Sunday, 29 March 2015

Yes or No

Why is it so hard to make a decision?  One day I think I know the answers and the next day that answer is the opposite.

Two things have been on my mind in the last couple of days the first one is "Should we get a dog"?  Both of my little boys are desperate for a puppy.

Adam was quite adamant that we were not going to get a pet, mainly because we were often away from home.  Not just  with work/school but with travel too.  We were always planning getaways big and small and it would  just be too hard to do so with a dog.  Another reason was, no fence in the back yard, the next reason, "who will pick up the poo"?  (Certainly not me).  I now find myself in a situation where I do not envisage the boys and I going away quite so much and if we do it wont be camping in a remote National Park (where domestic animals are not welcome).  The fencing problem has been sorted out by my very own local backyard blitz team who came and measured up a little dog run at the side of my house with a gate at either end so that the doggy can have a safe play zone. Oh, and even the poo problem has been solved because both the boys have said they will do poo patrol.  The walking, cuddling and playing with the dog will never be a problem because we all want to do that.  I've watched my boys over the last 5 weeks interact with family members and friends pets and when they are cuddling those dogs they both have a stillness around them that is comforting to them and it's comforting to me see.  So I think it would be in the best interest of our family to find a little lap dog to cuddle.  I may well have just made a decision. (I will try not to think of the expense)

The second decision that is keeping me awake at night is do I go back to work?  When is it the right time?  Is there ever a right time?  On Saturday night I had convinced myself that I would go back to work. "It would be good for me" I said confidently to my sister.  "I would be strong enough", I said out loud.  Then all day Sunday and even today I am feeling anxious about the commitment that is work.  I don't think I can make that commitment because when the days come (and I know they will) that I can barely move or one of my children is so overcome with grief that I physically cannot go to work I will feel stressed about letting down my work place and the families that I teach and that is just too stressful for me right now.  I need to be home for the boys, I want to be home for me, I have a fair bit of "stuff" to sort out and go through and I think I just need more time. I think I just made another decision.



This blog is so good for me on so many levels and it  helps me to stay grounded.  I am grateful that you are reading it and sending me such positive feedback.  Thank you.  I will finish now with this little prayer from the ever insightful Michael Leunig.

xx Jodie

Dear God,

Give comfort to those who are separated from loved ones. May the ache in their hearts be the strengthening of their hearts. May their longing bring resolve to their lives, conviction and purity to their love. Teach them to embrace their sadness lest it turn to despair. Transform their yearning into wisdom. Let their hearts grow fonder.

Amen.

SOURCE: 'A Common Prayer' by Michael Leunig,


Thursday, 26 March 2015

Birthdays

Today was the first of many firsts to come.  Today was my birthday, the first one without Adam for 18 years.  After the previous two days of feeling slightly normal I came crashing back to Earth with a whopping thud!  I don't know how long I cried for up in my bedroom before I fell into a fitful sleep but the exhaustion of it just overcame me and I could resist it no longer.

My afternoon did get better with a stroll to the beach with a couple of bottles of Moet and a couple of beautiful girlfriends.  We sat on the sand and sipped our bubbles, went for a quick dip in the sea and ate smoked salmon and king prawns.  Not a shabby birthday feast I must say.  When my boys arrived home from school they came bounding up the beach to plant a nice big birthday kiss on each cheek.  I love them so much.  I missed Adam ALOT today and thought of him constantly.  I imagined his big strong arms around me giving me a huge birthday hug and I would have given anything for it to be real.  Sometime when I let myself get lost in my imagination and search my mind for some/any memory of him the heaviness in my chest takes my breath away.  My head pounds and my stomach churns with the desire to have him back and the emptiness that comes with the realisation that its never going to happen no matter how much I wish for it is overwhelming  I realise that that big beautiful man is never going to wrap his arms around me again and then I cry. 


I've been processing a lot this week in regards to what is happening to me, and the incredible amount of support that I am still receiving from so many caring and thoughtful people and I am having a few pangs of guilt.  I have some girl friends and family members who are going through marriage separations and although they have not lost their husbands through a tragedy like I have they have still lost a husband/partner in another way.  Like me the are now single parents, one income, children to raise, work to attend, bills to pay, mortgages to worry about and generally having to keep on trudging through life, but they are doing it without the same support that I am getting.  I feel for them and watch in wonder as they face their own day to day battles.  Most of these woman have all been a huge part of my healing through their thoughtful acts of kindness.  I am truly blessed to have such amazing beautiful women that I can call my friends and who I can call sister.

xx Jodie

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Questions?

I've been wondering these last few days whether or not to continue with this blog, it's scary sitting down to type how I feel, most nights I don't even know what I'm going to write.  I don't care who reads it, its more about me getting out how I feel.  Some might think that would be better in a personal journal but I write differently in journals.  When I write my blog , believe it or not it's a more honest words to paper kind of thought process maybe because I can type as fast as I can think (almost),  I certainly can't write that fast so it comes out more raw I suppose.   I know its been almost a week since my last post but that is one of the reasons why.

I've been debating with myself whether or not I should continue with "Over the Rim of my Glass".   Really? How much do people want to hear?  I looked on my stats before I started tonight and so far there have been 6756 people who at some point read my blog.  That astounds me!  I also am very new to blogging, in fact I've never even followed one myself so that number may be small in the world of blogging,  I don't know?  But to me that number still is astounding.  

So any way, where was I?  Its been quite the roller coaster ride since my last post, mostly downs and not many ups.  My kids (particularly Joel) have not been great.   I've been on a consistent wobbly course with very little direction.  I had my first vomit since Adam passed away and then I had a remarkably stressful (Centerlink rejection) then peaceful day today.

Last week my eldest son Joel was writhing around on the floor complaining of tummy cramps.  I thought he was transferring his grief to his gut and was thankful that there were less tears but concerned at the intensity of the cramps .  It turns out he had a gastro bug which eventuated in raging temperatures, vomiting and diarrhoea (great mum I am hey?)  So needless to say he spent zero days at school last week whilst my youngest Reef pulled up his socks, put on a brave face and carried on.  Then I question myself by asking if that is an OK thing, "should Reef be crying more"?

By Friday afternoon Joel was well again and we took a little road trip down to Coffs Harbor to help celebrate my brother in laws 50th birthday.......what an emotionally draining night that was, but I am so glad that we went.  It was nice to just hang out, cry, and reminisce about some of the wonderful moments that we've all had with Adam.  I actually didn't drink much that night but by Sunday morning it all got too much and I had an uncontrollable urge to vomit! And I did.   I wondered if it was the same gastro bug that Joel had or if it was all just getting too much for me and I just couldn't stomach it any more.  I think it was the later.........

Grief like this is something I've never experienced in my life before.  I've lost elderly  Grandparents and a very small number of friends but I have been fortunate in my life that I have never had to bury someone whose death ripped my heart out and shattered it into a million pieces.    My heart aches as I write this even imagining having to go through it again. 

Why Adam?    Why did this happen to me?  Why are we here? Why? Why? Why?. 

I've actually had a not bad 24 hours in fact the second half of today was probably the best half a day yet.  I hope its as good tomorrow, and that I've just not been comfortably in denial today.

Today, I managed with the help of two amazing, beautiful and insightful friends to feel close to Adam, like he was really here  and to actually feel him around me for the first time since he passed away. I am so grateful.  I feel like I spent the morning with him,  I even made him a cup of coffee and sat on our deck (we loved to drink coffee there) drinking it with him and it was good.  The moment was calm and I felt at ease for the first time in a long time. 

The boys came home from school and Joel was clearly distressed, we lay on his bed and chatted about Adam in a way that was happy and light and I managed to ease him gently out of his grief and into a place of joy.  The boys and I went for a walk on the beach and talked in a way that we haven't talked since the 19th February and actually had a peaceful, even if somewhat sombre stroll along the waters edge and up to the wetlands to water Adams tree, and we were OK.

I know my life has changed dramatically, my heart is truly aching as I write this post, its a physical dull ache but I refuse to fall into the abyss - I am tethered to this life for my children and to honour Adam and the life he helped create for us.  I will survive because I have amazing, strong wilful, and loving family and friends who are creating the most amazing safety net around me.  And I have Angels who I know are there, including Adam who has the biggest set of white wings wrapped around the boys and I and  I have no doubt that we will be OK. 

xx Jodie

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Carry a big stick - a book review

This wonderful piece has been written by my wonderful friend Kylie.  She is a very wise woman and I love her to bits.  So tonights guest blog is all about her book review of Tim Fergusons book "Carry a big stick"  Enjoy. xx


Book Review: Carry A Big Stick

Back when Jodie started her Febfast journey, she was worried about having to blog every day. When Mary did her guest post, I asked Jodie if she would like me to do one too. I write a book review blog called Little Black Marks  so it only seemed appropriate that I find a book about MS and write a review of it.

While cruising the catalogue at the library, I came across Carry a Big Stick by Tim Ferguson. I knew the name, I'm a long time fan of The Doug Anthony Allstars, but I never realised Tim Ferguson has MS. Perfect! A book about MS written by someone I actually wanted to read about!


Doug Anthony Allstars – Tim Ferguson, Richard Fidler and Paul McDermott


Carry a Big Stick charts Tim career, from his pre DAAS days, right through to the writing of the book. While the MS doesn't take centre stage, it does make appearances every now and then. Obviously to start with, Ferguson himself did not realise there was a problem. He simply put it down the grueling schedule DAAS kept. Anyway, things usually righted themselves within a week or two. However, as symptoms worsened (numbness in fingers, pins and needles in his right ear, loss of his ability to wiggle his ears, twitching eyelid, numb toes - you get the picture), Ferguson simply didn't want to know - didn't want to acknowledge his body was letting him down.  

"I started each one [show] strongly but after half an hour of running, jumping and jitterbugging, my left leg would slacken. By the end onf each show, my left foot was dragging...I never recorded these events or sought answers. It's only now that I look back and piece everything together that it all makes sense"

"I'm often asked why I didn't see a doctor or seek some sort of conclusive medical advice along the way. The answer is simple: I didn't want to know. I didn't want anything getting in the way of the Allstars' success...I just kept going and compensated for any weird body malfunction with exuberant disregard."

However, eventually Ferguson does seek and receives a diagnosis. He continues with Allstars', until it becomes obvious to him he no longer can. The rest of the book details his acceptance of MS and the other directions his career took, from hosting shows such as Don't Forget Your Toothbrush, writing, producing and eventually teaching.

Ferguson writes exactly how you imagine he would. The flamboyance and silliness so obvious in his Allstars days comes through in the book. He examines the effect of a transient lifestyle as a kid on his life as an adult and it's contribution towards his incessant need to be liked and successful.  

The tone of the book changes through out, following his own journey in relation to MS. From the early mentions of MS in the book, through to his denial there was anything wrong, onto his diagnosis and his belief that it should change nothing, followed by his realisation that it does and his acceptance of MS, Ferguson becomes more reflective, analytical and, for want of a better word, serious. I found the first part of the book that dealt with his DAAS days, frantic and quick paced. It jumped from one thing to another, with slight mentions of what was causing a few issues, but was under control. As the MS progressed, the writing became less frantic, but an air of confusion and hurt came through - and denial. Finally as Ferguson accepted his diagnosis and it's effect on his life, the writing becomes calmer and thoughtful.


Tim Ferguson in recent years

Carry a Big Stick is well worth the read for any DAAS or Tim Ferguson fan. For those looking for an understanding of MS, it provides a look at one persons journey with the disease. Either way, I think it's well worth the read.

This clip is from the TV show Good News Week and was the first time Tim publically “outted himself” with MS.


Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Vitamin Sea

I realise it has been a while since I last blogged - Its just been too hard to do.  Friday was a good day but then it just spiralled down hill from there over the weekend and into the beginning of this week.

On paper it sounds pretty good, my sister and her adorable two cherubs came to visit on Saturday and the two of us went out into town to see a play ( a silly play at that) and although it was a great hour of distraction, something happens when you fall back to reality with a thud,  it's almost like the grief doubles.  On Sunday my brother and his wife came with a picnic for all of us and we sat on the beach eating and swimming and kicking the football.  Nice right?  In a normal existence, yes!

I let the boys have Monday off school so that they could hang with their cousins but as the day moved on, the clouds  got blacker and the air thicker for all of us.  

I actually ended up at the Doctors yesterday after a weekend of little sleep and too much wine.  The wine really doesn't help in fact it only adds to the depression and loneliness that is my life right now.  It doesn't matter how many hugs I get, how many phone calls or texts I get to see if I'm OK or how many knowing nods I get from friendly faces.  The heaviness is over bearing.  Seeing Joel so distraught as he lies in the foetal position hugging a photo of Adam crying "why, why, why" Is so unbearable.  I struggle to calm him down and I wish that I could take his pain away while Reef on the other hand is being Mr Strong;  he is doing his best to hold it together and this morning when I told him that it's OK to cry, he told me "I can't cry mummy, but I'm really sad inside and it just really hurts in my throat".  My 9 year old doesn't need to be the strong one, neither does my 11 year old for that matter.  Adam was our strong one and we all miss him so much. I some how need to find it within me to become the strong one.

My visit to the Doctor resulted in a prescription for sleeping tablets (I refused antidepressants)  and as a result, I slept through last night and actually woke up feeling capable of facing the world again.  Unfortunately for me it wasn't so for Joel who was too distraught for school and so both boys had yet another day off.  We started our morning off with a stroll down to our beach which has fondly become known as "Bowden Beach" (in our house hold anyway) for a delightful high tide swim and our daily dose of vitamin sea to wash away the sadness.

Then instead of hanging around the house moping and feeling sorry for ourselves, we ventured out to beautiful Wellington Point and had fish a chips for lunch and a lovely walk on the beach.  Just what the doctor ordered, much better than anti-depressants. 

So right know as I sit here talking to you, I feel OK.  Joel is downstairs lost in the TV and Reef has found a friend and gone fishing off the old jetty.  Its his favourite place to be.  I will try and carry on.  I will try and be brave even though I am afraid of the 5 stages of grief that a friend pointed out to me last night.  Its going to be a long, scary painful journey but I know that the only way out of it is to ride the waves and after a dumping in the sand I need to push myself to the surface and breath again.

xx Jodie

Friday, 13 March 2015

One more time x


Oh to be here just one more time, to nibble on his ear and tell him I love him.











Today was actually an OK day, I'm still breathing.  One of my very good friends rang me up and said "I'm taking you out for lunch!  Somewhere nice!  Where should we go?"  The first place that sprang to mind was Sirromet Winery.  I've never been there before and after living in the area for over 10 years that is pretty pathetic that I've never been and so it was the perfect place to be. 

It was so lovely.  We sat down and had a beautiful lunch and an equally beautiful bottle of wine and talked like there was nothing wrong.   For a moment or two I even forgot my woes.......and it was nice.     Life does go on, life moves forward like a tide ebbing and flowing and all the "stuff" just comes and goes.  For me, my "stuff" stays with me but for the rest of the world, life just keeps turning.  Life must go back to "normal".  Is there such a thing?  What is normal?  I was such a rule follower, an etiquette instiller, but now, I don't know the rules......I'm confused, lost and disorientated.  What does that mean?  I don't even know.

I'm trying to make life "normal" for my kids.  Both of them have friends having a sleep over tonight with a friend each.  They are happy, here is laughter in the house again.  The distraction of friendship is a marvellous thing.  I on the other hand will be sleeping in my bed on my own for the very first time since Adam passed away and I have to admit I'm a little bit anxious.   I think I may have to take my mother up on her offer of a sleeping tablet. 

Wow, my life is so different.  Scary......

I know I will wake up each day, I will make the school lunches, I will take opportunity in Saturday morning sleep ins, I will do the washing, I will vacuum the floors and clean the toilets......that's just life and that's the easy bit.  The hard bit will be planning camping trips, Easters, birthdays and school holidays.  Without Adam, even though I know its possible and doable, its just more difficult.  But it will happen, it may not happen over night, but it will happen.  I believe that.  I have to.

The last two days have been a disaster, horrible and very distressing but I woke up this morning and put my big girl knickers on, shook my head, had a cold shower got dressed and did my best at living.  And it was a better day than yesterday, so tomorrow I will attempt to do the same.  I've been taking my own advice and taking myself and my kids (and my mother) down to the beach for our daily dose of Vitamin Sea and it is working a treat, I tell them "we need to wash the sadness away".   Tomorrow will be no different, we will venture down in the howling wind and immerse ourselves in salt water.

Remember always.  to hold your loved ones close and never be afraid to say "I love you". 

xxx  Jodes 


Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Bathe the wound with salt

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-EKyE53aXErU/ThG5o_mdwnI/AAAAAAAAAYw/jzyLKB4ra5c/s320/michaelleunigheartisbroken.jpg

When the heart
Is cut or cracked or broken,
Do not clutch it;
Let the wound lie open.
Let the wind
From the good old sea blow in
To bathe the wound with salt,
And let it sting.
Let a stray dog lick it,
Let a bird lean in the hole and sing
A simple song like a tiny bell,
And let it ring.

Michael Leunig


What a shit day it was today!  I crawled out of bed this morning to get the boys ready for school and it took every inch of my being to make them breakfast and pack their school lunches.  Thankfully my Mum drove them to school which, enabled me to climb wearily back into my bed and under my blanket.

The ache in my chest and nausea in my belly was almost unbearable.  I struggled to fall back to sleep and so instead tossed and turned my self and my bedding into a knot.   Such a dreadful state to be in.  I eventually managed to drag myself out of bed around 10am but felt the sadness follow me all around the house, I couldn't escape it no matter what I did.  It wasn't until my beautiful sister and mother dragged me to the beach to go for a swim that I slowly eased out of my depression.

Salt water immersion is a remedy for everything and my advice to myself is to plunge deep below the water every day to clear my head and wash away my sadness even if it is just for a brief moment in time before the train of despair comes barrelling towards me once again.

The poem above was given to me by  a very dear friend who dropped in this afternoon just to check on me.  I love the words "to bathe the wound with salt, and let it sting"   I love these words because when I feel the sting in my heart, it is that pain that makes me feel closest to Adam.,  When it stings its when I'm thinking about him and the life we lived together and how our book of love has been re-written.  And the new chapters are yet to be written.

x Jodie

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Contemplations

The last two days have been a blur of depression - It just hit me like a train ploughing through my shoulder blades straight through my heart and out my chest on the other side.  I think Thursday was the worst with headaches nausea and a 2 hour sleep at 11am.  On Friday an amazing group of my beautiful girlfriends came together and we did a Puja for Adam (a meditation and chant) which was beautiful.  There were lots of tears at the end a glass of wine and walk on the beach in the fullest of moons to throw copious amounts of flower petals into the water and say good bye.  It was sad, happy and a little uplifting even if that moment only lasted a little while.  I can't imagine that squeeze around my heart ever releasing, I think its always going to be there.  I can only hope that in time the pressure will release and I will relax again.  I feel like a robot on auto pilot.  Everyday is a new day with a new sun rise but it still hurts.

I realised my childrens pain a little more on Saturday when we went to one of their friends birthday parties.  My two precious little boys held back when we arrived staying close to my side and not wanting to join in the party shenanigans.  There were pool games and soccer games, chocolate cake and lollies but they weren't interested in anything but staying close to me and as I looked around all the beautiful faces of the little children playing so carefree and happy in the sunshine kicking balls and bomb diving, my two were just little blank canvases, their faces dead pan.  It broke my heart a little more (if that is possible).  I wasn't in the best frame of mind myself and I struggled to keep it together while holding them firm. 

Eventually, the boys ventured into the pool and joined in the soccer game and of course after an hour or two they were playing and smiling, not laughing but smiling. It's  a start right?  Its a tough gig this death thing........


I got to spend this morning at Duranbah Beach, I grew up on the Tweed Coast and spent a lot of time at D'Bah and Rainbow Bay, it really is a special part of the world and I have so many wonderful memories of playing on that very same beach when I was just a kid.   While I was there watching my kids frolic in the waves I did a lot of contemplating and daydreaming of the past when life was better.  I was wondering about my life and the future of my children.  I didn't really come up with anything Earth shattering but I enjoyed the moment of being there with my boys and their friends.   It was tough standing on that beach and asking over and over why this happened? Why my dreams have been shattered? What is the meaning of it all?  As I watched the surfers catching waves and the little groms dropping in all I could think of was who was going to teach my boys the rules of surfing and when "not" to drop in.

I am so lucky to be surrounded by so many strong women who have helped me and are continuing to help me through this devestating time in my life.   After my beach frolic, I had a very casual but important (for my stress levels to go down) coffee date with two beautiful girl friends who just happen to be an accountant and a financial advisor and they have given me a direction to plan for the future which I am very grateful for....Thank you girls.

I know that life will be ok eventually and that life will continue to go on.  One of the most painful thoughts that always brings me undone is when I think about the future and its not just about money and where it will comes from but when i think about life itself with Adam not in it.  I can't imagine living like we did without him here,  I know I will "live" but I won't live my life that was a life so full of life now that he is not here because he is what filled my life with life and love and fun and adventure.

xx Jode


Thursday, 5 March 2015

Full moon rising


 


Its a full moon tonight, its at least 34 degrees, I've spent a good part of today at Centerlink getting nowhere fast.  My children had their first day back at school, Reef made it till the last bell (just) but Joel didn't make the first bell.  What a traumatic day.  Thank the good Lord for friends because if I didn't have them holding my hand, making phone calls to check up on me and bringing me bottles of wine I would be more of a mess than I currently am.
 
My crystals are bathing in the moonlight as we speak, the sweat is running down my brow and behind my knees and I'm getting over the demoralising experience that is inevitably Centerlink.  My boys have dusted themselves off and have both agreed that they will give school another go tomorrow  but maybe I will have to pick them at lunch time (just in case its too much for them).  I enjoyed the wine with my friend and even had a gin and tonic with mum and I'm doing OK (just)

I have friends looking after my financial affairs, friends looking after my well being, family looking after my health and my children holding my heart close to theirs.

I can survive, I will survive.  My children will continue to breath and keep taking those steps that are oh so difficult every day.  We will get out of bed each day, we will nourish our bodies, we will love with all our being.  Adam will be proud.  Adam will be with us.  Adam will hold us close.

In the words of Monty Python (Adam loved them)

"If life seems jolly rotten
There's something you've forgotten
And that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing.
When you're feeling in the dumps
Don't be silly chumps
Just purse your lips and whistle - that's the thing."



Well I'm pretty crap at whistling and I don't feel much like dancing or singing but I will keep trying to find the beauty in life and the sunshine in every day.   I can't help but sing the first two lines of the next verse of the above song (Bright side of life) which is

"Life's a piece of shit
When you look at it"



Life sure is confusing if nothing else.  I never would have thought that my beautiful life would come to such a dramatic halt.  I'm still numb and don't think I have truly accepted that Adam isn't coming home.

I am feeling so overwhelmed by my community, the kindness, love and support during this time of grief and sadness had been over whelming.  The generosity shown to us has been so humbling and there are no words big enough that I can find that can express my thanks.
  
I knew how exceptional Adam was, he was my husband, my best friend and partner for life......I just wish I had him for a while longer. However, I did not know just how much he touched the lives of so many others.  It makes me all the more proud to have been his wife, what a privileged for me.

I know that life is going to be tough now, I know its going to be a challenge but I also know that I have a strong safety net that is keeping me and my boys safe.

Cheers

Jodie

ps:  I'm going to have another G&T to try and cool down - do yourself a favour and go pour yourself a drink......for Adam xx










Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Breath Jodie

Well, that storm I told you about sure did come.  It came in a big way! It came, it conquered and it ripped my heart from my chest and turned my brain to mush.  It's been 13 days since my last post and about 10 days since I failed FebFast.  I failed because, on Thursday the 19th February 2015 my life came to an almighty stop.  My world ended.  The police came to work.  They told me Adam had died.

My beloved husband, my everything, my love.  You see he had a heart condition called Hyper-trophic, obstructive, cardio-myopathy.  Heart disease.  A hereditary condition.  Adam was diagnosed two years ago and hated his cardiologist for telling him that he could no longer be active, he could no loner lift heavy things, he could no longer surf, he could no longer wrestle with his two beautiful little boys (he ignored that order), he could no longer run, he could no longer get his heart rate up ever!  He hated his cardiologist and got a second opinion from another cardiologist at the same practise who told him exactly what the first cardiologist told him.  Adam hated him too.  He then sought a third opinion from a different practise and Cardiologist,  who told him she couldn't find any evidence of Cardio-Myopathy.  Adam loved her!

He had a new lease on life again; he lost weight, he started exercising, he started surfing, and he started running.......... That was November 2014.  Then it happened, on Thursday the 19th of February  he took his blood pressure at 9:30am (it was better than most peoples) and took himself off for a run..............at about 11:45am the police were at my work giving me the worst news any loving wife could ever imagine; that my one and only,  the love of my life had collapsed and had passed away. Quickly, suddenly and without a sound.

The next two hours were a blur.  I remember the rain, I remember the tears, I remember the gut wrenching howls as my managers at work tried in vain to comfort me.  What the fuck was I going to do?  How on Earth was I going to survive?  What words would I use to tell my beautiful little boys (9yrs & 11yrs) that their amazing dad would not be coming home tonight?  How do I survive?

My life has changed irrevocably.  I can't imaging how I'm going to make it to Easter.  I wake up each day and my mantra is "one day at a time Jodie,"  "Just keep breathing Jodie", "one foot in front of the other Jodie".  And I do.....that's all I do.  When my children break down, I hold them.  When I break down, they hold me and rub my back and tell me "one day at a time Mummy, deep breaths Mummy".  "We will be OK, Mummy".  But will we?

Adam was our compass, Adam was our anchor, Adam was the wind in our sails....He made the adventures happen, he kept us living.  He was an incredible man and I feel so blessed that he was my husband even if it was for too short a time.  We were married for 15 years, together for 18 and it only felt like 3.  It was over before it had begun......there was so much more to do.

Needless to say, FebFast was an epic fail.  I fell off the waggon on Sunday the 22nd February.......I didn't go to the wedding, I didn't go to the 18th.   I was hiding under my blankets snuggling my dear little children but on the Sunday my mother urged me to have a glass of wine - I thought about saying no, but I also thought it would help ease the pain.  It didn't.  It still hurt and it still hurts now.

I don't really know why I'm writing this blog, but my amazing friend Sam thought it would be good for me, and she is a wise woman, so I took her advice and just went blurgh!  So here I am.  She also set up along with my beautiful Mary my very own Go fund me page (who would have thought).  Here is the link, and it is also in the top right of this page.  So far the love, kindness and compassion has been heart warming. Team Bowden


Thank you and

Cheers Jodie x