Riding the Waves
Navigating life in the wake of loss
Written by Addie Gaines
“Then my life changed in a way I didn’t expect. My husband of 33 years unexpectedly passed away. I had spent most of my life with Alan, more than my life without him. There are so many feelings and so many memories. Almost every item in our house, even insignificant everyday items, contained memories that trigger waves of emotion that swell and recede. I quickly realized that I had to ride the waves or the waves of emotion could destroy me.
In addition to all the stories of the past, new and incredulous things started happening showing me that Alan, in his own way, was still here with me. I think that as I ride the waves of emotion, it is leaving me open to notice the meanings of the special messages and messengers that I have encountered.
The way I have chosen to deal with the overwhelming feelings and emotions is to write. In writing, I am feeling and understanding. I am sharing myself with others in a way that might make a difference in another person’s life.”
This is a book of my thoughts and experiences. It’s analogous to a bee making honey. This idea was inspired by an excerpt in the book, Nourishing the Teacher, by Danny Arguetty about bees. An average worker bee flies from flower to flower gathering nectar which she processes in her body, regurgitating repeatedly until she creates the substance that after being evaporated with the wind from her wings becomes honey. The unique flavor of her honey depends upon the flowers she visited. And, despite all of her hard work, in a lifetime, she only makes about a twelfth of a teaspoon of honey.
Each one of us lives a life of experiences. The experiences, whether we view them as positive or negative are the flowers and our memories and the stories we tell ourselves about the experiences are the nectar. We regurgitate the experiences in our minds and when it’s distilled, it becomes our honey to share with the world. This book is my unique honey, flavored by my experiences. In the grand scheme of life and my impact on the world, I can only hope it’s a twelfth of a teaspoon.
Addie Gaines is a writer from Branson, Missouri. She has published numerous articles and crafted grants during her past professional life as a kindergarten teacher and an elementary principal, but really that doesn’t make her a writer. She currently serves part-time as the editor of the The Missouri Elementary Principal Magazine, but that doesn’t make her a writer either.
Gaines states, “I am a writer because I write. I observe life and create word pictures. Lately, I’ve been driven to write about my life experiences and what I observe and learn, many of which have been emotionally difficult as of late. People read it on Facebook. I decided to share my thoughts and experiences in this book to reach a larger audience.”
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