Friday, September 15, 2017

Say goodbye

This is old.  Like 2013 old.  An online friend of 10 years just vanished over night. We all struggled with the loss. I wrote this at the time. We later reconnected and learned what happened.

As I am approaching my surgery date, I am having gut pings to "say goodbye"

I know totally irrational, but hey that is how my mind works. I think I may do just that. Wouldn't you want to hear all the wonderful things your loved one has to say about you?

I don't do these to be morbid. It blesses me to see in print just how blessed I am to have so many people who I love and admire in my life.


Pitching to the left I struggle through the familiar darkness. My path uneven at the moment. Needing to sit quietly by your light I scan the landscape. Locating it I trudge toward it.

I find your lantern firmly nailed to the fence post.

My own lantern slides from my hand.  I stand quietly, like a lost child.

slowly I reach up and hold your lanterns handle. Your presence still strong. Your love of us still warming the handle.

 I stand quietly bawling.

Not for me.

Partly for you, partly for all those hurting souls out there who will miss the change to meet you and find comfort and understanding in your gentle words.

Being a writer, my mind wants an answer, and not finding one
it fills in the blanks.

Two possible paths here stretch before you, one you were layed off. Two your working silently behind the scenes.

Either way, my friend = pain for you. To suddenly be disconnected from the voices of all the souls you moderate.

I pray you are working quietly behind the scenes. The thought of you being unemployed and facing that panic and uncertainty, just breaks my heart.

If that is the case, then to you offer this advice.

You will be okay, Don't allow the fear and uncertainty to stop you. This moment in time is just another beast. You have fought bigger ones. Clear your head so you can hear your heart, and it will lead you to your next job.

I pray you will find a job that will offer you financial security and love you as much as you were loved here. I hope in your next job you are blessed to have a Paja working there too. I hear they are nice to work with.

And if your path is still with XXXXXXX, well that changes things.

To that time line I would offer this advice.

Take a deep breath.  Change is never easy, and with big corporations and there love of monkeying with stuff, you had better fasten the latches on your life jacket. In cases like this, you must go with the flow. Hang on and do what you need to do to keep your job. Be loyal to your own needs, and who signs your check.

We know you love us. We know what ever the path is, you are hurting. You are grieving. *hands you a tissue* It will ease with time my friend. You may feel isolated and alone, but we got your back sister. Wraps the SA pink blanket firmly around you.

I want you to know that "change" isn't a friendship breaker. That you will be my friend until one of us breaths no more.

My offer to do a print run of all my children's books for your grand babies will never expire. All you need is ask.

I'm still here. The board is still here. Your SI family is still here. Right here where you tacked your lantern.

when you posted about the lights of the board. I got an uneasy feeling in my gut. Reading between the lines like I do I picked up a second meaning. Intended or not, it came across as a salute and a "letting go"

Thank you for that.

Thank you for all your hard work over the years.

Thank you for always hearing me....all of me's.

Thank you for cleaning up the olives I dropped all over the SI and SA boards.

Thank you for laughing at my silly stuff.

Thank you for drying my tears.

and thank you for doing such an incredible job over the years.

I will look for you at the cat park, the redwoods, the ocean, and all the other magical places out there, because I know you will do just as you commanded us to do. Shine on.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

When TOO ask about someones scars (SI discussion)

Good just can't please me sometimes.

I just posted about when its NOT okay to ask about someones scars and here I am writing the opposite today!

Was with one of the kids at an initial pediatrician visit and she pulled me aside to discuss my child's case.

As we were talking her eyes kept going to my scars then back to me.

It was distracting.

I really wanted to hold up my arm and say, "stop for a minute, look, satisfy your curiosity and them ask me about them so we can go back to our conversation, without distractions."

I don't normally wear long sleeves, that is a personal style choice, I have never really cared for them even before I had scars.  I have found as I have grown and am out doing things with my children (like face to face with teachers/doctors etc) I will consciously consider long sleeves or a sweatshirt to wear. Not to hide my scars, but to project and image that will protect my children from being subjected to "OOOOH, your mama is crazy, she's all scarred up!" Also from having to answer questions from their friends.

My battle with living with SIV (self inflicted violence) is not their fight.

My mission to be open about it also my decision, not theirs.

I do get gut pings when I choose to conceal them. Not sure why. I don't go around actively flaunting them. Honestly I forget there there most of the time. As I did that day I mentioned earlier.

It was the doctors looks that reminded me, 'oh hey, I'm covered in scars.'

Ack, I hadn't even remembered to think about covering them up for this appointment.

I think how I handled it was the right way to do it. I didn't address it. I kept the conversation on subject and ignored her glances. There is a right time to ask about scars, and that wasn't the situation.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

back from walkabout

I'm so excited!

My writers mind has come back from where ever the heck it went off to back in August of 2016!!

Which means I can finally finish Skinned!!

For a while there I thought I was finished as a writer.  Which was freaking me out because if I end up a crippled old woman, that would have been my only skill I could use to earn a living with.

Well in my dreams anyway.

My mind has returned with a new portfolio of story ideas, which I am trying to lasso and herd into my round pen so I can sort through them.

Back to square one ...I'm having to stop and get the bucks out again. LOL!

Friday, September 8, 2017


Ladies let talk menopause.

In the text books its pretty cut and dry:

There is a period of time you are going to experience Peri-Menopausal symptoms and then after a year without a period you reach Menopause.

yeah. Riiiiiiiiiight.

They left out a few of the stages along the way.

Like Menorunonandon. Pronounced:  meno-run-on-and-on. Defined as, when your period just refuses to stop in your 50's and just keeps coming as you are approaching 60.

And my favorite one, Mennope. Pronounced: men-NOPE. Defined as when your period stops for 10-11 months and you get really fricking excited that this is IT and your marking days off on the calender and planning the party annnnnnnd your period shows up.

I'm thinking that menopause is the right term for this. Your periods just pause for a bit...they don't ever stop.

Sure, we can keep the terminology "menopause"  in the queue of the grand scale of our menstrual cycles, but we need to be clear that after all is said and done there are these final stages.

Menostopitjuststopit! and MenoIcan'tbeleiveI'mbuyingtamponsateightyyearsold

show and tell

Sorry regular readers I am hijacking my own blog this morning for some show and tell for my physical therapist's. Yup that's plural cause my pelvis is so &%$#@ up unique it needs its own entourage.


It's Thursday night at 9:50 pm and I am just now feeling better.  While wed session didn't flare up the groin pain this week, its sure making my back scream bloody murder. LOL.

picture one - original injury 12-25-1993

picture two - check up x-ray of repair job early 1994

picture 3 - cat-scan June 2017

picture 4 - still from cat-scan - hips/sockets

picture 5 - the reason why my back is screaming bloody murder Dx'd with herniated disks L4/L5/S1 in 1992, and it has just deteriorated over the years. I typically keep my back in neutral position or it makes my back spasm/cramp like crazy. Do you love that starburst from the plate/screws? which will make MRI-ing the groin pain area challenging/impossible?

picture 6 - the spot on the cat-scan where the groin pain is. Your looking at my left hip/side view.  if you go to where the cursor is on the picture and go to the right a bit the abdominal wall goes down and looks like it is split in two. Follow it down to where it goes back together that triangular shape under it (above the horizontal black line - which is the distortion from the metal plate sitting on the pubic bone) is where the pain is.

I have a copy of the CT if you are interested in seeing it.

The rest of my readers can get a copy and play Dr. House for the low price of just 23 payments of  $19.95.

"That's not too bad." SI discussion

My daughter graciously  lets me be a member on her chat server. I am not about to allow my 10 year old free range on the internet. The members know I am her mother and "an old person."

They feel free to tag me if I need to be aware of stuff.

One such day I was summoned to the board.

I usually just read along and don't comment unless need/asked.  Partly because I am old and slow and can't type that fast anymore.

This night one teen member was upset and had been drinking.

She was bragging about how much she had been drinking and then posted a graphic picture of her arm that had a two inch scratch on it.

She: "I ended up scratching myself."

other poster: "That's not too bad."

I cringed. Ugh, dude. that is the worst thing you can say to a self injurer. They are hurting and showing you the proof. They are exposing there soul! They are looking for validation and help all in one bloody scream...and you're blow them off by saying,  "That's not too bad." Your words are devastating, hurtful and cruel.

Then I realized.

The other poster had no idea it was self inflicted.

People don't go around assuming others self injure. People don't recognize self inflicted injuries.

But it goes back even deeper then that.

We as a people have never been taught how to correctly respond to others pain.

Think about it. When a toddler falls the first thing the mother does is pick them up and tells them "You're okay. You're okay."

Mother applies bandage to scrapped knee, kisses it, "all better now."

Father to son after a bike riding lesson ends with a crash, "shake it off son."

We grow up being taught pain is ours, but it can be turned off by others at their will. Even more basically, if your wounded and in pain, get up and keep with the pack or the predators will pick you off.

One of the first times Richard knocked off my chair in therapy was when he looked at my scabbed arm and said with quiet compassion, "That looks like a lot of pain."

I use that now. Cause holy crap if a person is to a point that they are reaching for self injury as a coping skill, they are indeed in "a lot of pain."

It doesn't matter if they are covering in 3rd degree burns or have a paper cut. The act of self injury is what your should be responding too, not the wound.

It's not as easy as it sounds. Person one show up at the ER  with 100 razor blade slices running up their arm. Person two shows up with a black eye and a bruise on their forehead. You can guess who is going to get more intensive treatment and make it pass the triage stage first?

I sought treatment for my burns when they were still little. Like the size of a pencil eraser. Got blown off by the medical staff. They kept increasing in size until I found the magical size that got the attention of the staff. I might not have such large burn scars now if my tiny ones had been taken seriously from the get go.

There is no easy answer to this dilemma. You can't assume an injury is self inflicted....and in certain cases you can't assume its not.

When people ask about my large burn scar on my arm, I can say honestly. "I burned it."

They usually follow up with, "How?"

This shows their minds are not even going the self injury route.

I answer back, "I. burned. it."

Reaching back to the conversation with the self injurer on the chat channel.  Before I could even get my brain into response mode, the conversation direction shifted. The girl shut down and closed off.

As most self injures do when there pain is ignored/not seen.

I believe in this day and age of online chats groups, that starting in middle school, the kids should be given the knowledge on how to do age appropriate online support. So when faced with something like this they can have some skills to fall back on.

After a summer of reading their chats, I can tell you kids are reaching out and trying to get help from their peers. I have seen they trying to support each other though anxiety attacks, depression, drinking, suicidal thoughts, etc, ect. The want and need to support each other is there.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Employee of the month

There are many things in this world that you should never turn your back on. The tide, bonfires, angry bulls and night shifts with ballot boxes.

Oh the wicked wicked fun we used to have on the night shift at HIHO. Heh...and someday when the statues of limitations has run out I will tell you all about it.

It was 7 people alone with 8 1/2 hours worth of time and only 5 of it needed to do the job.  We filled with rest of the time with various things to keep our selves awake.

We read, wrote, talked, did group therapy and  psych experiments on each other and got into mischief.

Once, I came up the hall from my lunch break to find the rest of the night shift stifling hyena type laughter, while scribbling furiously on little pieces of paper.

"what are you up to" I commented placing my jacket on my chair.

Terry looked up. "we're voting on employee of the month."

They all cackled like witches over the brew.

Liz glanced up and filled me in. "you saw the new employee of the month parking spot they are making out front?"

I nodded. Couldn't miss it. They were designating the prized closest spot to the building for the employee of the month.

"Well we thought it would be funny if the first person who could use it, didn't have a car!"

I laughed at the simple irony that would create.

"That is brilliant! Who are you stuffing the ballot box for?" I smiled reaching for my pen to help.

Liz glanced back up over her glasses, "You."

It took us all a good 10 minutes to stop laughing.

The entire night shift deserved and Oscar for there "wow! Paja won?!" surprised performance at the all staff in-service when they announced the winner that month.

It took all my concentration not to heeHAW out loud as I accepted the award because, in the wake of the applause as I approached the administrator, I head the bossy boots of the day shift comment "she doesn't even HAVE a car!!"

My little employee of the month plaque lived in the kitchen drawer out on the farm for years. It always provoked giggles when I would come across it and the memory would surface.

Many years later when I was legitimately honored as employee of the month at RG I couldn't even attend the presentation. There was just no way I could have done that without collapsing into a hysterical belly laughing heap on the floor....besides, it wasn't right for me to get that award...I had a car.