Saturday, January 31, 2009

How Do I Miss Thee? Let Me Count the Ways. III

I miss watching Dancing with the Stars with Margret.

I watched it this past season without Margret. I found it difficult at first, but then found myself turning to hubby and saying, "Margret would have liked that" about some dance move, or some costume detail, or some bit of shenanigans that went on. I think Margret might have been voting for Cody Linley, because he was a cast memeber on Hanna Montana, but I also think she would have clapped her hands and squeeeeed for some of the Cloris Leachman moments.

Her favorite star was Billy Ray Cyrus. She wanted me to cast my votes for him so intensely that I made a login for her on the DWTS website so she could have her OWN votes. Other seasons, she enjoyed watching; she had favorites, but that was the first season she had a preference strong enough that she wanted to vote! As a Hanna Montana fan, Margret got to see Billy Ray with his daughter on the Disney Channel's programming, but there he was, learning how to do ballroom dancing.

Husband watched DWTS with us, too. He and I tried to guess what the judges scores would be before they gave them. He was right a surprising number of times, too, more often than I was certainly. We also tried to guess at the beginning of the results show which couple was going to be eliminated. Margret never wanted to join in that guessing session.

When we watched tv together, Margret often sat between my feet, as I sat in a chair. I'm not sure how that habit got started, but it did. Then too, it gets chilly down by the tv, so I would have an afghan wrapped around me, and she would wrap one around her. She kept my feet warm, I kept her afghan/shawl from sliding away. It was a companionable feeling.

In fact I miss watching any tv show with Margret. She clapped her hands, laughed out loud, commented on the action, got up and walked away or muted the sound during the food commercials "because they make me hungry when I'm not". Smart lady.

Friday, January 30, 2009

How Do I Miss Thee? Let Me Count the Ways. II

I miss getting my back scratched and rubbed.

Margret would come up behind me while I was sitting at the computer, or at the table reading, and scratch my back without being asked to do so. She had a great sense of where I liked having my back scratched, so the requests "Up a little," "Over to the left a bit," were fairly minimal.

Sometimes when I was tired and achy, I would say, "Margret, would you rub my shoulders please?" and she would come over and do it. She usually started rubbing with just one hand, and that was pretty good. I'd ask her to use both hands, and she'd usually oblige me. I could request that she concentrate on my neck, or work her way down my back, and she did. For someone who wasn't formally trained, and not working professionally as a masseuse, she was very good.

I showed all my daughters how to rub backs to my taste when they were little, and I was working as an upholsterer who got aches in my back and shoulders rather often. C still twits me about paying them a quarter to rub my back.

The backrubs were not a one way street. I rubbed her back too. I rubbed her back to comfort her when she was unhappy. I rubbed her back when she was sick, because it seemed to make her feel better. Sometimes when I was hugging her, I would add a little massage up and down next to her spine, and she liked that. She didn't ask for a back rub very often, mostly I volunteered to do it, or put my hand on her shoulder and started a massage. If she turned so I had easier access, I continued, with both hands.

The last few days before she went to the hospital for the last time she asked me to rub her back. She said her lower back hurt, and that the rubbing helped.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

How Do I Miss Thee? Let Me Count the Ways. I

I miss Margret hugs.

When someone offers me a hug these days, I almost never turn them down. I can always use the hugs.

I don't get nearly so many hugs now, because that was one of the things Margret did: she hugged. She hugged me, she hugged other family and she hugged her friends. She liked being hugged as well as giving out the hugs.

She'd hug me in the morning, before she left for her program. She'd hug me when she got back, too, and other random times during the day.

I got special extra hugs when I tucked her into bed at night, too.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Still Amazed

It still amazes me how fast 6 months passes, and how slowly it goes, all at the same time.

There are a lot of good days, but there are an abundance of moments where something reaches out and touches me, and starts the tears. Quiet tears, and usually only a few, as I think of yet another thing I won't be sharing with Margret.

Some of the memories even bring a smile, and sometimes a chuckle, as this photo of Margret going GRRRR!!! and telling me she wanted to strangle me for taking her picture after wrapping her up to to the tip of her nose.

It was really cold out, and we had only recently realized how much breathing very cold air affected her oxygen saturations, and her feeling of well being. She was used to being bundled up warm, but not so much around her face and head, just a quick wrap up, and done.

It took several trials before we got the scarf high enough to suit me that she would be breathing through it, and low enough to suit her that she could see over it. She hated the amount of time I spent fussing to make sure it was right, but she appreciated that I wanted her to be comfortable.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Six Month Anniversary

Yesterday I was terribly out of sorts, and could not go to sleep last night for the disturbing visions of Margret in the hospital that were dancing in my head. I ended up sitting reading, legs wrapped in a sleeping bag and lap robe around my shoulders, all night.

As the first tentative rays of sunlight explored my front window, it dawned on me that this is the six month anniversary of her death.

In my head I've been composing something I call, How Do I Miss Thee? Let Me Count The Ways, but I can't get it to shift from inside my head to paper or file. *sigh* One of these days I'll get it to make the transition.

I've been processing feelings about the holidays for a while now, and still working on it.

The drive to see family for Thanksgiving was peculiar, both going and returning home. I kept having little moments of panic that I had forgotten to pack something extremely important. The first time or two, I could not pin it down; I went over a mental list of my packed items and could not see anything missing. Another time when it happened, I glanced in the mirror to see how Margret was doing, and realized it was herself I was missing. Understanding did not banish the moments, but they were lessened.

Travel at Christmas I only had one or two such moments, and only on the way there.

During both holidays, it was wonderful seeing family again, and spending a little time together.

On a very much more mundane note, winter has set in. We have cold and snow, and in such weather I quite prefer the indoors. I've been reading books by Sharyn McCrumb, both the Ballad novels and a few of her Elizabeth MacPherson stories, from the public library.