The four-footed one and I had a nice amble today. We had no specific destination nor any specific timeframe to adhere to so we took our time. We watched clouds waltz ever so slowly yet gracefully across the sky. We listened to the breeze as it made the tree stand way. We watched in wonder at a crow with beautiful blue-black feathers as it determined the best way to open up a nut it had found.
Okay so maybe the four-footed didn’t do all those things, but while she was doing her thing I was doing mine. For all I know she could have been plotting her getaway while I was shaking off the bad mood through nature.
The crow, for all I know, may have had worries and fears of its own, but it carried on with the situation at hand. There is something to be said about letting things sort themselves while you allow nature to soothe the unpleasantness or at least distract you with that which is bigger than yourself.
To be honest being out in nature let me forget myself and consider things from a different point of view. It didn’t fix my situation any, but it let the negativity slip away even if just for a short period of time. And in that time I was able to count blessings and find some semblance of a smile from within.
Today I’ve been dreaming about food. Well dreaming is probably the wrong word, lusting is probably more accurate. I have been lusting after food today. No don’t misunderstand dear friends, I love good food and I love sharing it with people I enjoy so it’s not unusual for me to think about food. I’ve been known to plan whole menus as a means of pleasantly passing time and I’ve no shame in this either.
However today I’ve been running on the see food, think food, desire food sort of cycle. I blame my medications partially for this shift in my food relationship. I also blame people sharing delicious ideas and placed with me all in a very short period of time. This sharing lead me to feel like I need to try it all, right now. Not that I’m complaining about people sharing these things with me; whether we break bread together or separately but shared experiences I think is a wonderful thing indeed.
The thing is, though, between my medication, my lupus flare and the insane hamster on the wheel that is my brain, I fee exhausted just trying to figure out what to do and try and when. And of course this makes my health teeter totter a bit more. Again I am not complaining for I am blessed, truly blessed to have wonderful people to share food with and more importantly to not having to worry about where the next meal comes from. I just need to tame the lusting of said food into something more manageable so food isn’t falling off my plate!
I never anticipated that where I was born, what I did for a living or who I professionally associated with could result in me being unable to freely travel to countries. Now I can’t change where I come from. And I will be hanged if I will let anyone tell me who I can and cannot associate with. Same goes for what I do for a living and I’m fully aware that what I do is something that a lot of people feel is unnecessary.
Perhaps if I had been born in a different country I wouldn’t feel so strongly attached to having had the freedom to choose my career. I may not even feel so strongly about keeping my career, but I was born in a country where the government did not dictate my choices. And I was blessed to grow up with parents who didn’t tell me I couldn’t do things because of my gender or such.
I cherish my freedom to travel, to speak and to associate. I also cherish the position I’m in that allows me to help others, to be a voice of the voiceless. And now it is rather possible that I will have to consider which of these I value the most. Or perhaps it’s a case of which of these is the best to continue to use for now so I can hold onto the others for when I need them. At the same time I have to consider if it is possible that I may not be able to ever regain back that which others which to take from me. And this time I know I’m not the only person in this situation.
A friend suggested we head for some tea and scones to a place that welcomed pets. So free I finished submitting some reports, I headed off home to gather up my four-footed companion and then off to wet my friend.
The eatery is a quaint, wee place, seating no more than twenty people as plenty of space is between tables allowing for four-footed companions. I confess I was apprehensive about taking my own four-footed wonder in simply because she is a high energy type of puppy. She likes to get up close and personal as she checks out every thing, whether it’s the first time she’s encounters it or the one hundredth time. But she was on her best behavior. And thankfully the place wasn’t overly busy so she was the only dog who came in.
Most of the patrons were seniors enjoying a late afternoon tea with some nibbles. Once we found a place to sit, the owner immediately brought out meds and a bowl of water for the four-footed one. My little dog who can act like a devil behaved like angel enjoying all the attention and strokes she was getting while my friend and I sorted out our tea and scone selection.
While we waited for our order to arrive my four-footed friend insisted upon visiting with every person in place. Fortunately she was welcomed at each table, lapping up the attention as if she deserved it. An elderly couple took to her spirited nature and applauded her many tricks. And she too took to them. So much so that when my order arrived she happily wandered back to the couple and visited with them for a bit before coming back.
The owner of the shop even brought my four-footed companion a wee treat for being such a good girl. She also assured me we were welcome any time we wanted to drop by. Most of her customers, she told my friend and I, are elderly and having dogs come in help bring smiles to those faces.
I must confess it is nice to be able to take my four-footed companion with me rather than having to leave her behind. It’s nice she is welcome and I’m happy she is able to bring joy to others. We are working on getting her better behaved so she can do more visits with the elderly because everyone needs some pet time.
Blessings come in all forms. Some are obvious, others are more hidden. A dear friend of Beloved’s was recently told she was being let go from her job. There simply was not enough to justify her position in this tight market. She loved her job, just not her employer.
In the past 6 months her company had brought in SixSigma consultants who were asked to streamline th business and cut costs. The first changes brought in was the reduction of administrative staff. Everyone was expected to pick up the slack with these positions being removed. At no extra pay. Oh and the extra time spent at work doing these things were to be considered voluntary. Of course these were just the first cuts. And the environment became negative and full of toxic behaviours.
letting her go got her out of the toxic environment much sooner than she otherwise would have been leaving the place. Since she was let go Beloved noticed that she seems to be able to smile more, even though she is in between jobs. Beloved also noticed her sense of Humor again.
She told him when it first happened she was somewhat devastated, but also felt a sense of lightness within herself. Like she could just let go of a weight she had been carrying. It helped, she told him, that she had money set aside just in case something like this happened.
It was then that Beloved told me he had been debating asking if we could find a way to help her out by letting her move into the house. There is enough space to be sure. It might be a bit weird though. But before he got the chance to ask, she told him that she was taking a much deserved trip abroad. To just think, recharge and move forward with her life as need be.
The real blessing in all of this is her attitude. Hopefully I will be as blessed when more adversity comes my way.
There are certain things that remind me of home like sunflowers with their heavy sunshine heads nodding in the breeze. Or the tiny violas that tend to grow in tight areas, like th cracks in walks. The smell of freshly cut grass warming under the sun also reminds me of home.
Any time it’s super hot and we get a brief, but heavy rainfall and then the sun comes out and the steam rises off the pavement I am reminded of home. The same as the gentle chill that comes with an early autumn or a warm autumn that becomes an Indian Summer, no matter where I go, these things bring back home for me.
They tug at my heart in a way, not painfully so. Just a gentle tug and reminder of earlier times and memories of people no longer with me. In some ways it allows me to bring these people back in my life and in other ways it allows me to be transported back home when I’m out and about in this big world.
So I filled my vases full of sunflowers I picked up today, found a comfortable spot of sunshine and allowed myself to drift back to moments I’ve shared and cherished back home. Later on I will mess around with trying to get the flavors just right in my rub for the ribs and transport myself somewhat back home again, if only for a little while.
Who ever said you can’t go back wasn’t exactly right, because you can. If only through memories.
So I’m getting old. And not just old the way we all age each day, each year. Old as in the dog stepped on my foot and gave me stress fractures. Old as in I’m unable to open certain bottles or tie my shoes at times.
Is it getting old? Nope not really. The reality is lupus, my medication to combat lupus, arthritis and such have and continue to wreck havoc with things I can or cannot due. But not always. And it isn’t hopeless. Actually it has taught me patience and humility. Simply because I am forced to ask for help and support during these times.
Lupus has introduced me to some wonderful people, people I otherwise would never have met. Amazing doctors, nurses, orderlies, pharmacists and so on. People who have made a career in caring for others, helping those who need help and sometimes won’t admit it.
Lupus has also introduced me to fellow lupus Warriors. Amazing women, men and children who handle this unpredictable illness with grace, fire and determination that encourages me when I need it most. These people have accepted me as is, get the word symptoms and such that come with this chronic illness and provide creative and helpful suggestions in managing the illness and staying true to myself.
So well May 10th may be World Lupus Day, every day is a challenge and opportunity to stretch and find a new flex strength I didn’t know I had.