Dan Gisvold at Bear Creek

Monday, October 31, 2011


Somewhere, in a box, is a very old picture of Bill, Dan and Gael Ann dressed for Halloween. Our grandmother was a seamstress and she made all of our costumes.

Dan was a black cat. It was the most incredible black cat you have ever seen. Footed with a tight head cap and white mask. The tail went on forever.

And Dan as a cat was the epitome of cat.

Long and thin even as a kid, he LOOKED like a cat.

It was always a holiday that I looked forward to. Not because of the candy but because of the outfits. Nana made some outstanding costumes and we took pride in the fact that we were original. Every year.

So Halloween holds lots of memories. And this year they are mostly of Dan.

They make me smile.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Today I realized (again) how alone I feel without Dan in the world.

I was driving home, it was really hot for San Luis and I am listening to light classical music. It calms me on most days.

But today I felt like I had the weight of the world on my shoulders. And I realized that it was my grief. I haven't cried in a long time. It is like the lake that was my tears has dried up.

I felt like the weight that I carried was a soft blanket of tears. All locked in the fabric that draped over my shoulders.

It felt like my soul had become hard, dried and cracked.

I have been, for so long it seems, acting "normal" when I just feel terribly alone.

Dan isn't here and it hurts.

So I wear my blanket of tears and hope that no one notices.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Not a Day

I am sitting at lunch with my daughter and her friend and I made a rotten pun. I thought it was funny but the friend looked at me like I had a third eye. My daughter had to explain that punning was a necessary form of language for me.

And then she told her friend that being around Dan and I could be harmful to your funny bone. She told about how Dan and I would have whole conversations in pun. It could go on for hours. But usually one of us had to give up.

I don't know how in the middle of a day Dan pops up. But he does.

I sit here tonight and see Zelda sleeping on the floor and Dan's voice echos in my head--"She is taking the pause that refreshes" Zelda is our blonde cocker spaniel. Get it?

He would call and ask me if Zelda was pausing. I would crack up. Yes, I am easily amused.

But with Dan I was happy just having him around. Having him tell me bad puns and competing with him in that arena was something that made me very happy. It was a small thing. But it was part of Dan and I.

I miss him every day.

There is not a day that goes by that he is not in my thoughts.

And then I come home to see Zelda. And I pause and think of him again.