Tag Archives: choices

How Do I Say Goodbye to My Boy?

I know I haven’t written a new post for a while and I haven’t been reading or commenting on many blogs either. I have been very preoccupied and with good reason. My oldest fur-kid, Rudy, isn’t doing very well. He has diabetes and it has gone out of control. Last weekend he started having a lot of symptoms that pointed to high blood sugar levels. When I took him to the vet, the number was 653 (normal is around 100). In addition, his kidneys have been “compromised.” Not Good. I thought that I had lost him at that point and was trying to emotionally prepare myself, as if one can do that. The vet gave me a little hope by changing his diet. Although he told me not to buy any more insulin, he would give me some as I only have enough for about a week. When I asked how long before we would know if the diet was working, he said, “a week or two.” So, that means I could only have a week or two left with my boy.  IMG_0551

When I think back on the 12 years we have had together, there have been so many good times! He has been my “Beggaboy,” my “Ruddabegga.” He has helped me through some very dark times in my life and been there for me when no one else has. He has made it through three moves and has hung in there with me through numerous relationships (despite trying to tell me that one in particular was disastrous for us!) He has stuck by me despite my bringing two puppies into our lives and one very abused adult dog. He really doesn’t like puppies! And no matter what I threw at him, he has smiled through it all and continues as my boy; “da man of da house!” Someone said to me: “Yeah the little buggers break your heart when they leave you.” My response: “Yeah they do, but I wouldn’t trade the last 12 years with him for anything.”

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How do say goodbye? I have no idea. I know that I will have to. I don’t know if it will be this week or next or maybe I will have more time with him. In any case, I know that the time is coming faster than I want it to. Until then, I will love him and spend ALL my time with him. I will stay by his side and have no regrets about not being with him. I will not let him suffer. I will not make him stay when his quality of life is gone, for that would be selfish on my part. I do not want that for him. Hell, I don’t want that for me! For there is no greater love than what a dog has for his human, and Rudy has loved me far better than I could ever have loved him. Now it is my turn to fix that, I will not let him down. I will love him as he has loved me.

Even though it will be one of the hardest things I will ever have to do, when it is time I will say goodbye. I will hold him in my arms so that he knows he I love him as he takes his last breath. And I will keep him in my heart always. For that is what he would do for me. It is what he has done for me.

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Reclusive or Selective: The Semantic Game

I’ve told myself that I am not becoming reclusive; I am just more selective about what I do. I am not sure if I am just playing a semantic game with myself, but I am sure that my activities are changing.  I no longer log on to Facebook daily, but I do try to check in at least weekly to keep up with the people I talk to via messages.  I just don’t see much value in all the posts, seems like people put the silliest stuff on there.  I mean I guess it’s important to someone what you had for dinner, just not so much to me.  I also don’t tweet, don’t Pin anything nor am I linked in to anyone.  I really don’t spend that much time surfing any more either.  If there is something I need or want to know, I can usually find it with a quick search, read the articles and be done in fifteen or twenty minutes.   I also don’t go out as much as I used to.  I am quite content to stay in my house with my fur-kids. And they seem to get quite upset when I leave them.  Actually, it is getting hard to get me out of my house, not because I am afraid to leave, rather because I am just so comfortable here.  And I am always concerned that I will have to leave because of pain and cause disruption in the activity.  This causes me to stay home a lot also.

I did go “out” over this past weekend, however, and it was an interesting experience.  The “plan” was to go to a street dance that was a local fundraiser for the downtown district where I live.  Of course it was raining a lot, so they moved the party inside.  And they eliminated all the food vendors.  That meant going out to dinner, which we did and it was lovely!  The food was great, the company wonderful and the conversation fun.  Then to the “club” where the party was, which pointed out to me that it had been a long time since I have been in a club and I am getting old.  Wow, was it loud in there!  It didn’t take me long to re-acclimate myself and I found myself loving it! One of my favorite things to do is to “people watch” and there was the perfect spot above the main floor to do just that.  And the band, who were very good, was in the other room so they weren’t so loud! As a bonus, I had a fascinating conversation about a myriad of topics with a very cool woman.  I am glad that despite my desire to stay home, I went and had a great time. I was not able to complete the evening this weekend, as I came home early due to “wearing out,” but the going out was a good thing.

Being selective about what I do is a good thing, and I will continue.  Unfortunately, my stamina is not what it was and I cannot do all the things I’d like.  So I will have to make choices just like everyone else, even if mine are a little more limited.  Looking at the possibilities as though there are possibilities will make a huge difference in my choices.  

The Consequence of Fear

So much for my “Just Be” theme of the year.

I think the Universe is giving a me Giant Push which is getting stronger and stronger.  I, of course, have not recognized it until now.  I am a bit slow in these things.  I tend to be the complacent type–no that’s not right either.  I am the one who gets really excited about doing something, so I get all kinds of “stuff” so I can start it; which I do, then I quit and everything just sits there.  I then kick myself for spending bunch of money for something I am once again not using; starting and quitting something again; and, feeling like I am never going to accomplish anything.  My next move, you ask?  I hit the couch, turn on the “I don;t have to think about it” electronic box, pull out the electronic game pad so I really don’t have to think and I can zone out for days.

Of course, that is not the only reason for this lay on the couch behavior. Usually it is because of the pain being bad enough that I just can’t function that day.  Sometimes it is because the depression has taken over and I just don’t care that day.  And sometimes it is because I am running away from feeling as if I give up on the things I want to do, without ever really trying to do them.  I’ve never thought of myself as a quitter before, at least not until I began writing the last sentence.  I really don’t like it.  Feels quite yucky, for lack of a better term.  Wow, I have to change that one.

One thing that I have not quit and will not give up on is writing.  A couple of weeks ago I was away from home and did not have any information about the book I have been working on with me, but I did have my laptop with me.  So, I started typing about my life, thinking it would be more cathartic than anything.  I really didn’t intend for it to turn into anything I would ever consider publishing.  It seems that the Universe may have other plans. The most interesting ideas about my writing comes to me around 1:30 AM, so I have learned to keep a notebook, flashlight, pencil and my phone (it takes dictation) next to my bed every night.  Last week, I “received” information about what I thought was my cathartic writing.  I really don’t want to go into all the details here, but the title I was “given” was “The Consequence of Fear.”  I then “received” reminders of all the things I didn’t do in my life, that I wanted to do, because I was too afraid to do them.  The list was much longer than I remembered.  It was also very sad.

Choices. I have had many to make and I don’t think I’ve always done such a good job at making them.  I know:  I did what I did and I can’t change anything.  I’ve learned from the decisions I’ve made and there is no use in looking backwards.  Except, to use what I see to make different choices now.  To overcome the fear when given the opportunity to make a choice.  To do something different.  To step outside of my comfort zone and do things differently.  To work on that Bucket List!  It is now or never, I suppose.  After all, “You have to have some fun every day, who knows if you will even have tomorrow.” This is a statement made by my great-niece recently, that has resonated with me ever since she said it.  She is wise beyond her years!

Getting back to that Giant Push I am feeling.  Things are changing, shifting in my life.  I feel disconnected from people I know, like I am being told “it’s time to get out there and do new things, meet new people.”  This is really tough for an introvert, especially one who has isolated herself for the past three years. I also have to be cognizant of my health concerns, financial concerns and physical abilities.  Of course, I also have to be aware of using these as excuses too.  They have been a convenient way to explain away my isolation.  Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to get ill.  I was exposed to pneumonia in May; I got it the first of June and I am still dealing with the effects of it at the end of July.  Health issues are a valid concern.  Yet the Push is getting stronger, no doubt about it.  Soon it will not be something I can ignore.  I don’t want to ignore it anymore.  I want to do some of those things that I have avoided.  It all comes down to the choice–let the fear rule or overcome it!

 

External vs Internal: Does It Really Matter?

There have not been many external events happening recently, unless you count the illness stuff and I really don’t want to.  Or you count the recovery from illness, which is a bit better to focus on, I guess.  Other than that there has just been a lot of sleeping, watching TV and reading, which I guess does fall into that recovery category.  Internally, however, things are beginning to shift again.  I am feeling the need to get out of the house, not for purely social reasons, although those are important enough, but also for observational reasons.  I need to be observing life–people, places and things–so that I can write.  And I am writing again, oh, I guess that is an external change.  It feels so internal to me that I don’t notice when words actually leave my head and get put on paper…well, on the computer screen.  It is especially nice when they STAY on the screen after I put them there.  Yes, I “lost” two hours of writing the other day, just gone to great abyss of…wherever that shit goes when it goes somewhere!  The important fact here is that it is gone…bye-bye…see ya (NOT).  That was the bad news.  The other bad news is that I can’t just rewrite it, those words came once, not sure they will come again, although I will try.  The good news, I spent yesterday setting up a new writing system (another external change)! So hopefully that won’t happen ever again.  I hope.  At least not this week.  Or this month.  Or this year.

So, I am excited about today because I get to spend it writing.  I really hope the words come.  If not it doesn’t matter.  I have a new mantra…Keep My Butt In The Chair! I say it to myself a lot now.  It is the only way that I am ever going to finish anything! It is the only way that anyone ever finishes anything.  I know I don’t have a lot of stamina and I can’t stay in that chair for long, but I have to give it a try.  You know, one hour of writing, two hours of napping, one hour of writing, two hours of napping, etc.  That is about how life goes, no matter what I try to do.  And somewhere I will slip in my “observation” time.  It will happen.  I just have to keep my motivation and my dream in front of me.  And the other negative crap, self-defeating thoughts, in that great abyss of…

I am also finding that the balance is hard.  The amount of time “required” being alone so that I can gather my thoughts so I am able put words together into a story, along with not being so isolated that I forget how to interact with people.  It becomes easier and easier to become reclusive.  I do miss laughing though!  I find I don’t laugh anymore.  I haven’t for a long time.  And I miss it more and more.  I realize now, that even when I find something funny, I have a hard time laughing at it.  I wonder, is laughing a skill that one learns and forgets?  Or is laughing something that, with enough pain, too difficult to bring back?  Either way, I want it back!  I love to laugh…or at least I used to!  I used humor at work all the time, I was known for it and it worked! I do not know how to get it back, but I do know I am going to work at it.

It seems I’ve made a list for myself:  Keep my butt in the chair; Make observation time; Keep my dream in front of me; Find the balance; Re-learn how to laugh again.

Okay, I’m exhausted just looking at the list!   Is it nap time, yet?

Changing Focus

I did not write last week, which means it was the first week that I did not make my goal.

Yesterday, I found out I have another infection, which is common with Rheumatoid Arthritis and Psoriatic Arthritis, even if this one is a bit more serious.

The curious thing about both of these things:  neither of them has caused me to want quit.  That would be my usual response.  If I set a goal for myself and I do not meet it, I immediately see it as failure and I move on to the next thing.  Hence, blogging would be history for me at this point.  Yet, here I am wanting to create another post.  And the health thing would have caused me to curl up in a ball and start my own, private pity party.  Not today though. Interesting. Even to me.

When I woke up this morning, I had to do my usual, “what day of the week is this,” routine.  It’s hard to keep track sometimes.  Then, instead of thinking,”what am I going to do today,” my thoughts ran to; “gosh, I’ve got to get some things done today!”  There is always a list, no matter how “quiet” you think your life is, there is always a list.  Maybe if I didn’t have a house, or if I didn’t have dogs, or I didn’t have… put in anything you’d like, but then I’d have to add, maybe if I wasn’t alive!

I recently read Anna Quindlen’s book “A Short Guide to a Happy Life.”  It actually started as a commencement address she was to give at Villanova University (they canceled it because of protests).  As of my first reading of the book, I think these things change as we reread things, the premise was: In order to have happiness you had to have a life! Seems like a pretty straightforward idea, until I thought about it and realized that a lot of my depression centered around my not having a life.  Oh, I live.  And considering everything, I live in a blessed way.  But to have a life, one must live differently.

There will always be limitations that I will have to deal with,  just as everyone does.  Financial, physical, emotional, spiritual, psychological, the list could go on and on.  Everyone has them.  I am no different from anyone else.  I just have to decide that I can have a life even though I can’t do all the things I might want to do.  I have to find those things that I can do, to make a life; to find my happiness.  No one can help me be happy, nor can anyone help me to make a life (although there have been a few who have helped me to live recently).  I have to own my life and my happiness; I have to take responsibility for it.  I have to stop looking back and wondering “why,” and start looking forward and thinking “WOW!”  I have to realign my lens, so that I can focus more clearly on what is in front of me and around me now. I have never seen a picture dated today but taken of something that happened in the past. Pictures of the past are always faded with time.

Will a change in focus be easy? Probably not all the time, but I am going to give it a valiant try!  I have learned in the past few weeks that focusing on what you want, does not make it happen; focusing on what you have, tends to bring it closer to you.  Lamenting what you have lost only brings more pain; while recognizing all the beauty that is around you, brings more joy.

I am back on track with my goal of writing a blog once a week and I will not quit just because I missed a week.  After all, I have pretty nasty infection that was not being treated until yesterday, I think I can cut myself some slack on that one.  Another thing I never did before! Hmmm……. And the infection will heal and I will go back to dealing with the Rheumatoid and Psoriatic Arthritis again, without the infection.  It will be okay.

Most importantly I will follow “A Short Guide to a Happy Life” and go out and find one, just as soon as this infection clears up and I can.  And then I will be able to say “WOW!”

Getting Back on My Path to “Just Be”

I admit the past week has been a bit “rough” on my theme of the year.  I have struggled to “Just Be.”  One of those “things” happened that just hits you in the gut and leaves you looking around saying “what the hell; where in the hell did that come from; and did that really just happen?”  We’ve all had them, I know I’ve had them more than once.  This one isn’t random and is personal.  It has hurt me in ways I thought I had shut down years ago.  Guess not.  I still don’t want to, even now.  I can’t go into details, as it would causer even more shit problems.  Let’s just say that I was accused, since I was never given a chance to discuss anything, of saying things I did not say and attempting to break up relationships that are very important to me.  And it was done by someone I felt I was close to and could trust.  There be the kicker.  I don’t care so much about being accused of saying things I didn’t say, we all get that, all the time.  However, breaking up relationships that are important to me, by this person, is incredulous.

Needless to say, my ability to “Just Be” through out this has not been stalwart.  I have been angry, sad and hurt.  I have retreated and haven’t been able to reach out my support systems.  I allowed this person to access my self-esteem, despite my brain telling me repeatedly, that what  is being said is false and is a reflection on them, NOT on me.  I have been able to use my brain to be rational about the entire situation.  I have NOT been able to reconcile my emotions.  They are just not there.  Oh, there have been glimpses when my emotions and my brain are in sync.  Like now.  I just never know how long this will last.  But the ability to “Just Be” and let whatever happen’ that has not even occurred to me, at least, until I opened my blog this morning.

Something in me clicked when I read Holistic Wayfarer’s comment about Lessons of My Tree-Part 2. (And that you for that!) I realized how far away I have traveled from my path. In just an instant!  I realized that we are all given moments that will lead us away from or to we are going.  We just have to decide which we want to notice.  We have to make choices everyday of staying true to our Self or going down different path.  I read so often about people trying to “find their way,” and I believe that this is all we are all trying to do.  Find our way to lead a “better” life: for some that is in the now, for others it is about an afterlife and some are trying to live better now for their next life.  Whatever the reason, we all have a path to follow. The problem is when one person decides that another person cannot be “allowed” to live their path. So they interfere.  Whether that be globally, nationally, or individually; taking away someone’s choice to live the life they have chosen results in conflict, of not allowing someone to follow their path.

So as I reflect today about my path and my desire to “Just Be,” I realize that I cannot change anything or anyone but me.  My response, my attitude and my behavior is all I have control over  (at least on a good day).  So for today, I will “Just Be.”  I will take things as they come and let them go.  I will learn what I can and be the best that I can.  I won’t always get it right, at least I have learned that much.  I will do the best that I can in that moment, though.  I will do better than I did yesterday, for I am different today; I have learned something, just as I do everyday!

One of my favorite quotes is from Mr. Rogers, and I need to remember it more often:

 “It’s a wonderful day in the neighborhood!”

It WILL be in mine and, I WISH for you that it is in yours!

Responsible for Everything???

So, I’m perusing Facebook this morning and come across the “You are 100% Responsible for your Life” quote.  Now I know that. Everyone knows that, okay how about everyone should know that! But today it hit me: Holy Shit, I am responsible for everything!!! Like EVERYTHING! I’m ok with being responsible for my choices…but damn it, I don’t want to be responsible for EVERYTHING!!!  Like the house and all of its “inner workings.”  I don’t think the house is going to be responsible for itself! I mean, has your furnace ever quit, and the house just picked up the phone, called the repairman and paid the bill??? And then there is the car and its “inner parts.”  There are just too many of them and ONCE AGAIN, I don’t the car will decide when it is having “issues” and work to resolve them! And the bank account…do you think that just once, one time…is that too much to ask…that just once it could take responsibility for itself!  That it could watch its balance and make sure that it is not overdrawn.  Nope, that is way too much to ask! 

So it is all on me…100% responsibility for myself is feeling more and more overwhelming! No wonder people don’t like taking responsibility for themselves…this is scary shit!