Walking on the Rough Roads


I have a large interest in people who are going through rough waters who have terminal illnesses. I believe I have some empathy for others and along with that, the fact that my brother suffered from a terrible and rare disease, I am where I am today.

At first, when the patient and family learn of a disease that is incurable at this point, there is not only shock but much talk amongst each other. Very few have heard of some diseases and along with chatter comes fear and questions.

How long will the patient last? Exactly what is this disease and how did he/she get it? Do we need to think about death? Do we need to plan funerals and arrangements? The questions begin to roll and before we realize it, the patient is no longer looked at as our loving family or friend; they are the beginning of feelings of pity and sadness.The conversation of the illness is brought up in many a topics but it is talked about in almost a whisper tone.

As the months march on and new symptoms arrive, people fear death more and more. Some people don’t know how to react to this new side of life and so instead begin backing away, hoping the disease will some how disappear. Some others, will chip right in, offering help and running errands as the patient becomes more comfortable in bed.

Usually the patient is the one who is struggling to make the diagnosis real. They feel fine. Oh, of course they have suffered some symptoms, but they are still pretty good at living life.

It is sometimes easier for the patient to struggle through the symptoms or stages than it is for family and friends to watch the changes. It is sad, I agree, but it happens more often than not.

My suggestions for those who are having to deal with things like this in life is to think about what the patient likes; and what were their interests before the illness came along. Whatever your answers may be, make that a highlight. Visit your loved ones and take a magazine that holds interest for the patient, read to them about their favorite topic, take selfies of you and them, talk about things from the past that will bring smiles and laughter. If at all possible, bring a lunch to them to give the caregiver a break, or if you can, offer to pick the patient up and get a pizza and share lunch at the lake or park.

This is a sad time, I agree, but the goal is not to show the sadness at this time. There will be time for that later. Your goal is to make memories, memories for you for the tomorrows. I can’t stress this enough either; while you are visiting the patient, please don’t stand together with others in the room nor outside the bedroom door and talk about the patient like they can’t hear or comprehend, they can. Did you know that our hearing is the last thing to leave after we die? It is. So although these are rough times right now, live for the now and love life and your family, you will never regret it during these months.

Hulu Series and Halloween Treats


I have gotten in the habit of spending my evenings watching McCleouds Daughters. It’s and eight series show that is on Hulu. I am on the fifth series now. It is about a horse farm and the four women who run it. All sorts of things happen on this show, good and sad things.

I love these farm, horse shows. It not only is good and clean watching, it takes up my evenings. Have you ever seen it? If not, maybe you can start watching it. I also love Heartland. It is pretty similar. I just don’t want these series to end.

Next, I am looking forward to watch the holiday shows and movies.

A question I have for you. I am going to be staying home and passing trick or treats to the kids that live out here. They are having a Halloween walk throughout the complex. With the virus still being active, what is a good treat to hand out that keeps all safe and happy?

Image result for mcleod's daughters cast

Image result for mcleod's daughters cast

Image result for mcleod's daughters cast

Image result for mcleod's daughters cast

McLeod’s Daughters

2001 ‧ Drama ‧ 8 seasons

A Quiet, Fall Day


HELLO my friends. Today, here in Warsaw, Indiana, it actually feels like Fall outside. It is cloudy and chilly with a temperature of 56 degrees. It is days like this that I am glad I have no where I need to be.

It is quiet in here with the sounds of the clock ticking. I have always been in love with the ticking of clocks. I would invest in an old clock but I really don’t have any knowledge of how they work and so that makes my risks of buying one a pricey item if it needed repairs.

I haven’t done much today and I actually enjoy these days at times. I did make a peach cobbler though. I haven’t made but a few in my life so I hope it turns out alright. Here is the recipe I used. It has to be easy of course, because I can’t stand long with my Ataxia. Perhaps you will try it too.

RECIPE BY SOUTHERN LIVING

What could be a more perfect ending to a summertime meal than easy peach cobbler? Savor the flavors of summer with sliced fresh peaches cooking away with butter and spices. The topping can made from pantry ingredients you have on hand and peaches can easily be substituted with any fruit you have depending on the time of year. The tang of the lemon juice paired with the sweetness of the peaches is perfectly balanced with the crisp topping. Want to make dessert even better? A dollop of fresh whipped cream or cold vanilla ice cream truly makes it the perfect way to end a summer night.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 cups fresh peach slices
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Ground cinnamon or nutmeg (optional)

How to Make It

Step 1

Melt butter in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish.Step 2

Combine flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt; add milk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Pour batter over butter (do not stir).Step 3

Bring remaining 1 cup sugar, peach slices, and lemon juice to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly; pour over batter (do not stir). Sprinkle with cinnamon, if desired.Step 4

Bake at 375° for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve cobbler warm or cool.

Chef’s Notes

This dessert is perfect for entertaining guests on a summer night or even during the middle of the day at a cookout. Fresh peaches make this dish absolutely delicious. Top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and enjoy. 

Chronic Pain


It wasn’t that long ago that my friend had a surgery on both arms. Each arm was separated by two weeks of healing but the healing hasn’t completed. In fact, as of today, the patient swears the pain is worse than before the surgery.

On top of that there had been specialist ordering specific tests because as three of them said, “Something is going on inside your body, but I am not sure what is wrong.” After these tests and weeks in between doctor appointments, I have had to sadly sit by and watch this patient suffer daily.

The latest update as of two weeks ago is the patient has Spinal Muscular Atrophy. At first my eyes about bugged out of my head when I heard these words because it was just too unreal that I may be living through the nightmare my brother lived through with his Multiple System Atrophy.

You can see through the words that these two resemble each other too well. I guess this one begins within the spine and my brother’s began in the brain. Although the brain seems to intertwine in both illnesses. The nerves are involved, the unsteadiness and the chronic pain along with other similarities.

For now, we are waiting for two tests to be performed in early October. Until then, I will sit by and be supportive, thinking to myself, I can get through this with my friend, I did it with my brother.

Hugs my friends.

Who Am I?


Where the baby sleeps

Let there be peace

.When you see someone praying

Grab another’s hands

.When you see a life filling with tears

Lay your hand on their shoulder

.When you see fear in a child’s eyes

Don’t walk on by.

When you see a woman without a coat

Offer her yours

.When Christmas money is tigh

tOffer to feed the hungry

.When you hear the mighty gossip

Turn and walk away.

When you think you can’t take anymore

Heal by helping others

.When you think you’ve been dealt a bad life

Visit a long-term Veteran’s home

.Written by,Terry Shepherd

.09/11/2020

You Will Smile


I am trying to make a new habit of finding something inspiring and posting it here to share with you. This is what I found today.

Last week, I took my children to a restaurant.My six-year-old son asked if he could say grace.As we bowed our heads he said, ‘God is good, God is great. Thank you for the food, and I would even thank you more if Mom gets us ice cream for dessert. And Liberty and justice for all! Amen!’Along with the laughter from the other customers nearby, I heard a woman remark, ‘…That’s what’s wrong with this country. Kids today don’t even know how to pray. Asking God for ice cream! Why, I never!’Hearing this, my son burst into tears and asked me, ‘Did I do it wrong? Is God mad at me?’As I held him and assured him that he had done a terrific job, and God was certainly not mad at him, an elderly gentleman approached the table.He winked at my son and said, ‘I ha ppen to know that God thought that was a great prayer.’Really?’ my son asked.’Cross my heart,’ the man replied.Then, in a theatrical whisper, he added (indicating the woman whose remark had started this whole thing), ‘Too bad she never asks God for ice cream. A little ice cream is good for the soul sometimes.’Naturally, I bought my kids ice cream at the end of the meal. My son stared at his for a moment, and then did something I will remember the rest of my life.He picked up his sundae and, without a word, walked over and placed it in front of the woman. With a big smile he told her, ‘Here, this is for you. Ice cream is good for the soul sometimes; and my soul is good already.’The EndI love this story!Please keep it moving.Sometimes, we all need some ice cream.I hope God sends you some Ice Cream today!!!

Acceptance For Ourselves


I read this on my friend’s Facebook and loved it instantly because there are many words that I need to remember for myself. I thought you may like this too.

What a speech by Pope Francis yesterday! Worth a read regardless of your faith 💕🙏*You can have flaws, be anxious, and even be angry, but do not forget that your life is the greatest enterprise in the world. Only you can stop it from going bust. Many appreciate you, admire you and love you.Remember that to be happy is not to have a sky without a storm, a road without accidents, work without fatigue, relationships without disappointments. To be happy is to find strength in forgiveness, hope in battles, security in the stage of fear, love in discord. It is not only to enjoy the smile, but also to reflect on the sadness. It is not only to celebrate the successes, but to learn lessons from the failures. It is not only to feel happy with the applause, but to be happy in anonymity. Being happy is not a fatality of destiny, but an achievement for those who can travel within themselves. To be happy is to stop feeling like a victim and become your destiny’s author. It is to cross deserts, yet to be able to find an oasis in the depths of our soul. It is to thank God for every morning, for the miracle of life. Being happy is not being afraid of your own feelings. It’s to be able to talk about you. It is having the courage to hear a “no”. It is confidence in the face of criticism, even when unjustified. It is to kiss your children, pamper your parents, to live poetic moments with friends, even when they hurt us. To be happy is to let live the creature that lives in each of us, free, joyful and simple. It is to have maturity to be able to say: “I made mistakes”. It is to have the courage to say “I am sorry”. It is to have the sensitivity to say, “I need you”. It is to have the ability to say “I love you”. May your life become a garden of opportunities for happiness … That in spring may it be a lover of joy. In winter a lover of wisdom. And when you make a mistake, start all over again. For only then will you be in love with life. You will find that to be happy is not to have a perfect life. But use the tears to irrigate tolerance. Use your losses to train patience. Use your mistakes to sculptor serenity. Use pain to plaster pleasure. Use obstacles to open windows of intelligence. Never give up …. Never give up on people who love you. Never give up on happiness, for life is an incredible show.* (Pope Francis).

The Pandemic Battle Curse


I don’t know your age and maybe it doesn’t matter much when we speak about the lack of moving due to our pandemic.

I can’t believe I have been pretty much in my home since March of this year. It has been long enough now, that it feels normal to me, but what doesn’t feel normal is the aches and pains I have.

I am pretty sure that some of it is due to my age and the other part is due to lack of movement. I have aches in my knees and hands and sometimes hips. I think there are also days of slight depression as I argue with myself about getting up and moving. I am really good at making excuses up.

I don’t stand very well. It’s way too hot outside. I don’t feel good today. I’m tired. I’ll do it tomorrow. Have you said any of those things to yourself? I am not talking about an exercise program or running a five k.

I’m talking about just beginning to do some stretches here at home with some music in the background. This is when I think I realize I have depression days. A time where I know what is best for me but a matching excuse on why I can’t.

It is summer time and each summer for the past three, I have had issues with swollen ankles. My doctor says that as long as the swelling reduces each morning, there is no reason for alarm. Maybe if I moved more, I wouldn’t have this issue. I’m not sure, but if you watch TV or read articles, living is all about the exercise.

The bad thing is, I never liked exercising unless it was fun and others were involved. I love swimming and used to do that a lot until the lakes around my area became more polluted. There is the YMCA and I tried that too but didn’t enjoy it so much in the summer as the pools were packed with kids and I didn’t like being cold in the winter after leaving the building from exiting the pool.

I used to love to take walks. I actually miss it a lot. It isn’t fun to walk any longer as it is more work than pleasure because of my Ataxia. I can remember as a youth, I loved to play tether ball and bad mitton. Did you ever play either of those?

After reading back my words, I believe I am too used to sitting and a bit depressed and not very energetic. Shame on me. This is one area that no one can fix but me. It sucks when we realize the truth and then battle with ourselves on what to do with that truth. I hope that you are dealing with this pandemic much better than I am. Hopefully, one day it will be over and we can go back to our old normal.

Now, let’s talk about that weight gain throughout these months of the pandemic. No, on the other hand, let’s not. That’s a whole other story.

Are You Ready for the Day?


Today is Monday and what will this week bring for me? I know that tomorrow my experience in being a caregiver will kick back in as the friend I watched over a few weeks ago is now going to have surgery on the opposite arm.

I hope all is going to be alright. The arm that was first done began healing and then I was told a feeling of a snap was felt and ever since then, there is more pain than in the beginning.

There were no guarantees to get a permanent fix, but the surgeon was hopeful that more damage would not be done to the arm and hand and a great relief of pain. Prayers for this friend will be said.

The Ulnar nerve is what seems to be the problem.

You can’t see it good from this photo but there is a little groove that this nerve fits into and it runs from the shoulder to the tip of the last two fingers. When it isn’t working properly, tingling and numbness and much pain take over. The last two fingers don’t work well and when you are a type one diabetic on top, there are risks of the surgery not being a great success.

We just never know what life is going to throw at us do we? Some people seem to have an easy, flowing brook in their life. Smiles and good things always happening. Great sight of future dreams and then there are others who because of an illness just seem to have one issue after the other. I suppose God allows the mentally strong ones to take on this type of suffering. He uses us you know. He uses us as examples and places us in the view of those who need to see our lives and their own.

I was able to purchase a hand-help shower nozzle this past weekend. With the aid of my shower chair, I took an awesome shower with no fear of falling and I even got to wash between my toes! Believe me, when you are a high-risk faller, washing the toes can be quite tricky. Today the men who fix things in our complex are supposed to come place a grab bar I have on the wall. This will lower the risk of falling so much better. I can’t wait until it is done.

This past week, I have been hooked on watching Little house on the Prairie. It amazes me at the strength in the parents to bring their children up properly. They pay close attention and make sure all homework is done before play time. The meals are eaten all together too. It’s no wonder I seem to connect to this show. That’s pretty much how I was raised. If I didn’t bring at least a C home on report card, I could guarantee I wasn’t doing much socialization for the entire next grading period.

I can remember having to go to bed at eight on school nights in elementary, nine in seventh and eighth grade and ten in tenth, eleventh and twelfth grade. When I began working I could stay up until eleven. Did you have rules at bedtime?

We had a routine during the school year. We got home from school, we were to do our homework and then I did anything my mom left a note for, sometimes a load of laundry or iron a basket of clothes, After that was done, many times I began or fixed supper. After mom and dad got home, we ate and then us kids cleaned up and did the dishes. The rest of the evening was our free time. What were your school evenings like?

With this new schedule of virtual learning, E-learning or going to school, life should be most interesting for the schools and the parents. I am so glad my children are all grown. I pray that God shuts this virus down for our country. We have so many issues in our world, we really don’t need this on top.

Well, you each have a great day and I will talk to you later on.