Booth for One – CHAPTER TWO

Hello, loyal readers. I’m back. 🙂

There’s so much to say. So much to share. Many of my followers are also my Facebook friends, so there won’t be many surprises here as I’ve been regularly posting on Facebook.

Throughout that time, I realized that I needed to take my pain and my challenges off Facebook and move them to a bit of a more remote spot. My FB audience and my blog audience are two different intended recipients.

For those Facebook friends, I apologize as most likely, the next few posts are going to be a repeat for you. But it’s important to my walk through this life that I recount it in my way. I’m hoping it will help me continue to process.

Because I’m not okay.

I know it’s OKAY to not be okay. I know that. But I’m really not okay. I’m overwhelmingly sad and my grief actually seems to be intensifying. I’ve lost touch with the widow blogs I follow, and need to get back to them because they TRULY are such a valuable resource. I hope to become that resource one day as well. I hate that I will need to, but I hope I’m doing this right. Because if future widows are anything like me, reading a real and raw and honest story from someone who has been there themselves, might save their lives.

Chapter Two is my Life in the Dominican Republic.

Alone for the first time in my life, DR for the first time in my life, and a WHOLE 180 from anything I was living just a few months ago. I am working on writing this out in a way that makes sense; the things that have happened that have led me to where I am today – physically, mentally, emotionally, geographically, and spiritually. There is a lot of humor in my tales, that’s for sure. But it’s not all funny. Just as always, it’s going to be a bipolar swing of writing styles and moods because I write true to myself in that moment. And always, when things are funny, I turn to tell him and he’s not there. When there’s overwhelming sadness, pain, and loneliness, I turn to him for comfort and he’s not there. It’s not for lack of company. It’s him I miss.

We used to talk and half-joke that for both of our sakes, he had better die first. We both thought if I were to die and he were left alone, he would crumble into a tiny ball. Maybe even end his life. Man, how wrong we were. I think back to very trying times; the loss of his mother and my father, the loss of countless loved pets. And in those moments, he made me proud with this strength. When the chips were down, when there was conflict or disagreements, when someone needed a hand, this unassuming gentle guy became a force to be reckoned with. He had a beautiful talent for being strong and converting into a mountain when a mountain was needed.

And I gotta tell you, I think he would have handled losing me better than I have handled losing him. Gone is the strong bad-ass woman who could overcome anything.  Recently some memories came up on FB that took me back to a time when I really liked who I was. I looked at those memories and thought, man that was my time. I felt alive and fulfilled. And I was killing myself.  I remember coming home from that trip and throwing up for two days because I was exhausted. And he was there. And when I said I was going again 10 days later, he didn’t flinch. He knew it was what I had to do.

Looking at those memories made me proud and sad at once. All of a sudden I feel like an old woman looking back on a younger stronger me. But the memories were only 2 years ago. And it reminded me. That Lisa died. She’s in the urn with him. And I miss her. I miss her because she would have handled this better in some way or been stronger. I think she would have made him proud.

Until next blog very soon, thanks for reading. I hope you come back.

Peace,

~ Lisa

 

Shock & Awe Campaign

Hello! This post is LOOOOONGGGGG. Grab a beverage.

Wow, SO much to write about. I’m in the Dominican Republic – YAY!!! This is my first day with internet!

The trip
The trip started off really nice, a beautiful sunrise at MSP airport. Then all hell broke loose. One of my bags was too heavy so I was the girl at the check-in counter with all my shit spread out on the floor, taking things out of my suitcase to throw away. Meanwhile, the airline dog travel nazi lady was ogling the kennel with Cass and Bella. Walking around it. Calling over her peers. Whispering. Shaking their heads. And all my shit is still on the floor as I take things out, weigh the suitcase again, take more things out, weigh the suitcase again. The culprit? My desktop computer. It got a little banged up but it’s working and all is well!

Airline dog travel nazi approaches me and says that two dogs can only travel in one kennel if they are puppies. I say, oh I thought it was a weight thing – not an age thing. Mark steps in and surely enough we were right – but my two dogs were “stuffed” in the bag “like tacos” lol. Nazi lady felt that if I just took out the SUPER THIN blanket, that would suffice. 🙄

MEANWHILE, I’ve gathered all of my things, selected the stuff I have to get rid of, and I’m looking for a trash can. Dog airline nazi lady asks me something, and I tell her I’m so sorry I’m just frazzled. I just lost my husband, I’m moving to a new country. She then says “omg he just told us that too (Mark). We don’t want you to have to lose anything else. We’re going to get you a bag for that stuff, and you take it on the plane. We’ll call ahead to let them know.” Cool! Super cool, yeah? But wait for it…

It was a black trash bag. I carried it to the gate, sat with it, looked at it, pondered on it, and decided I wasn’t going to be the person shlepping across the world through airports with a trash bag. So the stuff got tossed regardless. And then come to find out Mark’s shirt was inside out all day…so really, I’m super glad I didn’t take the trash bag because then we would have been THOSE people. Instead, it was just MARK that was those people so I’m good. 😂 In nice news, airline nazi lady called ahead and Mark and I got to preboard the last flight from MIA to POP.

Dogs did great, no issues at all. And we’re all here and settled!

All at the front door!
It was SOOOOO good to see Rosie. She’s showing everyone the ropes.
Chilling after a dip in the pool

The House
The house is awesome! The only complaint I have is that it’s made for or by giants. The closets, cabinets, and even the mirrors in the bathrooms are made for GIANTS. Why is there a chair in my bathroom? Because the mirrors are so high, I need to stand on it to check my business.

Tall? I feel kinda discriminated against #shortpeopleproblems
Closets are at LEAST 10′ tall!
So I can see myself in the mirror. 😀
Nothing will ever be in that cabinet. Just saying.

Debbie is a badass. I mean, yeah. I built an entire shed in a day. I thought I was pretty damn handy. But I had NEVER drilled concrete before. We mounted a TV and had the cable company come out, but the TV won’t stay on. LOL But MAN! That drill is something! Debbie has been over about 712 times so far helping with the hiccups. I think they bother her more than they bother me.

Rawr!

Having a pool is so cool. When I got here, there had been some electrical issues, so it was green. Debbie shocked it (along with shocking the tadpoles and almost frogs) and in just a day it looked like this! Bella and Cass BOTH walked right into it the first day, like they didn’t know it was water. Turns out, both of them are great swimmers! Since then, I have to watch like a hawk if Bella is out there. She can’t see much and it scares me a little.

I’m no animal biologist, but that ain’t no tadpole. That’s almost a FROG. Sorry buddy.
What a difference a day makes!

So many “weird” things to get used to. Here’s some interesting stuff about living here!
– You can’t drink the water! Bottled water. Even for brushing your teeth.

This is a switch that tells me if street power is on. It goes out frequently. I have backup power that kicks in if that happens, but I watch the light to make sure. If the street power is out, I need to try and conserve energy while I’m on the battery backups.

The Life
I’ve only been here a few days so I have a lot to learn and see! First there is a sticky frog. It’s about as wide and as long as three fingers. Debbie said they’re harmless! If you see one inside, just pick it up and toss it out. That made me throw up in my mouth a little.

Put all your fingers together. Drop your thumb and pinky. That’s how big he is.

The beach is a quick walk out my door. I’ve taken all the dogs, two at a time. They all enjoy it except scaredy cat Baby Faye. She won’t get TOO close to the water. I think it’ll happen. 🙂

I have chickens, cows, and horses as neighbors 🙂

Everything happens earlier here or really late. It gets REALLY hot so a lot happens in the mornings. Also, it gets darker earlier. It feels a lot busier in the day but for a shorter period of time. The Dominicans party late into the night. Sometimes I can hear music drifting this way. Last night we went to Sosua and partied for a bit!

 

I was really scared to drive but I’ve been driving with Debbie and I think I’m doing alright! It’s very different here. There don’t seem to be any laws as much as just people going with the flow. Pass when you want, do whatever you want, just pay attention. People don’t get pissy if you pass them or if you don’t. It’s just every man for himself and try not to get hit or hit anyone. Not as scary as I thought it would be.

I still have a lot of settling in to do. I’ve been super exhausted and trying to catch up on rest too.

I feel at peace. I feel home. My spirit is definitely in its element. I’ve had no panic attacks or regrets.

I have so much more to share, but I’ll leave you for now with a ton of photos.

Peace,

~ Lisa

 

A stopped clock. It’s always 11:26 here!
For 10 years, I tried to grow bougainvillea in MN. I potted it. Winterized it. It always died. It’s my FAVORITE. This is outside my front door. Interesting tidbit: the bright colors aren’t flowers, they are leaves!
Giggling Geckos Lane
From the back
Winky used to live at Debbie’s. LOL she’s Debbie’s dog but she hangs out here with Baby Faye.

This is in my silverware drawer. I’m afraid to ask. I assume that I’ll know when I need to use it. lol
My first cooked meal! Grilled cheese 🙂

 

Signs that I’m home. My front porch.
a work in progress ❤