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Until Tomorrow

 

It is getting late and I’m getting excited.  It is my birthday tomorrow, I will be 67 years old.  I look back on my life thinking I have had a good life with my wonderful husband Teddy.

I take off my slippers and lay down on the bed. I comb my hair and put on my best dress. I have left my memories on the bedside cabinet where I know my daughter will find them. 

My mind is relaxing now and I’m thinking of 32 years ago.  I had just got off the train looking for my sister, she is always late, I giggled to myself, then I saw her running, trying to hold on to her hat and calling my name.

 I giggled to myself as she took me in her arms saying “I’ve missed you so.  Bobby is waiting in the car, shall we go? We are not going home first,  I want you to meet some friends of mine.  I hope that you are not too tired.”Grabbing onto my suitcase, taking hold of my hand and walking back over the bridge, she said, “He’s looking forward to meeting you.” “Who is?” “You know, Teddy, I’m always talking about him.

He is the one that works in the newspaper office, he has read your book. He wants you to get it printed.” I just listened. Bobby said a quick hello as we climbed into the car. “Sorry, but you know what your sister’s like,” giving me a wink as he started the car.

Everything happened so fast when I’m with my sister. Everyone calls her Marge except me. “Well I am sorry to rush you,” Marjorie said, “but he is waiting.” I thought to myself well, he can wait.

 I desperately wanted a cup of tea. I thought she had read my mind when she blurted out, “There is a beautiful coffee shop around the corner from you, we can get a nice cup of tea there. Teddy’s there waiting.” I sat back in the car thinking what have I got myself into? We got out of the car.  My sister started to wave.

 I looked across the road and there was a gentleman waving. Marjorie said, “he is waiting.”  I must admit when we met he was polite enough to stand up and shake my hand.  “Lovely to meet you and may I call you Teddy?” With a smile, he took hold of my hand still holding it until I sat on the seat beside him.

“I have heard so much about you from your sister Marge.” I didn’t get the chance to say anything.  He just talked and talked and if that was not enough my sister joined in.  I thought, well I am here I might as well enjoy my cup of tea.

“We are all going to the hotel tomorrow evening,  would you like to come?”  Teddy asked. I was going to say No, I’m sorry, but Teddy jumped in again saying “I will pick you up at 6.30, is that okay?” My sister jumped in before I could say anything, “Yes, she will be ready.” I didn’t say another word. Bobby said, “We have to go, your sister is looking very tired.” Teddy apologised for keeping me there.

Without another word we stood up and walked away.“What do you think of Teddy?” my sister asked with a sigh.  I said “He is very nice,  but I am tired. I would like to rest awhile.” “Silly me,” Marjorie said. “Go, Bobby, go,” tapping him on the shoulder.

 I closed my eyes for a moment. I found myself back looking at my ceiling.  Where did the time go?  I have no regrets, just memories.  Looking back to the bedside cabinet, did I remember to leave my daughter the letter?  Looking across the room; Yes, I did. I’m sure my daughter will understand.

 She knows the last five years have not been easy for me.  It was the loneliness you see. We always did everything together. He never stopped loving me. When I first met him all those years ago, when he picked me up to go to the hotel evening, I thought, am I ever going to be able to get through this evening? But it was wonderful.

 Teddy introduced me to all his friends and they were so pleased to meet me.  When the music started he asked me could I please have this dance?   While we were dancing he whispered in my ear, “I’m going to marry you, you are going to be my wife.” I could not believe what he had just said.

 I said to him, “I loved you the first time I saw you” and then he whisked me around the dance floor singing in my ear. Everyone looked; we were the centre of attention and it felt wonderful.

That was the beginning and it never ended until Teddy died.  He never told me that he was sick, but apparently, the doctor said he had been sick for the last six months, but he did not want to worry me. I knew there was something wrong when I look back and I don’t know why I didn’t see what was there in front of me. I suppose you don’t.

 You don’t think that either one of you ever will die, it never entered my head.  I presumed that it was his age, but it wasn’t. People tell me all the time life goes on, but only if you want it to.

Then to get back to my daughter, she is a wonderful person.  She never says a cross word to anyone. We did not have any grandchildren because of my daughter’s circumstances, but we won’t go into that.

 I look at the clock, then look back, 15 minutes to go and it will be my birthday. I’m getting excited.  Back to my daughter, she is a daughter that anyone would be proud to have.  She is a nurse herself and she understands about life and death, I don’t think at all that she will be surprised, but this I do know, my daughter will forgive me.

My eyes are getting very tired now as I look back to the clock. The hands do not seem to have moved very far and yet it seems a long time since I last looked at the clock.

I can hear my heart beating as I listen for my husband Teddy.  Will he come?  I hope so.  I can hear the music.  Is it?  Yes, it is!  It is the music that we danced to all those years ago. 

My memory goes back in time again.  I can feel my Teddy’s arms around me and I can hear him whispering in my ear, “I’ve been waiting, my love,” as he dances me around the dance floor for the last time.

*********************************

 

This is another one of my beautiful stories coming though by channelling

I do not know much about anyone else, I just know about myself. If you ask me about the war, it was a waste of time and a waste of good lives. For what? I grew up thinking of the good of mankind. What happens to all those mistakes that people made in the name of wars and protecting their country? What happened to all the millions of men who died protecting that thought? We have to feel that it was worth something to die for,’ the question is,’ where do I go from here?

I am about to end my life – a life that I can no longer live. I looked down at the gun in my hand, with no regrets of what I am about to do. I look to the sky and call out, “If there is a God, please help me.” The only thought that came into my mind was about my friends who I had to leave behind on the battlefield. I felt my hand squeeze the trigger. The music is getting louder as I close my eyes, tears fall down my cheek. Was this the end?

This is his Story

What is happening to me? Your face fills my memories but the memories only bring heartaches of a long time ago. I had such dreams. I had not long left school when mamma said, “It is best to stay on a couple of years longer, to get a good education.” She was right. Mamma was always right. I can hear the clock ticking in the background as I remember the words I said to my Anna a long time ago

The war had just begun in Vietnam and I found myself one of those people who felt that they had to fight for their country. Yes, I did fight for my country but did not understand why? I just did it So many things were going on at that time. People I knew were lying dead at my feet Today I can still hear them screaming. I can still see my friends lying there begging for someone to put a bullet through their head so they do not have to suffer anymore

Some of my friends just walk around in a daze, trying to make sense of what is going on. We were all confused young men who did not have the proper training to face what we had to face here.

When I came home, I did not walk into my mother’s kitchen – someone had to push me in a wheelchair. I was not the same person who had left a long time ago. Now. I have no dreams of the future. I have left them all back there.

My heart ache as I let go of the girl I loved with all my heart. I never stopped loving her. Day after day she would call and beg me to talk to her but I refused, until one day, she stopped calling. I heard that she had found herself a nice young man. I used to watch them walking around the town hoping that they would not see me.

Damn the war! What else can it take away from me? Dear God, is this how my life is going to be? I close my eyes for a moment and you are there? I squeeze my eyes closed tight but the tears still come pouring through.

I heard someone screaming, someone calling for help. As the last thought comes into my mind, I see myself standing up from the wheelchair and walking towards a beautiful light. My friends are calling my name.

As I proudly walk towards them, I turn around and I am looking back at someone in a wheelchair with a bullet hole through his head. There are no regrets.

My mates put their arms around my shoulder. At last, I feel a sense of belonging as we all talk at once. There is no looking back now, only looking forward to a lifetime of memories. Memories that will now stay in the past .

By Pam Pam McCagh

 

 

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