Medical Emergencies and Multiple Hospitals

*apologies, this was written Thursday Morning but I’m just getting around to posting it. I will update more later*

Here I am again dear readers. Unfortunately, events like this seem to be the only time I’m able to find enough free time to write. I’m sitting here in the floor, back against the wall, in a hospital room listening to my father and my boyfriend snore.

Life is a complicated animal. Much has happened, as is the case for everyone. But over the last few weeks, it’s been crazy. My grandmother went in the hospital for not being able to breathe. It went from her having a goiter on her windpipe and artery to her also having a very aggressive form of thyroid cancer. While trying to get everything scheduled for her to start radiation at Emory, my mom has also been trying to take care of my father.

Renal failure, diabetes, eye issues, neuropathy (to the point of not being able to feel in his hands and feet), and balance issues are just a few of the lovely things my father faces every day. It’s a constant battle. But, it gets better. Yesterday morning while my mom was getting ready to take my father to dialysis, he fell and broke his ankle. Pretty severely. It was also my mom’s birthday. And her mother was in the hospital due to severe fluid retention that turned out to be a blood clot in her leg.

Today, they managed to get my grandmother released from our local hospital but only to take her to Emory in Atlanta to begin her first day of radiation treatment. My dad is supposed to have surgery on his ankle today. My poor mom can’t be in both places. So I took the day off work to come watch over my dad.

It’s so hard to see him like this. Restless, in pain, and a shadow of his formal self. But this is life. It happens to all of us who are here long enough. And I know he hates for me to see him like this. But I guess we all come to a point where we have to bite our pride and accept the help of those who love us, regardless of the situation. So, while my mom drives to Atl with her sister-in-law and my grandmother, I am sitting here doing research for the coming days after surgery.

Planning to add a ramp to the stairs at my parents’ house. Looking up trailer hitch receivers and cargo trays for my mom’s car to carry a wheel chair for my dad and/or my grandmother. Planning food prep menus to help my parents when they’re exhausted but still need to follow dad’s dietary restrictions.

So many things to do. So little time. The curse of my life.

In these situations, with a loved one who’s health is chronically failing, it’s difficult to explain. People always ask me how he’s doing. It’s hard to say, isn’t it? It’s not like chemo, there is no fight and then remission. The only thing that helps renal failure is a transplant. And what can you tell someone then? He’s hanging in there waiting for  someone with a good kidney and pancreas to pass so he can have them? That, by the way, is not something people want to hear. It’s the truth, but people do not want the truth. Not the whole, unaltered truth that makes them uncomfortable. So I tell people the truest thing I can. He’s still here.

And for now, that’s all that matters.


 

” ‘ Some people don’t understand the promises they’re making when they make them.’ I said. ‘Right, of course. But you keep the promise anyway. That’s what love is. Love is keeping the promise anyway.’ ” – John Green, The Fault In Our Stars

“He admired my melancholy madness and said that it was graceful and beautiful. But it was neither of those things. I was a hurricane at the centre of a collapsing, burning, building; and I wasn’t someone to be admired at all.”

“Even if you know what’s coming, you ‘re never prepared for how it feels.” – Natalie Standiford

“You wake up every night to fight the same demons that left you so tired the night before, and that, my love, is bravery.” – unknown

“Well it breaks my heart to see you this way, The beauty in life where’s it gone? And somebody told me you were doing ok, somehow I guess they were wrong.” Flogging Molly “Whistles the wind”

“Don’t ever think you’re alone here, We’ve just been trapped in different hells, and people aren’t against you dear, they’re just all for themselves.” – e.h.

“May we exist like the lotus, at ease in muddy water.” – Zen proverb

“Keep your chin up little stargazer, At worlds above your own, You are small but you are stardust, And that’s worth more than you’ve known, For every sun and solar flare, Is made up just like you, And if they’re cause for wonder Then I promise you are too. Look out little stargazer ‘Til nothing’s left unseen, And know there’s not a patch of sky Where no one else’s eyes have been, That the darkness that enfolds you Holds countless other starlit hearts, And with this you stand together Though you live lifetimes apart. Be brave now little stargazer The sky is growing light, And courage wanes like moonbeams When it’s pulled out from the night, But like those who gazed before you; Know when your heart is full of fear, That it is always in your darkness That the stars start to appear.” -e.h.

“we mature with the damage, not with the years.” – Mateus William

“Enjoy every sandwich” – Warren Zevon

“I abide my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly. I perceived that this is also a chasing at the wind. For in much wisdom is much grief. And he that increaseth knowledge, increaseth sorrow.” – Assassin’s Creed

“Empedocles claims that, in utero, our backbone is one long solid; and that through the constriction of the womb and the punishment of birth, it must be snapped again and again and again to form our verterbrae; that for the child to have a spine, it’s back must first be broken.” – The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing: Traitor to the Nation M.T. Anderson

“She looks back out the window and as the light slides along her profile, I think I see sadness. And I wonder if she’s sad that I’m so weak and so afraid when she’s always been so strong.” – The Forest of Hands and Teeth

“If I leave you it doesn’t mean I love you any less.” – Warren Zevon “Keep me in your heart.”

“Promise me you will not spend so much time treading water and trying to keep your head above the waves that you forget, truly forget, how much you have always loved to swim.” – Tyler Knott Gregson

“Take the night and darken everything around me, Call the clouds, and listen closely, I’m lost without you. Call your name everyday, when I feel so helpless, I’m fallen down but I’ll rise above this.” – Seether “Rise above this”

“We live in grim times indeed if even children are too world weary to believe in magic.” – Fable

“Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny.” – C.S. Lewis

“She’s all laid up in bed with a broken heart, while I’m drinking Jack all alone in a local bar. And we don’t know how, how we got into this mad situation, only doing things out of frustration, trying to make it work but man these times are hard.” – The Script “For the First Time”

“Mama whispered softly, time will ease your pain. Life’s about changing, nothing ever stays the same.” – Patty Loveless

“Life asked Death, ‘Why do people love me but hate you?’ Death responded, ‘ Because you are a beautiful lie, and I am a painful truth.’ ”

“But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines, it will shine out all the clearer.” – Samwise Gamgee “LOTR: The Two Towers” – J.R.R. Tolkien

“These are hard times. The world hurts. We live in fear and forget to walk with hope. But hope has not forgotten you. So ask it to dinner. It’s probably hungry and would appreciate the invitation.” – Libba Bray “Going Bovine”

“It’s not hard to do. It’s just not easy yet.” – Monte  Selby

“Life is a grindstone, and whether it grinds a man down or polishes him up depends on the stuff he’s made of.” – J. Billings

” ‘Sometimes,’ he said while gripping the fabric of his own pant leg, “You run out of tears long before you run out of hurt.’ ” – Tyler Knott Gregson

“Listen to the musn’ts child, listen to the don’ts , listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me – anything can happen child, anything can be.” – Shel Silverstein

“I clutch my pillow to my chest and bury my face in it. I don’t cry. I just ache. Grief is not as heavy as guilt, but it takes more away from you.” – “Allegiant” Veronica Roth

“Needles and pins, needles and pins, sew me a sail, to catch me the wind. Sew me a sail, strong as a gale, carpenter bring out your, hammers and nails. Hammers and nails, hammers and nails, build me a boat, to go chasing the whales. Chasing the whales, sailing the blue, find me a captain, and sign me a crew. Captain and crew, captain and crew, take me oh take me, to anywhere new.” – Shel Silverstein

“She taught me all about real sacrifice. That it should be done from love… That it should be done from necessity, not without exhausting all other options. That it should be done for people who need your strength because they don’t have enough of their own.” – Veronica Roth Insurgent

“A nurse guy came in and told me I had to leave, that visitors weren’t allowed, and I asked if she was doing okay, and the guy said, “She’s still taking on water.” A desert blessing, an ocean curse. ” – John Green The Fault In Our Stars

“We all carry things inside us that no one else can see. They weigh us down like anchors, they drown us out at sea.” – Chelsea Smile Bring me the Horizion

 

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Welcome to the Machine

Hello everyone. Welcome back. I apologize for my last couple posts being about how long I’ve been gone and hollow promises of getting back to this blog. Life has threw a couple wrenches in my gears lately, but I’ve been working hard to get all those cogs freed up and running smoothly. I could tell you all the sad, frustrating, hair pulling, banging my head against the wall stories that have kept me away from this blog and many things in general, and I might, but not today.

I know, as well as anyone, that life can get in the way. It’s a machine. It keeps chugging along, regardless of the parts falling off, needing greased, or repaired. It is a machine to be admired for its unwillingness to quit, regardless of how it falls apart. People are much the same. That is how I have felt lately, like a machine in need of a serious breakdown and rebuild. But I don’t have time for that, so I make small repairs where I can – on the side of the road, in the rain, in the gas station parking lot – because on this journey, you don’t always have time to stop. You have to evaluate the priority parts and make sure you keep those on par, everything else? Well, it just depends on where it is on the priority list.

Sometimes we think certain parts of the machine are important when they really aren’t. That is a problem. It leaves us blindsided when a part that is actually important blows up. This has happened to me a few times lately. So, I am trying to shave off some unnecessary parts and focus on the core of the machine. Because unfortunately, when some of those really important parts blow up, there’s no fixing them or replacing them. You  must simply move on without them and readjust the way the machine works.

In my re-evaluation, I have decided that I have neglected some major components of my machine called life for far too long. And I have lost some parts that cannot be replaced. So, I am changing the oil, lubing the chain, changing the air filter, and moving on.

When is the last time you re-evaluated your life? There is never a bad time to sit down and make a list of the people or things that you love but haven’t seen or done in a while. Our excuse is usually that there isn’t enough time right now, I’ll do it later. I promise you that the most important thing you can do is make time. Right now, before your machine blows, locks up, and leaves you stranded with a part that you’ve lost and cant’ replace. As a quote by Buddha says, “The problem is, you think you’ve got time.”

As my favorite band, Pink Floyd, says, “Welcome to the machine.” Be sure to take care of yours every once in a while.


 

“Be decisive. Right or wrong, make a decision. The road of life is paved with flat squirrels that couldn’t make a decision.” – Anonymous

“We travel because we need to, because distance and difference are the secret tonic to creativity. When we get home, home is still the same, but something in our mind has changed, and that changes everything.” – Anonymous

“There is a kind of crying I hope you have not experienced, and it is not just crying about something terrible that has happened, but crying for all of the terrible things that have happened, not just to you but to everyone you know and to everyone you don’t know and even the people you don’t want to know. A crying that can not be diluted by a brave deed or a kind word, but only by someone holding you as your shoulders shake and your tears run down your face.” – Lemony Snicket

“Until we are ready, we’ll be waiting for the rest of our lives.” – Lemony Snicket

“February is the shortest month of the year, so if you are having a miserable month, try to schedule it for February.” – Anonymous

“It is a curious thing, the death of a loved one. We all know that our time in this world is limited, and that eventually all of us will end up underneath some sheet, never to wake up. And yet it is always a surprise when it happens to someone we know. It is like walking up the stairs to your bedroom in the dark, and thinking there is one more stair than there is. Your foot falls down, through the air, and there is a sickly moment of dark surprise as you try and readjust the way you thought of things.” – Lemony Snicket

“There’s a history of heartbreak, Tucked in the creases of her eyes, A museum of the moments, That she’d watch just pass her by, And each tear that escaped her, Held the things she’d left unsaid, So the words she’d never spoken, Stained her dampened cheeks instead.” – e.h.

“I think there are two kinds of forgiveness, the kind that when you forgive you’re also giving then another chance, or the kind where you forgive, but move on without them. Use them both wisely.” – s.b.

“You told me that you had my back, And I thought that it was true, Now my shadow’s still behind me, But where on earth are you?” – e.h.

” ‘Love me slowly,’ she whispered, like the love I had for her, had limits. Like it could run out as easily as a grain of time. I could tell, by the sound of fear in her lungs, that she had a terrible past. The kind that no one talks about, the kind that remains bottled up inside of you, slowly and quietly, killing everything in your bones.” – Christopher Poindexter

“There is no statute of limitations on starting over. Re-invent yourself every day. Be the girl who walks barefoot and listens to the blues. Tomorrow, wear a trench coat and speak fierce truths. Be a phoenix. Be ashes. Burn down. Resurrect. Let go of the idea that you must always be who you have always been.” – unknown

“If we were meant to stay in one place, we’d have roots instead of feet.” he said. – Rachel Wolchin

“Le beau est toujours bizarre. (The beautiful is always bizzar.)” – Charles Baudelaire

“She wears strength and darkness equally well, the girl has always been half goddess, half hell.” – unknown

Love is Unconditional, Relationships Are Not.

Life is a funny thing sometimes. It always has a way to bring us back around to a lesson that we learned before and may have, somehow, still forgotten. When I was little, I heard somewhere (either from my parents or read in a book)  that you’re better off to learn lessons from other people because you don’t live long enough to make them all yourself. I took that to heart, but there are still lessons that I have to learn for myself, the hard way.

I’ll be turning twenty five soon. An “official” quarter lifer at that point. I think it is a testament to the stresses of my generation that I had never heard that term used before we came into adult-hood. Some of us have been forced to grow up fast, due to circumstances beyond our control. It’s a testament to the lessons we’ve learned the hard way and the stress that we are under to be adults who are respected instead of looked down upon as “entitled”. It’s a testament to knowing how many of my peers are on anti-depressants and in therapy (neither of which they can afford, so it just gets stacked upon the thousands of dollars of student debt they have). It’s bad when there’s now a name for it because we are having “quarter-life” crises instead of mid-life.

One lesson that has been the hardest learned for me, and that has recently come back to remind me just how I learned it, is that while love is unconditional, relationships are not. This requires a little bit of back story, so bear with me.

My last relationship (as you’ve heard me mention over the last couple personal posts) was very abusive. He was a compulsive liar and very good at gaslighting. I was young and naive, and he wasn’t (naive, that is, he’s younger than I am). He knew exactly how to manipulate me to get what he wanted. This lasted for three years. Three years. The result was that during this, my already low self esteem dropped lower, I became even more withdrawn and anti-social, and I was more lost than ever. I was a teen. My parents were going through a rough time. It was, I thought, the love of my life.

I had only had one other guy before this ever tell me that I was beautiful and that he was in love with me, but that relationship wasn’t meant to be. We never even dated. So, when this guy came along, I took a chance. In some ways, I regret it deeply. I lost a lot of friends and missed out on a lot of experiences (including enjoying experiences like prom and graduation) because of this guy. At first it was great, but then every thing changed and I found myself in a situation that I knew in the back of my mind, was not safe and was not healthy. However, like a lot of people who find themselves in abusive relationships, I loved him hopelessly. As much as any 15-18 year old can know love. I was convinced that I could change myself to be that person he loved again. I was convinced I could change him to not be so quick to anger.

I convinced myself of a lot of things that still make me cringe and turn red with embarrassment. Please believe me that hind sight is 20/20, a lesson taught to me by one of my favorite history teachers. It was his response as to why people see things more clearly or differently after the fact than in the heat of the moment. Somewhere, another quote came to me when I needed it the most. It took a lot of time for it to sink in, and a lot of courage for me to finally cut him out of my life. I had tried before, just to go to being friends with him. This was a false hope. The only way to break that cycle is complete cut-off. The reason I can’t remember where this quote comes from is that I have literally dozens of notebooks, scraps of paper, journals, and files on my computer filled with quotes gathered over the past ten years of my life.

That quote was this: Love is unconditional, relationships are not. It rattled around in my head for a long time as I wrestled with exactly what it meant to me. And what I took from it was this: Yes, love is in fact unconditional. We don’t get to decide when it happens, where it comes from, who it applies to, nor how deeply it runs. It is something that exists beyond us, on another plane. Relationships are not unconditional. Ask anyone who’s ever been in one that has ended, from lovers to friends. They will all give you a reason. And most of the time will tell you that they are still in love or still love that person. Sometimes there are just parts of a relationship that we cannot handle. While this does not mean that we no longer love the person, it just means that we now realize it is not healthy for us to be a part of their life anymore.

From dirty socks and differences in politics, to lying and unfaithfulness, there are many conditions that define what you expect in a relationship. We all think that a failed relationship equals no longer loving that person but that is not the case. I think that line of thinking is what makes relationships, especially long ones, hard to walk away from. But it’s not love that has failed. There are some things that even love cannot change or conquer. You can love someone and realize that you can no longer live with them. You have to choose to let them go and love them from afar. And it hurts. Damn does it hurt. Usually. It hurt me to realize this, but the more he hurt me, the easier it made it. That breaking point is in different places for different people. I was lucky to realize mine before I fully committed my life to his.

Now, it has been nearly 7 years since we split. I do not talk to him, I have only seen him once (in a failed attempt to get my things back). I do not friend or follow him on facebook or any social media. His number is blocked from my phone and, to be honest, I no longer remember it though I once knew it like I knew my name. Now, I am seeing a pattern of a toxic relationship develop with someone close to me who I thought new this lesson. Unfortunately, they’ve been blinded to it by the beauty of the “honeymoon phase”. It frightens and angers me for this person because they’ve been through this before and deserve so much better. But that only served to remind me of another lesson. One that is just as hard for me to accept and follow.

I’m a nurturer. The Mother Goose. I want what’s best for the people I love and it’s hard for me to accept that sometimes I have to step back and let them make their own decisions and deal with the consequences that follow. My boyfriend actually reminded me of this one, which was slightly humbling because I’m the one who taught it to him. There comes a time when you are really going to hate a decision someone close to you makes. You’re going to think that you know that this decision is only going to get them hurt. But it is not our place to make decisions for others, it it only our job to love them. Sometimes you get presented with the ultimatum of accepting their decision and loving them, or losing them from your life. I learned a long time ago you can’t save someone who doesn’t want to be, or think that they need to be, saved. You’ve got to let people go their own way and just be there for them.

Simply another reminder that love is unconditional but relationships are not. Relationships are full of not only conditions but compromise. You have to decide, in every relationship, what compromises you are willing to make and what conditions are hard lines. This is always complicated by love. It’s pretty good at blurring those lines. There is always going to be someone that comes along that you love so much you turn into a pirate, going, “Rules? I thought those were more guidelines…”. There’s always going to be an exception to your rules for some people. Trust me, I’ve met one that just broke every rule I’ve ever had about a person and I fell in love with him anyways. I was willing to throw everything away for him, and he knew it. I am lucky enough that he loved me enough to not let me do that.

So,thanks for hanging in there with me and letting me ramble on. I’m not really sure where I hoped this would go when I started, but I’m ok with how it turned out. And, dear readers, with all your loved ones, just remember that love comes in many shapes and forms, and just because you might not have a great relationship with someone doesn’t mean you can’t love them.


“Remember that sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck”

“Your heart is surrounded by cobwebs and dust, it hasn’t seen the light of love in years. your skin is painted with blue and green circles, and red lines going in all directions. this is the aftermath of strangers,  of friends, of family, who are tyring to claw their way into your cobwebbed heart. they tried knocking first but you slammed the door in their faces, as if they were a door-to-door salesman. it’s time. time to let them in, time to clear away the cobwebs and the dust. time to let the light in.” – a.y.

“you can always find something beautiful in something destructive and now I finally understand why I’ve always been so fond of you.”

” ‘The trick, kiddo,’ his mom replies slowly, ‘is finding someone who complements you instead of completes you. You need to be complete on your own.’ ”

“Darlin, forever is a long, long time, and time has a way of changing things.” – Big Mama The Fox & The Hound

” ‘You,’ he said, ‘are a terribly real thing in a terribly false world, and that, I believe, is why you are in so much pain.’ ” – Emilie Autumn, The Asylum for Wayward Victorian Girls

“I would have loved you with everything I have. But you didn’t want to be loved, turns out you just wanted to be fucked.”

“People have a habit of inventing fictions they will believe wholeheartedly in order to ignore the truth they cannot accept.” Libba Bray The Sweet Far Thing

“You can never really know someone completely. That’s why it’s the most terrifying thing in the world, really—taking someone on faith, hoping they’ll take you on faith too. It’s such a precarious balance, It’s a wonder we do it at all. And yet..” – Libba Bray

“I love you for who you are, not who the world thinks you should be.” – Libba Bray  Beauty Queens

“He admired my melancholy madness and said that it was graceful and beautiful. But it was neither of those things. I was a hurricane at the centre of a collapsing, burning, building; and I wasn’t someone to be admired at all.

“If there’s a thing I’ve learned in my life it’s to not be afraid of the responsibility that comes with caring for other people. What we do for love: those things endure. Even if the people you do them for don’t.”“I used to think that when people fell in love, they just landed where they landed, and they had no choice in the matter afterward. And maybe that’s true of beginnings, but it’s not true of this, now. I fell in love with him. But I don’t stay with him by default as if there’s no one else available to me. I stay with him because I choose to, every day that I wake up, every day we fight or lie to each other or disappoint each other. I choose him over and over again, and he chooses me.” – Allegiant

“I know that I am birdlike, made narrow and small as if for taking flight, built straight-waisted and fragile. But when he touches me like he can’t bear to take his hand away, I don’t wish I was any different.” – Insurgent

“The worst thing is watching someone drown and not being able to convince them that they can save themselves just by standing up.”

The Reality of Relationships

Hello again, dear readers. I apologize for being absent for a bit and not updating like I should. I know we’re right in the swing of Spring/Summer and people are getting the travel bug, even if it’s just for a weekend. I will try to get back on my regular blogging train this week (I’ve already got my post half written 🙂 ) but today is going to be a more personal post. If these aren’t your favorite, I do apologize but this is my blog. Feel free to skip this post and rejoin us Wednesday.

My boyfriend and I have been together for nearly six years. We’ve both had our share of shitty relationships before, just like anyone else. But together? We don’t really have any issues. Small fights, like what to have for dinner. Ya know, the same as any other couple. We also aren’t big into P.D.A. It isn’t my thing, and it isn’t his. We are comfortable in our relationship enough to not need to rub it in anyone faces. Sure, we kiss and hold hands in public, but we don’t paw all over each other like hormone crazed teenagers.

Now, this being said, I feel like we are unlike most couples in one way in particular. We have managed to see each other, even if it’s just for 30 minutes, every day since we started dating. No joke. While that can sound overwhelming, it really isn’t. There’s a comfortableness there for us both. We are at a point in our relationship where spending time together can mean he’s watching t.v. while I’m reading a book. We’ve been together for nearly 6 years and have been living together for nearly one year.

However, this weekend has changed that pattern. He was invited to go to Talladega with a friend of ours for his (our friend) bachelor weekend. So it is my boyfriend, our friend (the Bachelor), another mutual friend of ours, and a friend of the bride (and now the bachelor). All of the guys except the mutual friend have ladies. Please don’t think that this is going where you think it’s going. The guys left Saturday and are coming home Monday. They are staying in the Bachelor’s pull behind camper in one of the quieter campgrounds (from what I understand).

Now, in my past relationship, my ex was very possessive. He would have caused a huge blow up and ultimately broke up with me if I went to something like that with 3 of my friends. And if he didn’t (or probably even if he did), he would have texted and called me every few minutes. I don’t want to be like that. I want my boyfriend to have a good time with his friends. So, I kept my texting to a limited yesterday (unless he texted me first) and only called him when a slight family emergency arose (and only after texting asking him if it was ok to call because I didn’t know if he would be able to hear me, ect.) I don’t want him to feel like I’m trying to keep tabs on him.

However, it does mean that I had to stay alone last night for the first time in this new house. Now, I’ve stayed by myself before at my parent’s house when they were out of town, but I have not stayed in this new house alone. I thought I would be more ok with it than I was. The boyfriend had convinced me to borrow one of his father’s hand guns ( a .22) that would be easier for me to handle than his (a .45). After getting me to shoot it once (never fired a handgun before) he felt better about leaving me here alone. His dad sent me with 5 magazines, as if I was going to get into a shoot out at the O.K. corral!

That being said, last night was rough. I finally passed out in the living room around 2:30 this morning. I miss him terribly. I’m so used to him being here when I am, or at least just a text away. Now, he has told me that I can text him whenever, or even call him. Especially if I feel like I need him. I’ve been experiencing really  high levels of anxiety for some reason, lately. While he doesn’t quite get it (he is NOT an anxious person) he does know that it bothers me badly and he doesn’t want me to deal with it alone. He said not to feel bad about texting or calling him because the other two guys’ phones were blowing up.

But, I’m not going to bother him. One reason is, those guys already give him a hard time about not being able to do anything without me (mostly because we go everywhere together). I’m not going to give them another reason to give him a hard time about having a girl friend who can’t leave him alone for a few days. He is nice enough to call me in some down time, and I’m ok with that. It means that even though he’s having fun, I’m in the back of his mind. And not because I can’t quit texting him.

The reality of relationships is that while we get attached to that other person, we do not own them. We do not own every minute of their day, nor every thought that crosses their mind. And that’s ok. You aren’t supposed to  be someone’s everything. They should be complete on their own, and so should you. This makes both you, as an individual, and your relationship stronger. I think in a world of such advanced technology, we forget that. Having cell phones and social media makes it easier than ever to communicate with someone, as well as keep track of them. However, it also distracts that person you’re communicating with from what they are actually doing.

He has never been to a Nascar race. If I were to constantly be texting or calling him, or messaging him on facebook, it would pull his attention away from enjoying not only the race, but the company of his friends. He doesn’t care about Nascar (neither do I) but he went because of his friend. And it doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t get to enjoy and have the full experience while he’s there and I don’t feel like that would happen if I were constantly distracting him.

Trust your significant others. Trust them to go have experiences with friends other than you and trust that you are in their mind somewhere. Chances are they will thank you for it. They will have a much better experience, reconnect with friends (that they may not be as close to because of your relationship), and probably miss you more. Not to mention, it gives you time to do the same. Just trust them and trust yourself.


“A glass full of hope On a search for silver linings, Seeking meaning in the madness Of the things that dodge defining. Lifts the blindfold to find worth Depends entirely on yourself, Happiness is not the standard On which to judge everything else.” – e.h.

“And if we’re truly one, how will I breathe when circumstance pries us apart? You are my oxygen, my sustenance, the blood inside my veins. When we touch, you are my skin, hold all my joy inside of you. When you go, I wither.” – Ellen Hopkins Tricks

“Soul Mates                                                                                                                                                            I don’t know how it is that you are so familiar to me – or why it feels less like I am getting to know you and more as though I am remembering who you are. How every smile, every whisper, brings me  closer to the impossible conclusion that I have known you before, I have loved you before – in another time, a different place – some other existence.” – Lang Leav

 

Between the Sand and the Stardust

 

It was a long weekend (last weekend) and a long week. I hope everyone has survived the winter storm and the snow and ice. We didn’t get too much but just enough to lightly dust the yard. However, my mom slipped and fell at work and broke her elbow. Technically one of the bones in her forearm I believe, but right at the elbow. She had to have surgery and have a plate and screws put in to pull the bones back together. Since my dad does good to just walk around, and just had eye surgery a few days before this happened, my brother and I have been doing all we can to help pick up the slack.

I promise you I am doing my best to get back on track with this blog but January (for the last three years) seems to demand to be noticed. Perhaps now that we’re on the Eve of February, things will fall back into place. I’ve decided to just do a quote post, as I keep running across some that I just fall in love with.

“I loved how his eyes danced merrily, and the gentle way he spoke, the way he filled my aimless days, with bitterness and hope.

I loved him as I fell asleep, and each morning as I woke; I loved him with all my wayward heart – until the day it broke.”  – Lang Leav

” ‘Look up,’ the darkness whispered, ‘Do you wish to travel time? For there are centuries of stories Hidden inside each star’s shine. Yet what you see is just a sentence In a tale with many more, For the light reaching us now Left its home countless years before. And someday in the future Long after your last goodbye, Perhaps somebody else Will turn their eyes up to the sky, And where now you just see darkness They will see a brand new light, The beginnings of a story That has just left home tonight.’ ” – E.h.

“If you came to me with a face I have not seen, with a name I have never heard, I would still know you. Even if centuries separated us, I would still feel you. Somewhere between the sand and the stardust, through every collapse and creation, there is a pulse that echoes of you and I.  When we leave this world, we give up all our possessions and our memories. Love is the only thing we take with us. It is all we carry from one life to the next.” – Stardust

“and I think the saddest thing is how it is so much easier to just not say anything at all.” -kpk

“That’s the problem with being the strong one. No one offers you a hand.” – m.t.

“Even if you know what’s coming, you’re never prepared for how it feels.” – Natalie Standiford

“Boys…every day is a box. It’s up to you whether it’s gonna be a gift or a coffin.” – Sons of Anarchy

“And in your hesitation, I found my answer.”

“Just because you’re hurt, doesn’t mean you’re broken.”

“Maybe the wolf is in love with the moon, and each month it cries for a love it will never touch.”

“And in being so young and dipped in folly I fell in love with melancholy.” – Edgar Allen Poe

“Their love was strong, but timing was wrong, and love decided, they didn’t belong.” – s.t.

“You can find me where the music meets the ocean, if you get the notion, drop on by and stay a while.” – zac brown

“She says nothing at all, but simply stares upward into the dark sky and watches, with sad eyes, the slow dance of the infinite stars.” – Neil Gaiman

“And know you’re not the only ship out on the ocean. Save your strength for things that you can change, forgive the ones you can’t. You gotta let ’em go.” – Zac Brown Let It Go

 

 

Writing 101: Day 12 – Word Counts and Chocolate Pies

Hmm. Today’s assignment is all about word count and changing it up. I know there’s a word counter at the bottom as I type, but I can’t say I’ve ever really paid attention to it. I had to go back and look through my old posts just to see what my average word count per post is. Does that make me a bad blogger? I’ve always just written until I had nothing else to say or until I felt like I had reached a good stopping point. Looks like that’s around the 500 mark for me.

So I guess that this post needs to be longer than that. So, I’m going to tell you a story.

When I was little, my parents worked all the time. My brother and I spent a lot of time with my Dad’s mom. We’ll call her A for short. She and my grandfather had been divorced since before I was born, so she lived alone. She was more than happy to keep us and we were more than happy to see her. She loved to cook with us.

pie

One of my favorite things that she taught me to make was her family’s chocolate pie. It was a recipe she learned from her mom, who learned it from her mom, ect. It’s one of those go-to family recipes that every Southern family seems to have. It’s made for holidays, birthdays, and funerals.

She would start by tying one of her home made aprons around me and tying my hair back. Then she would tell me what ingredients to gather; sugar and flour in their respective bowls from under the island, cocoa and vanilla from the shelf, and milk, butter, and eggs from the fridge. They would all get put on the counter with a large mixing bowl and a sifter.

She would help me carefully measure the sugar, flour, and cocoa into an old sifter that she’d probably had since she was a young woman. It squeaked with every turn. We would sift them together three times to make sure everything was incorporated. Next, it was on to the stove. She would slide a kitchen chair up to the stove for me to stand in and then get the cast iron skillet that belonged to her mother. My parents still have it.

Before we started making the filling, we would take a fork and poke holes in frozen pie crusts. Then we put them in the oven to bake while we made the filling. The first step was to heat the skillet and melt the butter. Then, she would slowly add the dry ingredients while I stirred. It looks really grainy, like sand, but it will all come together.

The next step is to add the eggs and milk slowly and stir constantly. We would take turns stirring while she told me about her grandmother, mom, growing up in the Depression, and how special these pies were when she was a kid. Once the mixture is thickened, to about the consistency of chocolate pudding, you add vanilla and pour it into the cooked pie shells to let it set.

I couldn’t have been any older than 4 or 5 when I started learning to make these with my grandmother. She did it all by memory so it took me a while to remember the exact measurements. My grandmother passed away a few years ago after a terrible bout with Alzheimer’s and dementia. I miss her terribly, as she was when I was a child. Making these pies with her and seeing the light in her eyes is how I always choose to remember her.

I now make these pies for my dad and his brother, the rest of my family, and my boyfriend’s family. They are well loved by everyone. I smile whenever someone tells me how delicious they are because it makes me think of what my grandmother always told me about them: “Such a simple thing, but it always brings the family together and makes them happy, even if it’s just for a minute”

Making them is such a bittersweet thing for me. I love to bring joy to people just like my grandmother did, but thinking of her makes me miss her terribly. She was the kind of lady I aspire to be and she was always proud of me, no matter what. She was kind to everyone and did her best to take care of everyone. Was she always so perfect? No. I know she wasn’t. She got a little vengeful in her divorce from my grandfather, she was stubborn, and stuck in her ways. But she was my grandmother and I loved her.

If you’re younger, or even (and especially) if you aren’t, please take time to spend with your grandparents and parents. They will teach you more than just a chocolate pie recipe. If you listen, they will teach you about life.

What is your favorite memory of one of your family members? What is your family recipe/specialty?

P.S. From my family to yours, here is my Nana A’s Family Chocolate Pie:

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup sugar
  • 2 rounded Tablespoons Flour
  • 2 rounded Tablespoons Cocoa powder
  • 1 rounded Tablespoon butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 1 to 2 teaspoon Vanilla extract.
  • pie shells
  1. Sift together flour, sugar, and cocoa powder in small container until well blended.
  2. Melt butter in cast iron skillet. Add dry ingredients and mix lightly.
  3. Beat the eggs and then add milk. Stir together and then slowly pour into skillet, stirring continuously.
  4. Stir until mixture begins to bubble and thicken.
  5. Remove from heat and add Vanilla extract.
  6. Pour into baked pie shells and allow to set before serving. (It’s just as good at room temp as it is cold the next day.)
  7. A meringue is optional, but we never did it because it isn’t a huge hit in our family. So if you want to add one, just google how to make it. 😉

Blogging 201: Day 1 – Goals

That’s right, dear friends and neighbors. I decided, in my infinite wisdom, that I obviously didn’t have enough on my plate already so I decided to not only sign up for Writing 101 and Blogging 201, but to do them at the same time! So, please hang in there with me as I attempt to do both and still give you something that’s enjoyable to read.

Today’s Blogging 201 Assignment is to list three goals for our blog. To be honest with you, none of these are things I thought about when I first started this blog, and that’s ok. I’m trying to allow it to grow and change as it feels necessary. While I don’t really have a focus for this blog, I guess I do kind of have goals for it.

My first goal is to provide content that helps clarify my thoughts but that others can hopefully relate to. My second goal is to connect better with my audience and perhaps offer a more varied content. I keep talking about DIY’s and such, but I’ve yet to do any of them. My third goal is to be a better neighbor. I want to dedicate more time to reading the blogs of my neighbors and connecting with them.

I blog not for fame, nor for money. I blog to help clear my head. If I connect with readers, that’s awesome. If I ever begin making money from this blog, that would be welcome, but it’s not my main goal. If it just took off one night, it would probably be much the same as it is now. Being self-hosted would be nice, but only if I didn’t lose my dear neighbors (and only if the blog itself could pay the fee for being self-hosted).

What are your goals for your blog? What would you do if your blog just went viral one day?

Writing 101: Day 1 – I write because…I’m a mess.

I have joined Writing 101 to attempt to further my skills that I hope I gained in Blogging 101. 😉  Writing 101 is all about writing every (week)day for a month. They make a really great point that it’s like running, or anything else. You can’t wait for a deep desire to do it because it’s not really going to ever happen like that. I am looking forward to it, and thank you for coming on this journey with me.

Writing 101: Day 1 is all about why we write. We’re instructed to start with “I write because” and just write free form for 15 to 30 minutes, so that’s what I’m going to try and do.

I write because my mind is a jumbled up mess of a place. I write because it gives me solace and a way to organize said mess in my mind. It gives me a concrete place to put thoughts and once I’ve written them, I don’t have to think about them anymore. I can move on to the next thing. I can move on to untying the next knot in the Gordian knot that is my thoughts.

I write because we all have a story to tell. I write because we have a right to tell it. I write because all of our stories are different, yet pieces of them are the same. I write because some of us can’t find the voice to give to our own stories until we find someone else who’s story inspires us to give our own a voice.

I write because I find words that inspire me and I want to share them in the hopes that they inspire someone else. I write because I feel like it. I write because sometime we don’t realize things about ourselves until we are writing. I write because it makes things clear for me.

Why do you write?