Sunday, May 6, 2012


Dawn Millen author of "Widowhood 101"
I've chosen to introduce another remarkable widow rather than talk about myself.  This woman is truly remarkable.  She was a caregiver for 20 years.  As we well know, that is a lot of work.  Not only this, she personifies her experience in a book.  A book that was a hope turned real.  "Widowhood 101" was created not only to communicate her experience, but also to assist other widows in our very situation.  More importantly, Dawn shows us that we can in fact reach for our wants and gain them.  This book was her need, her desire, her hope and her star in the sky.  Congratulations Dawn!

Dawn reached her goal and wrote a book about her first year as a widow while she was going through it.  She is just barely over her year mark.  Unlike so many books and "widow" programs out there seeking payment many of us do not have, Dawn has been generous giving it free to some groups.  I would like to recognize her on my blog.  As an E-Book she is only asking a mere 4.99 for her book.  I have been reading "Widowhood 101" and in fact almost completely finished.  With words alone I cannot impress on all of you what her book really says.  It is probably one of the better "widow" books I have ever come across.  It is written to connect with us not write at us.  We are all different.  Dawn is trying to inspire widows and widowers.  Thank-you Dawn for your generosity.

Meet Author Dawn Millen from Australia


Hello everyone, my name is Dawn and I have recently returned to writing after a break of many years due to nursing my husband and raising my family. I was widowed almost 18 months ago and now find I have the time to write again.
The book "Widowhood 101" was written during the first year and a half of widowhood and is just a few of the things I learned during this time. I hope it helps others along this journey.
The poetry in Random Rhyme is a collection of old and new poems and were written for both my own and they enjoyment of others.
I currently live with my dog on a large and untidy block of land in rural Australia. I have a busy life with my family and volunteer work with New South Wales State Emergency Service. I spend many hours writing each day with my dog curled up beside me too.
I look forward to hearing from my readers and thank you for giving me the chance to play a part in your life's journey as you are playing a part in mine.

Regards Dawn

 "Widowhood 101" by Dawn Millen

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Just a Story

Christopher Ralph, given to public domain
by author, sourced from Wiki
Do you like stories?  I have a story that reflects me back to who I am and reminds me how much my husband knew who I was.  Sometimes reflections come from nowhere and usually there is a reason.

Many years ago I worked in a public place, in a small bar, in a small town and a predominant ethnic group of which I am not.  A man came into the small bar, of the same ethnicity but perceived by many as different and foreign as I.

What intrigues me is the scene prior to my stepping in.  As I did not witness the show.  So, to me it is but a story.  This man middle aged at that time, rather handsome, walked into the bar and had offered my female coworker, a necklace.  Story goes he told her he wanted a sexual favor and when denied, he asked for a free drink.  The place was in an uproar, many many very large men.  He was thrown out.  A fair maiden, rescued from the grips of an evil dragon.

My shift, I had no idea what took place.  Against all odds, against the might of many many large men, and into the mouth of name calling whipping his the pride of his ethnicity, walked up to me with a necklace in his hand. A simple necklace.  Old.  Having a hardened leather thong and a single large piece of turquoise,  The place started to go into an uproar once again to save the fair maiden from the evil dragon.  The fair maiden prior to me was yelling in chant and saying I better not serve him.  Beyond all confusion and mayhem I held up my hand and said, "Just let me listen."

He said I want no drink.  I need you to wear this.  The men started stirring.  He looked around nervously, but continued.  I said to him, "Why do you 'need' me to wear this?"

His story:  My brother.  For my brother, he was last seen in, we'll say Timbuktu a town just below, and he was traveling to see the state, but we lost contact in Timbuktu.  My brother always kept in touch with me and my parents.  I am here from a land far away.  When we were kids we found this stone and split it, he has the other piece.  He travels to businesses such as here.  If he comes in I want him to know I am looking for him.  He will see this and know and ask you."

I took the necklace from him and the crowd enraged.  He left.  I put the necklace on.  I felt I should for a brothers love.  What if his story is true?  After all, it was his story not mine.

I proceeded with my shift and catching the rocks as they flew at me.  Rocks such as "you're giving him a free drink after we leave."  No, apparently, that will not be an issue.  The fair maiden threw another stone, "He's going to hide outside and rape you when you are leaving."  No I don't fear that as you've drawn my attention to it.  A simple call to the wonderful officers, they'll turn their lights on as I get into my car.  No problems. Another stone, "He's a liar it isn't the right stone, he lies."  What does it matter, I did not receive a gift.

The final stone, "Then why are you wearing it, why did you do this?"  Ah, because I heard his story and felt compassion.  Silence.  The stones stopped and one person said, so..what is his story?  Why would you care you would not listen.

Finally an hour before closing, one man in particular sat, the entire night, would not leave and go with friends even.  Concern was the reason.  I told him the story.  He left.  He also was the one who started the pride whipping. I hope someday he remembers this.

I return home and my husband greets me.  He got a funny look on his face and said what is this?  I smiled and said a necklace and told him the story.  He hugged me and gave me a kiss.  He said that is why I love you.  All for a brother's love huh.  Yes.

The end.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Save My Soul

It has been far too long that I have revisited the process of my grieving soul.  Do I no longer grieve?  No, this is not the way it works.  Of late I have had so many thoughts, so many events and then new curiosities presented before me.

It seems my soul is seen to be unclean.  It is seen as sinful.  It is seen as needing saved.  If it is not a knock at the door, or a call on the phone, then its an invite for coffee. Quite frankly, I know my soul.  I have much to learn.  We all have much to learn.  Being that as it may, I am very much beginning to feel as if the idea "heretic" has raised its ugly head again.  Does this mean that my life, the choices I make, at my age, through my experiences, I am now a heretic? 

I have even been invited over for coffee and to my dismay, something "special" they wanted to read to me.  Of course a very heartfelt story about how a Man of God lost his daughter on Christmas Day two years ago, devoted his life, in the name of his daughter, to save 100,000 souls or more to enter the gates of heaven.  Then I hear repeat after me...I ___ now accept Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, into my heart...

I very politely smiled and said, NO.  Not because I do not believe in God, but because I do not accept the manner in which this is being done.  Also, note, to ask me first as to whether or not I am a Christian, would be the "Christian" thing to do, rather than assuming I am a heathen.  A heretic led into a life of evil and away from my Lord God's loving arms. 

Last year many thought the world would end December 12th because we'd all go under Martial Law.  Concentrations camps have risen up throughout our godless country to persecute those who do not believe the way the government wants them to.  Seems to me disturbed individuals are providing grossly incorrect information.  At least get the date right.  It will be solstice of this year.  I say this with a smile.  Why?

I am smiling seeing, although I have risen my tyrannical character then tamed her again and again, soon will come the day when my tyranny will burst through.  I thought, in all honesty, the emotional draining, the traumas, the need to continue enjoying life and the fact I have paid a high price in life, would truly be recognized.  I believe when I am ready I AM allowed to continue on about my life, the way I deem fit.  I do not wear black, nor do I smudge my body with ashes and starve myself to death.  By the way, this trully doesn't help with the grieving process.  But to be seen as a non-spiritual human who has no faith? 

Really and honestly.  Stop and think.  I am surviving because I have faith.  I trod on because I have faith.    This overwhelming evil versus good is intense and truly, I do not want that in my life.  Not only do I have no want nor desire for receiving undeserved accusations and assumptions to my spirituality,  but also, I have the right to continue on the path I, feel is the best for me.  We do not live in another person's shoes.  Only ours. 

I am beginning to wonder if a newly released "Canon Law" has been successfully redeemed with new updated interpretations? Is this all widows need to be saved?  Or just those of us who use profanity, or joke about cooking in cauldrons, or GASP start dating again?

 Sometimes we need help, but we certainly do not need to have utter bullshit shoved in our face.  I will no longer be polite and thoughtful of others feelings when they mean to do me direct negativity.  I have learned the most valuable lesson of all, that is the word..."NO."  No, this makes me uncomfortable.  No I prefer not to discuss this.  No, I do not want to drive you around.  No, I do not want to put cash in the pot to save and help buy rations for the second coming.  I feel like I have been going through one. 

I will always have an open mind.  I have always had one.  I will never lose my ability to hear two or three sides and see meaning to all but still make my own decision. 

Thank-you for allowing me to share this with you my public journal friend.  I will now start up my outdated broom and get on with my day warts intact.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Hanging in There...

Well, ya, its been awhile.  Pretty much just settling in and getting a routine down.  Look over the month of December and see what I learned and accomplished  Quite a bit.
Survived a major domestic crisis....check
Survived a major friend "let down/hurt" ending in loss of friendship and a sum I couldn't really afford.  In short I was invited to travel and spend holidays with a friend, and that friend after I made the arrangements and double check prior to, just to be sure, then did not contact me ever again so I did not go.  First clue-when I asked for an address I received a P.O. Box....check
Recognized a manipulative situation and actually followed through with my intuition ended up being a wise choice...check
 Followed through on a plan I really committed too...check
 Spent ALL holidays alone and managed quite well...check
I find that to be enough to be a years worth of progress!  So I'm just here patting my self on the back for handling it all so well.   Biggest lesson of all, trust my intuition.  Its not wacky or off-balance; it always has been and always will be there!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Lets Get Together

Appropriate.  Forget-me-nots
How often have you heard, "hey, we should get together, give me a call!"  and they walk off.  You realize you don't have their phone number and ask for it. You put it in your phone and actually give them a call only to hear nothing on the other end.  Nothing such as no one picks up or ever call you back when you leave a message.  I've also been invited to dinner to, "get me out of the house."  Okay I'll bite, so I call and you hear a familiar voice and so you say hello.  She asks, "who is this?"  I say my name and a response of, "Well so and so is not here I will give her the message."  At this point you realize the invitation was actually wasted breath for lack of anything else to say.  How many times do we fall for this?

The other one I like is, "Oh I am so glad to see you.  Its nice to see you out.  You look good.  We need to get together.  I'll give you a call."  You're polite and say, "Oh I would love that Thank-you."  but deep in your heart you know you will never hear from this person.  Guess what, you never hear from the person.

This is what I call setting a widow up for false sense of hope that others do care and the hope that someone won't mind our company.  Unfortunately, most of us only hear from these folks if there is something involved meaning taking up your entire day, or a laying of hands to heal you.