A Little Bit Low

Tonight I’m feeling a little bit low. I know in the end, everything will be ok. Yet, at the moment, I’m sad. And angry. This time last year, mum was dying. My aunt and cousin had finally decided to come up and see her and were on the way. I had no idea how much sorrow for myself I’d have towards mom a year later. She has taken so much from me. It was my choice to let her, so I really shouldn’t be mad at her.

Today was rainy. The house is so chilly, but I choose to keep the heat down as much as possible cuz of cost. I have so much to do and will be gone in less than 20 days. I’ve only seen my sister twice, that I can recall, since the 30th of August. Once to pick up tables we’d used in the sale (I had cleared them off and folded them up) and once to hand over her half of the money we’d made. We were going to take mum’s ashes down to Homer sometime this week. Jake already told me that the 24th wouldn’t work, her family has things going on. She mentioned Sunday might be a good day (she calls once in a while or texts or sends me a comment on FB), but I’ve not had that verified. I scratched my eyeball when my alarm went off this morning and I reached over to turn it off (that REALLY hurts!). There was a slim chance I’d see a good friend today and didn’t (although, that isn’t something to be sad about. Good things are happening in that life and the roller coaster is on a smooth spot!). I want to take photos of mom’s ashes in the lake and it cleared up this afternoon and was lovely, but I’m alone and can’t spread and shoot at the same time (OK…that just sounds wrong!!!). I haven’t spoken to The Craftsman in a couple of days. He called tonight, just a little over 10 minutes. I got a few texts from the Jukebox guy, but not one concerning when he’d come down and get the boxes. Last Sunday (was it just a week ago???) I was hoping to attend a program and didn’t get there. I was invited to go to another presentation the last weekend I’m in AK. But, I’m afraid to. Because of mom.

You see, Mum was secretary of the local Historical Society for years and years. I’ve been trying to return things I’ve found relating to the society. I keep finding checks and letters and notes and documents and notebooks and all kinds of things. The last time I tried to take some back, I was told no. I threw the stuff away. I’m not even spending money to shred it anymore. Tonight, I found MORE documents and checks and an unopened Alaskan flag. (I have one, so I don’t need another) The presentation I’m invited to is for the local Historical Society. I’m so nervous they’ll realise who I am. Mum dropped the ball and this is one I cannot pick up for her very easily. If I go, I’ll sit as far away from the speakers as possible and ask the person who invited me to not introduce me. (I laughed when she sent an email invitation. She said, it would be fun and ‘your mom did so much for the Historical Society.’) Unfortunately, I look a great deal like her. (odd note: I had people ask if Jake and I were twins at the estate sale!!!!!!) They also have a potluck lunch that I will also avoid if I go.

I’m either waiting or busy doing stuff I don’t want to do or wanting to cry. And the tears are hurting the scratched eye!

Gracious! What a terribly whiny post! (Actually, I think I need one of those for my Oregon yard. A sturdy post with holes in it to hold empty wine bottles..that I’ll get from somewhere!) I’d better share something cheerful.

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This is hard

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I’ve written a million times about mum and her last months. This summer I’ve dragged myself through generations of debris and lives. I’m supposed to be getting my own finds ready for boxing up to someday mail, but I tripped. I landed hard. I have fallen and I can’t get up. So, I’m talking to the only people I know who are awake and for some reason, listen.

This evening I started to attempt to sort the paperwork I acquired while caring for mum. The sympathy cards. The hospital records.  The notes from her cancer counselor on August 8 of last year that said mom was chatting about the local senior housing and was in great spirits and apparently feeling well, but that she and her daughter didn’t see eye to eye.

I have been crying off and on the last hour. I don’t know what to throw away. Gods, it’s like I gave her my last few years and nothing matters. I have to keep moving forward and I am not going anywhere. Like a treadmill with a virtual map. In the end, I’m tired and sweaty and back where I started. I don’t want to be strong anymore. I want held and cuddled and reminded it will be ok. Thank god for WordPress and my teddy bear!

When I return to Oregon, it’s exactly like that treadmill. I’ll have been changed, yet when I step back onto the floor, no one around me will notice anything other than that mostly quiet person is around again. I’ll be expected to be who I was 3 years ago.

In 10 hours, I need to be that strong person. I had hoped to ship boxes and totes in a container. Now, I need to adjust to moving them all by post. So, not only do I need to tear off bandages, exposing wounds, I need to discard what I had hoped to keep for what I might actually need to keep. Which is not really anything, except mom’s things I can better sell from the lower 48.

But, it really hurts.

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Drink up.

I know it’s just feelings and feelings aren’t a true barometer of what is real, but I’m frustrated. Yes, I feel like crappachino and need to venti. Ouch, it seems to be a tall drink!

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One of my best friends in the world says I’m a bit of a drama queen. I’m sure he’s right. Another good friend has said I should not look at what I want and focus on what is done and be thankful. I look at little things and make them big. So, being about to cry is my own choice. Thankfully, my eyes are still watering profusely and that’s a good way to disguise minute moments of tears.

I haven’t chosen to let go of mom yet. It’s not that I’ve not had time, I’m constantly alone. I can do whatever I want when I am alone, besides the things I need to do! I’ve been told it’s been long enough and it’s not like anyone here really knew her. Even my family didn’t.

I got a call today for her. It appears one of mom’s doctors was owed money and they wanted to speak to her. I thought for sure I’d contacted them after mums death, I guess not. Anyway, they’d not sent a bill cuz it was under $10, but she was calling to tell mom about it. 🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔 I asked her to send it and I’d take care of it.

I had dinner ready at six pm, I almost always do. Little Bear called his dad on the phone to ask him to come home for dinner. I figured The Craftsman would arrive eventually. Then, after dinner, I mentioned I thought maybe my glucose had dropped. He agreed, saying he’d lived with me for 38 years and knew the signs. I’m sure he didn’t suggest fruit or something like that cuz we’d we had been eating dinner. So, I was acting “off” and they were just letting me. (He also didn’t count the last two years of our marriage cuz we’d not lived together for them..although, I did find out he counted me on taxes.) Often, at dinner, I can find something amusing. .its a game to discover fun in the one conversation I listen to each day and may even be a part of. Not tonight. (I was proud of myself. I didn’t apologize for dinner. It wasn’t exactly what I’d envisioned, but it wasn’t bad. I won’t make it again, though.)

After dinner, I was frustrated with how the dishes were being loaded. I do a majority of the chores and have figured out the most efficient ways to do them. I’ve probably got bubbles in my brain. The Craftsman didn’t see anything wrong. I let it go. It really isn’t important. Besides, I needed to get my glucose up.

I ate my low carb ice cream at the table, he had punkin pie in the living room. Now, I’m writing in the kitchen. He’s still in the living room.

This morning , I woke up alone, he’d awakened earlier and wanted more sleep, so he went elsewhere. I’ve received at least three nice hugs and a couple of kisses today. He called this afternoon from the store to verify what I needed and had forgotten while shopping on Friday. He was busy doing projects all day because it was fairly dry and sunny. We have spent a lot of time together this week, I shouldn’t want more. On Friday, I called to tell him I was in town. He was glad and we had lunch together in a local fast food spot. He did say it cost as much per person as the birthday one we had with the kid on Sunday.(It was my choice to feel guilty about that comment). We didn’t talk much, I tried and was silly. I brought up something controversial. Absolutely cutting any sort of communication off at the very beginning. It may have related to ‘Bohemian Rhapsody.’

I’ve not been happy since my return. Little Bear thinks I’m crazy to miss Alaska so much. Because Home should be with my family. A place isn’t as important as those who love me. I guess I need to grow up and know love is whatever I’m given. At least my last weeks in Alaska, I didn’t have to pretend very often.

Que, sera, sera.

Love, The Boston Fern, who really doesn’t like coffee..except when kissing!

 

 

 

Stories

There is a scene in one of my very favorite books, A Little Princess, where Sarah shares that everyone is a story. I’ve been thinking a great deal about this as I finish out mom’s physical story and watch how it continues to intersect my own. There is so much no one tells you about when a person dies. You don’t have time to grieve when you must address things like bills, Medicare, or simple things like laundry. (Bank of America is best reached via FB. Odd, but true. They are also the only credit card who wants an original death certificate…)

Mom’s been gone a bit longer than two weeks now. I lose track of tasks and end up doing something completely different from what I intended or I just find I’m gazing off into space, generally with tears dripping down my cheeks. (I’ve caught myself doing that while writing this!) Eating is tiring. I did make one meal, it was more work than I anticipated (thankfully, I did what Gaz suggests in his posts and washed as I used the dishes) and most of it is still in the fridge. I’m not really very hungry, which is ok since I’m so chubby and eating causes elimination, which is something else I hate dealing with. (Next summer I’m having an outhouse put in. I may not need it, but I probably will) There are people who volunteer help, most of those are kind gestures. Those people have their own stories and helping doesn’t necessarily mean getting involved in mine. I absolutely understand this. Mom left me one hell of a mess and I can totally get how people end up in a slough of despair when confronted with handling a death by themselves.

Having help, unfortunately means visitors and visitors mean conversation and a chipper Kris. I can do this most of the time. Last week there was a dinner for a family who is moving, they have been an incredible help to me. I drove to town to say goodbye, but I didn’t stay. Finances aside, I just couldn’t visit. (I probably looked like crap anyway!) I did go to my sister’s for dinner on Friday night. She sent me home with photos, a bit of meat, and some bread. I was able to add to the one’s from Jake’s a few more pictures I’ve found of mom. Plus, some scary ones of  the fashions way back when. (I loved that plastic-like jacket!)

I was also able to attend a bridal shower for another friend. It was such an out of the box experience for me. I laughed, won a game (see loot below!), and had a pleasant time being myself and not living in the shadow of mom. (I was also completely terrified when it was suggested a group photo should be taken on the deck. If you notice in the picture, the bride to be was holding me firmly and the lovely woman in front of me was an angel. I stared into her brown eyes as I gripped her hands and backed up against Celisa, scared to my toes we’d fall. I wasn’t impressed when a partier commented it was only 12 feet to the main ground.)

When I left, I had to be responsible again and do my laundry. (Jake had said I could do it at her house, but I forgot it.  TnT met me in town and donated a quarter, since I had 20 and not 21-it is a large washer.) I avoided church (besides, I desperately needed to wash my hair!), I’m having trouble sleeping, my mouth hurts where it was worked on last week, I ache all over, my feet are swelling when I stand or sit, I get light headed at odd times, my glucoses are not bad at all, Jake’s daughter will be here this next weekend (no one from my family will. The Craftsman did say they’d come up if I wanted them to. It doesn’t make sense, they’d only be here for Saturday and part of Sunday cuz they’d need to drive down from the city on Friday and be back there for a Monday flight. The expense would be ridiculous and I don’t have a working septic system) and that will be good for my sister, I lose my place in conversations and life (I was positive the friend who hosted the shower was moving and quitting her job and she’d given me her new address. I couldn’t find it this morning. I called the office where she works and it turns out, I’d DREAMED the whole conversation at the party, she’s not going anywhere!), but nothing matters. It really doesn’t. What is in today’s paragraphs only reach into tomorrow’s as building blocks for the future. I can’t see past the next day, anyway.

I am entirely grateful for the blogs I’ve been reading, those stories aren’t mine and are much more interesting. I’m sorry I’ve not responded, I want to and then I realise I don’t have the energy. I’m so thankful for the texts I have gotten from Podman, messages from GT (those have been beyond wonderful!), letters and a package from SE, and TnT stopped by briefly and helped me see how I could do something I’d been unsure of. People have been helping me organize mom’s service for Saturday, I don’t know how we managed to put together dad’s in so short a time! (If the weather doesn’t deteriorate, this service may become an event, she’d like that.) There is so much to not forget. I have notes on napkins, scraps of paper, and even in a notebook! I just need to remember to remain the rock and not hide in my blankets where no one can find me. (note: I would absolutely love to be taken care of and not need to be that strong, responsible person. Great, now I’m in tears for the 5th time while writing this!)

In just moments before posting, I have an update. The woman who is doing mom’s washing dropped by with clean things and took some more dirty stuff. She told me there had been a tribute for mom on the local radio station! I had no idea. People truly loved her a great deal. It is sad her daughters didn’t get to know her like others did.

 

Words of Me

Becky shared this word today. Atelophopbia which is a noun that means the fear of imperfection. This is my word. I am always afraid. I am constantly feeling inferior to almost everyone. I am not elegant and lovely and tall and buxom or smart and witty and clever and confident.  I am short and much more than chubby, moderately well-read, not much fun, and negative as a dead battery. (actually, dead batteries don’t have anything. So I’m more like one of those magnets that you try to affix to something and discover it can only work one way. Stupid things) I got an email from a friend back in Oregon. He’d seen my family blog and the photos below were in it. He said how one of them was uncomplimentary and I looked puffy and tired. Gee, I wonder which one? LOL  (Now, I feel even more shitty.)

 

Yeah, I do negative better on myself than when allowing others to do it for me. It is a type of rejection. Rejections is something I am totally familiar with, but not something I deal with well. I’m learning, though. I’ve become a much stronger person than I was a year ago this month. I’ve had to learn to do things by myself and I can. It may take a while, but I manage. In my marriage, I’m often put aside for other things. It is normal. I do it, too. I often make cookies and read at night when The Craftsman wants to watch TV. I’ll go for a walk when he’s just sat down instead of asking before he gets comfy in his chair. I’ll not hang out up at the shop while he’s working because I’d rather stay at the house. (I can read just as well up there) It is something the two of us do to each other. He tells me he gives me all the time he can, which makes sense. He is only at the house a couple of hours from 6-10 or 1030 pm, before he’s too tired for much more than tv and sleep. I need to make sure I fit in his schedule better.

I know I do some things well, not many, but a few. Unfortunately, the things I do well are unmarketable. I am an aging stay at home mom with a liberal arts college degree in silly courses, and a terrific volunteer who has nothing to go on with. The kids are grown, my spouse and I have nothing in common (or little), caregiving is my whole life, and I’m a doormat. I have to stay where I am, I have two very expensive diseases that I can’t live with ignoring. (literally! I had to fight to keep an appointment for myself. Mom is getting her dentures started at the end of March. Which means I can’t leave til those are done. If then.) I must learn to be content in following other lives or with stolen moments where I’m on the edges of those lives. Hoping I don’t fuck them up somehow, because I don’t belong. Kind of like those games on Sesame Street where one of these things is not like the other. I’m the cotton candy in the organic veggies aisle!!

As a Shadow Girl my life is behind others. I understand this, it has been that way my whole life. I take care of others to make them feel better. It is what I’m made of. I had to laugh. My sister called today and she told me I needed to take care of myself because, ‘She couldn’t do all this with mom by herself.’ (WTF??? We haven’t seen her since Christmas!! She works less than 10 miles from mom, she calls every so often and is constantly sick or busy with her family) The Craftsman tells me he’ll do things better when I return. Almost every night, very late, in his ‘I’m tired, I’m sorry I didn’t call, Goodnight, love.’ texts, he adds ‘I love you.’ I know he’s busy, but he is thinking of me. (Speaking of which, it is now 1230 am there and I’ve not heard from him yet. He’s probably doing something.)

I had to stop reading the Anne book about the librarian abducted by aliens, because it is a fairy tale sort of soft porn love story. I can’t see fairy tales (even if I did schedule part of one for Wednesday’s post!), I’m not that kind of material. I’m more PB and jelly on white bread than succulent finger snacks with wine.  So, I decided to read the YA book about horses for King Arthur instead. Love and support among animals is even nil in my world, but it is much easier to read. Thankfully, it will be March soon. Redwall books are on the agenda. (Strider and I got to meet Brian Jacques—pronounced Jakes and not like the name of the French guy on that really old TV show who made everyone realise there was an exciting world under the ocean!) He’s a good March read because there is always a harvest going on and cooking and baking and feasts and they are great fun!

Darkness lurks often. Especially after a really bad time with mom. We don’t love each other. It might be easier if we did. We tolerate each other. I provide a means to keeping her alive, in spite of the fact she’s doing as much of what she wants anyway. I’m useful. I also found out tonight that mom thinks my sister only wants her money. I told her she’ll get half of everything, as it is written in her will. She got really mad. It seems she loaned 10 grand to the kid for something and they’ve not paid it back. She’s given a lot of money to them for all kinds of things. She doesn’t think it is fair Jake should have it all and I get nothing. I honestly don’t care. I did want to be able to get a place up here with what might be left. However, there won’t be much and that makes me very happy. The less finances after a death, the less there is for people to fight over. I did tell mum if she didn’t like the will, she could change it. Nope, she’d rather bitch about the past.

I keep thinking how I’ll get everything taken care of after mom is gone and then vanish myself. I honestly don’t think many would notice. And I don’t care. I’m not really interested in anything anymore. Why should I be? It doesn’t matter. I used to think it did, but it doesn’t. It would be such a relief to not be afraid anymore. To not be in the way.  To not be in charge. To not be worried about being pretty or good enough. To not have to be a bother. To not need to make sure everyone else was ok. To not be a financial drain medically. (note: I’d have to make sure there was some sort of closure. Just to vanish is stupid. My ex brother in law did that and nothing can be done til a couple more years pass, I think. Although, if he showed up, I might just off him myself!!!) One of my friends said we need to go on an Inside Passage cruise (which I’ve always wanted to do) and be taken care of. I laughed. I’d probably not be allowed in the very front of the ship to watch the waves. Besides, I couldn’t afford to do it. I’d feel guilty every time I needed to tip someone because it wouldn’t be enough and I’d be sure to mess something up somewhere.

The circle of atelophopbia. I’m sure it will roll over soon. It generally does.

Kiss me a Hug

I’m sorry I’ve not written. I haven’t been able to muster up the energy to say anything. Not because there isn’t much to say, I’m just a tad numb. First about mum and then a bit from where I stand at the moment. I am beginning to hate this year, I’m still a lover of February and thank goodness we have more snow in the offing, but I hate this year. (Bad part about the new snow, I need to drive to the next city over to get a single item for mom care. I should have gotten it on TH when I was in town and the roads were good and I the next town was just a skip away.)

She’s doing absolutely perfect. Everyone is pleased with how well she came thru the surgery, how well she is recuperating, how healthy she is. It amazes people she’s had so many major cancers and has 4 small tumors growing inside of her. They love her attitude and fortitude and how nice she is about the trials she’s facing. (I’m the bitchy whining worn out one!) Our trip north was almost canceled because of fog, the pilot took two approaches before we managed to land. Got mom to the hospital and they prepped her. She was in love with the bizarre air blanket they put over her. Most of my time was spent alone and waiting. (Literally. As you can see from the photo, no one else was waiting for a patient in surgery!) I read and was pretty bored. (I was also amused by the mountain scape under the appointment window. It looks a great deal like a sleeping woman with erect nipples. Please, tell me you see it, too!) I didn’t manage to eat lunch or dinner that day, but I managed. One of my friends picked me up around 11pm, after mom flew thru the over 2 hour surgery. (recovery and what not was longer)

Her doctor was more concerned with the pain part and forgot she takes insulin. I gave her a shot before surgery and in recovery. Once she was in her room, the nurse said she’d have to do it. But, they didn’t have orders to do it, so they’d call in the morning to see if they’d be allowed to. They had to call the doctor twice. Once for each insulin. I arrived and we sprang her by 2. I was so tired, but she was her normal independent self. A friend took me out that night to see a play. (I love live theatre!!!) I think it was probably the 7th time I’ve been out in public with someone other than my mom since last Feb!!! (I’m a difficult person to take places. I tend to be a bit embarrassing and am on the lower edge of elegant. My friend is VERY elegant and incredibly confident. In high school, she was one of those pretty, smart girls who roamed the upper section of the cliques. I was in a lower middle clique). Some of those times include when I’ve met a friend briefly in places like fast food spots or the laundromat!!! At any rate, it was a splendid play and not quite like the movie. Little Shop of Horrors. I really do think my friend was amused with how much fun I had. There was someone behind us who was quietly singing with the cast and, during intermission, one of the people in front of us was heard to say ‘I didn’t realise this was so dark.’ And then, ‘I always get this mixed up with ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show. (I immediately wondered if Audrey 2 provided salad for the dinner scene, to go with the meatloaf……)

 

Got back to the hotel (we had been asked to change rooms for a maintenance thing. I was glad, the new room was a bazillion times warmer!) and talked to Strider for a bit. He was telling me about the movie, Black Panther. (I’m not even going to think about it!). We flew back home the next day. Mum sat with a friend, so I was able to get a window seat on the other side of the plane. I didn’t know what I was looking at, but I did enjoy myself. It is funny to see how straight the marks man make on the land are and how curvaceous the natural landmarks are.  I was incredibly harried, but I managed. We got home, eventually, and she was knackered. Not tired or worn out, knackered.

So, am I. I have been close to tears or in tears so much the last month. Since being back this week, I’ve slept and slept and read. I did see a doctor again (somehow, I am behind on payments and need to rectify that as soon as possible. I hate debts) and he upped my Toujeo from 28 to 30 units. I’m supposed to go back for a GYN thing next week. Had to cancel because of mom’s appointments. Haven’t heard from The Craftsman, except in texts since last Sunday. (I’ve called and talked to Little Bear, he also went to see Black Panther.) OK, that isn’t true. He sent me a Christmas package this week. As you can see from the photos, it was a bit amusing. Little Bear bought me the gift card, The Craftsman sent the silver dangly earrings (they were prettier after I dusted them off!!). In the box were also two boxes of my expensive test strips (I needed to use them before they expired. He had been picking up the spendy strips and saving them til I returned, I’ve been using the less expensive ones up here.), a Christmas card from friends in GA, two pieces of mail associated with mum (they were sent to Oregon because that is my mailing address on my ID), a devotional book given to women in the church, and all those lovely air filled packing pouches! I’m sure I’ll find something to do with them.

In this last month, I recalled this quote from one of my favorite books (both I’ve mentioned in here many times, it’s from Daddy Long Legs, by Jean Webster): “One doesn’t miss what one has never had; but it is awfully hard going without things after one has commenced thinking they are his….” I’d have to amend this quote to read ‘thinking they might be his!’ Human touch is so important to me. I often reach out and kiss people a hug because I need to touch. (I got an unsolicited one the other day from a receptionist! A hug, not a kiss.) Hearing a voice is powerful, conversation is beautiful. Feeling a two armed hug is beyond incredible. I’ve gotten some and I want more. Unfortunately, when a person is a super hero sort of Shadow Girl like I am, it is easy to be overlooked or hidden. I know where I am is not as bad as the places others are. I realise I chose this situation. I understand I have everything in the world I need. Returning to Oregon and the existence there actually seems rather nice after these ridiculous seasons. Cooking and making lunches and baking and cleaning house and reading favorite books with the cats and weeding and shopping once a week sounds like a lovely agenda. (Boring, but it is my house and my yard and I’m used to it!)

Kissing you a hug from Kris, Shadow Girl! (I need a costume with purple…….no capes!)

A long week

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If you have a painfully sore left shoulder, pain in your abdomen on the left side, a sore left jaw, are very tired, a bit light headed, and have trouble getting a solid breath, this might mean you have some form of indigestion. Which is a much happier diagnosis than anything else it might be.

After a terribly scary drive to the next town over (seriously, I started out in a snowstorm, ended up in snow, and then was in a city with the temp of 29 degrees and RAIN!), the NP saw me. The nurse and the receptionist both felt something might be off, but the NP asked some questions, looked me in the eye and said, “I’m not sure what I should be looking for, but why don’t you get up on the table.” She listened to my chest and probably my heart and pressed on my tummy and decided I had heartburn and if the pain didn’t subside, to come back. (kind of reminds me of when I lost all the vision in my right eye. It was seeing black and after test after test, there was no reason for it. The doctor told me that if it got worse to come back. I wondered if he wanted my eye to fall out! The vision eventually returned. A couple of years later, it was discovered I had MS and the loss of vision and some other things were probably clues that were missed.)

On the plus side, I’ve lost a couple of pounds (and since that is the only scale I’m ever weighed on, I’ll go with it!), even in winter wear!  (I reckon I’ll try to see my own doctors in the states, if I can manage to return.) I finished a book (see below), it snowed, mum has gotten lots of Christmas mail, and the neighbor will be here this evening to plow free of charge!

I’ll be here through the holidays. I don’t really care, they will be just another set of days in the week. I’ll go shopping on Friday and see if there is something I can do to make Christmas festive for mum. I’m really pretty tired and don’t want to do anything. She may or may not feel like church on Sunday, but her face is rather bruised from the tooth extraction. She’s graduated to eating almost everything. Her container of cheese balls is almost empty as is her container of animal crackers. (she sucks on them til they melt!) She’s made waffles and drinks her coffee with peppermint creamer. She’s complaining because her glucose has been running up to the 400’s for ‘no reason at all’.  (her lunch one just now was 502.) Taking her shopping is a bit hard on her bank balance. I am not sure if she’ll go with me on Friday or not. (she’s pretty sensitive about how she looks!)

There are a few options I can look at to manage to finance a leave, perhaps in January. I also need to set up and make sure someone is going to check on mom and take her out and about. The cat can’t go with me til the middle of January (there is an embargo or something like that on pets for that last bit of flying) and I’m pretty sure the flight I had originally chosen would not be good for a pet. I’d be in the airport in ANC for at least 6 hours and then the one in Seattle for another 8 or 9. (I’m not sure it would be good for me, the way I feel!) The particular flight is gone now at the price I was looking at, so I need to look for a different one.

Anyway, I’m super tired and just wanted to update you all before taking another nap or two. (Maybe third naps are in order!)

I did finish the last book I was reading (mum says she has the whole series—except this one—on the shelves in the basement and I should read them. I can’t get to her shelves and before I leave will have to rearrange her basement so she can manage to find her stuff easily again.). It the one by Jan Karon called ‘Home to Holly Springs.’ I’m very thankful those sorts of crazy experiences don’t happen in real life when a person returns home after a long while. It was a thought provoking read. It generated thoughts about home and what that might mean to different people. Probably a post for a different time!

OH! And it appears, for the moment, most of my email might be actually working. So very grand, I do love reading what you post during the day!

One of my good friends suggested I need a massage and some other things which are NSFW. I laughed. He may be right, but I’d probably fall to sleep during the massage and miss everything else!

Am I worthy?

Brave

“I am brave and worthy of love and belonging.” Brene Brown.

I keep saying this over and over and over. Especially tonight. I wrapped up the Hanukah gifts for my sister’s family (I reckon I need to add something to those from me) and was sad. I got a facebook message from a gal who lives in my Oregon town. They want to invite The Craftsman and Little Bear over for Christmas, she asked me to ask them. I responded to the spouse’s habitual good night text with the invitation. I am sad I won’t be there to cook and decorate and do all those things I do during the holidays (and all the other days of the year! Lol). There is a chance I may get to leave here for Christmas…we’ll have to see. They’ll be so glad to have mom back to take care of the normal stuff!

I did get another text today from The Craftsman. I sent one this morning and got one back! I know the beauty of texts is that the person can respond whenever they get around to it. I shouldn’t feel sad I’m needing to be gotten around to, I do get texts back eventually. The goodnight ones are always appreciated, even if they say the same things. (I know he is sorry he didn’t call and that it is late and he loves me) And, as I have mentioned before, earlier than May of this year, I didn’t even get those!

Mum is being frustrating as usual. Her glucose dropped to 190 at her bedtime test and she had an ensure cuz it was too low. I don’t even care. She was talking about the pastor’s friend and how his cancer numbers went up and that wasn’t good. I told her I thought those numbers were bogus. I said hers went up and down and rarely meant a thing. Then, mum retaliates with, ‘But I don’t have prostate cancer.’  (No, she has a pancreatic carcinoma and most people don’t live long once diagnosed.)

Whatever happens, happens. I’ll do errands on Thursday and then get the grand (JL) and go from there. She is having oral surgery on Friday. (I’ll keep  you posted as I can) We are supposed to get snow, hoping it is an accurate forecast.

For the last couple of years my motto has been, ‘Que Sera, Sera.’ The sentiment remains. I’m just going to have to add that “I am enough. I am brave and worthy of love and belonging.” (If I say it enough, maybe I’ll start to believe it…..)

Sad again

And now I’m sad again.

I had thought I might be able to see if mum could live alone next week and then I could return to Oregon at the start of December. I had a plan that I’d leave her car in the drive so she could have access to it, I’d hike or something into town, hang out for a day or two around the area, and then come back and see how she did. I do realise it is a tad chilly to be a homeless vagrant over many miles, but it would be an interesting experience. Anyway, it doesn’t matter now. Not really. The next two weeks are free from any sorts of appointments, but the week of Thanksgiving they start up again with a vengeance. From that week til Dec 8, she has things all around her that will need done. She could probably do most of them on her own, if she could drive. Except for the 8th, when she has the oral surgery. I’m not looking forward to that. She thinks it will be a piece of cake, she did ‘ok’ with the last one, so this is going to be similar. I am thinking the cake is going to be too rich for her system and it isn’t going to be pretty. But, I’m just a nervous Nellie and not really that important!

I’m sad cuz I looked at photos on fb of places where I normally live and the kids have all grown so tall and some of the ladies look more fragile. I’m sad cuz I’m out of touch with one of my best friends and one of my better friends has become closer to one who is truly a best friend and my spouse doesn’t see anything beyond me being at the house ‘where I belong’. I am feeling incredibly superfluous. (I’d say I was chopped liver, but even the cat has lifted her nose at me!) I am so very thankful I have people around my Korner who read and help me. If it wasn’t for you friends, I’d be a total watering pot! (I am anyway! I’ve ended up in tears several times today.)

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I shouldn’t be sad. Life is made up of shadows and lights. Just cuz there were shadows today, doesn’t mean there weren’t lights. I was leaving a store and a random person smiled at me. It truly brightened up my day. I’m sure he didn’t’ know how much he gave to me in that short grin, but it was such a blessing to get. It is those little things I need to grasp when I don’t think there is much else out there. And then, I need to pop in to WP and see the cheer from any number of good souls.

Just as I posted this, there was a horrendous crash from upstairs. Mum managed to fall amidst a ton of plants and lighthouse ornaments. If I had not been here……..If there wasn’t so much CLUTTER!

Oh, Bother Blue

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When my youngest was in HS we moved to the house we now live in. He wanted his bedroom blue and I was given the task to bring home color chips. I fell in love with one in the Disney section. The color was gorgeous and the name cracked me up. When I brought the chips home to the kid, he preferred the Disney color over the others. I managed to keep the name from him til the room was painted. It makes the mother heart in me smile to know the kid’s room is ‘Oh bother, blue.’  I wish I was there to see it again-although, he has covered the walls with Ford posters, skulls, antlers, and a variety of hunting paraphernalia and images.

Of all the things I do not like, I do not like to be a bother. I go out of my way to make sure the way is smooth for others, to make sure I am not causing a roadblock I may imagine. These last weeks, I feel as if I am a bother. I don’t want to ask anyone for anything. I feel like I’m in the way in many areas. I’m afraid to talk to people, I keep repeating myself and it is dull. I want to turn off my phone and avoid people. I see people and sometimes cringe. They need to hear how good mum is doing and I hate to put on that feels good hat.  I pour out whenever asked and forget to remember I’m also getting filled. I have gone from ‘Que Sera, Sera’ to ‘it doesn’t matter’. I laugh to myself as I whine about mum striving for normalcy because, I am doing the same. I do my damnedest to make positive her world is free of intrusive particles. Things I know she’d not take care of anyway, but need addressed. She doesn’t really notice much more than me ‘hovering’. She hates I change her fittings and give her shots. She hates I have to drive her places. She insists she wants to manage her own finances, later. We don’t love each other like storybooks and others say we should. We’ll drive for hours without speaking because I don’t enjoy my words being dismissed. It is the way it has always been and I don’t expect it to change.

It has probably been a bit obvious that the projections of my cheerfulness and seeking for good things is a bit forced lately. I know trying to do positive things for me or embracing enjoyment is important. No matter how small. But it is so hard sometimes. I know what I’m experiencing is light in a country full of hurricanes and fires and storm damages and political mayhem. It doesn’t matter how much I rationalize, I’m often sad. I imagine how I could end my existence and know it is entirely illogical to even imagine such actions. Thankfully, I am logical and suicide has never been a viable option. Responsible people keep moving on in spite of a veil of depression. Of all the points of depression, that one is not one to worry about.

Yes, I admit it. I am depressed. I’ve been in the ‘oh bother, blue’ zone for quite a while, am moving into the darker hues. I’m now on the edge of navy. Not quite there, but near. I find myself close to or bursting into tears at the drop of a thought. (I should stop thinking!) I’ve got two very good books I need to finish and I don’t want to. I took a shower and didn’t care what the water in the laundry room did (It only came up a couple of inches and didn’t flood. It wouldn’t have mattered). Mum doesn’t seem to think there is ever a need for a person to feel depression. She’s always fine. I’m not. I sit at the laptop or with my notebook and write and then decide I need to sleep. I almost always remember birthdays or to send notes and treats to people on holidays. I’ve been horrid about that lately. I have friends who are barely making ends meet and torn to bits because of relationships, ones who have family members who are incredibly sick, others who are lost because of the death of a loved one, and this spot I’m in is pretty good.

My mum is alive. She is well loved by many. Mum sounds and acts quite well. She is able to convince people of her good health. Her stats are good, her tumor marker has dropped again, and I am a small albatross. As for me, I can do almost anything without any help at all, I am fairly healthy, and I have a couple of very good friends who keep an eye on me outside of the internet. I have two boys who communicate with me every so often. I exchange texts with my spouse almost every day and sometimes even phone calls now and then.  I have a place to sleep, clothes and food and insulin and test strips. Yes, things really are pretty good.

And yet, I want to curl up and cry. Tears are such a silly indulgence. I’ve never been a crier and this is ridiculous! I’m a cynical, selfish woman with a not so high self-esteem, who needs to remember that others come before self. I can continue to go through the motions and eventually those motions will be the pattern again.

(a couple of years ago, I went through a bit of depression and was given horrible drugs. I don’t take those. They were nasty bad things. I have not been at this point in quite a while. It will pass, I know it will.)