09.26.20 Roy Chauvin’s Funeral September 5, 2020 and some thoughts

I posted this initially with no photos. I didn’t take any that day but I thank Chip for taking pictures that I am including below. There is no picture of Roy, I would not do that.   I have worked on this post for the last couple of weeks. Couldn’t write about it before that. I now see how valuable Roy checking it over was. I miss him so much for so many things.

95.1 SHINE-FM shared this with me recently. “The strength I gain through my own brokenness might be the thing that brings healing to someone else.” – Erin Branham.

I know I was in a foggy state after Roy passed away and didn’t start to come out of it until well after the funeral. There is no way to explain how it felt hugging friends and family who came to pay their respects. So many of our family, regular friends, church friends came. People that Roy and I had in our lives over the years. I missed visiting with some people that I wanted to visit with but at one point I had to go eat something at the wake before I sunk down to the ground. I also missed people at the funeral. I love you all and thank so much for being there to support our family

The funeral service was perfect.

Our Associate Pastor, Derek Wall read Roy’s obituary and made a couple of comments about what Roy meant to him.

Both of our sons spoke about their dad and what he meant to them. Roy had to be beaming with ride hearing those young men express their love for him. We all read Roy’s favorite scripture, Psalm 23, together. Roy memorized Psalm 23 this year and loved sharing it with others.

Teddy Forrest lead everyone in singing “Victory in Jesus” and “Because He Lives.” Beautiful hymns Roy and I  both loved. Deanna Cummings accompanied on the piano sounding beautiful as she always does.

Young Mia Dixon sang “How Deep the Father’s Love for Us” so beautifully.  Roy always loved to hear Mia sing.

Brother Avery spoke about becoming a Christian and living your life with Christ. He also commented that Roy was usually quiet but his wife had lots to say.  Surely he wasn’t talking about me. Kinda sounded like he knew my mama Jo Blum Traylor. Spot Traylor even called me something like a mini Ms. Jo after the funeral. I take that as a compliment!

Chad closed the service in prayer. I am so thankful for the two young men we raised that have such a strong love for Christ.

We, Roy’s immediate family, were allowed the final moments to be with Roy. This was the last time I was and will ever be with Roy’s body. I know his spirit is no longer in that body but it is what we as humans will last see him in physical form. I think I may have said that before this I couldn’t imagine how people touhed or kissed the body. That did not enter into my mind with Roy.  I would have climbed into that casket if they had let me do it.

The six wonderful men that served as pallbearers were George Roussel, Greg Roussel, Eric Doyle, Steven Tate, Ron Whittington, and Jonah Kyle Traylor. They brought Roy’s casket to the cemetery next to our church Trinity Baptist.  Each of you meant something special to Roy.  Thank you to each of you.

 

My mama, Josie Blum Traylor is buried in the same cemetery. When God calls me home I will be buried between Roy and Mama. Our bodies will be there but when I get to Heaven that will be a glorious reunion with them. My mama loved Roy and I’m sure there were a lot of hugs and love going on when he got there!

Roy’s casket was covered with an American flag because of his years in the Navy.

When they folded it up my brother in law George brought it to me. When he stood in front of me with the folded flag and we looked at each other in the eye it was one of the most meaningful parts to me of the burial. George was in the military since I was a little girl until he retired several years ago.  I have the flag folded on display in our living room and will be getting a box for it soon.

After the funeral service and burial, the ladies and maybe men of our church had an amazing and delicious meal waiting for us. We have a new building at our church that has a very large what I call Fellowship Hall. Due to COVID, I haven’t been to see the newly finished building. Its an amazing place and we got to enjoy the delicious food there.  The ladies that I know were there serving and helping us all were Liz Martin, Rebecca Willoughby, Kaylon Willoughby, Nancy Bankston, Brenda Kuhn and I’m probably leaving someone out.

Afterward Chip and I went back to the cemetery to collect some of the flowers from the beautiful wreaths Chad’s family and Roy’s Halpin’s Flooring Family sent.  We kept those in the kitchen in a vase for many days afterward.

I know without a doubt that Roy was feeling very loved by all us humans still on earth.  So many comments from young men about what Mr. Roy meant to their lives, our friends and family sharing how he will be missed. One thing that was said over and over was how Roy could do anything and he could. He amazed me our whole marriage making parts, fixing the unfixable, solving any computer problem that came his way, and working hard always to make our life better.

It is sometimes harder now than when Roy first died. I was running on fumes in a fog right after but now the reality has set in. When I run into a problem I think “I’ll see what Roy says we should do.” But I can’t ask him anything anymore. I can’t remember what all happened the day he died and I am still blown away that in just a minute or two he went from very alive to the opposite.  I desperately want him to be proud of how I am trying to carry on like he would want me to.  This is the most awful experience of my life but I am so thankful that I have God helping me cope. He is so good.

There are in the end three things that last: Faith, Hope, and Love and the greatest of these is love 1 Corinthians 13:13

 

 

09.25.20 Swapping phones

Since swapping phones with Roy’s I haven’t been able to hear the phone ring. I also couldn’t tell who was calling. The calls coming in on my old phone had names and ringtones associated with them. On Roy’s phone only numbers showed and who knows people’s numbers any more. I figured it was something I did to it since my phone had a tendency to lose icons, move icons and other things that were really the result of me putting my phone in my purse without turning it off. That was one of those things that Roy was so patient with me. He’d say hand me the phone, he’d fix it and hand it back. I was imagining him in Heaven saying “oh goodness, she’s at it again.”  That’s just one of the things he patiently fixed for me so many times.

Yesterday afternoon I spent a couple of hours removing numbers from Roy’s phone that I don’t need and adding names to numbers so I would know who calls and text messages were for.

This morning Chip helped me communicate with a Samsung representative who did his magic and now I hear my phone ring and texts come in!

Then I think the last thing I needed to do having to do with phones, is to change my regular phone plan to a prepaid phone plan. It’s now $35 a month, in three months will be $30 and in nine months will be $25 a month!

In between all of that I cried and hated each change I made.

My phone number is still 985 320 8640. It is set to Do Not Disturb from 8 pm to 10 am every day. It doesn’t even vibrate during that time. It helps me sleep well to know I won’t be woken up by the phone in the morning.

I have been thinking about a lot of things I want to write about so you’ll probably be hearing from me more often for a while.

Please continue to keep my family in your prayers. We all miss Roy’s presence in our lives so much.

I hope each of you has a wonderful weekend and that our LSU Tigers and New Orleans Saints win big this weekend!

Psalm 18: 1-3  KJV  I will love thee, O Lord, my strength.  The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower. I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.

 

09.20.20 Grief, Social Security and Verizon

Last night, Saturday, I felt such deep grief and cried missing my husband and knowing I will not see him again until I die and go to Heaven. I miss Roy’s presence. I miss his joking and picking on me. I miss his love for me. I miss him reminding me to take my medicine in the morning and evening. I miss his comments throughout the day keeping me on track with my brain. I miss him putting his arms around me when I was having a hard time with my brain. I miss singing with him on Sunday mornings at church whether at Church on the Wall or church in person. I counted on all that and more from Roy and I miss them all. I have so many questions for him about how to do things and where things are around here. I don’t do figuring out things well anymore and I so wish I could have one last visit with Roy, just one last visit.

I started having a few good hours each day and then yesterday happened.

I called Social Security on Tuesday to find out how much of Roy’s Social Security I would be eligible for. and to let them know of his passing away. They took some information and scheduled the official phone interview at 1 pm Thursday.

They called right on time and after asking several questions the Social Security representative asked me to hold while she analyzed everything.

When she came back on the line she informed me that I would be receiving the lump sum burial benefit of $255. And that I was not eligible for any spousal benefits.

My brain froze up and I knew I must have heard her wrong.  I asked if she meant I would not receive any of Roy’s social security benefits.  She said that was correct.

Because I receive a little retirement check from the State of Louisiana it made me ineligible to receive any of Roy’s Social Security benefits.

Even before hanging up with Social Security I was beginning to cry and was just flat out stunned. Mostly my reaction was because Roy would be so upset if he knew that’s where his death left me financially.  After thinking about it for a bit I know that while I won’t be rolling in the dough I will be okay financially. I’m not asking for anyone’s sympathy. I am sharing this so that others will know to check into where there spouse’s death will leave them as far as Social Security is concerned.

When I mostly recovered from that shock Chip took me to Hammond to take care of some things and pick up something I needed. Last week we went to Walmart and yesterday was only the second time I’ve been away from the house since Roy passed away.

We brought my cute little buddy Samson back home. He’s kept me company and I am now looking for a smallish dog for my forever buddy.

Since Roy knew I shouldn’t be driving, he most all of the time took me wherever I needed to go.  Roy not being there like he used to be while I as in Hobby Lobby and GoodWill made me so sad. Chip can’t help that he’s not Roy but I hope he knows how much I appreciate him taking me places on his day off even if I didn’t always show it.

I spent an hour in Hobby Lobby walking up and down each aisle.  That is usually the best therapy for me since I love that place.  It was some help yesterday but I just kept thinking Roy is out in our truck waiting for me. He wasn’t outside waiting for me and that brought sadness to my heart all throughout the store.  I did find some cute things to use in my wine bottle decorating. Chip sweetly replaced my debit card with his when it came to checking out.

The main reason we went to Hammond yesterday was to find out information from Verizon about moving my phone number to Roy’s newer phone. And to find out what my bill will be if I remove his number. The young Verizon representative was very nice but having to say the words to him that the phone number I needed to cancel was because my husband passed away was just overwhelming. The young man is very good at what he does and was very kind to me. I now am using the physical phone that was Roys but it has my phone number now. I was prepared to move over to Consumer Cellular but I was happy with the plan changes the young man recommended so something good came out of that.

Back home trying to get accomplished what the young man said to do has been frustrating. I did get Roy’s phone number disconnected though just not the part where I change the type of plan which will reduce my bill with Verizon. Chip said he’ll handle the part I couldn’t do that made me frustrated.

Each time I accomplish something that is necessary since Roy passed away it brings so much grief and hurts my heart.  I miss my husband so much.

I did get to shop on my outing with Chip which means fun things for me at home and a couple of new blouses even if they are Good Will blouses!

I know that every single thing I am going through will be used to bring God Glory and it will all work together to be for my good.

It is now Saturday and I’ve made some progress on separating paperwork and getting some of it filed where it belongs. Some of that was medical papers for Roy the last month he was alive. I am saving them just in case they are needed. Looking through them brought all the difficulties Roy had during that time to my memory.

When the paperwork got to be too much for me I started working on some decoupaged plates and rocks.

Roy did not like chicken and dumplings. To show you how much my mama loved Roy, when she cooked chicken and dumplings for us she’d cook some fried chicken for Roy. Chip and I love chicken and dumplings so I made us a nice size pot today.

I am planning to lay low next week by not going anywhere or having anyone over. I’ve loved my visitors this week but I feel I need some downtime for a few days.

I find some days now are harder than when Roy first passed away. I was in shock at first, very much in denial that Roy’s gone for good. I can’t say this enough that I don’t know how to do life without Roy, my best friend by my side.  I really don’t want to have to learn but it is what I have to do now and I continue to ask ya’ll for prayers to get our family through this.

Thank you all, Rosalyn

 

 

09.14.20 At those times that somone asks me how I am…

At those times that someone asks me how I am, my response of “Fine” or “As good as I can be” please know that any one or more of these things below are what’s really happening in my life or in my heart at that time.

I will not see my husband Roy again for the rest of my life. That is the most overwhelming feeling yet. It makes my heart hurt.

I know and respect that this is God’s will for our life. Roy has gone to live in Heaven and I’m living here. I don’t know how to do life without my honey Roy.

If I didn’t have Jesus as my Lord and Savior I wouldn’t have the comfort of His presence which I desperately need.

I see Roy all throughout the inside and outside our home. I have done a little bit of going through his things but can’t handle too much at one time.

Roy was my best friend. We had so much fun living life together. Sometimes our big outing for the week was going to Walmart and we loved it.

This covid mess made us stay home together all the time and I loved it.

I just realized that I am now a widow.

I have dementia and just lost my caregiver. He knew all of my problems that no one else knew. He loved me through it every time something would make it bad.

I always thought I would die first and Roy didn’t agree. Guess he was right.

I’ve lost the person who reviewed all my blog posts before I clicked on Publish.

I just checked out the number of photos I have in my funeral PowerPoint and it’s 266. Guess I’ll have to start reducing that number!

I went to the grocery with Chip Saturday evening. How bad could it feel to go to the grocery? It was awful in some ways.  Roy and I had our grocery shopping routine worked out. On Saturday the fruit section was first and I almost didn’t get past the bananas without tears coming to my eyes.

I am right now watching the first Saints game I have ever watched without my husband Roy. We loved our Saints and loved cheering them on.

Whenever it rained Roy claimed that it was his turn to water everything that day.

The bath towel he used last is still hanging in my bathroom. I don’t know when it will ever be removed.

He finished so many projects around here and every time I look at one of them I’d give anything to trade that finished project to have him back.

I still have food in my freezer that we bought for me to cook something he really liked. I just cooked a pot of chili he was looking forward to.

My heart is broken but I have been told it will heal over time.

I needed the good cry that each of these things made me do.

I am spending my birthday, today, under my craft table cleaning and organizing things. Roy’s desk is now in my craft room and I take comfort having his “things” near me.

Please continue to pray for our family as we learn to live without my precious Roy.

Thank you all.

 

 

 

 

 

09.11.20 Roy’s photo slide show, the trash bag and the God thing!

I needed to write something that made me smile and be happy for a few minutes.

Roy’s photo slide show: After Roy passed away I went to the folder on my computer where his pictures to be used at his wake and funeral were saved. I did think there were a lot of photos there and there were over 300 photos in the PowerPoint I put together about a year ago. Before sending the photos to the funeral home I tried to go through the photos but being in shock and having dementia I didn’t do too well.

Chip brought the thumb drive we put the photos on to the funeral home. Right after he left there they called me because they could only use 100 pictures. He graciously went back and removed 200 photos. That is not however what this is all about.

When we were at the funeral I noticed some odd photos in the slideshow. Odd as in my husband without his shirt on replacing the wallpaper in our bathroom a long time ago. That and several others were not ones I would have used.

Then it hit me, All those photos were just dumped in the folder last year and were never filtered through. At some time earlier in my life I would have freaked out but I didn’t this time. I’m thinking Roy was restraining me from Heaven.

I am going to check out my slideshow to get it under 100 and are appropriate!

Here’s the trash bag story. As far back as I can remember Roy has always said that he didn’t need some expensive funeral and coffin. He would be okay with being dumped in a trash bag and put out for the trash men to haul off. We’d all roll our eyes and shake our heads. Well………

When we were at Brandon Thompson Funeral Home the day after Roy died we told the Funeral Director the trashbag story. We asked if we could bring a trash bag. He said sure. When we got to the Funeral Home the night of the wake they showed us that Roy’s legs were in a black trash bag. I know for sure that Roy, who was quite a character was smiling so big because he definitely was put in a bag to bury him! Funerals can be morbid and sad but the fact that I got to share the trashbag story with friends and family at the wake and funeral helped keep a little smile on our faces or helping us to chuckle a little bit. Roy would have absolutely loved it.
I’ll finish this off with an absolute God thing that happened today and yesterday. God used some friends of ours from church, who as far as I know, are rarely on Facebook to see the request I put there yesterday for a bed. Michelle Hill I love you! Michelle called her sister in law Julie Lester. Julie and her husband Keith brought me a queen size frame, mattress and box springs, two sets of sheets, two pillows, and a bedspread today. I love you, Julie and Keith. God didn’t even mind that I’ve been fussing from time to time at God and Roy for taking Roy away. I did spend almost an hour yesterday singing praises to Him. Thank you these church family of mine for your generosity.

I seem to have so much to share here and I thank you to those who have encouraged me to do just that.

Have a Blessed weekend! The Saints play Sunday around 3 o’clock!!! Roy and I have always watched the games together. I’ll have to cheer for both of us now. Please keep us in your prayers.

09.09.20 Getting through the first days and Roy’s wake

I’ve learned so much through this experience from others about what really helps a family during the first day or so after losing a loved one. Prayers and love are of the highest importance but food comes in next. The day after Roy passed away friends brought food. The unbelievable new neighbor Missy who ran to our house and started CPR before I could even get home brought the most delicious red beans, rice, and cornbread. Another friend Cindy brought roasted chickens and streusel cake. We couldn’t eat all of it so we froze some for a later date.

I am thankful that we had a few days to let this loss sink in before Roy’s wake was on Friday night at Brandon Thompson Funeral Home in Hammond. It was the first time we got to see Roy since he passed away. He looked so handsome like he always did. Living my life with Roy has been one of the biggest joys of my life. Other than the times I’d like to whack him over the head for something or other we had a long wonderful marriage. I’ve always thought it as creepy to touch a dead person but I didn’t for a second feel anything wrong about touching Roy’s hand and kissing his head. God must make doing that okay for the love of your life.

People I haven’t seen in years traveled here from other states and cities. It made me so happy to see them and local friends/family. Chad and Chip’s family brought food for us and for friends/family who attended. It was a long evening but one filled with so much love. Roy’s remote control flying club members were there. Lots of family members were there. Our dear church friends were there as well. My littlest grandchildren were as sweet as could be playing in the playroom. The older ones behaved well too! That’s always a good thing.

My daughter in law Misty took care of printing out several pictures of Roy through the years and buying frames to put them in. I can’t tell you how wonderful that was for her to handle that. They were all perfect pictures. I have them around our home loving them here. We brought one of Roy’s remote control planes, his black cowboy hat, and other items that reflected his life.  The funeral home took care of gathering all those items together and placed them around our church for the funeral. I can’t tell you how amazing Brandon Thompson Funeral Home was. They think of everything and do it all so well.

Saturday, September 5th was Roy’s funeral. It feels so unreal to write that sentence. I want him back something fierce but that’s not God’s plan. I’m going to stop here and will write again when I can. Before I forget I will write next about the photo slide show and the trash bag.

Thank you to all who got me through that absolutely horrible time. I’ve been encouraged to continue writing and I will. Roy really loved the reaction folks had to our sharing our lives here. He helped me so much with this blog. He read it before and sometimes after I published it to correct my mistakes before they became public!

Have a Blessed week ya’ll. Please keep praying for me and our family.

 

09.07.20 The day Roy passed away September 1, 2020

I never thought my heart could hurt like this. My husband Roy died last Tuesday of a massive heart attack. I know millions before me have gone through this pain of losing a spouse. I’m not the only wife ever experiencing this but some of the time I feel like I am.

Our last day together started out really nice. Roy cut our grass and took care of our ducks. I pulled a bunch of weeds and did some rock painting. I cooked us a nice dinner of fresh green beans from our garden and jambalaya with shrimp and sausage.  He gave me a thumbs up on how it tasted.  That always makes a wife’s heart happy when feeding her man and him enjoying it.

About an hour or so later he was helping me work on our Sunday School’s prayer list, getting it ready to text to our class members. When we were done I went to the bathroom for just a minute or two.  When I came back Roy was dead.  A new neighbor of ours, Misty, that we didn’t even know came to her front door when I ran there to find someone to help me. She ran back ahead of me, got Roy on the floor and started chest compressions. The fire department and medics came to our house right away.

Both our sons, Chad and Chip, dropped everything and came to be with me right away. Our pastor and my Sunday School class teacher were there giving us so much comfort. The events after we left for the hospital went on for hours including attempts to get him airlifted to North Oaks. So many medical people worked on him but in the end, Roy couldn’t be revived.

We were able to be with him after all of the attempts to revive him were stopped. Those were cherished moments we would never have again. It is never a normal thing to be with your spouse’s lifeless body. I will always be thankful for those moments.

Since I have dementia we both thought I’d be the one to die first. God had a different plan. God’s plan right now is for Roy to be with him and for me to learn how to live without Roy. Can’t say I’m wild about this plan but it is God’s plan and I know he’ll walk beside me along this journey.

I didn’t think I would be able to write here for a long time after Roy’s death. My heart and mind are bursting with a need to share this time in my life so that maybe it will help someone else that is going through this or will be going through this. . I hope you will understand that I need this time to write as needed.

God Bless You All

 

 

09.01.20 My husband and best friend Roy Chauvin

I won’t be writing my blog for a while. My wonderful husband of 47 years Roy B Chauvin, passed away on Tuesday evening. You know he had been having heart problems but we thought he was getting better. This is his obituary online.

https://www.thompsoncares.com/obituaries/Roy-Chauvin-2/

I would appreciate prayers for me, our sons Chip and Chad, and their families. We weren’t ready to lose him but we all have the comfort of knowing he’s in Heaven with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

I don’t know when I will be able to write again but I will. Rosalyn Chauvin