Sunday, August 31, 2008


Derek hugged Nina a little longer and then took her shoulders in his big hands. He stared down at her and saw her mother in her eyes. He fought back the tears that reminded him how much he was still in love with Carrie Ann.
"Nina, why did you come here!!? Don't you know how dangerous this can be for you!? Everytime you do this, you take a chance of never coming back. I had hoped your mother would have told you this."
"I had to come daddy... she is in trouble."
"What did she do that she needed to go back to damn near before she and I were born?"
"She goes back daddy because..."
He saw the tears in her eyes. How many times had he wiped the tears from her mothers eyes. She would be crying many times when he would come home after a long day at work. When he would ask her why, she always said the same thing.
"Because I miss you! Because your daughter cried herself to sleep again! Because all I wanted was you and Nina. And all I have is Nina."
He could hear her words so clearly in his mind. He wanted them to never want or need for anything should something happen to him. He thought that his hours and hours of dedication to making money to give them a better life would be understood, appreciated.He never thought she would take his Nina from him and leave.
"She goes back why, Nina? Tell me why she chances everything to go back to a place she has never been before?"
"She does it to try and save hers and your marriage daddy. She is trying to find a way to bring you back and lock us in a time that you would not have to work so hard to give us what you wanted us to have. She does this for us, Daddy."
Derek just stared at his daughter. He could feel tears streaming down his face. He had given all he had and lost her. Now she was giving all she had to keep him. he hugged Nina once again, sobbing into his little girls shoulder. He loved them more than he loved his own life. They were his life. They truly always had been.
She walked into the bakery as if she had been there a million times. The woman behind the counter watched her as she entered. She was a stout woman with a huge beehive hairdo that seemed out of date to Carrie Ann. She knew her in an instant, although by the time Carrie Ann could remember her, this woman was frail and grey haired. She looked at her and smiled softly.
"May I help you, young lady?" Her voice so startled carrie that she almost fell backwards against a coat rack. She had not heard that voice in fifteen years. Her grandmother had raised her since her mother walked away from her when she was only five. She was a kind woman,but strict with her rules for Carrie. Her strictest of all was "no Fabric."
"Your mother did it once to often and now she is gone to us forever. You must not use this gift ever, Carrie Ann." Carrie knew her grandmother only told her this story to help her not hurt so much. Carrie knew her mother had not traveled to many times. She watched her through a crack in the door as her mother packed her suitcase and without even a kiss goodbye, had walked out the front door and left with a man. Not too many Fabric moves... too many men.
"Miss, can I help you find something?" Carrie was brought back to the present, or whatever time this could be called, by her grandmothers voice.
"I am sorry. I was day dreaming I suppose. I am looking for a clock. Not just a clock really. It was a clock that was made in this time that was special."
Her grandmother looked at her through squinted eyes. Carrie realized what she had just said to this lady. "What I mean to say is that I was told it was made by a clock-maker by the name of Rawlings. A friend told me you carry his works."
Her grandmother , still looking at her with question in her eyes, nodded. "Yes I carry his clocks here. But few people know that and fewer ask for him by name. Might I ask what your interest in his clocks could be?"
Carrie could feel her palms starting to sweat. The Fabric, the fabric is going to tear, is all she could think of. She had to be so very careful if she was to get back out of this time. One tiny rip and she would be here for the rest of her life. No more Nina and no chance to ever have her Derek back in her arms again. God, why had she ever gone away? What was she trying to prove to him? Did she just expect him to follow her, run out and stop her from going? She had slipped out while he was working. She had made certain he couldn't ask her to stay then. If he had, she knew she could not have gone. The lesson she wanted to teach him about working so much had slapped her right in the face. Derek had NOT come to stop her nor did he beg her to come home. He simply told her he would love her until the last stars in heaven had gone out. He promised to keep her and Nina always well taken care of. And he told her that he would take her back if ever she wanted to be with him. But she didn't want that. Oh no, this stubborn girl insisted in her heart that HE be the one to come to her.
"I need the clock to set time right. It is the only way I have of going back to an exact time. A moment when I walked out on a man without giving him a chance to ask me to stay. In just a few hours, Evel Knievel is going to make a jump on his bike. He will fail. His bike will catch on a time rif and fall to the ground. At that exact moment, I have to set the alarm to go off. It will take me back... take us back to the moment I am looking for. I need that clock maam. Please, please help me."
Her tears poured down her face and she sobbed uncontrolably. Had her words just sentenced her to life here, in 1967? Had she just sealed her own fate because of the love she had for Derek and Nina? How could she even be sure that Derek and her Nina were even here in this time era? She had to believe that they were. Her sobbing seemed never to stop. Her grandmother came around to the front of the counter. She took Carrie in her large arms and held her tight. She rocked her gently as she had done after Carrie's mother had left her. And she cried softly with Carrie, just as she had done so many years ago.
"Now, now, My beautiful Carrie Ann. We will fix this. You just let grammie help."
Carrie pulled away from her grandmothers arms. She looked at her through eyes that were huge as saucers. Her whole body trembled as the voice echoed through Carrie's mind. "Oh dear God... you know me. What have I done this time? What have I done!????"

Saturday, August 30, 2008


The car came over the last hill and was approaching fast. Derek stepped onto the shoulder of the road, anticipating the swerve towards him. As the sun moved across the chrome of the front bumper, Derek sheilded his eyes with a hand to his forehead. He could see the car clearly now. Confusion slipped into his mind as he looked at the car. A relic, he thought. No. Something more. This car seemed completely out of place and yet exactly where it belonged. The Chevy was almost an indigo blue. The 1965 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 396 was beautiful as it slowed down to stop. The window came down as it came to a stop beside Derek. The most beautiful brunnette appeared in it's stead. Her eyes were so dark they looked like coal. Her long hair hung past her shoulders. He thought of Katherine Ross, the actress from the 60's.
"Well stud, she has gone and done it again. This time, she doesn't know if she can get back or not."
Derek stared at this beauty as she spoke. The voice was even that of Ms. Ross. He half expected Sam Elliot to suddenly appear beside her. "Are you really...?"
"Of course I am, young man. She has stepped into a time that doesn't have the needed, shall we say, elements to get back home to your daughter."
"Damn her! Why does she insist on doing this!? Did she leave Nina alone in our time?"
"Yes, but Nina went searching for her."
"What are you talking about? Nina doesn't travel."
"Derek, you have been gone a while. Your little Nina isn't the same as when you left her."
"I didn't leave her!!! Her mother took her from me! We have to find her, bring her back somehow."
"It looks as if you and I will be going on a little trip."
Derek threw his duffle bag in the back seat and climbed into the passenger seat. The car was moving almost before he got his door shut. He looked at this image of Katherine sitting next to him. He reached out to touch her face.
"You know you aren't allowed to do that Derek. It would set the time fabric on fire and we don't want that, now do we?"
"Why doesn't me getting in the car hurt the fabric?"
"How long has it been since you crossed the fabric?"
"Too long, obviously. Where are we going to?"
"Over the next hill, everything you remember will be gone for a time. We will roll down the hill into Las Vegas and it will be the Las Vegas of 1967. We will arrive as Evel Knievel is attempting his jump at the Palace."
"Why then?" She said nothing at all.She simply drove. "I said why then!?!!" Still she did not answer him. She pulled into the parking lot of the Caesars Palace, and stopped the car.
"This is where you and I part ways, Derek. You must find Carrie Ann and bring her back to your time. If you can not, then you will both be stuck in this time forever. I wish you good luck."
Derek stepped out of the car, removed his duffle bag and the car sped away. There he stood, at the doorway to one of the largest Casino's ever to grace Las Vegas.He thought about what Katherine had said about his little Nina. True enough, time had gone by and he had missed some of Nina's growing but surely Carrie would have told him that Nina could now move through time. This was huge and he should have been told about this. He and Carrie had traveled through the fabric many times. They had done it mostly because they could. But now and then they would travel to retrieve an item they needed for their collections. He had given it up after Nina was born and never used it again. Why they could travel, he never knew. He only knew that Carrie was addicted to it and that she would pass through the fabric still, just because she could. He also knew that each time you traveled, you became more part of the time era you had gone to.
Derek heard the voice long before he saw her. He smiled and turned to see his daughter, running to him, her eyes filled with tears and her arms spread wide open to greet him. "Daddy, you came. I knew you would. You always come to me when I need you the most. I love you Daddy. We have to save mom."
"We will, little angel. I promise you, we will."

Friday, August 29, 2008

A little something New...

Today, I am going to try something a little different. Not something really new to blogs, as I have seen others do this before. Something a bit new for me though. I thought that perhaps for the next few days or so, I might write a short story for you. I have no idea what it will be about. I have no beginning, no ending and no clue where it will take me. This is how I write all of my novels also. We will be surprised together. So if you will, come along with me on a journey. Let's see where it will take us. Always, Darrel

Ten miles, the sign had said. He was certain he had walked much further than that by now. Two cars had passed him in the last hour and a half. One slowed as if to pick him up, speeding away as he reached for the door. The second car was filled with high school kids out for a joy ride. They had simply swerved to try and hit him. Brushing the dust off of himself, he ruffled his long black hair to make sure he had no sand fleas hiding inside. If he had cut his hair before leaving Dayton, maybe, just maybe he would have been picked up by now.
Derek Sewald thought about the events that had started him on this trek across the country. He had given Mosh Enterprise the best part of his twenties. A skit in the service and straight to them, manufacturing steel rods for buildings was all he knew. It had been tough work, sometimes his arms would ache from a long days work, but it was honest work. His arms were toned like the hardened steel he worked with and his chest taught as a Marines bed skirt. With baby blues to boot, he was every woman's dream and every mans nightmare.
After ten years of long hard work, they had simply said they didn't need him anymore. Jobs were failing and work was hard to find. He had tried his hand at a few other jobs, saw mills that went under, a cabbie for a time. He even flipped burgers for a while. An honest enough job and no less hot and sweaty than his steel working days, but not something he could hold with. He woke one morning, eleven days ago, packed what he considered needed items and shucked the rest into the green bin behind his apartment. The best of his twenties and it all fit in a Marine duffle bag and a back-pack. Not much to show for so much sweat and muscle pain. He set out in the early dawn and never looked back.
He saw the car coming over the hill. It was miles away when the sun first reflected from the Chrome on the fender. Dust swirls in the sky are all that told him it was still coming when it dipped behind the hills. Were the high school kids coming back for a second try at hitting him? Maybe some old farmer bringing his things to some far away town. He didn't much care really. It was coming towards him which translated into, going the wrong direction for him.
She came rushing back to his thoughts. He never really stopped thinking about her. He knew all of the reasons her mother had taken her away from him. He was a good father but a poor husband. He worked hard so they had it all, but somewhere in the mix of things, he had left her mother lonely one too many times. Her last letter to him came just as he was being told he needed to move on. He had saved no money as all he made went to Carrie Ann Pisk so she could care for Nina. She hadn't asked for any of it. He simply felt it was hers to have. Eleven years old now, she had her daddies dreams and her mothers ambitions. A poor mix that would leave her where he was today. Alone and regretful. Wishing he had done more with their lives than worked to live.
The letter was short and left him with nothing more than worry and a feeling of needing to reach her soon. "Daddy, she has done it again. This time I fear she is in too deep to get out. She still loves you, I know she does. Please come help us. She would kill me if she knew I had written you. I need you Daddy... We need you. Love your little Nina." What else could he do. His daughter needed him.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Things I know about Unprovoked tears...

Tears... not a new word or even a subject I have not written about before.I wrote about tears in the night and I have written about tears from a man and how they are viewed. This morning, as I sat here going through my mail, doing surveys, answering mail that had sat way too long, it happened. The very reason I am writing right now. As I looked at my friend list, I felt a sadness trying to reach out and take me. I didn't have a clue why nor even where it came from. Hell, being Bipolar and half nuts sometimes, I shrugged it off to a little of everything. I even thought that maybe, just maybe it was an after feeling of having had so much fun vacationing and then coming home to such silence. Anyone of them would work, I am sure.
But this was something sort of new for me. An event, maybe we can call it that took me by surprise. I could feel the tears begin to slip down my cheek. I wanted to fight it and at the same time, something inside of me wanted it, perhaps more needed it. I began to write feverishly and try to avoid what felt like it could be huge. I heard all the things that I have seen in writing concerning my blogs. "Too much Sheila", "You seem so lost" and all the other words that rushed back into my head.
I needed so to talk and yet wanted to be silent at the same time. I was afraid that if I talked it would come so alive inside and outside of me.
I opened this site and for the first time in soooo long, I had 2 visitors. Two from 75 in day or two. I wondered if perhaps my writings were not reaching out to hearts and souls now. Had a lost the passion in writing? Had something become quiet inside without me seeing it? I didn't think so. What were these tears for? Where did they come from? Why did numbers for a day bother me so? I had friends that would have gladly talked to me. They always offer if I need an ear. Such wonderful friends and such blessings from heaven for me. A few that are near my heart said hi, one that is deeply dear to me... not available to talk. It just added to the tears. Silent, unprovoked tears that truly came from no-where and every-where.
I remember times in Sheila and my marriage, when I would find her crying alone. I would cuddle her and love her and ask her why she cried. What had i done to bring such sad tears from this woman I loved so much? Her answer was given to me in a gentle hug and soft kiss. A whisper that told me I had done nothing. She said she simply needed to cry. Perhaps, maybe I also just needed to cry. It made no sense to me when Sheila said it, but I excepted it. It makes no sense to me that I sit here, exposing myself, making my heart and soul vulnerable to anyones thoughts or writing. And yet... here I sit, tears flowing, feeling more alone than I have felt in forever. Feeling as if I am facing this Abyss alone. Wishing so mnay things had been different, knowing I can not change any of the past. Knowledgable in the fact that I can only change my future. A deep rooted learning that tells me that no one can have control over my heart or my soul, my very life,unless I myeslf give that power to them.
Perhaps in all of the sobbing, there was a message, a lesson that I needed to see. We say we need to clear eyes if we are to focus and fix issues. I wonder niow if in fact, we need tear filled eyes to cleanse our soul. Cleansed by the tears that have come, unprovoked but a little bit ordained by one so much bigger and so much more wise than me. I think when the tears do pass that I may have a better understanding of their importance in living and seeing clearer. I don't truly know. I only know the tears are warm and cascade down my face faster than I can stop them. they are so very real and why I wanted to share this with you, I don't know. Will more than 2 actually read this and feel the sadness of my soul? I don't know the answer to the question racing through my head. I dont know where these tears originated mentally nor where they will take me today. I will mow the lawn and do some laundry and keep myself busy, perhaps warding off what promises to be a heavy Low for me.
Unprovoked tears? Maybe, or maybe not. My subconsious knows that answer I am sure. Alone in a crowded world, surrounded by friends and loved ones. Wanting to be loved and felt by everyone yet feeling dis-connected inside my very being.Have you felt this sadness, this lonliness that threatens to take me down today? I wonder... Hugsss to the world and Hugsssssss, to me too...Always, Darrel........ Forgive me for this write because I know "I" will not. Darrel

Friday, August 22, 2008

things I know about family/friends...

This morning I want to write about the friends that become family. Not by marriage or any legal matter. I am talking about friends that through your heart and their love and caring, become as much and sometimes even more family than your own family. They touch your heart and soul in wonderful way and when you are with them, they ARE family.
The last four days, my daughter and I spent with her best friend and her family. What a fantastic blessing they were. AS most know that read my writings, I am severely Bipolar and Turrets. I don't like being away from the safe place that my home and surroundings are for me. When my daughter approached me with the idea of going to visit her girlfriend and family in Minnesota, my heart pounded. We have known them for many years now and they have been so like family to us. We talked about it and she and the family understood that I may last for only one day. There were places to go wish translated to me as "People" to deal with. There was their family to meet which transferred to my brain as "A place to go and feel cornered."
All of these thoughts ran through my mind. I am at least somewhat comfortable with my own family. And then it hit me. We weren't going to meet strangers. We were going to enjoy "family." We of course took the trip and when we arrived, I could feel the "family's" love surround us. They were so very happy to see us and we the same for them. We went to Lake Superior and I feel in love with the scenery before me. Watching the waves hit the rocks and cascade over the top of them. Watching those same waves rush up to touch our feet, like little Nymphs, flirting with us, trying so hard to get us to follow them back into the water. We watched huge ships come in and the bridge lift high to let the passing ships in and out of the Bay. We walked the Rose garden that has over 100,000 roses of every variety. The smell of roses was so much nose candy. The kind of nose candy that intoxicates your soul and fills your soul with a sense of heaven reaching down to earth Just for You.
We grilled steaks and burgers and brats and laughed and smiled and spent such precious time together. Our days were filled with going every where and playing cards and talking. Just plain talking. We met all of the family and they were so kind to us.
As we sat and talked and I realized how much at "home" I was with them, I felt the "family" presence in the house. There was no feeling of "OH My God, what happens if I do this or that?" Only Love. When I did fizzle or need time alone, they gave it and without a look of ""Did we do or say something wrong?" That is what family does. A different kind of blog here today, i know. A blog of smiles and enjoyment and of the wonderful vacation I* just experienced. A way to say THANK YOU to the beautiful "family" I just spent the past week with. Sometimes, the people we call friend become family and the door is always open to my home for them. No matter what reason they have for coming inside. What a wonderful gift Faye and Christall and Tim and their family are to my soul. I thank God for the blessing of them. Always, Darrel...

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Things I know about memories...

Tonight I sat and watched a show that touched my heart in so many ways. It made me think about how truly precious our memories are to us. The show is taken from a book called The Notebook. It is the story of a love that was beautiful and showed that Love can make Miracles. But it also tells the story of a woman, inflicted with Dementia. She writes down her memories in a notebook so that when she can no longer remember, her husband can read it to her. She hopes that the words will bring her back to him for just a little while. If you ever have the chance, please read the book or watch the movie.
As I watched this movie, thoughts ran through my mind. How precious our memories truly are to us. What a gift it is to have them and what a loss it would be to lose them. Our childhood memories, places we have been, things we have seen and done are a part of the person we are when we are adults. To lose those thoughts would change us and the person we are. The memory of my brothers hand on my shoulder, as I became his eyes at the age of seven. That memory helped create the man that I am today. If that memory were gone from me, the ability to write and to see the world in such detail and description might well be gone with it. The traveling that we did as a family when I was growing up showed me so many places and people. The life time that Sheila and I shared... to be lost from my memory would totally take from me so many things that I learned from her. I would be a different man and want different things in this life without those memories to look back on.
When Allie, the woman from the story, lost her memory, she began to live a totally different life. Though the essence of her personality were still hers, she had to start over again. The photo albums we create in our minds from our memories are often all we have left of some places and people in our lives. The cherished memories as well as those not so cherished are so much the reason we are who we are today. Losing them would be the same as losing part of our very soul. When I think of My Sheila, though sometimes it is through tears, I remember her laughter and her smile. I remember how everyday she would say "Good morning, good looking." I remember how with but a gentle touch, a brush of her fingertips on my skin told me exactly what she was thinking. When I was angry with someone, she could just place her tiny hand on my big arms and calm me in that very instant. Sometimes when i find myself angry, I remember that touch, and I find myself calming inside. Without that memory, what would calm me inside?
Though she was my forever True Love, she was not my only love in the years I have lived. The memories of a different love still reach my heart in the night. When I am sad, sometimes it is that love that brings to me a needed smile. This life has blessed me with many loves, each a different love... each a special memory in my soul. I will leave this world knowing in my heart of hearts that I have Truly been blessed more than any one man deserves. The memories of past loves, the new I might make with perhaps a new love, will be what carries me through until heaven calls me home.
Watching my daughters grow and building memories with them help me carry on each day. Love that fills my life in so many ways, from hearts that will be with me forever, sustain me in my lonely times. Can a memory or I should ask, can the loss of a memory be so devastating? I can answer that here, through tears that cloud my eyes, but not my thoughts. I cry myself to sleep at night because of a lost memory. My heart breaks in to pieces at the realization that although I remember Sheila's touch, her smell, her smile and even her very ways... I can no longer remember her precious voice. Try as I may, and The Father in heaven knows I try, I can not remember what her voice sounded like. To forget more than that would leave me crying I think forever.
Cherish the memories that are yours today. Hold tight to them and write them down somewhere. Make a little notebook as I have to my daughters, something you can pass on to them so they never forget what they have been to you. Perhaps my daughters will sit with me one day and read them back to me. Maybe the miracle of those memories will bring me back to them for just a moment. Just long enough to tell them I love them and how beautiful they have been in my life.
I pray I have my memory with me until I go away to heaven. I pray that one day I have the strength to listen to a tape my Sheila made before she went to heaven, so that I CAN hear her voice and so that I can remember. Today... is not that day for me.
Your memories are the most precious gift you will ever have. Hold them close to your heart. Cherish them forever. Share them often with those you love so that they stay alive in your heart and mind. Always, Darrel...

Attitude... does it make a difference?

Looking out of my second story window, I find myself reflecting once again on Life and where it has brought me too. I wonder why things happen or have happened in my life. What purposes they served and how I am going to use each thing that occurs in my life. Attitude is everything and it is many times the difference between making a bad thing good or a bad thing worse. The silence I feel more than hear today reminds me of where my life is today. My love has gone to heaven and my life changed totally forever. How I dealt with or am dealing with the loss is a lot of where my life will go. Again, attitude.
Where do I wander when I go here? I go to the whys in life. Many years ago, before the Bipolar found me, before Sheila came out of remission and our life was good... I had a medical condition that returned after 15 years of silence. I have Pulmonary Embolisms that like to show up now and then and try to Kill me.It was a very nasty one and they called the family in to say their goodbyes. Thankful to God, I survived it and after 10 days went home. Our life continued to go well but the closeness to death I had experienced had begun to take a silent toll on me. Less than two years later, another clot showed up. This one worse than the other. I knew how serious this one was and prayed so hard that God would spare me. I will add a poem written by me to the end here that was all about this incident.
God did spare me and thus comes the place I go perhaps too often. That clot added to my fear of dieing and left me scared and lost inside. But as I look back now, watching out my window, unable to cause myself to go outside of the house today, I wonder why He did choose to save me. Had I gone to heaven that time, Sheila would never have known the terrible heartbreak I brought to her over the next 4 years she was with me. She would not have watched as I regressed and the Bipolar and Turrets took over inside of me. She would have known only the love that I had for her and she would never have seen our world fall apart. What was his purpose for keeping me alive when the doctors said it was a miracle that I survived? Did I survive only to hurt my Love in ways that I am not sure can be forgiven? Did I live so that I could spend my lonely nights, crying myself to sleep at night because I miss My Love so much? Too go on hurting others by watching them fall for me when I knew my love was limited?
Attitude... that thing that gets us through our day or leaves us walking around like a Zombie, afraid to go outside, afraid to talk to much for fear we might say something that would hurt another soul. Wanting desperately to love and give all that I am, but afraid that in doing so, I would make the love I have for Sheila seem untrue or unreal? Welcome to my world... a bit mixed and insane at times.
So now, each morning I wake and I tell myself all the reasons God saved me. I remind myself of all the "good" I have done for others. Remembering the lives that because I am here today, have been made it little better for knowing me. I give myself a list in my brain as to why I should stay. Why I should continue to write novels and share my thoughts with others. God must have had a reason for saving me and so I will for now, continue to do what I think is good. I will continue to reach out to hearts that are sad or that feel they have no worth. As I reach out to them, tell them that they are good and that they are loved, perhaps I am reaching into myself and telling myself the same thing.
Attitude...the story of how Sheila's attitude and will to live and love gave us 24 years instead of four, together. How a simple thing like having a beautician come into her hospital room and groom her and make her feel alive, saved her life for another 10 years. It caused her to feel Alive again after so very long in the hospital.
Attitude... how I will choose to walk through this life. Alone and wondering what might or might not be, pondering life and where I will go from here. Not an easy thing for me. I think sometimes my words have helped others, bipolar or manic or completely fine people understand they are not alone and that someone DOES understand and share their confusion.Perhaps my only reason for being here is so that others may know that they are loved and wanted and needed and will have a place to go when they are tired and just need to vent. There are for certain great blessing to receive in doing these things.
Today, for now, at this moment... I choose to have a Positive attitude. I choose to stay and continue to reach out to those in need and see them smile. this moment I choose not to tear myself down and cause my own self to hurt. It really is all about your attitude. It is the basics of survival in this crazy world.
Today, I will try and be happy...
the poem about my perception of the night I was nearly gone...
God In His Mercy Said Stay.

The thunder rolled in from all around
and the lightening struck the ground,
The clouds they moved like a roaring train
and my eyes hurt from the pounding rain.
The sky’s had a look about them
like nothing that I had ever seen,
The darkness was a blackness so complete,
I knew what it had to mean.
So frightened was I of what could happen this night
that somewhere I almost lost sight,
That though I wanted to stay with my children and wife,
“He” promised me eternal life.
I searched through the clouds and the terrible storm
looking for some sign of light,
Then in my heart I felt such a warmth
as a curtain opened and the sun shown in bright.
I looked through the window it’s golden light bright
and I felt it call me to come,
Though I knew it was heaven I was still feeling fright
for on this earth I just wasn’t done.
Now there are those who will say this was all in my head
and just the state of mind I was in,
But my friends as I laid in my room on the bed
it was heaven I saw through the dim.
In all of that darkness the storms raging wild,
a light shone through the darkness for me,
And God in his love and mercy for this child...
Gave me life and said “Stay for Awhile”.
Thank you Father for your love and mercy.

Author's Comments:
"This poem was written shortly after I had my last Pulmonary Embolism. That night I waited for over 40 minutes for an ambulance to get to me. The doctors called all of my family in and told them to say goodbye as I was going to die. I did see a light and doorway that night. I felt that I could have gone through it but I prayed to God to let me stay with my family a little while longer. He blessed me with his grace and let me stay. "

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Welcome to My World... The things I know about it.

Depression... such a confusing and sometimes terrifying state of mind. What brings it on? What makes it stronger at times? Why do some suffer more and why does it take some to the very brink of the end and not others? Is it their make-up inside? The way they look at life, even through sad eyes? There are I am sure 1000 reasons or answers to those questions. The way the are answered is greatly influenced by the frame of mind one is in when the questions are asked. There are a lot of studies concerning depression that help to answer the questions medically or clinically. Abuse. Past physical, sexual, or emotional abuse. Certain medications.Conflict. Death or a loss. Sadness or grief from the death or loss of a loved one.Genetics. A family history of depression may increase the risk. It’s thought that depression is passed genetically from one generation to the next. The exact way this happens, though, is not known. Major events. Even good events such as starting a new job, graduating, or getting married can lead to depression. So can moving, losing a job or income, getting divorced, or retiring. Other personal problems. Serious illnesses.Substance abuse. Nearly 30% of people with substance abuse problems also have major or clinical depression.
Those above are just a few of the reasons why one becomes depressed. I think that even in knowing the real reason for depression, it still will come down to the individual and where they are at in their minds. I know that for me, a sufferer of not only depression but of Bipolar and Turrets, that life comes at me from all angles and it can come on with little or no warning signs. It can take me from the state of smiling and loving life to that place where no one ever truly wants to go. A place that I have heard people say "If he would just ignore it or take control, he doesn't HAVE to be that way." What a statement to make. For many, such as myself, that is like saying "He doesn't have to breathe. He can just get over it." Breathing is a part of living just as Depression is a part of living for me.
Do I want to be in this place of darkness? Do I enjoy being here? Is it alright to feel this way!?? The answer to all of those questions is "Hell NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!" I do NOT want to be in this place and I do not enjoy it and NO,it is certainly NOT alright to be this way. Medications don't work for me. Therapy helps a bit if you get the right person that is willing to listen and give ideas on what might help to lessen or slow down the depressive state of mind in which one may find themselves. It is a hard row to hoe and the bad that creeps up on me takes me to the darkest side of the world. I feel as if I have faulted people in some way. I feel as if I have no worth and that the only thing I am good at or for is hurting someone. That by knowing me and caring for me, you are setting yourself up for a hurt.
Today, this moment as I type furiously {a symptom of the disorders}i am there. I feel inside I have hurt some people today. I feel I have caused them to leave me and there is little or nothing anyone could say that would change my thinking right now. I think of My Sheila and the suffering she lived through every day and wonder why I could not be as strong as she was. Only her unconditional love for me allowed us to stay as one even though I hurt her in such a bad way. I pray God can forgive me for that one. The feeling of wondering what purpose I even serve being here on earth escapes me today. Though I am sure it is out there, I certainly do NOT feel it nor see it any where nearby. tears flow as I miss My Sheila and as I think about all i have done that caused her heart to hurt and perhaps...and yes I do go here, maybe caused her to feel it was time or alright to move on to Heaven. I cry for the friends I caused to go away or stop talking because my attitude was anything but good or helpful.
To go away today and just not come back??? If not for my daughters and my parents, perhaps I would opt for a different place of being or not being. This is the world I live in. This is the state of mind in which books are written and ideas are born. Scary to think that the farther into the Abyss I fall, the better the novel I kick out for others to read. This world of mine, filled with sadness from which I have no clue where it came from, is a place I am far to familiar with. Will my writing here scare you away? Will it cause you to look at me now in a totally different way? Am I in fact tainted goods in your eyes now? Trust in me when i tell you that MY mind has all of these questions today.Thank God that still have my daughters and that there are still things I want to do in this life. To cut another Cd, to write that best selling novel some day. To see my daughters both happy and with someone that will treat them good and make them happy the rest of their lives. For them to know the love I knew with My Sheila. Those things help to keep me grounded for today, for this moment in time.
Love me, stand with me... even give of yourself to me. But know that this is the world I live in. This is where, just because I blinked, I was knocked into an Abyss of sadness that scares the hell right out of me. Forgive me for the way I am and for the inside pain I may or may not have caused you. I wish... I wish so much that I were different. But I am who and what I am. A loving man that would give to you anything i owned and never ask for it back.I would give up my bed for your comfort and ask nothing in return. I would even lay down my life for you if I thought it would help you to live better or longer. A man that loves everyone and gives all he has but can never belong nor be possessed by one person. I need to feel that I can reach out to anyone that is in need of anything I have to give.
For all of my faults, I am a good man...

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Tears of a man???

Tears... from a man? Is this o.k? According to my fathers father and his fathers father, going back and back and back, it is not. Men were not the criers between men and women. It was o.k, acceptable,expected and fully allowable for women to cry. It was what they did. Sad movies, weddings, funerals and just because were and are acceptable reasons for a women to cry. Men were allowed only at some funerals and... Hmmm? For a man to cry showed a weakness in his make-up. It meant that he was less strong and it was even uncertain if a man that cried could be depended upon to follow through in a crisis.
There are so many benefits that the ladies gained from their tears. They were healthy, healing, liberating and just plain felt good sometimes. So men were excluded from these benefits why? Society said it wasn't o.k. I guess the proper way to say that is that it simply wasn't "politically correct." An overly emotional man was looked upon as weak and fearful. He was seen as a little too "female." Some places and some people still feel this way. You are less of a man if you cry or show emotions to vividly. Hmmmm???
I am not sure what that makes me and a whole lot of other men that cry. Does it make me less of a man if I too see a movie that touched my heart and soul and it causes me to cry? Am I weaker because when someone I love is hurting inside, I sit and cry with them? When asked if it was o.k for a man to cry, the answers surprised me. Even today, in our much more liberal society, it was alright for a man to cry BUT... only under certain circumstances. So though accepted in part, crying is limited to ummm funerals, still. I hope I don't have to sit around and wait for someone to die before I can cry. The pent up emotions might be why some men kill. Maybe they just needed a good cry and couldn't wait around for the next funeral. A bit fasticious and sarcastic perhaps on my part here, but I think you get my drift here. Here is just one answer I found while asking the taboo question. {{{man should make his woman feel safe and when women see her man worrying about something she may feel not psychologically safe but i personally think that in some situations it's not bad to cry even for men, they just shouldn't cry for small things.}}}
So I am limited to the reasons I can cry because my lady won't feel safe with me if I cry for the wrong reasons? Wow... talk about pressure. Luckily, I was not raised by a man that felt crying was Taboo. My father showed his love for us and when an animal of ours died or something sad happened, he was not ashamed nor afraid to show us he cared. Did it make him less of a man or a father to me? On the contrary. It made him human and approachable. More respect than I have for my father a man could not have. His willingness to reach out and give to us all the elements needed to grow up in a world less than kind sometimes I believe made me a better person.
I cry when you cry and I feel what you feel, no matter who you are. I am not ashamed to say I cry at sad or happy movies. My tears are as needed and important as anyone elses are. To pen them up for societies sake is stupid and unhealthy. I am an empath and therefore, I feel things deeply and vividly inside. My heart could not survive keeping my emotions at bay. So to the man that looked at me and rolled his eyes as I cried because I saw a little baby girl reach out to help an elderly man open his car door, I say... I am sorry for you. You are not a bigger man or better or stronger man than I am. You are just a little less human.
Life is hard today and people need the love and caring of each other if our world is to survive. A little crying might do our whole world a lot of good. Maybe we should give it a try more often.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Hurt and words...

This morning, let's talk about hurt. Not the kind of hurt you get when you fall down or trip over something. That hurt defines it's own self. I am talking about hurt to yours or an others heart. Hurt by words or actions that can destroy a persons life, their self-esteem.
I sit here today and I think back over the years. So many things have been given to me in the form of blessings. Some I have treated right and done well by. Sometimes it was a physical gift i received and other times, it was a living, breathing person. A heart and soul that I had the opportunity to care for, love, give too as well as receive back love. I think about My Sheila and the love that we shared. Beautiful in every way and more blessings than I will ever be able to convey here. We spent 24 years together and never, ever spoke a harsh word to one another. We never raised our voices at each other and never went to bed angry.
A little off-shoot story to that is this one. We had friends that used to tell us that Not fighting now and then was unhealthy. Ha Ha Ha, what the hell is that??? But unsure if they were wrong or right, Sheila and I decided that every Sunday morning we would by a newspaper. We would open it and then she would take one side of an issue in there and I would of course take the opposite side. We would sit and debate, if you will, the issue. We would do this for one hour and call that our "fight" for the week. Strange, I know, but it satisfied us and that's what mattered.
But then one day, 21 years into our marriage, I simply lost touch with what reality really was. We had been to Hell and back more times than any couple I knew. She had been on deaths bed so many times and in and out of the wheelchair for 19 of those 20 years. I will never truly know what issue or what situation caused me to astray, but astray I went. {I open myself up here and pray only that you do not judge me harshly.} I had reasons unmentioned here for why I strayed. Two blood clots on my lungs with-in 3 years. Sitting at deaths door, hearing the doctor tell my family he could do nothing and for them to say their goodbyes. Time, laying there for hours, barely able to breathe definitely had an effect on me. My loving wife, spending too many Holidays and so many years in the hospital, watching her suffer in pain, knowing I could NOT make her better, Life bringing with it sorrow and tears and depression beyond what I could have ever imagined. Guilt that plagued my soul for past Wong's that ONLY I saw. Being forgiven by everyone except for myself. Take your pick as to which one sent me over the edge and into hurting the one woman I loved more than life itself. At any rate, I found I could not be all she needed though I realize today I was always that to her. What I did just her so badly and yet her unconditional love for me caused her to allow me to stay a huge part of her life and soul. We of course remained loving one another and stayed as one until the day she went to heaven.
But the HURT was so intense and I knew I caused it. My love for her and hers for me made the hurt worse. I look at the relationships I have been in since she went to heaven. I think of the hurt that I have caused peoples heart. GOOD people that did only one thing. They Loved me. My inability to give of myself all they needed and truly deserved caused them to go away. My taking their love and then becoming unable to commit myself fully made them cry and hurt. Though unintentional, hurt never the less.
I tell you all of this because the word "hurt" was so on my heart when I woke this morning. How strong is this word? In what capacity can it be used to inflict sorrow on ones soul? Words... words have the ability to shatter a persons heart and soul. Things that we say every single day have the potential to wreak havoc on somebodies life. As we speak to one another, we must think about what our words are going to do. What effect will they have and how hurtful will they be. We don't know what battle a person has raging inside of them. We don't know what state of mind they are in. It is so important that we think about this before we speak. Sheila and I survived what we went through for a number of reasons. One was for certain the fact that we never had a bad thing to say to one another.
Hurt comes in all shapes and sizes and can leave a person scarred for life. Loves grown that had all the greatest of good intentions that simply did not stay. They say the road to Hell is paved with "good intentions." I don't know. But I do know that to hurt someone you love dearly will leave you with regrets that will last your lifetime. There may be Forgiveness but there is rarely forgetting. Be careful how you speak to someone. Choose your words carefully and consider the other persons heart and soul. I will be forever seeking forgiveness for things I have done.
Again, why I write some of the things I write I have no clue. I only write what is in my heart... Always I am just me. Darrel

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Things I know about feeeling a loved ones presence.

Today I write about loved ones lost and their presence. Sounds strange maybe but truly, if I have learned anything in the past 2 1/2 years it is this. Though our loved ones may not be sitting with us, drinking a cup of coffee physically, they are so very much with us. We simply need to open our hearts and minds to see them.
My daughter and her family came to visit for the past two weeks. Such a wonderful joy they were and we crammed a year into 14 days. there were moments that we were laughing and smiling and simply enjoying that I found myself needing to step away for a short time. Not because I do not enjoy the great times we share. I stepped away because I glanced up at a picture of Sheila {my wife who is in heaven}and myself also laughing and enjoying life. I looked at the picture and suddenly felt that tears might come. I quietly left and sat outside on our swing and thought of her.
I remembered our first walk in the soft gentle rain. A rain that turned into a downpour and made us run our butts off to the nearest shelter where we laughed and kissed and held one another as the lightening lit the sky. I smiled and I cried at that memory, realizing I could not remember the sound of her laughter. I tried so hard and cried harder as I found myself unable to hear that sound. I could feel her laughter inside of my heart but I could not hear her. I sat there wondering why she wasn't there with me. Why couldn't she have stayed longer and been here to see all the laughter, to hear the sounds of our children and their children enjoying what she taught us best to do. Enjoying life!
I remembered our first snow and how we ran outside and threw snowballs at one another. How I tackled her and kissed her in the snow. In response, she shoved a handful of snow down my back and we laughed so hard. We spent most of our life laughing because with her disease, often it was that or just collapse. I am sure we chose the right path to go.
I also remembered the many times I went to the hospital, only to find her curled in a ball, hurting so badly, but unwilling to take something for it because she was carrying our daughter. I curled up next to her and just held her tight to me. Her sacrifices and unconditional love were the essence of my strength. I sat on the swing and looked up at the clouds. I searched them as if I were going to find her face in one of them. And I again asked her why she couldn't have stayed longer. Did I do something to cause her to finally say "enough." Was my inability to cling tight to her and my mind being twisted by the Bipolar that had not even been labeled yet cause her to go to heaven? Did she know that I would have lifted her a million more times just to share our "Dance?"
Then as if to answer my heart, I heard her sweet voice. She told my heart she WAS with me. She told me she was watching from heaven and sitting beside me on the swing. I looked around and a butterfly flew by, flying a bit unsteady as Sheila walked when she was able to. I heard the loudest laughter coming from inside the house. I heard my oldest telling my youngest "You are soo much Mom! God sometimes it's like talking to her!" That is when it hit me. Sheila wasn't gone at all. She went to heaven yes, but her essence, her life and love for life was alive! Alive in the things that surrounded me. Alive in my daughters and their lives. She was perhaps more with us now than any other time in our lives. She could move freely, without the restraint of the wheelchair that was her constant companion. I looked around me and saw her in everything. She was in the movement of the trees that were blowing, the sound of the wind was her voice.It blew across my face and I knew it was her touch. The same touch that calmed me when I was angry with someone. The touch that said "I love you" without a word being spoken. The sweet touch that said "We have a date tonight, Good Looking. Don't be late" as she went towards our bedroom. She had and has been here all along. Sometimes I knew that as I could feel her near me. Now, she opened my eyes to see that I had her somewhere no one else could see nor touch. This is our place and ours alone.
To lose a loved one is devastating beyond words. I won't even try to say I know what a person is going through when they lose a loved one. Each of our hearts are too different to make that claim. I only know that they can only go away if we allow them to. They can only fade if we let them fade away. We CAN choose to see them in the things around us. The flowers and trees and water and mostly... in our children. Your loved one lives on in every single memory and sees all that you do and feels all that you feel. You need only to reach out and take their hand in yours. Whether their hand is a flower or a leaf or whatever you choose to see them in.
I still can not remember her voice and it causes me to cry here and now. I have a tape of her talking to me but can't bring myself to listen yet. One day perhaps. I guess time will tell. Just don't let go of the memories you have of your loved ones. Make as many as you can as they may be all you have of them someday. But remember, they are ALWAYS near by and always just a soft spoken "hello" away. Their presence can be felt just by thinking about them and personifying them in what you see or hear. It is truly "never goodbye... It is only see you later." Hugssss to you all and God bless you. By the way, I went back inside and laughed as loud and as hard as I could. smilesssss. Darrel

Monday, August 4, 2008

things I know about On-line relationships

I don't know where this is going today. I just feel like writing and this subject was written about by a dear friend. It caused me to sit and ponder a bit about this. I began chatting on-line wayyyyyyyyyy back when chat was new and there was no voice and things were slower. ICQ was big then and Cheetah Chat was working on getting voice. People were whatever they wanted to be and to be who you really were was something rare. It made me almost a freak as what you saw on-line was who you met off line. Eventually, I did meet many people from on line and yes, I had ummm shall we say, too many on-line relationships. I was lonely and searching and yet not sure what it was I was searching for.
Who the ladies were is not relevant and their names I would never reveal. The fact is that I learned early on that these were not just names on a screen somewhere out in Cyber-land. They were real people with real lives and real sad and happy times. They too were there, searching, sometimes without a clue as to what it was they truly needed. Some became life-long friends and some were simply seasons changing in their lives and mine. Yes, a few I fell totally in love with and we met and enjoyed one anothers company for the time that we were allowed too. Sadly, some of those friends I did not ever meet.
How real are on-line relationships? They are real enough to bring life and love back into what is sometimes a very dry desert. They have the ability to give to you sometimes more love and more friendship and caring than those that you know outside of the net. They can cause you to forget what you should be doing to spend time with them. They cause you to get up hours earlier than normal to spend quiet times with them. You think about them when you are away and pray for them when they are away. They are in your heart and your mind and capture your soul as if you had known them since another lifetime ago.
And... they can hurt you and be hurt by you as if they had been sitting right beside you. Loves I have never forgotten nor ever will. Life changing touches that stir your heart and make you want to be nearer to them. You can feel their hearts and you know them and they know you sometimes better than the people you live with. You open your heart and tell them things you never tell nor have told anyone else. And strangely, you give to them trust that is often very hard fought by those that surround you out side the net.
The on-line dating services are a clear visual of how real and how huge the attraction to finding someone to love is today. Testamonies of people that have met and fell in love and yes, married are all over the net. They seem to last as long as a "traditional" marriage or relationship. Online love is todays electronic version of yester-years Pen pals. The net is now an extension of our homes and our lives and truly... our hearts.
And then there is one more reality that makes it as real as it gets. This year I lost two of the most beautiful friends I will ever know.They had been with me since the very first time I logged in and said hello. They were dear to my heart and the friendship we found and the caring and love we shared was as real as anything I have ever known. The loss of them hit me hard and I cried for days. It was truly the same as losing a family member. They were family. Their passing on will be with me forever and the memories will always be mine to keep. One of them was known through out my family. When she died, my Father cried with me. That my friend, is REAL.
I have hurt and been hurt, loved and been loved, cried over and cried for. I have met and know some of the most beautiful people the world will ever know. I have been blessed more than any man, especially this man, ever deserved.
Do I reccomend on-line love? Do I think it is a healthy way to fall in love? Does an on-line friendship always become Love? First of all, if you can fall in love or want to fall in love out side the net, then I say, don't be afraid if it happens on-line. Healthy relationships come in all shapes and sizes and from all walks of life. The net is just one of those avenues. You have to be careful AND use your head. You need to truly know all you can about this person before you meet them. Sometimes people aren't always who they say they are. There is a danger in this on-line AND off-line. As far as do they all become Love? Well, sometimes they become intimate and it is easy to Love others here. But no, not all become love. I think that all become a caring relationship, much like your family, if you talk to them long enough. but their are many I know and have talked to for 12 or more years that have remained the truest of friends and will remain that forever.
I will say that I am still here today, Bipolar and all, because of someone that gave me love and understanding when I was ready to call it quits for this round of living. For that love and giving i will always be blessed and feel thankful for.
On-line relationships can be so fabulous and can give to you a peace and a love that will stay with you forever. They can also hurt your heart and soul in ways you can not even imagine. Treat those you speak to here with the same respect as you would any person you know off-line. Protect your heart and expect anything to happen here. love with a fury and passion and remember that seasons do change sometimes and lives are changed with them. Do not be unkind to people you know here. You do not know what battles they are fighting while they talk to you.
On-line relationships... I have had ummm a few. They have been soooo beautiful. My only regret is that I have hurt some along the way. For that, I am forever sorry. It is REAL hurt and REAL sorries. just my thoughts. Always I am... Darrel.

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