Moving Forward, Not On

BewareI intended to write something this weekend, but chores got the better of me and I didn’t get it done. I’ve been thinking quite a lot as Christmas approaches. You see, Christmas was Wife’s holiday. I think she lived for the season. She loved to give gifts at Christmas.

As I reflect on the year past, it’s clear I’ve been dealing with the fallout from losing a spouse. There was more than just the business affairs to handle. There was an accumulation of 40 years of stuff, much of which I no longer want or need. So, in parallel to dealing with my emotions, my grief, I spent a lot of time dealing with things. Many of them were donated to charity. In fact, most of them were.

I’m approaching the end of this phase. I’m also approaching the anniversary of her death. It’s not an anniversary to celebrate, not in the normal sense of celebration. I will, however, celebrate her life and remember her. As my friend Jim says, “It sucks less, but it still sucks.”

I sense the need to move forward. I’m not really moving on, because that implies something I am not doing. These changes didn’t come by any choice, but by circumstance. I’m not leaving Wife behind because she’s no longer here. I am, however, prepared to move forward to whatever is next for me.

I’m still working out what that should be. For one thing, my expenses are reduced and I’ll be saving more of my pay. It’s time to get serious about padding my retirement account so I’ll have funds to draw from when the time comes I cannot (or don’t want to) work so much.

For another thing I intend to pursue more art. I am working on my photographic skills. As the chores around the house are reduced, I’ll feel free to do more weekend trips. I want to drive out to the coast and spend some weekends out there with a camera. I want to drive up into Oregon and Idaho, and maybe Washington to explore and make images. There will also be some geocaching to do as I wander about. I have a lot of Nevada left to explore.

I might face a change of engagement some time along the way. Work has been slow this year. There are some projects in the pipeline that should provide me with chargeable time. I’m hoping that 2014 will provide enough work to justify my continued employment. If it doesn’t, it will be time to think of a change. I’m not OK with drawing pay and not having enough to do.

In any event, I’m ready to move forward. I want to do some things besides working here at the house and staying home most of the weekends. It’s time.