I have a routine now that summer is over. I walk each morning with my friend Talla. We solve all the world’s problems in that one hour each day! After the walk, I head to the YMCA to row. The first thing I did when I finally had a little money was to join the YMCA. I met Barry at the “Y” and I like the mix of people. At the “Y” you don’t see a lot of fancy workout wear, just sweats, guys in cargo shorts and maybe a guy or two wearing crocks while walking on the treadmill. I love it there.
I started rowing a couple of years ago because I wanted to build some muscle in my arms and back. Each day, I grab a machine next to an older guy who rows three hours each day. Lots of other older guys stop by to talk sports with him. They cover it all: Vikings, U of M football and basketball, the Wild, Timber Wolves and even the Lynx! But no one talks about figure skating, my favorite sport!
Barry loved all these sports and spent a lot of time watching them on TV. I watched with him, half listening while knitting or doodling. He would also watch figure skating. But I usually found him asleep after just a few skaters performed. I don’t watch sports anymore. When Barry went to the care center, I decided not to watch sports, except figure skating. Do I miss hearing play-by-play in the background? I didn’t think so, but this morning after leaving the YMCA, I wondered why I row each day shooting the breeze with guys about sports? I figured out that maybe I do miss sports background noise. I also think that more than anything, I miss having male stuff going on around me.
We all have interesting ways of coping with life when we lose someone we love. I think if you permit yourself to get out in the world, you will slowly figure out what you need. I need to be around guys talking about sports — at least for now. Will I watch sports again? Hey, for now I don’t need to because I hear all about it each morning. If I could only get the guys to talk about figure skating as well!
Figuring more stuff out
The other night, I was exhausted from a busy day. When I went to bed, I just turned off the light instead of reading. All my adult life, I have read before falling asleep on my left side to catch the light on my bedside table. Then I would remain sleeping on my side of the bed all night, inches from the edge of the bed. My side? That is a concept that doesn’t apply to me anymore. It did when Barry was at home. We each had our side of the bed and it never changed. I wondered why I am still jammed on one side. It had never dawned on me until then that I really don’t need to be on my side of the bed anymore.
So I got up and put myself right in the middle of the bed. It was time — and it was okay.