A Different Fair Event

Historic photo of the Pine County Fair

Historic photo of the Pine County Fair (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today is the free day of our county fair. Since Al and I had been cooped up within these four walls for a few days because of the heat, I thought he may enjoy getting out for a while. I knew that they were going to  have a special section, that would probably interest him, as it was all antique tractors and old-time farm products.

I asked him after lunch if he wanted to go after he got up from his nap, and he said yes.While Al slept, I cleaned the bathrooms and dusted and swept. This is getting to be a custom for me on Sunday afternoons anymore. Surely, I can find something else to occupy my time besides cleaning!

After he awoke, I got his scooter tore down and into the car. I got some money, for our supper. Why should I cook, when the fair can cook for me? We were already and headed out the door. We got there and there was one handicapped parking spot remaining, and I even think it had my name on it, lol, so I pulled right in. I got Al’s scooter all put back together, double checked to make sure I had not locked my keys in the trunk this time, and off we went.

I walked and he kept up. We did this real good for about ten minutes, then he went limp on me. No more sitting up straight. I kept reminding him to sit up straight, as he came close a few times to running small kids over. The farther we went, the worse it got. I stopped him a couple of times and foolishly explained why he had to sit as straight as he could, knowing inside, it was not his fault, it was the Parkinson’s. Ohhhh, I just want to scream my lungs out at this nasty old Parkinson’s. I think I hate it more than my worst enemy, wait this has become my worst enemy!

I knew he understood why he had to sit up, but let’s face it, if he could, he would. I asked him if he wanted to go home, and he said no. I asked him if he wanted to stop and eat, so he could rest off of the scooter and he  nodded yes. We went to one of the small community food booths that had chairs and benches. Al was able to pull right up to a bench and take three steps from the scooter to a sitting down position.

We were there for about an hour, because being the first day of business, these small places had not organized a pattern yet, so service was very slow. I ran into some old class mates and we mingled for a while, and then finally the food was served.

Do you remember what it was like when your children were small and they started feeding themselves? Remember their messy little faces and fingers? Well, this was Al. He had ordered cheese fries and a cheeseburger, and all the cheese was all over his mouth, chin and fingers. I had no wash cloth with me, but will now put this on my mental list of things I must carry when we are out in public. I got several napkins and cleaned him up after he ate. I think he did enjoy his meal, because not even a mouse, could find a left-over crumb!

So after our tummies were full, we started again around the circle that creates the fair. Since it was free day, we could observe the rides being put together, and I tried playing a game with Al, on what ride might be being put together, but he couldn’t tell, as his face was almost on the handle bars of the scooter. We once again replayed the sit up please game all the way around. By then, he was weak, too weak.

It is hard to judge what Al can handle. At home he sits all the time except meal time, or else he is lying on the living room couch or his bed, so when I see no tears, or hear no bad words, I figure he is having a good day. When I take him out, he has to use his power to make the scooter go, and his mind to direct the scooter. It takes no time at all for Al to be completely drained of energy. I hate not being able to take him anywhere, but I hate it when anything we do wears him out.

I asked him when we had made the second round, if he was ready to go. By then he was all tears as he had run out of strength. He shook his head no. I thought to myself, we can not make it around another time and he doesn’t want to go, so let’s go sit with the seniors who come to the fair to people watch.

On our way to the seating arena, I spot a dairy barn that serves ice-cream. It is Al’s favorite food anymore and so I ask him if he wants a shake. I know he just ate, and he is a diabetic, but with tears and weakness, I say the hell with the diabetes, for one night, and we get him a shake and me a cone.

We go to the sitting area and sit down. Al is trying to get the strength to get the ice-cream in his spoon, and I am debating internally whether to ask him if he wants my help, when up behind Al walks his old boss from his work.

Al had worked for a wonderful christian company for nine years and had the same boss, Scott. When Al saw Scott, he lost control of everything. I had never ever seen tears like this from Al before. Tremors were quadrupled and he could not sit still. I even observed one small spot on his shorts where I believe urine slipped out.

Scott was in awe. I had taken Al there to visit his old work place the first week we came back from Florida. Scott had noticed how big of changes were occurring in Al’s life. Al could no longer even attempt to feed himself, so Scott took the shake from him and fed it to him, while Al cried. Scott kept trying different methods to get Al to calm down, and be able to talk, but nothing worked. After the shake was over, Scott said a prayer there with me for Al. He bade us good night and went on his way, only to come back a minute later and get my phone number, which he entered it in to his cell, so he said he would not lose it.

It was time to go, and getting Al back to the car was a chore in itself, but with God‘s help, we made it. I tore it all apart and got it in the trunk, Al in the car, and we left.

I found out on the way home, that this was another of Al’s goals to do before he passes away, was to see his boss.

I explained to Al that he is dreaming a lot, and I think in his dreams he is having conversations with God and mom, and that although he is ready to die, God may not want him to come home just yet.

Al tells me, he if God loves him, he will take him home.

Picture It And Write It, July 8th, 2012














I dare you! Come on, floor it! Put the pedal to the metal! Come on you coward, what are you waiting for! Hit me, run over me!

These sickly thoughts were spinning round and round inside of her head. She wanted to die, and the driver was stalling. Testing her spirit, staying back, causing her legs to feel shaky, she stood her ground.

This was my life back in 2010. I had run away from home when I was 14, and had been living my life on the streets. Every part of my being had been used at the gain of others pleasures. I had been blindfolded and forced to endure the pains of needles and the relentless dreams and nightmares these illegal drugs had brought into my mind, until I had gotten to the point, I could no longer function as a person, without these administrations of drugs.

My father had been the talk of the town, a loser, an alcoholic, and my mother stayed hidden at home, behind closed drapes, hooked on drugs. Children learn from their parents, and I had learned from them that life was worthless.  They didn’t ever notice if I was there or not, so I left.

I wanted someone to care, to love me, to hold me. I was a pretty girl, slender, tall. I had what others wanted.  I spent the first night alone on the street, hidden away by the shadows of the trees behind the school-house.

The second night, I made it into the center of downtown, and was sitting on the steps of one of the businesses, when a group of young women came by me and sat down next to me. After talking for a while, I stood up with them and followed them into my stages of hell.

They took me under their wings and taught me how to dress and wear my make-up. They introduced me to their boss, who then introduced me to the life my mother knew so well. I slept all day and used drugs to stay up all night to endure the pain.

One night when I was out standing on my well-known corner, I was arrested for doing business with an under cover officer. He took me to jail, and as I had no one to call, I had to sit here and wait out my sentence.

While in there, I was able to talk to others, who had been arrested for the same things, and heard their tales and woes. I ended up in the corner of the cell vomiting, as the words I had been hearing, were the words of my life. I wanted to die, I wanted out, but had nowhere to turn. I ended up on the cot, with my eyes closed, but my ears were still honed into the conversations around me.

Two days later, I was released, and walked out into the brightness of day. I knew I didn’t want to go back to my temporary home, and I could not go home. I wandered the streets, stopping at a cafe for some food, and while there, trying to figure my way out of this. The more I thought, the more confused I became.

That night, I walked towards the interstate, and as a few cars passed by, I entered the highway and stood there, waiting to get hit, to kill me, to rid me of my pain. The car did come, but it stopped. I screamed at the car as it continued to keep its headlights centered on my person. Neither of us moved for what seemed like hours.

Another car pulled up and within seconds an officer was standing before me. He placed his arm around me, and I wanted to hit and kick him, but his words reached my aching soul. He spoke of caring, and confusion, and I heard words being spoken that I didn’t really want to take my life.

I was tired and confused and the pain was over bearing, and I found my body turning towards him, and placing my head in his shoulder. I could hear myself sobbing, and I could feel myself shivering.

The officer took me to a shelter, and after filling out the needed paper work, I was placed from there to a help-center, where I lived for the next year.

I don’t know who that officer was, but I wish I could thank him for saving my life. Soon, I would look him up and tell him thank-you in person.

Thank-you Ermilia for another chance to write for you.


Death, Ugly Or A Beautiful Word

Publicity photo of Andy Griffith, Don Knotts a...

Before I started caring for my father and then my brother, death was the last word in my dictionary. I didn’t ponder on it or even think about it. I was one of the lucky ones whose relatives lived long lives. I had only had one grandfather who had passed and I had made it through the heart ache.

Now, death is in the front pages of my dictionary, and I try hard to shove it back to where it belongs, but it  just keeps reappearing, like a bad dream. I have been now for a few years, afraid of dying.

What is it that causes me to be afraid of death? I know it is not the fact, that I will be with Jesus. This alone should make me so happy, to rid myself of all anguish on this earth. No more dieting, no more bad habits that I carry, as my smoking. I will be beautiful, but yet, I am still afraid.

When Andy Griffith passed away this week, it was a big wake-up call for me.  People that I admired, who I lived to watch on TV, are no longer  here. I have lost my parents, most of my grandparents, aunts and uncles, to the point I am now left with Al, and my kids.

I watch Al struggle with his fears of dying, and have seen him prepare himself for this big step, and I think, I can do this also. I try to tell my children how I feel about them, and how important they are in my lives. I know they listen, but they do not hear.

They are young, they are living their own lives, and raising their own children. They are trying to make a mark on this earth, just as I did.

I think that what I am afraid of is what I will be leaving behind. It doesn’t matter what I instilled in my children’s minds or didn’t instill, I believe as a parent, they will always need me at some point. It is realizing that I will no longer be here to listen to them or help them. I will no longer be able to see the grandchildren grow, marry and have children of their own.

The fact boils down to this, we are all going to die, no matter how afraid we are of it, or how much we fight it.

What matters to me anymore, is that I have told my children how I feel, and I have Jesus with me all the way. The walk to heaven will be the most honored walk-way I could ever walk.

We need to live our lives in a Godly way. Loving Jesus, making godly decisions, and spreading our love to others. I try hard, and I know I error, but it is alright, God forgives me. So from now on I will quit shoving the word death to the back of the book, and face it with respect. I will be ready when it is my turn.