Alicia Lopez’s Musings

Posts Tagged ‘love

Ah, February, the month set aside for lovers.

Unless you are from a planet far away in the distance, you know that this month brings extra beatings to your heart, sets many a set of eyes a-flutter, and brings some of the strongest men to their knees.

I know of which I speak, because “I’ve had a love of my own”, as the song states.

My hubby and I were married for fifty eight years before his passing, and never a Valentine’s Day went by that we did not remember each other in some special way. During the lean years it might have been just a love note tucked away in unexpected places, a surprise hug, a rose cut from our garden and placed by the bedside.

The last Valentine’s Day we spent together, he was too weak to give more than a kiss. I made up for it by buying him a plant that he had always admired, telling him he was my true love, and hiding my tears from him; six days later, he was gone.

It has been three years, and I still miss him terribly. It is very hard to live alone with your memories, and try to fill that empty space in your life. How can you replace half a soul ripped from you?

This special day for lovers I ask each of you to hold tight with what you have; forgive small grievances, and perhaps even larger ones, life is too short to hold on to grudges. Ask yourself what you would do without him, or her, the lovable parts without the less loveable.

Yes, I will repeat the words from the song “Hello Young Lovers” where ever you are, ” I’ve had a love of my own”.

Hasta La Vista

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You have all certainly heard that old story/fairy tale about “The Cat in the Hat”?

Well I have a new one for you, The Cat in the Church.  This is not a fairy tale, but a true story of a certain gold and white Tabby who has decided to make the church his Sunday home.

Several months ago he wandered rather leisurely up the center aisle of our church, St. Joseph’s Mescalero Apache Mission in Mescalero, New Mexico.  He was picked up and taken outside.  Being very wiley, he sneaked back in whenever the door was opened by a parishioner.  After quite a few attempts to keep him out, he prevailed in making this building his own.

He obviously belongs to someone, as he sports a jaunty red collar, and he keeps himself/herself well groomed.  The children are quite taken with him, and a lot of grown ups too.

He fancied me during last Sunday’s service, sat on my lap and purred, than wandered over to my two friends and did the same.  He decided it was time for his grooming, and spent quite some time doing this chore which is normal to felines.  Deciding he looked quite handsome, he jumped off, and went to the altar to sit among the flowers and gaze at the audience.  He also gave the choir the once-over, but thankfully did not join in the singing.  I think he is masculine, but has a feminine-sounding meow.

Our priest decided that since he had made himself part of the congregation, he would name him Cat-achism.  This elicited a few groans and chuckles. Where he spends the rest of the week is a mystery, but Sister feeds him whenever he does show up.

This started me thinking; God loves all his creatures, man included, so it is quite normal that this particular feline feels at home in His house.

During the Christmas season, when a full teepee was installed at the altar, with the Holy Family inside, the priest said Cat-achism led the congregation in paying homage to them by visiting the teepee at the end of services.  This was said tongue-in-cheek, but some truth prevails in this.  After all, at the birth of the Christ Child, it was the animals who kept Him warm in that manger.

So,  it is that a small creature feels comfortable, and welcomed in His presence.

Would that the rest of the world behaved likewise.

Hasta La Vista

The name says it all–I don’t know what to call my writings for today, except that.

It started as an ordinary day, being awaken by my faithful alarm clock (my pooch Chico) at 5:30 A. M.  Why go back to bed?

I turned on my computer and started by reading all my e mails, none too important, people trying to sell me things I don’t need or want.  Those that I do answer are all my faithful Publisher’s Clearing House notes which promise to make me a millionaire.  Why not?  Somebody has to win, it might as well be me.

Then I check my bank, want to make sure of what I’ve got, then I go to the fun stuff==Facebook!  Here is where I get to read all the postings of those who are my friends on this wonderful website.  I see their pictures, read their comments, laugh at some and pout at others.  I don’t write anything, except maybe a comment or two on my families postings.  Who would know that someday I would be able to keep up with everyone’s doings, whether they wanted me to or not.  Hey, put it on Facebook and the world knows about it.

I went to the casino and had some good luck; the penny slots were good to me.  Several hours pass and I forget everything except what’s going on in their digital brains.  One game in particular gets my fancy; they are all rock and roll insects who play the guitar, and when you hit the bonus, they all play their hearts away while giving you money.  What a good past time if you don’t overdo it, because sometimes they refuse to come out and play.

I  got home and had some sad news , an old friend passed away.  By old, I don’t mean by age, but by years of knowing him.  He was somewhat instrumental in getting my hubby and me together.  He was a friend to both of us, and eventually we met through his sisters.

We were close at one time, as young married couples tend to be; then our children started to arrive and pulled us in different directions. We met here and there and compared notes, but time slipped away and before we knew it, the Good Lord called them both home; I am sure they will meet again , and be pals as they once were. As Sophocles said “Now let the weeping cease, let no one mourn again, these things are in the hands of God”.

It’s easy to say,  but so hard to do.  Next month will mark the second anniversary of my love’s passing, and I know he is in God’s hands, but I am here by myself, coping as best I can.  Each day is a new beginning, and passes quite quickly.  I don’t know where my life is heading, but I want to be fully aware of it when it does.

Assure your families that they are loved, over and over again.

Hasta la Vista

Happy New Year, Feliz Ano Nuevo!

Today marks the beginning of a new book,  page one , chapter one,  in our lives.  What we write on it, and the consequences will be up to us.

I hope that what I assemble will be hopeful and courageous, with a little bit of humor thrown in.  Hopeful in the sense that my life will be worth something  more other than just breathing, surely the good Lord kept me on this earth for a good reason. Courageous with a sense that I will be able to handle whatever comes my way with my normal sense of humor to sustain me.

This February will mark the second anniversary of my hubby’s passing, and I can see the difference in my life.  I still feel the loneliness, but that, I am told, will never go away, just diminish in strength.  I have done so many things I never did before, to the smallest of tasks (putting W D 40 on the hinges of my doors) to the largest (actually driving in the snow with all the advice I had gotten from my hubby in the past) to the mundane ( surviving a black out with candles all over the house).

For someone who had all the above, and everything else,  done by my spouse, I am a little proud of myself.  I know he certainly would be.

One thing that I wish I had paid more attention to is the upkeep of the car.  I wish I knew more about the mysterious workings of the engine, and all its components.  I have told the guys at my work to teach their spouses more about this, so if they ever find themselves in my situation they will be more knowledgeable; but as usual, this is something that they find falls in their domain.

I find myself thankful that I was my hubby’s helper in all his projects around the house, I know what each tool is for, and how to use it.  I am also very thankful for the son who lives here, who has taken over as my handyman.  He too learned a lot from his Dad while helping him with the bigger tasks.

I am also thankful for the companionship of my pooch, Chico, who is such a comfort to me.  People who do not have pets will not understand the strength you derive from the love and devotion of a furry little animal.  He is the one who faithfully waits for me by the door, who guards the house, who is there as either a sounding or a crying board, putting his paw on me, as if to say “I understand”.

While my life is not completely full,  it is still undergoing some of the growth that I know I will eventually have.  I will welcome and wait for it, for as long as it takes.

I am thankful for my health, my faith, my children, and my extended family.  These all help to fill the void.

Hasta La Vista

Almost the entire world believes that the New Year starts on January 1.  I believed it too until I realized that my world was not in sync with everyone else’s.

My world, as I saw it then, ended on February 20, 2009, the date of my husband’s passing.  I could not see past that date to any future.  After 59 years of marriage losing your life partner was just too much to digest.  How could I possibly live without him?  As I have stated before, my faith and my children sustained me through the hardest days of my life, and continue to do so to this day.

I did live, and continue to do so, without him by my side.  I speak to him everyday, as I did when he was alive, telling him of my problems, what I accomplished that day, and things that I put aside.  It comforts me, and I believe that he hears me.

Our children all came to Ruidoso to attend the first anniversary mass of his death at our place of worship, St Joseph’s Mescalero Apache Mission in Mescalero, New Mexico.  How he loved that church and its community; when we first attended mass there he told me he felt like he was finally home.  Being there has also helped me to cope, and I believe the congregation  has been a large part of it.

My heart was filled with gratitude and pride when I saw all our family there, not only our children, but sisters, nieces, and brothers-in-law, who drove from El Paso to attend.  My cup runneth over.

After the mass everyone congregated at the church hall, and I had so many people come and speak to me about him.  He used to sing in the choir, and Father Paul, our pastor, commented on the fact that he missed seeing his smiling face every Sunday.

It was a very personalized service, and I will always to grateful for that.

My New Year started that day; I will go forward to the future, praying for the best; keeping his memory alive in my heart, because  he was, after all,  the love of my live.

Hasta La Vista

I journeyed back today from my visit to our children in Dallas.  The time passes so swiftly, I can hardly believe a week has gone by.

This is the norm, the days pass by so slowly when you are looking forward to that trip, and they fly by when you are actually at your destination and enjoying the assorted family members surrounding you.

We spend the majority of the time talking, laughing, remembering, and sometimes crying.  As the holidays approach, we look forward to them with some trepidation.  This will be the first holiday season without my beloved.  To them it will be the first without their father, and grandfather.  He was so enthusiastic about everything that pertained to this time, that he infused it to everyone.

We will change a few things about the celebration, having decided to draw names this year for the first time in our history;  I can say in half a century, since he and I were married fifty eight years. We always did the shopping together, he carrying the packages and giving his nod of approval for whatever I chose.  His expertise was with the manly things, the girly ones he usually left to me.

This Thanksgiving we will all be together, except for my granddaughter who lives in New York, and a grandson who cannot bear to leave his dog in a kennel.  I told him if I didn’t have three dogs  already invited to the feast, I would tell him to bring his Maddie, but she is much larger than the other three pooches and I can foresee problems.  People who are not dog lovers will wonder at his decision to not come, but I completely understand;  I have been a dog person for years.

So, I look forward to their coming and to our time together.  They always love Ruidoso, and cannot bear the thought that one day I may have to sell the house and leave, but Father Time has a way of diminishing mere mortals, and I am a realist.  I will have to move closer to where I have more family and medical support, although my son who lives here tells me he would take care of me by himself, but I would not tie him down to an ailing mother, he still has his own life to live.

Hopefully that will be in the future, relegated to “some day”.  My health is good, and I am slowly but surely learning to live again.

Hasta la Vista

I returned home today after a week and a half of traveling.  I spiraled off to Dallas and surrounding areas to visit my daughters and son who live there.

My trip had a double purpose, seeing them, and house and dog sitting.  I enjoyed both tremendously.  The pooches are a couple of six month old Westies, just as cute as they can be.  They are brothers from the same litter, so of course they had to have appropriate names.  After much thought and debate, their names became Niles and Frazier (as from the old Frazier television show).

They are very playful, and thank goodness , they are finally house broken.   As siblings go, they also have quarrels which can become quite noisy.  They learned quickly when grandma said “Stop” they were to end the barking and snarling.  Oh, and grandma also likes to read, so they are not to climb up on her lap or demand petting while she is thus occupied.  Its not very different from teaching your children the rights and wrongs of living.  Stern warnings usually accomplish the task.

I was not prepared for the weather there.  I had been told it was in the 80’s, so I took summer clothing.  When I arrived, a big storm hit, including tornado warnings, and the weather turned cold.  I borrowed my son-in-law’s warm sweat tops, and lived in them for a while.

As usual on my visits, all the family hangs out together, and we celebrated one grandson’s and daughter- in- laws birthdays with a lot of joking and laughing.  I did have a moment  in the bedroom I occupied; one of my beloved’s Greek sailor hats that he wore constantly was on display.  It took that glance to bring on the tears; I can’t help it, they come unexpected and unannounced.

My pooch and I were happy to return home, and begin our lives again.  The weather had turned colder, and we have the glorious golds and reds on the trees  surrounding our village.  Fall is here and winter not too long behind.  I will be considered a traitor when I state that I am not looking forward to it; I love the snow, but cannot drive in it.  The merchants love it, as it signifies the skiers will be arriving. I too will welcome them, from the safety of my easy chair in front of the fireplace.

Hasta la vista

The Puppies

I have been in hog heaven for the past two weekends; first my two wonderful daughters flew in from Dallas to spend one week end and then my two sisters, one from El Paso, the other from California, came to see me.

Those days are always the hardest for me to spend alone.  That is when my hubby and I did everything around the house and garden, shopped, dined, went to the slots and tried out luck.  We also went out of town every few months, Dallas, El Paso, Albuquerque and Santa Fe.  We loved to explore and try new things, especially new restaurants.

The first week end my daughters and I spent talking, walking, laughing, eating, and shopping.  The days flew by so fast, before I knew it,  they were gone.  I endured the following days because I knew my sisters were coming .

They arrived and we also spent a lot of time reminiscing on the old days, even going back when we were young and still lived at home.  My older sister and I did a lot of things together, once we were so bored when our parents were not home that we took turns taking pictures of each other in different places and quirky poses.  So of course, we took the photo albums out and laughed at ourselves.

I am nine years older than my younger sister, so my thoughts of her were as a baby girl, who took my place in the house as supreme being.  I never envied her that position because I loved her with all my heart, and I still do.

Our conversations also centered on the antics of my beloved,  he was such a card.  We laughed and cried together at some of the comments he was always making.  This has served as a catharsis for my soul.  Speaking of him and remembering him are also a part of healing.   This is not always understood by a majority of people, who think that if they mention his name I will fall apart.  I tend to do this alone, in the privacy of my home.

My sisters and I also spent time in the kitchen, cooking, exchanging recipes, and  helpful hints on easier ways of doing things.  After all, we have a combined total of one hundred sixty seven years of married lives, which gives us quite an edge over newly weds.  Oh, we also talked about different ways of handling our husbands!

My older sister and her husband (who was wonderful by enduring our ceaseless talking) left two days ago, and I will have my younger sister for another week, so I am deliriously happy.  I know that she has an allergy to dog hair, and has been  supportive of my love for my pooch.  He, in turn, tries his best to get her to pet him, doing his one and only trick of sitting up and begging.  It hasn’t happened yet, but maybe on our trip back to El Paso

I will be visiting my children in Dallas the week after she leaves, so will still have plenty of company.

To paraphrase  from one of Dean Martin’s old songs, “How lucky can one gal be?”

Hasta la vista

Blog5

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

100_0601I found myself, for the first time since my beloved died, looking  forward to coming home.

It has been six months.  Each time I returned from a visit to children and relatives, I realized that I was entering the same empty house that I had left, and the pain hit.  It has not lessened, but just the joy of arriving at  the house which we so lovingly tended, helps to ease the eternal feeling of loss.

I gaze with pride at the newly painted deck, the freshly mowed lawn,  and think, this is My house.

Although I have been gearing myself towards selling, sometimes thinking of it gets overwhelming.  Never to enjoy again the feeling of self esteem over the additions that we both made, the office, storage room, the wall papering, painting, the covered wrap around deck, the parquet floor in the kitchen.  They all served to enhance and increase the value of our home.  Offsetting these thoughts are the lonely days and nights, in a village where I have loads of acquaintances, but very few friends.

I don’t know who was most upset , my pooch or I, after finding that deer had eaten all my flowers while we were away.  I consider these four legged creatures my friends, as long as they eat the wild flowers that grow all over the place, but not the little  plants which I so lovingly cared for and tended.  They were blooming profusely when I left, now there are only stumps left.

Today the culprit showed up again.  It was a stag with four point horns; he was getting ready to jump over the fence into our yard, when my great protector sensed him, and flew out in a rage, as far as the steps, from where he barked ferociously.

The stag only stared at him, and stood his ground,until I came out and told him to leave.  He dared me for a bit, but then finally turned around and left. I’m sure he’ll try to get back in and get the rest of the flowers, but we will be on guard.

My visit to our children in Dallas was wonderful, I got to see all of them and had the bonus of seeing my granddaughter, who lives in New York, fly in while I was there.  I met her boyfriend, a very nice young man whom I approve of.  They are talking marriage, and I certainly hope the best for them, for, as the song goes “I’ve had a love of my own”.

Believe it or not, after 30 years since my last bowling game, I went bowling again!  It was with my granddaughter and her sweetie, and we had a roaring good time.  When we went home my son in law informed me that he had a score of 72 at golf, and I retorted that score was our high  at bowling, so you can imagine what our game looked like.

The days are getting shorter, and the feeling of fall is in the air.  I don’t know whether to be happy or sad.

Hasta la vista


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