Senior Years Can Be Sucky


After my brother passed, I discovered my camera. With the help of a friend, I was able to get a really nice camera and soon we were the best of friends. If I don’t have my big camera by my side; I have my camera on my cell, ready to capture a photo.

I love taking photos; but I love sharing them with people. It isn’t because I think I am so good at photography. It is because I simply enjoy being in the moment. At first when I started taking photos, I could drown out the pain I was in from losing my brother.

I can see him today. If he was still with me, he would say nothing, but he would be grinning from ear to ear, because he would know how much I enjoyed this activity.

Well, ever since I got this darn Parkinson’s, I have not been able to care for others any longer. I went from a working girl to living on the government’s disability program. I started to fret because I wondered where I was going to get extra money, since I receive little in my check.

I looked at a program that several people had directed me towards. It is called Fine Art America. This is the link for my site in this company.

http://terry-shepherd.pixels.com/

 

I did the free enrollment for a few months. I noticed that I received quite a few likes on my photos; so I decided to further my plan and pay a one-year membership, which was pretty low in cost.

Today, I noticed I have received over 34,000 likes or clicks on my photos; but sadly not a single sale. Either I have foolishly believed I had some sort of small talent, or I am not reaching anyone outside of the thousands of members who look at my photos.

I just don’t know what to do anymore to be truthful. This is the beginning of a stressful time for me. Christmas is coming. Oh the extra money that is needed for those special gifts.

Between seeing the NO SALES on Fine Art and Christmas nearing, I realize even more, I need to earn some kind of money.

I have researched so many places for at home making jobs, but find nothing legitimate. Someone mentioned I try to sell my photos to a calendar company. I looked into it through Google, but saw nothing.

Sometimes I get so discouraged. I ask God often, what do you want me to do? What am I qualified to do? All I ever knew was caring for someone else. Help show me God.

It saddens me that I am this age, older but not antique yet, and I may have nothing left to offer to help myself out. Is this the way I will go out? Just hanging around, watching TV, not being able to do something for others? Oh this darn Parkinson’s.

How do other people do it? How do women who didn’t work enough to receive a good pension or retirement fund survive today?

One side of the coin says, I am glad I was able to be a stay-at-home mommy, and the flip side says, I should have worked.

I don’t know why I am rambling on; but it feels good to get it out of my head. If any of you have any suggestions on something I can do, or some place I can look; let me know. My email is;

tellmenolies2004@yahoo.com  or you can respond through here.

I know I am not the only one in this situation, so  there has to be something somewhere.

Thanks for reading.

Below is one of my photos.

black-24

 

Old Jake


He was crazy in the head. That’s what most folks said about old Jake. He had grown up in a small town south of Chicago. He had worked in his father’s fields until his dad died. His dad discouraged him from dating. He said, he was needed more at home and besides, girls take and take, and ain’t nothing but trouble.

Myself, I believe old Jake was just plain lonely. He never even kissed a girl. After his parents were both gone, Jake didn’t want the farm anymore; so with help; he sold it. He took the little bit he got and moved himself into town.

He got an apartment and paid for the next three years ahead of time. He picked out a room that had a big window in the front yard, and that is where the old, crazy man sat most days. He would stare out the window at all the people walking by. He eyed the ladies and wished one of them was his.

He wondered what it would be like to touch their hand, or get close enough to smell their perfume, let alone sneak a quick kiss. Jake didn’t go out much. He had never learned much in social skills. He was shy and knew if he went out, he would only make an ass of himself, just as his dad said he would.

He didn’t have any bills to pay since they were included in  his room and board. His mother had taught him how to repair clothes, so when he got a hole; he just quickly repaired it. About the only time he went out was the once a week when he popped into the grocery store two doors down. He mainly bought peanut butter, some jelly, bread, cookies. He bought a quart of milk and a jug of juice. He kept these items in the little apartment size refrigerator he had in his room. The landlord did his laundry for him.

One time when he was in the grocery store, a person bumped into him, about knocking him straight down on his face. Old Jake didn’t know what to think when he composed himself and turned to see who had done it.

He looked straight into big, brown eyes, who stared back at him. She was giving him the biggest smile. Bigger than his own mother had ever shown to Jake. She said, “Scuse me sir. Me didn’t mean to run straight into you. You see, my shoestring came undone”. She pointed down at it and Jake followed her look.

He saw the shoelace was undone and without thinking he knelt down and tied it for her. When he stood back up she stood on her tiptoes and planted a kiss on his cheek. Old Jake’s face turned warm, and he raised his fingers to where the kiss remained. He touched his cheek and looked at her and his face glowed with delight.

The two felt an instant attraction. He told her his name was Old Jake. She told him her name was Sally Sue. For weeks after that meeting, Jake made sure he went to the store on the same day that he had met Sally  Sue.

She would be there, doing her own grocery shopping. One day Old Jake asked  her if they could share the cart. She nodded and smiled big for him. The two did their grocery shopping and once they were checked out; he carried her bag outside for her. Jake asked, “Are you hungry Sally Sue”? She nodded and said, “I am starved, Old Jake.”

 

jake

FWF, Writing for Kelly


 

 

 

https://magicinthebackyard.wordpress.com/the-author/free-write-friday/piano

 

THE SOUL DID SPEAK

This is a man

A very talented man

Who couldn’t speak

Communication weak

Stutter he did

Continually hid

Then one day he saw

A calling from God

He went and sat down

He made his first sound

Smooth as could be

Beauty drifted to sea

Everyone stood around

Some knelt and sat down

As the keys he did grace

A story took place

The ivory and black

Took all his fears back

As God showed him a way

Another way he could say

To open his heart I did see

A beautiful man before me.

Written by,

Terry Shepherd

 

Be Careful My Friends


Wow, the things you have to go through to try to get a little help from the government. We, as people, work from early ages until we can barely walk anymore. We pay into the system for years; but when it comes time to ask for a little in return, we are like thieves, having to prove ourselves.

We have to prove we are United States Citizens. For me, they already know that I am because I am already receiving disability and had to show my card many years ago. We can’t tell how much cash or monies we have. We have to send through the mail, paper work that shows our bank account numbers. If there are any peeping mail box people out there, how much easier is their task finding out who I am , by opening up a piece of my mail.

You have to send copies or sometimes originals in the snail mail. You have to show marriage licenses, divorce decrees. I am surprised I am not asked what brand of toilet paper I purchase.

It is a difficult process. Many eyes see this paper work, and you shake in your boots, and chew on your fingernails, waiting to see if you qualify or may be one dollar over the limit. I don’t like doing this thing of asking for extra help.

I don’t like living off of government programs. They want you to be on the verge of poverty to get help, so either way, whether you get the help or not, you never gain anything above the poverty level. I tell you, getting older or being disabled or handicap, is not my favorite cup of tea, but what are people like me supposed to do?

I can’t stand well enough to work out there. My fingers tremor too much to do fine detail work. I can barely sign my name because of the tremors. I am already embarrassed that I offer very little to the family that I am residing with. These people are trying to survive in life already, before a family member moved in.

I try to provide for my own breakfasts and lunches. I keep extra food on hand in case I can’t chew or swallow, or perhaps there will be too many carbs in their supper meal. This way I can fix a can of soup or have a peanut butter sandwich.

Parkinson’s can interfere with eating and swallowing. Add a false plate on top and suddenly eating becomes more of a burden than a joy. I choke quite a bit, so always make sure I have a glass of some kind of liquid sitting beside me.

To tell you the truth, when my brother died, my life sort of went with him. Thankfully, I got Parkinson’s after he died. Thankfully, my energy levels were better than, and thankfully, I could walk much easier than now using a cane or a scooter, but I have a sadness that seems to remain since he left. I do have days where I see lots of sunshine, but I have other days where I feel like I am in the way, or being a bother. No one has told me that yet, it is just my own feelings. Life got rougher for me. Being independent is now a thing of the past, and that saddens me, as I always looked at myself as a survivor.

It is my fault I receive very little help from the government. I stayed home as a young person. I was a mommy. I already said this in another blog so I won’t repeat myself, but the pay off, is very little monies when you get old. I worked seasonal in my antique store, and so didn’t get a retirement going either.

Be careful, young people. Set some goals, get accounts opened for your old age. Don’t count on the government helping you make even near what you did when you were working. I am not angry. I can’t go back and change things, but I see the damages now and can’t do a thing about it.

 

wp-1446596201677.jpg

A Day of Shock


 

Things are changing in my life. It is getting more difficult to move and my steadiness is pretty unsteady. I have given notice to my landlord and to my work place. I will be moving in to my daughter’s home in Kentucky at the end of August.

Two days ago at work, my boss; during a very busy few minutes, came up to where my trainer and I were sitting entering the several people standing in line wanting to see case workers.

I sit right beside my trainer so she can watch me for mistakes and correct them before damage is done. My boss said to my trainer, that I was not to be on the computer any longer since I had given notice.

I was shocked and frightened to hear this because I struggle daily to do my job. I like sitting at the computer entering data because there is barely any walking involved. When I over heard this I became worried.

When the crowd disappeared I stepped back from the computer and went to the boss. I asked her if I had heard her right and she said yes. She said she was going to train me on something new and I asked why.

With no reply I voiced my opinion which must have been a bad thing. I told her I didn’t see any purpose in training me for 10 hours, which is what I had left. I told her I preferred to spend those last ten hours at the computer because I knew I could handle it.

Obviously she didn’t like it and when I went in to work this morning, the second boss called me into the private office and told me because of my health issues, they were not going to hold me until Friday of this week, which was to be my last day. They were letting me go today.

I was upset and humiliated because I have never been let go from a job; plus I knew the boss must have not like me telling her my thoughts. Maybe I was wrong, maybe not, but it is over. I was sent home.

Now here I sit at the computer which is mine writing this. I guess I can start separating and packing what I will be taking with me to my daughter’s and what I am going to be parting with a day early.

I don’t feel any better after writing this and I  hoped I would. I have learned a valuable lesson. Keep my mouth shut. Do what others ask; even if I have fears or opinions. The good things that came from this job is my new experience with data entry and the fact that on my chart it states clearly that I was released from my job due to health reasons.

 

A Day in the Neighborhood


This past weekend my girlfriend came and picked me up to go to her house. I realize it is not that easy for her to do. The back issues from sitting in the car, the over-bearing heat of this past couple of days, gas and miles on the car. She is pretty terrific to do that.

When I arrived home yesterday, Sunday, I was tired; but then again, when am I not tired anymore. I pretty much rested on my bed and watched TV except for potty breaks and fixing a bite to eat for supper.

This morning it was back to work. I woke up feeling the best I had felt in over a week. Bubbly, outlook was great. I was very thankful. When I arrived at work, I had no problem  opening the heavy, outer door. A lot of times I tug and tug, because the Parkinson’s causes me to be so weak.

Today, I thrust it open and walked in with a smile. I was great until about lunch time. Suddenly the tiredness trickled back in. I began getting the electric shocks in my right fingers again. When I get those, they remain for  hours, so even though I am home now, my finger feels like someone bashed it.

I didn’t really have any tremors today; which was nice. When I got up out of my seat to come home, I strained a little. Lately when I start to rise, I look like a yo-yo, where the owner can’t make up his mind to let the string down or pull it up. I can bounce up and down a couple of times before my legs finally hold me up steady. I get terribly embarrassed although I realize I can’t help it.

Although the physical work is not difficult, there is something about the job that stirs my Parkinson’s up. I don’t know what is causing it, but I wish I didn’t work, and I wish I could rest when I feel the need to rest. At this point, rest is the best medicine I have been able to get a hold of.

I pray tomorrow is different; I will be optimistic, but I won’t fool myself because I am quickly learning; Parkinson’s has a mind of its own.

heather 2

A Day Off


Today is the fist day of a three-day weekend. What was I going to do with myself? It isn’t like I have been working for so long that I forgot what it is to be home each day. I suddenly got a little sad and lonely.

I had some health  news yesterday that I didn’t care for. I will tell you that I was definitely without question diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. It wasn’t so shocking. I guess I was sort of wondering if I could be next in line since four family members prior to me had it.

There is a big part of me that doesn’t want to think about it. I don’t even want to deal with it. It could play a major part in my life or maybe just annoying. I don’t want to deal with this any my diabetic neuropathy at the same time. It is almost too much. I know I have think about it, but not right now.

I decided to get the hell out of the house for a while. I am working in an office and not wearing scrubs or common clothing as in health care. Carson’s was having a sale on top of a clearance sale; so I got dressed and headed out there. My girlfriend that I visited last weekend helped me out with some clothing, but I needed a few more pieces, or at least I thought.

http://www.carsons.com/?utm_source=YAHOO&utm_medium=CPCTEXT&utm_campaign=AS&CID=YAHOO-CPCTEXT-AS&kwid=b9d4738b370c4813b2611d4263693552

I made sure I ate a snack before leaving so I wouldn’t have to deal with low sugars. I had a great time and for an hour, I forgot about the doctor. I found a cute pair of sandals that I can wear to work. I found a set of summer sheets for less than $17.00, that had been $50.00.

I purchased 2 pairs of summer pants. Capri’s, one is white and the other pair is black. I found a few shirts to match. I then ran to another store and invested in a new mattress cover. Mine was getting shot and with being older, I want the best sleep possible.

I made a single purchase  at another store this past week. Something I can treasure forever and ever. I guess when you know you are ill, you try to do a little, tiny bit of splurging, because we all know that illness means money spent for things doctors recommend.

I came home and proudly tried on my shoes and clothes. I felt different. I felt pretty. The one pair of white pants I bought have huge bling on the back pockets. I can’t help myself, I am wearing them to the Moose tonight.

Well, now that excitement is back to normal, on to other things; but I will treasure this past week for all times. Independence is something we all take for granted. You never know when you may hear words that might interfere with your livelihood, so you want to make sure you say no when need be, live life and give thanks for being able to get up out of bed today.

Well, off to take a wee nap before I leave. I can take a nap after I get home from work, but thus far I have not. I miss those resting times though. I feel much more tired, and my tremors definitely kick in when I am tired. So see you soon everyone. Have a great fourth of July, if you celebrate, and take note of all the good in your day today.

mammath cave 3A photo of Mammoth Cave I took when I was living near my beautiful daughter.

I Feel Like I am Going to Hollywood


Well, I have a need to celebrate, but no one to celebrate with. Will you join me in celebration of being a part of the working force again? I went to the meeting this morning.

I took the time to curl my hair and apply make-up. Gee, I hope they don’t expect that of me every day. lol. Anyways, the meeting only lasted about 20 minutes. I met with the head manager of five districts along with two of her partners.

I got asked various questions such as, what am I good at? What kind of furthering education would I like? Could I use any updating of computer skills? The questions went on and on and then it was over. I could breathe.

We all shook hands and I told them thank-you for taking the time to see me. They said they would let me know their decision. Well all I could do was wait. I was not going to get on my knees and beg. I knew God was in control of my future.

I hate waiting, it is one of my weak spots in my life, although I am better than I  used to be. I was up at the front door with my hand on the door knob and I heard my name called. I turned around and the lady I had been working with came to me and grabbed my hand and started shaking it. ” You did a fantastic job! They really liked you. You are in and if everything goes on schedule, you will start Monday”.

Wow, I was blessed beyond. Not only am I going to get a technical school education. I will be the one getting paid for going. When I am complete with the training I will become certified.

Oh, what am I training in, you ask? I will be the receptionist assistant, along with training on Microsoft from the bottom up. When I am finished, I will be knowledgeable enough to be certified and make much more money.

So come on over. Help me celebrate. Pull up a chair and grab a glass of wine. Cheers my friends!

wine