Cross Country

I left Wenatchee on a cold morning, February 23, 2018.  A very sad parting as we didn’t know when I’d see them again.  Both Landen and Luke wished me safe traveling and said they would miss me.  I surely will miss them and I was sad to go, I HATE Good byes but I had a lot to look forward to at the same time.  I would get to visit with my son, Joe for almost 24 hours and that is a life time in their busy routine.  I was so thankful he could get away from family and work for that long to spend with me it helped the parting so very much.  We had to take the train to get over the mountain to Seattle as the passes were snowed in unless you have four wheels drive and snow cleats or chains and even then the driving was very poor.   Because it was such a long ride, 3 hours or more, we decided to go by sleeper or roomette instead of just a seat on the train and I am so glad we did.  The train was full and we had a private car with two refiners and room to sit and visit easily.  Because of the snow in the mountains and east of us the train was delayed almost three hours.  This train goes from Chicago to Seattle and they have had some very bad weather east and north of Wenatchee so the train is often delayed.  It was a very nice ride and seemed far too short as we had a chance to just sit and visit for the whole time.  I could have gone all the way across the country like that and still not gotten all visited out but we did get to Seattle in time to go out to lunch and continue the visit.  Joe had left his truck at the rail road station so we had a truck to take us to lunch and on to the hotel where we spent the night.

Saturday morning we got up and headed for the airport as my flight was for 6:25.  We got there at 4:25 and got me registered and seated in a wheel chair.  Joe could stay only a short time after that as he could not go through security and he needed to get back home.  There was no train back to Wenatchee so he got the earliest bus he could find and hoped to get back in time to see Amy’s play.  He missed the first half but said he got there at intermission so got to see some of it with the family.  Would have loved to see it but then I would have loved to be at my own Christmas Eve party but could not took one more disappointment.  Life is so full of disappointments but it is just best to forget about them and do the best you can and make the most of it.  I was determined to do just that and scared as I was I went ahead alone.  The tears were close at hand but I managed to keep them to myself except for one couple I met in Washington.  Both of them were in wheel chairs too and she was taking care of her husband.  Seeing them together I could not stop a few tears from rolling down my cheeks and as we sat there waiting to board the plane we talked and I told her to cherish every moment she had with him-  she knew and was doing just that, Norman never wanted to get to the place where I had to do more for him than cook his special meals and listen to the doctors instructions for him but now I know I would have loved to do ever so much more but I know he would have been very unhappy having to let me wait on him.  You have no choice which ending you will have and so all you can do is the very best you can and cherish each day as if it were your last.

The flight from Washington to Atlanta was to take 4 hours 45 minutes, and I was scared to death as I had no one with me to say “yes, they have put you on the right plane or tell me what I should do or eat.  I had to make all those choices myself and I am not much good at that.  Just before we took off a young man I’d say in the mid 40’s sat beside me and of course as I always do when I am nervous I started talking to him.  He was so nice, he helped me though the whole flight so much so when we landed in Atlanta the flight attendant didn’t even help me get my carry on down until I was still in my seat and everyone else was in line to get off the plane.  Then she came and said “Oh, you travel companion left already, why didn’t you go with him.”  I then explained he was a stranger, just a very nice stranger who had helped me through a very scary time   she was so surprised and then got me to the wheel chair I had asked for when I booked the flight.  I got to the next gate just in time to start boarding and went the last leg myself.  This time I had an older man from South Africa who was very nice but I didn’t want to or need to ask for help and we made the hour and a half trip in silence and those of you that know me, that in itself was good for me!

We landed in West Palm almost half an hour early but Becca and I got to the airport about the same time and both arrived at the baggage claims area at the same time so all the stress of the traveling alone was gone.  She took me home and we had a wonderful visit on the way home.  I talked her ear off and she made me feel I had never left Florida.  Patty, Gina, Colby and James were all waiting for me when we got to Port ST Lucie and instantly I was home and welcomed by all.  We had a wonderful evening and next day,  Now I am into the new routine and find I can be of some help here.  It is so nice a warm,  I love looking out into the sun drenched yard of home and to walk out when ever I wish without having to put on a coat or hat.  I hope I can remember this feeling when the humidity returns and I know it will but am so thankful for the sun now I will try to enjoy the sun all summer long.  I took a few pictures on the plane when I had the help but I haven’t gotten them transferred from my iPhone so can’t show you them now but will as soon as I get them.   Nothing special, as I didn’t have Landen’s eye to take them and there aren’t vey many.  At least I got some and that is good for me with Norman there to take the picture or to transfer them for me..  I am getting there even if it is slowly.  Watch me in a couple month, you won’t know me.   Have a great day.  I know I will.

About Carol (Ouma) Petts

I am a retired teacher. I have taught all levels from kindergarten through college and have been retired now for over 20 years. The last ten years we have lived on a farm and lived off the land, growing our own food and canning for our extended family. Now we have sold the farm and are moving to Florida to truly retire. I guess I have always had a short attention span as this is our 11th move. We have moved from a small farm in New Hampshire, to more city type living, small business adventures, focusing more on traveling, Florida living, Georgia, and Tennessee farming and now back to Florida. My blog is a way to keep my children up to date on what I am doing and letting them know I am still alive and well. My children are spread across the country from New England to Florida, Nova Scotia to New Mexico and CA and several places between, They let me know what they are up to by commenting on my blog but they are so busy with their own lives most times I have to assume " no news is good news". Now I are starting on a new adventure so will try to give daily updates until we get settled into a routine. Then I know even if I am getting older and should settle down I will start looking for some new and exciting adventure to start. Welcome aboard. Norman died Oct 30, 2017 so I am continuing the journey alone with the aid of my children, grand children and great grand children. At present I am living with my daughter and we are 7 in one house and cover four generations. We range in age from 7 to 85 and are finding common ground, we are living proof that multi generations can live and function in a three bedroom house if they really want to. Soon my grandson will have his house built next door so we all will have a room of their own except for the seven year old twins who by choice will share a room.
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2 Responses to Cross Country

  1. Shanti Kaur Khalsa says:

    Welcome home, Mom! And PS- you are so strong and independent I barely know you now!

    • Thanks, Love. I feel strong now. Yesterday was such a good day and today is starting off even better. I never could have done this here without going away first. Only then can I see that all I wanted was right here in my own back yard. I feel like Dorathy from the Wizard of Oz. There is no need to run any more. Talk to you soon.

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