Monday, October 15, 2007

Weekend Recap

Saturday was the Texas Hold'Em benefit for Leonard. My father, myself, my brother in law and our dearest friends, Patty and Luke, drove out together. When we arrived I found that my cousin (Leonard's cousin, but I call his cousins family is small) Rob was there and also Leonard's childhood friend Al, and Jerry, one of my husband's favorite coworker/friends from years back. Also there, that I knew, were a former golf partner (and good friend) and about 4 guys from his work, and 6 from his golf league. The rest of the group were die hard poker players I guess. I had thought it was put together by a friend of his from work, but it was put together by a man who had coordinated several of the tournaments that Leonard had gone to over the years. He was so stunned and saddened, that he wanted to do something... so he did this. It brought me to tears that this man I really did not know at all had done this for my husband. Again, his impact greater than he ever would have believed. I spent the first 15 minutes outside, trying to collect my thoughts and banish the tears for the evening.

My family members/friends are not card sharks...they're not even minnows...or perhaps they are because they were the real sharks within 45 minutes. But I think they had fun...only I kept waiting for my husband to walk through the door.

I handed out a bracelet to each person there, telling them the story behind it, and I was so happy to see each person putting one on. (Laurie I got your email and will send you one, Rachel, I think I have your other email address still, or email me your address and I will send one out, Shari, I didn't get your email :( so if you send an email with your address, I will zip it right out to you). I have gotten a lot of peace, handing them out. It helps me to think that he won't be forgotten. I still worry so much, that he will be forgotten. We were home by 11:30, so it wasn't too tiring and I got a chance to speak with everyone there...and learned so many more stories of my husband, the golfer, the poker player , the coworker, and the friend. It was a good, if more than bittersweet time... I again found myself aching for his smile, the sight of him...sitting at the table, cards in hand. But that will never be.

Saturday was a day that I had looked forward to since July...since before... A couple of friends (one all the way from England who has been a dear and much loved friend for years) that I had met on a message board I participated on, came for a visit. It was so good to see them. It was so good to forget about the reality of my situation for hours and take a visit down to Detroit. To show them what is still good and beautiful about this often trashed (and sometimes with good reason) city. I took them for a ride on what passes for "public transportation" in this city that could use a subway system. It is called the "people mover" and it basically moves people (I bet you wouldn't have guessed that) from various parking lots to various places (read: casinos) to spend their money. We stopped in Greektown and had a delicious lunch...and I was able to talk to two people, that I have cared about through word, in actual real time. I could hug them, and look into their faces, and know that they cared. We also took a drive (on the way down to Detroit) along Jefferson Avenue-from the starting point (by my house)through where the fabulously wealthy (and/or amazingly stupid with their money) live. Down past where the Fords, and the Dodge brothers used to play. And the we hit Alter. Alter is the dividing street between the haves and the have less than nots. There used to be an actual wall along Alter that the rich would not have to realize that they lived right next door to the poor. It is really very sad.

After a wonderful afternoon we came back to the house for coffee and tea, and again my girlfriend Patty and her husband came over to meet my guests. Patty participates on the same board. It was a wonderful evening.

This morning I woke up with an amazing amount of pain in my jaw and found that I had yet another infection...and I lost it. My husband, sweet and caring, always there Leonard, was the one who babied me through these things, held my hand, asked the questions, and stayed by my side until I was well. And I am honest and selfish and all those horrific things when I realized I don't want to go through these things with out him. I think I can't take the thought of him not here through this round of antibiotics and steroids and whatever else. It is here where I hate the fates that brought us to this. It is here that I want to give up most. And so I stare a little bit harder at my son as I put him to bed, and I go and take the meds that will hopefully make me better...even though a little part of me doesn't want to, if it weren't for them.

I had booked a suite for us for this weekend at the Great Wolf Lodge (a hotel with a spectacular water park) outside of Sandusky and I am hoping that my face feels better by then.

Reading back on this entry, It was a good weekend. Not great, for he is not here, but not full of the despair that was all of September's weekends. I long for him so much it just doesn't feel humanly possible to miss the physical presence of someone so much that it feels as if a limb has been severed.


Laurie said...

Dear Laura,

I have to tell you girl, reading this post tonight lifted my heart and I could almost see you smile. I am so glad you had a good weekend and good company with people who LOVE you girl. I realize you will always, always miss Leonard as he holds so much of your heart, this is love. I will be praying for your infection to clear up and for you to feel better. I want you to, and with time that little part of you will want to also. It will take a while before you feel that days are great, but I have to tell you that it blessed me that the weekend was not full of despair. This does not mean that Leonard is fading, it just means that you let others in to bless you and show their appreciation for the lady you are. I am looking forward to getting my bracelet and will wear it daily as my reminder to pray for you and remember the love the two of you share. Thank you so much for this post and giving me a reason to smile for you tonight. I love you and you are doing so good, honest.

Love, Laurie in Ca.

Haylee said...

Hi Laura:

Happy to hear your weekend had some brightspots along with the bittersweet & just plain old sad:(

What causes you jaw pain> TMJ problems? How painful they can be! OUCH! I hope that clears up quickly so that you may enjoy next weekend with the children.

I would love to have a bracelet - to remind me that new loves never grews old - it just matures & deepens. I understand if you have others close to you to give them to. If you do have a spare, what is your e-mail address?

I might be a nice idea to keep a map of where his bracelets travel - mine would be to an island in the north Atlantic.

Thanks for the up-date.

Prayers for your health and well-being.

Shari said...

Sounds like he was respected and loved by a lot of people. It's wonderful that so many came to the Texas Hold 'Em for him.

I loved that "minnow" metaphor. :)

I hope you are feeling better. What is RA? Rheumatoid Arthritis? I know a woman who has it, but she acquired it in her early 60s.

I'll send you another email. Let me know if you get it. :)

The girl left behind said...

Hugs to you.

Kathy said...

I am glad you have your children Laura. They need you. I am sorry for your heart ache and your physical pain.
Thinking of you, Kathy

The Stevens Family said...

I'm glad your weekend was good. Thanks for stopping by. Your story is so touching.

Artemisia said...

I am so glad to hear you had a pleasant weekend and am always so glad to hear of all the people surrounding you.

You are doing the right thing, taking your medication. Keep going.

Shannon said...

Sounds like a nice weekend. I'm glad you are having more bright moments. HUGS

rachd said...

Oh, yay! You are finding your way! Yes, it's different than it used to be, and yes, it SUCKS!!! But, you're finding your way through and I'm happy for you for that.

The poker sounds like it was a blast, and I'll email you from my other account. You know how you say Leonard's name (and now Hannah's) every day, I do the same for them. Just wanted to share! :o)

Marsha said...

A jaw infection sounds just awful. I hope you are able to recover quickly, this is all you need.

MrsGrumpy said...

Shari-yes it is Rheumatoid Arthritis and I was diagnosed 5 years ago after 4 years of trying to figure it out and bouncing around to doctors.

haylee-The heart meds I take dry out my mouth and my teeth are taking the brunt of it. The jaw pain is being caused by an infection.

Everyone-Thank you so much for your continued support.