This blog is dedicated to my friend, my mentor, and the best teacher I have ever had. Without him, I would not have embarked on this amazing journey. Split, this blog is for you!
Ponderosa Misty Icon, aka "Split," is a handsome gray Welsh pony who came to me via a phone call "out of the blue" (actually Peterborough, Ontario). Our first few months together were rocky to say the least, which made me question my ability as a horse owner, as a horsewoman, and as a rider. Forty years of horse ownership had not prepared me for this little gray pony!
But we muddled through and because of Split, I have begun a journey that is both spiritual and enlightening. I hope something here resonates with you and that you'll check back now and then.
We leave you with one of our favorite quotes: "The best whisper is a click!"

Friday, September 3, 2010

Bob and my ass

Well, here I am again. Thank you, Ariamne (isn't that the coolest name??) for inspiring me to sit down at the keyboard and start blogging again. "Reblogging?"
There's another word to add to the dictionary in a few years!
I sort of had the wind taken out of my sails in July. I've been floundering around, trying to wrap my head around the death of one of our very best friends. Bob was 76 and he and his wife, Kathy, have been my husband's and my best friends for 20 years. Bob and Kathy's daughter (their only child), Jess, and my youngest daughter have been best friends for all that time, too! Because Bob and Kathy had no family up here, we spent lots of time together - holidays, graduations, birthdays, sporting events..........20 years of fun, friendship and LOTS of laughter!
Bob was much older than his wife (by 20 years) and had suffered numerous health problems in the last 5 years. But none of us anticipated that one evening he would just..........die. He was like that big, pink bunny who keeps banging on that drum or like a Timex watch - takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin'! Bob was bigger than life. Or so it seemed..................
I was getting ready for bed around 11:30 the evening of July 27 when the phone rang. It showed a call from Virginia and I assumed it was my cousin but it was Jess, phoning to say that her mom had just called to say that her dad had fallen down the stairs at home (final diagnosis - "spontaneous brain bleed") and was being airlifted to Albany Medical Center. Could I please meet them at the ER so that someone would be there with her mom? I woke up Katie (my youngest daughter; Jess's best friend) and told her what was going on. She shot out of bed, grabbed her jeans and said, "I'm coming with you." Bob and Kathy were truly like 2nd parents to Katie - she loves them both. The scene at the ER was like something out of a TV hospital show with everyone working quicky and efficiently. When Bob was finally fully evaluated and brought into a room, I knew immediately that he was, for all intents and purposes, gone from us. What amazed me during all of this was the poise, control and compassion that my daughter possesses. She's always been the social butterfly, the free spirit, the "spit in your eye" type of kid. But that night she showed what she's truly made of. Kathy asked that I stay with her thru all the doctor consultations, the viewing of the x-rays and CT scans, moving Bob to a room in ICU, the visits from the pastoral staff, social workers, etc. Katie asked the ER staff's permission to keep in touch with Jess in Virginia via phone and text messages and they willingly agreed. She helped Jess get her flight up here the next morning, picked her up at the airport, sat with her arm around her while Jess had to hear that there was no hope for her dad, held Bob's hand and talked to him while he took his last breaths..........................
Bob's death was a rude reminder that life is fragile and truly should be handled with care. Kathy told me after the life support systems were disconnected and we were all sitting and waiting.........."Just last night we were cheering the Mets. We were laughing and planning a trip to the track in Saratoga. I can't believe this........"
I learned a lot in those awful 12 hours (the hospital staff kept Bob "alive" until Jess arrived to say goodbye). I learned that I have the strength to comfort a friend in dire need; I learned that I can look death in the eye and while it still frightens and discomforts me because I know that it can take away someone I love, I know it's not the end except for here on earth; I learned that my daughter is an amazing WOMAN and no longer a "kid." I know I will be able to depend on her and her sisters if I am ever in need of them.
I've done a lot of reflection and soul searching in the last month or so but it's all led to the same old place.....the here and now. Because that's all, folks. The here and now. We need to use it wisely. Yesterday is gone; tomorrow is not yet in our grasp. I've read and re-read a wonderful book called "The Power of Now" by Eckhart Tolle, yet little did I realize how important it would become to my life when I first read it last spring. If you've never read Eckhart Tolle's books, I HIGHLY recommend them!!!
Now, about the title of this post....I have to share the story with you! Bob Reinhardt was continually amused and fascinated by the fact that I have a mini donkey which he always referred to as "Karly's ass." Bob nicknamed me "Karly" the first time we met and it just stuck. So after I got Jingle, Bob would always unfailingly greet me with, "Hey, Karly Hayden, how's yer ass?" And I would always reply, "Brown and hairy, same as always." I also like scotch so whenever we got together at the Reinhardts, Bob would have a scotch and soda waiting for me. The last time we were together, in that room at the Albany Med ICU, I rubbed Bob's shoulder as he was taking his last breaths. I told him, (with apologies to his elderly sister who had arrived at the last minute, and his niece), "Bob, I'm going to miss you buddy. But I'm going to go home and in your honor, I'm going to have a scotch and soda and I'm going to "slap" my brown hairy ass." Kathy started giggling amidst her tears and told her sister-in-law and niece the story of "Hey, Karly Hayden, how's yer ass." At the wake on Sunday, everyone in Kathy's family (who had flown in from literally all over the country) had obviously also been told that story because they all greeted me with, "Hey, Karly Hayden, how's yer ass?" I would have laughed but I was too busy crying.
Well, in my next post I'll catch you up on my clicker happenings. We've had a blast this summer!!!
Until next time..............

Love is stronger than death even though it can't stop death from happening, but no matter how hard death tries it can't separate people from love. It can't take away our memories either. In the end, life is stronger than death.

No comments:

Post a Comment