Category Archives: Self Care

Covering Gpa’s Stripes

It bothers my daughter that there are marks on the walls.  Gpa’s chair has marked the kitchen.  His wheelchair has scarred the hall and the bathroom.

They remind me of Gpa.  I’m not in a hurry to cover them up.

However, she mentioned it again. Well, just pointed to the stripe in the kitchen.

I know on one level that covering these marks will not make me forget Gpa, but another part of me wants to hang on.  And yet another part of me thinks I have to paint the whole room over again.  A big task, more than I want to take on right now.

This morning, I got the paint and brush out.  Went throughout the house and did touch ups.  Took less than an hour.

Still have my memories and my daughter will be happier as well.

I have to admit, it does look better.Exif_JPEG_422

Celebrating 50

Exif_JPEG_422My birthday was yesterday but started the party on Wednesday.  Lillie had plans out of town so I went to her house for dinner, libations and a new card strategy game.  Sorry, don’t remember what it is called.

Had lots of fun.

Yesterday, I had some board member business and it took longer than we thought.  The account hadn’t been updated like it should and they wanted a signature from a member 3 people ago.

Then I rushed home and started to weed eat the back in preparation for the gift.  Only got half done when they came.  But that is OK, later they had a blast looking for bugs in the tall grass.

I got chickens for my birthday.  Yes, I asked for them.  Their house needs a little work so they are in a large dog crate right now.  I’ve been referring to them as ‘the girls’.  The dogs are ‘the boys’.

The boys are very interested in the girls.  So they’ll be supervised for a while.

And then Becky came by with a different kitty.  The garden kitties have disappeared and we hope they went to new homes.  Don’t want to think to much about alternative fates.

She had asked the neighbors if they had seen the kitties.  She got a call yesterday that a neighbor had found one.  Becky asked, “Is it a grey one or an orange one?”

“It’s a black one.”  HAHAHAHAHAHA

So I kept her. She’s currently in the bathroom until I can get a baby gate.

Don’t you think a black cat for your 50th birthday is appropriate?

The dogs run back and forth between the two new additions to the family.

My sister reminded me of something I said, oh so many animals ago……”No, new animals!”

Why do words come back to haunt you?

I replied, “Everything resets at 50.”

What I Lie About

If I don’t want you to know that I’ve been crying and you ask why my eyes are red, I will tell you I have allergies.

But if I’ve been outside and it’s hot, my face will get red.  And Texas summers can get hot.

I don’t have a problem telling you my age.  I like hearing that I don’t look old enough to be a grandma.  And I love being a grandma.

I have been losing weight because I haven’t been eating cookies in the middle of the night, the day or on an hourly basis any longer.  I am glad I have the memories.

I don’t have a scale so who knows how much I weighed.  I had an opportunity to get on the scales the other day and oh brother, am I ever sorry that I did.  I was about 15 pounds more than I had when I left my job and would have thought I was closer to what I weighed when I left.

So I had to go get my driver’s license picture taken to renew for this birthday.  When the lady asked me if my weight was still xxx (15 pounds lighter)  I replied, “Oh, Yes.”

Just rolled off my tongue!  That was easy.  They tested my eyesight was adequate with my glasses, I am so glad they didn’t make me get on the scales.

Um, but when I looked at the picture, I could tell, it didn’t lie.


Like Being In Love

Today the sky was bluer, trees were greener and images were sharper.  Kinda like being in love.  Have I met someone?  Nope.

I picked up my new prescription glasses.  When I went to the eye exam a couple of weeks ago, I discovered I haven’t been since 2010.

It felt a little funny driving but I kinda like it and it’s less messy than being in love.


Bad Manners Excuse

I can’t remember if I’ve blogged on this before but it’s come up again, with another person.  I have to say that it really goes all over me when someone excuses bad behavior with, “That’s just the way they are.”

My husband said that about his mother.  At the time, I wondered if I’d get a turn at being ‘that way.’

I say it’s down right plain rude.  I think these people have learned this is the way to get what they want.  The rest of us get out of they way and let them.

But I can tell you, if I started acting this way, people would not be making excuses.  Oh, wait, maybe I can, maybe I could tell them oh, I’m sorry but I am dealing with a death in the family and see how long I can get away with it.

However,  I don’t want to behave that way.  I like who I am and if it’s too nice, well so be it.  Though I am going to stand up for myself more now. ( I don’t have to account to parents and grandparent or get to rely on them)

I do have another thing that I have to deal with.  Last year when it was time to tell the church what we plan to give next year(this year) I told the guy in charge that I don’t like to pledge in general.  I do plan to give I just don’t like the idea of a group expecting a certain amount.  Especially since Gpa was beginning to decline and I didn’t know how long we’d have.

I didn’t want a pledge hanging over my head as I looked for a job.

I got a letter the other day, showing what I have given for 2013 and how much pledge I have left. There were a lot of zero’s partly because for most of Feb I was out-of-town and some weeks I’m giving cash and I haven’t bothered to put it in an envelope and put my name on it.  BECAUSE I didn’t think I had a pledge.  I thought my giving was between me and God.

I am so frustrated that I’m afraid I’ll end up being a shrieking shrew.

I will be starting a job in May (Yay!!! this is so exciting and such a relieve) so I’m trying to remember that I’ll be able to cover this amount of money over the year.  But I keep going back to the conversation and this man knows I don’t have a job.

All he has asked me these past months is if I have a job yet. (or if I’ll read or play music or snuff out the candles)  He hasn’t asked how I’m doing, if I need anything, are my bills covered, am I getting enough to eat, or sleep.  And I’m now thinking he’s asking about the job because of the pledge.

I can tell you that when asked this year, I’m only going to pledge a dollar so I can meet it the first time I give.  And then I’ll be back to the freedom of my giving being between God and myself.

Sorry, didn’t mean to ramble but this really bothers me.

Too Depressed or Not Depressed Enough

Hospice was scheduled to come the morning that Gpa died.  I called them to see if they wanted to come out anyway.

No, call 9-1-1, but if you need the bereavement services, be sure to call back.

I’m remembering that conversation now.  And wondering if I should call.

But I would have to find the number.  I don’t even remember which company I told the doctor.  I guess I can ask the doctor.

But I’m either too depressed or not depressed enough to bother.

I really think I’m fine.  I don’t feel a need to talk to a bunch of strangers about what I’m going through.  Especially as I have family and friends who have shared the last year with Gpa and I.

These are the people who I want to share what I remember with.   And I do.

We have been remembering all kinds of great things about Gpa.  And helping me figure out what I’m going to do next.  And in the mean time, I’m still working in the garden and helping harvest for the food pantry.  The first Tuesday in April, I started teaching juggling again.  And tomorrow will be the first Crime Watch meeting since I took a break.

I don’t think I’ll bother with finding the number.  But it was nice of them to offer.

Self Pay

Gpa had an annuity that paid him more than Medicaid allowed.  He  did receive some Medicare benefits.  The cost of many facilities for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients were priced over what he received.

It did cause for a challenge and there were a couple of moves.  Another challenge happened when the care giver changed and I didn’t feel that the new one was right for us.

Since I haven’t been working, I haven’t had insurance.  So I am self pay as well.  I do have a health retirement account and it charges me maintenance fees.  Um, by the time I get to use it, it will be gone because of the fees.  So I called.

Oh, guess what?  They allow a person to use the money for health care if they are no longer with the company they invested in the plan.

I’ve already received money back for the chiropractic care I got for my back.  So tomorrow I’m going to go to the dentist and eye doctor an become current on those items.

I think we have to be very careful when we start regulating the options individuals have.  Especially when creating laws.  Laws are on the books for a very long time and are hard to change.

The Other F Word

Last night the librarian told me I had too much time on my hands when I told her I watched a documentary on Mr. Peppermint.  He was on a morning show in Dallas for many years.  I watched him and so did the kids.

I wonder what she would have said if she knew I had The Other F Word on my DVR.  It’s about punk rockers who have become fathers.

I watched it last night.  I love that punk rockers found out that babies change your live in ways you would never imagine.  It was fun to watch the interaction of the dads and their kids.

Then one shared of his son’s car accident.  Someone cut him off on a highway and he swerved and hit a pole.  The son died.  It wasn’t clear if the person who caused the accident was aware what they had caused.

The dad was distraught and shared that he wanted to go where his son was.  He planned to follow.  Then he remembered that he had other children and couldn’t go anywhere.

My heart went out to him.  I understand some of how he feels.  With Gpa gone only a couple of months, I know the desire to follow. I miss him.  I miss my mom and dad.  I miss my grandma.  But with many loved ones still here, I also know the conflict with that desire.

I want to be here to sing the bumble bee song to the grandbabies, attend my daughter’s weddings, play Catan when there are 3 or more in the house.


Wearing Grief

I don’t think I’d call it Grief Recovery.  I’m not sure you ever really get over grief.  My mother and grandmother have been gone almost 20 years.  Where did the time go?!?

Now that Gpa is gone, I’d say it’s a fresh wave of grief.  I’m not only missing him.  I’m missing the others who are gone as well.

Some days grief is a cloak I put on before I leave the house.  Other days just a button on the lapel. No matter the size, it’s there nonetheless.

Some days it’s a comfort and other’s it stifles.

But I wouldn’t say there is any getting over it.

What Does Laura Want?

I understand that people want to know what I’m going to do next.

A neighbor asked me what does Laura want.  He asked this after I told him I’ve been doing what I want.

And yet he and other’s want something else.  I’m not sure what.

The wonderful thing about this time with Gpa was we both got to do the things that made us happy.  He liked to go for a ride.  I’d take him to go juggle.

He loved spending time with the kids and would toss a bean bag to them. – bonus

I got my watercolors out and got to get several pictures done.  I haven’t gotten them out since he got sick until tonight.  What a nice way to spend an evening.

I’m creating books for the grandbabies that focus on what Gpa liked.  Below is a grasshopper for the bug book.  Gpa liked to tell people that there is a certain spot on the grasshopper’s leg that if you touched it, the leg would fall off.   This allows the grasshopper to get away from birds.

Now that I’ve gotten my music room set up, I’ve been playing daily.

But saying that I want to paint, play music and juggle isn’t what people want to hear.

I’m not sure what they want me to say.

Maybe that I’m happy. I’m sad that Gpa is gone. I miss him.  But I have all these wonderful memories that I get to remember when I paint, play music and juggle.

My hope and prayer for you is that you find what makes you happy and that you allow yourself to do it/be it.