Woke up, rolled out of bed,
Brushed my hand across my head.
Found my way to the bird food and threw some out.
Looking up, I noticed I was blind.
Found my cane, grabbed my shoes,
Headed out to make some news
And another day had started again.
My ultimate goal was to make it to the end.
The songs roll on, describing the differences in our lives, none more different than my own, or yours, or his, or hers.
As our stories are all unique to ourselves, I think we all share things in common with each other. We relate, we identify, we see things in others that are similar to what we do, how we feel, and how we love.
This next journal excerpt reminded me once again how important my family is to me. As unique as my siblings and parents are, they are all part of me, and for that, I celebrate.
Have fun, you unique person you.
Written August 2011, describing late summer 2010.
I must tell you now, so that you will never forget, my family has been the constant through all of the past year. I do not know what I would have done if not for family. There have been so many times that I have mistakenly taken for granted that I had family in my life and they would just always be there. I have been misguided in my beliefs and I know that now more than ever. I can not ever take my family for granted again.
I have told many times of how my wife has been there through all of this, and I could never begin to repay her. The only way I can show her my gratitude is by trying to be there for her when she needs me. I want her to be able to count on me, as I have her, for so many years. Through all of our years together, the rough patches, the good times, the bad times, the highs and lows, my love for her has grown in a way that I can not describe. We have grown closer and are better for having each other.
My son has shown us this past year that he can step up to the plate when needed. He has been a big help this past year and I am proud as hell of him. He continues to make a name for himself every day. He continues the Lyons name and I am thankful for that.
My parents and siblings , well there’s not much more to say except that I am blessed to have such a wonderful family. With mom and dad at the top of the hill, the rest of them are following suit. Once again I do not know how I would have made it through this past year without their love and support. I just don’t know how. Yes they were a tremendous help with desperately needed monetary assistance, but there was just so much more. Knowing that they were there day and night made everything seem bearable.
My parents above all the rest are the reason I am who I am. There nurturing and criticism and guidance and praise and support and love and compassion, and yes, discipline when needed, have helped sculpt me into the creature that stands before you. I am every ounce myself, just as I am every ounce them. My essence is Lyons and Cleaves. I hope that in some way I have managed to help the names be handed on down through the generations to come. I owe that to my folks, and their folks. I owe that to the generations past, and the generations to come.
Well August did roar through and headed into September. The next few weeks were spent trying to get ready mentally for the trip to Newton Mass. I was quickly trying to get my typing up to a credible skill, and at the same time trying to figure out how to be blind.
Matt was a big help as I stated. He would come on Saturday and help with things around the house, from mowing the dog pen, to other assorted odd jobs that I just couldn’t do. He was glad to help and we were glad to have him help.
I did have a hard time the first few times that we had Jack over to the house. I had random bouts with depression, and I let it affect me to the point that I am sure he could tell there was something wrong with Grampa Nunno. Something other that Nunno couldn’t see very well. I let this blind thing get the better of me on many occasions and I let it affect my little Jack Jack. I can never get those mmoments back, but I can do my best to make sure that when he is with his Gramma Nunna and myself, he will have all of me to be with. He must know that with obstacles, there is strength and perseverance. I must let him know when I am struggling and when he can help me with tasks around the house. He is such a bright boy and has shown on many occasions that he understands just what is going on. He knows that I am having a hard time. That was evident the day he took my hand and helped me out to the garden.
I will never forget that day. We were all headed out to the garden when he turned to notice that I was having a hard time getting my bearings. He walked back to me, took my hand, and said, “I’ll help you Nunno. Here, take my hand.” He guided me out to the garden and into his heart. Since then, when ever he is around, my battery gets charged up. He is one of the sources for all of my power and strength. He is one of the reasons that I get up in the morning. He is one of the reasons that all this seems worthwhile.He is such a source of inspiration for me. I never thought that I would be able to have anything to offer him as far as guidance or nurturing now that I have lost vision. The thing that I never thought of and overlooked on so many occasions was just how much he has taught me. He has helped me pick myself back up and trudge on. He has helped me to be unselfish and learn that with all of my crap there is always light shining down on me. The light is from family. The light is from him.
I love you Jack Matthew Lyons.
Our garden was one of the best ones that we have ever had. I tried to help Lynne with the weeding and the picking and all, but I know it was overwhelming. With all of her own aches and pains that she was dealing with, she still managed to get out there and weed and all. It seemed like the garden would be producing until the cows came home.
The end of August came and I got a call from Paula. She wanted to take me and go down east to visit relatives. I jumped at the opportunity. It had been a few years since I was down east and I was sure that it would be good for Lynne to get a break from me as well. There was also an anniversary party being planned for Maxine and Si’s 50th.
We went and stayed with Aunt Shelley. It seemed so weird to be there. I could tell I was there, just couldn’t see it. The smell of down east is unmistakeable. Salt air always seems to do my mental state a world of good. It did once again.
I got a whole different perspective from that trip than I have ever got from going down east. I got a different feel for all of it. I seemed to sense different things about my relatives than I ever did before. All the little subtleties were very noticeable to me. Audible ones for the most part.
It was a good trip, but I was glad when we got home. I always do like spending time with Paula. She and I always have such good chats about everything under the sun. She has a way of getting me to open up. Not totally, but a lot more than I usually do with anyone else. She is such a gentle soul. God graced us all when he introduced her to the world.
To be continued…