Alicia Lopez’s Musings

Posts Tagged ‘generations

It’s really a few more days until March, but I have a lot of thoughts in my head that I thought I would put down in writing.

The signs of spring are beginning to show up in our mountain village; it’s not as cold as it has been, and believe it or not, some of my annuals are beginning to sprout; they are brave little souls, tempting the fates of weather.

I’m a little sad today, received the news that two of my old friends from El Paso had passed away to a better life. These two were originally my hubby’s pals, having all attended Bowie High School together, and graduating in the class of 1944. It was when young men were being drafted almost as soon as they got their diplomas; so they were separated by war. A few from that class did not make it back.

Life and circumstances intervened, but they kept in touch. When the high school reunions were in full swing, they met again, to plan their 45th and then their 50th. This was when I made my entrance into that selected list of Bowie Bears, an Austin High School Panther who, by osmosis, turned into a Bear.

We joined in full swing to get the reunions going, and for many years after, still met as a group and planned outings. We even went camping, and for some, it was a first. What fun we had!

Of course, all things slowed down as Father Time intervened; we managed a few luncheon get togethers when we visited our old home town. My hubby’s death slowed events even more; I still saw them once in a while, but fewer and fewer “osos” showed up.

So it was with great sadness that I learned of their deaths; Bobby, the greatest Sinatra and baseball fan, and Pepe, a golfer who enjoyed the camaraderie of others at the golf course when he could no longer play.

I know they have all met again in heaven, to continue their everlasting friendships in that forever land.

Adios, Osos Canosos

Hasta la Vista

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This May 1st I took a step into a new decade, probably my last one.

On the above date I reached the BIG 80!  So, its only natural to assume that this will be my last one; as I read the obituaries from my home town of  El Paso, I note that most of the deaths are below that age, or slightly above.

Don’t get me wrong, I am in good health; but my life has been lived, and I am ready to go when the Good Lord calls me home to be with him and my beloved.  I hope that when I reach the pearly gates the book that records my life will be filled with pluses;  I have certainly always strived for that goal.

The last two weeks were full for me, I motored to El Paso to spend Easter with my son and family; then returned home for a few days to get ready for my birthday and Mother’s Day which would be celebrated in my hometown.

The children wanted to throw a gala celebration for the big 80, but as I told them, I was not ready for that; I preferred a low key weekend with my children, which we achieved.   First on our agenda was a visit to their dad’s grave at Ft. Bliss National Cemetary.  This is always a sad occasion, but we did manage to laugh, thinking of  things he said and did.  We played scrabble, poker, talked, laughed, cried, and generally had a very good time.  Of course, we had lunch at Chico’s Tacos,  their visit would not be complete without it.

They all left on Sunday, and I decided to stay until I was to fly to Dallas for Mother’s Day.  That weekend was also fun; I was able to see my daughter’s new houses, which are a block from each other in McKinney, a beautiful, serene place to live.  I met my grandson’s girl friend, spent time with my granddaughter and her husband, and all the assorted family members. We had decided to have a baby shower for my granddaughter on that weekend, since everyone would be in town, except for my son who lives in Ruidoso, but  he was there in spirit.

CAN YOU IMAGINE ME, A GREAT GRANDMOTHER?

Well, all I had to say was Hooray!  The little girl that I used to carry would be carrying a baby girl of her own, due to arrive July 15.  We are all so excited.

On the following  Monday, I flew back, drove to Ruidoso, and faced reality.  There is always that feeling of happiness and dread that tugs at me on the way home.  I am happy to get back, and also sad to enter that empty house again.  There is  a scurrying of activity, un- packing, washing, opening mail, paying bills, etc. that occupied most of my day, then the coming days loom ahead; sending resumes, actively looking for a job, and looking for things to fill the void.

I began to clean the yard; and not thinking, allowed my pooch Chico out  to what I considered a dog proof yard.  I got busy in the front, feeling confident that he could not get out.  When I looked around, there he was in the street.  He managed to find a way to sneak out while I was busy; the only way to get him back was to get in the car and start moving.  He got to the driveway of my neighbors across the street, so I drove up and opened the door.  He climbed in and I started backing out, thinking the way was clear. When I heard a thunk, I thought it was only a rock and kept on going, but the car stopped.  I got out and saw that I had run over a railroad tie, and it was not allowing me to move.

As my hubby used to say “How did I manage to do that?”  My excuse is that their driveway is on an incline, and I did not have a clear view.  I called my superman son, who came to the rescue.  It doesn’t look like the car sustained any damage, thank the Lord.  He drove it around for awhile, and said it seemed O. K. and told me I was very, very lucky.  The  Good Lord watches over me, what else can I say?

Stayed tuned for the next episode of the Perils of Alicia.

Hasta la Vista

Today marks the twenty first month since my hubby’s passing.

It is the beginning of a ritual of counting months that started on that day.  I thought that if I could survive that first month, I would be on my way of learning to live alone.  It has been a very long process, and sometimes I wondered if I could make it.

The human body and mind has a resilience unmatched by none.  In the face of adversity and loss, it is still able to function, albeit at a lesser pace, but function it does. Look at me, twenty one months later I am still around, and still kicking.  The sense of loss never leaves, but I have learned to live with it.

I have learned that I can still share thoughts and ideas with my hubby, in the silence of  our home which we both loved, and which is filled with memories; the Greek fishermen’s caps which he wore constantly, his collection of music, even his eyeglasses which he kept by our bed,on a funny big nose stand.

When I leave the house, those memories stay behind, to be supplemented by normal everyday occurances.  My job keeps me busy, my mind expands with the meeting of new people, and new occurances.  I have never lost my sense of humor, but it seems to be rejuvenating.

I look forward to the coming holidays; our village has begun to decorate the main street with dazzling silver boughs and the local merchants have placed the white shimmering lights on their stores, and as the song goes, “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas”.

For the first time in several years, I will have my three sons here with me for  this weekend; only the sons without my daughters in law .  It will be different, but nice. 

Next week, my daughter, son in law, and grandson from Dallas will be here for the Thanksgiving holiday,  the son who lives here and my small grandson will be present also; my cup runneth over.

The past holidays are just that, past and gone.  Time marchs on, and I have to march along with it.  So, start those drum rolls, begin the beat, and watch me strut.

Hasta la Vista

Never, in all my years, did I ever think I was getting old.

This changed drastically last week when I limped home after celebrating Mother’s Day with my children in Dallas.  My right leg had been bothering me for the past couple of weeks, I even went to the doctor, who prescribed medication for the pain.  It never gave me any relief, and pending my trip, I wanted to be free of any hindrance.  So I opted to buy some over the counter meds which had worked for me before, and  did again.

I started doing the exercises suggested by a physical therapist, bending, stretching, etc.  I was OK for a while, and suddenly out of the blue, my leg would buckle with the pain. This happened at the height of my buying spree with the gift certificates I received for Mother’s Day. 

Have you ever had to hold on to anything available to keep the weight off one leg?  I did just that, on a display rack, which came tumbling down.  How embarrassing, being on the floor along with all the clothes.  Everyone was very sympathetic and helpful, but my humiliation was complete when I could not stand up.  Right then and there I did my “bend and touch your toes” exercise, which must have confused everybody.  To me, it was the only thing I could do, to stretch those muscles which had crimped on my back.  After several of these, I was able to walk again, with as much dignity as I could muster.

Then came the question, am I getting old?  I never considered years, my hubby and I always thought young.  In fact, the song that best describes our relationship is called “You make me feel so young”; and we lived those words.

But people, there comes a time when you feel so miserable, not being able to do the things that came so natural .

I decided to fight this feeling, and went to see an orthopedic doctor.  He took x-rays of my hips, and declared them to be in good shape.  (I was already thinking hip replacement)  He did recommend an MRI of my back, his thinking being that the muscles there were in a mass of crimping, leaning on a nerve that runs down my leg.  They scheduled me for tomorrow, and I am ready; if his reasoning turns out true, then he can cure me with shots.

Although shots on my back are not my favorite things to get, I do want to get rid of the pain, because I want to dance at my grand daughter’s wedding.  My dancing partner is no longer here, but I will rope my sons or sons in law to dance.  What better place to make a fool of myself than a family wedding.

I wonder what the people in New York will think of me?  I hope they will see a happy, youthful grandmother, kicking her heels in happiness at seeing her “children’s children” joined in matrimony.

Hasta La Vista

September 10, 1950.

A day that lives in my heart, evoking memories of  a happy event which changed our lives forever.

Today would have been our 59th wedding anniversary.

I think back and remember the excitement we felt, ready to take on the world, for we had each other and nothing could stop us.

Exiting the church, a friend of my new hubby informed him that he had just been recalled into the Navy.  This was the beginning of the Korean War, and so for the first few months of our newly wedded bliss, this little black cloud hung over our heads, as he was also in the Naval Reserve.

Thank heaven the call never came.

So much has changed since that day, it is almost impossible to believe.  We now live in a world of new innovations which did not exist at that time; computers, television, cell phones, newer and newer electronic devises, faster automobiles, heating and cooling  sun powered units, microwave ovens.  How did we ever get along without them?  We even saw man land on the moon! Since then we have witnessed numerous excursions into outer space.

Wrapped up in our lives and the children that followed, we were also very aware of the happenings around us.  We experienced the many events which are now a part of history; the assassination of a President and his brother, and also that of a civil rights icon and many men and women who fought for their rights.

As man is also the worst enemy of man, we have gone through several wars, with more ferocious and destructive weapons.  Will we ever learn?

Life is so short, enjoy every minute of it; turn around and half of your existence is gone.

What I wouldn’t give to have my love here with me, fifty eight years were not nearly enough.

Hasta la vista

Two weeks ago I began a new page in my life; I decided to start a painting project which my hubby and I had put off for a year because of his declining health.  He loved to sit by the window and view the many changes of the day, from dawn to dusk.  He always said “We’ve got to paint the deck, it really needs it”.

All these home upkeeps we did together, me being his assistant.  So it is no wonder that I learned the fundamentals of  building, carpentry, plumbing, painting.  I decided to put this small knowledge to good use and start with the deck.

I assembled all tools required, as I remembered them.  I could feel his presence urging me on when I became discouraged, such as forgetting to have a rag handy for wiping off drops of paint, etc.  Once I stepped on such a drop and had to quickly take off my shoes and clean them before I went in the house.

It has been two weeks, and today was the day I finally put the second coat of paint on all that wood!  All that is needed now is to put the sealer.  I did have some help for the past two weekends, my daughters from Dallas and my sons in law flew in to give me a hand, and of course I always have the presence of the one son who lives locally and always watches over me.  Without them I would not have progressed this far.  I am so lucky to have five children who are always willing to help in one way or another.

I had quite a conversation with some neighbors who dropped by while I was painting.  They were  four deer who stopped to eat some leafs from my trees, and did not mind that I was there.  They continued to feed their bodies while I continued to feed my soul.  I spoke to my husband and asked his opinion on my painting.  I knew he would say that I was doing very well, but was a little bit on the messy side. Those had always been his comments while alive, so why should they change with his passing?

I have started to learn the art of living alone;  I am not quite there yet and still have my moments, but they are beginning to be further apart.  I had never watched daytime television, but I now find myself watching the game shows, such as “The Price is Right”, “Deal of no Deal” etc.  I sometimes fantasize appearing on the shows and winning all that money; I might try it someday.  I don’t think I will act as crazy as some of the contestants, but then , you never know.

My little pooch and I walk the trail around one of the local golf courses every day, and it has turned out to be good exercise for both of us.  We meet all kinds of people and pets, and take the time to speak to them.

So life goes on,  and I am floating along with it.

Hasta la Vista

Sunrise

The natural disasters which have taken place, earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, etc. have all claimed lives.  Yet more lives are lost worldwide by man’s inhumanity to man.

Have we not learned the lessons taught us by history? Are we again on the road to mankind’s destruction?

Armageddon, the battlefield described in the Bible in Revelation, as the scene of the predicted final struggle between good and evil, seems to be inching its way into society.  The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, war, civil strife, hunger and death, seem to be riding full gallop at our world.

Is there a defense against all this?

In my opinion, the defense must begin in our own homes.  We must teach our children to respect their bodies, their homes, their schools, and their world.

To respect their bodies, they must treat them as temples of good, forsaking the drugs which bring instant gratification, but turn quickly into life-long dependency.

We have recently seen examples of this where several young actresses and performers have wound up in jail.

To respect their homes, they must first obey their parents and follow the guidelines set for them.  Their home is a place of refuge, from which the world’s ills can best be avoided.  Granted, parents are not perfect, but the great majority want what is best for their children.

The youngsters, on the other hand, are unformed beings who learn by example.  The parents have the task of being the first and foremost teachers to their offspring.  If the base is solid, it will hold against all temptations thrown at them by the world.

We are brothers and sisters in humanity, placed here to protect and save our environment for future generations.  What reward can there be in traveling to the moon and distant planets, if we cannot cross the street to help a human being in distress?

Today’s young ones are the leaders of tomorrow, perhaps residing in our own home. They  should be learning compassion and caring; the future captains of industry must temper their achievements with deeds of charity.  Money can buy a multitude of “things”, but seldom buys happiness.

We adults must take a good hard look at ourselves.  We did not individually cause the havoc being wrought, but we can unite to fight and correct it.

Let’s join hands and start that fight; how about it?

Hasta la vista amigos.

Earth