December 28, 2012 11:05 PM

Remembering 30 years ago....

Barbara and her Ghia.jpg

                                         My SweetHeart when we first went out...

Don't know how much of the beginning of our story you all know, but we first went out together on Sept. 15th, 1982.  Told her the next day that I wanted to marry her and adopt her two daughters from her first marriage. We were both spiritual seekers (new age/eastern mysticism) but had no sense of morality so I moved in. Planned a marriage for the following Spring (awkwardly, the first date I gave her was the date of her first marriage....which I changed quickly.)  Everyone thought we were crazy and knowing the two of us as individuals,  it would be over soon and we'd be tornadoes in other lives soon.... But God was planning a shotgun wedding.  On Christmas Eve of that year, Barbara told me she was pregnant.  I felt immediately convicted....much to my shame, because of promiscuity in the past I knew I was responsible for at least two abortions....perhaps more. I was a man with bloody hands and knew that this woman was far more than I deserved and I could not/ would not desert her and her daughters. We were married at sunset nine days later by a justice of the peace at Jenner-by the-Sea, where the Russian River flows into the Pacific.

Been reliving and reflecting on those nine days thirty years we were told by family and friends that we were doing the wrong thing. I reminded her of that old Everly Bros. tune, "Stick with me Baby," (which I have embedded below with a great version by Alison Krause and Robert Plant.) It was during this time that we picked out the verse, "For He is our peace" that became so prophetic in our lives.  Though we did not have a proper relationship with God, He had one with us.....and we both knew in our hearts that we were doing what we were supposed to do.  That became God's pattern in our life together. So many times we did what God called us to do while conventional wisdom said we were being foolish.

These days are hard for me, but I know Barbara would be sharing with you what she was dealing with, so please bear with me.  While I was working today I stopped by her graveside....covered in snow. I miss her so and there were no eagles in the sky on this day... But the pain of loss goes on. Like that old Joni Mitchell song, "You don't know what you've lost til it's gone."  Through this lens of mourning I am seeing and remembering so many things that I dearly loved and appreciated about her life that went unacknowledged by myself.  Standing on that hill today over the river I really felt like a man cast adrift...a ship without an anchor.  That I had let her down. But then I realized the truth.... my life is unfinished, to continue without her.....Her race had been run.....and she had run it well... I am still on the field and my race is not yet done...and so my Dear Barbara, I thank you for the years you graced me with, and all you did to make me a better man...
Barbara in snow.jpg
"Thank You"

If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you.
When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me.

Kind woman, I give you my all, Kind woman, nothing more.

Little drops of rain whisper of the pain, tears of loves lost in the days gone by.
My love is strong, with you there is no wrong,
together we shall go until we die. My, my, my.
An inspiration is what you are to me, inspiration, look... see.

And so today, my world it smiles, your hand in mine, we walk the miles,
Thanks to you it will be done, for you to me are the only one.
Happiness, no more be sad, happiness....I'm glad.
If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you.
When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me.

Loving you always,

Posted in | Permalink


Still praying for you and your family.

Posted by: Thia | December 29, 2012 7:02 AM

I love you Dad.

Posted by: Ben | December 29, 2012 10:17 AM

So beautiful! You two are such an inspiration to others, showing God's grace through your words. Praying for you and knowing that God will guide you through.

Posted by: Launa | December 29, 2012 11:19 AM

I love you too Pop. Your feelings are so genuine and I wish I could help you in so many ways; I am here when you want to talk.

Posted by: Samantha | December 29, 2012 12:39 PM

Thank you for sharing. My heart aches for your family, especially during this time of the year. Praying for God's strength, comfort and peace to be yours.

Posted by: Debbie | December 29, 2012 1:06 PM

Both you and Barbara have helped me to see what I've had, and truly appreciate, before I could foolishly let it slip away. Just celebrated 30th anniversary on Wed. - renewed our vows. Both DH & I choked thru tears and smiles. Our kids were so happy.

Posted by: A-non-mouse | December 29, 2012 2:51 PM

Oh, look at Barbara's beautiful and mischievous smile. I see it in your girls. And all that energy leaps out at the viewer, like the thoroughbred spirit that Barbara was and still is. God set her on a path to run her race and she ran it flat out, never holding back. Thank you for sharing. My prayers for you and yours continue.

Posted by: Judy | December 29, 2012 3:10 PM

What a beautiful post! She was, physically, such a beautiful woman; and spiritually, gorgeous! What wonderful words of strength from you that show how much she meant to you. All husbands should be so in awe of their wives, with such humble respect and love. Your entire family continue in my prayers!

Posted by: Dirtdartwife | December 29, 2012 3:46 PM

Thank you for your transparency. Five years ago my only sibling, my sister, was killed in an auto accident. She left a husband of 18 years, children 16, 14, and 12, me, and our mom (who had already buried 3 husbands). She was 39. Your posts bring me back to those times and memories after Jennifer's death. Praying peace and grace for your family.

Posted by: Deborah | December 29, 2012 6:08 PM

Thank you, Tripp:) What a great post.

Posted by: Eileen | December 29, 2012 6:19 PM

Thank you, Tripp, for continuing to post. Barbara was such a gift to us all and so are you. Your beautiful family inspires us all. We're praying for you all through the holidays and beyond.

Posted by: Jan | December 29, 2012 8:18 PM

Praying for you, Tripp. She knew you loved her so much. You did not let her down!

Posted by: Kathy | December 29, 2012 10:47 PM

Beautiful! Thank you again, Papa Tripp for sharing more treasures from your life. You and your precious family continue to be in our prayers and we are so blessed to be privy to your insights and memories of your beautiful wife and of life together with her. (I can hear her cheering you on, with the great cloud of witnesses!)

Thank you again....Debbie K.

Posted by: Debbie Kierstead | December 30, 2012 12:22 AM

I second what Jan said, thank you for continuing to post. I pray for your family every night.

Posted by: Heather P | December 30, 2012 12:26 AM

You continue to be in my prayers. Your thoughts and words are so beautiful and inspiring. Thank you for sharing your heart with us.

Posted by: Jule | December 31, 2012 2:13 AM

I love this snazzy photo of Barbara. I can see the fire and energy in her smile. I enjoy learning of the sweet intimate details of how your lives came run your race together.

Tripp, I hope writing and sharing with us is as healing as it is for us to read. I pray for you often throughout the day and, just as when Barbara was with us, I continue to meet people every week that I point to this site for her guidance. I so appreciate that you've picked up the mantel and are carrying on.

Much love and prayers.......

Posted by: von | January 1, 2013 3:24 PM

Post a comment