter to me was addressed to Sir: because of my name) and yes, we both had the same reaction to loving each other—that we had found each other again. We talked about it quite a bit, because of the uncanny overlaps in our lives.

You and Bill had a wonderful love, and I am thankful that you are able to share so much here. It is a comfort to be able to smile and nod my head and say, "Yes, see? Others had it too, and can express it."

Doug wrote love letters when we were separated on business, and often left little notes around the house for me, many hidden in places where I am still finding them. Once he had heard the final diagnosis, and had given up the thought of more chemo after three years or growing weaker and weaker, he set about putting everything in order, and I think that is when he began to leave the last set of notes. Some are reminders of things to do. Some are notes for the Trustees. Most are signed sketches, some with notes, mostly sketches of birds (he was an ornithologist by profession and also an artist) and lots of little notes, many just saying "I love You" or "I am still Here." Although I shed tears of loneliness and gratitude when I find the notes, they are truly a comfort. And he was very good at hiding things in places he knew I would eventually be looking. But, Doug was no poet, although a great writer and storyteller. I love that you have Bill's poems to cherish and read. Songs from his heart to yours. How wonderful.

I know Bill is still "Here" with you as well. Thank you for your continuing outpouring of love and thoughtfulness to us all here.

Much Love and *<twinkles>*

fae

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My George was a gifted writer...his college professor always said he should write but he never did professionally, just privately. He was also a hopeless romantic. I had two 5" notebooks full of his letters but I got rid of them. My little sister didn't see how I could do that and I told her it was because they were intended for my eyes only, they were private, he told everything about his life in them, his thoughts, feelings, everything. I didn't want other eyes to see what was intended for me only, should I pass away. They are all imbedded in my heart and mind. I have questioned since if I did the right thing, but I think that I did. I did keep the cards and little notes that he left laying around here...he used to put post-it notes up in places for me to find...the utility room cupboard, my closet, the medicine cabinet, etc. He loved hiding them as surprises for me to find. I still have them up as I never removed any of them.

Mary, thank you for sharing with us. Yours and Bill's relationship was and is very special...death cannot destroy it. We who are her on this site are the ones that have been so blessed to have had our soul mate and best friend to share in life with.

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I have questioned since if I did the right thing, but I think that I did.

Mary, thank you for sharing with us. Yours and Bill's relationship was and is very special...death cannot destroy it. We who are her on this site are the ones that have been so blessed to have had our soul mate and best friend to share in life with.

Kay, I feel that way about some of Bill's poems so have made arrangements with a friend, trusted, that when I die (she is younger so I assume she will outlive me) she has a house key and knows where I will leave them along with a flash drive. She is to take it all and burn them and destroy my hard drive. My family knows this. Someday, I may change my mind but that day is not in the near future. I have not even cleaned his closet out yet. I agree, Kay, we have been blessed. Many never have been.

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I do know that Bill is with me. I treasure that reality. Thank you so much, Mary

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http://www.sheknows.com/health-and-wellness/articles/982311/learn-how-to-meditate

Good piece on TM (Transcendental Meditation) the most researched form of meditation. Bill and I took the class years ago and found it quite helpful though not gigantically different than what we were already doing. Bottom line: a practice of daily meditation can assist those who grieve at many levels-physical, spiritual and emotional. This piece addresses some of those.

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Thanks, Mary. I liked Jeanne Bell's comments: '...the mind's natural tendency that is always lively within everyone;' and, 'allow our minds to settle inward...' To me it is all about being in the present, letting thoughts come and then gently brush them away as we try to connect with our inner selves. TM to me really means just be in the moment. Connect with what's deep inside of me. Watch a sunset and don't talk about it. Listen to the rain and don't take pictures of it raining.

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I just spent two hours working on the meditation piece. Now I will get breakfast. Choosing the links I want to use is a challenge...trying not to overload people. I agree...call it Mindfulness, TM, meditation or whatever...it comes down to stillness in the here and now.

Mary

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Larry left me notes also, hidden in secret places, sometimes on the nightstand so when I woke I would be greeted by his words. A poet, no, but a hopeless romantic. Many are still on the refrigerator where he left them. I will share this, hospice didn't make it here before he died but I did have a hospice counselor who was sent out to me for a while. She actually was the only one who was around in the beginning and I sobbed with her, no one else saw those heavy tears. One day we were in the kitchen and she saw his letters on the frig. and asked is she could read them. I said of course, I loved sharing him. She began crying and said to me"do you know how lucky you are?" Yes, I was very very lucky to have shared my life with him. Funny, a complete stranger "got it" where family and friends have never remarked all these years.

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I totally understand that. My friends did not get it. My family did not get it for sure. Complete strangers who became friends got it. People here, for example. We were lucky and blessed to have a relationship that many long for. I guess that makes it a bit harder for others to get...they have no clue what it is like to be one soul in two bodies. I am so happy that Hospice counselor was there for you. Mary

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Thank you both for sharing here your stories of love notes left, and no one in the family understanding it at all.

No one "got it" about the notes Doug left, or that he had actually created two books out of our correspondence over the years. Two books! I don't know what I will do with them yet, and I have not printed them out from his desk Mac. They are both formatted and ready to print, and it looks as though there are some commentaries by him as well. He always had three computers going on different levels of disciplines and writing. I have not explored them yet, although he told me to go through them before I erased them. He also left memory sticks for me, about 2 dozen.

I don't think my hospice counselor got it, although she was very kind. But my grief counselor got it, and I am delighted that many people here get it.

Thank you both for sharing your notes about the notes. :) It is so comforting to find others who understand how precious and wonderful it is to have this love with another person. Thank you.

*<twinkles>*

fae

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Deborah,

That's how George was. I look around and I see things he bought for me, notes he wrote me, they're everywhere. He knew I loved leaves and dragonflies so if he saw them, anywhere, he'd buy them for me, jewelry, art, a rubber stamp, anything he knew I'd love. He lived for me, and I for him. I am lucky that my sisters and grown kids knew how much we loved each other. No one, though, absolutely no one can begin to understand the huge empty hole they leave, unless they've been through it too.

My grief counselor definitely didn't get it, he started talking about how if his wife died, he'd take off his ring and move on, this was when it was still very fresh, the first month. I don't think he should have been in practice.

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Here is a lovely meditation led by Roshi Joan Halifax (guest on On Being on public radio). She leads this audience through a ten minute meditation on grief:

http://www.onbeing.org/blog/encountering-grief-guided-meditation/4983

May you have a peace filled moment today

Mary

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Oh Mary, I love her. She is one of the few people I can listen to and stay in quietness. Thank you for sharing this. I have listened to it often. She has also appeared with Brother David Steindl Rast who has done many videos on meditation. He has the video that I posted somewhere on this site called 'A Good Day' - I'm trying to bring it up but can't seem to find the correct link - I'll try this one http://www.gratefuln...-good-day.htm It should work. I know Marty re-posted it on one of her sites but I can't remember just where it is right now. A very good way to start my day. Anne

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I came across this today on Facebook and believe it applies to our grief. I would like to add that "looking at it, accepting its existence, and releasing it for healing " has to include feeling the pain and holding someone's hand along the way.

Marianne Williamson

Healing works through a kind of detox: things have got to come up in order to be released. That is true of our personal issues, and also our collective issues. We can't just push the darkness down, pour pink paint over it and then pretend it's not there. We have to look at it, accept that it exists and then release it for healing.

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Dear Mary,

Thank you for the Marianne Williamson link.

I loved the "pour pink paint over it" phrase, because that is what I was doing, often. Thank you for pointing out that we must look at it, accept it, and figure out how to release it for the healing. Now that I am understanding that, I find myself sitting, crying, and actually whimpering as I release all the hurt and pain. Thank you.

And it is wonderful to have this place to hold hands.

Thank you.

*<twinkles>*

fae

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...and patience in the process....one of my biggest challenges but slowly mastering it to a large degree. You are welcome. I am doing a lot of reading and listening to Joan Halifax these days. I will post a couple later.

Peace to your heart

Mary

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Yes, a lot of people thing the bereaved are doing better than they are because the pink paint masks it. Remember there was someone on here that lost his GF and it was YEARS later before he fully grieved? The grief work is always ready and waiting when at last we tackle it, it doesn't magically disappear just because time passes.

Edited by MartyT
Link inserted ♥

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http://marc.ucla.edu/body.cfm?id=22

Some helpful guided meditations from UCLA...a few minutes of meditations gives your mind/body a rest and relaxes you.

Peaceful moments today,

Mary

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Thank you, Marty! You must have one terrific memory!

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I got side tracked again in January and February...I lose my center, myself, so easily...this is so new for me since Bill died. But alas, I have once again found my way back to me and when I do...the tears flow....a good reason to get lost in other things and other people and other busyness. I have never felt so fragile in terms of losing my focus, myself, my center. But here I am again. It seems to get easier to get back but still takes a while.

When I have trouble with focus I use CDs to do my meditation. Today I used Tara Brach's Mindfulness Meditation, a double CD set and very helpful if you are having trouble concentrating. She says the word "busy" in Chinese is close to the meaning: "heart killing". I recommend her CD set. Here are samples of her meditations:

http://www.tarabrach.com/audioarchives-guided-meditations.html

By the way, my friend Cathy contacted me this morning...her blood work is all clear and she is free from doctors for 3 months. Of course, deep down, we both wonder if this is over but today she (and I) are celebrating this news. Now, if you think I am a tough one to hold down and rest, keeping her from overdoing will be a HUGE job...that is why we have a team of 5 :) . I am hoping she will come up for several days...to regroup and just be. It is quiet here and she can journal, sit by the fire, knit, whatever as we also just share. I will see her next week when I go to Chicago to see my eye doc and spend the evening/night at her home. I know, it is a long trip (5 hour drive) to see an eye doc but I have 5 serious eye dx that this MD is on top of. I do not worry about it. I just do what I do.

Peace,

Mary

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Tara Brach

posted this poem (below) on her Facebook page today. It seems relevant to...my saying yes when I mean no....to people, to events, to everything/everyone but me. I AM back now and when I return to my center I look back and see where i have been....even when I believe otherwise at the time. I am just so used to being on the go...I do not know too often (but less so now) when I am on the go....it all seems so normal. I know it is fear driven. Very frustrating...but I am getting closer to realizing it at the time...I have to give myself credit for all the wins these past two months...all the times I said no....which are too numerous to count..Not that I am so popular but that I can be at coffee with someone and two people come along and inform us of some event and we are off and running.I am winning slowly but surely with an emphasis on slowly. There IS progress. This is not just about me...though I claim 100% responsibility...but I live in a village where there is a lot going on and where people try to attend in order to support their neighbors...but in the end...this is all mine...the village stuff just fuels my struggle to balance my life...to live with me. Of course at the bottom of it all is being alone...I love my solitude believe me but there is a being alone beyond that love of solitude...the existential aloneness...that is THE struggle since Bill died. And right now the permanency of Bill's death, is out of the blue, hitting me hard. It all fits...one big challenge. Rambling, I am.... :)

Spacious

Dear you,

you who always have

so many things to do

so many places to be

your mind spinning like

fan blades at high speed

each moment always a blur

because you’re never still

I know you’re tired

I also know it’s not your fault

The constant brain-buzz is like

a swarm of bees threatening

to sting if you close your eyes

You’ve forgotten something again

You need to prepare for that or else

You should have done that differently

What if you closed your eyes?

Would the world fall

apart without you?

Or would your mind

become the open sky

flock of thoughts

flying across the sunrise

as you just watched and smiled

c. Kaveri Patel

photo - Shell Fischer

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