Monday, March 30, 2009


Days pass and times change, it seems as if only yesterday happened, but yet it is now almost five years later. Sometimes time seemingly stands still. I know it does seem to do just that for my high school senior. She is counting the days minutes and hours until she is in a different stage of her life. I remember doing the same thing, but for me the waiting was more fun, much less stress, and a time to figure a few things out.

Sometimes I think this can be so painful as it is for her, her unusual circumstances at school have made things so much more difficult. Just as the unusual medical circumstances that have happened in my life. Both of us are so similar, both of us are learning to be tougher, both of us are unwilling to settle for what we don't deserve.

Respect, care, compassion, and more I am so glad that she knows that these things are mandatory to expect, and to share. I sometimes will find that she forgets this. For the most part she stays true to herself. I wonder, if desperation would fall upon her and if she would be strong enough to make it through what ever would be hanging the dark cloud over her.

I have been told that I am too cheery, I always am looking for the best. I frustrate Jason by the answers to his questions. He will ask me how I am doing, he can tell when I hurt. He asks me this already knowing that I am hurting, then wants me to verbally validate what he is already seeing my body and eyes present. He is frustrated by my lack of brut honesty on the subject. I most commonly have answered his question with an I doing better than I was, or an I am alright.

These answers have become a huge frustration for him. I don't understand why he needs my verbal validation for what he already knows to be true. My perspective and my focus is and has been to stay mentally healthy. To not go out and try to kill myself, to make it through the day, to really focus on what good things I have instead of the pain that I feel all of the time. For me being better than I was is good. If I can hear myself say that I am alright, that I am better than I was, these things don't seem so bad.

I can understand his frustration, really I can. Looking at me he, and everyone else I guess can tell that there is something wrong with me. I can too I guess if I were to look in the mirror when I have gotten worn out from the pain. I don't have any sparkle to my eyes, my brows sink in to my eyes, I loose color, not that I had that much to begin with, my posture is shifted, and I have difficulty moving, standing or doing anything. Just the speed of my thinking, my clarity, and my movement each alone could tell someone.

Many times the problem is not only that I don't want to hear myself say that I am myserable, that the pain is so intense that I can hardly stand it, but that I am so tired, and so foggy, that my mind has actually blocked the pain from the front of my thinking. When prompted, for a more complete and serious answer, in which I take a few moments to delebriate and assess my condition, this fog will subside, and the reality of the pain will begin to take hold.

I know that most people aren't able to do this, I am very lucky that I have had the mental blocking skills already developed to some degree to help me deal with this. Prior to the day of my auto accident where the very old man took his time to turn to look from side to side to check the traffic, where his foot got ahead of his eyes, and jetted out in front of my little red Mary Kay car. I had already developed these skills to deal with the PTSD that I had/have.

It does become a detriment however, I have found. I do know that since my auto accident, I can no longer remember peoples names with ease. There faces or names if seen will cause me to stop, but the clarity that was once there before, is gone. I had worked hard to develop the skill of remembering people's names, and where I knew them from. I don't have that anymore, I am starting over.

I see the frustration in peoples faces when they realize that I don't remember them. How do you explain in five seconds or less that I was in an accident...blah blah blah... GRRR! It is so frustrating for me not because of the loss of the skill. But the skill provided a validation to those around me, the people that I met, wheather briefly, or had a major interaction with, that they were important to me. How many times do you go through your day, with no validation of importance, no acknowlegement that you actually mean something to someone. That you are more than a number, that you are worthy, and treasured.

It was a skill that I had worked hard to perfect, that gave a gift larger than you can hold. I loved making those who were with in contact to whatever degree with me that they were indeed important. I knew this from many years of being a discounted person, a person who others saw no real value in what I did. I have never been a person with one of THOSE jobs, one of THOSE degree's one of THOSE types of social standing.

I have been around many of those people, those people make up a portion of my friends today. My friends may have THOSE things, but they see ME! They are around me because of how I have made them feel, because I see them. I don't see what they do, or what they have. If they lost it all, I wouldn't go away. These are the people that are still with me through this crazyness. They are the type of people you want in your life.

While being a waitress, being the shoe shine girl, being a farm hand, fast food worker, and more, I learned that many people saw you as what you did, not for who you were. Their mistake. I could feel the invaidation, that is the type of feeling that can sink a person's soul. It frustrated mine, it pushed me, not to be the type of person who had to have all of that to feel alright about myself, but to be strong enough that other's perceptions would never cloud my self worth. I hope for my high school senior's sake that she can keep a strong sense of value and hold it close, while encouraging and validating others. She too knows what it feels like to be a discounted person.

A quote by Frank Sinatra shared tonight on the David Letterman show, by a friend of his, and I paraphrase, "If you own something that you can not give away, then you do not own it, it is the one that owns you." If a person feels as if they are of value, but keeps it to themselves, uses it for themselves, than, really do they have value? I wonder.

Going through this receient recovery period has been difficult to retain this I must say, but through guarding what I say, what I spend my days focused on, and making the most of what I have each moment, this has been what keeps me going. I've got lots of blessings in my life. One of the greatest blessings is laying beside me with his hand on my knee.

I hope for her sake and the sake of those around her that she holds on to what is dear to her by sharing all she can to benefit those around her. My greatest friends have this gift too! I love being around them, not for the degree's that they hold, or the money that they earn, or the club that they belong to. I love being around them because I can help them and they can help me, we are there for each other, and while acknowledging flaws choose to look at each other's gifts.

I am blessed! Beyond belief, I am better than I was!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

FeELinG gOoD!

As I sit here and begin to write, my thoughts wonder to the events over the past almost month it feels since I last wrote. While I am definately not as angry as was at people's stupidity, other things have been frustrating. Which causes me much hesitation when I consider writing more of my feelings down in this blog.

Needing to deal with things in an appropriate matter, sometimes time is able to help give perspective and the ability to add calming sense to certain situations. These past few weeks calming influences seem to have been the key for everyone in my household. We have had to search and search to remain calm at times.

I know that so many people have things so much worse. I realize too that we have been through much worse, although what makes difficulties easier to get through is the hope that the next situation will be an improvement. Sometimes we find the next thing to be just as challenging if not more, and we again hope for something better. The hotter the fire the stronger the steel. I don't know who said that but I think that it definately applies to my relationship with Jason.

We sure seem to have gone through allot of fire but each time we go through a challenge we seem to come out stronger. I am so grateful for that.

In my last post I had mentioned Jason's difficulty with Luka in public situations. I wrote about how I percieved his feelings to be on that subject. I am so glad I did, we were able to have a great conversation on the subject and things actually worked out better for it. Of course all of the things I am writing about are my feelings and my perspective. It doesn't always or even often match others perspectives and feelings on the same or even similar subjects. I am alright with that. I am also open to listening in most cases especially after I have had some time to become calm about a particular situation. I love different opinions and perspectives, while I sometimes will never agree, I appriciate others and still find value in difference.

It seems lately that Dr's visits are at the top of the adjenda lately. These visits can sure drain the day's time away. Our teenager has appointments for her teeth as well as Dr visits, and college visits, as well as she needs some therapy visits in the near future as well. Jason has started the some of his own, and mine a lovely 4-5 appointments each week are just enough to make a person MAD! We catch ourselves comming and going. How is their time for everything.

Tomorrow's day includes a dental appointment for me, then a college visit for her, then school for her, then post office for me to mail things, and time for my therapy excersizes, then off to the dentist for her, while Jason scoots off to a teaching job that evening. Gikes! I know that everyone else has this crazyness in their lives as well. Should life really be like this? I wonder.

I've started a project that I am happy to be working on. Having worked in my past at a children's camp, I now volunteer occasionally for this camp, I have volunteered for them for years now with various projects, most of which are very fun, some are moderately fun, and some just need to be done. The latest project that I have picked up is enjoyable for sure. It is really allot of busy work and research. I am having a good time with it, going through the details slowly and compiling all of the needed information. It is something I've found that I am quite good at, and that I really enjoy doing. It makes it even better that I can do this all from my home in my bed when I feel good or when I feel kinda bad.

I love having something else to focus on, that keeps my mind off of everything else that I have no control over. The fact that this information will fill a need and be helpful for others really makes me feel well also. A sense of accomplishment, is just wonderful. Just like making a really nice meal and watching those eating it enjoy it, or dropping a note to someone going through a rough time to let them know that they are in my thoughts.

I am reminded constantly that my life is good. I am reminded for all of the good things in my life, and there are many that there are those who don't have nearly as many good things in theirs. I have several friends who have always had difficult physical situations, some who are just receintly as I have been receintly having difficult physical situations, and those who are going through emotional, and financial difficulties currently or who have in the past. Usually these things seem to go hand in hand if you have one you will most certainly have two or three of them all at one time. Managing just one of them can be a full time job, while handling all three it sometimes feels as if you were never going to survive it.

Hearing from a friend today reminded me that while we are so involved in things that are going on in our own lives, that there are those around us, near or distantly, who are suffering, wondering how they will ever be able to make it through another moment. We've been there. I heard those thoughts today from a friend in an email that I received. He is going through a much more difficult time than we've gone through, his road will be harder, and longet, there are small children involved, as well as a very injured wife. He sounded as if he just needed someone to care, some one to notice, someone to talk to. Nothing really more than that, not asking for any of his responsiblities to be taken away or lessened, however I am sure that would be accepted. But just asking for someone to understand, someone to care. Reaching out for something to hold on to hope for one more day. It isn't a good place to be in.

The better place to be in is the person who takes the time to say Hey, I hear you, I see you, I am praying for you. If you are a person who doesn't have much time, but has resourses, then a certificate for pizza or a casserole, or a monitary gift would be handy for this person. If you have time but no resourses, then the offer of a shoulder to cry on, an afternoon of visiting or helping so someone else can have some time away from helping, or watching kids is a great way to share.

We've been so lucky to be beneficairies of some of these same gifts. Believe it or not they all equal the same. It doesn't matter how much time, or money or how big the gift or how small, they all equal the same. They all say the same thing. They all give the receiver the same message, that some one is here for them, someone noticed, someone cares.

I am glad that I took the time to write to this person, I will be writing again soon as well. It feels great for me to be able to do that. For me to think of someone else. I love doing that. It makes me feel so good.

Being that it is almost 1am I really need to get to bed. I have a busy day tomorrow and I am determined to pack as much in as I can. Maybe I will even be able to drive agian soon. I am holding out hope.

So for now goodnight.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

NoT WaNtiNg tO...

This post might touch some nerves, it isn't intended to make anyone else upset, none of my posts are. I do write these things to get them out of my head, and to give perspective to those in my life what I am going through so they can understand me better. I love having all of my friends family and clients in my life.

Well for about two weeks now I have been in hell, I haven't felt much like writing, just when I would think I was getting better or back on track, my body would once again rebel. No migraines, well, not many at least, mostly just major body aches and pains. I really have been avoiding my blog. It isn't that I have been unhappy, I mean I am but really no more than usual, but the pain has once again become so intense some days that it is all I can do to get to the bathroom from bed. My pain medication is giving me nausea, taking away some of the pain and then adding the upset feeling is not my idea of a good time.

Hot sweats, throwing up and major body pain are really things that I could do with out. Now, if it were the flu then fine, but this was not the flu. The past couple of days have been better, I have started physical therapy with a new therapist, Kristi. I think that what she has me working on will help. I really hope I can get some of this under control. I am excited because, she has trained with a previous therapist that I had, that helped me allot, but he moved. She knows the same techniques, and then also incorporates some other things as well. My massage therapist also coordinates what he does with her, as he has also attended some of the same training, while his focus is different, each therapy reinforces the other. My massage is not going to help me get stronger, but it is helping me rid my body of muscle spasms each week. For me they are both worth their weight in gold.

I wish I could find something to help me feel the pain less, with out making me queezy. I can become ill all on my own with my migraines, I don't need a pill to make me feel ill. Geesh!

I am also super upset about a recent visit to the state agency that helps people with disabilities, become educated, and help find employment. Jason and I went in for the appointment. The person who was assigned to me, listened to my story, and then proceeded to share that she won't be able to help me. That in her opinion I am to disabled to work. That no one would hire someone like me, and that the only suggestion that she had for me was some of those letter stuffing jobs you find in the newspaper. She then proceeded to tell me that she did not know if those jobs really paid you much or not.

OMG~ FOR REAL??? Lady, come on, I know I am not ready to go to work at this moment, but I will be, I might not be able to do something full time, but I can do something more than stuff envelopes. Having not been able to do as much Mary Kay as I'd like, and living in the small town where I live, people don't flock to my door. I live in a location that none of my clients really travel past, and would have to make a special trip to come see me. I think the day will come, when we will either move, or something so I can really have access to my clients, and provide them with better service.

I am very capable of doing makeovers, and servicing my clients. While I can't do it like I did, I can still do a great job. Ok, so I know some of you reading are my clients, and if you are headed this direction, please let me know, I would love to let you play with my Mary Kay!! If you want me to go to you, let me know that too, YES it is possible! Jason will drive me, if I plan ahead. 17 years of doing this, thank goodness, I could do it with my eyes shut. I am just not as mobile as I was.

Of course there is the Luka issue. Yes, I do know that he is allowed by law to enter any public business or place. However, people's homes are private. So in order for me to come to you special arangements need to be made. You will need to let me know if bringing Luka with me is alright. Or we may need to meet at a more public location in some cases. I may also need assistance carrying all of my supplies inside as well as help filling any orders as these things may demand more than I am able to do.

Even if I were able to drive, carrying my bags in and out of different locations, the stairs up and down in and out of people's homes, and other variables have made things in my business different. For these reasons I haven't been doing my Mary Kay business as much.

The thing last thing that's been bugging me is that many people are so rude and mean. Or just plain ignorant. I discovered this when our friend Joy and her family lived with us for a year. Joy is deaf, dealing with people for her is a very trying ordeal. Very few people were ever really nice to her, most just tollerated her, and some were completely put off by her disablity, some including her own family. Jason and I had the opportunity when we were with her, to call people out on their rude behavior, to educate those she dealt with to be nice and patient, and to thank all of the people who treated her well. Professionals in offices, people on the street, phone calls she would make, and people in the schools you just really wouldn't believe that these people would treat her the worst.

Joy is the most awesome person, she is talented, warm, giving, timely, creative, interesting, thoughtful, tidy, beautiful, smart and more. I understand that she may be harder to get to know or to communicate with than hearing people, but she still deserves the same amount of respect and concideration as everyone else. She does nothing to be treated rudely, and she always is prepared and goes out of her way to make things as simple as possible.

Having watched her deal with things, as I know she has for her whole life, she is very consistant, with what she does. That way she will deal with the same people over and over again whom she has found to be nice and cooperative. She limits her life to the safer areas. I so understand that.

I hate going in to new stores. I hate it! I never know if someone is going to be rude or uneducated about people with illnesses or disablities. Before I got Luka it would even happen, I would go somewhere, and be perfectly normal looking and ask for help with a bag or ask for help getting something off the shelf in a store. I would explain that I am not able to do it myself. They would treat me as if I was the laziest, person, roll their eyes, make me feel bad by making some smart ass comment...

As bad as it was before, it is worse now, I walk in to business's now with Luka by my side, he is wearing his vest, which he isn't even required by law to do. People will be having an attitude immediately with a nasty voice tell me you can't have dogs in here, you need to leave... or just stare at us and not seat us pretend as if we aren't there, some people in these places come up and say is that your seeing eye dog? While they are looking me straight in the eye, and have seen me looking around, they don't even bother to look at his vest let alone read it. Yes, it is oh so convenient to load up my dog, unload my dog, take my dog to pee and poop, carry the bags to pick up the poop, carry water for him, and negotiate isles in stores with him, not to mention the stares you get from the other patrons wondering what is wrong with you, yeah this is so fun for me to do drag my 110lb doberman out in the cold the snow the heat the rain. GET REAL! NO one in their right mind would go through all of this just to bring their dog with them where ever they would want to go, unless there was a legit reason for it. And if they did, at least take the time to look and see if the dog has a vest on it and READ IT!

Man people are stupid! I grew up on a farm, in the middle of no where, and I knew this... what's your excuse.

The one good thing about this is that I have been saving money. Yep! Businesses that do this to me are not getting my money! And I would bet they have lost more business than mine in some cases as there have been other customers around in many of the occasions that have witnessed these peoples illegeal, not to mention, rude behavior. Word will get around, and with everyone tightening their belts, I would think these places would be looking for all of the business they can get coming through their door, not be chasing it out.

Yes, I know that I would have been able to call the police and get these places in legal trouble, but really is it worth it? Not to me, who wants to shop in a place that the owner, or employees are so nasty, I don't ever intend to set foot in their door again. Did you know that you can buy anything online and have it delivered to your door?

That is my newest plan, I really understand why my friend Joy, as well as so many other people with illness and disablities aren't seen in public much. It is too hard. For me to get upset, angry, embarassed, or just fed up, takes all of my energy away from me, I don't have that much anyway, and why should I subject myself to that? I can have a perfectly good day in a safer environment.

One of my favorite movies is Pretty Woman. I love the scene when she walks into the fancy store looking all hookeree, and they tell her to leave that they won't sell her anything, then she walks back in the store looking wealthy hands full of other designers bags and says REMEMBER ME??? Big mistake BIG, HUGE... and walks back out with their mouths agape! Maybe I will do that to those stupid places. I am making a list!

Jason even hates walking into places with Luka and I, he hates the stares that he gets, when people look at him and wonder what's wrong with both of us, because if there is something wrong with me there has got to be something wrong with him to. The stares of adults who look at you then turn like you are contageous. The kids are great! Kids almost always are, and if they aren't well, lots of people have had these same stares when their child is misbehaving in public, and in most cases it has nothing to do with the parents not doing things well, it has to do with the child and how they are developing their own personalities.

Jason is finding that it is easier to to places on his own, that bring me along. The explanation is hard wherever we go. The underlying anger of what has happened over four and a half years ago, and what has happened to me and us as a result. He does not talk about it, if you ask him about it you will get a short response and then a change of subject. I don't know if he is embarrassed on top of angry but I do know that this is not the life he chose to be living. He is choosing to live it with me, through better and worse, but I wonder frequently how much more of this he can take.

Watching the pain in his eyes each day, watching the lack of a life, suck the life right out of my once energetic husband is so painful, he is always there for me when I am needing him, and I am not able to be there for him. I can't go to the home shows that he loves to walk through, I get to tired. I can't do all the things we used to do together, as the activity may hurt me worse. My life has become the life of prevention and protection don't do anything that will cause me to be worse the next day, don't do anything where I might fall, don't do anything where someone might bump into me, don't sit up to long, don't, don't, don't, don't......

How much of that can some one live with? I wonder how much of that I can live with. I always am waiting for tomorrow, because its gotta be better than today! I look forward to the hope of someday. Since I am not able to live like I want to today, maybe someday, maybe tomorrow. So each day I wake up with the hope of living. I wonder for myself how much longer I am going to be able to do that.

I can't imagine with what I see in Jason's eyes, how much more of this he can. It is breaking my heart.

I have had quite the time lately physically, as well as emotionally, I have been finding many good people and businesses too, I will talk about that aspect later. I love my man, I am thankful for my service dog Luka, and I am proud of myself that I have made it this far, it would have been much easier to have given up.