TIME: MY NEW YEARS THOUGHTS FOR 2014


TIME

  • TIME  is the only thing that seems appropriate to write about as New Year’s Eve 2013 approaches and New Years Day 2014 tantalizes us with thoughts of hope, peace and capturing elusive love for some. For oh so many reasons I want to be sure to mark this date and time in my life. Let me start with just some simple milestones that occur to me at this moment and seem most pertinent.
    • HAPPY BIRTHDAY  NEW YEARS DAY,  DADDY.
  • My biological father Lloyd Jewel Godwin was born on January 1, and would turn 99 if he were living on New Year’s Day. Already living on his own at age  twelve, he became a boxer to survive.  At age 21, to win my grandfather’s permission to marry my mother who was 16,  he agreed to become a sharecropper and work with the family.  Often this meant picking cotton in the scorching sun up to 104 degrees, and sharing housing with “in-laws”.
  • 0021Later Dad learned the welding trade and traveled for the Oklahoma Union until retirement. This was a job he was able to work with some prestige and recognition for his “gift” at specialty welding techniques. He was highly regarded professionally and worked jobs all over the U.S. and Canada, as well as Alaska.
    • Top left: Lloyd (about 4) and brother Leman (about 2) before the death of their mother Estella the following year.
    • Top Right: Lloyd living in Arkansas with relatives (about 12) just before he was put out on his own 
    • Bottom left: At 20 on his own and working as an amateur boxer in Oklahoma.
    • Bottom right: Wedding day of my parents; Marguerite (16) Lloyd (21) Morris, Oklahoma 1936
    • Bottom center: Lloyd age 44 visiting in Davenport, Iowa.
  • Lloyd Jewel Godwin
  • Throughout his life my father was known for his coal black hair, (no grey until his 70’s and then, only a distinguished “Widow’s Peak.” He was also captivating with his  Paul Newman blue eyes and often known as a “ladies man”. When my Oklahoma relatives met my son Steve as an adult, they were stunned to see that, with the exception of my son’s snapping brown eyes, he was very much “my Dad.” Same height, build, mannerisms and quick mind that loves to learn. My Dad read history, studied the wars, military and stories of America’s west extensively. He had a wonderful collection of  well read books, despite the fact that  he never got to complete school beyond eighth grade.
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  • My son Steven Eric Grubbs at age 48. (4 years difference in the age of my dad’s picture ).
  • Time has flown by so fast that I can hardly imagine that 52 years ago January I married my husband.  Students at Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK. I was 18 and he 21; the exact legal age to marry without parental consent. We tried to elope but under parental pressure we ended up with a church wedding to prevent the wrath of my mother from descending on us.  .
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  •  Later in a twist of fate, or perhaps “earned respect”, my husband would become my mother’s best friend. It would be friendship that lasted until her passing.Mother and Dad in happier times.
  •  (She is pictured with my step-father Dr. Willard Smith)
  • My husband and I committed to growing old together,  and with only one blip of  Time on our marital radar, we have.  (I will be 71 in February and he is 73).
  • There is no question in my mind that Time is also loss.  As in recent years, we are forced to prepare for loss. Family, friends, and “Fur Friends”.  At this writing we are conducting “hospice care in house” for our beloved greyhound and “Fur-son,” Big Buddy Grubbs. If you can imagine how wonderful it is to have a beloved pet, how great it feels to receive that unconditional love for years, then take it to the extreme opposite and realize that the “loss” of that same pet takes you to the depths of emptiness in a special part of your heart. So it is that we prepare to lose Big Buddy, but in that loss we are sustained by the knowledge that “the process of losing him” reminds and prepares us for the inevitable loss of one another. So in that, we are thankful.

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  •  Big Buddy Grubbs in his Oklahoma State University gear escorting his love, Baby Doll Grubbs in her Oklahoma Sooner’s gear,  to a Christmas party in 2011 sponsored by the Quad Cities Greyhound Adoptions group, Maysville, Iowa. They are the group that helped connect us to these two as well as our first greyhound Dex.
  • **********************************************************************************
  •  The  “writer inside me” compels me to also record the following:. 
  • “We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths; in feelings, not in figures on a dial.”    Philip James Bailey, Festus 
  •  Somehow, that translation of Time speaks to me when I review my life. It encourages me to realize I am not in a battle with Time but rather I am living in an accumulation of deeds, thoughts and feelings that are not dictated by the years I have left. I believe each of us might be more satisfied with life were we to look at our life in review using that criteria.
  • “Indifferent to the affairs of men, time runs out, precise, heedless, exact and immutable in rhythm.”     Erwin Sylvanus, Dr. Korczak and the Children.
  • Truly, that quote sums up my thoughts of this milestone: Indifferent to the affairs of men (or women), Time runs out. I consider that I am not the thumb on the stopwatch; I am the runner in pursuit of another step. Yet I do believe, with all my heart that when the Time runs out, it is over. No bargaining, no purchasing of another day; simply the knowledge that Time runs out.  This is probably the one function of Time that I do understand.  I am however comforted by a belief system which includes the unwavering “knowledge” that there is life after death which is a whole new and different discussion of  “Time”.
  •  I would not be a credible writer if I did not summarize my thoughts of Time, the end of Time and compare it with the ‘written word’ concerning Time.
  • The life of every man is a diary in which he means to write one story, and writes another, and his humblest hour is when he compares the volume as it is with what he vowed to make it.  J. M. Barrie, The Little Minister.
  • “Having lived long, I have experienced many instances of being obligated by better information, or fuller consideration, to change opinions even on important subjects, which I once thought right, but found to be otherwise.”  Benjamin Franklin. 
  • I do not make New Year’s Resolutions, but rather choose to adopt an “attitude of mindset” for the New Year. So in 2012, with this quote in mind, I chose: “Open to change in the Time I have left.”
  • In 2014  I offer this thought.
  • Happy New Year.
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5 thoughts on “TIME: MY NEW YEARS THOUGHTS FOR 2014

  1. Thank you for these words as the new year approaches… Yes, we live in deeds, in moments and faced with opportunity at all times. The losses, well, what can I say? We planted trees at the Hindu Burial Grounds yesterday… I have become a benefactor of those fields… I left behind the one we lost, but I walked out with my arms around the ones I have and ever so grateful for our having each other.

  2. From your comments I know you really understood my point. Tuni was on my mind these last 48 hours and I am so happy to know you spent “time” with her planting the trees and grounding yourself with the other children. Time has a way of bringing things to a peaceful acceptance and what more beautiful way than planting a tree.I recently read a Jewish scholar’s attempt to trace the story of planting the tree even if you knew you would die tomorrow; funny enough, the Jews, Muslims, Christians and other’s all claim to be the original source. To me it just shows what a wonderful idea it is. Thank you for your time in responding and for reading the post.Love to the girls and staff.

  3. My heart is sad thinking about Buddy. I can’t imagine the sadness you guys feel. We love our doggies snd they give us so much joy and love.

    1. You are one of the “few” left in my life who understand the depth of my love and connection to dogs. Most would not know that my Daddy Lloyd was a “Oklahoma wolf hunter” ( back then it was not just a sport but the wolves ravaged herds and livestock and were also income to live on in our home. I remember Dad had to turn in the ears from the wolves to prove he killed them before he could be paid the bounty.) Long before I was born, “dogs” were his great loves. In my life there has been a long line of dog/pets that stand out and made my difficult childhood better. That comforted me in my heartbreaks and my travels as we left Oklahoma and went to Texas, then to Iowa. There I discovered my wonderful Joe (shepherd-collie cross)had not been able to come to Iowa with us. That coupled with my sister Trula staying behind to finish her high school senior year in Oklahoma was almost unbearable. Talk about feeling alone. It would be years before I could have another dog, but thank goodness I married a dog lover. Thanks for the input Danita. Always good to hear from the “other sister” of my heart though you were technically my aunt..

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