Sharing And Showers

I don’t usually share my shower with anyone. I’m rather particular that way. I rather enjoy my shower, alone. So how is it that I came to share my shower today with not one other individual, but two?

And these weren’t the kind of individuals I’d think to spend my shower with, but there they were, just up in the corner. Slowly they’d repel down just a bit and then go back up in to the corner. As they got bolder they came more and more into the water, which meant closer to me.

The thing is, if there were two spiders that I could seem how many other spiders were near by that I just failed to see? And can I charge them the water fees? Or at least split the cost? I mean it isn’t like I invited them in as guests or anything.

Surprise, I’m Poor

I’ve never considered myself to be poor or wealthy. I’ve always been able to cover my bills, set some aside and buy some items I wanted after buying my needs. Middle class really I guess is what you’d call it. It certainly hasn’t been pay check or pay check living.

Imagine my surprise at taking part in a small survey and so covering that I’m, in fact, considered poor. I’m a well off poor, it apparently poor all the same. I know, I was shocked too!

Beloved figures that this is a reflection of the quickly fading middle class. He also suspects my approach to money is more in keeping with someone who once had none and now has a bit,

Beloved knows poverty all too well. He grew up in a house where his mother worked multiple jobs just to meet the basic needs. If she was going to supply something beyond the basics, perhaps to fill a child’s Christmas or birthday wish, she had to pick up additional work and scrape money together.

When he took the same survey, he was not classified as poor, but instead wealthy. Why? His approach to money is vastly different from mine. He buys that which he desires without caution. (Granted he has covered his needs and bills first.)

I drive him up a wall as I debate and hem and haw over purchasing a want, not a need. He wants something, he simply buys it. And so he is classified as wealthy and I am considered to be poor because I’m cautious with my purchases.

It isn’t a bad thing and it helps explain some of our differences. It also helps balance us out as a couple.

Water Dogs

He was relaxing in the water after having a bit of fun. He had happily splashed and frolicked in it before just settling down to rest and relax. He looked comfortable and peaceful which struck me as funny because this is the dog who hates water when it comes to baths.

Get him outside in the right type of rain and he will simply want to sit out in it, or stomp through puddles. The right kind of rain, by the way, is a fairly light and cold rain. A rain that happens when the temperature is just above freezing so it isn’t pleasant for his human owners. Perhaps it is our discomfort he enjoys the most.

Take the same dog and put him in the bath tub, the nice clean bath tub with towels and no slip mats and warm water and you’d think he was allergic to water. Just a tiny bit of his paw has to go in the water to set off what can only be described as his whirling dervish act.

I suspect that the plan to all this whirling and spinning, not to mention flailing and shaking about, is to get as much water out of the tub before he is placed in it. The way you know you’ve removed enough water is when the bathroom resembles a place where an indoor monsoon has happened and your human is thoroughly soaked. Then and only then might you relent and decide the right amount of water is left.

This same dog will happily sit in the rain, walk through and roll in puddles.

So there I was, freezing eight different ways while he sat and reset in the puddle. He refused to move. He had suddenly gained a thousand pounds or so of seemed when I tried to pull him or pick him up. Perhaps that has to do with all the water that his fur was sucking up. 😉

No pleading, cajoling, begging or bribing worked, he simply wanted to stay there in the cold, wet weather. My neighbor shook his head at me when he asked why I was standing out in the foul weather and I pointed to the dog.

I don’t blame my neighbor one bit, considering I outweigh the dog, I have in the past, picked him up and moved him my desire. But get him in a puddle and suddenly you can’t lift him or move him. Until you are confronted with this you don’t believe it to be possible, I know because when Beloved first told me about this phenomena I didn’t believe him either!

Kicking It Off

I slipped off my shoes, a small act that seemed to be such a huge thing at that moment. It wasn’t that my shoes were uncomfortable or anything, it was more a case of defying the rules or norms.

People expect that while sitting at my desk I would be wearing shoes, but I’m not because I’ve kicked them off and I don’t care what people think about naked feet. Frankly it’s silly to expect and anticipate that because of how a person appears, this is the measure of the person.

I’ve said it before and I will say it again, fashionable shoes are rarely comfortable. It’s hard to find comfortable, stylish shoes that fit my feet. And to be honest, I don’t want to always wear shoes just because I’m in the office. Not that I want to walk around the floor with naked feet either because that’s just eww!

I have coworkers who, when working alone, tend to wear shorts, even though that’s not what you’d expect. Even though it’s against the “dress code”. I suspect we all try to show our individuality and flaunt that line when it comes to the dress code rules. And maybe even what’s expected of us by cultural norms.

It becomes a chance to be us, to allow our true personalities out for just a bit while still conforming or adapting to the expected behaviors.

Sure we all belong to certain groups or communities, the ones we blend in with and don’t even realize it. Perhaps some of our communities allow us to step into a shade of being an individual now and then, but go too far and you might not belong any more. Belonging seems to be part of being human. Just as pushing that boundary of fitting in and showing ourselves seems to be part of being human.

Of course, because I’m a human, when I have to do it, I slip back on those shoes, or other shoes that aren’t conventional. When it comes to it, here’s something satisfying about kicking off the shoes when you aren’t supposed to! 😉

Driving

Beloved has a very old aunt, she has lived through things that I’ve only read about as history. She’s an amazing wealth of knowledge and her mind is still as sharp as a tack.

What has happened, though, is her ability to get around has changed and not for the better. Streets she once up and down as a young girl and later rode her bike at breakneck speed now are witness to her slow shuffling. And sadly this slow shuffling is not even a daily thing any more.

Beloved remembers his aunt walking everywhere briskly. He remembers her eschewing automobiles when she had perfectly good legs and a bicycle. Now he takes her places in his automobile. When he first started driving her places, such as for groceries, she would complain about him making a fuss over her.

Now she calls him and asks him what his schedule is. He always answers her the same way; he schedule is open except between the hours of X and Y. With those letters representing the hours he just be at work. Even if he has something else planned, he will alter that to accommodate her and her errands.

Now and then Beloved will swing by and take her for a car ride. Normally she will recount her younger days and how she got about or what she remembers about the area they are in.

I wonder what it will be like to be in her position. Would I be okay with my memories of how things were as my body doesn’t let me get around more. Would I become with that? I doubt I’d be okay if my mind was what failed me first, although Beloved says if one’s mind goes one is always experiencing something new. And as an added bonus you may not even know if your body was failing you as well.

I can only hope Beloved will want to take me driving when I find it harder to do things. Oh, wait. He already does that!

Finding The Shoe That Fits…Lupus

It isn’t that I want to be Cinderella, because I surely don’t. Between all the cleaning and housekeeping she did, and then those glass slippers (torture to be sure!), I really have no desire to be her.

And yet here I sit, pondering a foot that suddenly won’t fit a shoe. Okay so technically it’s a bit more of an issue Prince Charming had and was dealing with, but the difference is I know this foot fits the shoe. Usually anyways.

I woke up with what we call a “Princess Fiona” foot after the character in Shrek. No it isn’t green, rather a mottled purple color. Bit the foot looks rather like Her foot did when she turned into an ogre. It’s more than twice the size of my “regular” foot. It doesn’t really have much of an ankle left to it to be honest.

How, you may be wondering, did I end up with a swollen, purple foot that looks like it belongs on an animated female ogre who is also a princess? One word. Lupus.

Lupus has provided me with this wonderful (sure) opportunity to explore life in different ways. Such as having two completely different sized feet. One that looks like the skin might rupture from all the swelling. One that says you can change color and become purple, or brilliant red.

There is only so much I can do to hide this foot and this is what I’m contemplating. Socks will hide the color and if I’m careful, ,y pants will help hide some of the swelling. However the shoe issues is a bit more challenging. Sure I can cram it into my matching shoes, but the foot will simply swell out of it, like dough rising in a nice warm place will swell up and put of the bowl if you let it.

After I figure out the shoe issue there will be the practice to get my walking down so it seems fairly normal rather than a horrible limp and what have you.

Some people proudly wear their lupus, knowing they are warriors and they are survivors. I do that too. Sometimes. And sometimes I want to hide what it does. Only I have. No fairy godmother to help in the shoe department!

Luous, and many chronic illnesses, demand that we coexist with them in a strange, slightly uneasy peace. You never really know from moment to moment how it’s all going to be. You may be fine and then, boom! It’s temper tantrum time and you are left to deal with a full-blown flare of the illness. At any rate you are left with a constant companion, one that reminds you daily that you aren’t exactly like your “normal” friends and family. It helps make you a bit more unique a there are times that’s the last thing you want.

Now, two different shoes or the rising dough foot effect? Which will be better?

Recipe for Exhaustion and Love

I wanted so much to get everything just right. I wanted to have things baked to welcome him home. I wanted his favorite meal prepared and I wanted the house just so.

I started out strong, a trip to the grocery store (shudder) to buy all things needed. I went early to avoid crowds etc. Which made it far better than if there were crowds.

I came home and rolled up my sleeves, figuratively because I wasn’t wearing long sleeves, and got to work. I measured and poured. I stirred and fold. I kneaded and tossed and I baked and cooled.

And then I collapsed. I ran out of steam, the train left the station without me. My get up and go, got up and got going and left behind an exhausted and painful version of me.

Enter Lupus. She had been hiding, waiting for that moment, the one where I let my guard down, got busy and didn’t notice any of the signs that she was nosing around. And now, when I couldn’t ignore her presence she was there.

She, apparently detests a clean house more than my cooking for she let me cook before stole my energy. I imagine she was hungry and that’s why I was allowed to cook. But she isn’t a fan of change, even subtle change such as moving the furniture for a good cleaning.

My desire to have things just so for Beloved’s arrival let me struggle through and get most of the cleaning done, although not as well as I would have liked. And then I collapsed, feeling Lupus now running through my body like wildfire. She covered ground quickly, leaving no space of my body untouched.

Beloved arrived to an utterly exhausted me, the me with the flushed face of Lupus. The me with the joints that were swollen and require oiling. The me that is not much fun. The me I try to hide from him and friends.

And once again he reminded me I didn’t need to do any if these things, that it was enough for me to just be there and share with him. He wasn’t angry, nor disappointed. He just reminded me that food and clean houses are nice, but it’s the time with a person that’s most important.

So well I rest up, trying to find energy, he is the one who is cooking and cleaning. Whistling even because he’s happy we are together. I wish I had his grace and understanding. I’m blessed to have some one like him as a partner and equally blessed to have amazing friends who also come with grace, understanding and compassion.

So while Lupus may be active and running free, I am still winning! 😉