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I've been reading about staying positive which can be difficult for me. One of the things I've been trying to remember is that even with my health issues, I've not lost everything. I made a short list of things I've learned to do while in bed and while pacing at home. The reason I learned these things is that it's difficult to sit. It's painful so I end up  lying down or I keep moving while I'm up. Standing still doesn't go well for me but as long as I keep moving I'm okay. So, here is my photo for the 17th of this month and my list of things I can still do:

  1. Complain. I can do that in whatever position I find myself in. I complain in English and American Sign Language. I'm currently learning French, which isn't killing me this time around.
  2. Paint. I can paint and draw while lying down. I've covered my bed so as not to ruin my mattress. It was my greatest concern that I wouldn't be able to paint because of needing to lie down so much.
  3. I can sew while lying down. This was a welcome surprise. I have to be a little more prepared but it is still possible. I just finished and adopted out two dolls and I've started on a custom order doll today.
  4. I can study and take notes in bed or on the sofa as long as I have my tablet and supplies with me. I can read and pace at the same time which I do quite often.
  5. I can produce hand written letters of encouragement to others while in bed. It's important to always reach out.
  6. I can still receive visitors if I'm on the sofa.
  7. I stand while making tea but I have a no spill cup that allows me to drink tea in bed. Yup, gotta have that tea no matter what.
  8. I can enjoy the sunshine on my face from the comfort of my bed. I can see the sky and hear the birds and ducks.
  9. My smile isn't broken because I'm lying down. I still have a sense of humor.
  10. Possibilities. Options. Hope.

...continue reading "What I can still do"

1

A video for friends.

At the end of the video I said these are my 'frogs' but only Cheesy the Chubby Frog stars in this short vid. ...continue reading "Cheesy the Chubby Frog and Aquarium Therapy"

2

I told Dr. D I feel creatively constipated, and I do. I'm struggling with this painting. Her dress isn't finished. It'll eventually be a little girl in a red dress  ...continue reading "The Child’s Face. Depression Rising."

When thinking about losing Jane, I don't feel crippled by it. I feel bad about that because it's almost like I should be out here falling apart, but I'm not. I feel bad that some reached out but she died anyway. I feel bad about that but I hope they realize they did make a difference. Reaching out always makes a difference.

There's a huge hole where Janie used to be. The house isn't the same at all, but it's still better because she was once here. I think that's what I still feel the most, very grateful.

My heart is heavy concerning my brother. I heard him play the cello, my favorite instrument. I thought I was going to burst into tears. I've never heard him play the cello before, just the violin, so watching and hearing him was rather moving. A long time ago I said I never got to tell him how proud I am of his accomplishments with music and with the children's orchestra. You could see in his face that he loved his job. ...continue reading "Cats and Violins"

I'm behind on everything. Today I need to complete some reading and write a few things up. I also need to clean my studio area so I can start a painting that is now 10 days behind schedule. The good thing is, I know what I'm painting. There's no need to stress over it.

I'm stressing over the light bill. In 7 days time it's due and I don't have but twenty dollars to my name. It worries me. I don't think I've been in this position in a very long time. I'm going to keep painting, keep sewing and keep praying that my needs will get met. Yeah, I'm worried. ...continue reading "Damage Control and Tea Time"

Today Dr. D and I discussed saying "no" to my mother and the consequences of doing so. My teeth began to chatter. I was rocking back and forth. I had to get a hold of myself.

Last night I was in the bedroom and instinctively turned to verify she wasn't in the doorway but for just a second I saw her. Obviously it was my head playing games, but for a second I thought I saw her standing there, which is why I turned to look. I had a scarf hanging over the door which created a figure in my peripheral vision. Turning to look isn't new. I have to force myself to not look at the door. I have to tell myself there's no way she's in the house, stop worrying, remember I'm safe now. But that's not enough, I have to look at the bedroom door to ease my mind. ...continue reading "Therapy Review: Control. Gaining confidence."

I often sound like I hate her. I don't. I sound like I haven't given an ounce of forgiveness. I think an important point about giving my mother forgiveness is knowing she never asked for it or acknowledged needing it. She never knew she'd received it.

Several years ago I said I give my mother full forgiveness. What that means is I asked nothing back from her crimes against me. Her debt to me was dissolved. This personal step wasn't an over night process. It was/is a personal understanding and has only to do with what was done to me. What was done to others is a totally different story.

What do I mean when I say I forgive my mother? It's clearer to explain what I don't mean.

  • Forgiveness doesn't erase guilt or payment to society for crimes against me and them.
  • My pain hasn't ended, it's been redirected and eased.
  • Even after forgiveness there is still a lot of work in therapy to complete.
  • It doesn't mean there's no anger or mean that the abuse doesn't matter.

What does forgiveness mean for me? It means and meant:

  • I stopped asking for justice in my case.
  • It meant I didn't want to kill her anymore.
  • I didn't want to see her suffer or die the way she died.
  • If ever the law decided she must be charged, I didn't want to be the one on the other end of handing down sentencing for what she did to me. That's the key right there. I didn't want to be the one to hand down sentencing.

Acknowledgement from the public, financial compensation, life in prison and even her death can not give back what was so viciously stolen away. ...continue reading "The who, what, when, where and how of forgiveness"

There were only two of us but we had a nice time. We didn't do anything formal, just tea and cake. One can make tea and cake sound stuffy if important facts are left out. I had the tea already and she brought Little Debbie's. It was a nice visit though with some catching up as well as learning about one another.

I'm just now getting to know her. Interestingly enough, her mother was my foster mother making her a foster sister when I was a child. Small world isn't it?

It's sometimes difficult to be in the same room with someone who knows way too much about me, especially since I didn't get to pick and choose what she knows.  My sister decided this exposure for me which I find unacceptable and disempowering. I don't know what preconceived ideas she has about me, I only know she seems to like me...and yet I don't trust it. Why? In general I don't trust women. That is first and foremost but there's also the concern of being judged. ...continue reading "Tea, Chat and Trust"

One thing that's been on my mind is getting the last item for my disaster readiness bag aka "go bag". I have yet to include beef jerky, but other than that, my "go bag" is complete.

In an entry called Emergency Kit and Chronic Illness, I talked about the importance of documents that aren't stored on a device. I think those without power would agree that medical documents and phone numbers on a device with a dead battery is essentially useless. What I accidentally discovered is that I can store items inside empty medicine bottles because they're waterproof. I thought about what other items are waterproof and came up with a short list:  old Tupperware, a tall coffee cup with an auto-lock, no spill lid or an old coffee thermos. Papers inside these items would be dry and safe.  ...continue reading "Now and for the long haul of disaster recovery"

Slaw

Art Title: Slaw
Art by: Faith Magdalene Austin
Size: 8.5 x 5.5 inches
Media: Watercolor, ink
Finish: signed, dated, heat sealed, unmounted
Style: Outsider Art, Surreal

I think my friend Angie got me started on watercolor pens. I'm happy she did. I all but ruined my first set but have since acquired a new set which I totally love. My next art supply purchase will be a second small pallet I can take with me to therapy. As it turns out, the watercolors have taken on a large role in art during therapy sessions.

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