Tag Archive | Parent

To My Sister

We lost one of our family members yesterday…

My sister’s husband

He came into her life… I would say… in the perfect moment

She had lost her first husband through death… brain tumor/heart… leaving her and her six children to be on their own… k2473211

She was not alone… many family members embraced these kids and her…

Loving them with all of their heart…

They seemed to become part of my own …

My second little familyk1587726

Four girls… two boys… ranging in ages… I’m guessing here… from one in the Marines… so maybe 19… no, there were two already married… so maybe 20 or so… to one in elementary school… so maybe 5… maybe not in school yet…

So you see… so young… to have a daddy taken away…

But, my sister is a strong woman…

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Working… making ends meet… staying in touch with her family and her Bert’s family…

Curtis came into her life with a grin… and a slight limp of a leg…

And we knew he had been smitten!… He adored her!

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and took on the responsibility of being a Dad as best he could with rebellious teens and a woman who had lost the love of her life… her first husband…

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Carolyn met Curtis  at a Parent’s Without Partners dance… They were held weekly… and at that time… it was just to get out and be around others her age…

They were married after about of a year of on again… off again…

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This would be a big decision on her part to make …

With six children… and a new man in her life…

Her mind was twirling…x25013794

But, they married… at one of her daughter’s homes… on Valentine’s Day

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Life has had so many directions… illnesses…kids…moving to a different home twice… his children accepting her…

But, it seemed their love began to grow more and more…

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The kids came to acceptt him as their Dad… and the grandchildren that came.. knew only him as their Papa

They clung to him… and loved him… with all of their being…

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Curtis has been a very sick man for most of their marriage…

but, my sister has tended to his every need…

He has had to have an amputation of a leg

heart trouble…and lately a lung disease and cancer

There are no words to describe all she has had to do…

A strong woman… an understatement for sure…

There will be no regrets that she did her best by both husbands…

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As a sister… we have talked much… we can get the day going through our conversations… no matter how hard!

As he lay dying in their home… she was still in charge

making arrangements that had to be completed… talking to everyone who came in to say good-bye…k9934085

Talking to Hospice help as they arrived…

He went quickly… surrounded by much love… and his wife… who had become his life

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Peace to you Curtis in your new life in Heaven

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and peace to you my sister… as you pull it up again… and become yourself again…

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Love,

Your Sister Marilyn

Daily Prompt: Say Your Name

Write about your first name: Are you named after someone or something? Are there any stories or associations attached to it? If you had the choice, would you rename yourself?

Photographers, show us  YOU.

I was named Marilyn Kay… k6575224

I’ve heard a few stories about how my name was chosen…dyi0003

I was born on the same daysame hospitalrco0036 … of another little girl cousin…

I was born 3 hours before her… k4190806

From what I hear my Dad was not so good at watching anything to do with birthsFainting… right out! Out_Cold

Mom and my bigger sister from what I hear thought a neighbor’s great-niece was the cutest little girlk12843214 … and my sisterwho can be pretty persistentbegged Mom to name me Marilyn… this little girl’s name…

My sister’s name being Carolyn… made our names sound like twin names… maybe there was something to that too…x19209803

Then… my oldest brother who was in the Coast Guard 75px-US-CoastGuard-Seal_svg… sent my Mom a letter szo0433 wanting me to be called Donna Kay… if I hadn’t already been named… From what he says… a girlfriend at the time and of course he thought that was a beautiful name

Mom compromised and “Marilyn” stayed and “Kay” was added… making them both happy…

Evidently my birth was a little special… since Mom was 40 and Dad 41… and my sister’s and brother’s were all older… My sister being 6 years older… when I was born…

Surprise! 15477-39dgk8410538

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Two Years old (1951) … taken at Renfro Valley… Kentucky’s Country Music Capital in Eastern KY

Daily Prompt: Childhood Revisited

Sure, you turned out pretty good, but is there anything you wish had been different about your childhood? If you have kids, is there anything you wish were different for them?

I have always wished I would have went to collegek13870951

My parents didn’t go and really very few of our family did… until my generation had children

Most all of our children have gone to college… and their children will absolutely go…

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I talked about it to my Mom… but, the thought of the unknown was pretty much not discussed… dougla0028s

There was the expense… for one thing… but, compared to today… it was nothing…sps0438

We all were to either get married have kids… and maybe work

Work meaning a trade of some kind… factory x17066401child care… elderly care… cook… waitress k9592294 … retail, etc. …

I was fortunate to get hired and work at the Telephone Company (Bell South) as a Long Distance Operator… and then an Information Operatorsfo0464

Just a test was required… as I remember… of about 2-3 pages… Basic common sense… reading… writing… math skills…u16545704

Positions that could be taught by others who had experience

After six years I had married k8117625 and had two sonsk5105796 … I felt they needed me at home and decided being a stay at home Mom would be my full-time job

Not a regret… but, I wanted more!

I wanted to either be a Teacher  sfo0159 or do something with Artk8413105

and to my amazementwithout college… I obtained a job in the Public School System after the boys went to school…

I kept a job as a Teacher Assistant with Special Education Students k0662770 … for 30+ years… being able to use my art skills… and received my full retirement

Yes, I feel my life turned out pretty good… but, the knowledge I have now… feeling I could have learned so much car0030 and the career I could have had… haunts me still… u15284580

Daily Prompt: All Grown Up / The Daily Post

When was the first time you really felt like a grown up (if ever)?

A grown up…

Finishing High School???… u16964125 NO, I was still making some pretty bad decisions at that time…

Turning 21???…  u15076242 No, I was still not feeling like it!

Getting that first job???… k5376716 Maybe a little… Had my own paycheck… Opened up an account in my name… maybe a taste…

Maybe getting married???… k8660880 A little… but, at that time my new husband left for Viet Nam 1 month afterwards… I still lived at home…Not feeling very grown up…

Husband home???…  k9388336  k10005022later suffering from PTSD… Starting new life with another human being… knowing it was for life as far as I was concerned… Yes, getting there…

Having first apartment???…  pbu0707 Paying bills… buying groceries… keeping a car running… working… budgeting… Maybe a little more grown up feeling…

Buying first home???… k8503864 More responsibilty…managing techniques starting to kick in…Grown-up?… maybe a little more…

Having children???… k5915275 k11076809 Had no clue what all that involved… Changed me the most …Grown-up??? not all of the way… More like a child learning to raise a child… and the responsibility was overwhelming at times…

Oh, another child???…  KID04020 Loved them to pieces…but, grown-up… says maturity to me… and I was still learning… Instead of parenting… I played with my kids… Good or bad?… maybe OK… but, still didn’t feel like a grown-up… That was my parents role…u14194231 Still…not mine!… More words than anything…

Finally I felt grown-up!…

Son diagnosed with bi-polar disorder

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My life was to change forever and I had better start growing up!…

Doctors…Therapists…Advice…Heartache…Yes…I was growing up…

My Mom at 90 years old moves in with us…k5256516 and with a son with his mood swings… I had no idea what was going to happen…

More growing up… No choice!

Actually during this time I matured the most… Left to make decisions… for both an aging Mother and a son who suffered with his illness…

Evidently the combination became a God-send…

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My son became a partial care-giver to my Mom as I had to work… Given responsibility… he matured and started to grow up too…

After 5 years… Mom moves into nursing home… Boy… had I grown up…

Three more years of every other night… going to nursing home to put Mom to bed and visit after working all day… plus other times of course… Yes, I had grown up…

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I think the real awakening moment that I was grown-up… was when I finally started taking up for myself and came into my own

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I became ME… a grown up who could make decisions… say YES or No when I needed to… and became a mentor of sorts… I felt I was worthy… loved and understood… I began to really like the person I had become…

I was grown up!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Home

In a new post specifically created for this challenge, share a picture that evokes HOME for you…

My Mom and Dad created a home full of love… family and friends…

A place we felt safe in…

A place we liked to be…

A place we wanted to come back to…

A place we knew was kept clean

A place we knew would have good food…

A place we could bring our friends to…

A place to play

A place to talk

A place to learn lessons

A place to explore

Yes… That’s what I think HOME is…

My Home was to be duplicated but, with my touch

It would take both my husband and myself to fulfill this task…

I fill my home with things I like…

and after looking around…

I found this is what my Home depicts…

A love for Family!

 

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Grandkids photos in album…

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Photo Wall in my computer room…

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A photo of my dog I had for 16 years…”Sugar”… and still like to remember her…

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Grandkids in different stages…

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I even have them on my computer screen… They make me smile and feel good every day!

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Early years… later years…

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My oldest Granddaughter and the little chicken she gave so many years ago…

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Even a friend knew where my HOME was… as she gave me this for a present one time…

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Favorite photo… Great ages for all!

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My husband Bobby…I call him mine… A happy day…

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Kids with their Uncle… I know how much they love him…

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My youngest son and wife…  A great combo!

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My son…”Daddy with his girls”

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and finally my Jill… She makes our Home…

by being her typical “cat self”…

and loves us unconditionally as we do her!

It’s My Birthday!…and my son’s and my cousin’s…

Memory…

It’s 9:00 am in the morning…

and I have already received 10 messages

wishing me a “Happy Birthday” k9066971

Is that not the most wonderful feeling!…

I’ve actually had many messages… calls k8705702 … etc. … this past week…

To be remembered is the best gift anyone could give me…

Presents are nice…

Cards are great…

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but, heartfelt words… mean so much…

In a few minutes I will be calling my baby boy39 years old today also!…

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What a present  k0964640 he was… and a joy now!…

My cousin will be called later in the morning…

We share our birthday  k4394957 also…

I think that has really made us have a special bond

What does this day have in store?…

I really don’t know…

We’ve been out to eat already with my son/family…

So it might be just a stay at home day… Cold here in the Bluegrass State…

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But, whatever comes… I will be grateful and feel blessed for another year!

Oh, my!…  My Bobby just surprised me with these beautiful flowers and a card… What a day!… and it’s only 9:44am…

and my son just called

and my oldest Granddaughter texted me…We have a date for us to get a “little” tatoo together… it’s “our” thing!

What a wonderful day!

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How I Grew Up…

Memory…

This is copied from an email I received from a friend… It touched me in that it described how I grew up… Maybe you will find similarities too…

I grew up with practical parents. A mother, who washed aluminum foil after she cooked in it, then reused it. She was the original recycle queen, before they had a name for it… ( Mom actually did this… even the styrofoam ones)… A father who was happier getting old shoes  fixed than buying new ones. ( I remember riding with him to the shoe repair man to get new soles put on his shoes up at a little shopping center not too far from our house)…

Their marriage was good, their dreams focused. (Both of my parents had been married before… Mom bringing two children into the marriage… and then my parents having us 3 additional children…We were all treated pretty equal…and we knew “our” parents loved us)… Their best friends lived barely a wave away. ( Even though we lived in the county on eight acres of land  my Dad had bought when he came out of the service… NAVY… we knew everyone along the road from one end to the other  )…

I can see them now, Dad in trousers, dress shirt and a hat ( I mainly picture my Dad in white overalls…a painter’s hat…and carrying his lunch box… He was a wallpaper hanger  )…and Mom in a house dress, lawn mower in one hand , and dish-towel in the other. (That describes my Mom to a tee… Printed house dresses… raising chickens …cooking like no one else could… cutting the grass… raising veggies and flowers)… It was the time for fixing things. A curtain rod, the kitchen radio, screen door, the oven door, the hem in a dress. ( Mom as well as Dad could repair about anything… I just told my husband today… I could repair the screen  in some windows we have… I’ve done it before… learning from Mom and Dad)… Things we keep. Dads with paint brushes, hammer, digging in the garden. ( Dad built two homes for us… with his own two hands and little help… I can’t remember him saying he couldn’t do anything!… He always tried! … His tools were kept in good shape… always put back where they belonged… Hammers… saws… nails… paint… brushes… You name it… and he had it!) Coming home tired after working long hours!… ( I remember meeting my Dad at his truck… carrying in his lunch box … and him kidding me in some way about whether I was a “baggy pants” or a “pesticator”… I always answered “pesticator”… No way was I a baggy pants!

It was a way of life, and sometimes it made me crazy … all that re-fixing, eating, renewing, I wanted just once to be wasteful. Waste meant affluence. Throwing things away meant you knew there’d always be more.
( I swore I would use as much water as I wanted to when I grew up!… We had to have water delivered in a big truck and put in a cistern… because we lived so far out in the county… so water was used sparingly… And I have to say… I do water my flowers… let the water run over my feet and legs while I’m washing things down after cutting grass … take a long bath with the tub filled up with bubbles and I let my Grandkids play with the water hose when they are over)…

But then my mother died, and on that clear summer’s night, in the warmth of the hospital room, I was struck with the pain of learning that sometimes there isn’t any more. ( My Mom died in January… winter… at the age of 98… She was the next to last of a line of wonderful strong women… Only a sister left when she passed out of 12 children… She had lived with me for 5 years until at age 93 she fell and broke her hip… Nursing home after that with my sister and I taking turns… every night putting her to bed) …Then my father died… all the help he gave, helping fix things will never be again! ( My Dad had passed 19 years before my Mom of a heart attack  … Only 79… but, had lived a rich full life… even at that… The funeral home was so full… that we were elbow to elbow… an awesome sight… and the love and memories flowing was just a pull at the heart! and yes… I wished for him many times for advice and his helping hand )… 

Sometimes, what we care about most gets all used up and goes away too soon…. never to return. So, while we have it… it’s best we love it …. And care for it… And fix it when it’s broken… And heal it when it’s sick… It’s best to overlook the small things! (We always tried to make up if there were differences of opinions … we learned that early in life… and I’m sure it was from our parents)

This is true for marriage … and old cars … and children with bad report cards … and dogs with bad hips… and aging parents… and grandparents. We keep them because they are worth it, because we are worth it. ( My husband and I have been married 43 years… have two lovings sons…and three wonderful grandchildren… No!…it’s not been a perfect life… but, we loved hard… said we were sorry  many times… gave hugs and kisses to take the hurts away… helped each other get through what hardships we had to face)… Some things we keep. Like a best friend that moved away or a classmate we grew up with. ( I’m having my 45th High School Class Reunion in October… and thank goodness I stay in touch with quite a few… Of course there’s been many other friends… from work… from meetings I attend… from old neighborhoods…and some family members I feel are friends also)…

There are just some things that make life important, like people we know who are special… And so, we keep them close! ( I have these type of people in my life… aren’t I lucky!) …

I received this from someone who thinks I am a “keeper”… so I’m blogging  this to people I think of in the same way… Now it’s your turn to send this to those people that are “keepers” in your life.

Good friends are like stars  …. You don’t always see them, but you know they are always there. Keep them close!

“Life In Motion”

Do you know people who just can’t wait? They can’t wait to grow up …they can’t wait to drive a car …they can’t wait to get out of school …they can’t wait to get married They can’t wait to have kids…They can’t wait to have a house …They can’t wait to see their children grown…They can’t wait until they retireWHOA!…I say…slow down!  You think you have a lifetime to do all you want to do…Well, a lifetime can be minutes , hours , days or just a few years…Yes, some will live to be very old with many years behind them…but, I ‘ll bet they will still say, “It was not long enough!”Some people have such wonderful goals that they set for themselves…and achieve it …Some have the goals and never obtain them …Some know exactly what profession they want …Some never know what they want to do …Some want families …Some love being on their own Some people work all their lives and some seem to play their lives away …I’ve seen some people with such talents…some using them to their full extent and others seeming to waste them…or don’t even think they have any…I see people ruin relationships …and others wanting to have someone to care for them…and never meeting  that special one…I see people with lots of money …yet, not happy …I see others that have nothing …and are rich beyond belief …What I am seeing…is “Life In Motion”  …Just don’t rush it…It moves away from us fast enough! 

“My Kids!”

My kids felt the same emotions as all of us…Wanting things to move but, not as quickly as most … I never heard any of them really talking about marriage …living without Mom, Dad or brothers/sisters…having children of their own…Their futures were only a few years ahead at the most…mostly…cars , girlfriends/boyfriends , family, clothes , hairdos, games , food  and school…some talked of working…but, only a few…It seemed most of our kids lived just for the presentSchool…People were important… Some activities at school or birthday parties… The boys liked any kind of sports … and they did notice the girls…The girls were thinking of their hair, makeup, fingernail polish, books, drawing, movies, pets and occasionally a cute boy … I liked what I saw in our kids… Their lives were in motion but, they were waiting for things … moving a little slower  …they seemed to want to enjoy each moment!

“Little Red House”

As I was sitting outside I observed our “Bird Couple”My cousin had given my husband a very pretty red wood bird house for Christmas a couple of years ago…It seemed to be handmade and great care had been taken in finishing it…It was very solid and fairly big…That Spring after Christmas my husband hung it high on the side of one of our trees… He didn’t want it too close to the house ( too noisy )…wanted it in view of where we sit outside ( we could watch the birds if they decided to use it )…and up high enough to keep most anything but, birds from getting into it…Last summer we thought we had birds in it…but, actually our imaginations seem to have gotten the best of us…We thought we saw little heads popping out of the hole …but, No birds…when we looked closer…This Spring is a different story…our “Bird Couple” have moved in …it’s been over a month or more…We actually do see little heads popping up and out of the hole in the front of the little red house…We also see Momma and Daddy going in and out frequently with what seems to be a little of this and a little of that…I guess some sort of insects or worms …What is so neat is the way they take turns…Momma bird flies off while the Daddy is inside with the babies…and when she returns …he comes out and flies off while she goes inside to stay with the babies and feed them what she has found…I love the thought that this little couple are sharing their parenting duties …I love that they looked around and picked our little red house  to begin a family in…They have had a visitor…Mr.Squirrel  …He tried so hard to see inside their home…No Way!…said, Momma and Daddy…They flew at him and peeped at him loudly … He has not returned…

“My Kids!”…

If birds can take care of their young as well as my “Little Couple” does …then I think we can all take a lesson from them and do the same…I wish at times some of our kid’s parents would have watched the birds more …Maybe then our kids would have had a pretty little house  with a yard, trees and people close by to look after them…maybe then they would have had both parents living with them …learning only what a Dad can teach and what a Mom can give …Maybe then both parents would share the responsibilities of raising a child…where one doesn’t get so tired of doing it all…Maybe then the child would know when they got home there would be food to eat  and love to keep them warm…and then our kids would have no fear in letting their wings unfold, stretch out and fly