Just How Old Are We?

Physically we grow old. Period. Think about that for a minute.

Okay. You’re minute is up.

What else did you think about when you were contemplating that statement above? Perhaps you thought I may be growing physically old, but mentally I’m still quite capable of committing teenage acts of craziness.

I’m to be sixty-five years old next month. Don’t let me ever hear you say I’m sixty-five years young. That’s BS, plain and simple. I’m 65 years OLD physically and this old body ain’t what it used to be. My wife, Libby, has repeatedly told me that growing old sucks. Yes it does. The “Golden Years” to me only means I might need Depends.

But I don’t intend to go down without enjoying the years she and I have left. We laugh, we cry, we do things together and we talk about everything. Nothing, and I mean nothing, is hid from each other. She is the only person that I have told everything I have done that is life-altering or eventful. Libby is the one person with whom I have shared even my deepest, darkest secrets. I trust her.

With that said, we intend to grow old together. We share each other’s lives. When one is down the other is there to lift up the spirit. We pray for each other. That’s something that I admittedly didn’t do in my previous marriage. I won’t go into why I think that’s the case. It’s my statement of fact. It just did not happen.

Libby and I are mentally very much younger than we appear. We still hold hands everywhere we go. People have even complimented us or commented that people should still do that more often. To me, touch is an important function between two people. We kiss each other before we get out of the car. Don’t ask why, we just do. I have been known to pat her on the butt in Wal-Mart or any other public place if I feel like it. She gives me that big smile and says, did you just touch my butt? I’ll say yes, what are you going to do about it? Then she’ll smile real big. HA!  Sometimes we just stop and look each other in the eyes to see what’s inside.  The windows of the soul do say a lot.

In our heart and soul we’re still young. That’s what we are. That’s what we do. It’s us thumbing our nose at the grim reaper and pushing him off to the distant future.

One of my cousin’s husband posted a picture that so aptly applies to Libby and me. I had to pull that picture into my album. It makes me think of Libby and me. I’m thinking this is something we ought to do. I don’t care how old you are; maybe you ought to consider it. How young do you feel? How young at heart do you want to be?

Libby and me

Posted in Ponderings | 4 Comments


Today I realized something. There was a day when I thought when I died I would not have bouquet-of-daisies-for-weddinga single soul come to the funeral. Morbid, eh? I felt like I’d lost my last friend during those dark days. One thing that always remained in my thinking was that today does not rule my tomorrow.

Tomorrow is a brighter day no matter what today looks like. I don’t intend to look at yesterday. It’s gone. It can’t be changed. So whatever today brings I deal with it while formulating what I feel I should do. What I should do is determined by what I hear God saying. Sometimes I’m a bit slow at figuring it out, but in the end the Word prevails.

When I met Libby I had no intentions on my mind, but eventually I became aware of something good in her. She was and still is good for my well-being. She is a gem among gems. She’s light where darkness once reigned. I have no words for what she really means to me.

Apparently a lot of people have realized what the two of us have. We are getting married in two days and once the word was out it seems to have taken on a life of its own. Well, I didn’t die. Something better is happening than life itself.

Once the word was out our once thought to be a small wedding has grown. It’s taken on a life of its own. Every time I turn around another person is telling me they are coming to the wedding. Some even looked at me like I am being mean for not having invited them, so I invite them. I have no problem with friends coming that I’ve missed.

There are people who have come out of nowhere to help with the wedding. One member of the church is taking care of setting up the church with flowers and such. Another has taken over the setup of the reception and food for the reception has been taken care of by a group of ladies.

One thing above all is that I have one of my sons and my daughter-in-law and granddaughter are coming. That in itself is a blessing to me.

I am truly thankful for following God in the last couple of years more than any other time in my life. He blessed me with Libby. Past circumstances are nullified by His forgiveness. What Libby and I have is pure in thought and deed. We intend to make the rest of our lives a rich, rewarding time for the both of us.

Now that the thoughts of a lonely funeral are gone, I don’t have to think about that. I have a rich, fulfilling day today and forever more. I have friends. People who think much of Libby and me will be there to witness the joining together of Libby’s and my life. Libby didn’t expect many people and we don’t really worry about numbers of people, but the impact of all these people who will come has had on the two of us. We just didn’t realize how many of them they are.

We are blessed.

Posted in Love, Ponderings, Soulmate, Spiritual | 2 Comments

Life’s Events

I haven’t written much lately. Life has been a challenge when you have to make changes that aren’t necessarily things you want to doRing 1_edited.

I’ve been separated from my ex for over six years and due to a large amount of obstacles to overcome it’s been impossible to make the goals I set down as reachable. But considering the nature of life I’ve adopted many years ago I’ve learned to work even harder to get there.

I was mixed up in my mind for several years in my mid to late fifties and whether anyone wants to admit it or not I felt totally out of control. I do admit to making several mistakes and I’ve paid for them in full. Depression and anxiety attacks are not recommended for the faint-of-heart. Some of you may even know what I’m talking about.

My marriage was dissolving before my very eyes and although I played my part badly, I was left with several thousand dollars of debt I didn’t create. I still do not have an answer as to how or why it happened. In fact, I had no idea it was happening. It was kept from me by my ex. In all honesty I can’t blame her entirely for it. I had maintained a set of blinders to the situation, not wanting to know what my financial situation was. I would ask was all in order and was told yes. I took her word on it and turned a blind eye.

After we separated I fought hard to get my head back together and found myself in a relationship with another woman that was probably not the best thing to do in some ways only by when it happened more than how it happened.

I had started studying divorce at least a year before I actually left. I just couldn’t see the feasibility of leaving at the time. Libby was more of a catalyst in helping me realize I had to follow through with it. She didn’t steal me, coerce me or anything. Our talks led us to a conclusive agreement that we should both go to our respective places and try to make that work, but over time we found that we could not deal with going back to our spouses.

I knew after counseling I was in need of long-term help and I sought it as much as possible and with medication I have found with time I’m more of a sound individual than I’ve ever been in my entire life. Trying to live with my ex would not have done any good for either of us. I could spend a good while writing about why I know this, but let’s just leave it at that for another time.

Libby came back into my life on a full time basis. I have cried many times on her shoulder and she has always been a comfort to me. Always. Never has she turned me away and is always there when I need her. I have found it very easy for me to love her and be there for her. I can read her like a book. She can say something that reminds me of the lyrics of a song and I’ll sing a bit of it and she’ll join in. Seems she knows all the songs I know. Over time I found I cannot be a day without her. She is my constant companion. If you see me, you see her.

It’s been six years and this past Friday the marriage came to an end in court. It was a simple, procedural function where I swore on the stand that I was agreeing to the terms. In just a minute at most I heard the gavel come down as the judge said “Divorce granted” as I stepped down from the witness stand. I am now a free man again.

It’s my hope my ex can move on with her life and find whatever or who she can lean on for support. In short, she’ll deserve whatever she makes of her life from here on.

The past is just that. The past. Now for a future.

I called Libby and told her all was said and done. When I said I was a free man, I meant it. I freely have taken on the responsibility of Libby. She’s my friend first, then companion, my confidant. Most of all the fore things mentioned equals the sum of what our love for each other is. She is truly my lover.

Instead of all the juicy details of a love life I place here the less intimate things. I enjoy cooking for her. I help her clean house. We have been remodeling the house together. She helps keep the garden cleaned up and I make sure the plants are healthy as possible. I do keep the yard mown and trimmed. She plants flowers and such and “decorates” the yard as well.

Then there are the evenings where we have recorded programs we like from TV. We’ll eat our dinner together and many times she’ll finish and rest her head on my shoulder and lightly snore while I keep tabs on the programs we watch so I can catch her up if need be.
A very, very important thing between us is that we communicate. We talk. We talk all the time. We have early mornings to go to work, so we try to go to bed early, usually by eight or so, but we end up talking some evenings till ten or so. She’s very smart and inquisitive about all aspects of life. She hears God speak and she’ll ask me what I think or can I explain something. I listen to her carefully. I learn from her as well. This aspect of our relationship is a testament of how we’ve come so far and still love each other as it were the first time we met. She has dove into my life wanting to know every detail. She really wants to know how I tick. I can read her like a book. She thinks about everything in depth, yet she can be impulsive. I thought people who analyze things are slower to make a decision, but she’s different this way. It’s not a dig on her. It’s just who she is. I love her just the way she is. I hope she never changes.

So. Why this writing? On the 24th of July 2015, she and I will get married. I’ve learned from past experience that marriage isn’t something to take lightly. It’s not something to jump right into. Come on. We’ve been together for a long time now and I know we’re meant to be together. If I could have changed the past, I would have, but God knows what I needed and all the water under the bridge has gone forever. Today is a new day. Libby. I can’t describe her with words. She just is.

She is to me everything I have ever wanted in a companion. My life event? To marry my partner.

Posted in Ponderings | 3 Comments

Comfortably Numb

comfortably numbSome may recognize the subject title as the name of a song by Pink Floyd. Libby and I were talking last evening about life in general and I said that I had learned to not let things bother me like they used to do. I only get upset with people I don’t know. Namely people in other cars around me when I’m driving are my triggers. They’re idiots in large part, but that’s another story. I was told by my previous wife that I had to be leader of the pack. She may have been right, but I just don’t like being crowded in. I move at my own pace which is the envelope pushing limit above the speed limit. Okay, how’d I get onto this rabbit trail?

Oh, comfortably numb. Being able to absorb things around me and swallow it up and go on is something I’m good at here in my latter years. The problem arises when like eating something bad, it does affect me, but I don’t fret over it. I was recently in a situation where I had to enter a man’s home where the situation was tense. Another guy and I went into this man’s home to retrieve some items belonging to someone else. I already knew before I got there this guy had a gun. I was not going unprepared. I have a concealed carry and my gun was on me. The man who lives there had what appeared to be his parents in attendance when we entered. The man did not get out of his chair the whole time and my summation of this was he was sitting on his gun. I did not leave my back to him at any time there and we were out quickly. After I got back home it hit me the seriousness of the situation. I went to bed and slept four hours from exhaustion. But I was able to absorb the heightened sense of danger and get through it. I’ve known the day that I would not have been able to do that.

Libby looked at me when I said I was able to not let things bother me and said I should be able to because of modern medicine. Sertraline and Lorazepam are a part of my day, every day. I’m not an abuser. I stay true to my regime and really don’t take a full dose of either when I do take it. I take just enough to make the difference between a difficult day and a good day. You could say comfortably numb.

When I first started taking Sertraline all the side effect hit me. Profuse sweating was the most horrible physical side of them. I’d break out sweating like a whore in church, proverbially speaking. The other was a disorder that was quite interesting, but I’ll let you go look that up and draw your own conclusions. So eventually I halved the dose to get the desire effect with less side-effect. I found my balance.

Another side-effect was that it left me emotionally flat. I didn’t get upset about anything. Even bad drivers on the road didn’t bother me. I lost that side-effect when I half dosed. Smiling here. I could have cut my hand off with a skill saw and I would have calmly wrapped it and gone to the ER. Of course I’d take my hand with me for reattachment, but eh. I was okay. Just something I would have had to deal with, but nothing to get excited about.

I do have a very active mind that is always calculating situations for what possible outcomes might happen. It leads to ever conclusive scenarios that don’t shut off. It’s never been proven or diagnosed, but I’m pretty sure I have some thought process that is always leading me from one thing to another never really completely solving any of them. Some might call it ADHD or something like that. Whatever it is I’ve learned to cope with it except in one area. I can’t shut my mind off when I go to bed anymore. It is still actively sorting out situations when I go to bed. To my rescue come Lorazepam. I half dose that too for the desired effect and I sleep comfortably with unusual dreams that I’m a non-participant most of the time, so it has little effect on me.

Life at my present age is something that I wondered about years ago. Would I be paranoid about death and waiting for my demise? Now that I’m here and on these medications I have no emotion about it one way or the other. I don’t anticipate death. I anticipate life. Libby has refreshed my life and given me something to live for.

Comfortably numb? Yes. To some extent I am, but still I have an awareness that doesn’t require I get excited or depressed about whatever is going on. I’ve learned to absorb it. Life is here to enjoy.

Posted in Old Age, Ponderings, Random Thoughts, Spiritual | Leave a comment

Peace Within. . .

I laid down on my bed last night and just soaked in all the new freshness of a completely redone room. It felt so good. I just wish the rest of the house was the same. It will happen.

I stood in front of the bathroom mirror last evening as I thought. . . I have a few good years left on this earth. I want to make it a better time to enjoy the fruits of my labors. I don’t know how much longer before I start having issues that will take away freedom to enjoy life to the fullest. I’ve lost three of my brothers. All younger than me. I don’t question why I’m still here and in decent health. The matters of the world can go to hell. Just leave me alone and let me be. I don’t feel like today, tomorrow, next week, month or year will be “that” time. I just know I want to enjoy life a little more than the work-a-day world.

The politics of the world, the struggles of the few to be leaders for whatever reason, the power hungry can all do whatever they want, but their own devices will sooner or later catch up to them and they’ll pay for whatever it is they do, no matter if it be good or bad. I can worry myself into a corner, but why should I? I have to live to my best and make my own way to peace for myself.

I just plain feel it’s time to slow down from the faster pace of “doing” all the time.  I’m reminded of a verse in the Bible that says:

. . .For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.  – I Tim 4:8

Peace comes from within the spirit and soul.  Taking care of the body is of little value compared to obtaining that peace.

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To Go or Not To Go, That Is The Question

Today there is snow and ice on the ground. It can be considered a typical February weather event. Still, local folks still don’t seem to have enough of it to gain experience in driving in it nor does our DOT have equipment to properly maintain roads for clear passage.

Libby and I came in to work today two hours late because we decided on our own accord it wasn’t safe. You would think with the diversity of people in a military setting we’d have a sufficient pool of knowledge to anticipate and maintain a ready communication with its staff whether active duty or civilian. But that’s not the case.

It snowed yesterday until the ground was covered and then it sleeted on top of that to seal it on the roads, then the command decided to let us all go home. They said be safe and everyone scurried off into the roadways slick with this sure recipe of ice, snow and temps in the upper 20’s. As we left they assured us for the present moment we would be on a regular schedule for today. Surely they jest.

I was up at my usual time this morning and after venturing out we made the plan to wait till the sun was up.   Why? Because we checked the news on TV and there was nothing to indicate a change in status. I checked the base website. It was on a two hour delay, but us, no such announcement. The Navy operates on its own accord in events like this. The hospital Facebook page carried nothing newer than a fifteen hour old announcement from the previous day. Nothing new to parallel the base’s announcement of the delay was to be seen.

The leadership of the hospital at present can’t necessarily be blamed. It’s been this way since I’ve worked here. That’s twenty-seven year’s worth of the same.

Employees are always frustrated by the hold over in bad weather and then expected to come in on time with the roads still impassable on the side roads. Some even live several miles away. They, as well as me, are left to wonder what to do, especially when we are required to arbitrarily take leave.  All I can hope for is that someone will decide to give the civilian workforce admin time.

There’s still a hitch in the get-a-long though. Some contractors don’t allow for pay to employees to operate under the command’s admin time policy. Without question they will have to use leave or get no pay for time off. What gets me is that these contracting companies get paid for so many days, even it an employee is out without pay. How do they make money, you ask? At the expense and possibly the life of one of their employees, because if they know they’re not getting paid they will venture out no matter what to ensure they have money to support their families and themselves if no one else. Why would I think a contractor is so selfish? I know one for sure is under investigation for misappropriation of funds. Look it up if you like. It’s news in Maryland. They shouldn’t even be allowed to hold government contracts.

My rant this morning is brought to you by normal everyday life. It’s not new nor will it get old. Or maybe it has already has.

Posted in Ponderings, Work | 1 Comment

I’m Home

Walking up from my garage this morning elicited new thoughts. I haven’t moved for 27 years until a month ago. I have known for years the voice of God Home 20150111and also the open door principle.

I felt the urging some time ago to look at this house Lib and I are now in. I played with the thought for some time, but placed it off the table. Then mid-November the prodding came afresh. I told Lib to let’s take a closer look at this house. I called the agent and set up a showing. We found it had been built in 1973. It is brick and is solid. It had been mildly updated, but much updating is still needed in the kitchen, dining and hallway. The doors needed new knobs, but really the whole set of inside doors should be replaced. The flooring was done with a very cheap grade of laminate wood grain flooring. The baseboards, quarter round and door facings had been replaced by someone with just enough experience to cut a piece of wood. They didn’t know much about a measuring tape, though. The bathroom had been completely overhauled with a new tub and it was very fresh and with functional tub, toilet, cabinet and vanity. But the walls are not very likeable. The trim was amateurish. The flooring was not level and upon inspection we found sometime joists had been attacked by termites, but had been repaired and treated. There were other floor joists that needed new supports, which I had the owner repair before purchase. The previous owner had had new double pane windows installed, but two already had that foggy look and I had them fix those as well.

Sounds like I should have walked away from the needs this house has, but here’s what happened. Lib wanted the house and I did as well for the fact that it has a half-acre yard with a huge unattached garage and paved driveway. I later found the garage was once a welding shop business by the previous owner. He and his wife had passed on and the children were selling it as sort of an estate sale. They, being the owners then, were willing to sell at a giveaway price. It had been reduced by ten thousand dollars. All I will say is when I heard the selling price I was astounded to find it well under $100 grand.

Looking at the state of the house and the state of my previous home didn’t take much for Lib and I to agree to offer whatever the owners were asking. Problem was the day we looked at it we found there was another interested party. Problem one. Yet I felt to go ahead with the offer.

Later that day I was told to secure the offer I would need to get approved for the loan. That was not a problem. The next morning after church Lib and I went to a mortgage loan representative and were approved on the spot. We stopped by on the way back home to look at the inside of the garage and the realty agent told me then that the other prospective party had declined to place a bid. Now it was up to Lib and me.

Monday morning was a holiday from work, so I had gone out to get something to eat at the local Piggly Wiggly and decided to stop at my neighbor’s business across the street. When I asked him was he interested he looked at me like I was pulling his leg and it took several acknowledgements to get him to believe I wasn’t. He asked me how much and I told him. On the spot he offered to buy at the price I asked. Deal. I’d made an offer, gotten approved and sold my house in a span of three days. On the fourth day I was moving out of my house into this house.  I had told Libby when God moves He can move quickly so she should be prepared.

The provocation to look at this house again was God speaking to me. Once I looked and spoke what I was hearing, things happened so quickly Libby could not believe it. Doors opened left and right. We’ve been in this house paying rent to live here from the middle of November until closing and now for almost a month since closing.

Surprisingly I do not miss my two acres down the road seven tenths of a mile. I feel very much at home here. I’m sitting in my living room tapping this out on my laptop while the Contemporary Christian music channel plays on Pandora, feeling the blessing of God upon this house.

It’s the little things that count as well, which to some would seem not important and

Veteran's Day Parade in Morehead City NC

Veteran’s Day Parade in Morehead City NC

material. I gave up a 1955 BelAir Chevy when I gave my heart to God in 1977 because I felt Him tell me it was my god. It was a true statement. Now all those years later I feel that owning the car I’d always wanted was a gift and now I have a garage to put it in and cover it up so I can take it out and drive it and enjoy it. And Libby and I do enjoy it with the top down breezing down the highway.

Still Libby has a nice car and I have yet an old beater of an S10 for hauling stuff around in. We both have wonderful jobs and I hope to retire the end of this year.

I know there are people who think they hurt me because I hurt them, but in reality I can’t be hurt. The love of God is strong on and in me. I have forgiven them. I release them to God. Libby and I are recognized for our love for each other in our church and we’ve developed new friends and we have become a part of the community of Richlands. In all the years I’ve lived here I’ve not felt that till we moved into this house just a month ago. Strange as it may seem, I’d never felt this way.

Yes, I admit my decisions hurt some people close to me, but I’ve found from other friends and family that their viewpoint was I was not a well man then. To me I was in a fight for my life. I knew I was dying and I had to get out of it. I made only one mistake. Not having done it sooner.

So my thought as I walked up from the garage this morning? It is that I’m “home” for the Libby and Me and Church St Pub with Bob and Judy 20141101first time in a long time and I have the love of a woman who truly knows unconditional love and demands nothing of me, but to be myself. I ask nothing of her other than to not change who she is. She’s everything I pictured in my early teens when I asked God what my wife would be like. I can’t marry her as yet because of the liberality with which the judge meted out “punishment” on me in alimony to my previous relationship. Under the laws of the state of NC I am bound to that, but my heart is unbound in the realm of the spirit and I have all I ever wanted in life and cannot be brought down, not because of me, but by the help and blessings of God am I standing. That’s my thoughts this morning.

Posted in Ponderings | 1 Comment