Three Tiny Words With Huge Meanings

Humble.  Humility.  Grace.  These are words I struggle with all the time friends.  All the time.  I once told a fellow classmate that if God gives us gifts or talents then surely we must also receive things to help where we are lacking.  And if not God than surely some thing in the universe that ensures all things balance out, more or less, in the end.

Since that time I’ve had people assure me I’d learn these things, like to be humble through experiences.  I’d grasp humility by being taught it as I go on this journey called life.  And grace would come to me, to teach me the way in time.  All these things would come.  No one said they would come easy or when I wanted either.

I suppose part of the problem with these words is that there a contest to them, one of surrender or weakness and that, at least not where I’m from, is a good thing.  One must be strong, tough as nails, able to hold her own.  One needs to know how to fight for what she wants, what she has and so on.  In other words you have to be tough.

But to live a humble life, to have humility and act in grace, don’t these all require deep strength?  Thus does it not mean I’m more weak for not being able to have these traits in my life? Am I weak for wanting them, knowing how hard of a struggle they are and knowing in some ways hey clash with the culture and the images in my life?


Appointments, Doctors and Vets

I’m pretty sure the dog hates the vet as much as I hate going to all my medical appointments. But go we must, so go we did.  We don’t mention the word v-e-t in our house for the dog knows what it means.  The dog has also learned that those letters spell the word so we’ve stopped spelling it as well.  Now it’s just another doctor visit, only this kind specializes  in those with fur, four feet, scales or wings.

on our last trip to said doctor I go to thinking how nice this doctor is.  She is kind and gentle, always gives a belly rub before doing anything else.  Knows exactly where to rub behind the ears or just above the tail.  Basically she’s the kind of doctor I want for myself.

You see my specialists tend to be more, well, clinical and cold in a science-y kind of way. Not that I want them to give me a belly rub, or massage behind my ears or just above my tail.  Mostly because I don’t have a tail, not a huge fan of the whole touching of me anyway. An odd massage here or there at maximum is it.  But now and then, when once more we seem two to three steps behind lupus, I want that comfort if just for a moment.

its my own fault I don’t get that though.  You see long ago in this battle I decided I’d go it alone, just the facts and not worrying about much else.  What I didn’t know the is that there’d be some pretty deep valleys with steep hills to climb out of.  I didn’t realize how bad things could get or the kinds of decisions I’d have to make along the way.  So sometimes I want a little of that kindness before we go right back to being all clinical and warrior like!

On the plus side I never have to get up in a cold, slippery, metal table when I see my doctors.  And I always know what’s going on because we make the decisions together for the most part.  The same can’t be said for the poor dog who has to rely on us to know what’s right.  Granted with lupus you sometimes don’t know what decision to make either.

And the dog’s doctor office always has a smell to it. You can smell it before you open the doo, it’s clean and pet-ish all at the same time.  My doctors offices only smell of clean, mild disinfectant.  So I don’t shake when the door is opened.  I don’t panic or bolt either, thankfully not.  Of course I’m also not stuck on a leash with a human boat anchor in the event I needed to make a break for it.  And I chose if I’m going or not, where as we decide for the dog.  Because if we didn’t the dog would never go.  All in all I guess things sort of balance out.  At least that’s the story I’m sticking to!  😉

Ice Cold Pool, or Changing a Climate

We got an indoor swimming pool today! Not heated, but you can’t have everything you want in life can you!  One should never look a gift swimming pool in the mouth, especially an indoor one, except we weren’t looking for an indoor pool, it just kind of happened that way.

I came home from a lecture and thought I’d make a cup of coffee because you just never can have too much coffee in my world.  So I went over to the lovely contraption that stole my heart and set about making a lovely cup of dark, warm elixir sure to soothe the day away.  Only I needed up in th swimming pool.

Okay so technically unless you happen to be an ant, or maybe a spider, it’s more or less a puddle.  A puddle of cool water on my kitchen floor. Right next to the bottom of my refrigerator.  A puddle the dog liked to sample, but not roll on.  Probably too cool for his liking.  Granted it was refreshing on my feet, not unlike when you dangle your legs into a pool while you sit on the edge of if reading a book.

So after announcing that everyone had to get out of the pool, I went on pool clean up aka mopping up he puddle.  Only it kept refilling itself.  It was almost like a waterfall when I took a closer look at the bottom of the refrigerator, right where the freezer is.  Water was streaming out of there into the pool.  The pool I hadn’t asked for, but was rather refreshing.

Okay so my indoor pool is being feed by cold almost glacier waters.  Melting icebergs, well technically ice cubes, but who’s counting?  And how did this happen?  Climate change?  Sort of.  If you call climate change being a case of the freezer door not being close red completely and the warm air of the heating up day mingling into the once cold freezer, which caused the ice to melt and flow out of the machine and onto the floor in a refreshing pool.

Everyone had to come out of the freezer, although technically not frozen any more so I could clean the mess, assess the damage and see what would happen next.  There was no Red Cross for the frozen families of peas and blueberries.  No group of engineers sent out to ensure this catastrophe never happened again.  Instead everything was cleaned up put away and the door firmly closed.  Climate change crises in the house averted and pool put back where it belongs!

it’s a good thing too because I forgot to place the no lifeguard on duty signs anywhere. Imagine if someone drowned? 😉

Maybe next time when I think I hear chimes, I will actually go and see if it’s the alarm to the machine telling me it isn’t closed instead of deciding it could only be sounds coming from an open window!  Too bad the real climate change issues aren’t this easy to solve.

For Art’s Sake

Art speaks to some people.  Art captures our attention, dazzles our eyes and stirs emotions.  I’ve heard al these things about Art.  What I had never heard about Art before is that Art can be sticky.  Art can get under your feet, tangled in your hair and leave a mess in your house.

Well of course I’m talking about the wild, creative, a hundred-miles-an-hour-with-your-hair-on-fire, immature form of Art.  I’m sure that as Art matures, tastes are defined and such.  Sticky hand prints surely cease from bring the everyday routine! 😉

Art, as I currently know him, is a whopping whole three fingers old.  He loves all manner of bright colors, naps, sticky food and his bunny.  He adores finger painting, crayons, markers and organic material such as mud and dirt!

As Art matures, as his tastes change he may move away from some of the mediums he currently uses to express himself.  To be honest I’m hoping he gets past the mud and dirt phase soon!

Art as a child works perfectly with art as the communication, medium, expression or what have you.  So a little Art in my life is a good thing, although I must confess I  grateful to not live with Art permanently.  I mean I enjoy Art, but I’m not ready for a greater commitment.


Ripples and Effects

I decided to take a walk, ok a very slow stroll, down by the water.  There is something restorative about begin out near the water.  Besides who can resist the adorable waddle of the little ducks? 😉 Certainly neither the dog nor I!

So we walked along the water, now and then stopping to observe a duck or perhaps a swan.  We stopped to sniff, watch a squirrel and gain energy.  We needed energy because  there was a squirrel and squirrels must be chased.  Even if you happen to be attached to a leash.  And attached to the other end of the leash is a boat anchor, also known as a human.  And the boat anchor does a great job of being, well, an anchor.

While we were trying to terrorize the poor squirrel we encountered a mother with a little girl and a puppy.  The puppy wasn’t interested in the squirrel or us, just a specific  patch of grass.  The little girl, sensing mother was distracted, saw the puddle.  A nice, big, deep puddle.  The kind that demands you splash thru the center of it, regardless of your foot wear, or your mother.  So the little girl did just that as her mother managed to gasp out that the child wasn’t wearing boots and would ruin her shoes.

A huge smile spread across the child’s face as she repeated the fact she had no boots.  She didn’t care, she was in the middle of the puddle without a care in the world. Her mother wasn’t exactly thrilled with any of this.  Her mother was probably thinking of ruined shoes, wet socks and who knows what else.

What they remember of this day when they looked back?  Would it be ruined shoes, the emotions or would the mother decide to stop gasping and realize that puddles, like small children, don’t last forever.  Puddles dry up and children grow up and move beyond puddles.




Leaving Behind

His bottom lip stuck out a bit, just enough for a bird or two to perch on! 😉  But to his credit there was not even the trace of a quiver in his voice as he explained that he would be going to a new school next year.  He was worried about leaving behind his friends.

I wanted to tell him that there will be many people who move in and out of his life as he grows up.  I wanted to let him know that you don’t always keep the friends you had when you were seven years old and that its okay.  I wanted to assure him that he’d have new friends and he may or may not keep all of them either.

People change.  Sometimes they change while we stay the same, sometimes we change and they stay the same.  Sometimes it isn’t change so much as just a parting of ways.  And yes, sometimes it is sad to say goodbye to friends. Sometimes people just slip away from us or we push them away.

But I didn’t tell him any of these things, instead we talked about how his new school would be closer to home.  How he could ride his bike to and from school.  And how cool it would be to go home for lunch instead of eating sandwiches every day.

I didn’t tell him how I still hold a few of my childhood friends very close to me.  Nor did I tel him that as I’ve gotten older, as my interests have changed, so have my friends.  I didn’t tell him how I’ve had friends for ten to fifteen years and then moved on from them.  Not because they are horrible people, but because we simply ended up at very different points on journeys.  When you find that you aren’t on the same  map as your friend, you can still keep it all together with work, effort and energy.  Or you can look at the map and realize you probably won’t be going back that way again.  You can be grateful for the friendship while it existed and understand that people change and so do circumstances.

But to a seven-year old this may not make sense.  To a seven-year old, this is all too much.  But to that same seven-year old  there is an amazing adventure, a new path to take his/her journey.  And who knows where that path will go?  Some place magical?  Some place new?  New friends?  Surely all of this and more are just around the bend as you take the new path!


All That Shines

When I was young, one of the elderly neighbor ladies nicknamed me Magpie.  She made this declaration before I was six months old.  She assured my mother I was attracted to shiny objects.  Which apparently proved itself to be true as I grew a little older.

Shiny foil paper?  I need that!  Shiny pennies?  Yes please!  Ooh sparkly diamonds and metal from the treasure chest for being good at my appointment?  Get out-of-the-way and lemme in there!

Still to this day certain shiny objects catch my attention.  But a voice also echoes in my head.  The voice of a former coworker reminding me that a knickknacks was just one more thing to dust.  Because let’s be honest here, if you don’t dust it stops shining.  I know, scary but true! 😊

So what’s a girl to do?  Well she can give in and dust, or get someone else to do the dusting.  Or she can decide to just wear shiny objects instead.  The problem here is I can only wear so many necklaces on my neck.  I’ve only do many digits to slide rings onto and too many bracelets is never a good thing!  So then limits must be put in place for this style of shiny objects.

a girl could get a new house, appliances, vehicle or mirror to help bring more shiny objects into her life.  Or she can settle for the idea that not everything shiny must be possessed by her.  I know, not nearly as much fun! Just kidding, but seriously who has ever been accused of hording jewelry?  Exactly it’s just a collection!

So this magpie limits ownership on shiny objects for practical and economic reasons.  She still admires them, but realizes that possession doesn’t make them shine any better. Frankly some of the best, shiny objects I’ve seen cannot be possessed indefinitely.  Dew shining in the early morning sunlight, for example, evaporates.  And that fleeting sense of it seems to make it all that more special and shine a little brighter.

i wonder if the birds find the shiny objects not in their possession to be more appealing than the ones they already own.  I also wonder what they to with all the shining material they find and claim.  And I wonder what it would be like to fly in the shining sky on shimmering feathers.  But for now I shall be a human magpie, content with admiring the shine from here, on the ground.

A Side Effect Of Life

Stress and tension always seem to settle deep in my upper back and neck.  Now and then it requires some assistance to be set out and on its way.

Some times this assistance comes in the form of stretching.  Other times heat seems to be the answer.  Now and then an ointment or pill may solve the issue.  Rarely, strong hands that massage, stretch, tease and pull the stress out are required.

After a session of having hands wring and knead the stress out of my upper back I can feel as if all my bones have dissolved into jelly of   some sort.

When this happens, this magical transformation to jelly, it seems as though a part of me is suddenly missing. It’s a strange sensation, to have a part of you missing by your own choice free you’ve carried it around for a while.

I’ve been told that stress is a natural side effect of living.  It’s just a matter of how we manage it.  Now and then stress seems to manage us a little better than we manage it.  It’s really a question of who gets the upper hand, so to speak.  If stress gets the upper hand sometimes you need to a strong hand to remove it!

Of Bubblegum, Tea and Such

Someone offered me a watermelon tea the other day.  A refreshing watermelon tea, iced they said.  Hey, I like watermelon!  I could live off the stuff, sort of.

So try the watermelon iced tea did I do.  And try to keep a nice straight face, did I.  I suspect I failed at that rather miserably.  Can’t be helped.

To me, the watermelon tea, iced or otherwise, tasted like my childhood.  Watermelon flavoured chewing gum.  Sticky, sweet watermelon flavoured chewing gum.  Who wants to drink that?  Not me!

I appreciated the thought and it is the thought that counts.  Unless you are dying of thirst.  If you are dying of thirst, no amount of thought will help.  You need to drink.

I wasn’t dying of thirst at the time I was given the tea.  And like a dutifully good person I drank it, said it was different and made a mental note to not have it again.

I suppose I could have left he tea, but that seems rude some how.  Wrong.  Instead I drank it out of politeness, and wondered who on earth would think bubblegum flavoured tea would be a brilliant idea.  Then I realized it may very well be lots of people like it.  Why else would they make it?  And then I realized if I was dying of thirst, bubblegum flavoured tea might do just the trick.

Still I will stick to eating watermelon and just basically juicing it as is.  Some things are best left natural.