Category Archives: life

A Brief Break Before All Hell Breaks Loose

Even though I can no longer work I am going on a little vacation. Yay!

A couple of dear friends that I have known for 39 years have invited me to their home in the hills of North Carolina. 

No internet, no cell service, just the woods and good friends.

Although it will only be for a few days I plan on recharging my batteries fully.

I got a notice of eviction today and have 14 days to replace the carpet in my apartment or I am out of here. Funny how the manager didn’t serve me with it until she knew that I had plans to be out of town for two weeks. She has changed her tune quite a few times. Even my psychologist and case worker were taken aback by the new developments. So, my plans have changed a bit and I will be back sooner than I had planned.

Hopefully a dear friend can help me with the costs. If not, well, I don’t know what. That bridge will have to be crossed when and if I come to it. I can’t reach him until tonight, so I just have to be more nervous until then.

Right this minute I am frozen with anxiety. I still have things to do to be ready to leave tomorrow morning, so I am trying to get up and get moving. I am trying to breathe. I am playing the movie “Hot Fuzz” off of my dvr. 

Sometimes I feel like, “What more does the world want from me? Why is this happening to me?” I am kind, I help people and animals whenever possible. I don’t cause trouble. I pay my rent on time every month. Because my poor old dog left some stains on this old, worn out, indoor-outdoor carpet I may be kicked out.

But – crying woe is me won’t solve or help anything. 

I will go visit my friends, who I haven’t seen in over ten years, and allow myself to be loved and have real conversations and drink in the mountain air. 

And when I get back I will deal with the situation and with that mean-spirited bully of a manager. That is what she is, pure and simple, a bully. As soon as I told her that I needed my case worker to be with me when she was telling me these things she slammed the phone down and decided to just evict me. Also, to bully a person with a severe mental illness takes a certain kind of shit for a soul.

I am taking pen and paper with me to note specifics during my time in the mountains to share them with you on my return.

Please wish me luck.


It’s World Poetry Day!

In 1999 the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) declared that March 21st would be World Poetry Day.

Before that it was celebrated in October to mark the birth date of Virgil, the Roman poet, and there are still national and international poetry days held then.

To celebrate I would like to share one of my poems with you. I wrote this for my grandson Connor.

Bedtime For Connor

Read me a story

He said with a smile.

I’m not sleepy yet.

It will take just a while.

I’ll read you a story.

We’ll cuddle and hug.

Then you’ll go to sleep 

When I tuck you in snug.

Read me two stories

He said with a grin.

I’ll be sleepy for sure and 

I’ll go to bed then.

I’ll read you two stories.

I’ll lie here with you.

You’ll be very sleepy

When I read you two.

Read me three stories

He said – about space!

I might be sleepy 

After a moon race.

I’ll read you three stories.

We’ll fly to the moon.

But we can’t stay long.

You’ll be asleep soon.

Read me four stories.

He said with a yawn.

I’m sure I’ll be sleepy.

The sun is all gone.

I’ll read you four stories.

But that will be all.

I have housework to do

And people to call.

Read me five stories.

He said in his sleep.

Then while you do your housework

I won’t make a peep.

I’ll read you five stories

My precious, my sweet.

The people can wait and

The laundry will keep.

I hope you like it. Thank you for reading.

Please feel free to share your favorite poem in the comments. I look forward to hearing from you.

On Love And Panic Attacks

Today is day three of the Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey 21 Day meditation experience. But since I didn’t open the laptop yesterday I did the day two meditation first.

It is “Success Increases Love”. The centering thought is “I am here to bring more love into the world.”

It really was a lovely guided meditation but, and it’s a big but, it was hard to do while on the verge of a panic attack.

For the last two nights I have not been able to sleep very well at all. I am waking up every hour or so and then my cat has taken to waking me around five A.M. to get me to give her some canned food.

This morning I thought that I would just fix me some coffee and stay awake like I did two days ago. Monday was a good day.

Nope. No such luck. As I drank my second cup of coffee I felt the anxious beginnings of a panic attack. So I stopped the coffee and thought that doing the meditation would help. It ended up being too distracting to fight.

I really do like the idea, though, that I am here to bring more love into the world. I love people and creatures and places and things. And I try to share that love in my writing and in my actions every day.

Then, on Facebook, I saw a nice article in Psychology Today about what love is. It discusses whether love is an emotion or an feeling or a drive.

My belief is that love can be all three of those things.

While writing this my dear friend Mark, whom I love, called to chat. Talking to him really helped disperse the panicky feelings.

So perhaps the meditation did work in a way. While concentrating on me bringing more love into the world, I received a bit and it helped me.

Has this happened to you? When you are having a panic attack have you received help in a serendipitous way?

Happy Monday And Meditation

Even though today is Monday, I am having a pretty good day.

On Friday I got a call from the apartment manager who told me that I don’t have to worry about changing my carpet until after April first. So the heat is off about that, at least for a couple of weeks.

Last week I finally got to go and get my little dog’s ashes from the vet’s office, so he is home again, in a way. Just having the dark wooden box sitting on my shelf makes me feel better. Makes me feel that he is close to me.

This morning I started an awesome 21 day meditation experience with Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey. I don’t meditate often but this will give me an opportunity to have a guided meditation every morning. Today I felt more relaxed and confident after doing it. And my coffee has awakened me without the anxiety that most often comes with drinking it. The experience is free and I recommend doing it as an introduction to meditation or as a fun thing to do if you currently meditate.

The meditation got me interested in the greeting/farewell of Namaste. You can learn more about it here. I like the fact that it is acknowledging that in each of us there is the spiritually divine.

I have noticed that some Facebook friends end their posts and comments with “Peace and Love. Namaste.” Who can argue that peace and love is not a concept to strive for? Just the thought is calming.

I hope your Monday is going as well as mine. I can only hope to continue feeling good. Usually I am waiting for the other shoe to drop. Sometimes it does, but for today I am just trying not to think about it.

Do you practice meditation? Has it helped you deal with your anxiety or depression?


The Circle Tightens

For twenty-two years my father had a wonderful girlfriend. Her name is Brynn.

She got the nickname Brynnie from my boys when they were toddlers.

She was an RN and worked both in a hospital and in a private practice.

When I cut myself on an old tin can she brought home a tetanus shot. This was years ago and the syringe was in a metal case. She gave me the shot in my left arm and said it wouldn’t hurt now. After she gave me the shot she said that it WILL hurt now.

She was a tall, graceful woman. Shopping for a sleep shirt for her one Christmas my oldest boy, about six at the time, told the salesperson helping us that, “Brynnie is a BIG woman.”

She was as kind a person as you could ever meet. She was generous. She loved animals.

She had Huntington’s Disease. It ended up making her quit working, as the spastic movements of her arms and legs made it difficult to do her job.

And then, one Sunday night, she fell out of bed. She couldn’t move her head so an ambulance was called to take her to the hospital.

Her regular neurosurgeon was on vacation. The neurosurgeon on call was incompetent. You could see her spine making a large lump on the left side of her neck. She lay in the hospital bed, screaming in pain each time she was moved, for a week. The doctor told us every day that nothing was wrong.

Her neurosurgeon came back on Friday, walked into her hospital room and said, “Oh my God, her neck is broken!” By then her arms and legs were paralyzed.

She underwent surgery to fix her broken neck and she regained some movement in her arms.

Yes, lawsuits were filed. And won.

When she was able to be kept at home my sister and I helped Dad take care of her. I would come every night after work and on the weekends while my sister took the weekdays.

She loved apples but they became a choking hazard as she could not chew well. I cooked them with some butter and brown sugar so they were caramelized and tender for her.

The other day I was trying to enjoy some apples myself but was finding it hard to chew them. I have dentures. A Facebook post reminded me of cooking them as I had for our Brynnie.

So I cooked them and enjoyed them and felt like crying. I was remembering Brynnie and thinking of my own spot in my life.

The circle tightens. That circle of life we all go through. The feeling that you are nearer the end than the beginning.

I try to find the good in all things so I will believe that my recent thoughts of Brynnie are a good thing. She was such a wonderful person who approached everything she was dealt with grace and bravery. If I could strive to be like her in all things then I would be happy knowing that the influence she had on me was a great one. Her memory lives on, I should do things that ensure that mine will do the same.

We love you, Brynnie.