It’s Friday!

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Happy Friday to you!    Hope you had a week filled with peace, clarity, joy, and faith!   You define what your faith is!   But it seems in this world right now, it’s becoming harder and harder to believe that things are “going to get better”.     Maybe they will, but yesterday I met someone who really lifted my battered disbelief.

First, this person offered to me, free of charge, her painting stash.  She and her husband are moving, and she just didn’t want to pack it.   The minute I walked into her house I knew I was privileged to meet this sweet woman.    As we sat on the floor in her once dining room, with piles of “things” being packed, given away, I felt like I had known her forever.

She shared with me how she had a special needs child, who lived to be 24, many years past what doctors had predicted.   Love exuded from her as she spoke of him, it was an incredibly beautiful, and tragic story.

My curiosity arose long before I showed up at her door.     How many people do you meet who are openly giving, and offering of their treasures, and stories?   Have had dealings lately with a greedy person, so this was extra special to me.

With incredible grace and fortitude she shared her stories and excitement about a new chapter in her life, and I knew right then, I have received much more from her than the bundles of paint, surfaces and books she so graciously gave me.

I needed this experience.  I really did.    I left her house with my car full, but my heart fuller.    I had just been privy on a special soul, a giving soul, a healthy, beautiful, kind and loving soul.    I thought how her husband obviously knew what he was doing when he married her!   She’s a golden nugget, so to speak in terms of treasures.   Such wisdom, such beauty, such kindness.   I walked away hoping I will never forget this beautiful experience.

Such beauty does exist, and I was fortunate enough to be on the receiving end of her generosity, both with many material items, but more importantly, her happy, peaceful, beautiful soul.

I hope you get to experience this, too.   It renewed my faith in mankind.  Yes, I said it, I’ve been feeling fairly discouraged of late.    She gave of herself with little effort and absolutely no airs about her.     I am very grateful for all!!!

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Walking through grief

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The past couple days have been rough, with migraines and frustrating bitchiness.   This morning I was allowing myself to get really bent out of shape over nothing, when I sat down and jumped on facebook.      I hope the migraine(s) are behind me, I think it’s related to barometric pressure, my head feels like it isn’t attached to my body.  Strange, and adding to the Bitch of the Year award!

As I surveyed my facebook feed, I read a post from a friend who is really a very lovely woman, a woman of faith, ridiculously talented, and kind to the core.     She posted about two children who touched her deeply today, and made her smile while she was gassing up her car.    It lightened up my mood, until close to the end where she spoke about telling the kids mother how much their kindness and friendliness meant to her, and today or all days, as her sister died early this morning of cancer.   Tears flowed down my face then.

I immediately sent her a message, offering condolences, and thanking her for her share.   My mind swept back to the very days my sisters succumbed to cancer.    I was broken, and I was angry at God for allowing this to happen.  And so began a war between he and me, for months on end.   I defied my morning praises, and no longer prayed at all.   How could he allow this to happen?

In time, I learned and accepted that death is a part of our life, and that fairness doesn’t really play a role here.  But my friend, who had just said goodbye to her sister, was talking about how good God is, and how much this experience helped her, and made her smile.   I cried as I reread her beautiful, lovely, words.    How amazing that she was at peace, or I should say, more peace than I had when my sisters took their last breaths.

I sat in silence, trying to compose myself, get my emotions into check, and while I would like to say the bitchiness melted away, it did not, but I was so moved by her share, and her eloquence, awestruck with her compassion and faith.     When she replied to my message she spoke words I understand too well, about not knowing how she will do this without her sister, her first best friend.    Her words lent clarity to me of how I felt, too.

I remember thinking how cruel it was that the birds still chirped, that life still went on, even though my sisters lives were over.   I remember people telling me “time will heal”.  I also remember being firmly (and probably belligerently) adamant that NO ONE would tell me how to grief, how to walk through this atrocity which had been handed down to my family.   Grief is a journey, a necessary journey that is so individualized.   There is no right or wrong way to grieve, though I hope I handled it with even a small portion of the grace that my friend did this morning.

At this time another friend texts me that she knew and was related to the pedestrian who was hit in Brattleboro yesterday and who died later from her injuries.    Many eyewitnesses have shared that she walked right out in front of the car, the driver was not at fault.  But that driver?  Is devastated.    I saw pics of him with his head in his hands, crying.  Of course he was.  What person wouldn’t be?    And then she shared that this person had also just lost two siblings to cancer.    I was relaying all this to my mom, and we shared how grief is an alternate existence, if you will.   You’re not in your right mind, your preoccupied, sad, emotional, and that may be a part of why she aimlessly walked into traffic.  How incredibly sad.

So, tonight, as I write this, I’m thinking about all that transpired this morning and how it changed and altered my piss poor thinking.   I am still working through some crap, but for the most part, I’ll be crawling into bed very grateful that my day may be frustrating, and my head may ache, but I had a fairly uneventful day given two other peoples lives that changed drastically in a moments time.

I wish you a restful nights sleep, and an uneventful (almost boring) day tomorrow.  Life can change on a dime, and it does.  We find ourselves walking through life without those we love most in the world, and I have since learned that the birds still chirping as we walk through grief is really a gift, because life does go on for some.    How easily, how naturally we take things for granted, at least I do.   And I think I’m a pretty grateful person, but obviously imperfect and still learning about life.   Aren’t we all?

 

“Signs”

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This past week I spent a few days in Maine, York to be exact.   Being around water is super wonderful for me, it helps ease the binds that chain me.   The ocean?  Makes me realize how small my problems are.  That is not to say that my problems aren’t important to me, they are, and I’m facing life with zest and experience, knowing a higher power has always had my back, and I highly doubt he’ll abandon me now.    But just as anytime something bad happens to you and you never really have to look real far for someone who has it not only worse than you, but much worse, and they handle it gracefully, the ocean reminds me that the reaches of self importance in extreme can be like a tital wave, gushing in here, there, everywhere until you are no longer focused on that which needs work.

I was thinking about what it’s like when you lose your identity.  For me, I was a art teacher.  I travel taught, and published in magazines, self published, even authoring a book many moons ago now.   So when that seized to exist, who am I?  What am I accomplishing?  Am I worthy of life?    So now, just these questions you probably are saying “Lighten the hell up, Donna!”.    This is where my brain goes.    I felt purpose when I taught.   I remember when I cut way back on travel teaching, a battle five years ago with depression and anxiety so high I don’t care to even think about it.    I couldn’t function.   I had all I could do to take care of myself, physically, mentally.    So teaching was cast aside and so were many “friends” who didn’t accept “the new me”.    Maybe it’s in my head, but maybe not.  When you are no longer supplying people with what they want, or need, does your existence go away?   Because if it does?   I’m here to tell you, these people are not your friends.   Friend’s stick with you through the challenges of life, and there are MANY challenges in life.  And those who don’t?   Doesn’t mean they weren’t your friend, or that they don’t care.  Perhaps they don’t.  But It’s okay.  It really is.   Because new, good, fun, meaningful things are new people are awaiting your arrival!

I’m about to embark on a “come back” if you will.   But not really a come back, but a new chapter in the life and times of Donna Scully.   Not really sure what will work for me, but I know I loved to teach, and if I went into a class in a bad mood, when I left it, I was singing and smiling.  (Insert Rocky Balboa theme song here).   KIDDING!  Have a lot of things going on, excited and happy about that.  Stay tuned!

I’ve been thinking about how painful and disappointing it can be when you are treated differently because for what ever reason, you are no longer offering what you once did.  Who is not to say that you aren’t better then you ever were?  Seriously?

I have a friend who was unfriended by many “friends” because of his political view.   A “star” to them at one time, now, forgotten.   It has to hurt.  It did when long time friends did that to me, but I’ve long since made peace with all that.    I really have.   I believe when doors close, windows open, and new adventures will reveal themselves.

I’m a creative soul, a good soul.  I am kind, honest, caring, and I love fiercely.   But age and experience has taught me that not everyone is worthy of time (and likewise, I’m sure).   So I’m rather excited about “new beginnings” that will define itself mid term.   I look for signs, pray for guidance, and am never disappointed with what comes to replace the old.    The problem I have is hanging onto what once was.    I white knuckle it until I’ve made the step of acceptance, and USUALLY when I can’t decide what is next for me, it is because it hasn’t yet been revealed.

I remember a day when I was on my way to a Michael’s, probably 30 miles from my home.  On my way there I was asking my higher power “Should I start designing in needlecraft again?”    Not five minutes later, upon entering Michael’s and heading back to the yarn department a woman I hadn’t known said my name.  “Donna Scully?”  Oh boy, how do they know me?   Anyway.  She introduced herself as a couple of my students mom.  Had recognized me from magazine pics, I guess.    (Miracle there).   Anyway, she said “Guess what I’m doing here?”  I look down at her basket which was full of this one beautiful colored yarn.   “Making a sweater?” I asked?   With that, she pulled out one of my Leisure Art booklets that has long since been retired, it was an instructional pamphlet with 5 of my sweater designs in it.  “Nice!” I said!    “Thanks for sharing!”

As I walked back to the department after our conversation I looked up, smiled and said “Thank you!”    The experience justified spending more money than I was planning on!  (I’m good at justifying when it comes to my creative efforts).

I had an epiphany a few weeks ago… alas, direction, I know what I’m doing, and the direction I’m supposed to head in.  But all eyes are not on the prize, but on what presents itself because things rarely ever turn out the way I think they are going to.   I have endless stories of this type of event happening with me.   Like one time thinking maybe I’d sell my house and move away.  To where?  Was in CT with a close friend, we were on a Craigslist adventure.     During our conversation I said I didn’t yet “feel it”.  I didn’t know where I should be, I just know I felt disheveled.   Just as I say that a sign (town sign) showed up on our right.  “Vernon” (which is also the Town in which I live in another state!”   We both laughed.  I guess I’m supposed to stay put!

Do you get these signs?  Are you listening and open to them?   I bet signs are all around you, are you open to seeing or hearing about them?

Prozac peonies

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I started painting another secretary front (slant front that drops down for reveal).    They look like old fashioned roses.   Now, maybe some could just accept that, and it will go up for sale and whoever buys it, whatever they see is what the flower is???  But I can’t.

In past my frustrations I’d sand it down and start over.   But I was doing that a lot lately, as well as having preconceived notions of what others are doing or thinking.   I set it down last night, instead of heading to the sander.   This morning, to my dismay, they still don’t look like peonies, so now I’m starting them “again”.

I’m off kilter today.   I should know better than to try to paint something I haven’t painted before, but I guess I like a challenge?    The idea was to paint this desk without stress, without worry.   Use an old pattern to put it in so all I was doing was painting.  It doesn’t work that way with me.  Just like buying something for my home.   I have to alter it.   Rarely have I brought something home that I haven’t “fixed” or “changed”.   I know this is the right brain, and that its a gift to be creative and to be able to paint, to create, but sometimes it’s overwhelming.  Why can’t I just accept things as they are?    I’m not talking about life here, truly I’m talking about pretties!

And I’m not one to hide my true feelings (ask my friends), I mean, I am honest.  So today, I am struggling with painting these peonies and I’m very grateful I am on prozac!

What would happen if I just left them as wild roses?    Is this the perfectionist in me driving me over the edge today?    I’m stubborn, more than stubborn, which along with everything else has it’s pros and cons.

So I’m going back to sit down at my painting table.    I hope to accomplish a good looking peony.    If it doesn’t happen?   Will I have the fortitude to walk away like I did last night?  As if when I come back it will have magically morphed into a peony?    Time will tell.

Hope you’re having a great day, I am determined to, too!   Going to drown these voices in my head!

 

Holy Heat

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Heat has hit here in New England.   We went from having our furnaces on for a week, to installing my portable air conditioners in one day!   I guess I really should think about shaving my legs.

Had a great day of painting.   Let’s see, today I sketched, painted, grooved to some great music!  My mom is staying with me for a few weeks, anyway I thought she was outside so when Michael McDonald came on, I really rocked it!     I didn’t put my brush down for the fake mic, but close.    I stand up, dance, and walked into my living room and there sits my mom.     “Did you enjoy the concert, mom?”

Painting vegetables, fruit, sunflowers, and sketched my first person today.  He needs some work, and I can’t stand this guy, in fact, I loathe him, but I’ve been studying a picture of him for weeks, thinking about how exactly to draw it, what are his strongest features?  Maybe I’ll use it for target shooting!

I have four inches of roots showing on my head.   Is it not a wonder I have been using the widest headband I could find?  Thankfully tomorrow, hopefully, I’ll look human again.  I don’t know about having my hair done and shaving my legs on the same day.  It just might be too much excitement!

Still standing with our President!    I believe when the heats on, you step in and do what you can to support the person.

Well, I think I’ll head to bed early, have some research to do, and I love doing that when I crawl into my cozy spot, give thanks for another day, and pray for my family, my friends, my country, my President, and all service peeps, veterans, AND…. whoever reads this!

 

 

 

 

Let’s talk politics!

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My heart is heavy, and my patience has worn thin.   Eight years ago when I started to vocalize that I didn’t like our current President, I became a “racist”.   If you weren’t an Obama lover, you were a racist.   I trudged through both of his terms, watching more and more things fall apart in our country.    Anytime I spoke of my feelings, out came the racist card.  This wasn’t the country I grew up in.  What happened to it?  Where did it go?

Finally it’s time for Obama to be gone.  Who does the Democratic party choose?  Hillary Clinton.  HILLARY CLINTON!   The woman who lies upon every breath she takes!  The woman whose husband made a mockery out of our Country when he wasn’t having sex with “that woman”, (I remember the testimony)  but then we learn of a blue dress, stained with his semen.   I’m only going to mention the cigar.  To bring such dishonor disgusted me.    Only to have them steal the good silverware and more when they left the  White House.   How does one conveniently forget this?   Or the accusations of rape?   All these women coming out of the woodwork were silenced.  How?  Hillary Rodman Clinton, that’s how.  The list is long and distinguished, as well as the list of mysterious deaths around people she knew, worked with, starting with the first she had supposedly had an affair with.   But let’s drop all that.  It’s okay.     It doesn’t count.  Because Hillary is the next best thing to sliced bread!   Well, good for you, but don’t expect me to jump on your band wagon liking her, believing in the persona she showed to the public.  Do some research and if you have guts enough, you may just find out she wasn’t the “good woman” she portrayed she was.

You know what?  I have a lot of democratic friends.    And since deciding not to vote for the scandalous, vicious, lying woman that LIED TO US, made up a story about a video on You Tube that had provoked the “problem” in Benghazi.  LIED!    Four good men died that day.  Not just died, but BRUTALLY, horrendously, in a manner that I hope we will never see or hear about again.   I don’t have the energy to bring up the deceit that surrounds this woman, I only mention a few, to make a point.   Because I opted NOT to vote for her, and I voted for  Trump.  In my eyes he was and still was the best candidate.  That’s my opinion, you’re entitled to yours.  But what you aren’t entitled to is to plaster your views all over my property!   Why is this so hard for people to understand?  It’s simple, if you want respect, give respect.  But I confess,  I’d vote for Charles Manson before I’d give another vote to a Clinton.  Just saying.

Now, as I speak out about how this political narcissistic woman (who screwed Bernie, by the way, but again, we can forget that…) I then became a misogynist,  a bigot, and Mrs. Clinton herself labeled me a “deplorable”.   Let’s not forget that I’m a xenophobic!    Interesting.    Interesting because all the while I was researching, and making an educated decision on WHO to vote for, my eyes couldn’t believe what I was reading, seeing.  This woman is calling ME a deplorable?   Seriously?

Now we have President Donald J Trump.    Who isn’t taking any salary!   Really?  And those of you who THINK you are spreading the truth with your belligerent stance “not my president” on your facebook?   Put your money where your mouth is.   ACT.  Contact your state government, do something!  But to sit and berate daily, and drag us all through it with you, it’s long past ridiculous and I’m long past patience.   And those of you (media, and some folk) who support the left who are making up lies, (and mind you, I’m not even going to touch what I think of Obama or his wiretapping games.  He, the Saint who is now collecting major money for speeches.  How does that grab ya?)    What is he speaking about, how to divide a nation?   Because he’s good at that!    I’ll give him that one.)   Donald J Trump did NOT divide this Nation, he inherited it.  And the hatred that we are seeing from the left wasn’t brought on by Donald J Trump’s presidency, it revealed it!

A couple of my many gay friends who I stood behind and beside since their early teens, at a time when it wasn’t so acceptable, they were the first to name call, unfriend me.   Remind me why we were friends?  Because friends don’t do that to other friends.    The last unfriend came a few days ago after I clicked “like” on Donald J Trump.  This was from a guy with political intentions and whom I really believed in, believed he could make a difference, but what does he do?  Threatens the new President in such a post that I was embarassed for him.    “If you come for this, if you come for that..”   Now I believe he would fit very well in the political arena.  Why?  Because he cannot be friends with me because I don’t see things his way.  Oh yes, by God, we need another politician with this attitude!    Good luck to you, and I’m upset with myself that I’m even disappointed in who you turned out to be.  But I guess we’re even, because according to your views “You’ve showed me evidence and proof of Trump’s whatever, I don’t even know what to call it, other than calling Trump all the names I’ve been called, and on my facebook pages!  Not just personal, but my business page.

I still stand behind Trump.   He is OUR President.    And did you notice all those “celebs” who were going to move out of our Country if he got elected…. which ones have moved?????  NONE that I know of.     So much for taking a stand!  Your words mean nothing, NOTHING now.

I haven’t seen President Trump take any gay rights away, have I missed it?   I haven’t seen him do half the things that were largely blown out of proportion by his “haters”, including the media.  And ya know?   “Haters” is putting it mildly.    As much as I, (remember, the racist?) hated his policies, I wasn’t disrespectful.   I waited for his term to be up and helped place the person I felt was best for the job.

Now not only am I all of those names, but it’s in my face every day.  Everyone is afraid to say anything because Lord only knows what will come of it!    I just can’t believe this stuff.   I mean if you’re in college and you have to miss time because Trump was elected?   Life is going to eat you up, because I’m here to tell you?  Life isn’t easy!

Today I deleted someone that I love dearly from my facebook.  I did that because she came and posted insulting comments.   I’d read her posts, wonder why, now that she is married and happy, why would she posts daily about “not her president?”   Truly the quality of her life is more than just hating Trump.  Where were the pictures of husband and wife doing nice and fun things together?  Truly, she can see beyond the lies and hatred that is coming from “the tolerant ones”?   I guess not.   So, sadly I unfriended her because if she can write those things on my facebook?  “Yikes, Donna what happened to you?   Donna I feel sorry for you in so many ways” (trust me, she wasn’t sorry because my situation warranted sympathy.   A friend wouldn’t do that.   Accepting that is very painful, but it will be okay.

Oh?  You should know,  I have been a registered Democrat since I was 18.   I voted for Bill Clinton the first time, and I voted for Obama the first time and I voted for Bernie in the Primaries, even though I do not want to see socialism in our country.  I don’t think we can afford it.   MY OPINION.  This week I will be going into Town Office and changing my party.  And other than writing a blog about my feelings once in a while, and an occasional post on my facebook,  I’m not in anyone’s face about it.    I don’t unfriend people because of their politics.  But I do unfriend them for treating me badly!

So, not only did I lose a friend today that I’ve known since the 80’s, but I also went to see my girlfriend who I mentioned in my last blog, and her family was there saying goodbye to her.    It hit me.  I couldn’t talk to them long, and I couldn’t stay, I fell apart in tears.    It’s happening very fast.   And while I pray for her, that God will be merciful, and won’t let her suffer, I wanted to sit with her again, I wanted to laugh with her again.   Because her laugh was contagious.   And I had a lot of fun with her, and when I was struggling through depression, she was right there beside me.

I had dropped off her favorite donuts the other night, she was asleep.  I didn’t want to disturb her sleep, but I left them on her table.    I had hoped, and still do, that I could get her favorite Chinese food, because eating, and unhealthy eating was something we shared.  We have the same demons here.

So now I cry, and my tears fall on the canvas I’m working on.   It’s okay, it’s fruit, it looks like dew drops.    And I’ll cry for the loss of a friendship that I hope to always hold dear.  And I will.   I’ll get beyond this.  It’s like a death, you make resolve with it only because you have no other choice.   The missing never stops, but somewhere along the line of grief you have to accept it.   And while it’s sad, I feel good about making the decision to not accept her remarks.     As mentioned above, my patience has worn thin.  When a left wing friend starts talking on my facebook page, I’m waiting for the insult, for the refute, because it’s been eight long years of this name calling.    And not yet six months since Trump took office.

Even if I didn’t like President Trump, I would support him.  But I DO like him.   I don’t like things about him, but I believe in his abilities, and I believe our Country needs this administration financially.    I think it’s time for all people, all parties, to put differences aside and do what they can to make this country work again.   Healthcare?  Needs to be bipartisan.   The post that brought the end of the friendship was actually about getting involved, not just bitching, but doing something about the things you don’t like about the bill.   It’s not good for me, I will make sure my voice is heard.   BOTH SIDES, ALL SIDES need to come together for this healthcare bill.    But for some reason the left doesn’t quite understand that the right?  Has the same needs there.    As if this was put into play to destroy or kill them.   Such drama, such bad drama?   Doesn’t fit into my life now.    I’ve survived a whole lot in my life,  and by coming through it, my view is different, and that’s a good thing, regardless of who agrees or disagrees with me.   My views have value, I’m not a dumb uneducated woman, and nor am I any of those names I’ve been called.   But stand up for yourself once?    You’d think the world fell apart.

So once again, if you can’t handle what I’ve said about your candidates, please do the kind polite thing.  Just walk past this.   Why do the left feel the need to plaster their views and thoughts on everything?   And mind you, I do not mean to group all Democrats into the same bucket, I apologize if I did that.   That would be a bit ironic, considering what I’m complaining about!  But for those of you intolerants?  Those of you who think it’s okay to abuse the rest of us who don’t agree with you? Those very people who will read this and say “listen to the whiner?”   I’m not a whiner.  I’m setting boundaries.  Unless you can respect me and my views, as I will you, then please move along.  God help you when all the trials and things come out about the wrong doings that have gone on in this country.  It will come.  The truth always comes out, and when it does, where will you be?   I’ll be right here, speaking my truth, and respecting your rights, is it to ask for you to respect mine?

Furthermore?  I think it’s time for all to stop looking at your rights, and defending and drama about something that isn’t even happening, and start asking yourself this:

“Ask not what you can do for me, ask what you can do for your country!”     It’s called patriotism!

You have my permission to share this, if you want.    I know I’m not alone here.

 

 

Sadness

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Today was a challenging day for me.   As fate would have it, I learned that someone I care about is ill, very ill.   Further complicated by a parting of ways between us.  I couldn’t even remember the incident, or exactly what happened, I knew I was upset, but the “final” visit, I have no memory of.    When I learned of this, haphazardly, I felt like I was going to toss my cookies.    It doesn’t sound good, not at all.

I had also been inadvertently told that she had just learned of this last night, and was home from hospital today.  All I could think of is being left alone to think about what she was told.  I had a full list of things to do today, rose early to do them.  The list was set aside two hours upon rising after learning this news.

When you learn something like this, it really doesn’t matter what happened.  I think it’s important for each person to acknowledge and say what they couldn’t say prior.  And that was the case when I walked into her home, her bedroom where she was resting.  I didn’t know how or what I’d find, I just said a prayer for strength and courage and went and sat with her on the bed.  It’s a HUGE bed that she hates.   I wasn’t sure if she was happy to see me or not, but I grabbed her very soft hand and said “I’m sorry”.     She looked away.   “I have something to tell you”, I nodded.   What she shared next was one of the “moments” I hadn’t recalled, and a bit of it came back.    She expressed how hurt she was, and how she didn’t even want to address it or try to fix it with me.  “Friends don’t do that to other friends”.   I said “Your right, they shouldn’t”.

It wasn’t easy hearing how I had hurt her.   And sadly I don’t recall the incident she spoke of, I had thought our estrangement was just a mutual thing after a couple bad experiences.  I said the words that I needed to say, “I’m sorry I hurt you”.

I helped adjust her pillows, asked if there was anything I could do for her.  Asked if she wanted me to leave, “no, I don’t want you to leave”.     Then she shared another incident that hurt her and I guess the look on my face said what I didn’t need to verbalize.   It was nothing I had done, nothing I could do.   She said I’m sorry, I thought you had.

My mom showed up a few minutes later, I guess she knew where to find me.  I had dropped her off to get her car that was being serviced, the second $400 we put into it this month, and just drove away.     I didn’t know if I should go see her.  I wanted to.  But I didn’t want to upset her.  I just didn’t want her sitting alone with this news.   What happened between us didn’t matter, was unimportant.

She was very tired, and apologetically needed to give in to sleep.  We said our goodbyes.   I held her hand before I left and told her I would be in touch, and that she could call me if she wanted or needed something.   She thanked us for coming and said “Donna, I’m really glad you came”.    As I walked out, drove home, I felt numb.   But numbness isn’t really the word for it, if it hurts, its not numb, right?

This is a person who I had spent many hours with, driving around back roads, in my home, or hers.  She’s almost 20 years older than me,  I’ve always tended to have older friends.   We have shared with each other things we’ve never shared with another.   We were good, close friends.   I was frustrated with her about a few things that need not be shared.  I was even angry at one point.    It wasn’t until she had brought up what she needed to say that I vaguely remembered it.

I thought about the couple things that I had remembered, that annoyed me.   And I questioned, was she sick then?  Is that why she forgot to do what she promised to do?    And at that very moment I was reminded AGAIN, how important it is that we be kind to others.  We know not what will eventually unveil itself.   It never occurred to me that she was sick when this broken promise happened.   I felt like shit, for a few minutes.  I allowed myself to feel bad about that, but then I had to forgive myself.  I didn’t know.  And it wasn’t that I was unkind to her, although her words said it was a look I gave her.

We think we have all the time in the world to make amends, forgive, or fix things.   We don’t.   This was a blatant reminder for me of the things I take for granted.  And I’m a pretty grateful person.    But I guess I had more to learn.

So, I decided I needed to go to bed, and I opened my bedroom windows.  We are being plummeted with rain.  Rumors are there was a tornado 40 miles from us.   I laid in bed, realizing, I needed to write about this.   It’s all consuming.    And now I’ll go crawl back into bed and listen to the rain fall, and think of what perfect weather it is for this day.   It should be a dismal, damp, wet night both inside and outside of my home.     Because today was a hard day, and I’m very saddened by what I have learned.

That’s all I need to say.  The rest I will wrestle with myself.    If there’s someone you care about and are at odds with, rethink it.   Is it really that important?  Do you have both sides?  Is the silence worth the loss of time?    Only you can answer that.

Grateful I went to see her.   If you want to say a prayer for her, I’m sure she would appreciate it.     Goodnight.

 

Acknowledgement

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For those of you who have experienced the loss of someone close to you, you will understand what I am writing about.     It never goes away, at least not for me.

Fourteen years ago today my kid sister died at the young age of 38.   She had been diagnosed just ten months before with Ovarian Cancer.   I’m not sure what hurts the most.   The journey through it, where we did our best to comfort her and bring her to any treatment allowed, or the endless missing.  I think it’s the missing.

Fourteen years and I still cry when I acknowledge this.  But if I don’t, it makes its way through illness or pain, so it’s best to nod to the memory than deny it, at least for me.

At 37 she and her partner had just bought a house and had moved in just two weeks prior to the emergency surgery that was previously scheduled a week or two later.   I remember it all so well, and I’m trying hard to not go there today.  To just honor her, and tell you what a great person she was.

I can tell you that she worked very hard and knew how to play.  She had a boat, snowmobiles, a toy for every season.   She loved to fish, to play sports, and was a natural athlete.   She had an old soul, I think about this often, wondering if this played a part in her short life.  A natural observer, she was always warning me when to shut my big trap, or when I had gone past “obnoxious” she called it.   Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.  It’s one that I experience a lot when I think about her.

One would think that after fourteen years you wouldn’t on occasion say to yourself “I have to call her, and tell her this!”    It happens less each passing year, but it still happens.

She was my dads bud.  I mean that with every part of my being.  She loved hockey, she loved fishing and shared these things with our dad.   We all share memories of this with her.   It was rather comical last year when my father admitted one day “Okay, Darlene was my favorite”.   The three of us laughed until tears came out of our eyes.  “What?”  “I’m sorry” he said.   “Um dad, we have known this FOREVER!”    I think he really believed it would shock us.   NOT.   I was sitting beside her on her couch the day she learned she was not going to recovery from this, and she called dad to tell him.  “I’m sorry, dad, I’m so sorry”.

So it was on this day that my, our lives changed.  For years I described things as “happened before she died, or happened after she died”.   I didn’t mean to.  It was just a game changer.    My life changed.  I changed.

I remember asking my cousin Marie, who came down to sit with me just hours after I learned she had died “How am I supposed to stop loving her?”   “You never will, Donna” she said.   How did she know?    It was through my sisters death and living life without her that I learned, love doesn’t stop just because someone you love died.   Nor does life stop, as cruel and vulgar as it seems at the time.   “How can the birds still sing?  How can people laugh, how can anything go on when my life has just come to a screaching halt?”   But it does.  But I have learned something beautiful within all the sadness and that is that love doesn’t ever stop, for me it continued and miraculously grew and still does, all these years later.

So on this day, I acknowledge that hope changes.   At first you pray for a cure, you pray for treatment to work, and then when that stops working, you pray for strength and a new doctor, another treatment, and more.   That is until you realize the suffering is going on too long, and you start to pray for God to be merciful with her, with them.  Please, take her soon.   Yes, hope changes.

I miss you every day.  There hasn’t been a day in fourteen years you’ve been gone that I don’t think of you.  You are part of me, you always will be.    I can still close my eyes and see your face, the little tiny mole above your eyebrow, and see that beautiful smile that radiated wherever it was shown.

Time does teach us how to coexist with such loss, but it doesn’t heal the broken heart.  I think because even when you pray for an end to the pain, and there is relief when that happens, the missing?  It never stops.

 

(end note:  I wrote this and posted it on 4/8 but for some reason it’s showing the 9th which I find interesting, because I actually found out about it just minutes after midnight on the 9th)

 

 

Angst

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For the last week my mind and spirit have been hijacked by the powerful entity of fear, uncertainty, and anxiety.  It invaded my brain, and then quickly took over what seemed to be my soul, leaving me reaching out to anything that I could hold onto.

I’m not shy to talk about my mental illlness, I do so in hopes of helping another, because when all is said and done, I know I’m not alone here.   But I am always leery about sharing too much, because people do treat you differently.   It’s a hard fact.   The talons of mental illness are sometimes ignored, and certainly mistreated, some due to ignorance, and others?  Fear!

The grip this trip was treacherous.  And I didn’t help myself by reaching out to another until last night when others reached out to me.  Oh how potent a secret battle that carries its venom best when we are in isolation from the world.     

My anxiety and fears are very real.  And I haven’t experienced this intensity of anxiety in years.  I will admit tonight, I should have been in a hospital, getting help, but after how many years in therapy, what else is there to say?   I recall a House, MD episode where he walks out of his therapy session and says “You don’t have any answers”.

What amazes me this evening, as I sit here writing this blog, is where my mind was just mere hours ago.  Nothing has changed in my setting, nothing has changed in my reality, except that I did, with the help of many cherished prayers and encouragement from friends, face my fears today.  Tonight I am exhausted, worn like an old penny, and while my anxiety is there, I’m practicing letting it be, letting the anxiety reveal itself, and trying everything I know not to feed it or let it overpower me again.   Feeding it got me into a full fledge panic attack earlier, where I was grasping for breath, sweat pouring off me, and had to sit with my head in my hands for several minutes because I was borderline passing out.  Yes, that awful place I’ve known a few times before.  If you’ve never encountered such, I am both happy and envious of you.

My ditzy little old cat has stayed by my side for days.  Mommy wasn’t healthy, and her steadiness and loyalty clings to my heart.

I really don’t care to share anymore tonight.   As I said earlier, I’m spent, and I’m hoping that with meds I will be gifted with a good nights sleep.  Rest assured I will be on my knees tonight praying that I do not wake up like I have the past couple mornings.   But in case I do, I need a plan.  So I’m working on a little “cheat sheet” note to myself for morning.  And this blog serves as a reminder to my saner, calmer self and conscience.

Earlier I sat down, with John Denver ( my roots) playing in the background, and started painting a small daisy.  Something cheery, something positive before I retire.  Revisiting “Let it Be” was what I needed.  I closed my eyes and let the music take me where I needed to go.  To the many dark places I’ve survived in my life, and that this?  This I’m determined will not have extended stay.  I cannot afford it, physically, mentally, spiritually.

I welcome your prayers, positive energy over the next few weeks as I find my way through this “episode” for lack of a better word.

My greatest wish for myself, and for all, for that matter,  in not wealth, but peace.  I welcome it’s return, and will strive to achieve it and then hold onto it.    Peace.

Peace to you, too.

 

 

 

Mental slag

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Today has proven to be a challenging day for me.  The first thing I did besides feed the lippy cat that was ready to eat two hours prior, was go out and shovel out my car.  I must say, someone was looking out for me when it drove right out of it’s spot, unlike the last time where I was stuck.  But stubborn brunettes don’t give up!   We had a shitload of snow fall yesterday.

What was challenging for me today was my head, where it goes.   I once heard from a psychiatrist that the more intelligent you are, the more remote places you can find to hide in.   Not saying I’m the smartest person in the world, not even close, but I have at times thought, if I wasn’t so smart, I would be happier.   Sit on that one for a moment!

I cannot share my thoughts here, I cannot share them with anyone.    I’m doing what I know to do, and that is to get moving, get busy, keep trucking.  It took me hours of stuck to get there.  I guess I should celebrate in getting there.

I’m heading to bed early tonight, taking a friend to a much needed doctor’s appointment up North.  I’m hoping the roads and snow removal are in good shape.  I get to drive the cutest car in the world because mine doesn’t have heat.   (Kia little boxy car, I just love it!) Ya just can’t expect an 81 year old to ride that far without heat!

I walked around my house today foreign to myself.   Not exactly foreign, but certainly not where I wanted to be.   I know depression and anxiety intimately.  But where it takes me, those are places that it’s hard to find comfort in.  I remember hearing at a recovery group a couple decades ago “Find comfort in the uncomfortable”.   One of life’s tricks to success, or certainly to get beyond, or overcome.

I did some sketches today on a piece I want to start soon.   But as I walked into my studio this evening, sat down to work on ears of the pet portrait I’m doing, I see many 85%-90% paintings started, but not completed.  That isn’t a sin, but it’s something I have to be vigilant of.  Signs?  Silliness?

Well, have things I have to do before bed.  I’m hoping I sleep.  Last night I did not.  Not well, anyway.

Hoping your having a great day, full of insight and direction!   It’s what I’m seeking at the moment.