After spending many years in nursing I retired, I thought I was done working and would spend my golden years busing myself with the hobbies I had never had time to pursue. And so it went until my husband died suddenly. Then it all began to change.
Without going into all the mundane details of the grieving process and the changes that were necessary for me to get to where I am today, I have had to get a job. Since I have been out of nursing for so long that option is not available. So I have obtained my first job in retail. I was hired at my Dollar Tree as a cashier. I had never even used a cash register. Talk about an eye opener! I had no idea that cashier meant cleaning up, sweeping the floor, stocking the drink coolers, and even wiping down the rest rooms!
I cannot believe how sloppy people are. They pick things up and walk into the next aisle and just drop it onto another shelf. Or just walk further down the same aisle and just throw it anywhere. It’s infuriating. They help themselves to anything they wish to drink or munch on and put the empty containers anywhere they can find a flat surface. The theft is unbelievable! I have this undying desire to put up this sign.
Of course the powers that be would have a stroke.
Finally I know why my daughter used to complain about shoppers when she worked in retail. It is something you would not believe unless you experience it yourself.
I am setting a new record, this is my third post in as many days. I won’t get too excited because I have no idea what tomorrow will bring. You may be wondering why this is such a “big” first for me. After all, it seems like that first should be lost to my memory. I mean, how can you compare first love to this?
This is such a big first for me because I have only been in my first apartment for less than 2 years. Some of my followers may remember me posting that I had moved in back in September 2019 but I thought I would revisit this first.
My husband and I were married for one month short of 41 years. I moved into our home from the home I grew up in. So, I had never lived on my own and it was the last thing I wanted to be doing. But, God has other plans for me. He took Gary home to Him in September 2016. I stayed in the house for a couple of years but I was in the middle of nowhere and my kids were worried about me. So after the hurricane that destroyed a large part of my home I decided to sell it.
My daughter helped me find the apartments I am living in in the city. I have been making it my own since I moved in. I have to tell you though, it is a bit of a struggle, at least at first it was. I was now living away from all of the people I had made friends with. I had to change my church because I am over an hour away from it. I don’t have my quilt guild that I had been a member of since 2005. So I have become a master of adjustments.
What I have gained is my grandchildren are less than 10 minutes away and I see them several times a week. Both of my daughters are close by so we see each other more often. I can walk to the grocery store if I feel like it. I have wonderful neighbors. I can sew when I want, do my photography when I want and do nothing if I want.
I think that the biggest take away from this situation that was forced upon me is that I now know I can do it. I am happy, I am busy, and I am no longer afraid to be alone. Believe me that is the big one. There are so many benefits that I never thought of. I don’t have to compromise over the color of my furniture, or what I want to make for supper. And I get to live in the city, although it’s not a big city, where I can go to the theatre and out to dinner when I want. Something Gary would never do. I guess we get these benefits to help us adjust. Believe me, I would so much rather have my Gary back with me, but since I can’t I have chosen to accept my life as it is and be happy.
Now before you get ahead of me, let me just say that my very first boyfriend was Michael Macalusso. He lived behind me in Levittown in the 1950’s. I am trying to remember how old I was when I discovered him as a love interest. I moved away from there in 1959 when I was 8 years old, and he moved away to New York before that. So, true love bloomed when I was somewhere between 4 and 7. I have measured every boyfriend since against my first love. He was handsome, kind, generous with his toys, and a gentleman.
I remember when he was going to make his First Holy Communion. We were going to make it at the same time, but he was what we referred to as a Public while I was a Catholic. No, we were both of the Roman Catholic Faith, it’s just that Michael went to public school and I went to St. Mike’s. He had to practice after school whereas I practiced for it during my school day. I am not sure why that made such an impression on me.
We played together all the time. Our yards joined with the rest of the houses into a huge horseshoe that made the best playground ever. We never had to cross the street or even walk on the sidewalks if we didn’t want to. You couldn’t ask for a better back yard system.
In the winter our dad’s would make a big tunnel with a hut at each of our yards out of the snow. What fun we had. Today it wouldn’t fly. The dangers of such a system would prevent anyone from creating such a fun place. I feel bad that our society has become so sue conscience. Now, our dad’s always instructed us in safety practices for us to follow while we were playing in the tunnels. They also checked them each day for safety. And after a certain date we were all forbidden to enter them. The days would be getting too warm causing the tunnels to collapse. No one ever thought about disobeying our parents because we knew we would get a spanking and be forbidden to play outside again until the tunnels were gone. In the summer we had little pools in the yards and we played hide and seek, mother may I and on the swingsets.
Michael and I would spend our days playing and sharing and just talking. He was the first person I ever laid in the grass with just watching the sky to see what the clouds would form. Special times.
I often wonder whatever became of Michael. We visited him a couple of times after his move to New York, but eventually our families lost touch with each other. My heart was broken when I didn’t see him anymore. I still find myself thinking of the handsome dark haired boy who lived behind me who was my first love.
I have been absent again… I know, what else is new? But I have again decided that I want to write on my blog. I used to really like the subjects that were posted by wordpress when I started my blog here. It was easier for me to keep writing. It’s when that stopped that I began to shy away from blogging. So, in attempt to get back into the swing of things I think I have come up with a plan.
I am going to give each month a category. For instance April is going to be about firsts. Specifically my firsts. My first dance, or my first boyfriend, or my first child. You get the idea. I am not sure that I will necessarily cover all of my firsts, just the ones that seem especially memorable.
Today I will be writing about the first time I am doing clothes alterations for someone beside myself. A neighbor of mine, also in the healthcare field, asked me if I could do some clothes alterations for her. Being the good neighbor that I am (granted that is just my opinion) I said yes. We picked a time for her to come over so that I could fit her for the alterations.
I no sooner hung up the phone when I began to panic! Am I good enough to do this for someone other than a member of my family? Will she hate the outcome? You know all the self doubting that goes along with the first time you attempt something new.
Well, the fitting went well. At least until she told me she had a gown she wanted fitted for her wedding. She and her husband are renewing their vows. All of a sudden my head began to pound and buzz and all I could think about was what if I ruin this dress. Lavonne being the sweet southern belle she is said “Don’t worry about it, I got it on Amazon and its was not expensive. Besides, you will do a wonderful job.” With confidence like that I just said OK.
Because they are not completed yet, I will have to post the outcome after they are completed. I do after all have some experience with a needle and thread and a sewing machine. I have altered my own clothes, and those of my kids. So, hopefully I will still have a good neighborly relationship with Lavonne after this first is in my past.