Paula here…posting from my phone again. So far,we have no connection yet. the other day, we were to get that new internet company and their connection- well- it was no connection.
They came and sat out in the pasture trying to fix the broken connection, alas- to no avail. They did call to say we could configure it, which my son tried to do, but the broken connection is – well- still broken.
They will be sending a level 2 tech tomorrow. Why didn’t they send out a guy who knew how to fix it in the first place? “we’ll send Mort- let’s see if he knows how to fix it yet.” Sigh. Well, I hope it gets fixed tomorrow. I’m having trouble blogging on my phone and God knows it’s all about me.
Just as I was dozing off on the afternoon of October 9, 2007, my telephone rang. It was a man from CPS telling me he had gotten a phone call from someone at Parkland saying my son in law was there and he was non responsive. My daughter, Amanda and her husband, Sean , were on their way from Commerce, Texas to see their children before the kids went to live in California for a year or so. How this man got the phone call from the hospital, I’ll never know. I asked where my daughter was, but he had no idea. I called my husband, ran to the car and began speeding to the hospital. By the time I got to the hospital parking lot, I received a call that my daughter was there as well and we were to see the chaplain.
We met Sean’s family at the hospital and were led to a room where they told us the kids had been in a horrific accident. In an effort to avoid hitting a semi, Amanda veered to the left and lost control of the car. That’s all they could tell us for the time being. Amanda was in surgery,and Sean was already in the trauma ICU room.
Amanda came out of surgery late that night- almost into the morning. The accident was around one or two in the afternoon. The doctors told us they had put her in a medically induced coma, but they knew she had some brain damage. The truck had landed on her arm, cutting off the circulation. Because of the lack of blood to her arm, she had no pulse on that side of her body. They had to go to her right side to find the pulse. The operation was to let the blood out of the top of her arm and it was so swollen , they could not close the wound.
In the meantime, Sean was not stable and doctors were trying to stabilize his blood pressure and other vital signs, but it was to no avail. After two days, his parents had to make the tough decision to turn the life support off. I wondered if I would have to make the same decision myself. I could not imagine the anguish his parents must have gone through. Sean passed away October 11, 2007. A sad day for everyone. My daughter woke up Thanksgiving Day and the sad task fell to me to tell her of her husband’s passing.
I can’t believe seven years have already passed. Although Sean and I were never really close, towards the end of his life, we became a little closer. I miss him and wish we had had the time to become even closer.
I tell this story to say it can become too late to make amends to those you should . We never know how long any of us have. Take the time to write a note, pick up a phone and express what they mean to you. One day it may be too late. I’m glad I got that last hug when he visited us before he passed away . Rest in peace Sean. We miss you and we love you.
It is not news to anyone I have bipolar disorder. I do not hide it and I have mentioned it more than once here on my blog.I don’t know if many people are aware, but some folks who have bipolar and other disorders of the mental variety are or have been cutters. Just in case you don’t know, cutters cut themselves for one specific reason,which I will explain. I was a cutter for a certain amount of time and I feel qualified to speak out.
First, one may wonder why a person would cut themselves. Well, people cut to feel something.Even if it is pain,it helps. It stings and stinging is to feel something. Medication, although wonderful these days,can leave you flat- like- having no feelings. For example, I tend to become terribly depressed, but also at times, very manic. I used to stay up for days during my manic periods- sleeping only a couple of hours a night. Once medication is prescribed, the depression and the mania meld into a non mood. One is not manic, not depressed, just blah. No one likes being blah. There is a feeling of nothingness deep inside that is difficult to deal with. That is why it is so important to let your doctor know when this happens. Then, the medication can be adjusted to allow feelings to come through- not necessarily the moods, but feelings of pleasure, pain, happiness, sadness.
Sometimes, with the lack of feelings- if I was alone or I had a run-in with someone, I might cut myself. I never cut deeply, as some do, and I only cut my hands- the palms to be exact. Because I had young children at that time, I reasoned, my hands were the safest place to cut since they wouldn’t see it. But, they did.
People have different triggers that lead them to cut, but it all hinges on trying to feel something, somehow- anyhow. Their doctor needs to know. Encourage them to tell their doctor. They may or may not hospitalize them-but, more than likely, they will prescribe medicine that curbs the need to cut. Cutting can be very dangerous. Some people cut deeply and are transported to the hospital frequently to stitch up their wounds. I was not one of them.
I have not had the need to cut myself in a very long time. The doctor put me on the medication Risperdal which helped me stop. I hope this little missive gives an insight on what it is and what it means to be a cutter. The cutter is already ashamed of what they do. Gently help them . The next time they go to the doctor, offer to go with and tell the doctor or urge them to tell so they can get the help they need. Whatever you do, please don’t judge ,don ‘t nag, don’t yell. These things do not help-it only increases the need to cut.Should you know someone who cuts and you are not sure how to help, call a doctor, or a mental help line. Suicide is not what they are attempting in most cases- just a need to feel something.
Yesterday, I went to a new hair stylist to get my hair cut. I live in a small town where there is an abundance of hair dressers, Mexican restaurants, donut shops, hamburger joints and pizza places.
My usual hairdresser and I had an appointment at 4:30 p.m. . She texted me at 3 or so asking if we could reschedule the appointment because it was kid’s homecoming today and she had so much to do. I’m sorry? We had an appointment days ago.So, after much ado, I decided to cancel my appointment and try the new hair salon aptly named “Southern Roots”.
As I have stated earlier and frequently, my mother was a beautician. I’ve had my hair done professionally all my life. I loved it until I was a teenager. From the time I was a little girl, I had this spray,that gel,back combing,hair rolling. Now, I don’t. My hair is quite curly -especially when it is humid, which it is wont to be here in Texas. I’ve spent my life hating my curly hair – straightening it by drying it at the air conditioner. No- for real. I would bend over the air conditioner, brushing madly while the compressor blew my hair as straight as pick up sticks. My mother hated it. I loved it. The straighter the better.
Having been born in the late 50’s, I was an impressionable child of the sixties and seventies. Flower power, straight natural hair with no chemicals in it is what we were all about. Consequently, I still do not use these products. Yet, my stylists are constantly- well, I’m not sure amazed is the right word- maybe the correct word is confused- as to why I don’t use gels and stuff in my hair. I figured out this morning the reason must be that I had all that goop in my hair as a child and I had my fill of it. So, don’t be surprised if you one day have a client who does not use gel, blow dry their hair, and let their curls roll free. It might just be me.
As a young mother – well, even before then, the “F” word was my favorite word. Think about it. What word can be so descriptive, so encouraging, so vile, so… everything all at once. It can mean something is good, bad, indifferent, or so terrible. There is no other word that is “all-for-one-and-one-for-all” It is all-encompassing and all meaning. So, it should be the ultimate word.
Somewhere along the line, though, I quit saying it. It just didn’t sound-well- feminine. I say this knowing there are folks who would disagree . But, I was brought up that “ladies” didn’t speak like that. My dad, a navy yeoman first class, who had a few choice words from time to time, once told me that it never sounded intelligent to use so many swear words. I thought he was pretty smart myself.
The end of the use of my favorite word began one night when I heard a young lady overuse it. Nothing was just this and that. No , it was “effing this and effing that.” I couldn’t help but think how terrible it sounded. I didn’t stop all at once. No, it was more like a diet- a dessert word – one that I could only use on occassion lest I overuse it myself.
Well, I prefer it this way, really. I’m in my fifties. Somehow, it just doesn’t sound right. So, for me , it isn’t. Is it for you?
“Why do you have donkeys?” , everyone asks. Well, when we were looking at the house we currently live in, the owner had a horse named Max and a donkey named Festus. My husband fell in love with Festus and I with Max. But, the owner was not willing to sell either or both. So, we didn’t think about it much longer than that. From time to time, Stephen would lament the fact we didn’t have any donkeys- but not much more than that.
After a couple of years, the drought caused hay to be rather pricey and donkey owners were getting rid of their donks left and right. I began to comb Craigslist for donkeys. I found two free male donkeys. It was close to Valentine’s Day and I thought it would be kinda funny to give my husband a couple of donkeys in celebration of our love. Although I was unable to get the donkeys for the exact February 14th day, I was able to get them a week later.
It was a cold, cold day for Texas and my husband was home on the computer. It seems to me, it might have snowed and work was closed for him. At any rate, the man who was giving me his donkeys, called and said he was at the house. I told my husband not to come outside because his surprise was on it’s way. So, he would be unable to see what was going on, we unloaded the donkeys at the end of the driveway right into the pasture. I said, “By the way, what are their names? ” He looked at me, grunting, ” Chris and Anthony. I named them after my brothers. Ha ha ha.”
“Oh brother- everyone is a comedian,” I thought. Anyway, we enjoyed the boys by themselves for about a year. When Christmas came around, I decided to get two girls (Jennys). I thought both Stephen and the donkeys had been good and deserved these girls. Little did I know they were both pregnant when they came to us. Soon, we were up to five donkeys. The other Jenny sadly lost her baby. The Jennys names were Blanche (for her white face) and Bambi (for her doe eyes). The baby born was Gregory since he had been born on our friend Greg’s birthday. Our newest donkey, Thirteen, was born on Friday, June 13, 2014. We will not be having any more donkeys since we now have a mare.
Donkeys have their own personalities. Each one i
s different and almost all have the cross on their back. Donkeys are herd protectors. If we had a herd of anything other than dogs, they would be great protectors. But, donkeys, like horses, are not wild about dogs. The dogs try to herd the donkeys and the badonkadonks aren’t too happy about that.
My friend,Martie, who writes “Is that a Hair in My Biscuit?” here on WordPress posted about her two dogs today. I have now been inspired to blog about our animals. We live out in the country on three acres and our animals are many and varied. I thought today, I would write just about our two horses- the next time- our 6 donkeys. The time after that, our 9 dogs. We also have three cats, and three hens.
Houdini is a little miniature horse. I adopted him when I adopted my Tennessee Walking horse, Licorice. I adopted him for my grand daughter who is only 2. He is more of a pet than a horse to ride or draw a cart- although he could if we trained him. The thing about miniature horses is that you cannot put more than 50 pounds on their backs. He is kinda square shaped- that’s just how they are . They look heavy set , but it is very muscular.
I do not know if you remember the “I can’t believe it’s not butter” spokesman, Fabio, but that is exactly who Houdini looks like. Fabio had long hair – blondish and flowing. So does Houdini. Fabio is very self confident. So is Houdini. Fabio is a ladies man. So was Houdini. You can see them together here.
Twins? Don’t you think?
Next up. Licorice.I have always wanted to own a horse. I found that horse in Licorice, a 22 year old Tennessee Walking Horse who has had a rough life. One of her owners just decided not to feed her anymore and she was so very thin. When I went to the rescue, I actually was looking for another horse. But, when Licorice nuzzled me , that was all she wrote. She stole my heart . She came home to be mine in May. We ride almost daily. She is quite frisky for her age and she loves to prance for the kids at the daycare. I love this horse madly. I never thought it could be like this! How great is that?
“You’ve come into possession of one vial of truth serum. Who would you give it to (with the person’s consent, of course) — and what questions would you ask?”
Truth serum – also known back in the day as sodium pentothal leaves a bad taste in my mouth (no pun intended). I would never ask anyone to take a vial of it . When my dad came back from World War II, he was not the same man. The official diagnosis was paranoid schizophrenic. Today, that diagnosis would be post traumatic stress disorder. Because the drugs available were not able to take the atrocities of the war from his mind, his symptoms continued and shock treatments were ordered. Before giving him shock treatments, they gave him sodium pentothal or truth serum to knock him out. How I wish they gave him truth serum and just talked to him instead of shocking his brain. It may have been easier for him and for us.
After his brain was shocked, he came home and napped many hours. When he awoke, his head ached so bad from the shock, we all had to be quiet. We didn’t have to be quiet for only a few hours, but for a day or two afterwards.The treatments caused him to sleep a lot and by the time 6 weeks were up, he was in need of another- so grouchy, it was difficult to talk to him.
So, should anyone offer you truth serum -run, run as if your life depended on it because it just might.
Always filled with imagination and wonder about every little thing, my grandmother thought it a good idea to teach me to read when I was only three. By doing so, she opened a whole new world for me. Let me backtrack a bit and give you some history regarding this decision.
My parents owned a beauty shop (a whole ‘nother story) and while my sister was six years older than me,she had to attend school- leaving me with my grandmother while everyone was busy going about their day. My grandmother, “Mama” and I had so much fun and I never thought I loved anyone more than her. We played outside, we watched “As the World Turns” after lunch, she gardened, I rode my faithful ol’ red stick pony around the yard- we had fun. Once, while gardening, she fell right down on her backside. “Don’t tell your daddy,” she’d said. The minute he came home from work, I blurted out, “Mama fell in the yard today,”- touching off a bevy of worry for my dad. To say I was a busy body child ( and adult), capable of creating all kinds of havoc would be an understatement. It must have been after I locked Mama out of the house because she was going to spank me when she decided to teach me something that might occupy me for at least an hour.
I can remember sitting at the hearth while Mama taught me the words. She taught me to read with my finger- you know, following each word with my index finger as though it was a word magnet. Maybe not then, maybe not just as I was learning the words, but later, those words began dancing off the page and into my vivid imagination. Oh, how I loved to read.
In later years, after Mama had gone to live with my aunt Lorene, it was sometimes all my mother could do to get me to go outside and play. Many was the day I would curl up in Mama’s rocking chair, beginning a book, only for my mom to urge me to go outside and “get some sun.” And many was the day I begged to read “only 3 more chapters” because I was almost finished.
And now, although I still love reading, the love of words tumble out of my head and onto paper (in the old days), and now, on , my computer screen.
So, if I had my “druthers”, it would be my grandmother whom I would want to read my posts most of all. It is because of her I kept out of trouble by reading (well, not all trouble, don’tcha know!) and in reading, being able to express myself in the written word the way I sometimes cannot orally. Thanks Mama!