How long has it been since you’ve been to Disneyland or Disney World? Let’s take a trip. Well, let us at least watch a Disney movie together. They always make me feel better, especially when the bad guy/gal is vanquished. Walt’s films are so much like our lives. There is tension, love, laughs and resolution after struggle.

There’s always a villain. I’m certain each of us has memories of these particular fictional characters. Some of us hid behind our box of buttered popcorn at the movies when villainous characters like Cruella appeared on the screen and others who read the original book by Dodie Smith, published in 1956, titled The Hundred and One Dalmatians, shivered beneath their sheets.

They say the secret to any good work of fiction is conflict. That may provide an interesting read or view, but in real life it’s a bit tiresome, often maddening and always exasperating. Quite often my youngest two grandchildren and I watch movies. The other day I asked my 7 year-old granddaughter, who had already seen the film we were going to watch, “Who is the Cruella de Vil in this movie?” She knew exactly what I meant and pointed out the “conflict inflictor” to me. That minor incident made me wonder how many Cruella’s each of us have in our lives. These villains often masquerade as harmless individuals, hiding their identities, quite unlike Cruella, Captain Hook, the wicked step-mothers scattered in the films or those deadly yet beautiful queens. Those beautiful faces and costumes make it a bit more difficult to unveil their true identities. If you watch closely, however, their eyes always reveal an evil heart.

These particular individuals must be cold-hearted, self-centered and devoid of understanding. I hate to realize how many of these individuals exist off the screen, in real life. I’m usually a positive person but have become cautiously so after a long life, half of it lived with chronic pain. I have discovered some medical folks fill this description as they believe they must retain a certain amount of distance from you or your problems. Others may be friends who have grown tired of your problems or even family members who just don’t like the way you appear, explain what you’re going through or even resent your achievements made all the better by your ability to overcome. There are thousands of reasons others become insensitive. Not all of them are out to kill Dalmatian puppies to get their soft fur for a fur coat, but here in the real world, their motives are varied. Some of the individuals who hurt us do so out of pure ignorance. Others do it out of their own self-centered view of life. I know, few are mad puppy chasing freaks with half white hair and half black, but exaggerations do make the point. In the real world, many of the villains we meet come in plain, ordinary “wrapping.”

Most of us who live with chronic pain or illness have experienced the painful remark of a friend, the loss of others because they simply thought we were faking. I thought it would be enlightening to look at some possible solutions for those of us who have run into or been run over by others who simply don’t get it, this way of life that has been thrust upon us.

1.  How do we deal with self-centered individuals who simply aren’t interested in having their lives disrupted by the grim realities which affect many of us? Yes, I realize each of us will respond differently in this situation but there are some safeguards we can each use to protect ourselves.  I have often had long talks with myself, sternly reprimanding my own hurt feelings and saying, “Hey, I’ve got enough to deal with without putting up with extra crap.” This is no time to be a door mat; don’t allow it.

That’s when the gate is closed and you have to limit your exposure to certain individuals. Think of it as quarantine for your protection. You can hope they will eventually learn to be wiser but also realize it may be hard won for them. Just be there for them if their lives change and understanding is discovered. Everyone can change and not all relationships are forever. When this individual is a relative, it’s more difficult to distance yourself, for instance on holidays, but it can be done. Thanks to mean old Cruella, I must add one codicil to this one: never forgive them if they have ever stolen a puppy from you. After all, we have to draw the line somewhere.

2.  Some of the people in our lives are just shallow, thoughtless goofballs. They don’t have malice; they’re just stupid. These folks can be educated if you find the relationship worth the trouble and effort it would take. Perhaps you could see them as a challenge and help to wise them up. This one is very individualized based on their age of maturity, your affection for them and their nuisance level. Many people in this world haven’t gone through anything as difficult as you and I have.

3.  The Captain Hooks of this world want to get you. After all, taking a hook to small, innocent little boys? This is not a pretty sight. Since you can’t fly away like Peter Pan, you have to flee as best you can. Sometimes these captains take the form of doctors who must prove they are right and you are wrong. They can also disguise themselves as well-meaning neighbors who show up with weird herbs, left over drugs or homemade potions for you to try. Now that last one does sound more like the wicked witch, so beware. Don’t borrow their medicine or take their advice until you check it out or study about it for yourself. The internet makes this so much easier than in the days of thatched cottages and morphing forms. Stay away from those black caldrons. This category would also include those individuals who are simply jealous because they perceive you are getting attention for being ill. I know it’s twisted but each of us know at least one of these individuals. They are the folks who must “one up” you. If you have a broken leg, they have a cracked skull. Their mirror on the wall definitely tells them, “You are the sickest one of all.” Run, limp or crawl away from these individuals. They’re in a contest that cannot be won.

4.  Beware the mind benders. These are the often well-meaning relatives or friends who are convinced it’s all in your imagination, this whole pain issue. They say cruel yet kind sounding things like, “Oh my dear, you just have to think a bit more positively.” “You simply need to get out more.” My personal favorite is, “Well, you look just great.” They are really thinking, “She can’t have anything wrong with her…she’s smiling.”

This type of villain is, I believe, afraid of you. They are the type of individuals who don’t even want to think about disease, pain or misery. They are afraid you will change their life in some way, spoil a good time or maybe, just maybe be infectious.

I’m reminded of a night many years ago when my husband, Jim, was doing the night shift at a local prison when we lived in California. A famous murderer (a real life villain) was brought to him for nursing care when he kept complaining to the guards. Mr. Infamous told Jim he had a hernia and it needed to be repaired.  In the middle of the night? Jim explained the facts to him after examining him and told the guards to take him back to his isolated cell. As he was leaving, this mad murderer said, “Oh, that’s all right. I’ll just heal it with my mind.” Jim replied, “Okay. Good luck with that.” Don’t misunderstand. I do believe in divine healing but not when it comes to hideous mass murderers.

5.  There is always a lesson to be learned in these merry films, in spite of the conflict. We must all work on ourselves, our attitudes and our daily struggles. We can’t focus too much attention on all the negative forces that are pulling on us. We already have disease and pain and don’t need to pick up another burden, whatever hideous form it takes. We would probably hurt ourselves even more in the process. Let’s lift only that which we must. For most of us, life offers plenty, an abundance of plentiful expectations just to live a seemingly normal existence.

Fear, frustration, worry and regret are very powerful forces. They are forces made worse by those evil doers. We need all the sunshine we can get, not darkness. Look for the joy, turn off the madness. Whistle while you work, hum a happy tune or look for laughter from a child, a pet or any source that works for you. How about popping a Disney movie into the DVD player?


  1. Oh Sue, this was so excellent and you just the nail on the head. I really liked No. 3…very relateable to my life right now. So nice to have you back again in the saddle in your new home. You were missed !!!!
    Speaking of home, I hope you are nearing the end of all your renovations this summer. I hope it all hasn’t been too hard on your body. Been going to new drs hoping to find a good new one who listens. I have had such a difficult time finding a caring Dr. In Phoenix area.
    I had wrote reply on your previous blog but then it disappeared!!!
    Hope all are doing okay..
    JO xx

    • Jo, First of all..the count on the last blog was up this morning, so maybe your lost comment has been found. I’ll check after writing this. I hope this blog wasn’t too negative but I know each of us have to face so many of these types of individuals that I often long for a bubble to live in. Oh, there must be a smart and caring rheumy in your huge area. Let’s pray you find one and soon. It’s awful how a non-caring doctor can make us feel like we have no value. On the other hand, a kind, intelligent doctor who believes us and sees our suffering can be such a blessing. Your “Captain Hook”, I hope you can stay away from this individual. It seems we often put up with too much from others. We were told as children to be polite, etc. but our battle is great as we fight pain and it does wear us away and we need all the help we can get. My dear girl, do what works for you and is best for your welfare. You have great value. Love, Sue

    • Hey Jo:
      My old Rheumy (who I LOVED) was Ralph Bennett. If you can get in to see him, he is awesome, a TRUE specialist who listens. I saw him in Mesa but he has offices all over. Check him out !

      • Hey Tonie!! Thanks for the recommendation. I forgot you lived out here in AZ. I will look him up and see if he is in my Cigna plan. I hope so. I have had such a hard time finding a rheumy who is not dismissive of my symptoms and who believes that Fibro is a REAL Illness. Hope you are feeling a bit better with your feet and the other health issues. Thanks, Tonie…I will let you know if I get in with him. Take good care…….Jo

      • Hey Tonie….Guess what? I have an appointment with Dr. Ralph Bennett for November 13th. It turns out he was in my plan. Thanks for the recommendation. I am very excited and look forward to this appt. That was the earliest date they had open. He has an office 15 minutes from my home in Glendale. So glad I spoke up. The best docs I have seen in the past have always been recommended to me by a friend. Hope the injection has helped your foot some by now. I had a cortisone injection in my left foot for a tibial tendonitis. It helped me for that problem.
        Hope everyone is having a good weekend so far….

  2. WOW !! I LOVE LOVE LOVE the picture at the top that has been added to your wonderful blog ! I think this new format is great and much better than the old.
    All of the above for me, all at once usually 🙂 Our BIGGEST villain is our sickness I think, and then all the people and relatives we have to deal with. Along with the situations we are in. I pray you are having a better time of it. Are you feeling better ? Hope so…
    Love ya

    • Tonie, Glad you like the picture portion. That was Natalie’s idea and she gets all the credit. I like it , also.This Cruella is a scary wench, isn’t she? Good for both Natalie and I to get positive re-enforcement. Have I missed your visit to the foot doctor? You’re right, of course, the biggest villain we face is living within us and it’s our poor diseased bodies. Seems kind of disloyal, don’t you think? Hope Jo can get in to see your former doc in AZ. I remember how much you thought of him.
      Am I feeling better? Well, wish I could say yes. I’ve done something to my back and can hardly manipulate but it will get better with heat and rest…if only I could get some. Today’s and yesterdays adventures have had us enter a whole new phase…plumbing. Apparently when the carpenters were rebuilding the burned portion of the house, they hit the wall where our ancient porcelain toilet is situated hard enough to jar a few joints, caskets, etc. loose. I had a flood in the upstairs bathroom this afternoon and knew immediately, two things: one, that was too much water to be from a small dog dish and two, it was more urine than our two little dogs combined could produce, plus it didn’t have an odor. Bottom line, it’s cheaper to buy a new toilet than have this old, interesting one rebuilt. That’s all I have to say on this subject except AAAGGGHHH!!!! Later…love you gal, Sue

      • Hey mama ! Get you one of those higher setting toilets that will kinder to you sitting on it ! I wish I had done that when I replaced the one in here, but oh well. You better finish with that house soon or you will have rebuilt it all !! I am sorry your back is out of whack. Be praying harder for you ! Nope my apt is in the am. 8:30 and it is a 45 min drive and I don’t really know where I am going so prob gonna leave a lot earlier than I need to. I will give you a report when I get home. Had another interesting day with Ms Alice, and her daughters ! They are all fun !! Sleep well !
        Love you

      • Thanks Chris:
        I am home now. Just got a shot in the heel (steroids, our new best friend!) and new recommendations on exercises and orthotics. Have another apt for 6 wks, but he thinks it will be better

  3. Ah Thursday and a new blog from Sue. Things are getting back to normal. I must be lucky I don’t have any Cruellas in my life any more. I had one a few years ago though, so know what you are talking about. The people in my life now are wonderful. I am continuously amazed at how thoughtful and caring the people are on this blog. I hope your home gets fixed up soon and things smooth out for you. Janet

    • Janet, you warmed my heart by what you said. I must admit it is nice to feel appreciated. How are you doing? Are you handling the heat okay? Isn’t it great to be back together,,,all of us…still a few left to return to the fold. Love, Sue

  4. Hi Sue, I know your house is old but do you really have caskets in the upstairs? Last week dh was in the hospital for his copd and the relatives went into action. Like ” does he need a new hospital, Dr., diet and on and on. The stress of him being so sick and having people talk like I am not in the room combined with the extra pain was just to much. I like to live a quite life but that is not possible. I was brought to tears which I really hate but enough is enough and tears were better than blood flying all over. I finally got out to dig in the yard and Blu and Angel sat and watched me like ” there goes that crazy mommy digging up the yard again”? I think that I told you about my new hobby? Metal detecting and I have found it a way to relax and be with nature. Of course it makes me hurt more but it is worth it. I hope everyone enjoyed their summer and haven’t been in to much pain.
    Love, ^j^ Barb

    • Barb, there you are!! Indeed, tears probably do beat flying blood because it’s your own as opposed to someone else’s which would not be the way to spend your week…behind bars. I hope your DH is better and the relatives have cleared out somewhat. It’s the old, “if I had a nickel” for all the advice I’ve received over the years I’d be a rich woman. Isn’t it odd how some people are too dense to realize you’re in the room and know far more about the situation than they care to or will ever know? You mean Blu doesn’t help you dig? What a sweetheart he is. George learned yesterday how to go down our indoor stairs. A few days ago he figured out how to ascend the flight but was afraid of descending..not now.
      No actually, as you know, caskets was a typo and I meant gaskets but we do have three, no four urns and two paper bags with remains. Don’t forget the dead rat in the attic that the firemen left up there. Good to hear from you and I don’t remember hearing about the metal detecting but I’ve always thought that looked like fun. Have you found anything interesting thus far? How’s your health these days..relatives aside? Much love, Sue

  5. Tonie dear, stay safe tomorrow. Funny you should say that about the higher toilet. That’s what I ordered. The plumbers said they both have them and one of them has bad knees and it’s so much easier. Funny how a couple of inches can make such a difference. That’s why I had to give up my little gardening stool on wheels and buy a chair height one. Jim borrowed, well actually stole my newer bench which the kids and I called my peeing bench because the plastic allowed water in and I had to take a drill to the bottom so the rain could get out. Sooooo I told him to keep it and I ordered a new one for me and will try to keep it out of the rain this year. I just asked the plumbers, “Will my feet hit the floor?” They assured me it would. I like our old toilet because it’s old and weird, like us, but the bowl has some mini cracks and was hard to keep clean..I was always squirting the bowl clean with bleach into it. In CA we had one with the box above out of porcelain and a chain pull on it.
    Try to get a bit of pleasure into your day tomorrow, okay? Love you, Sue

      • Thanks Lyn. It sounds odd to say but I’m looking forward to it.. so much as well as a new toilet. If only all of this didn’t cost so much. Whoosh. Sue

    • Hey Sue. 🙂 you can always use your old toilet like one person out here does. THey have several of the “thrones” sitting on a hill in their yard with flowers planted in the bowl and back. Hey recycling at it’s best. Like I told Chris, shot in the heel, new ortho recommendations and exercises. He said it should be okay if I do what he said. AND I splurged ($$and nutrition) stopped at the Waffle House and had my fav breakfast . Eggs, Sausage, hasbrowns with onions, toast and coffee !! Have wanted to do that for a while. THen stopped by the church to practice some songs for the revival. Now I am just resting some. Have done the towel thing with my foot and hopped on here to see what is going on. You will love the new toilet. My sister has one and the church has one. It really is better on your knees.
      Love ya

      • Tonie, that sounds like the visit went well. I hope the shot helps and the other problems respond to his treatment…quickly. Your breakfast sounds delicious. Now I’m hungry. I am glad that trip is over for you.
        A couple of folks around here have planted toilets outside, also but I’m afraid it would be a bit much for Jim. One of those neighbors even has a brass bed planted outside. Hope you take the time to rest your foot and all this becomes part of the past. Thinking of you with love, Sue

      • HA !! Well Sue glad to hear it is not just a Southern thing with the toilets and beds. They have those around here as well as old wheelbarrows full of flowers. I must admit I really like the wheelbarrows, especially when they are turned up like you dropped it. My foot feels a bit better today, still getting them sharp pains in it though. I am so tired today. Talked to Millie until after 11:30 and was tired anyway. My phone started ringing at 9:30 so no sleeping in. But I think I will have a nap soon.

  6. Oh Sue I re-read Cruella de Vil and there is so much in there that I can relate to. Thank you for writing it down as it makes my life easier to know other people are going through the same pain caused by words or actions that family and friends say and do. You are a joy in my life & I always feel strength to keep going once I read your blog. God Bless XXX

  7. Sue what a captivating blog. I’ve had some of theses people in my life at different times.ive been very careful who I talk to and say things to becos of it. You think they understand then they say something which means they haven’t all along! They are gone….and I like to think they are the poorer for it!!

    No more happening to you for goodness sake….just have this new toilet and no more to happen….ok
    I’d like to feel that you were seeing some end to it all and all these new aches and pains to go for you

    Our Tonie is off to see specialist today hope all goes well
    I’m feeling a bit sick today ,proberly the tabs Im on for my reflux,never done before tho
    DH on new bp tabs see how they go with side effects
    It was so hot here yesterday and muggy last night,supposed to be a drop of 10c today
    What’s happened to Annie and Lyn and Laura

    • Chris, How right you are. I think we’ve had enough, also. I hope you feel better with the lower temps. Are your meds for reflux new to you? First time? Could it have been something you ate to make your tum upset? It is coming out now that too many of the meds we take for acid reflux, heartburn, etc. are causing problems because they interfere too much with our food digestion and some have been blamed for causing an infection called C. Diff. Oh goody, something else to worry about. That’s kind of the way with out old house…you fix one thing and that causes some new problem; bodies, houses, old cars…all need fixing so what are we to do.
      I just noticed when I was talking about needing a new toilet I talked about worn and torn “caskets” when I really meant gaskets. Hmm? Morbid error indeed.
      As far as our returning friends, you can see Lyn is here, Annie called me the other night, think of her she’s in a bit of a funk and Laura, she’s up to her doggy ears with pets who need tending. Let us know how you’re doing. I’m going to try for a quiet day today..see if I can pull it off…simply must. Love, Sue

  8. Sue, it is unfortunate we need to be reminded to watch out for these villains, but indeed we do. As if we didn’t have enough on our plates. I’m not dealing with any right now – at least that I know of – but that villain we live with, yes it has been rearing its ugly head more the last month or so. Yesterday was another example. I was feeling good about getting things done around here in the morning when it snuck up on me. I thought a rest would help, but not quite enough. A bit frustrating. But there was good news later in the day as well. Those of you on facebook already know – and I thank you for all the ‘likes’ and comments. DD took her test, passed, and is now a certified Clinical Medical Assistant! Such a relief. Now to find her a good job! Happy Friday, everyone! And a great weekend ahead! (Oh, Sue, if you didn’t see it, I did leave a small reply under your comment above.)

    • Lyn, I am sorry to hear you’ve had some painful times lately. It’s always there, isn’t it, lurking in the shadows. I pray it passes very soon for you. I am so thrilled for DD. She must feel a sense of accomplishment about passing her tests and having her certificate. She should be able to find a job very soon. As medical costs rise, they are tending to use more CMA’s with the patient care and having nurses be in more administrative roles, even on the units in a hospital. Hope SB is enjoying college and all is fun for him at this time in his life. Have a wonderful weekend with your family or at least part of the family. I’ll be busy looking for normal….Love, Sue

  9. Sue:
    I surprised Millie with copies of your first 2 blogs. She was SO happy ! She says she is sad when they end cause you can really tell your stories. You have a talent , she says, that is so intense with your writing. Her BP meds were making her bp so low that she stopped taking them. She keeps records of her vitals and takes them to the Dr. Without the meds she was normal. SOOO, when they ran her KIDNEY numbers …she was fine !! Seems the kidney disease was related to the BP problems. AND the same meds was what Bill was on and his Dr called him and told him not to take it because the creatine numbers were way off. Bottom line, we have been praying for her to be healed and I say PRAISE THE LORD , cause He did it !! She sounds so much livelier. I was SOO tired after church (good service ) but let her talk then sacked out. Brutie was up and down all night growling over a piece of rawhide bone they have been passing back and forth. I give them both one, and they just SHARE one instead. I think I will just shut my bedroom door from now on and they have to stay put til I LET them out !
    Well, I am ready for that nap I was speaking of earlier. Talk to you soon. Hope you have a great day.

    • Tonie, Oh my. That is scary interesting about Millie and very wonderful, too. I share your and her relief but am afraid for so many folks who take these drugs. Do you know the name of the B/P med? Now I’ll have to check Jim’s medicine cabinet for his B/P meds, and pass it on to all who read this. Fine too that she sounds so much better. Brings up same old question, is it helpful or harmful about all meds.
      It was sweet of you to share the new blogs with her. She is such a dear lady. Hope you get some rest today. Love, Sue P.S. Wonder where Jennie is?

  10. Jo, how wonderful that you got in to see Tonie’s former rheumy. I know she thinks highly of him. I believe he is worth waiting for. Good, good, good. Take care of yourself dear girl and watch out for those Cruella’s out there. Fondly, Sue

    • Thank you, Sue… is VERY good Tonie’s old rheumy is in my Cigna plan and his office is really close to my home. I am excited, and I know the time will fly by to November. It will be almost Thanksgiving by the time of my appointment date!! Yikes!!! I do remember Tonie speaking fondly of him. I sure have had a run of bad doctors, and that is putting it mildly. Maybe I will start I to make some progress with my conditions. I hope you had a more restful and peaceful day today. And I am staying away from the Cruellas …I think I got rid of them all, but sometimes one will rear its ugly head . Take care of yourself and give that cute little “George” a cuddle for me. Have a good night..
      With Love……Jo

  11. I do my best to take in comments regarding my journey with Chronic Pain~finally learning to say a true Thank you when people express genuine concern and for any other comments–I walk away and say “Lord help them and help me too.” Coping with non-stop Pain~~a constant process.

    • Martha, welcome to this venue. Everyone, Martha is a FB friend and writes a blog about her chronic pain, also. Maybe she will tell you all about it. I know, it’s a sort of weeding process for each of us in how, who and never why, isn’t it? Hope your weekend is going fairly well. Fondly, Sue

  12. Hi Martha good to see you …..sorry you have problems

    Well DH new bp drug is pritor or thelmesartan….have to see how it goes
    Sue I’ve taken these drugs for reflux before but they make my mouth so much dryer and then throat sorer it counteracts the drug anyway.and make me feel nauseated . The reflux makes my throat sore and with the sjogrens it makes it worse.i keep swallowing Gaviscon to coat the throat. And they do upset my IBS as well
    Well I hope you got your quiet day Sue..

    Jennie you been watching Last night of the proms? I always watch the end bit with the well known ones.good to see a female conductor this year
    Well folks I’m gonna try and sleep now

    • Hi Martha:
      Glad you joined us. Yes we would like to hear all about you. It IS hard to understand who to keep and who to throw away.

      Sue I will find out the name of her BP meds, I knew you would want to know and now I have forgotten.
      Dear sweet Rosie has passed on. She went on Wed morn aroun 8:45. And also around the same time, Tammy was bitten by a rattlesnake at her house 2 x’s. She is in the hospital. Bit her rt foot, she said she had been given 10 vials of anti toxin. Pray for her to get well and also to deal with her sisters’ passing.
      Love to you all

      • Oh Tonie, I’m so sorry Rosie has passed and how awful for Tammy, your old pastor, to have to deal with such a painful thing while also coping with the loss of her sister. I pray Tammy gets many more vials of the anti-toxon to get her through this. We’ll chat later…Sue

  13. Jo:
    So glad you got Dr Bennett, please tell him hello for me and I MISS him ! WOnder if he has thought about relocating here HMMMM….He DID say he had been through here and how lovely it was 🙂
    Yes the shot is helping very much, the pain is tolerable now and with the exercises I think it will do.
    I just saw a VERY young Jeff Bridges on Lassie ! Funny ! Too bad you are not going into Dobson, his nurse there is such a hoot ! I called her “Nurse Ratchet” and she called me “Pothole” (remember the commercial where the pothole talks with a southern accent ?) Anyhow we had a blast when I went in to see him. Just take your list and tell him all your probs. He is great, I hope you like him as much as I did. Takes a while for him to open up so don’t think he is a snob.
    Well gotta get ready for church.

  14. Just tried to post, asked for my password after writing to everyone, then told it wouldn’t be posted, can my day get any bloody worse…doubt it. Don’t know if this will be read, find out later….Jennie xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    • Jennie, don’t get too discouraged. This will be natural before long. I’m sorry you had a crappy day. I was that way yesterday, cried half the day. It seemed that everything I touched didn’t work, was broken or too heavy for me to life. Hate those days. Quiet around here today…what is that sound??? Silence. Forgot what it sounds like. Still no street, house is primed and soon to be painted after some carpentry on the front and back porches. New toilet to be installed next week so had to clean bathroom floor and make room for the workmen…they’ll just mess it up again, I know. Would love to catch up with you on here or on FB. Hope you’re still having indian summer. much love, Sue

  15. Chris, I hope things are going better for both you and DH. Time will definitely tell with his B/P meds. I admire you for drinking Gaviscon like you do for your IBS and the burning in the throat. SJogren’s does indeed cause so many problems..I know. Dry eyes, sore throat, etc. I have really pushed my hydration and try to take a drink of juice or seltzer each time I wake up during the night and also try to remember to drink more during the day. I hope your weather is on your side right now. Winter is coming…are we ever ready? You haven’t mentioned your DD lately and how she is doing. Poor girl has had a year, hasn’t she? Thinking of you sitting in your peaceful, lovely garden. Love, Sue

  16. Good evening, everyone. Just a short note. I heard from our Annie this morning, and she is going through a rough patch right now. I’m sure she would appreciate prayers.

    • Lyn, This is similar to the remark I made yesterday after a conversation with Annie a couple of nights ago. I called it a funk but we basically both see she is in a valley right now, a down time and indeed she has our love and our prayers of encouragement. Each of us know what those times are and certainly can offer her a hug of understanding. Love, Sue

  17. Morning all:
    Well lazy morning for me, I slept until I was ready to get up (rare for me anymore) which was after 10, but I feel refreshed somewhat. Now I am getting ready to go out and build me a roof over my porch 🙂 Gonna put the roof together and my nephew will put it up for me anyway. Shouldn’t be too tough, I have a pneumatic nailer so no hammering for me !
    Talked to Tammy yesterday. She told me that snake actually ATTACKED her. Bit her twice, and was still biting her sandal when she ran out of it, leaving it in its jaws. She is doing better but says it is very difficult to walk. Has to go in for more bloodwork and more anti-venom today. I can’t imagine ! I hate snakes so much. But she lives way out in the Foothills against the Mtns behind PIR (Jo knows where I mean) and it is very rugged and desolate. Scorpions, Tarantullas and snakes. But so beautiful. Hopefully she will sell it soon and move somewhere with a little less wildlife 🙂
    Prayers for you all this am. Had wonderful services this weekend. Love the speaker and his wife, he is hilarious but such a good man of GOd. They had a good prayer over me for my daughter and I feel something is about to happen. I really need His comfort today.
    Pray you all have a good day (JENNIE) and things go well for you. Say a prayer I can concoct this cover !!
    Love to all

    • Tonie…that is awful about the snake bite. I hope she will be okay. Oh I am so afraid of them. Living by the foothills of the mountains is beautiful but along with that beauty comes all sorts of critters. That is where the snakes scorpions, mountain lions, and other creep y crawlers dwell. The most I ever see where I am are coyotes and javelinas. (Tonie…have you seen havelinas while living in AZ?) Ugly0
      little things!

      I hope dr. Bennett doesnt move away out by you. If I lived closer to Dobson office I would go check out Nurse Ratchett. Thanks for thev heads up on Dr. Bennett.

      Glad your foot is feeling less pain. Cortisone sure dies help …I just cannot have them anymore.
      My prayers for all on here in need today.
      hope you all have a good and peaceful day.
      LJo xxxxxxxxxxxxx

      • Gosh…sorry for all the typos I just noticed. I hate my new smartphone to text on. (I am blaming it on my phone)

      • Jo, That’s a girl. Always blame inanimate objects because they can’t talk back..or at least they shouldn’t. Prayers and hugs. Sue

      • Jo:
        Yes I have seen and SMELLED javelinas. Also saw them in Germany where they are ENORMOUS ! The soldiers used to have to keep sticks to ward them off when they were in the field (no weapons ). I am excited for you to see Dr Bennett. I am so sure you are going to get results from him. We have Mtn Lions here as well as black bears, red and gray foxes, and ofcourse snakes. THought not as many rattlers as we have copperheads and cotton mouths. Part of country life. Take care you

    • Tonie, You can do anything. You are amazing. It will work out..just remember to let others do the heavy lifting for you. Glad the services were such a blessing to you and continue to think of and pray for your daughter. I know your heart aches all the time. How awful for Tammy. I can imagine she has to worry about the skin and other tissues repairing where that snake got her. Hard to imagine how frightening that would be. Thinking of you today and hoping your foot is better.
      They are spray washing the house today. Love, Sue

      • YEAH, that means they are almost finished !! I know you are so happy. Foot is feeling better by the day. I got the frame put together . Although my Daddy used oak on everything he could so you have to drill pilot holes and then use the screws (couldn’t use the nail gun ) so it took way too ling. Maybe tomorrow I can finish it and coax nephew to helping me this weekend. It is turning cool at night. Won’t be long til the coldness comes. NOT looking forward to that.
        I am SOOOO glad you are almost done with the house, but not as much as you I know. I saw where DD is getting a reward for 4 months of hard work ? 🙂 That is nice. You haven’t said if you are doing better yet. I pray you are. I hate when you get sick cause I know it is so hard for you to get rid of stuff.
        Well, time to get ready for work.
        Love you much

  18. Hi all
    Tonie yea you do do everything .clever gal you are!
    I am sorry to hear that your DD has her problems,..thinking of you
    How awful about the snake ,had them in Malaya and Oz ,but never came near one .must be so sore and frightened for it happening again

    Sue ..hope the house came up fine and no more problems
    DD is not bad ..first period lighter and pain fingers crossed
    My dad not so good..talking about funerals ..and his speech so slurry and voice sort of gargly

    Hope Annie comes good..I’m sure she will
    Much cooler here no need of fan at night now
    Gives it 6c tonight
    Hope all not too bad

    • Chris:
      I am “jack of all trades and master of none” ! A perfectionist I am not, so it is just to suit me how it gets done. Is your daytime cooling down as well ? We are hotter this week than we were last month !! But the night temps are going down. High 50’s. I had to take up some tiles where my little Ceasar dog kept marking on. And have decided after reinstalling them (and cleaning) that they will stay in my room with the DOOR SHUT at night so s they cannot wander and get into mischief. SO far it is working out well as they won’t mark anything unless it is early am before I let them out.
      So glad your DD is doing better. I pray your father will come on round and get off those thoughts. I can understand though how he must be feeling bless his heart.
      You have a good day

  19. Oh forgot to say DH came off new tabs today had to ring dr. he’s missed heart beats and with the pacemaker he has had to stop….what is next he can’t take any and bp still high

    • Chris, Glad to hear DD is working out some of her health problems. I know you were worried. I also can understand why you would be so worried about your DH. Poor man has been through so many types of hypertension medication. I also wonder what the next step would be. Is he able to take a walk each day? As far as diet, the current feeling about salt is that it doesn’t play as large a role in high B/P as we once did. This whole growing old is not for sissies is it??? May I ask you how old your Dad is? Does he have many friends who have passed? I also pray Annie pulls out of this current funk and gets some help. It’s such a daily struggle for each of us. Glad you’re cooler now. Thinking of you..Love, Sue

      • Sue. My dad is 90 next June
        His friends are still about.and perky.but my dad is in so poor in health and restricted with this Parkinson’s …but it came as a surprise when he rang to ask me to see how much a funeral costs. Etc.
        Dh has kept off salt tho since he was 25….to help the Menieres
        But my dad had a bad moment apparently last week while the painters were there he had to use the communal toilet and didnt get there quick enough as he can’t walk at all really.and had a disaster all can imagine that may have something to do with it. Terrible disease it destroys
        That’s it I think for tonite try and get some sleep…I hope

    • Lyn, P.S. My old cell phone died recently and I looked at new ones and the monthly rate for connections was shocking. Phones cheap. SoooooooI ordered a new battery for the old one from for $7. Sue

    • Chris, Life can hurt in so many ways besides our physical selves, huh? I think some of the family issues and heartbreaks from watching life march over us with time and deterioration can actually hurt more than our physical stuff. I’m sorry you have heartaches with and about your dear Dad. I remember that aching feeling when my Dad was so ill many years ago and it has to be endured but still hurts so much. I know he has fear and it sounds like he is trying to plan and may have given up hope. That’s another familiar feeling, huh? Maybe he is trying to keep you from having to make painful decisions after he is gone. I hope the doc comes up with some answers for DH. Thinking of you…Sue

  20. HELLO,

    • Oh Jennie, I hate to hear you so down, my funny, delightful friend. I pray it isn’t a rocket landing on your head type of health issue, or a heartbreak from a family matter or someone hurting you. It makes me feel bellicose and protective of you, the one who cares so deeply for all of us. I hope it is resolves or at least made less painful very quickly.
      I am hermetically sealed today, with plastic covering all the windows as they begin to paint the body of the house in the green I chose, called “LEEK.” That is as in the vegetable not the event…I hope. They power washed it yesterday so any of the other kind of leaks should have been uncovered. As far as our street…new curbs were poured yesterday so we are making meager progress with the road crew.
      Is your lovely garden still yielding for you? Winter is approaching for all of us and I have mixed feelings. Hope the sun shines on you today and your spirits lift. Much love and concern, Sue

      • HELLO SUE,

  21. Tonie, So you’re working today with Ms. Alice? Indeed winter is acomin’ in. Yes, it does feel so good to be down to the painting portion of our house project. The contractor was by yesterday afternoon and I had to point out a couple of other carpenter jobs they had overlooked. The whole project revealed so much we weren’t expecting with the fire, dry rot, etc. but we’ll get there. New toilet to be installed on Thursday; always interesting to get a new throne.
    Sounds like your porch cover is progressing and do hope your nephew helps. It would be nice to have cover for wet pooches and for you and your floor. Speaking of floors and pooches, George is doing so well peeing in or at least near his pee pads. One up and one down. He still can’t come up or down the indoor stairs but will come up the outdoor ones. So far last week and this one he has started “humping”, caught him eating a piece of his own poop and had to put flea stuff on both he and Jake. Guess my little boy is growing up and needs his equipment clipped; will keep both of them off the grass..usually don’t have fleas in the backyard with just bark and brick, etc. And the beat goes on. He’s all of four pounds now…
    Hope those namesake chickens are behaving better than usual. You’ve got to admit they’re more fun than KFC extra crispy. Love, Sue

    • Sue:
      LOL ! Those chickies are a mess ! Spoiled like the rest of my animals. I found a flea on Brutie the other day as well, so I sprayed both dogs. Only one I have seen all year. I need to be out and about working on my project again, but not ready yet. 🙂 I had a bad bout with vertigo yesterday and still feeling the effects a bit today. I can see little George on the steps. Don’t let him have a stuffed animal, he will hump it to death !!
      Can’t wait to see the finished product of your house. We have a cold front coming down from Canada tomorrow, supposed to be in the 40’s over night ! Oh boy !
      Hope you are feeling better.

  22. Hi all
    Quick note tired tonite
    My dad fell this morning and had a call frm hosp at 8am.he had broke his nose.theyncant do anything till swelling goes down so the ambulance bought him back home .he has ent appt to come .falls clinic and physio booked and extra appt to see Parkinson’s clinic. Nose all swollen he says he’s not sore..will be tomorrow!
    With him for 3hrs .at hosp and DH not so good see dr Friday night
    Then GS doesn’t want to continue college Had txt from DD at 8ish too about it all…so my head is all agog at moment .theyve had rows etc. ugh…
    Gonna bring up the blankets and have a hot choc and watch tv
    I’m still losing weight tho on diet only less than a pound a week but its added up to 7 lbs now.but don’t know if I will continue with all this around me. I try to keep on thinking this is for me…..but love a bl..dy good meal tho!! Fish and chips…curry well praps not eh! Tummy as it is …so ill keep on trekkin
    See you tomorrow Chris

    • Oh Chris, so much going on in your life. First of all, what a strain and stress for you to be at the hospital with your poor Dad. Parkinson’s patients fall so much and a broken nose does hurt, for sure. Don’t be surprised they tell you he threw up because of all the blood some folks swallow with a broken nose, especially if it isn’t set as yet. Poor man. He might end up with black eyes also from the blood floating over there beneath the eyes. I know you’re upset about GS but I also know you understand kids will be kids. Sounds like he’s determined to have his life lived his own way. What a hard spot for his Mom. I suspect there was a time in her life when she pulled something similar.
      It’s only my humble opinion but I think a pound loss per week is good weight loss. I think it would be more fun if you’d reward yourself to something you love to eat at least once a week. How does that sound? I don’t know about the curry though with IBS/ guess I identify with that too much and have imagines of smoke coming out of certain parts of my anatomy. Love you dear girl..let it go unless you can do something about it. Just gets yours and DH’s B/P up. Sue

    • Chris:
      My thoughts and prayers are with you. I know it must be hard taking care of your dad. He very likely will be feeling it more today.
      As far as your grandson, I hate it when it comes to the point where you can no longer influence their decisions. It may not be what you want for him, but he can always go back later after he gets a taste of a job he doesn’t like. I went back when I was 22. Just be patient.

  23. Jennie dear, now I understand what you’re feeling in your heart and know it aches. I am sorry and completely understand. Why not just tell Tim or Claire how much this disconnect is hurting you sweet lady? I understand we good mothers don’t like to demand or appear to, but sometimes others don’t know how we feel unless we tell them. I completely agree with you about texting and find it separates us all into short phrases and completely kills the human contact. I know, I know to many of you reading this it totally dates me and I don’t give a fig. Yes, I know how lonesome you have been in your new country and far from the kids. I also understand how irritating and painful it is to feel such loss while enduring pain. Bitchy is allowed you know!
    Actually I’ve done something to my back and have a doctor’s the morning. I found out a short while ago, when I took Jake out on a leash because the painters are busy, and I left George alone for a few mins. When I came back in he was upstairs..first time, all by himself! He is a complete rascal, great fun and very affectionate. So much going on around here for the last few weeks..nearing the end on the house and I’ll be so pleased and relieved when we can see the results. The preparation was long, especially for the contractors. Surprises on every turn with this old girl…the house that is. Please know that we are here for you and always listen with understanding. Is there something to be done for your thumbs? How is DH and dear Sasha..I must go but first I’ll share Geor’ge’s little trick. I pretend to chew on one of his many tiny rawhides and he sees me and comes running over to jump and take it out of my mouth. Weighed him yesterday and he is a full four pounds now…Please remember how much you are loved. Sue

    • Hi Sue,
      Thank you for the advice, and yes I will send Tim a rotten old text, you are right he does need to know how cut off I am feeling, we should be sharing all the things they are doing at the house like we used to, I am not some work colleague, I am his Mom, and we have been through some tough times together.
      Oh I love hearing about wee George, Sacha likes to take his dental chews to the far end of the room, then when called he comes belting up and Barry sticks his leg out so he can take a running jump, that can go on for some time, it get more like the Grand National every day. I am delighted that there is so much progress being made at your house, I bet it looks fab when its all done, don’t forget to post some photos will you?
      Ok, catch you later, love you my friend. Jennie xx

  24. Jennie:
    I agree with SUe, you should tell Tim how you feel. Let him do something for you. I am so sorry you are having such a time of it. Being away from the people you love is hard. Just think how good this year has been with all the visits you have had from your Mum, and Tim and friends. You have even had a day away at the beach ! You are very blessed, and I know it is hard to think that way when so much is going on. But to keep you from being so depressed, sometimes it helps to think of the good things instead of the bad. Love you much and hope you are doing better today

    • Hi Tonie,
      Yes we have to be so grateful for the good things in life, I must not feel sorry for myself, just miss “The Boy” having said that he did call me from his cell the other night, and now Claire is talking about an eventual landline, so I will try to be patient, and not moan about it. Its very cold here now Tonie, I hope this is not the end of some decent weather, all the damp makes the joints hurt doesn’t it ? How are your feet now, I haven’t had chance to read up on everyone, I know you were trying to get it sorted, also how is your Grandson?
      I didn’t know you suffered from vertigo, poor you that must be difficult to deal with. Take care of yourself my friend…love you….Jennie x

      • Hey Jen:
        Doing better today. I slept most of the day yesterday. My foot is doing much better since the shot and exercises. Glad to hear they are talking of a landline. It is supposed to run very cold here for the next couple of nights, days in the 70’s (upper) No I am not looking forward to all that cold either. Gotta go shut the door the AC just kicked on ! 🙂
        Be good

  25. Hya
    Thanks Sue and Tonie
    Well he is sorer today and black eyes too.but he went shopping in town on His scooter!.he won’t be beaten!
    GS been told he can have a year off and go back to college if he wants too…he wants to earn money
    Nope I wouldn’t have a curry.only the mild one I make…just would be nice. Actually I can’t even go out to order a curry the smell in the places sting my’s funny as I have no tears at all can’t even cry ,nowt

    The blog doesn’t let me know if I get a used to and I’ve applied again but it won’t do it

    George sounds as if he’s going to be a real character .how did you get on with the dr with your back sue?

    HAve you had this vertigo before Tonie? Hope it didnt get too cold ,but I guess it’s all gonna come soon for us all

    Jennie thinking of you tomorrow
    Raining most of the day here and dark, cold tonite .gives it better tomorrow .perhaps we can go somewhere . Fingers crossed if DH ok

    • Hi Chris,
      I hope things are better with Dad, and the bruising is coming out, he is a bugger on that scooter, got to admire his spirit though, he is a tough old boy, I wish you weren’t left to cope with it all though.
      Its really cold here too Chris, jacket and socks weather now, came all of a sudden didn’t it? I will let you know how things go at the clinic later, if we are back early enough, thanks for the concern….talk later, love Jen x

      • Hey Chris/Jennie:
        Chris glad to hear about your Dad. He is like us, gets down when he realizes how he can’t do things and then he is over it and back fighting again ! That is how my sister’s friend is, the one with MS. She can’t walk much at all, but boy she SCOOTS on that scooter !! 🙂 It is getting cold tonight, I was wrong, last night I ran the air all night ! It is bright and cool today. I switched days with Ms Alice, going up tomorrow as I felt so bad yesterday. I still have a headache but not feeling as bad as I was. I found a stash of prednisone I forgot about (5 or 6 pills) and took one last night, will take them up and see if they get rid of this flare up (on top of the vertigo) that I am having.

  26. Tonie
    How you going then on the the flare up the joints? DH gets vertigo all the time it’s a rotten thing.
    Change in weather maybe the cause of any flare up do you think?
    Yea my dad was in town again today and his eyes are all blue!
    How’d you go at drs with your back ..and any other bits!!?
    Jennie. Hope all ok

    • Chris dear, Well, I must apologize for my absence. I have had so much going on here at the house and doing it all with the fierce pain in my back. I have a fractured vertebra at the L1 level, the first lumbar disc. I knew it was something unusual because of the change in my usual symptoms. Bending over was agonizing and I am having more bowel problems than usual. I didn’t do anything to cause it except be me with all my health problems and it just happened…a compression fracture is what it’s called.
      The painters spent weeks prepping the house and did the body of the house Tuesday and the dogs and I were hermetically sealed in as they covered all windows and doors. The color is different than I small swatch versus a whole house. I will get used to it. The painter offered to do it over again but I wouldn’t hear of it. I want it over. Wed. morning I went to brush my teeth and there was no water. Half the house, the front half was very wet and there was a geizer shooting into the air out front. It appeared the road construction crew had broken a water line. With the age of our pipes around here it was hardly surprising. We were dry half a day. Thankfully, the paint was dry when it got soaked. The carpenter, a very nice and talented man, fell on another project that same day and broke his leg. They got another guy out here to do the few projects left but he’s not as good as the original guy. Then…I called the plumber to delay installation of the new toilet because I needed to be able to lie down upstairs where the BR is located that needed the new toilet and he said the new toilet bowl arrived broken. Surely this trend will soon end but we are plugging away. What else does one do?
      So what did your DH find out about his B/P? Hope your Dad had his nose put back in place and is doing well now and you of course, are in my thoughts. Now, because you aren’t on FB, you got all my news and I will now go onto FB and tell it again. Don’t know what happened to today’s blog. I did write one so we will wait and seel. Love you, Sue

      • Sue
        No one could write a script to match this,they would say it couldn’t happen!
        Hope you are not too disappointed with the colour of the house and it grows on you
        I do hope it all settles down .you are so dependent on others doing things
        How is Jim now
        DH got diuretics today to start tomorrow.
        Dads nose is all twisted and cut but bruising going
        The ent dept will see it when swelling gone down
        Hope you soon feel nice and safe in your house Chris

      • Hey Chris:
        I am doing better, the pills are helping me, thank GOd I found them when I was cleaning up my bedroom This vertigo attack was the worse I have ever had. Well, I finally heard from the Disability board yesterday. I was denied again. So now we have to get a hearing set up and let a judge decide. Seems to be the going thing if you need it. Sigh….oh wel it is in GOd’s hands and I know He will see me thru. Just gotta get ready for winter. So ya’all continue to pray me thru. That is what I need right now.

  27. Well Sue any news on your back? I’m so sad to hear that you are all having troubles and all different kinds these days. I am too. Must have something to do with the weather. Vertigo is awful my prayers are with you all. Let’s pray we all have one day of rest,, less pain and just be happy with who we are and where we are in this journey. love XXX

    • Happy 59, love your new handle. Wish the pic of your pup was larger. My dear, you are so patient. It sounds like you have an insurance problem or need a new doc. Tell me if it’s none of my business. I just want the best for you and SOON. It’s such a combo living with this business, when you consider attitude and the best medical care we can find. It took me 14 years to find an accurate diagnosis and some of the best doctor’s in the west. In the meantime the old clock of life keeps ticking and we’re getting older. So good to have you with us. Thanks for asking about my back which I learned today has a lateral fracture at L1. Pain for awhile it looks like. I hate this so must look harder for things to be happy about. My daughter was off work today and came over and she showed me all she’s doing on It is very interesting. She wants me to swab my cheek and send it in with ninety nine dollars. I told her I’ll swab if she pays the ninety nine bucks. She’s more curious than I am. Wonderful young woman. It’s such fun to watch our kids dealing with their kids. Take care and try to get to someone who can give you some answers, please. Fondly, Sue

  28. Hey all:’I am having the most horrible cramps in my left arm on the inside near my elbow, anytime I raise my arm and spasm. Any idea what causes that ??

    • Tonie
      I’m so sorry it got declined again, what a bummer.another lawyer maybe? Perhaps they always take it this far .but I can’t understand it at all. Why can’t they see they know how you really are. I hope they see that at the hearing
      What do the drs say about the vertigo ,do they know why it is there ?
      At least one bit of news that your feeling better from the pain. Sue will come in with info on the cramp i know
      Not a good news day eh? But with all praying on this blog you’ll get there

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