Another runner’s story

What kind of mean joke is this?

Today has been one of those “Stuck in a muck” kind of days. You know when there is a list of things to do, and no matter how hard you try distraction keeps winning. The small chores are all done and the big ones remain untouched. This is the third time I have sat in the office / library with a goal in mind- WRITE SOMETHING!

I tried keeping to my home pattern schedule. Chores, dishes, cleaning, pets, exercise, lists, reading, visits, coffee moments. Each time I tried to go write, I fell flat. Dead space, dry air, empty thoughts. Some days, and most Mondays are my day to recover from the weekend. And that is what I have been doing.

So I popped another new book in the Talking Book Library. It’s about a runner. What kind of sick joke is this? I am plagued by them. Does God not know how much I would rather be fit and happy, then puffing on a plastic flexy tube filled with medicine for my bronchial tubes. This is just mean. But rather than get angry at the lack of concidence in these stories I will try to look for the lesson outside of the stupid marathoners. Really what is the percentage of people that actually love running?

In my family from the parents to siblings and extended spouses, there are about fifty people total if we add up all of my husbands family, and my family. Of all those only five of these people that I know of talk about running, lobe running, or sign up for charitable running functions. That would 10%. Then if I add up those with breathing issues that prevent such stressful exercise, there are at least as many prevented fromactually running. Why should I get three books in a row about runners then.

Just a moment of diversion.

While I really enjoy a good long therapy walk, running has only entered my thoughts a few times. I just can not seem to keep breathing when everything in me is being pounded through my heels into the pavement. Forget the running thing. Walking, now that’s at least normal. For me. Not for my dog. She wants to run everywhere.

So i am listening to the story and find that most stories are marked by how the main character handles grief and loss. Well, I really don’t want to go down that road today. So for me I’ll keep handling the loss of my “abilities” due to my failing eyesight, by being a stuck in the muck. Sitting and crocheting seems to work for now.

And typing out my thoughts as fast as I think them still seems to work also.

The sun is trying to shine. I made it through another rainy miserable humid asthma day. No running here.

Window kittens

A dose of Suga

Not that I am a cat lady, but sometimes holding that little ball of fluff is just the the dose of Suga that I need for the moment. So if a dose of sugar helps the medicine go down, as it did for Mary Poppins, then a moment of fingered fur helps the day go by for me too.

My husband is allergic. My daughters are allergic. My son-in-law- is allergic too. So on our acreage all the cats are “mousers.” That means they really only have one job. Keep me from ever discovering one of those awful mice creatures, and I will feed you scraps and kibbles daily. Most of the them haven’t even caught one.

Why Suga? Well, her mama cat’s name was Mooch. Mooch would never catch anything but a boot tip. She was always in the way while we walked. Mooch also lived up to the name. She took from all the others, cats and dogs, whatever she pleased as long as she could. Towards the end she began to be “clingy” towards people. She got into cars, delivery vehicles, vans, and pickups. If the door was open she was going to see if there was food or drink for the taking. Or maybe just a heated seat. She disappeared after her two kittens were old enough to wean. That’s when the little black furry started seeking my attention.l

While we had just adopted Honey into our lives, there wasn’t a cat on the place that I could even catch. Most of them are all black so there ability to hunt and be spooked easily seems appropriate. Honey decided to give this little girl her attention also, so I had to come up with a name for the one kitten that I could catch. Holding Honey on one side of the bench and the kitten on the other, the only name that I could come up with was Sugar. Since the cat is all black excepting the white star, I actually named that lump of Sugar on her chest. So Suga it is.

Since the family is all allergic, we have decided not to ever have a house cat. Confinement for cats requires so very much cleaning and is often not very healthy for the cat. It’s just my belief that a cat needs more freedom than a house offers. Others I know have a completely different feeling that this. But I live in the country with many outbuildings that are old and not tight. A cat is the best plan to keep other critters at bay.

My grandmother loved cats and always had many farm cats on her place. I do remember there being at least one pet cat that was allowed into the house. She often let that one winter in the cellar to keep the mice out of the stores. I remember sitting on the floor in front of the hot stove petting one of these cats or kittens. Sad to say it, but I am allergic also.

All that said, Suga is my favorite right now. She is now annoying like her mother. She will be picked up if I want to but otherwise keeps a bit of distance will all others. The only thing that annoys me is the relationship with the dog. Because they curl up together outside, Honey’s fur is not entirely “allergy-free.” Cuddly with the cat is another reason for figuring out how in the world I am going to bathe this six month old doodle.

A dose of Suga. A lump of Suga. I’ll drink black coffee if there’s a really sweet treat with it, but a little cream or a little sugar sure helps the black stuff go down. I’ll continue to enjoy my coffee with a little something in it. And I’ll smile when the cat jumps up on the grill outside the kitchen window, to keep me company while I do dishes, or cook a meal. Thankful for the little bundle of black fur and the little dose of Suga in my day.

Don’t look back

Lessons from a good boy

Today we said goodbye to a really good boy.  Seymour came to our house July fourth 2015.   He was a rescue dog that we found at a west river South Dakota animal rescue.  He had been caught in a snare and needed recovery time.  

Upon bringing him home, we had to learn all of his character traits and train his fear away.  It was amazing to watch him grow stable and helpful.  He wa such a good companion to me as I began my Greenhouse journey.  

He also learned the guide dog thing so quickly. But once he passed his “teenage years,” those running lungs expanded his chest size to the point that he no longer fit in my guide dog harness. The harness was for a 50-75 pound dog and Seymour weighed in at 95#! That was the same size as me. 

But as my eyesight continues to decline, some things just continue to be difficult. One of these chores is cleaning. And though Seymour was an exceptionally well-behaved housedog, my cleaning chores did increase with his presence here.  I get so dizzy while cleaning as I focus on a pinhole tunnel and suddenly the room has spun the opposite direction. Walls seem to move without my knowledge! 

So this past week has been a flurry of decision making. I saw an ad for a family looking for a house trained mature Labrador. It just seemed right to bless this family with such a good boy. 

Today we said goodbye. Seymour has been into giving hugs this past week. First it was to visitors, then he suddenly was giving us more hugs and also wanted to give his favorite neighbor a hug. It just seemed as if he knew he was saying goodbye. 

Or he just wanted to comfort. He is such a good hugger. 

We met the new family in a random parking lot. And that good boy didn’t even look back as he ventured off with them to the pet store to get some treats. 

If only the rest of us could take change so sweetly. The years flow to easily. The frustration at not being let-in on a change can make one unforgiving and frankly- cranky.  But change happens constantly. All around us the seasons change. Seasons that weather our faces just as readily as they weather our hearts. 

Take this lesson from a really good boy:
Don’t look back

Love those who need it

Live in the moment

Don’t hide in the house from rainy weather

Chase a cat if you feel like it

Give hugs freely

Have a good life Seymour! Enjoy your happy family!

Inside outside

“therefore encourage one another with these words.” I Thessalonians 4:18

Whether or not the weather cooperates is usually how outside gardens survive.  Farming and springtime become a constant weather watch in our neighborhood. There’s always the few who do things no matter what. But the seeds never lie. Frost that kills the cherry blossoms means one less pie. 

The other day I made it out to the gee-oh house just before the rain came pouring down.  “Guess I’ll be here for a little while or get soaked on the trek back to the shoe-box house.”  We spent the previous weekend re-sealing the joints and the polycarbonate glazing with more weather proof materials. So this week will be a test to see if we finally found the answer to the leakages.  Wind and rain, ice and water find their way through cracks of any size. Hopefully by the time we finish the outside–we’ll have an inside that is outside!

Finding therapy that works for our ailments can sometimes be more challenging than we expect. For some acupuncture helps.  Others turn to the essential oils.  Still others release, toxicity through sweating via sauna or excercise. I chose to go to my greenhouse. Sunshine provides me a tropical zone right in my own green field.

Suffering from pain and insomnia creates a cycle of physical pain that must have a checkpoint. I have full understanding that there are drugs-medicines that can aid my troubles.  A number of years ago though my husband decided to reward my once upon a time motherhood  nap time reading to my children by purchasing me an MP3 bible.  

When I was just nursing my firstborn child, my mother handed me a tiny Gideon New Testament. So I began reading to my children. When my second daughter arrived I had learned to balance my full scriptures award Bible from my own childhood on my arm and hand .  In that way I was able to read through the Bible and continue my own rapid reading schedule during her toddlerhood. It was during that timeframe that she claims I read through numbers and chronicle just to get her to fall asleep.  It was admittedly more successful than my later attempts to read Chronicles of Narnia for their bedtime story reading.  However, we all believe that Lennea’s abilities in remembering names might be gifted by God to her simply from these nursery days.  

My grandmother, the girls’ great-grandmother had a gifted memory also.  She could remember dates and birthdays like no one else! Although she did not pass this incredible memory on to me, her love for dried fruit has nevertheless been passed on.  Therefore when I studied the geodesic greenhouse and understood that I could host up to two tropical fruit trees in its space, I began begging for a fig tree.

Perhaps I wanted one so much because it’s delicate nature is one that I can really relate to. My temperature intolerance has led me speak out loud that I’m allergic to the cold.  It’s icy winds feel like knives slicing through my skin.  Because the anesthesia that they used on my first caesarian did not function as expected I can say with full clarity that I know what it feels like to have knives slice through my skin. It was traumatic. 

Recently we had a family meal with some extended family members.  During the meal my little nephew began his frequented mealtime temper tantrum.  Following this occasion we discussed the child’s feelings as “delicate.”  This reminded us of a classic psychologist’s movie Inside out  We recommend it for children and family’s who struggle with verbal expressions of feelings.  Learning to communicate at an early age one’s self-awareness is so important. 

It is in that spirit of self-preservation that I am sharing this with my readers. Sleepless nights are the trials of many that I know personally.  Whether turning to medicine, natural therapies, or prayer and Scrupture–know that this battle for sleep and adequate rest is not just yours alone.  Pain is part of this world we exist in and most likely will not  be conquered during this life. Finding hope in small things and in the bigger picture can help.  In the end it’s my faith in Christ and our eternal home that keeps me going.   

My crochet grandmother’s favorite book in the Bible was Thessalonians’s.  She had many verses underlined in the two part letter. This one after the description of  our future hope and home is one of my favorites.  Chapter four verse eighteen-

“Therefore encourage one another with these words.”