Saturday, September 29, 2012

Isolation...oh yes please.

June 2008 I swallowed 10.7 mci of radiation to attempt to kill/damage my over active thyroid gland.

I had to spend 4 days in strict isolation.

My kids were 6 and 1 3/4. Husband took the time off work and watched them.

I stayed in the back of my pick up. Which was parked in front of the house. I was allowed to make there food so they would call me on the walkie talkie and then go up stairs so I could prep their food then leave the house.

I would have loved to have stayed at a motel, but wanted to be there close in case my hubby needed verbally coached through the four days of kid wrangling. Plus we couldn't afford it.

I wasn't sure how I was going to handle the isolation. I have grown very fond of the physical touches my husband gives me through out the day. I love being near him and hugging him. He told me before we were married that "what ever my faults may be, it won't be giving my wife lack of affection."

He has been true to his word.

I eat up his physical touch. Its like a nutrient that nourishes me.

Four days without it was going to be rough.

The total isolation protocol was this:

4 days strict isolation no closer than 12 feet from ANYONE.
NO neck contact with anyone for 2 weeks (as in you can't touch my neck or hug me where your face is near my neck. Which meant no sleeping in bed with husband for two weeks.
(um, that was the hardest part. I am a spooning junkie)
NO closer than 3 feet from me for one week post isolation
NO contact with babies for 2 weeks - babies suck up radiation like sponges.
No sitting near me or riding in a car with me for longer than 30 min after 1 week of the treatment.

I arrived back at the house after taking the radioactive pill and climbed into the canopy and radioed Coremind to tell him I was home and to check on the family.

They came to the picture window and waved to me. I remember thinking...who is this 4 days going to be longer for, me in isolation, or Coremind alone with his kids and no wifey.

I laid back and opened the book I had brought, and promptly fell sound asleep.

Not just asleep, but ASLEEP. For the first time since conceiving our son in 2001 I slept soundly. There was no sleeping with one ear open listening for the kids or for burglars or house fires, no listening for hungry babies calling for my boobs....nothing. I was responsible for just me.

Literally I was relieved of ALL my parental duties. Actually all my duties as a human!

24/7 non-ending parenting wears you down, I didn't realize just HOW much till that moment.

I think all parents should be put in strict isolation 4 days every year just so they can have a complete break. What a wonderful thing that was.

By day four I was ready to return to my job. Gauging  from the number of times my family came to the window to look out at me in the truck, they were ready for me to return too.

Friday, September 28, 2012


What could be such a vile force, to creep into a man's sanity and gnaw a hole? Thus allowing the liquid madness to seep in and jell...its destructive tendrils flaying out to take root like a cancer.

"Sedronomy" He declares aloud to an unseen jury, and for a moment he appears his true age of twenty-three, as his muscular body tenses pulling him to attention.

Within his psyche the hushed seductive voice of madness oozes from one shadow to another whispering as it goes.

He wilts into an old man and soundlessly sobs as he pounds the backs of his scarred hands onto his quivering thighs. His cobalt blue eyes clench tightly as he begins again to recite combinations of the endless verbal rubics locked in his mind, in an attempt to find the combination that will free him.

"snakes, cakes, big fat lakes...two  on two off, two on two off....sedronomy, hydronomy, anon-omy, anon-omy,... anon-omy" He arches back as his pale face grimaces. He grabs his disheveled shaggy brown mane and pulls at it, as if that will ease the internal pressure.

He is held by two orderlies as the nurse with lilac-rose perfume on coaxes him to relax his woody lips so she can pour in 15 cc of cloudy grape juice and Thorazine.

For a moment he resists, enjoying the sensation of being held, temporarily relieved of responsibility, as they are now in charge of holding him together. Keeping him whole and preventing him from shattering into a million pieces.

The loud taste of rotten moldy barley assaults his numb pallet, followed quickly by the skin sucking bitterness of the grape juice.

He swallows and comes up gasping for air...reborn by chemical baptism.

The madness laughs its deep rumbling laugh and goes no where. The drug will paralyze normal brain function and the madness will spread its dark gospel to the unresisting.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Crabby Cranks

Warning crabby - venting - cranky - growling - grumbly - type of morning

Weekdays promptly at 6:30 the neighbors German shepard starts barking when the bus arrives to pick up her son.

The walls of our house are thin. Reeeeeeeaaallly thin. So it sounds like she is sitting beside the bed barking.

I am not a morning person. A lot of my work nights I don't get home till 3:00 am....fall asleep by 4 am if I am lucky.

So let me tell you how much I enjoy the am bark fest.

I have no doubt that someday soon the sleepy one, aka THE BITCH will get up and unleash a verbal tirade of screams out the window at said dog and the owner who stands there every morning and does nothing.

So that sets the tone for my am's mon-fri.

Then at 7:00 I have to get up my family and wrestle them to get the day started.

As I said I am NOT a morning person.

I would make the perfect military weapon of mass destruction.

We interrupt this program to bring you this news update....The entire population of Oregon was annihilated this morning by the military after the accidental deployment of their P....General RG Pouge had this offical statement to release...."We accidently set the alarm for 7 AM instead of PM, heh, oopsie."

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Fat toad

I have been insanely busy, and this isnt the post I planned to write....but I want (need?) to write.

TRIGGER for death and suicidal thoughts - a morbid peek into my head and what is rolling around in there tonight.


Feels like I have a fat toad in my belly, slimey...warty...gross...heavy and poisonous. Sitting there making me feel bloated and barfy.


And making it worse is that stickie note on the calender that says I have a doctors appt on Tuesday.

I don't go to the doctors unless I think I am dying.

So that should tell you what I think my prognosis is.

I am always ready to die. Something about being suicidal my whole life makes the thought of death very appealing.

I do NOT have health insurance. I do NOT like racking up medical bills. I do NOT want to go to the doctors.

But I am out voted.

I would just silently die from what ever is going on with me and no one would ever know, just one day my family would be like HELLS BELLS our mama died!

My children are not old enough to fend for themselves yet. I can't die until they both know how to use the stove and make there own food.

My husband is good at learning things, but I don't think he would relish the idea of having to learn to be me.

So as I said I am out voted. I go to the doctor because my family needs me.

That frightens me.

Them needing me binds me here. Gives me roots. I no longer have that freedom to say heck with it I am going to attempt suicide/plan my death.

In a way they control me.

But they can't control my mind. Who, with this fat toad issue, is working over time on the theory that I am dying.

I have spent soooo much of my life "dying".

Afraid to connect and live. Really live.

afraid of what?

afraid that someone will need me and want me and miss me.

and that I will have to keep on living.

I have been working all week covering for my boss. All those extra nights commuting DID NOT HELP ONE BIT. 45 min one way  to be alone with my head.....and the fat toad. Playing Dr House and running through all the diagnosis.

Then 45 min back, to plan just how I want to die.

What I will tell my children.

What my last hours with my husband would be like.

Nope, not good at all.

I am afraid.

Afraid because I don't have insurance...and to live would mean burdening my family with bills. But the alternative is??

The toad and I will go to the doctors. I will make me tell the doc what is going on. I will tell them I have already diagnosised it as terminal, and please have hospice contact me. Then I will have to go to work that night.

45 min one way to stew over the appt.


Why does life have to be so blasted complicated?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Undiagnosised - Capturing a lie on film

I have been looking through my photo albums a lot lately. There are a lot of empty spaces in them as I have given most of the farm kids the copies I have of their pictures.

This one I still have.

It's puzzled me as to why I didn't pass it on.

That is KSS before she was diagnosed. She is inside my shirt with me and we are crawling about the house.

I love the smile on her face. She could scoot by herself, but not for long or far. There was too much upper body hypotonia (ie weakness) to allow her to crawl properly. She just knew she was supposed to be mobile and it fustrated the heck out of her.

She wanted to move faster then she could so I provided the stable frame work and we would make tracks about the house.

hmmmmm. Oh wow..

After some soul searching and thinking about it. I figured out why I have kept this particular picture.



What you see there isn't the truth. Matter of a fact its a total lie.

That is an almost immobile child moving freely about the house with a giant smile on her face. That smiling woman with her is suicidal and planning her death. The last sun rise she plans to see is on her 23rd birthday.

KSS has the looming diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy heading her way, and I have a slew of psych diagnosis heading my way. We both were undiagnosised at the time that picture was snapped. But the picture doesn't show that. We look....okay.

We both were struggling to function in a world that was normal...while we were not.

At the time that picture was taken these were my goals in life.

1. To have dark circles under my eyes.
2. Have grey hair.
3. Be dead by the time I am 23.

All I had left to cross off that list was #3. And those plans were made and set in stone.

Life was unbearable hard and difficult. The only reason I had not killed my self at that point in time was because of that little person inside my shirt.

I am alive today because that ball of sunshine came into my life.

This was taken when she was 17. I am 5' 6" She is even taller now. the tables have turned. She could stuff me in her shirt now and haul me around. Wouldn't that be a hoot to reshoot that photo in reverse!

Those dark days have faded in intensity over the years. I don't have to struggle so hard to stay alive as I did back then. The love and light of all of my farm kids sure made up for a lot of pain and torment from my peers as a child.

I learned to love them before I could ever learn to love my self. Being there for them made me work hard at getting the self injury under control.

To be needed by them was a gift. My life on the farm was a retreat and a healing journey all in its own.

maybe I should share that one moment on the farm that profoundly altered my existence. Yes I think I will in my next post.

I am heading off to bed to fall asleep day dreaming  about how KSS and I used to ride the horse. Her arms flapping in the wind, as she shouted "SAJA RIDE!!" as we cantered about the field, both of us escaping our predicaments for a moment.

Sunday, September 16, 2012


From a reader's Email in response to my post Best-est older sister on the planet.

"Are there any compromising photos of you out there?"

(wouldn't you like to see the photos that promoted Wal-mart to issue this to me??!!)


Okay, Lets examin the evidence.

 I have a nudie streak a mile wide. I love to mug for cameras...AND I have a very warped sense of humor.

ergo....Too many to post. Waaaaaaay to many to post.

I will share my favorite one and the story behind it.

Did you know that nudy Prince Harry and I have one thing in common?...yup, we both have balls.

Of course mine are beet balls.

Those are my great grandma's pickled beet balls. On an insane laughter filled road trip down to see her we found them in her fridge. They had expired a 1/2 a century ago and we all joked that someday we would find ourselves the recipients of said beet balls at the reading of the will.

I lamented about being 4th in line to inherit them.

We (older sister, younger bro and me) decided to photograph them for posterity, and well things slipped down hill pretty fast after that.

Common, admit it, my choice of pose is legendary. Pickled beet balls are quite photogenic don't ya think?

That's my Tiny Grandma. She was as goofy as her great grand kids. Gosh how that woman loved to laugh.

I don't know who eventually inherited her beet balls, but knowing my family like I do, I am sure I have not seen the last of them. LOL!!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Gold medal performance 2002 Sibling Olympics

Being born when I was had its advantages. One of the greatest things about it, was the lack of things to do. No cable, no internet, dirt had just been invented and only rich families could afford it etc. So to entertain ourselves we did psych experiments on each other used our imaginations.

One branch of that tree was the Out funning the other category. The rules are simple: be funnier than your sibling.

Here is my entry in the Summer 2002  Sibling Olympics.

Email to family:
August 6, 2002
Now I have been thinking....I am a writer, why can't I write my own ask friends/family/internet a zillion questions questionnaire to circulate on the internet? So here it is. Please fill it in and send it back.
Love you all, P.

1. Which credit card is your favorite/has the biggest credit allowance?

2. What is the number?

3. When does it expire?

4. Where do you bank?

5. What is your saving account #?

6. Pass words/PIN #'s?

7. Where do you keep the valuables in your house?

8. When will you be gone next?

9. Do you have an alarm/BIG dog?

To which my big sister promptly replies:

Otay, I fill it out nice, yor sistuh me

1. Which credit card is your favorite/has the biggest credit allowance?
De one wit de shiny face

2. What is the number?
tee for five

3. When does it expire?
It's still alive

4. Where do you bank?
At de bank

5. What is your saving account #?
De bank lady she no dat

6. Pass words/PIN #'s?
Please and thank you

7. Where do you keep the valuables in your house?
Do yew meen da family jewels?

8. When will you be gone next?
I be gone mos of de time fisshin'

9. Do you have an alarm/BIG dog?
De dog he be big dog, he don't set de alarm he can't work de buttons.

BOOM! I was knocked out of medal contention and my sisters flawless performance wins the gold with a 10's across the board!!

Name calling

I would love to write about the funny adventures coming from a family of 12 kids and two parents...but there is one liiiiiiiiiiiittle thing that hinders that.

I don't want to intrude upon their privacy. While I hang my arse out there for everyone to see they may not want to be so exposed.

We don't have normal names so anyone googling my family members, say for a job or security clearance, could happen upon my blog and just by association to me it could cause them to be rejected. Though I don't know why I am a perfectly normal lunatic.

I have thought of ways around that....

Giving us all Borg designations:

I am Three of twelve sister subjunction three of four of unimatrix (maidenname)one.

but that would get cumbersome to type out.

Then how about initials?

P, P, P, R

wait is that me or my sisters...

R, R, R, R, R, R, R, R

huh? with bro is that?

curse my parents (R and P) we all have the same initials!!

How about childhood nick names?

Wog, Booboo, Y, Goya boy, Vacuum, Piss-ant....wait I don't want to be known as Piss-ant for all eternity.

Middle names?

Persephone, Jason, Octavian, Demetrius, Dante, Constantine

....Yikes! that suddenly changes out ethnicity to Greek/Roman. Makes us sound pretentious and stuffy. Plus all of us girls have multiple middle names and my first one sounds like a porn handle.

I could do:

Oldsis, Oldbro, me, Middlebro,Blondbro, Missingbro1, Missingbro2, Missingbro3, Youngerbro, Littlesis, BabyBro, Babysis.

bleah....I think I will just not talk about much simpler.

Yeah that's it.....I am an only child.

Added bonus for those of you who want to see the list of our me. I will share, I think I still remember them all....but you have to share your middle name with me! LOL

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Best-est older sister on the planet

It is one of those things you know, one of those quirky bizarre twist of fate that occurs and leaves everyone dazzled. The simple fact that I was born and incredibly talented writer and my sister was not.   

She is three years older than me. I have spent a lifetime trying to be as cool as her. I have failed at every attempt. She is like the Fonze, perfection of coolness.

She wins at what ever we do...except being tall, I win there. Its a shallow victory though as she has the coolest clothes she can't pass down to me.

OMG are you putting your boobs on the internet again?

Um, no I would never do that.

This post is about my sister. I am just talking about her. Any nipples that happen to be in her pictures are purely coincidental.

Are you through?

Yes. I promise. I won't post another picture of my sister with my nipples.


What? my sister isn't in that picture, that other chickenpoxed arm rocking the calamine lotion war paint belongs to my brother.

You are a lunatic.

A nudie one at that.

You do realize that those in real life, who know me, are now sweating a bit. Wondering what photos of them I might scan in and post on my blog.

Oh yeeaah..... what power! .....don't piss off P if you have ever been her subject for photography!

Though, some of you should just cut to the chase and contact your lawyers now. heh.

Lets just put it this way....if you know me in real life and have hung around with me for any length of can never be president of the USA, because I have photos of you like this:

Which I will sell to the highest bidder.

....wait this blog is about my sister.

That is her in the middle.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012



I have always had questions about the night. Where does it begin? Where does it end? Is night just darkness, and if so is it night when you close your eyes?

November 1965, 2:07 am

The rocker gently squeaks as mama stares at me through blurry eyes. I lay in her arms with my mouth slack and milk dribbling down my dimpled chin. With an exhausted sigh, she rises and arranges me in the cradle. Just as she tucks the last blanket around me, I open my eyes. They are bright, inquisitive and not the least bit sleepy. Mama groans and sprawls in the chair. In the morning she will write in my baby book, "Oh P Lina, how intense you stare at me with your huge blue eyes. I wonder, will you EVER learn to sleep at night?"

July 1970 2:32 am

My family snores as Daddy drives us down I-5 towards home. I lean over the seat, my eyes missing nothing. The hot summer air gusts in the window, bringing me the scents of honeysuckles, blackberries and scorched earth. We round the hill and there like diamonds on a jeweler's velvet, the light of Grants Pass sparkle. I catch my breath and wonder why we waste this magical time sleeping.

February 1972, 2:45 am

I toss this way and that, fighting the blankets. I hear his boots as he comes up the stairs two at a time. Clump-clump-clump. I know what he is here for!

"Come see your new brother!" he exclaims.

I eagerly bound downstairs as daddy wakes my siblings. Baby R________, still coated in vernix, is laying on mama's stomach. His thin lips quiver as he tries out his new voice. My older brother and I fight over who will get to cut his umbilical cord.

December 1974, 2:23 am

I stand there eating his cookies and drinking his milk, while I contemplate my next move. The tinsel on the tree shivers as our cat slinks under the branches sniffing the presents. I muse and wipe the crumbs on the couch. I set about switching tags. Surely Santa meant for me to have the red scooter.

November 1975, 2:34 am

I help Mama slide the turkey into the oven. the dim kitchen smells of sage, pepper and onions. My hands quiver as I shut the door and peer through the little glass window. Mama yawns and wipes her hands on her red quilt robe. "go back to sleep" she whispers. The excitement I feel comes bubbling to the surface and my laughter echoes through the stillness. Mama turns back and with a resigned sigh, leaves me to the night.

August 1979, 2:57 am

The howl of the night wind rouses and bids me to come outside. My long dark hair dances with the shadows as I prance silently through the puddles of moonlight. I linger under the clothes line to savor the aroma of sun-dried towels. Am I alone in the darkness this blustery night? Wheeling out under the rich black sky, I shed my nightgown and streak with the meteorites as they tumble from the heavens.

June 1983, 2:19 pm

"P we have a position open on night shift, would you be interested?" The director of nurses inquires.

Getting paid for staying up all night? Oh please don't torture me so!

October 1990, 2:00 am

Been working graveyard shift for seven years. On my night off I drive to Riverside Park. Under the eerie round luminous lights, I noisily wade through the crunchy oak leaves. I slip down to the edge of the muddy, fast moving, Rogue. Night's enormity intrigues me, I am humbly awed. I don't want a kingdom that is only as far as the eye can see. I want one that extends to the edges of the night!

April 1998, 2:51 am

Been working nights now 15 years. I am at home in this upside down life. My co-workers fight the mid-shift nods, but as always my eyes are bright, inquisitive and not the least bit sleepy. No mama, I laugh, the answer to your question is no. There is just way too much night out there for me to explore.


(c) 5-1998 P. R.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Cat lessons


Placing a warning on this because I am still not feeling well and when I write in this head space it tends to get dark. The B-12 injection has an unpleasant side of effect of nausea. I am on day #3 of 24/7 nausea. My tolerance for dealing with it is slipping.


I keep being drawn to an image that is calling me to write about it.

So often in life nothing really phases us. Nothing hits you in your gut and makes you go OOPPPHHHFFF. When they do occur they impact you, sometimes changing you.

As a writer I collect those moments. They glisten like gold in my writers bucket.

Years and years ago on the farm we had a cat named Tootsie. (yes named for the movie).

She had been found by some children in a junk yard. It had been a blistering August day, over 100 degrees. She and her teen age litter mates had been placed in a stack of tires with piece of sheet metal over it. She was the only one alive.

The vet told us sadly she had suffered brain damage from her abuse.

Having a child with Cerebral Palsy somehow makes that diagnosis not so scary or insurmountable. So she came home with us.

It didn't take long to see the ravages of the effects on her. She used to clean herself like a normal cat, but then couldn't stop and she would lick huge sores all over herself. Sometimes she would just bite herself for no reason.

I was in therapy at the time, working on healing from my own struggles with self injury. It was a ping to my core to see this young cat injuring herself because of the damage in her brain. It gave me lots to think about.

She took up residence on top of the microwave.

Anytime you got in/out of the microwave she would reach down and claw you.

KSS was maybe 6 or 7 at the time and as we cooked dinner one night she stood a the counter staring at  Tootsie.

Finally she asked Grandma and me why she she was clawing people.

Grandma explained, "Her brain was cooked by the heat. She has basic cat instincts but her brain is so damaged she doesn't know how to be a cat."

KSS thought about it for a moment and then turned back to Tootsie. "I'm going to teach her to be a cat."

She reached out her hand, and Tootsie reached out her paw and clawed it. They repeated this several times before KSS ignored the clawing and reached past her to stroke her head.

Tootsie cringed as if she had been hit with a stick.

"I will teach you to like to be petted." KSS said to her, stroking her head again "You should know all cats like to be petted."

The world swam before my eyes as the image of the little girl with brain damage, teaching the cat with brain damage, seared itself to my soul. Unable to catch my breath I slipped out to lay in the yard and cry in solitude.

The images of my therapist reaching out to me and me clawing him, flashed in my mind. How gently and firmly he kept reaching for me...teaching me to be a human.....and reconnecting me with the world I lived in. To work with what was in my brain, not what should have been there. He didn't force me to be normal...but rather to just work with what was left of my soul after the abuse, and teach me to function the best I could within my mental limitations.

We all followed KSS's example and worked with Tootsie. Cat Physical Therapy was a family undertaking.

To love Tootsie was a chore. She bit and scratched. We would wrap her in a towel and hold her and pet her. Sitting her in in our laps and feeding her and touching her. Talking to her and reassuring her. She never sought out human touch so we brought it to her.

I will never forget the day she came to me for the first time and stood on the floor looking up at me. Her skin just twitching and jerking as she decided and then she jumped in my lap. I didn't touch her. I let her fight this battle on her own. She continued her quivery jerking and then laid down.

"KSS," I whispered

She looked over at me.

"Your cat lessons are paying off." I used my eyes to point to Tootsie.

We grinned like maniacs.

She could never be a normal cat. We never asked her to be. To love her meant reaching past the flying claws and teeth most of the time. Cat PT continued her whole life. Each day petting her until the panic and fear left her eyes and we could see a fleeting release of tension in her deep green eyes and we knew we had connected with her.

Years later without cause she moved from the microwave to the plate cupboard.

It caused unrest in the house. A clawing, scabbed covered, long haired, shedding cat isn't the most sanitary thing you would want on your dinner plates.

Knowing how change in her routine upset her, we would gently remove her and put her back on the microwave. She would hop down zip over and scale the counter and claw open the cupboard door and get back on the plates.

This went on for several days.

Finally the stress of being moved daily caused her to start vomiting.

We had no choice them.

She was removed and a baby lock applied to seal the cupboard.

For the second time that cat sent me spinning.

Watching her frantically claw at the baby lock and meow pitifully as she tried to get in. Nothing we could do could comfort her. This change of routine was a coat hanger jabbed in her brain and twisted. You could see the unraveling of her soul. Her meows escalated to a frantic screaming.

The look in her eyes will haunt me forever.

We took turns wrapping her in a towel and rocking her. When she stopped screaming and clawing and biting herself we let her down and she went right back to the cupboard door.

We discussed options.

In the end Grandma placed a box in its side on the microwave and placed several plates in it and shut the box flaps like cupboard doors.

We put in there and shut the box flaps.

There was silence.

We peaked in.

Tootsie starred back at us, and peace returned to the house.

Eventually the vet suggested an avocado based food for her to try to help her self inflicted injuries heal faster. Like a miracle it cleared up her skin. Turned her coat shiny and seemed to calm her somehow. Or maybe she seemed calmer because she was no longer self injuring.

Over the years on the farm as I personally grew and healed I was taught lessons on living and being the cats. In a way I was so nonhuman that the best teachers, by force had to be the animals. The cat lessons from Tootsie still cling to me to this day.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Lantern in the darkness for me


This is not aimed at anyone of you. I am just shaking the dust off that part of me that writes this type of stuff.

Should you find this a gun to your head/heart it is not aimed at you by me. Some truths and all lies belong to us all. any puddle you will find your own reflection.

Vulnerable reader use caution. This part of my psyche takes no prisoners.


"What?" I say, my head jerking up.

I listen quietly to the silence the darkness casts off.

I shift on my fence post and shake my head.

Again the night wind beckons me to come out.

I lean back and suck in the coolness with my nostrels flared like some wild untamed range mare.

Again I hear your soul calling me.

I grumble and I resist the call of your broken soul. My head bobbing like a horse rolling there bit, as I  try to conjure up the words to say to you.

I am comfortable on my fence post and fat from inactivity. I arch my back and stretch reluctantly. "Been out to pasture a long time" I murmur. "The softness and compassion are gone from my vocabulary....are you sure you want me to reach for you dear one?"

Again the silence pleads.

"all.....right" I say collecting my lantern and  hopping off the fence. I set my lantern down and stretch again. "then lets do this."

I kick the lantern over.

The flames rush away from my feet with a woooooooof.

Your eyes dilate and the wave of flames levels the darkness to smoldering dust. You, for a heartbeat, feel fear as your mouth falls agape. This is a side of DOGDANCING you have not seen before.

You exhale the air trapped in your body and the force of it sends the smoke around you rolling back to me.

I part it with a wave of my hands.

"Red rover, red rover, send DOG right over." I say quietly as I take flight.

Your eyes lock open as you watch me closing in on you.

The impact of my body sends up both over and over in the ash. When we come to rest. I sit on your chest for a moment. Both of us panting. Both of us blackened with soot. You close your eyes anticipating my rageful words.

My tears drip like rain and plink on your face.

You open your eyes and search my face.

I scoot off of you and kneel next to you. My head bowed as the tears make tracks down my face.

You reach up to comfort me.

My hand snaps out and grabs your wrist bending it off to the side. "we have wasted our lives, you know."

You squirm as I lock eyes with you. You drawn back aware that I am about to go all caps-lock on you.



I can tap into that part but it will not allow me to write unfocused. That part wants a subject. I am finding my head rolling like a Rolodex looking for someone to focus on and write TOO.

I have never tired to force that voice to just write.


Lets see if I can force the issue.

I am now writing to YOU.

yes, you.


I let go of your wrist and tip my head skyward. Again nostrils flared I suck in the wind.

"There is no one coming for you." I say lowering my eyes to again meet yours. "There is no one out there looking for you. If you want to be a part of this world you have to put forth the effort."

"we are all lost in this world. Surrounded by people and all alone at the same time."

You sit up and sigh deeply. "I am afraid of being hurt, afraid of having my guts ripped up, afraid of being rejected."

I push you down. "Being present in someones life is not the same as being in someones life."

I turn away angry and stand up kicking the dirt. "Its so simple. Look your family in the eye. Listen to them. Stop what you are doing and listen to them...liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiistennnnnnnnnnnn to them. Hear what they are telling you. You are getting glimpses into their are witness to a treasure they will not always share. Childen are spiritual conduits. Do not miss the magic and the wonder in th


Nope can't even trick me into writing today. Its just not going to happen.

I can feel that connection there, but can't force it write. I know its there with in me. I awake from dreams and can taste her on my tounge. I hear the singsongy rhythm she writes to in my ears.

That part of me went walk about a few years ago after the radiation treatment.

Throws myself down and has a temper tantrum.



What are writers suppose to do when there inner voice/muse/whatever dies or gets damaged?

I am not feeling physically well. Been some rough days of late. They are treating me for low B-12 levels. I have swollen lymph nodes across my diaphragm and its painful. My anxiety of course is off the chart as I think I am dying.

I keep remembering the note I was asked to give to a tween child of a patient who died at my work.

It read simply.

"Keep Living. Love Mommie"

I want to write about that note and the secrete I have carried for 20+ years of how I gave that note to her daughter.

Even beyond that I want to look at a mother facing death and struggling to find the words to help her child cope with her looming death. How she stopped focusing on her own self and found the perfect thing to say to her child to help her move on and not get stuck in her grief.

Nothing I will ever write will have as great impact as those four words.

I am struggling with calling the doctor about the painful lymph nodes. Some days I wish I had a handler or a keeper. I am not really capable of taking good care of me. Others, yes, me no.


Maybe my writing is a fluke? Talent vs lucky arrangement of letters?

What will be the last thing I put to paper before I die? Will it be worthy of being read?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

I will carry her.

(This was written a few years back when my kids were younger.)

Sometimes I get lost in parenting. Hopeless buried under the daily responsibilities, the drudging chores of day to day functioning. All too frequently I have hit the end of the day to discover I never had a moment to brush my teeth or even comb my hair. I will look at the exhausted woman in the mirror with messy hair under her bandanna  and wonder if she will have the strength to keep going.

I have been blessed with having a chosen family to hone my parenting skills on, before I had one of my own.

(Back ground info. I lived on a farm with a woman and her three daughters for 15 years prior to marriage. In that time the three daughters all had children. I am Auntie Pasta to 5 wonderful souls. KSS, LW, JEH, JWJS and JK. They lived off an on at the farm but always close. I was always there for these children. They could count on me to be there and do my best to help them, to guide them to tell them the truth.. I taught them to fish, camp, gun safety, etc. I involved them in my life and we talked and talked about life.)

When the lot of us went on long drives we would talk and I would in part to them all my knowledge about life. The five of us would get into deep discussions and debates. I repeated lectures over and over and over again. Most time I felt it was landing on deaf ears.

Always told them: " you can tell me anything,  but if I think your mom needs to know what you shared with me I will tell her, or we can tell her together."

Oh the things they shared with me. Dazzling even today.

KSS was the closest to me. Born with cerebral palsy and a "you can't stop I come, attitude".  Her 16 year old mama took to working at the doctor office to pay off her debt to him. I worked nights and so did grandma. We took turn giving up sleep to stay up and watch her. I was there before she was born, I was there as she was born, I was there...I'm still there for her.

So many battles and struggles in getting her properly diagnosed. She couldn't walk at 2 1/2 years old. One orthopedic doctor had the gall to say "If you wouldn't carry her so much she would learn to walk."

We new something was wrong. Grandma and I diagnosed her as having cerebral palsy when she was 6 months old. She was almost three before we got her diagnosed and helped. What a wretched day that was. Drove all the way to Shiners hospital in Portland in a rickety old car that kept over heating. Stress levels high. You don't want to find out you child has brain damage...even if you already know. So many tears that day.

We left Shriners dazed and spent. Still unsure if KSS would ever be able to walk, or even what the future held for her.

We stopped by the Enchanted Village on the way home. An unscheduled stop, we all just needed to for a moment escape into fantasy and drown out those words ringing in our ears " brain damage, cerebral palsy, may never walk, return for braces and further treatment."

Her mama was pushing KSS in her stroller and I was walking a few feet behind thinking how much, and deeply I love this little girl. When through the noise of the crowds a mans voice cut through. "she wouldn't be such a fat tub of lard if they let her walk."

I followed his gaze.

He was starring at my child.

To this day that is the closest I have ever came to killing another human being in a blinding rage of anger. His mean hurtful words unleashed a ferocious monster with in me.

Grandma grabbed me as I lunged towards the him with full intent to crack his head open on the pavement. I wanted to put my hands around his neck and scream "YOU SHOULD BE SO THANKFUL THAT YOUR CHILDREN CAN WALK!!!!!" as I slammed his head repeatedly into the pavement.

That pain of that day is deeply, deeply etched in my heart. There was enough pain and destruction without that *&&^%# adding anymore.

She held me until he past. Then she stooped down and got KSS and put her in my arms. I stood there shaking with anger. Finally finding my voice I sobbed, "I will carry her no matter what. Where ever she wants to go I will carry her. I will be her legs so she can go and do anything she wants to do."

I will carry her.

And I did.

She learned to walk when she was three. I never let her use her Cerebral palsy as an excuse to not do things or try things. She hiked the tressloop trail in the redwoods. She hiked the lavabeds and explored caves. If her legs hurt we waited for her. If she needed help I carried her piggy back. Always told my kids,,,our party is only as strong as our weakest link. The learned to watch out and help each other...if they took the time to help each other we could stay out longer doing fun things.

People would stare at her awkward gate and braces on her legs. She hated that. I told her "KSS just tell them, if it bothers you."

She soon began telling staring strangers "Stop staring, I have Zebra-l Palsy! Just ask me about it."

Oh my little cherub with Zebra Palsy, you made my heart sing so  many times. It was an honor to be in your light.

A few years ago, when KSS went to Germany as an exchange student, she called me. She didn't call her mother to share that moment with....she called me.

'P!!" She squealed "Guess where I am!!" Her excitement buzzing through the phone.

"Jail?" I joked.

She laughed and began to describe where she was. The whole of Germany was at her feet as she stood on a castle atop a mountain. The clear blue sky allowed her an breath taking 360 panoramic view of the world. To get there she had to walk up nearly a mile of steep crumbly stone steps. The teacher didn't want her to try the climb, she did it anyways. In her excited description of the climb I began to hear my own words being parroted back to me. She was quoting one of my many life lectures back to me.

and in that heart beat

my job as parent was over. She didn't need me to carry her anymore, she had grown wings and was flying.

So on days when I wake exhausted and already 4 hours behind and the kitchen is a mess and there are 1,000,000 things to do and there are no clean bowls for breakfast and the kids are fighting over the jump rope and I need to pack Corey's lunch and work is IMing me and I feel like the worst mama/wife/employee/person on the planet. I will stop for a fraction of a second and remember that phone call and how my heart lightened...then realize my heart is so heavy right now because I am carrying my family in it. It will get lighter as they grow and sprout their own wings. And it gives me the strength to keep going.

Caribou Woman

She stands on the cliff, late at night

the sea wind swirling her long dark hair like snakes.

She listens to the waves crash and echo in her heart.

She is a barnacle perched on the rock, Unmoving and still.

Waiting, no demanding that life come and happen to her.

Someones words bound her feet, chained her to the rock, sold her into self slavery.

She only knows this reality.

The moonless night is cold and harsh and amplifies her loneliness and gives the madness plenty of room to frolic.

She hears the haunting songs of the sirens and the piercing cries of the gulls.

She is mute and still.

Her moist eyes plead...oh help me,

help me, help me get free.

someone find me...FIND ME...

I am lost.

Her skin weeps red tears, no one hears the silent screams.

She looks up at the starry night and sees Caribou Woman in the mist. "Pull me out" she pleads.

Caribou Woman reaches back, "pull me in"

"I'm going to fall from this cliff and be no more" she cries

Caribou Woman settles next to her and responds, "child...there are many ways to get to the beach without falling."

"I'm afraid" she whispers "that I will fall"

Caribou Woman smiles gently "you are afraid you will fall, so you don't even try...sounds like you have already fallen. Hard to fall when you are already on the ground."

Caribou Woman rises and swirls away with the wind.

She reaches her heavy seaweed arms to the sky..."wait...wait...don't leave me here."

Caribou Woman's hands feel like dew drops on her cold skin. She tugs and pulls but cannot uproot her. "Let go child, you are meant to move and not be stagnate"

She lets go of Caribou Woman's hands and turns her eyes back out to sea. "I am not ready to go yet."

Caribou Woman swirls around her and settles at her feet, "I know. So I will wait with you until you are ready."

The hours pass in silence. Dawn brings the sun to warm the chill and banish the night demons.

A new day, another chance to learn to fly.

She breaths in the morning air.

(C)8-17-2004 PR
dedicated to Fell_out_of_bed

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Summer is over.

Time to get serious! 

Its quiet in the house this morning, just me and Hansolo. Prepping to go to her Kindergarten orientation this morning. That is her above running with a white tiger.

Friday is her IEP meeting. I hope I am rowing with both oars by then!! I am still struggling to adjust to the lower thyroid dose. Not taking ativan now just trying to tread water as I feel like I am drowning.

I'm afraid with my foggy mind I will come across as stupid.

"whats your daughters name?"

Me, "uh, wait I know that, can you make that question a multiple choice?"

We recently had a child come and stay the weekend with us. She was 8 years old and had severe speech issues. This child was not in speech therapy and the parents didn't think it was an issue.

I know an 18 year old boy with the same level of speech issues. I don't get it. The help is out there for FREE. Why didn't someone step in and help these children? Both are locked in to that speech pattern now.

It is not cute to hear grownups talk with toddler pronunciations.

Makes me wanna get up on my soap box and roar!

Makes me glad I fought like a wild cat to get my son the help he needed when he was 3 and didn't listen to everyone who kept telling me "oh hes's fine, he will out grow it"

If a parent tells you they think their child is not right...NEVER brush that off. NEVER NEVER NEVER.

When through that with one of my farm daughters too. We had doctors tell us "she will learn to walk if you stop carrying her"

When she was finally diagnosised with cerebral palsy I wanted to go slap all those people in the face. and tell them "Gee thanks for delaying treatment and making us feel stupid for thinking something was wrong, when it was."

Hmmm...yup yup, if I ran the zoo...things would be so different.

It just makes me so sad I can't help all the children.

So glad I could help my two.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Hooked up

Before we went camping last month I took my son to Wal-mart to pick out a new fishing pole. As we were looking through them I commented "You can never have too many fishing poles."

From the next isle over came a mans voice: "I don't know who is over there, but will you marry me?"


During the camping trip I took the kids to the lake and my son decided to swim first then fish. My daughter threw a tantrum there on the shore. "I WANNA FISH! I WANNA FISH FIRST!!!" She was wielding her pole as if she was going to whip anyone who stopped her.

Knowing she was off her routine/diet and sleep patterns I allowed her a moment to calm down before I addressed her.

In that silence I heard a father lean over to his two young sons and comment.

"Boys, THAT is the type of woman you want to marry."

Too funny. 

All that reminded me of a trip to the lake years and years ago, Pre-marriage and kids, I was skinny then, hair down to my butt. I was in my string bikini and walking my friends dalmatian down to the camp store. The menfolk along the way glanced at me them ignored me.

At the store I grabbed beer for my friend and the farm boys met me and asked me to take their fishing poles back to the campsite so they could go swimming.

So on the return trip, I was skinny bikini clad woman with long hair, juggling a 12 pack of beer, tackle box and two poles and a dog.

This time the menfolk along the way now starred with big smiles on their faces, nodding there heads in approval. Somehow that configuration made me a heck of a lot more attractive!

Wish I had known this secret when I was younger.I will make sure my daughter has a good sized tackle box. for when she is ready to date in her twenties. Plus I will pass on that dad's wisdom to my son. Look for someone who is passionate about the things you are too.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Medicated again.

off balanced a little since they cut down my thyroid medicine dose. I am sooo sensitive to meds that I was bracing for this. I am already noticing the spacey thyroid brain fog.

To deal with the mental health stuff, I am just going to take Ativan every morning. I am NOT playing hypo-hell games with my thyroid. Nope. Nada. Not gunna happen this time.

I hope with in a week or two my body will adjust to the lesser amt of thyroid hormones.

Did you know that once upon a time I had time to draw?

It been years.

I used to have a sketch pad with me 24/7. Drew all the time. I think in the last 12 years I have drawn 3 children's books, and a handful of other drawings.

Why did that disappear from my life? Why did becoming a wife/mother change that? Besides the lack of time?

Arthritis has set in my hands now. The last book I illustrated was painful.....but so much fun.

I wonder what stops me from drawing.

With my writing, I cannot stop. I can go only so long before the muse is kicking up dirt and demanding I write. I write or go mad, there is no choice.

No so with the drawing though. That I can turn off and on.

I am feeling ....medicated....with this Ativan dose. Calm and quiet.

That should keep you in line and out of trouble for a while, eh?

Aaaah, nope. I still am going post a doodle of my butt, and a cat butt.