What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Friday, July 18, 2014

This Will Probably Be a Mish-Mash of Thoughts

The title expresses what I am thinking...a "mish-mash" of thoughts.  What exactly does that mean? It means that I have so many things going around in my head that I can't seem to focus on any one thing to make much sense, so I will just say whatever random things pop into my head (that are printable...Ha!)

"This is the the day that the Lord has made! I WILL rejoice and be glad in it!" (Psalm 118:24)
Someone painted this smiley face on a cut tree by the side of our road. I thought it might make you smile today.

That's a good way to start.  It kind of settled my brain a bit.  I was having a few moments of wishful thinking about things that I cannot do or have or change, and I needed to remember just how much I have already...and to be thankful.

This past week was a little bit stressful in some ways.  Still dealing with the loss of my son almost two months ago. Can't believe it has been that long already.  My thoughts this week have been that it seems as though when a person dies, people just stop talking about him all of a sudden. As if he never existed. It's almost like people are afraid to mention his name for fear it might cause sorrow or sadness. I find myself looking at his pictures
Matthew, me, and  his son Noah, October 2013 in Maine
and thinking that he really can't be gone...surely he's still up there in his home in Maine, and we'll all see each other again soon.  But then I remember that he's not there, and I cannot just pick up the phone and talk to him like I used to almost every day, and it makes me sad. So, sometimes I talk to him anyway as I drive home after work in my car...tell him I love him and miss him and that I hope he's having a wonderful time in heaven...(of course he is! How could he NOT have a wonderful time in heaven?)

No, I'm not going crazy. Just dealing with grief.  One sweet lady who happened to stop by my office this week asked me how I was doing, and she actually acted like she was interested in knowing the answer, and so I told her how I was feeling and about some of the things I was dealing with and wondering what to do about. She responded with some excellent words of counsel and advice, and took a few extra moments to listen and express her very positive and caring thoughts.  I can tell you that those five minutes of conversation did me a world of good. It was wonderful to be able to talk to someone about my son and not feel like they were shying away and afraid to listen.

My father used to say that when he died we would all look through his things and wonder why he kept this or that, or what he was going to do with such and such, and find out more about the things he loved and dreamed about.  I am sorry to say that we were in such a hurry to clean out his house and get it sold and the property divided appropriately among the heirs that there was little time to sort through his personal papers and things that he saved...and except for the more obvious items like furniture, antiques, tools, and other things of "value", a lot of other stuff just simply went away. The people who were in charge of the estate sale sold off the remaining piles of leftover items, books, papers, to the "pickers" who bought everything that was left in one lot and cleaned out the house and hauled a lot of stuff to the dump. I've often wondered what "treasures" my father was talking about that may have disappeared in that deal...and I guess we'll never know. It grieves me that we didn't have the time or take the time to sit down and read the things he had saved or written.  We might have learned a lot from them.

However, then I pause to remember that the most important "treasures" he left us cannot be held in our hands. They are the memories of the wonderful things we did together as a family...the lessons he taught us and lived before us every day.  It is the same with our son Matthew. We have such treasures in our hearts of the memories of the life he lived and the things he believed and lived; the way he raised his own son, who is quickly becoming a fine young man with the qualities and values he learned from his father.
My grandson Noah helping his uncle build a memorial arbor in the garden created in his father's memory.

Job well done...as you can tell by the smiles and the sweat!

I look at all the "stuff" I have in my home, and think about the things I have written and tucked away in secret drawers and boxes that hopefully my family will find when I am gone and not let it get away, but then again, it is the life that I have lived before them and the things of the heart and spirit that I have hopefully taught them that will be lasting memories. If my life hasn't been a true picture of the things that are important to me, then it really won't matter what they read later. My life needs to measure up to the values espoused in my writing, or the writing isn't true anyway.

Okay, this "mish-mash" of thoughts needs to get summed up and finished. To be honest, there was a lot more "stuff" going on in my mind than I wrote here on this page. But these were apparently the more prevalent thoughts. It is good to get this off my chest.


  1. When someone has lost a loved one, let them talk about that person. They may need to talk.
  2. Don't think the grieving person doesn't want to hear their loved one's name or see his picture, or know that other people remember him too. It helps them to know that the departed one is not forgotten.
  3. Do go out of your way to let the grieving person know that you do care and that you are available to listen.  
  4. Find creative ways to help the grieving person to remember their loved one...in happy, pleasant ways. 
  5. It is okay to laugh and smile and think of funny things about the deceased. We all want to be remembered with happy thoughts.
  6. Make every minute count when you are with your loved ones...don't put off telling them that you love them, cherish them, and that you care about the things that are important to them.

As you can tell, I am working through these different stages of grief mentioned in a previous post HERE.  I am writing these things in the hope that perhaps others may find help, whether they be grieving, or know someone who is. 

Thank you for taking the time to "listen" to this "mish-mash" of thoughts. May you also be able to say:

 "This is the the day that the Lord has made! I WILL rejoice and be glad in it!" (Psalm 118:24)



  1. Pam, thank you so much for sharing your heart and thoughts here this evening. You have made so many good points. My dad passed in 1982 when our youngest was in kindergarten. Pappy was our Matthew's hero...and when we were at home (we lived a few hours away) we never stopped talking about him. I wanted my dad to remain alive in my kids memories for a very long time. My mom on the other hand forbid us to mention his name in her presence for over a year after his passing because she said it made it harder for her. You and I are so much alike...I would want to talk...yes, it may cause tears, but it also would help me heal. Love you, my friend. I am praying for you on a daily basis. xo Dianna

    1. Thank you for understanding Dianna. It is difficult for me because not very many people here actually knew Matthew except for our immediate family. Even though people are very sympathetic and have been very comforting, they don't KNOW him, so I really can't talk to them about him that much. And my immediate family are still working through their own emotions and grief...everyone grieves differently, and we have to respect each others feelings. I know it takes time, but I am like you in that I don't want him forgotten. Thank you for understanding all of my "mish-mash" thoughts! xoxo to you too.

  2. What may have begun as a "mish-mash" of scattered thoughts actually came together as a truly helpful and insightful post about the grieving process and what friends can do to help. Thank you Pam, I am going to share this for so many others that I know. Susie

    1. Thank you Susie. It is my hope and prayer that God will use my experience in some way to help and encourage others who are going through similar heartaches. There are so many hurting people out there, grieving for different reasons...and all need time to heal. But in the meantime, we need to know that people haven't forgotten us or our loved one, and that the positive memories and thoughts will continue on in ways that are meaningful. Thank you for sharing this with others. Love ya girlfriend.


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