#8 in the first year of the widow’s journey

2 May 2019

Everything is different without you

Well Rod, I’ve safely arrived in France, got a bank account set up, got a temporary apartment, got a temporary cellphone number and WiFi, did some first grocery/supplies shopping, did my first cooking, cleaned up the apartment and walked to work to check out how much time will be needed…it’s all good. 1 May is a holiday so I have had a day to rest, which is good! Welcome to your new life Sarah. Strange new world for me. I sure did think about you when I was grocery shopping..looking at things I know you would buy, looking at other things and wondering or just smiling. Seemed so strange setting up the apartment. You always did that. Still wondering about how to run the washing machine and remembering when the washer pinched your thumb 22 years ago! I brought some things with me and of course wish I had brought some other things, but they will be in the shipment. I’ll go on Friday morning to look at the 3 apartments they have picked out…we’ll see what they look like. I’m not a very good judge of space as you know! I brought some of your stuff with me Rod, your ashes, the Service flag, some clothes, some of your jewelry..all things I want to be able to touch some day and hold you in my hands.

I sure do miss you Rod. I think I’ll be ok here, but it sure is different without you. Everything is different without you. You will always be the love of my life Rod, always.

6 May 2019

Then came the morning

Yesterday was a tough one again Rod…missed you bad. After going to the church, hearing the music, lighting the candle, I came outside and it just hit me…I leaned on these cold stone walls and sobbed. I took a deep breath and walked back through the market, bought some expensive baked goods, and finally got home…nothing would satisfy…food, cooking, shopping, more food…it all brought tears, sick stomach…but Nothing satisfied…all of these things could not fill the hole in my soul… missing you. A fitful night, no sleep, I got up this morning and raised the curtain…and saw the sun shining on Clermont. The song that kept coming to my mind was “Then come the morning”. I remember you singing it Rod, not all the words, but you knew the melody and sang what you knew. I know it was you Rod singing this in my mind. It did give comfort, and tears. I miss you Rod. All I can say, is that You will always be with me, just behind my eyes, always in my heart, always be the love of my life. Always.

Grief is a cruel companion…and a poor substitute for you. It’s unpredictable, fast acting, seems to delight in hitting me when I’m down. It’s just the opposite of you Rod.

Father, I thank You for the time with Rodney and I pray for strength, one day at a time to learn to live without him here in earth, here in France. I ask that You bless him today and let him know I’m ok… one day at a time and that I look forward to our reunion…that heavenly, heavenly reunion. One day at a time, I approach it. No man knows the hour…and I don’t know what tomorrow holds…but I know who holds tomorrow….and at this moment, that gives me peace. Thank you Father…for that I’m grateful. In Jesus name I pray.


Then came the morning by Guy Penrod

They all walked away, nothing to say
They’d just lost their dearest friend
All that He said, now He was dead
So this was the way it would endThe dreams they had dreamed were not what they’d seemed
Now that He was dead and gone
The garden, the jail, the hammer, the nail
How could a night be so long?Then came the morning
Night turned into day
The stone was rolled away
Hope rose with the dawnThen came the morning
Shadows vanished before the sun
Death had lost and life had won
For morning had comeThe angel, the star, the kings from afar
The wedding, the water, the wine
Now it was done, they’d taken her Son
Wasted before His timeShe knew it was true, she’d watched Him die too
She’d heard them call Him just a man
But deep in her heart she knew from the start…

19 May 2019

The greatest of these is love

I kept searching for the best definition of love…and I found it in the Bible in 1 Corinthians chapter 13:

1Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.2And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.3And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.4Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,5Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;6Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;7Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.8Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.9For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.10But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.11When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.12For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.13And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

Rodney, you and I knew true love, vulnerable, great love. For this I am grateful. I cannot lock my heart away in a dark coffin, I cannot hide my vulnerabilities, I must live like Jesus taught us to live and live my fellows, and know that even with faith and hope inside me, if I do not have love, I am nothing. You will always be the love of my life Rodney, always. We loved like the verses in 1 Corinthiens 13, we shared our vulnerabilities, we dared greatly to love.

Father God,

Thank you for the courage and gift of curiosity that is unveiling the directions and fueling Your will through intuitive thought to me. I ask for the strength to dare greatly. I ask for the courage to be genuinely vulnerable and connect with my fellow man. I ask that You bless my Rodney greatly and Thank you for him. I ask that you open my ears and eyes and most of all my heart and give me the strength to do Your Will always.



29 May 2019

8 months Rod…just to type those words seems surreal, still. I miss you so much Rod. Today, I made a pilgrimage walk, my first ever, in your memory Rodney. I said many prayers, lit a candle, write your name on prayer ribbons, talked to you and God all along the way. I’m not sure it was something that you and I would have done together, it was something for me. I believe I can do the Chemin de St Jacques to Santiago de Compostella now and I believe even more I will do it when I retire.

The first stage was about commencement, starting a new life with Christ. For me it was also about starting a new life without you physically here on earth. The second phase was about reflection, silence and listening to nature. I can’t remember what the 3rd and 4th stages were..I just remember we (me and my fellow pilgrims) ended up in the old cathedral and for the first time since going to church, it was packed! It was special to be a part of this Rod. It was even more special to talk to God and you, and to express gratitude for so many things …I ask God to bless you in your new mission Rodney<