A world of grey

Clouds
After someone we love dies we don’t see colour for a long time. I remember being on chat for the twinless group and telling them that I painted my room bright yellow. I told them “I live in a world of grey I don’t want my room to be too”. One guy thought that was so sad but it’s true. I lost two very important people in my life. When Janet died joy went out of my life for a long time.
When my Mom died I came home and sat in a dark room. It hurt to look at the sun. I was so numb I didn’t even know what to do. I had never felt more alone in my entire life.
A friend of Moms from church would use the term there is light at the end of the tunnel. When I moved I felt excitement. It was fun picking out furniture, seeing how excited other people were for me. But at the same time it’s only ten months since Mom died. On Sunday it will be seven years since my Dad died. I asked a friend if she could take me to the cemetery. I just feel the need to go.
Even going to conference no one can really give me answers because I don’t know of anyone there who has lost their entire family. But they will listen and that’s important. I need that love and support from fellow twins.

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Tourist daily prompt

Tourist
Two weeks tomorrow I will be heading to Detroit. I’m pretty well organized except for toiletries which need to be purchased. Make sure all my electronics are charged and bring charger for iPad.
A twin friend is coming to stay with me for a couple of days. Going to conference is emotionally draining (and I’m sure will be even more so for me) so we will just hang out the first day. I was hoping we would have time to do afternoon tea at Eldon House. We are going to go to the inn for dinner as I have told her a lot about it. I’m hoping someday she can stay longer and see the neighbourhoods that are important to me.
My city isn’t a touristy place but in the summer we have more visitors because of the festivals. My cousin went to home county folk festival. When a friend of mine got married she took her fiancĂ© to the balloon festival.
A friend of mine from public school is coming home for Christmas. She is looking forward to going to Victoria Park to see the lights. She lives in Australia and misses the seasons. It will be different seeing it from her eyes. The excitement of seeing something you miss.
I will be hosting both of them. I will be their tour guide.

Food

Water
Last night I was watching a program on tvo called The Agenda. My Dad used to watch it. The segment was titled The Lost Art of Meals. They were talking about the socializing of eating, nutritional value etc. One woman on the panel is a dietician who works at Wellspring. She mentioned how we tend to ear slower if we are eating with somone else. I find that. I have to remind myself to slow down when I eat. The social aspect made me sad because I thought not everyone has someone to eat with and it reinforces the fact that we don’t.
The segment was only half an hour but there are so many facets to it. Convenience food. Cooking for one and for me shopping for one. This show is taped in Toronto and many people live downtown and don’t have a car. My neighbour has a shopping cart but I’ve realized that I almost have to go twice a week otherwise I can barely carry all my groceries in. I like going to the grocery store but I realize for the convenience it will probably be easier just to get a weekly shop by my grocery person.
When I went with my Mom she would drop me off to get a haircut (which I started with today) and she would go around and shop. I would be finished and help her load them in the car. Of course we would stop for a coffee and donut before heading home.

The side door

The Story Behind a Door
Fence
Growing up we knew there was a difference between the side door and the front door. Side door was for everyday use and the front door was for company. Friends knew we used the side door. My friends daughter came for the first time with her at Christmas and she said “aren’t we going in the front door?” Her sister who had been before said “no, they don’t use it”.
Going to my Dads eldest sisters house it was thr same. If we all went for a family dinner we went in the front door but if it was just us we used the side. It’s less formal. But I was thinking the other night about this prompt and my two uncles only had the front door. My Dads youngest brother had a door from the garage but obviously he wouldn’t take guests through there. Unlike the rest of Dads siblings we didn’t have a separate living room and family room. I always prefer the family room or den. I felt like I had to sit straighter in the “parlour”.
When we were little there was a door separating the dining room and living room. I don’t know why and we got rid of it quickly. We had a sliding door separating the front hall from kitchen. There were many times where that came in handy hiding dirty pots and pans!
When we turned over our keys my brother asked why I didn’t have a key to the front door. I didn’t need one. If we used the front door I was always with Mom.
I’m getting used to the freedom of more doors open to me.

I’m grateful for…

Prophecy
1. A perfect summer day. Somedays are just right.
2. The sound of laughter in the park
3. Time. It was so nice to be able to have time to to go to market today
4. The sweet taste of strawberries
5. friends to share birthday with
6. Two nice people to share cake with
7. Friends who are proud of me

I’m grateful that even in so much loss I can still see the joy.

Market day

Prophecy
I have lived in my apartment since the first of April but this is the first weekend that I was able to go to the market. Some weekends I had free but it was either too hot or raining. I went early so I could get back before 10 because the elevator was in use for someone moving in. I didn’t buy as much as I thought I would so i could’ve taken the stairs.
I walked past Harris park and there was something going on there this morning. A school event I think. They hold an event there for Canada Day and I hope it’s not too hot to go.
The market is open 7 days a week but Thursday and Saturday they have outdoor market. I bought some strawberries. She even gave me one to try. There is nothing like the first taste of strawberries in the season. Plus it’s such a short season. Bought a caramelized onion tart for lunch. A loaf of crust bread as my Dad would call it and some meat (which I had to go inside for). Steak with lots of mushrooms, baked potato and strawberries for dessert is on the menu tonight. YUM
I loved the convenience of this neighbourhood!

Partners photo challenge

Partners
image
This is the best picture of my grandparents and it’s probably the last one. That was my grandmas favourite outfit.
My grandparents were partners in every sense of the word although my grandfather used to say she was more boss than he was. He was like my Dad that he wouldn’t come up with the idea but would eventually come around to it. In their den they had a sofabed and a lazy boy but they would sit side by side in the couch unless Grandma was doing some sewing. They never fought…not even a disagreement which I kind of thought was unnatural. I loved Janet but even we argued. When she died he was lost without her. He died of cancer but my Mom said he really died of a broken heart. We couldn’t be sad that he was gone because they were reunited.

When we went to sign the papers to sell the house on one of the many forms we had to sign they had to say that Mom was not a spouse at the time of her death. I know that it’s all legal wording but I sat there thinking I would rather it say his widow. Til death do us part meant something to them. I often wonder about people my age who don’t have the piece of paper. Even when Dad died Mom had to produce their marriage certificate and he died one month shy of 40 years together.

Janet was my partner. At the internment my Mom had my Dad, my brother had his girlfriend and I had a friend who stood beside me. She was my coffee, shopping and walking buddy. I miss that companionship.

In awe of myself

Awe
Yesterday after we signed the papers it is “over”. People that really understand know it’s not really over its just a chapter that is over. My superintendent said now your mind can settle, you no longer have the responsibilities. This morning is catch up day…doing laundry and tidying.
I am in awe that I cleaned out a 4 bedroom home completely on my own. I did most of the banking…not perfectly but I had help from financial planner. There were things that I learned as I went along. I have not come across anyone that has done this all on their own.
I found an apartment and moved. I had a lot of help from friends. I know that Mom helped because I was getting very frustrated looking and finding places that were quite expensive for the size of the apartment. I have mentioned how friendly the superintendents are. One place I went to they have a waiting list so they don’t have to treat you nicely because someone is waiting in the wings.
I am still standing. Last night I went to bed early because I was emotionally wiped. Very numb too.
I have got everything in preparation to go to conference. Transportation and hotel booked. Had alittle blip with membership but it was fixed. Can’t believe its so close. I had a to do list everyday for a long time…not anymore.
I DID IT

Empty or vacant

Empty
Went to sign the papers at the lawyers office this morning. It was all done in less than half an hour. Handed over my keys and the lawyer says “the house is vacant right”. The house is empty. It just felt so final.
The office was close enough to where I live that I walked home. I got an iced coffee and went and sat in the park to think. I felt like crying but the tears wouldn’t come. There is a feeling of emptiness that the it’s all over. People think I must be relieved and that isn’t the word I would use. There is relief that I don’t have the responsibility anymore but everything that Dad and Mom worked hard for is all gone. The money from the sale will go into estate account divided and we are done. Selling the family home really means I have no family anymore.
It’s going to take time to process. There is a hole where my family was. They are with me always but I miss their physical presence. There is an emptiness.

Companions

Companion
Today was a bittersweet day. Went to the house to do a final walk through. make sure there wasn’t anything I left. My neighbour came to pick me up at 11:30 and we went to take fabric samples back and then went to coffee shop for lunch. She has been such a help I couldn’t have done this without her.
When I got back to apartment checked for mail and found a card from her which she dropped off on Sunday and a card from my superintendents because they let her in. That is so sweet. They really do feel like family.
In the afternoon I had a much needed nap! Shower and change and I was ready to go out for dinner at 5 with my friends. We ended up going to my birthday place and sat out in the courtyard. It was lovely listening to the water in the fountain, watching the fish swim in the pond. We even had dessert and the waitress put a candle in mine.
I kind of wish I could have a birthday everyday. It’s a day where I am surrounded by love. I get tons of wishes on my facebook wall and emails. On days where I feel alone I can bottle this feeling.
All I can say is thank you.