I don’t know that I’ve ever literally walked a fence, but it is a descriptive phrase which I like to use. It so beautifully describes the balancing act; the teeter-totter effect of parsing out energy, in a life lived with chronic pain. It denotes danger from a journey we have to make under difficult circumstances. That’s how I feel, so many days, when choices of activities have to be made; armed only with the skeletal form of who we used to be and the vital parts we have left. We find ourselves choosing, very carefully what we can, want and are able to do. There is no more running around like crazy fulfilling everyone’s expectations. There is no more being all things to all men, women and children who have their expectations of us. We know those of us with chronic painful problems that we can no longer “have it all.” I’m not certain anyone truly does have it all. I suspect it’s an urban myth we often experience when observing the lives of others. They may look like they have everything but the chances are pretty fair that they don’t.


I guess it is all part of the image we experience via television, movies and folklore about what life should be. What happens when life isn’t what it is supposed to be, whatever the heck that is? We start out on a journey and think we know where we’re going when, in fact, life has other plans for us. When I became a nurse 35 years ago, I didn’t really plan on being my own best patient. It just sort of happened as the tiny time bombs on my strands of DNA exploded and the alarms went off in my pre-programmed existence.


This is not a simple thing to figure out; what you can do, how much of it you can do and when to stop doing whatever it is you are doing. Most of us just go until we “hit the wall.” Like a disoriented person in a dark room, or a child playing “blind man’s bluff” we often roam around until we crash. We become human bumper cars. It hurts. It’s ugly but it’s all we have. If we didn’t venture out there and make some choices to get on with our lives as we intersect with our families and friends we would lead these enormously boring lives. There are no flashing caution signs except for pain. There are no alarms that go off and no clanging bells at the local police station. We just have to try.


The typical scenario for us is to be confronted with an activity we want to participate in, such as dinner with our family, a day of play with our children or grandchildren or a visit from friends from in or out of town. We want to do these things. They’re fun. They give us joy and they’re part of life. We crave and need this connection with others. At other times we need to be productive. We have enough sense and experience to know we have a limited amount of energy; we have pain or will have pain. It only takes a year or two for us to get over the “have to dos.” You know the things that are expected of you and you do them because you’re too chicken to say “no?” Those don’t even count after awhile and you save your energy and that little portion of the day you feel up to doing anything to the items high on your list. You do them, you enjoy doing them and you finish. Then the pain and often, enormous fatigue sets in. For me it’s usually that night or the next morning. Stiffness, pain and deep “who cut my strings” fatigue inhabit your body to the point it is difficult to sleep, walk into the bathroom or even make the effort of feeding yourself. For me it is often a discomfort so intense it effects safe function and also makes me nauseous in its intensity.


You lie in bed, unable to sleep until you reach for a pain pill or a muscle relaxant and you quiz yourself about your choices. “Was it worth it? Should I have done it?” Usually, the answers come quickly. “Yes, it was worth it but you knew it would cost you.” Every activity comes with a price tag. Then you pay the price. Writing a check would be so easy. Scrubbing a charge card would be so simple. The price we pay costs us in the coinage of pain and suffering. The bill usually arrives the day after the activity. We don’t get or give all that much sympathy or empathy. We don’t expect it. We do get some understanding if we’re lucky.


What we really don’t like is the individual who lectures us with the “I told you so.” What do these types of individuals expect us to do? Should we lie on the bed all day? Should we find a cocoon and climb in? Here’s a heads up. If you’re one of those individuals, please understand that we have to live life. If we don’t then we are already dead. We want to be all that we can be, just like those U.S. Army recruiting posters. Just because there are no rules and we don’t always know the parameters and occasionally hit a wall; well, that’s just how we have to do it. Wise up. Please, for the sake of all of us who have to live this way; look outside the box. Try to understand how difficult it is and give us some kudos for trudging on by putting one sore foot in front of the other, day after painful day. Each of us is just trying to find our way to as good a life as possible.


Please let me share a poem I wrote many years ago and shared with you but seems so appropriate today, I would like to share again.




I know you are hurting,

I understand, I do.

You see, we walk together,

Because I’ hurting, too.


I don’t have all the answers

Most days I have so few.

I do have blinding fear,

But is the sky still blue?


Some days I want to escape;

Could I be someone else, don a disguise?

Let me out. I don’t like it in here.

At the dawn will the sun still rise?


By the way how did we get in this fix?

Was it genes, bad luck, were we stressed?

I don’t know either, but tell me

Does the sun still set in the west?


We can’t always help it you know,

Feeling the way we do.

The good emotions and bad,

Aren’t they all a part of you?


The greatest gift, I think,

Is self-honesty and truth;

Otherwise we’ll harvest

Self-delusion and bitter fruit.


To know why is the question we ask.

Eventually this has to stop

For we find more strength for the fight,

When we finally say, why not?


Was I promised some sort of exemption?

Does my life mean more than another?

Don’t flower strewn paths quickly fade?

We’re each a mother, sister or brother.


We’re connected in so many ways

Walking this path called life;

Why do we think we’re alone?

When we could be united by strife?


Is it possible our pain

Could form a bond of the heart?

Then neither of us will be alone

Isolated, abandoned, apart?


Sue Falkner Wood



  1. Hey all:
    Quick hello before going to work. Chris, glad your Dad is perking up !! Sue, what tiles for where ? I missed something (probably a lot) what are you sprucing up now ? I have to tile the top of the counter I put in the kitchen. Just have flake board on it right now.
    Kids are doing good. I am adjusting but had forgotten the perils of having young’uns around ! 🙂 . THey will be helping Aunt Judy today,so she will keep them happy . Ms Alice is have little strokes. She had one on Carol Mon, but afterwards was just fine, no memory loss or anything. Except for the woman she sees standing in the corner or sitting at the table , says she has big hair. I told her next time she sees her to tell me and I will run her off !!
    Love to all, have a great day.

    • Hi Tonie, yes you missed that we are having the cracked cement stairs out in front tiled on the fronts and sides. Wed won’t have tile where one walks, but they will fill in some of the old cracks with stucco. We’re looking forward to it looking better than it does currently. Had them tiled about 15 years ago and they’re all falling off and look awful.
      I’m so sorry to hear about Ms. ALice. Poor dear lady. She is so fortunate to have you there for her. This whole getting old bit is certainly harder than we’re ever told when we’re younger.. It’s kind of like childbirth…no one wants to scare you.
      Sounds like you are thoroughly enjoying the grands and I’m so glad but yes, a big adjustment for you. Probably good that you can escape to take care of Ms. Alice some. Judy will probably work them today…good for them. Thinking of all of you and hope you’re getting settled. Much love, Sue

  2. Hi all
    Been at my dads today for two hrs assessing.he passed all the tick boxes so it now goes to a multi disciplinary team to assess if he can get free care. Questions so complicated
    Any how he is in hosp till at least nxt wed.
    So if all ok we will go to coast tomorrow and DD and GS visit over w.end and Us Monday
    Weather looks set good
    dH bp is up high again
    Goona makes summat to eat
    Tonie looking forward to the pics
    Sue hope you feeling better
    Love to all

  3. Guess what we came to shed!!
    So we got the whole day here tomorrow,fri sat and sun……
    dD see my dad Sunday and GS it’s just thurs and fri without
    Just got sorted so rest now Chris

    • Chris, glad things worked out for you to go to shed (beach house). I hope you get to relax and try not to worry. I know it is hard but he is in good hands so you don’t have to worry about him being alone and falling. Did you find out anything about the nebulizer yet? I was just wondering if you had called your doctor or the chemist. It might be something good for you and help you.That is your decision. It is not my place to tell you what to do. Sorry for pushing it so hard. Just wanted you to get some relief, that’s all sweetie. Love you. Will continue praying for DH blood pressure problems. My step daughter is the same way. Can not get it regulated. Have a good time. I can hardly wait until I go to my daughter’s and see the ocean. One week from tomorrow. She said they found a place where you can rent special wheelchairs for going out on the beach. I am so excited. Talk to you soon, LOVE, Donna

      • Hya donna
        I had no time to find out about the nebuliser,my dads interview took two hrs and with getting there and parking, time went.and I was thinking so much about how it would go.but what I’m gonna do is when back ring the sister at our practice and ask can I do it with her there on an appointment. You tell me want you want Donna I’m all ears to hear every one I like to be advised and I take it all on board.the advice on here is always A1 and you are not pushing it at all …ok?😄😄 I like to get all advice I can get. I will also ring the chemist when back home….but I think it is how sue,s Jim said, a you have to try it.oh dear…I’m always unlucky it puts me off it
        Thank you for your prayers too
        Not long to go now then till your visit it will be so good and such a refreshing change
        Well we went out to where we go to see sunset over sea..drove back…..ducks crossing the road ! Rabbit hopping in the middle and then a peacock splaying it’s feathers also in the middle of the road… know your in Norfolk !
        Sitting out on the veranda and it’s 11pm .supposed to see the nothern lights on the sky tonite,but I don’t think we will….to far south.
        But it’s nice out here
        Ok. ….oh That’s interesting beach wheel chairs. I do hope ,well I know you will have a lovely time Donna .just take the rests…..

    • Chris, I’m so glad. Hope DH’s B/P goes down as you rest up over there. Dad will get sorted out…enjoy your time at the coast. Try to put your worries aside if you can. Love, Sue






    • Jennie, I’m sorry you’re still bent over. What is an A/S? Yes dear girl, you do need to get to a bone man right away. Yes, Jim is recovered, I have PT today if the gut cooperates that is. No, we are warm for us but not that bad. Portland is supposed to get into the triple digits this weekend but we’re supposed to stay breezy and just warm. It helps to be on the coast and river. Had the grands all day yesterday. It was tiring but so much fun. We made brownies with mint frosting and watched the new AMerican Girl movie…well, at least GD and I did. It’s beneath GS’s dignity apparently. I also need to get to the store but just don’t feel up to it so we will see. Jennie, please get some help and Xrays. Much love, Sue


  5. Jennie, do take care of yourself!
    Tonie, I hope you had a little respite from the grands and will be ready for them when you have them again. Sorry about Ms Alice. 😦 But good news in there, too.
    Prepping over here. All going well so far. I haven’t really missed solid food yet, but will likely welcome some after the scoping is done. Trying to keep the fluids coming so I won’t be dehydrated. See you on the other side. 😉

  6. lyn
    All the best it will soon be all done and you can have something nice to eat.
    Do they put you right out or just relax you

    Well I’m at the shed weather warm. It looks good for a few days…..but I think my tum is playing up from those sesame seeds i had .havent had much trouble since I been on my strict diet but it seems back .
    DH bp is still too high,,but he has Drs appt Monday
    The therapists want to deliver a commode for my dad and wanted me there today to wait in all day for it
    Well first of all I can’t go in his flat with those smells …then the hosp want him out and he can’t go without the commode
    So I want him to stay in as long as poss..and even have his stitches out there….so they really did get annoyed with me…so I said I won’t be in the area till Tuesday for this assess appt and I will ring you.they rang me three times yesterday…well my dad can’t move himself at all they have him so drugged up he couldn’t move to get to a takes him a long time to even get from a chair to bed with help So am concerned about it.and I think he is best where he is whilst he has all these stitches in…well if he fell trying to get on it. So I will ring them and tell them the time I’m going to be there and they can deliver it then,I’m not going to wait from 9-6 for it. I’m sure as well I’m going to be up against it for the free care and fight the case. He has to be needing nursing care for it ..but it ain’t that simple you have to be in an iron lung I think.there was on the last assessment, a few days ago ,pages to fill in and tick boxes galore…the NHS have a book to guide you and it is 140 pages.. Which I boned up on….this next one is more difficult
    The nurses look after him good there tho and I am happy with that for now.just fed up with the admin side.
    But he should go into a nursing home..but he won’t .the future looks difficult…I was hoping to get results of his biopsy before the next assessment
    It really hasn’t been too good being away this time ,just too much to think
    Anyway it is as it is…
    I think I will starve myself fir a few days to see if it helps this tum now, it can work sometimes
    Well I hope this back just eases now before you see Dr .youve had a stressful time so maybe if it’s a spasm it’ll take a bit longer. Hope the shopping gives ok for you
    How’s your Tum now?
    Well it’s 5am ish gonna try and get back to sleep
    Love chris

    • Chris, I can partially understand your situation without being in it. Small wonder you can hardly sleep with so much on your mind right now. You’re right, of course, your Dad can’t go home unless he is well enough to get from bed to commode and then there are other things to worry about. He needs nursing care for cleanliness and to keep him comfortable, for instance his backside will very susceptible to bedsores, called decubitus. I see how worried you are and you are doing the right thing to stand your ground and stand up for not just your Dad but yourself as well. Couldn’t they drop off the commode with the neighbor or even at your house. They aren’t that big.
      Hope going on bland diet with smooth boring foods gives you a relief…I don’t recommend starving and don’t think you really meant that, right? My tum is always a problem but watching the diet helps as far as what goes in and I also do better when I can keep my going on a regular basis. Chronic constipation and diverticulitis are both a problem for so many of us.
      That is quite a map of life you are navigating dear friend and you’re doing an amazing job. Be good to you and know we’re here anytime you need to chat or get some semi good advice. Much love, Sue

  7. Sue
    Well they have to deliver the commode to the address it is meant for..officious or what?!
    The neighbour…well I’m not sure she can be a little difficult and she is Foreign and can’t speak English that good to understand I don’t like to ask really. She can moan to the other residents too and I don’t want that
    I will get it there but not till I want my dad out of Hosp .he has a red spot on bottom of back already . But they call that social nursing and you don’t get that free…it’s a minefield in you own home

    When I have diver the Dr has always told me liquids for 3 days…..sometimes it helps others no good at all
    Must say I don’t relish the idea for me at moment
    Good for starting my diet again tho!
    Hope the heat not too bad and hot for you this w.end
    Love Chris

    • Chris, I have found that thick liquids work best for me when it’s truly diver and not IBS such as potato soup, cream soups, shakes etc. Even yogurt but we have to pick and choose those without seeds like peach and cherry. I’ve been drinking a lot of Ensure this year..even berry because it doesn’t have seeds, just flavor but no chocolate…too much caffeine for me it stimulates the gut too much.

      Sorry to hear your Dad is already dealing with a bit of skin breakdown. If they can prop him on his sides it would help plus massaging around it brings healing bloodflow to the spot. NHS is exactly why so many of us are against Obamacare in this country. We can already see the breakdown in quality care. Hope you get some sleep.
      Jim is hooking up our window upstairs air conditioner right now at 10 PM and exhaust fan in window in other upstairs room. Planning ahead. Grands again tomorrow. Love, Sue

  8. Chris, praying sweetie. I hope you get things worked out with your dad. I can’t believe they would send him home in his condition. He can’t be there alone. I wish he would reconsider going to a nursing home. I am sure all this stress is not helping your tummy issues. I would take Sue’s advice for eating. I am proud of you for all you are doing to keep your dad in the hospital. I have to go to the pain doctor this morning. Another injection hopefully. Had spasms yesterday with leg pain. I will check back later. Have to get ready to go. Hang in there. LOVE YOU, Donna

  9. My goodness, Chris. You keep doing what you are doing for your dad. No one else will. Take care of yourself, too! I will be out for the procedures – endoscopy and colonoscopy. Worst part is over. Actually, the worst part was not the going, but the drinking. The suprep has a strong lemon-lime taste. Now, I like lemon-lime, but when it’s that strong it upsets my stomach. I was nauseous for a time with each dose. Fine now. We’ll be leaving in a half hour or so. So far not hungry, but that might change after I’m done. 😉

    • Mission accomplished! No sign of reflux, but he wants me to continue meds anyway. He was able to do 3 passes of my colon and on the last pass saw a tiny polyp which he removed and sent for biopsy, although he thinks it’s nothing.

      • Lyn, Glad it’s over. Chris is right of course. Anything that comes out of or off of a body has to go to pathology. Rest up, okay? Love, Sue

      • SO glad it is over for you Lyn. You are right the prep is the worst. Awful stuff, made me gag as well. Glad your reflux is gone.

  10. Well done lyn
    I have had several out and they can tell when they see them.they always send them away as you must all good.i know you will feel tired now .so,sleep well tonite .

    • Indeed, I do, Chris. My DH was a bit concerned because he had the same anesthesia and bounced right back. I reminded him that the RA makes my body react differently and it’s not unusual for me to be thrown into some fatigue. I’m sure I’ll sleep well.

  11. So good it’s over for you Lynn you can relax now tonite . Feeling fatigued takes an age to dissapear as does anaesthetic out of the body
    How’s the IBS. And have you got those tiles sorted yet.? Be nice for the summer
    my diver is sore ,first day of clear fluids today so I’m a little hungry! But good start to my diet,…?
    I’ll be back on scrambled eggs and pasta and cheese..looking forward to it.
    I also think it mite be to do with that home made icecream I have when I’m at the coast. Or maybe the sesame seeds
    They bought my dad to the phone in a wheelchair today when I rang..he seemed to be talking a bit better
    I asked them would they take him the long way back so he could have a change of view…
    Been dull and rainy today but looks good for tomorrow and next week a heat wave..but I don’t think we can come to shed because of my dad …he mite be at home and I don’t know how it will all go
    Also DH has a bp appt
    Jen. looks like we are going to get your weather then next week.HOPE THE BACK IS IMPROVING
    Tonie Hope all us sorted for any hot weather coming your way.

    My dad will have four visits a day but it’s not enough as you say..and he cant even get out of a chair never mind on and off a commode ,so I am worried.i will say all this at the second review on Tuesday .but it’s difficult as my dad wants to go home and I don’t like to go against it
    I hope you got some help at the dr today and the injection to help you. You want to be as good as can be to go away and enjoy the time with your DD. the buggy or beachchair sound good
    Well gonna have a cup,of yea no milk. ,oh dear.
    Love chris

    • Chris:
      Can he afford to find someone to “sit” with him, like I do Ms Alice ? I do pray you get it all sorted out . Prayers dear, keep on doing what you are doing yet, take care of yourself. Maybe all this uproar you are going thru is the culprit of this flare up ??

    • Hi Chris, glad you got to talk to your dad today. You would think with the nasty falls he has had, he would want to go to a nursing home so someone would be with him all the time. Men are very hardheaded when it comes to those kind of things. Did you come home to be there for the commode delivery? I wouldn’t have. I would have told them I am out of town and won’t be back until Monday, ha ha! I would have said I have arranged for a family member to come and see him on Saturday and one to come on Sunday. Then they would have probably said, can’t one of them go and wait for the commode. Ha Ha! It’s going to all work out I am sure. How is your tummy doing? I saw where you are watching what you eat. Best thing to do. I hope you feel better soon. I went for my Dr. appointment today and he injected it in 2 different places. The needle stick was not bad, but the medicine going in was so painful I almost cried. He kept apologizing because he has had these injections and knows how bad they hurt. Then he sent me for x-rays. They put me on that hard table and everything hurt. Then they wanted to put me on my left side. I tried I really did but couldn’t take the hip pain. Especially on those hard metal tables. I finally had to stand up for it. He, the doctor, called me before an hour was up from getting x-rays. He said my degenerative disc disease was a little worse. He also said that it looked like the L2 disc was kind of pinched together on one side. He couldn’t really tell if it was new when he compared it to my last x-rays. It is in the same area where I am having a lot of the pain. We are going to wait the next 4 weeks and see how the double injection helps. If not much relief then an MRI which I hate with a passion. The two spots are quite sore from the needles. I think I could tolerate the back pain but the upper leg pain where the leg and hip join is horrible until it starts to settle down once I get off of it. It is starting to feel better. Once I go upstairs and get in my bed it will feel better.. So that has been my day.
      Hope everyone has a nice weekend. I love you all very much. Everybody rest and take it easy. We are going to be in the 80’s starting Sunday. Whoo Hoo! Donna

      • Chris, I forgot to mention something based on one of your remarks. You said you did not want to go against his wishes ( your dad ). But at his age and with his health, you might have to decide what is more important, keeping him as healthy as you can and safe or letting him have his way and hurting himself and then you feeling guilty about it. I know all this is hard but you have a better chance of making the best decision for him than He does. I have been through this with my mom and my mother in law and my father in law. All 3 had to go to nursing homes at different times. Your dad needs round the clock care. This is one of those times you might have to be the bad guy. Trust me, they get over it once they get settled in. He shouldn’t be allowed to make these decisions ‘s. The doctors feel he is a 92 year old sick Man and send him home so we don’t have to deal with him.If it was their parent I bet they wouldn’t let them go home in the shape your dad is to live alone. I would ask the doctor if it was your father or mother, what would you do. Good luck with your decisions honey. The only reason I have been so hard with my words is because you gave me permission to give you advice and what my opinion was. I will be praying for you and this entire situation. I wish you had a family member to help you. Have you asked your DD and GS what they think? They might could help you if you talk it over. I love you! Donna

  12. Donna
    You are right before i go in to the assessment ,I will ,as my dad got too tired after the first one and he doesn’t need to be there for the second one .i shall ask him how does he feel he will be at home and not safe and sitting in a mess if he can’t get to the commode and all that stuff.then maybe I will say if the outcome is free care that they will only pay for a nursing home…maybe that will be the way ..or maybe it will just work out ok and he will think it best to go in one as well
    Well do you know they found out my dad had a key and rang me to say two of them were going to deliver the commode themselves.well that was good..but I also think they can’t send him home until the care is in place and that takes a few days and it’s the w.end and so I think it will be next week. With the assessment coming Im Not sure they will send him home.they just wanted to not be in my control I think ! But I shall be armed with all these words at the interview! I would at least like his stitches out
    Both GS and DD think he should go into a home,have done for a long time
    Yep you keep telling me what you think
    I’m so sorry you had such a day yesterday and to had to go thru all that ,I do hope once you got to bed and rested all settled for you…what a rotten day to have had. I don’t like MRI scans must be a very special person to be able to go thru all this…
    Well my left side with the diver is ,is still sore..trying to not take meds for it as it starts other probs off..see how it goes

    Jen hope the back is easing
    Lyn hope you had a good nite
    Annie how are things

    Heat wave here next week too😀
    Love Chris

    • Chris, you will find your way with your Dad. We went through something similar with my Mom and Dad when she tried to take care of him but just couldn’t . He knew we were going to have no choice and he told me, just put me back in the hospital. We did and he died within a week. He gave up. I’m only sharing this with you not to scare you but to make the point that some of these extremely independent elderly men will fight it to the very end.
      I know one way you might bring him around is to, as you mentioned, bring up the safety issue because he surely knows his limits but it is at odds with his deep desire to be independent. Such a difficult time for each of you but especially for you and him as you are the main players here.
      Sorry you’ll be facing extra stress from the heat and hope your gut issues clear up soon for you with your clear liquid diet. That whole IBS, diverticulitis issue is so inconvenient and painful, I know. My thoughts are with you, Sue


    • Jennie, oh dear girl. I am so sorry and you shouldn’t have to suffer on your own. There must be someone who can help to diagnose you and then provide relief for you. How soon can you get in to see someone? You have my phone number, my prayers and my love. Do get some help soon. Sue

    • Prayers sweet Jennie. So sorry you are in such terrible pain. Hope they find a solution for you. The pictures of your garden were lovely by the way.

  14. Dear peeps:
    Seems so long since I had time and energy to talk with you !! Jennie, prayers for you sweetie. I cannot imagine having to wait on help like that. However, it may very well happen soon with all the stuff going on over here. Once it starts. I jsut read how the mayor of Memphis Tenn wants to dig up the bodies of Nathan Bedford and his wife and move them ( he was a Civil War General who started the KKK). People are really getting stupid here !
    Okay rant over. I have to work inside today and put things away and hang pictures, etc. I hate doing that, but must be done. Yet here I am almost 10 and not started yet. Couldn’t sleep last night, and woke very late this am. Nathan is up,but the girls are asleep still. I think i will make some sausage and eggs and see if that gets them going. !
    Sue you must post a pic when the tiles are put in place. I have a counter I am going to tile maybe on Mon. Getting it cleaned off clutter today. It is overcast and supposed to rain today, which is fine with me. We have been so hot for this time of year., hight 80’s and even 90’s. WIth the humidity that is not good.
    Okay, got a hen setting. Means she is on some eggs and going to hatch some chicks. I didn’t know it , had to look it up. It takes 3 weeks of sitting on that nest for the eggs to hatch. Unreal. No wonder they are protective. Can’t wait to see them or it, not sure how many eggs she is on. One of them is plastic I know that 🙂
    I rode Baby the other night, and my hip was so much better. My back however, is not. Hoping the next injection will help more.
    Know you are all in my thoughts and prayers daily.

    • Tonie, so good to get caught up on your news. I’m pleased you got to ride Baby and it doesn’t sound like it hurt that much. I know the kids are having a wonderful time but also know you’re worn out. Exciting news about the chicks…wait and see, huh? How fun.
      Yes, I’m looking forward to getting the front of the stairs repaired and looking better. I agree things are so irrational in this country right now. Everyone is trying to revise history. History is history and should be left in peace, whether we agree with it or not is immaterial. It is still our history.
      I had the grands two days this week and enjoyed them very much but have had a week of gut trouble. It is always something and I am worn down from it. Still going to PT twice a week and it has really helped my range of motion in the arm where I had the cancer but my SI’s and back still a problem, guess always will be. I hope to take today off and just be a lazy girl. Hope you can take a few hours to do the same. Love you, Sue

  15. Went to see Mom last weekend. She’s in good spirits even if her body is continuing to deteriorate. I recorded a CD for her of me singing (two songs I had originally picked out for her funeral but decided I wanted to honor her with while she is still alive.) I also wrote her a letter recounting things I remember and love about her. It was a sweet visit and brought her much joy. We still don’t have any clear idea of how much longer she will live but she seems stable for now at least.
    I am beyond stressed these days, and still in a lot of pain. Wondering if I may have gone back to full-time hours too soon after surgery. I’m doing my PT after work two nights a week and I’m very fatigued. Fibromyalgia flared up quite a bit. Work is crazy right now- not particularly super busy, and not terribly strenuous physically, but really draining. We have four autistic kids in pre-K that are constantly crying, screaming, hitting, throwing fits, etc. Nap time is sheer hell as they keep waking all the other kids (all groups sleep in the same room). Two in the toddler group are constant cryers as well. My nerves are pretty shredded just with the sheer noise level. Doesn’t help that I had bronchitis/pneumonia the first week of June and did a burst of steroids which always mess with my head and make me psycho.
    My rescue kitty is turning out to be quite a challenge (or shall I say hellion?!) She is very aggressive toward me and biting a lot. Have tried everything I can think of including medication with little improvement. I’m afraid I may have to surrender her back to the rescue group. It’s breaking my heart. 💔
    And speaking of broken hearts, I lost Whitney, a very dear nurse friend this week. She was only 39. She had juvenile diabetes and idiopathic pancreatitis as well as RA. She had been doing really well the last several months and just died suddenly on Sunday. Our mutual friend Brenda is devastated by this. They were best friends. The three of us went to dinner every Fri for the five years we worked together 2003-2008 and we stayed in touch after I transferred to the job in Irving but haven’t seen her as much the last couple years. Brenda was not even able to come to the funeral. I’m very concerned about her. She’s staying with her folks for a couple weeks at least. She can’t even talk about it.
    Went to some friends’ lake house today. It was very pleasant for Texas summer- about 87-88 degrees. The rain has made everything green and the water levels are up so we went out on the Seadoo (he drove extra slow for me so it didn’t bounce or jostle my back too much). It was nice to get a little sun, ride with wind and spray in my face, grill some burgers and laugh a lot. Good medicine for the soul. Sunset over the lake was gorgeous.
    Well, must get some sleep so I’ll sign off for now. Love to all, Princess Crabby Pants 👑

    • Dear Annie, so much going on with you small wonder you are in a state. What a stressful job. Do you ever think of going into another nursing job? With your experience I know you certainly could and it would probably feel like a vacation. You must do what is best for you. Pleased you had such a good visit with your Mom. It sounds like a very special time for both of you. So much stress for you, so much.
      How awful for you to lose such a close friend. I am so sorry and pray that time will soothe your pain and her other dear friends pain. It can hurt so much, as you know. It sounds like you had a good day yesterday and it was just what you needed to do. Now the kitty…I have always found cats rarely change. THey are what they are…of course they respond to love but still, personality wise. I hope your relationship with your new pet turns around but if it doesn’t don’t give up. There has to be another one out there for you that will work out better for you.
      My goodness but you do have a lot on and I pray for you to find peace in the midst of all of it. Love you, Sue

      • Sue, I’m looking into different job possibilities. Want to stay through the fall so I get a better review as my last one was quite poor and very skewed by my old boss’s grudge against me. But yes a QUIET job would seem like a vacation for sure.

  16. Annie
    What a busy and emotional on all levels time for well as the pneumonia no wonder you are suffering with the fibro…
    The stress from the noise at work etc,my goodness you must have such good coping skills
    Your mum sounds as if she is in a good place and at peace with herself and you must feel at peace yourself with beautiful to sing those songs to her. Also your words must have given her great comfort….you must be a great joy to her …….and a dose of nature always a good pick me up!
    Prayers for you Annie
    Love Chris
    Can you get to Drs on the Monday ,instead of waiting till Tuesday .
    Sausages an eggs…..oh can I have some I’m starved…day 3 of my liquid diet!
    Love chris

    • Thanks Chris. My mom is a pretty amazing lady. My prayer for her is peace, more good days than bad, and a quiet passing when she’s ready.

  17. Morning all:
    My equation this am : Sleep does not equal rest !! I slept but am still so tired. All the working and not resting is catching up with me.
    It is really cool out this am with a strong cool wind. Nice break from the heat though. We had rain storms off and on for two days.
    Annie, prayers for you and your mom. I can’t imagine having that many autistic babies in one room. I remember my gs when he was in the constant crying stage. Wore me out ! Hang in there.
    We are having a hot dog dinner after church today. I have a blackberry cobbler in the oven. Must go check on it.
    Sue, I am so glad PT is helping you. I have dropped 8 more lbs. Still a few to go, but I can really tell a difference now. Teaching sunday school this am. Hope my brain stays focused enough. Hate to leave the kids at odds, but must happen. I have the oldest doing some crafts for me, I will let the younger one join in. Should keep them occupied for a rest period. AHHH a nap ! I would love to just go back to sleep.
    Pray you all have a wonderful day !
    Love to all

    • Well, Tonie, sounds like you are making progress even if it is wearing you down. Maybe you can leave the kids on their own a bit more when they’re used to all of your surroundings and you can nap. You sound so very busy with church, home and grands, however life sounds good and productive. We also had rain last night but we’re pretty used to it.
      Good for you for the weight loss. I know that’s difficult but also know you’re using the Shaklee drink and it will help keep you strong. Jim did quite well on it as you recall. He gained the weight back but I don’t believe you will.
      Hope Ms. Alice is hanging in there and getting better treatment. Do try to get some rest, okay? Love, Sue

    • Thanks for the prayers Tonie. It is a lot of autistic kids at once. And they are there all day now that school’s out (most of them went to public school programs or ABA for half the day so weren’t there during nap time)
      Hope things are going well. Have you posted any pics of your horse on FB?

  18. Yep sue you are right independent to the end.But at a price and that could be another accident
    I will see him tomorrow and talk about the safety issues.DD said his speaking was much worse today
    GS went to see him again today before he went home?he stayed with his dad this w.end.his Dad went to see my dad with him as well..I’m not sure that was a good idea as my dad hasn’t seen him for 13 years and it might have embarrassed my dad a bit or been too worrying for him
    My blimmin Tum don’t know it it ibs or diver.But no more icecream for me…
    So so busy .your food sounds good .and I have started eating Albeit scrambled eggs
    Gonna try an get an early night been busy today cleaning before we left ?oh yep we are home now forgot to say

    • Chris, I hope those scrambled eggs were delicious and settled in okay. These bouts of bowel disruption can be so frustrating. I’ve lost weight myself with a recent round of it. Take care and eat safely.
      I have a feeling you’re right about how your Dad felt about having someone see him in his current condition after so many years. Poor man. More blows to his pride. Glad you are home and know you have many challenges this week and pray they go well for all involved. Life…huh. I guess all we can do is knock it down one day at a time. Love, Sue

  19. Annie, you have my prayers. A blessed visit with your mom, though. 🙂

    Tonie, congratulations! Hang in there and keep trying to get rest when you can.

    Chris, I pray you get relief for your tum soon.

    Slowly gaining some energy back. Friday sent me into an RA flare with fatigue and pain, but today is better. Best to all! You are in my thoughts and prayers.

    • Lyn, please take care so you can continue to get better. Love and healing thoughts, Is your gut okay? Sue

    • Lyn- Loved seeing all the FB pics of your time in Boston. So sorry you’re all flared up and paying the price now… Gentle hugs.

  20. Well folks here i am awake.its 6am
    It can so take it out of you..I dread them for how they make you feel after..just rest as best you can
    You lost 8 pounds you said.. well done you can certainly tell that amount’s a whole dress size
    I must get back on my diet .ithink I’ve had a good start these last days
    It’s spaghetti and cheese tonight ..well just a small portion!
    I’m going in the garden this morning to fiddle about with it..just an hour ,no interruptions will be great.cup of tea made by DH will be perfect
    You know the bit about being at the shed.they are all so healthy over there .some older than us.they are all riding there bikes and walking and no cares..out for the whole day …I’m ashamed to say I’m envious .i want some of it…I just don’t want all this sh.t ..but back here I feel not so isolated from what I’ve got..if that makes sense. But I love being at the shed as I think I absorb some of their energy as I chat to them.such carefree people
    Well gonna get up and have toast and tea ,great when you haven’t had it for a while
    How are you today.i do hope you had a better night . You need better after the time you had with your mum..your Dh must be so worried .i wish for a better day for you

    • Chris, I understand that whole envy thing. I often feel it if only briefly for those who can go out to eat all the time or take in a movie. I miss and understand what I’ve lost. I think it’s great that you can escape the isolation of life and its restrictions however, even if it does cause a bit of pain sometimes. These are the cards we are dealt, so many of us, as we play this game of life. It may not always be pretty but it does have its bright spots. Sorry to hear you’re having a heat wave over there. Love ya, Sue

  21. Well my mind is made up and it’s breaking my heart but I am taking little Miss Blaze back to the kitty rescue tomorrow morning. I have done everything in my power to give her a happy living home and just cannot get her to stop the biting. Called my vet yesterday and all they could offer was to change her medication. I already feel mean fir having to force medicine into her as it is. I think she needs a family with kids to play with and someone who is home must of the day.

    • Annie, I think you’re right about the kind of family your kitty needs. It’s not your fault; it just is what it is. I’m sure there is one out there that would work out better for you. Maybe you should go with a younger one and let them pick you. That always worked for me with our cats in the past.
      I hope you will think about changing jobs. I have a feeling you are experiencing burn out at a time when you are undergoing physical pain as well as grief with your Mom’s condition. Hugs. Love, Sue

      • You hit the nail on the head Sue. I think the burnout is coming as a result of pain, grief, and stress decreasing my ability to cope with the noise level, neediness of the children and drama from the co-workers. I’m just kinda done: like “stick-a-fork-in-me” done… 😫

  22. Oops- Hit enter too soon. She needs someone who is home most of the day. She just freaks out while I’m gone all day to work. Anyway, I tried my best and I just can’t give her what she needs so I’m hoping they can find her a good home where she will be happy. She might need to be a farm kitty where she can be with humans but have the ability to run off some of her energy chasing mice. I don’t know. But I will miss her. The 5% of the time when she was sweet, she was very lovable. 💔

  23. Hi Peeps …. I wrote a post last night and saw that it was there and now it is gone. Has this happened to anyone else?
    I am not up to doing it over at the moment.
    Beat wishes to all …. Pommum Brenda

    • Pommum, you posted on the new blog and we all saw it and are answering it. This is the one before it. Sue

  24. Hi Brenda
    How tiresome for not to me…they’ve disappeared as I’ve posted them but not once they were there

  25. Yea I have done sue
    It’s never happened to me,only when I’ve got trouble posting and it vanishes
    Going to look at the nursing home I’ve had my eye on tomorrow .its got good reports and they have a room free!
    So the hard work starts!
    At shed today still 30 outside and it’s reached 37 here today .going to be cooler tomorrow down to 25c…..whew
    Sitting here with the shed all’s the weather with you sue
    So sorry for Ms Alice she sounds a lovely lady
    Oh and I keep saying take it easy …..!mmm
    Going to wash my hair now up early and back home tomorrow .have eye appt ,visit my dad and then the home…..good job it’s cooler


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