From the Trenches

I said in my last post that I wasn’t going to give you a play by play of my life, however, this post will make me seem like a liar. 

But, I felt that I needed to give you an explanation of why after getting off to a strong start, I suddenly go MIA. 

I made it to see my kids, a 14 hour drive. The next morning I participated in my grandson’s dedication, which was precious 


and immediately after the service found out that my father passed away. 

So, the next morning we’re in the car driving 18 hours to the little mill town where my father lived. It’s his wife’s hometown, not his. 


So now I’m typing this on my phone in a stuffy hotel room after spending the day yesterday doing those things you do when someone dies: picking out clothes for them to be buried in, meeting with the funeral home, meeting with the minister, cleaning out his room at the assisted living facility, etc. 


I’m doing this more as an assistant to my older brother who was more present in my Dad’s life and had already done a lot of work before I got here. 

My brother is wise and has the ability to define things which helps me. As we sat with the minister, she said, “Tell me about your father.” Without missing a beat, my brother said, “He was a difficult man.” He said, “My father was a brilliant man but he treated his family like employees.” 

She turned to me and asked if there was anything I would like said or done. I said, “I just want honesty. My father was a genius with several patents to his name, made great contributions to the air conditioning industry, he was an amazing person but let’s don’t pretend that he was a loving, doting father. 

I may sound harsh, but after spending my life where those in charge struggled with mental disorders, sanity and living in truth is real important to me. 

So, again, here I am after the passing of yet another person in my life (that’s 6 now in just a little over a year) taking a load of their belongings to the donation center. 

This time, however, his belongings had been minimized and his affairs were in order. But even with all that was done ahead of time, there’s a lot to do. 

It’s not easy to make decisions when grief, regrets and your own mortality are hanging on you like monkeys on a tree. So can I give you advice from the trenches? 

Go ahead, today, begin to free up your life: forgive, reconcile if you can, get rid of the baggage (emotional, spiritual and physical) that weighs you down and be present for yourself and those you love. TELL, with your own words, the people you love that you love them, that you’re proud of them and you’re glad they’re alive! 

Peace, 

Jill

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7 thoughts on “From the Trenches

  1. Well, I don’t actually ‘like’ what you are going through but I do admire how you wrote about it. This is tough. So tough. My word, what a horrible year. God Bless!!

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  2. I am sorry for your loss. Having also experienced a childhood where those in charge struggled with mental illness, I totally get what you mean about clinging to honesty! The one who is struggling does not know they are, so they think you must be the problem. As a child we can’t rationalize this, so we assume they must be correct, and there is something inherently wrong with us. Thanks be to God that he is the Good, Good Father! Thanks be to him that he breaks the lies which can so chain us. Blessings sister, may God grant you peace as you continue to through what sounds like a heavy season of grief.

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  3. Might I say that I hope you will let your life flow from your heart through your fingertips here lovely. xx You refer to a ‘play by play’, but I don’t see it that way at all. We want to get to know you, love you for who you are, and who you’re becoming. Let it flow.

    I am sorry you went from such a joyous occasion straight over to a heart wrenching one. Please accept my condolences on your father’s passing. You are on point though. We are not promised tomorrow. We should try and live each day as if it were our last. xx

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