Tag Archives: Health

Quote about truth

Hello, my friends! 

Is it only my perspective or does there seem to be more underhandedness going on in the world? Recently I read this quote and thought you also might find it interesting.

 

beware of the half truth; you may have gotten hold of the wrong half. – author unknown

 

I hope you are doing well. I’m working on my health – physical, mental, emotional – having to find ways to manage when extra needed support isn’t readily forthcoming. Some things have been set aside until I’m not feeling as overwhelmed.

What’s going on in your life these days? Are you making plans for vacations or celebrations?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

 

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Challenge updates: NaNoWriMo and PiBoIdMo

My writing challenges update:

NaNoWriMo: I am not doing well when you look at my link (at top of page), but I am thinking about it. That’s a start, isn’t it? 🙂  So far … zero words written.

PiBoIdMo: It’s day four and I have 9 ideas so far. Tara Lazar has fabulous guests again who have fabulous suggestions to help us with our picture book idea writing. I feel good about it this year.

NaBloPoMo: As you may have noticed, so far I am keeping up with daily blog posts.

Health: The first part of this week is busy for me in other ways, so my writing time is chopped up. Monday – an information education session called Understanding Dementia. It was very helpful, some of it new info for me. Tuesday – a Caregiver Stress Management workshop, which I expect to be more of what I need to hear. Wednesday I have three appointments for myself, including with my naturopath and my reflexologist. They have helped me with health issues, and aided me in regaining and maintaining my health – very important to me. I have to be well in order to better take care of others. It looks as if I will have Thursday and Friday for writing. All this takes place when I have someone present for my respite time. It probably won’t be uninterrupted, though.

Writing: I went through a blah spell with my writing, low on inspiration and energy for it. In early Spring one of my daughters got me into a game to play on my iPhone and it has turned into a vehicle of inspiration for my writing. Each day when I ‘visit’ my ‘neighbours’ I leave a little blurb of 120 characters or less. The response has been generally good, and that has served to keep me going. I found it has even released my creative thinking so that now I’m into these writing challenges it could be of help. My wheels didn’t rust or seize up during the slow time. 🙂  In fact, I am seriously thinking about a story book I can write from what I have been posting there. One never knows from where will come the next inspiration.

That’s all for now. I will post something tomorrow.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

 

 

 

When Reality smacks you upside the head

Reality bites. hard. Ever notice?

Saturday was one of those reality check days.

Last week was full of beautiful weather days, so when it worked out for us to take a drive to visit someone we love we took that opportunity. It was time for us to visit. She has been failing quickly; each time they brought her to visit us this year there has been a marked difference. Now that she was recently moved into a nursing home (a very good one) it was our turn to go to her.

The three of us got off to a late morning start, directions in hand. By the time we arrived in the area, almost an hour later, we thought she would soon be having her lunch and we didn’t want to interrupt. It was about 11:40 so we found a little seafood restaurant and took our time there.

The instructions we had been given were easy to follow and it wasn’t long before we got pointed in the right direction again. Soon we found the creatively designed, tastefully decorated building – our destination – set back from the busyness of traffic and away from city life. Besides the alternating attractive colour scheme, we noticed high iron gates around well-kept garden sitting areas. It was immediately noticeable that no residents could wander off and get lost or harmed.

After we made our way through security – a must-have feature for this type of nursing home – we found our way to the second level and down winding halls with paintings on the walls and nautical-named units. Upon entering her section we were told she was in the dining area. That’s when reality met us head-on.

Up until that time we knew she had become frail, more and more confused and forgetful, and recently very restless which made it too difficult to keep her safe at home. (If you know much about Alzheimer’s disease then you understand what I’m saying. I’m leaving out a lot.) We were not prepared to see her being fed her lunch. We were not prepared to see this loved one, when taken back to her room where we waited to visit with her, seemingly hardly aware of our presence.

What we expected was to be able to converse with her on some level. We expected to have a conversation that would be disjointed, even nonsensical, perhaps, but at least some kind of communication once she sorted out – even temporarily – who we are. I was prepared for her to not remember me even though she has known me all my life; I could have handled that. That is not what we found. What we found was the cold hard reality of advancing Alzheimer’s. Our sweet, funny, fun-loving, precious loved one is getting away from us. Through the medication that helps to keep her calm and safely and respectably manageable she seems to be fighting to hold on to who she really is, but it is a battle no one yet has been able to win. That is the horror of it. That is reality. Cold. hard. reality.

It was emotional for the three of us. One of us visiting her that day is on the same path, although not as far along. We don’t know if it registered with him that what he witnessed – a journey taken by his father decades before, then his younger brother, and now his youngest sister – is also the strong possibility of where his journey will take him. We don’t know. We won’t ask.

Our drive home was more subdued, conversation minimal, each of us travelling with our own thoughts.

A few hours earlier I was noticing how lovely our Autumn colours are as the leaves are changing from their greens to reds, yellows, and orange hues. I was admiring and thankful for God’s handiwork in the beauty around us. On the drive back home I noticed everything in sharper little snapshots.

Autumn colours

gorgeous displays of colourfully painted leaves, click!

the dull grey of dead tree limbs set against the blue sparkle of a pond, click!

streaks and layers of a rippled blanket of clouds laid across the sky in various shades of grey and white, click!

muddy tidal waters filling a river, click!

stands of tall dead grasses, click!

the small bright green car driving in an oncoming lane, click!

Each place I looked seemed to have its own glory, as if my mind was grasping everything in new awareness, capturing little moments of wonder after a time of sadness. Funny how the mind does that. It’s as if God was reminding me … 

This is reality, too. Enjoy it.

Post Script: I learned while writing this post that she did have a memory of his being there to visit her, and that is good.

Comments? Anything to share?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

Where did my get-up-and-go go?

Ever have ‘one of those days’? I’m having one right now. In fact, I’ve been having one for more days than I care to admit.

You know the saying, “my get-up-and-go got up and went.” Yep! That’s what has happened to me.

So many things I want to do, things I have to do, but I’m lacking the drive to do them.  *sigh*  I keep saying I must be tired. Well, that’s true, I am tired, but it seems to be more than that. Perhaps a temporary change of scenery/location is needed as I just don’t seem to have the motivation to get my act in gear.

Noticeably, I didn’t post a thing here all last week. That’s not good. I have some wonderful books lined up to review here but I can’t seem to think my way through it – but I will, really! I also have books stacked up to read, some of those to review, but I’m plugging away at War and Peace. Sometimes my reading is just for me, which is necessary, and I am enjoying W & P; it’s just taking me forever because I interject other books along the way.

Of course, there is life and all that entails. A sweet acquaintance/friend passed away the morning of February 15, and after hearing about her I learned that my uncle passed during the night of February 14. Both were expected, but not quite that soon.

Have you suffered with the flu this season, or the cold virus thing that is pulling people down? I am trying to avoid it, but I think that may be a lost cause. Two of Dad’s caregivers have been sick, so I am here longer this time until they recover past the contagious stage. I am expecting to go home tomorrow. It’s a little difficult to avoid my beloved at home, though, who is also recovering from it. Astragalus, an herbal remedy which helps to improve immune function, could be my happy thought. 😉

We were hit with a blizzard last night and this morning. That mixed things up a bit. The power went off at 4:00 this morning at home – not here at Dad’s – so I’m glad I wasn’t there for that this time. My husband didn’t even try to get to work – roads were treacherous with wind, snow, ice – but instead he took care of things at home during the power outage.

I already asked if you have had the flu this season, and now I have a couple more questions for you:

  1. What do you do when your ‘get-up-and-go’ got up and went?
  2. Do you enjoy winter storms? how do you cope with them? and power outages?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

 

 

When is a writer not a writer? (pity party alert)

My apologies right off the top for a dreary post.

My question is: When is a writer not a writer?  No, this is not a riddle. Then maybe again it is … but I have no real answer for it. Maybe you do?

I’m tired. No, let me say that again … I’m so tired.

And I don’t feel particularly creative. My well is low – on motivation, energy, inspiration, ideas, stamina. Maybe it’s because I’m tired. And a little discouraged. And feeling a bit forgotten. Now, is that a great menu for a pity party, or what!

My creative well is rather plugged up with stuff, such as – lack of quality sleep (aware all the time while “on duty”, then at home it’s hard to relax from that), caregiving concerns (situation is getting more involved as Alzheimer’s gets worse), always trying to balance two households (but not knowing enough about my own anymore)

physical pain (more since I had a fall a week ago, so add to the list an x-ray tomorrow AM), seeming to be invisible when it comes to the fellowship I was part of (probably “out of sight out of mind” because I seldom get there now), not having much interaction with writers (really need an ‘anytime chat’ place), needing a vacation (every second week at my own home is not a vacation), missing the ocean (my healing place), I have books to read and reviews to write (love doing both, time is a factor), I’m WAY behind in my emails and blog (many other demands and concerns),

and —

I hate that I sound like such a whiner!

Of course, my sister also has her own set of life stuff going on along with our caregiving commitment. It’s always interesting!

Okay, I need a hug. Where is my grandson when I need him?

There must be an up side to all this. Yes, of course there is.

  • 1. Our loved one gets to stay in his own home for as long as we can help him.
  • 2. We get the privilege of honouring him through giving of our time for him.
  • 3. My sister and I are learning as we go while also learning to work together to make a stressful situation workable.
  • 4.  We have fibre optics here! 😉
  • 5. …  hmm     5. … ?

I’m sure there’s more to add but right now I can’t think of it. (Was that you I heard say, “Good!”) This has been a writing exercise for me if nothing else, and hopefully my next post will be more upbeat after the tropical storm and hurricane pass tonight and tomorrow.

By the way, I don’t believe it’s writer’s block that’s got me in this place, it’s weariness and life stuff. Otherwise I could take some tips from my own Writer’s Helps page. 🙂

In the meantime, can you answer my question? When is a writer not a writer? What do you do when you not only can’t come up with ideas but you hardly are interested in trying?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

 

A little misery, a little excitement!, and something for you

 A little misery

Remember in my July 31 post I mentioned sore throat issues? yes, well … I went to the clinic the next day and it’s a good thing I did. Fever, laryngitis caused by inflammation, sore throat caused by infection — I needed medical help. The young doctor (aren’t most of them young these days – as in the age of my children? what’s up with that!) gave me prescriptions to start the healing process.

Two prescriptions, one was only one tablet. One. But it was powerful. The idea was to make me feel better by evening, which it did. The catch? The pharmacist warned me to not take it at bedtime or I wouldn’t sleep, so I took it after a necessarily late dinner (early afternoon). And did I sleep? Nope! Not much. I didn’t drop off until somewhere around 2:30 AM followed by howling, barking neighbourhood dogs rudely waking me at 3:00! I was NOT happy.

And I had a difficult time getting back to sleep. I didn’t do much more than restless tossing and turning between short naps after that, until I heard Dad get up all-too-soon. There ended my chance to wrestle illusive sleep into submission, until my respite arrived mid-morning for the one full day I have scheduled. Misery and I took advantage of that time.

It’s been a less than delightful week for me, health-wise, but it could have been worse. Maybe a week of rest at home and the round of penicillin will do the trick.

It’s also been hot and humid this week, but today we were blessed with refreshing, much-needed rain – a downpour with a glorious crashing thunderstorm. I really enjoy that particular drama of nature. At one point the sun broke through in the midst of the rain – so beautiful! It’s been too dry here this summer, not at all good for the crops, so today’s soaking was welcome.

Thank you for the whine time; I appreciate it.  🙂  Now for  …

A little excitement!

For those of you who enjoy the writing and creative successes of Delia Ephron – and hopefully you read my review of her new book The Lion Is In – guess what? Ms. Ephron has graciously agreed to an interview here on my blog! Yay! I’m a little excited. Well, okay, more than a little. I am squeal-in-excitement excited! She is a renowned, very talented writer and seems like such a nice lady – I am looking forward to the interview. Watch for that coming up soon. 🙂

and something for you

Yes, dear readers, there is something for you. Well, one of you. After you all get to read my interview with Delia Ephron, leave a comment and then ONE of you will win a copy of The Lion Is In from the publisher, Blue Rider Press. How great is that! The only drawback is that the publisher has stipulated the winner must not live outside Canada or the US. Please comment anyway, though, because I always want to know your thoughts and opinions. My blog has no boundary limitations. 🙂

What has your summer been like so far? Any miseries? Excitement? Surprises?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

 

Book Review: I Only Cry at Night – by P. Allen Jones

Book: I Only Cry at Night: Living With Sickle Cell Disease
Author: P. Allen Jones
Genre: biography, healthcare
Pages: 182
Publisher: CreateSpace
Released: October 15, 2011
Price: $14.95
My Rating: A must-read for everyone willing to learn about this devastating hereditary blood disorder.
 

No matter how much you think you know, or don’t know, about Sickle Cell Disease, this book will give you a perspective you cannot have aside from having the disease yourself or knowing well someone who does. There are still many misconceptions about it and much misunderstanding.

Ms. Jones has opened her heart and invited the reader into her life, the good and the bad. In a personable writing style she tells in an honest way about her upbringing in a large family that had little understanding of how to deal with Sickle Cell Disease – the sorrows, the heartaches, the chronic pain and suffering, the dashed hopes and dreams of a child. Many times she could have given up, could have despaired and not tried again, but being a determined and insightful person of faith she fought her way through everything that stood in her way. She is still fighting, but now it is not only for her own life but for the benefit of others afflicted with the devastating blood disorder that is, as yet, incurable.

Starting with her earliest memory at age four, she very visually relates her story, easily pulling the reader into each scene. You will learn about her dysfunctional family life and the prejudice she suffered at school even when she was an achiever, the inadequate medical treatment she received due to lack of understanding about Sickle Cell Disease, her brushes with death, her determination to make a success of her life as she struggled through adolescence and into adulthood with the knowledge that she would probably die young. And you will walk with the author, hoping for her through each chapter as you learn what life is like for those born with the disease. You will feel frustration because of misinformation and then satisfaction as this brave woman continues to strive to spread awareness of Sickle Cell Disease, how to treat it, and how to live with it.

Did you know that Sickle Cell Disease:
  • is found in many races throughout the world?
  • has been reported in twenty countries, and of those only a few have the needed care programs?
  • has a life expectancy of 42 for males, 48 for females?
  • is not contagious but is a genetic disease that causes terrible physical pain and complications and must be managed very carefully?
  • is not yet taken seriously enough to be funded responsibly nor studied enough to make a significant difference for the people who live with it all their lives?
  • is easily detected with a blood test that will show if a person has the disease or is a carrier?

P. Allen Jones, a Sickle Cell Disease advocate, has written a book that is well worth reading. In this book she not only shares how this disease has affected her own personal life and how she had to learn to cope with it in all areas of life, but having done a great deal of research she has included valuable information with disturbing statistics

One negative note: the first printing of her book was a frustrating disappointment to the author because of the poor editing. If you happen to obtain a copy of the first edition and can overlook the common errors that should have been picked up in editing, then do read the book for its message. There is now an improved second printing. Even if you get a first edition you will not miss the author’s sincere voice; it is strong and clear and real. You will be much better informed for having read I Only Cry At Night: Living With Sickle Cell Disease.

Visit www.pallenjones.com for where to purchase her book, and for locations of her scheduled book signings and talks.

You can find I Only Cry at Night: Living With Sickle Cell Disease listed on my BUY THE BOOK! page.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! 🙂