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I'm still sick but at least I'm up on an on the laptop. In a day or so I'll photograph the two new teddy bears made from soft, pink brushed suede. And after I've finished with this cold/ flu /dang disease, I'll finish the plastic bag holder doll I started.

I look forward to this winter being over! This stuff is getting very old. Clyde is bored out of his mind right now. We used to take a few walks a day, now we go out and get back in as soon as we can.

Sunday we had an ice storm.  Despite the storm I still had to take out the dog. So I got up and took him out then promptly fell on my backside on the ice. Turns out I'm not an Olympic skater. I did a 9 point fall and landed half way in the bush and half way on the ground. It was ugly, really. I laugh now but at the time I wasn't laughing at all. My breathing has been difficult in the cold so when I fell I hadn't been breathing that well, and I fell very hard! It knocked the wind out of me, scared me. I sat there for a minute paying attention to my heart and feeling all over to make sure I was okay. I'm okay, less a little pride, but okay.

How I've missed my laptop. I can't type on my tablet. The problem with the laptop is that it keeps trying to update Windows 10 but it can't. My computer won't restart correctly or something and so it shuts down. I restart manually then the computer tells me the update didn't take and will uninstall. Once I log back in the update tries to install again. I've done this no less than 15 times. This simply will no restart correctly for the update.

Because this thing is going to eventually crash, I've taken the time to back up everything on flash drives. I've also got the recovery flash drive for the computer if that needs to be done sometime down the road. It's just the update isn't taking. I wish I knew how to deny the update.


I have a cold or something. I'm not feeling that great.

My laptop is down. I have a tablet but it doesn't let me write easily. I have to make too many corrections.

Michelle is doing most of therapy right now. Until the cold, she was drawing and writing to Dr D. Dr D suggested we remind her that we're safe and can speak to him about anything. She doesn't trust him but she does want him to do for her, what he did for Robert which is to hear the worst of her memories. She wants to unload and feel a measure of relief, too.

This month is difficult bc of an anniversary of my brother. I can only shake my head! I'm not as angry with him as I was and I no longer blame my mother for his suicide. I can't for the life of me remember why I blamed her.


"The Unseen" is a painting by my 12 year old alter named Michelle who has been out quite a bit lately. She's doing therapy with Dr. D right now so there will surely be more art from her displayed on the blog.

The art piece was started by layering paint then smearing ink until she found an image she wanted to pull.

She prefers the 'dirty art' look and doesn't pay attention to if it's considered pretty. She layers faces and shadows, piling them one on the other in burnt orange, turquoise, black and a bit of white. There is also a large bird and an abstract tree that roots from the head of the main face.

Title: The Unseen (original art)
Art by: Faith Magdalene Austin
Media: Acrylic, ink on paper
Size: 7 x 10
Finish: Signed, heat sealed, unmounted
Style: Abstract Surreal

I was recently asked why I don't do larger art. I still do most creating, including this piece and small sewing projects, while in bed. My mattress is covered well so as not to look like a painters pallet. I've also got a nice little sewing box. Because so much time is spent in bed, I won't be able to complete large art projects. It's one of the things I had to accept awhile back. I do what I am capable of doing which means a lot is done in a way that accommodates Lupus and CRSD symptoms.

Even though my dog Clyde is on the bed with me as I paint, to date he has not been splattered with paint. He remains brown and white. 🙂

Sir Clyde Austin Dreams of Light

The original painting called, "The Unseen" is available through Etsy or PayPal.


I'm no longer sleeping the way I was and the med side effects are starting to get better.

I got what I asked for, a reprieve from menopausal symptoms while managing shingles. I should see a start up of symptoms in the next few days but I did get almost two weeks of relief that I so very much needed. The Black Cohosh has been increased a third time with the hope that there will be less depression and more functionality. Anxiety related to PTSD has been through the roof but the other stuff is calming down.



Still sleeping and recovering. Tuesday morning I went for treatment but here we are Thursday evening and I'm still exhausted. My pain levels are back to 7-8. My appetite is still gone.

Clyde has been beside me the last few days which has been helpful. Despite sleeping so much, I get up by alarm 4x a day to take him outside. Today we played ball briefly.

I'd describe my mood as baseline. No suicidal issues and no self harm. Anxiety is high and being managed. I'm still on reprieve from perimenopause symptoms. I'm typing in bed but I'll soon return to the laptop.



Again, this is not a rough patch, it's a field w pits and quicksand. It's a field where pain is as common as flowers.

I've had another small emergency doctor visit bc my pain has been too high for too long. Between Lupus, CRSD and shingles, my threshold was met quickly.

When the pain stays high like that I go in w/o a second thought. I used to feel bad for needing to be given pain treatment but they know me and treat me well. They don't act like I'm just there to get high.

I'm home now and somewhat tired but my mood is ok. Interestingly enough, I now have to try to deal with the pain meds. It's not like dealing with the pain, but there are issues related to that type of pain medication in my body. At the moment there's relief from what I was feeling so I won't complain too much. 



The Pages Were All WrongDr. D and I discussed a situation with my sister that came up that required I stick to my boundaries, as hard as it is to do.

Despite my mother having gainful employment, we spent a lot of time living in the car. I have slept with frost over me, slept on the wet street and in the sweltering night. Homelessness for me is a huge trigger. It makes me recoil, makes my mind want to run and never think about the horrors of it, the way it strips you of dignity and humanity. The way people hate you, judge you and look down on you. Routine homelessness in my childhood and young adult life with my mother, has left a scar that opens into a wound during the winter time.

When I'm cold I can't breathe because I can see myself lying under a blanket in a broken down RV with no electricity, no water, no heat, no lock on the door. I could see my own breath, see the frost build up on my blanket and hear my sister cry curled up beside me. We were so close to one another I couldn't breathe. There with us should have been my teddy bear, the last possession I owned, but it was lost in the car we'd slept in that ended up being stolen. Homelessness is a horrible trauma I wish on no one at all, so why have I refuse to offer my home to my sister in need? ...continue reading "Therapy Review: Hard Choices and Boundaries with Family"


This morning's nightmares are the straw that could break the camels back as I struggle with the emotional side of health and pain levels. In order to keep walking the line I need to take a moment to breathe.

I feel a bit angry. I woke up angry from dreams and memories that disgust me. There are the sounds of abuse that haunt me that will be drowned out by my choice of music and honestly a few tears. It feels important to take a moment, pause, let myself cry and then go forward.

During this breather I'm not answering the phone or texting but there will be a lot of emergency self soothing. I'm planning grilled cheese sandwiches and soup. I'm going to snuggle with my electric blanket that smells of lavender.

Today it's me, Super Clyde, my sketchbook and a big pot of tea. In a beautiful, hot, lavender and rose bath, I'm going to wash away every bit of last night's dreams and make sure I have enough inner strength to be productive.



Jordan's RiverAfter reading an entry about generations who didn't understand that they had been victimized, I was reminded of an old poem. Though not my best writing, it describes the 'good old days' when people didn't rock the boat, they just accepted their circumstances, their community guidelines and gender roles. And some didn't realize they were being conditioned to be a passive part of society.

I read an entry about three generations of women who didn't realize they had been violated in some way. What I read made me want to jump in the room of that situation and go, "Can't you hear yourself? Don't you understand you're describing a violation of your person?" But I wasn't there to say that. I read on, shocked, horrified and saddened for the individuals who live veiled by decades of community conditioning. ...continue reading "#Metoo and You Should Too"


There's decent news to share in the way of an update I had this rash situation for 2 weeks, but w Lupus I didn't panic because Lupus throws rashes at you all the time. I'd been putting my thieves oil on it but it did nothing for the pain. That's why I went to the doctor, terrible pain. That's when I was told I have shingles.  Friday's appointment also told me I'm 2 weeks in to a 3 to 5 week endurance race. It hurts something fierce but I'm almost at half point when the virus will be shut down, dormant or whatever you want to call it. That's decent news. I'm not at the beginning and I'm no longer contagious.

I'll be on meds a bit longer and see my doc in 2 weeks.

List of foods not to eat when you have Shingles.
Did you know you're not supposed to eat chocolate when you have shingles? What? What kind of horrific disease do you have to have, to be told you can't eat chocolate? I mean seriously? It's insult to injury. If they'd said you can't have tea I would have laughed out loud. ...continue reading "Shingles: Decent news on Friday"

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