September 2, 2019
My Dream Team
Now before I get further into this part of the Blog, you must know that I did not do this by myself. Remember I said above I tried and tried to do this. But we (my daughters and I) were paralyzed and overwhelmed. We could not do anything but survive the pain that consumes our heart. We knew that this was not the way to live, nor was it the way we wanted to live. Our house was not nasty by any means. It was just cluttered and unorganized. I have to give you the back story about who we call our Dream Team and our deep connection to them.
Meet my organizers Lauren Poe & Kike Ojo, Clutter to Clean.
Jose and Elaine Belardo
Elaine Belardo (also my one of Spiritual Advisor) will beautify, and turn your house into a home by making it a cozy, warm, oasis. She is also the founder of the “Deeper Windows Project” that she founded when her husband Jose’ Belardo, was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s. Ironically he was diagnosed around the same time Michael was diagnosed with Lung Cancer in 2016.
Elaine, Mike, and Jose
I want to tell you how God works in our lives. I know for a fact that He knows what we need before we know we will need it. He prepares us for things that we are going to go through in our future, and he places the people you will need to lean on and glean from in your life and specific times. Only God can orchestrate our lives like this.
The book of Jeremiah states, “For I know that plans I have for you. Declares the LORD. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you plans to give you a home and a future.” God knew what was ahead for my life from the moment I was born, and when I looked back on my life, I can see where God was preparing me for such a time. He has always had, and He still does have my best interest always in mind. I prayed for a way out and trusted in the LORD, and He answered my prayers!
Tragedies can pull people apart, but they can also bond you for life!
When I met Elaine, her daughter Lauren was in high school. Looking back, both of our families were in a high season of our lives. Michael was retired after 21 years in the military and had a good after the military carrier going and Jose’ was a distinguished officer with U.S. Public Health Service. We were all very active in our churches and communities. Elaine was in charge of one of our Chapels Women’s group here at Fort Leavenworth, where we became friends. When our husbands were diagnosed with their respective debilitating diseases, we shared the bond of becoming caregivers to our husbands who were both the STRONG head of their household, something at our age we were not expecting!
Unfortunately, as you know, Michael made his transition home to be with God, but we both soon discovered that we were both grieving what was to be our future and we became each other’s shoulders to lean on. She has been there for me even though all of the work, pain, and grief she is going through. We have been each other’s sounding boards because some people, as well-meaning as they are, do not understand this type of grief and what it takes to keep going day by day. She has helped my girls and me through some of our darkest days and is always there to help us celebrate the good times in this new normal of our lives. I hope I am doing the same for her. I am proud to not only call her a part of our village, but she and our dream team are a part of our family. (I am still waiting on my adoption papers to come through)
So, to have them come in a do a total overhaul on our house was more comfortable than having strangers in my home. They had stock in our memories and an investment in our lives. Because they knew us personally, they knew how difficult this was and would be. They were very gentle and loving throughout the entire process, which took a couple of months. If the girls and I had to do this on our own, it would have taken us years to complete this type of project. Lauren and Kike kindly encouraged us to purge and did not push if something was too difficult to process or get rid of; they just found a way to organize it. Wait, now I am getting ahead of myself. Purging and reorganizing in the middle of a difficult situation is very hard and can be excruciating. But our Dream Team made the task bearable and yes, sometimes even fun!
I love you all
Have a blessed and Amazing Day