Monday, December 29, 2014

Sad Day

Today started out very sad for me. I found one of the neighborhood stray kitties dead in the box by the door. Was such a sweet little soul. Always made my door the last stop of his day. I saw him in the box two days ago sleeping on the warm blanket inside. He let me pet him. Wasn't there yesterday. He must have come back in the night to a warm spot and passed on.

Since I don't have anyone to help me, I pulled myself up, grabbed the shovel and dug a hole in the far part of the backyard. Took an hour to do it. Then I put the baby to rest.

I have been in pain all day - both physically and heartbroken. The only solace I can find is that the sweet little soul found a warm bed, food and water at my door before he left this world.

Every living creature deserves to be loved. Every one who dies deserves to be mourned.

Friday, December 26, 2014

A Christmas Day

I had dinner with a friend last night. It was an unusual Christmas dinner held at her church. With us were several homeless men who were staying the night at the church. The ministry offered is for homeless men to have a place to go on Thursday nights. Other churches cover the remaining part of the week.

Quite a few members gathered and prepared the meal. They then served it to us. It was a humbling experience.

One of the homeless men spoke to my friend explaining why he was late to arrive. He had visited his brother early in the day. Broke my heart that he had family but was having to sleep at a church on Christmas night and any other place he could find the remaining time. I could never have allowed my brother to be homeless no matter what the circumstances. I wish I could have said something to every one of their family members - love your family while they are here, look after them, home is where they are.

My mother was not the nicest person. She made it clear she never wanted another child (and told me so every day). My father became an alcoholic and our lives suffered from it. I never became close to my brother until I started college. But when time came, I took care of my mother, brother and daddy until they passed away. I'd do it all over again. I cannot begin to understand why people turn their backs on family.

I came home to a very cold apartment, but I had a roof over my head, a bed to sleep in, and food in my pantry. I am forever grateful for God's care in my life. Without Him, I could not have made it this far.

Christmas is not about gifts, parties, and family gatherings. It is about love in the purest form. Everyone deserves to be loved.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

GOODIES ON THE PORCH

Thank you to the kind soul who left a box of presents on my Porch!! RASCAL loves his toy and treats.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

A Personal Christmas

When Christmas season comes around, many people deal with it in many different ways. Those who have families gather together to celebrate. But those of us who don't have family anymore try to find a way to deal with being alone at Christmas. It seems that the lack of family is felt so strongly this time of year.

I don't expect everyone who reads this post to understand. You have not walked in my shoes. You haven't walked in the shoes of others who suffer at Christmas. So how can you understand.

It is hard to handle. No other way to explain it. 

This time of year I feel like a rejected stray left out in the cold. Nowhere to go. Just wanting one thing in life - love. 

Do I share this to make someone feel sorry for me? No. No one wants that. I just want the same thing every person on this earth wants this time of year - a family, love, to fit in. 

Please don't cast off your leftovers for me to eat alone. Invite me to the original dinner. Don't feel sorry for me being alone. I do that enough for the both of us. Don't give me second hand invitations when your original plans don't work out. No one wants to be a second thought. I merely want to feel welcome, like there is a place for me, a secure loving place. I miss having that place in my own family and don't know how to get it back. 

This is a very hard time of year for many people, especially those who are alone. Instead of wrapping yourself so tightly into your own family, let someone else in from the cold. 

Life is hard enough without adding more pain and grief to someone's existence. Remember kind words are more soothing than a hateful bag of judgement. Some of us are very sensitive and feel things deeply. When we are hurt, we forgive, but are guarded to not forget lest history repeats itself. Don't kick someone when they're already down. Lift them up instead or get out of the way.

Christmas is especially hard this year because I've been fighting illness. Don't know what caused it, but it adds to the already heavy weight of lupus flares. 

If I can be blessed with peaceful sleep, I'll be most thankful this year. If I can find a new way to deal with being alone then the burden won't be as heavy.  

Life is one day at a time. Thankful for the small things. Being sensitive to those who are suffering. After all, who doesn't want someone to care?

A Snow Surprise

Should have posted this sooner, but have been under the weather. 

Saturday I went to the Kentucky Theater for a "Downton Abbey" preview. Turns out they showed the first episode of 2015. 

When I awoke way too early Saturday morning, I decided to turn on the tv to get the weather report. The weather man said the following: "No snow expected today." 

So imagine my surprise when I walked out the door to find a dusting of snow on the ground. Wilmore had indeed received snow. While walking into the theater, big snowflakes were falling in Lexington. Perhaps he should have looked outside his window that morning!

Slight chance of snow flakes for Wednesday night into Thursday. Could it be a white Christmas? Wouldn't that be nice!


THANK YOU!!

This morning I woke up feeling so alone. Just wishing I could sleep through Christmas so the aloneness and loneliness would not feel so bad. Problem is I could only sleep for two hours last night. Rain came in and a new weather pattern proceeded to beat on my body.

This afternoon I received a light in my day. Beautiful flowers and cookie jar base. Cinnamon sticks and cedar sprigs add to the wonderful smell.

The one who sent it did not sign their name. Only said they read this blog. So I want to say thank you for a beautiful gift. Means so much to me.



Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Christmas Post

There may not be presents under my tree, but I enjoy decorating for Christmas. The lights suck me in every time. They suck Rascal in, too. I've pushed him off the counter too many times this year because he thinks he's an ornament. 

I love ornaments and have collected several over the years from friends. Getting an ornament means more to me than anything else. My favorite ones are those with family pictures. Even though they have passed on, this way they are still with me. 

The larger nativity belonged to my brother. He bought it thirty years ago. It remains the dearest one I own.

If you have a home to go home to this Christmas, go! Treasure the time you have with family. You don't know what you have until it is  gone. 



Just sharing photos here. Couldn't post without adding one of my best buddy, Rascal. 





LOVE LOVE LOVE!!

http://www.teleflora.com/flowers/bouquet/telefloras-holly-days-centerpiece-599494p.asp?s=t&srccode=EM_PR_CH_141217_B&promotion=EMP1217B&sp_mid=10182595&sp_rid=bWFyeWpjODNAYW9sLmNvbQS2&spMailingID=10182595&spUserID=MTk3Nzk1NTM3OTgS1&spJobID=441384323&spReportId=NDQxMzg0MzIzS0


Just love this!! Wish it wasn't' so expensive!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Another Night of Sickness

Repeat last Tuesday night. Throwing up, fever and chills. Why? Who knows. I feel so alone and helpless. The wet, cold weather is beating my body to pieces today. 

I'm too sick to walk downtown to get ginger ale and tummy meds. 

Looks like another Christmas alone. Sometimes I as myself what I did to go through all of this. I feel like giving up. 

Just hoping whatever this is passes soon. Would give anything to have someone here through tough times.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

AT THE TOP OF MY WISH LIST

Today I have only one wish for Christmas - to pay off the $1,000 in medical debt hanging over me. The burden is so heavy. It would take a miracle to meet this need, but I believe in miracles. 

Peace is a gift.

Friday, December 12, 2014

A NIGHT OF SICKNESS AND REFLECTION

I'm typing on my Kindle because my computer is having problems. So if I misspell a word or two, overlook it.

Yesterday was horrible. I started feeling sick around 3:00 pm. Throwing up every fifteen minutes. Lasted for four hours. My throat is still raw ad I have not slept. Fevers and chills.

An hour ago I started to feel better. 

I know what it feels like to deal with illness alone. I have also learned to take things moment by moment. It is not fair for me to expect anyone to relate to this unless they have dealt with it.

The fact remains that every person will reach a point of illness, suffering and being alone. I try to remind people not to judge someone because of their life circumstance because you are not immune to the same path. Mine started in my mid 30's. As time passes, grief, illness, being alone all become your life.

So many times I find myself saying I understand now. It took my life changing drastically to learn. 

Don't learn the hard way.

Compassion is a gift. Advice is cheap. Love instead.

When I am as sick as I have been the past two days, I remember experience is the best teacher. It softens your heart to others. I wonder time and again why suffering has been a huge part of my life. Truth is I would not have a compassionate heart without it. 

The Bible teaches sin can destroy you. I believe seeing someone in need and doing nothing is a far worse sin. 

Christmas is the hardest time of the year for me. Loss of family is magnified. So many people hurt this time of year because of lost loved ones. Time and love are far better gifts than those wrapped in paper. I yearn to go home this time of year. There is no home to return to, no family,  nothing. I cannot change this. I can love, care, listen, and be there. Small gifts but worth more than gold.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Cold and Wet!

It is a cold, wet day in Wilmore. Has been a cold, wet week. The little girl kitty hasn't moved off the end of the bed. Rascal is curled up on the sofa under a blanket. Buddy, who refuses to come inside, is curled up under a big, heavy blanket in a deep box on the covered porch. And I am typing this entry with gloves on! 

It is always colder inside my place than outside. About ten degrees colder. When the heat isn't running, there is a huge cold draft flowing through this place.

For those who suffer from systemic lupus, you probably have difficulties when it rains or turns cold. Stiff, painful joints, swollen joints, even physically sick in other areas. Moving to KY was my dream, but I think the winter months are going to be the death of me.

When I am able to stand at the sink, I keep the hot water flowing just to thaw out my hands. Eases some of the deep pain. 

This cold/wet period has put me in bed longer than I wanted to be. Just sometimes I wish I could live in a warm place without having to choose between medications, food, medical bills, etc. 

Today I think I'll just take a cue from the felines and wrap up in a warm blanket. Nothing will get done, of course, but at least I can stop suffering from the inside cold.




Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Christmas Wishes

I've made a Christmas list ever since I can remember. When I was a young child, my Daddy took care of it. Later my brother took care of it. It wasn't much, but I was thankful to receive anything. The year I turned 16, my brother couldn't afford Christmas. Neither could my Daddy. My brother gave me a Christmas record album that year. Being 16, I was disappointed, but we did have a Christmas dinner I will always remember. No matter what, my Daddy worked hard and provided for his family. 

I still have than record album even though I don't have a record player. It has been on my wish list for a lot of years. 

Now I'm alone. Parents gone. Brother gone. Other family members gone. Christmas is much harder to deal with as each year passes. 

This past Thanksgiving I just wanted one thing: to go home, the place where I grew up, crawl into my old bed, sleep for hours, wake up with my family there. I just wanted to go home. Sometimes what we want and long for cannot be given. When I feel so homesick I cannot stand it, I try to go back to good memories. 

This is my Christmas list. Even though it will not be filled physically, it is fun to make one each year. 

1. A record player

2. A folding kitchen cart - http://www.hsn.com/products/origami-folding-kitchen-island-cart-with-casters/7536224?query=7536224&isSuggested=True&

My kitchen has such limited space that I don't have enough counter.

3.  A real Christmas tree - http://www.greenvalleychristmastrees.com/6-5-to-7-ft-Fraser-Fir-Christmas-Tree-p/fft657f.htm

Who wouldn't want one?! Of course I'd have to get a stand.

4.  Charms for my charm bracelet - https://www.etsy.com/listing/193940519/sweet-home-alabama-necklace-rustic?ref=favs_view_6https://www.etsy.com/listing/194247806/southern-belle-necklace-shabby-chic?ref=favs_view_5https://www.etsy.com/listing/150244112/alabama-pendant-alabama-necklace-state?ref=favs_view_7.

5. To go home. 

6.  A real Christmas dinner. 

7.  To be able to turn on the heat in the coldest days ahead. When your choice is food, medication or heat, guess which ones get cut.

It is always fun to make a list of wishes. Of course they are just that - wishes. If you ever give up on them, what a dark place it would be. 

Hope your wishes all come true this Christmas.

Being Thankful!

Last week I wore a pair of shoes that apparently were not good for my feet. My right foot has been swollen for seven days now. I could  not put a shoe on until Monday night and then barely squeezed into it. I finally remembered what my best friend told me, "Ice then hot."

So last night I soaked my foot in scalding hot water after putting ice on it most of the day. This morning I could walk better! I was so very thankful! Looks like I'll be going up to a size 8 wide.

I am amazed at how many things we take for granted until we lose them. With each permanent loss we suffer a grief. I lost my health many years ago. Grief. I lost my parents and only sibling many years ago. Grief you only learn to live with as each day passes. I lost my physical ability to work a few years ago. Grief again. 

Since lupus (plus its additions) have taken so much life and ability from me, I've learned to take each day one at a time and appreciate the things I can do like stand in the shower, wash dishes, etc., things  most people take for granted. Today I was so thankful to be able to stand on my right foot with less inflammation. 

During the holiday season people tend to remember what they are thankful for. Just because my "thankful things" are different than yours, it doesn't make it any less important. The one thing that truly hurts is when someone remarks about the loss of my family. I always want to say this, "Tell me how to feel when you walk in my shoes." 

People are way to free to give advice whether we want it or not. I tend to shut my mouth and not say things to them because I wouldn't want someone to treat me that way. When they do and really leave a scar, it takes a while for me to heal from the damage and remember I'm not a bad person. No one needs someone standing in judgement over them all of the time. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Luke 6:31. What a better world this would be if everyone practiced what Luke had to say.

For today I am thankful to be able to stand on my foot and to actually put on a shoe again.