Tuesday, June 12, 2018

The day before Richard's birthday. Been a tough year (two?). Last December, Joey died; Chuck (Richard's cousin and our friend) also died. I still grieve for Joey and think fondly of both men. Chuck and Richard were very close when young and when Rich and I first dated. Rich's parents helped Chuck when his wife was very ill, often taking meals over for Chuck and the kids.  Chuck's parents were long gone, so Perry and Doris' kindess was greatly welcomed, especially since we no longer lived in that area.

Been struggling with loss ever since Joe died. I can only think that it is due in part to missed opportunities. I was actually going to visit Joe and Frank this year. Probably not at Derby time because there is always so much going on I don't get to spend a lot of time with them. And, of course, I doubled back to missed opportunities with Rich. Ugh!

So, what's new? After a lousy fall and winter (sickness, family issues, deaths, grief, more sickness), I signed up for courses this semester. Back to book clubs/groups. I attend only a couple, but read the books for four. Still having trouble with my vision (after the cataract surgery); some days, my eyes just don't feel good while reading, and even get headaches after just a little while of reading. Taking Tai Chi again. Yay! Also, I am taking a course in pictorial calligraphy. Supposed to be practicing as I type...tee hee. It's mostly about strokes and how to use them to make some basic designs -- leafs, feathers, trees, pastries, etc. The fall course will cover letters and numbers. I'm progressing very slowly and poorly even though the instructor regularly compliments my efforts! (She wants me to succeed, especially because of my hand--she said so. Hmmmm......)

Shadow is hanging in there. Or should I say doing well for a 19-year old cat with hyperthyroidism and kidney disease? He's been a blessing despite his big paws which carry litter all over the house and the never-ending struggle to get his pills down his throat twice a day! He's napping at my side as I type, which is another blessing because he has picked up the habit of walking across the keyboard. Crazy!

A beautiful day even though the temp is too high for this area this time of year. It's okay, though, because the humidity is low--yay! Stopped in The Distillery for coffee and apple crisp while a friend's car was in for maintenance. Brought up an interesting discussion about coffee out today: in most restaurants, it is not hot enough. It wasn't today; she nuked it to warm it up. Sometimes it's bitter (it was today). I drink coffee out because no one (except me) makes a decent cup of tea today. Tea out is usually awful, partly because no one boils the water anymore and also because most of the teas are run-of-the-mill tea bags. No thank you! The apple crisp was wonderful, though. 

Well, another entry, another promise: I am going to try and write on this with some regularity. I daren't promise every day though I hope to do so. So, off to write some letters -- I'm way behind on replying to people, also. Grief. It really did take over my soul. Wish me well.  Best.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Saturday evening, August 6, 2016

Sitting here with the Golden Girls chattering in the background, hoping to come up with something scintillating, or at least interesting, to say. Can't believe I still haven't written here much at all this year despite my promise to do so. It's not that I've been extremely preoccupied or doing all kinds of wonderful things.

I follow Wil Wheaton's blog and nearly every time I read a post, I am impressed by how much he struggles to live the life he wants. I'm not holding him up because he's famous, but rather, because he's another human being who struggles to live a productive, happy life and writes about his struggles honestly and heart-rending at times.

I'm not struggling right now, per se, but I am frustrated that I don't feel like I'm using my time wisely or enjoying life as I want to. So, to help me, I've started a life audit. Here's hoping I can figure out where best to place my energies!

Well, I was afraid of this -- I cannot write. Everything I start sounds ridiculous or not what I want to say. Maybe that's why I've been reading so much lately. Sigh. Maybe tomorrow. 'Nite.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Saturday Evening, May 21, 2016

Tough week. Mostly dealing with people. Had a great conversation with a friend earlier tonight and was able to both vent and hear a good take on much of what had upset me and really, really strained my inner resources this week.

During the past five plus years, one of the comments I've heard often is that "being older is like being a teenager in high school." When I first heard it, I laughed, poo-pooed it, and moved on. As the years passed, I came to not only believe the saying but to realize how ill-equipped I was to deal with these changing times. See, I avoided much of the nonsense in high school by ignoring much of the crap swirling around us. In hindsight it probably wasn't a smart move because I don't think I built up enough internal resources or thick skin to deal with similar issues today.

But -- and this is the most important point -- having to deal with them this week has gotten me out of my head and here writing. I need to work out my thoughts but without Richard beside me, I quit doing so. I gave up more times than not. I didn't deal with issues or emotional stressors in a timely manner or at all. And now that I am joining groups and interacting with many people regularly, I find I am at a loss sometimes on how to deal with crap when faced with it.

So, here's what's on my mind tonight and what dragged me down this week:

Writing groups -- I cannot find one where I fit. The latest one I was in never felt "right" but I kept going and some days it went well and other days I wished I had never gone. This week I quit. For me to do so is almost unheard of! I tend to stay long after I know something isn't working for me because I hate to "fail" and quitting is failing to me. The other wg I was in disbanded due to querulous members and the leader moving away. Another group reemerged, but the leader changed the day and time and did not invite previous members, so we only learned about it through local chatter. There are lots of wg locally, so I think I'll try some out. First, I think I'll decide what it is I want to accomplish with such a group and how I can contribute. No more going and expecting just to be part of a "group," this doesn't seem to be enough. Groups operate according to who leads and the spoken and unspoken code of conduct maintained, so I think if I notice I'm not in step with said conduct, I either shouldn't join or shouldn't stay. Now that's thinking!

Well, forgot to mention, I was really pumped up to start back on this blog, to get back to writing my thoughts so that I could work out some things that plagued me, but when I sat down at my computer I was greeted with an unwelcome message. Microsoft had loaded Windows 10 on my desktop without my permission! For months I had been refusing the offers. I went back and forth wondering whether I should do so or not, but I ultimately decided that I wanted to keep Windows 7. I have Win 10 on my laptop and don't mind it at all. However, I love Win 7 and find it just a little more pleasing to use, but for the life of me I no longer can say why. I like the looks of my desktop with a picture of my dogs and all the icons nicely arranged, so maybe ..... 

Anyway, having to wait for Microsoft to restore my computer to the last version I had on my machine took the fire out of my resolve to write and slowed my momentum. Sadly, I lost my train of thought and couldn't pull together all I had intended to write. Which does remind me of something I have been researching and trying to get for over a year now: I want to buy a system that lets me write or speak my thoughts and then converts them to text. I tried Dragon Naturally Speaking years ago, but found it cumbersome and could not use it easily. I've tried tape recorders, but don't like that I still have to type up what I spoke. I looked into several options but got so mired in details that I could not decide what one might be what I would use. I go back to the hunt periodically, but still cannot find "the one" that would meet my needs. So, I write sporadically and not sufficiently for me. < Big Sigh >

Shadow, my cat, needs his thyroid pill and food, so I'm going to cease writing. Hope to be here nearly every day from now on. 'Nite.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Jingle Bell Run for Arthritis Research - November 17, 2013

Yay!  Worked the booth at this year's Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis Research held at the OCC SRC Arena here in the Syracuse, NY area.  Great turnout.  Nearly 1,600 people ran or walked and many of them helped the cause also by signing petitions for more research into arthritis care and cure and for legislation to provide financial aid to people who elect to become pediatric arthritis-care doctors.  In our area, there are only two physicians who treat pediatric arthritis, and not too long ago, there was only one!  

I was very impressed with the runners/walkers.  On the whole, they were wonderfully pleasant, open to listen to our requests for signatures, and very upbeat.  Many themselves also have this debilitating disease, so they inspired me also.  More than anything, I wanted to be able to run/walk with them, so I was glad I at least had the opportunity to meet so many.

Sunday evening.  Cold outside.  Again, cannot believe it's been so long since I've written here.  I've written nearly every day in my journal, and some days did the "pages" Julie Cameron recommends in her Artist's Way books/workbooks.  All that notwithstanding, I am still struggling to make time for writing (well, for nearly anything).  I've let the busyness of living keep me from recording my thoughts and let the distractions of this modern life hold my attention long enough to dilute any interesting or enlightening thoughts. 

Something happened yesterday that annoyed me.  One of our local churches had a food drive scheduled.  I didn't put my food out because it was raining.  So, I called for a pickup as their flyer had offered.  The guy said he'd be right there.  Over a half hour later, I called again and asked if they were coming.  A different person answered and said he'd driven by but hadn't seen anything, then said "should we have knocked on the door?"  Well, I didn't really know what to say to that (without sounding rude or worse), so I waited.  He said they would come over, so I said I would leave the bags outside.  They never came!  This seems to be a trend in my life--people saying they'll do something and then not, but somehow making it appear that they indeed have done the thing or made some attempt.  It puzzles me.  I have a friend who regularly says he'll do something, but then doesn't.  I have another friend who repeatedly says she wants to do something and then after much discussion and figuring out her options or possible avenues to pursue presumably is off to do the whatever.  Only she rarely does the thing!  Is this a trait of people I know or run into or is it more pervasive in society at large?  Still gathering data, but not without getting annoyed at times (tee hee).

Just read the posts I'd written here the last two times, so I'll update my status one of those topics.  That friend who was driving me to distraction with all her sexual conquests no longer annoys me.  We had a heart-to-heart one day--it came out of a conversation about men and her obsession with a few.  I told her about my negative feelings toward such conversations and how they were affecting me and thus our friendship.  She acknowledged my feelings (Yay! and Thank you!) and then we proceeded to talk about her behavior and my need for something else.  The end result is we understood each other better, but we no longer spend much time together.  See, actions have consequences.  I was not surprised because I'd come to recognize my role in her life.  I just did not want to be that go to person. 

I'm working with another writer of memoirs.  This time the person is writing a memoir about her Down syndrome son's life.  Although a memoir, she hopes it will be helpful for other parents with DS children and for teachers, caregivers, medical personnel, etc. of such people.  It's slow going.  I can't get her to do the work--the rewriting, the reorganizing, the overall restructuring often required.  She says quite often that she's lazy and she doesn't have the desire to do the work.  So, I am still trying to get a rhythm going for our project.  Challenging.

It's officially December.  December 7th to be exact.  Warren's birthday and Pearl Harbor Day.  Warren is the man who "broke my heart" before I fortunately met Richard.  Took me years to not think ill of him and feel the pain of heartbreak.  Thank God for Richard and true love.  When I thought about Warren today, I realized it was without any feeling except that it was his birthday.  Nice.  Guess I finally my "first love" has found a comfortable place in my memoirs.  Yay!

Well, I had high hopes for writing today, but too many conversations and too much outside distractions have destroyed my need to write and depleted my energy to do so.  So, I'll say goodnight and God bless (I loved Edward R. Murrow).

Thursday, October 17, 2013


Thursday evening, October 17, 2013

Can't believe it's been over two years since I've written here.  The good news is I was busy editing manuscripts for some very talented writers who have since published their works.  Yay!  

What's been on my mind quite a bit lately is the concept of friendship.  I want to understand both this world of being an older person and alone and having only casual friends and acquaintances for support.  In particular one friend turned out to be more of a good, nice acquaintance than a real friend.  I sensed this from the start, but laziness or wishful thinking caused me to often want more from her only to get frustrated later.  Sigh.  

Anyway, what's bothering me is this acquaintance is obsessed with men.  She talks about them more than about anything else.  She chases them, even if they have a significant other.  If we run into one while we're out, she leaves me, often without a word, to be with him.  Unfortunately, I once told her that at our age life is too short not to be with someone if that's what we want.  (Or some variation -- I can't remember my exact words, but she has reminded me of them after ditching me!) 

What I can't understand is why her behavior bothers me.  I think part of the reason is that she rarely asks about me other than an initial inquiry.  And I'm really more interested in spending quality time with her, not spending it talking about men, including how wonderful they think she is.  Which is what she loves to stress -- how wonderful and special, etc. all the men think she is.  


Well, that went nowhere.  While I was struggling to write, the phone rang and it was someone who'd called because she was concerned I had not returned her call of last week.  So, I took it.  A little over an hour later, here I sit, in a different frame of mind.  Sigh.  Maybe another time I can redress the issue above since it bothers me often.

Anyway, my thoughts are all a jumble now (new and old issues competing for my emotional attention -- big sigh).


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Is it really July?

It's been a while since I've written here or even in my journal.  I just can't get out of this grief cycle this year.  I seem to be okay one day and sink beyond belief for days at a time and wonder at myself, but still cannot right myself.  Sigh.

Many things have been happening, some good, some not.  Life is still moving forward even if my heels are sore and beaten from dragging.  One tough thing, a very close, dear friend has moved on and is now involved with someone, no more to call me or visit occasionally.  Since Richard's death, life seems to constantly remind me that friendships end, people move on, and sometimes someone you really care about never talks to you again.  It's terribly unsettling, made moreso because I don't have Rich to talk to about how such a loss is effecting me.  Consequently, the loss feels compounded and I cry.

One interesting (and good?) thing that happened this week when I was talking with my pain management therapist.  Something triggered in me and although I struggled, I realized some important things.  I've never "done the work" to get through all the emotional pain  inside me.  Sometimes I was aware and deliberately refused to do so, but mostly, I just couldn't do it (or didn't know how, practically).  Haven't reached enlightenment.  Big sigh.

Guess I'm not up to writing still.  I miss writing.  Didn't go to my writing group meeting last week.  Plan on going this week.  Hope to start writing, but for now, I'm going to bed.  Maybe tomorrow.