Posted in Family, Life

Sweet and innocent

I always come back to this picture of Mom and it is my favorite one. It stirs up mixed emotions, as my fingers glide across the picture in a gentle caress. Sweet, innocent and not a clue of how strong she would have to be, not knowing what life was holding in store for her. I can’t help but wish to waive my hand and make all the bad go away, and to give this sweet, innocent child a better life.

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Posted in Family, Life

Not all tales have a happy ending

It started to snow again Sunday night, and a bitter cold storm swept over the Sierra crest. I live about 25 minutes in a suburb of Reno which is a little higher in elevation, so when it rains in town, it’s not unusual to snow at my house. And so it was that night, and the snow fell at my house before it began to snow and stick in town.

I was closing the store on Sunday night and the flakes were getting thicker and thicker. I opted to stay in town, knowing that I had my rescheduled appointment with the tooth fairy at 8AM on Monday morning. I stopped at Panda Express for take out that night, and made it back to safety in the nick of time. The roads were patchy in spots and were becoming slick and iced. I ate half of my dinner and decided to save the rest for lunch the next day. All there was left to do is finish off the meal with a fortune cookie. I cracked the crispy cookie in half, ready to claim my fortune, but to my surprise it was empty. I turned the two pieces to view them from all angles as if the fortune miraculously had been wrapped in some weird fashion not visible at first. Instead there was nothing, no matter which way I turned the cookie, and no message was to be told. I couldn’t help but smile thinking back to my High Priestess Tarot message and what I learned through her appearance.

“Sometimes you have to fly blind. You will only be able to embrace the truths through the experience without knowledge of what is to come”.

Apparently my fortune cookie from “Panda” had joined in and remained silent as well. There would be no help here either.

Monday morning came and I was sitting in the dentist chair waiting for the numbness of the shots to take full effect. And boy did they ever. It would take until 2PM until I could finally talk normal again without lisp and slurring words and attempt to eat. You might think “What a way to start off the week” but I didn’t feel a thing and I don’t mind going to the dentist anymore. There is a killer staff and many friendships have been formed since I started to go to this practice. Maybe otherwise I would have frowned a bit too, having the drill in my mouth on a Monday morning at 8AM. We chatted a bit and the tooth fairy and her dental assistant Elvia know the reason for my going to Germany. They have done their best to make time for me and accommodate my tight schedule. Did I say yet that I haven’t packed yet and that I’m freaking out a bit? I have only a few days left to get all chores done…yikes. I’m exhausted.

After everything was said and done, Elvia hugged me while telling me that I’m going to be there for Mom during a time when she needs me the most. She held me tight, while I could hear her soft voice telling me that I was a good daughter. It caught me off surprise to hear these words, words I had longed for so many years to hear from Mom, words now spoken from a relative stranger. I could feel the tears well up and even now writing about it, I still get emotional about this tender moment that meant so much. I had to walk away quickly, as I was losing my composure and I hated that I couldn’t give my feelings free reign and had to suppress the emotions yet again. It was during those moments that I realized how raw and painful my struggle with Mom really is and there may never be an end to it. Sometimes nobody wins and not all tales have a happy ending.

Picture taken from google

Posted in Family, Life

Love wins in the end

It was Valentine’s Day yesterday and I spent it alone. The day was filled with chores and preparations for Germany. I tried to call Mom for what must have been at least 30 minutes….no answer, and she is back to locking herself into her apartment. She got into a fight with her nurse that tends to her feet and I hope that by now she has forgotten about it and that she will open the door again and let her back in to care for her. One of my highlights was face timing with my cousin and nieces and it will be nice to spend time together once I get there. I mentioned potentially getting a pass to go swimming and I already got one little fan on board to accompany me when the time comes. 😉 I think it could help with the RA, solve the hot water, shower issue, but other things such as transportation etc, will have to fall into place first.

Today also brought frustrating moments such as fighting with the insurance for two hours straight. My goal was to set up an auto pay for my health benefits premiums since I won’t be here and have no paycheck for it to be automatically deducted as usual. After two hours and being transferred four times, I’m back to square one and nothing got resolved. Further I cancelled all my doctors appointments, besides the tooth fairy which I could reschedule for next Monday 8AM. Too early for me, but the only choice I had. I backed and synced music (important), freed up memory space in case I take pictures with the Canon, researched amazon for last minute things I need such as an converter plug and a guitar tuner. I will miss my ukulele, but I have an acoustic guitar in Germany, and maybe I can finally learn how to play it. And then there was the income tax return fiasco and trying to get everything done, which I didn’t and which I will have to revisit. Today was a mixed bag with successes and drawbacks, but overall I feel that I did accomplish some things.

The emotions ran a bit rampant throughout the day, perhaps because of Valentine’s Day and the day progressed not exactly how I would have wanted to spend it. So while there a strong moments powering through the tasks, there are also vulnerable ones which hurt a lot right now. I’m hanging in there the best I can, and my outlook and point of view changes with every day it seems. Even with Mom, have I gone through all kinds of emotions it seems. I have been frustrated with her stubbornness and sometimes selfish views, I even got downright angry at her and couldn’t understand. In the end the harsh feelings always pass, and it is always love that wins. Love hurts right now and sometimes it feels better to be angry and suppress the feelings, but today it all vanished. The anger and frustration left and I was confronted with the ugliness this has caused. I felt sad, perhaps even ashamed of myself for feeling this way, for getting angry at her. I know that I should have every right to be upset at her and yet what would it ever solve. If she can’t be the adult about this, I will have to be. In Germany we have a saying that the wiser person gives in. In other the wiser person doesn’t have to prove a point, they know it and so does the other person. Words become silent in a silent understanding and it’s enough.

Before coming to this conclusion, I experienced moments of numbness and acceptance for how things are. For that we will never have the relationship that I chased and hoped to have with her for all my life. There are times I’m coming to terms with it and I’m accepting this as my new truths, and then there are other times when it feels like it’s ripping my heart out. I feel like a rag doll at times, never knowing when a moment of sadness and pain strikes next. I don’t like it, but what I do know, is that I shouldn’t overthink things. To let them develop, as perhaps some things may never come to fruition. Maybe she will completely change, and although it’s highly unlikely, one should never give up hope. In this case it’s a vicious cycle. I feel the outcome so clearly as if I already seen it through a crystal ball. I know what is going to happen and I’m summoning the reserves and the strengths tarot already has forecasted in a prior reading. I need to dig deep and I will be ok. Nothing worthwhile is ever easy and the things that change us and make us better people. are most always painful experiences. This one is without a doubt my biggest challenge yet and I better get my butterfly wings when it’s all said and done. It’s up to me, and I have to remember that horns never looked good on me. Sorry, humor is something I have always used to pull myself out of the funk, and even here, as serious as this is, I still look for a way to make light of the situation. You have to, and it’s essential for your sanity I think.

I came across a new vinyl tablecloth for Mom. It’s full of hearts and a typical Valentine’s design. I thought it was perfect for her, for I would surely tell her that going forward there would be nothing but love in this house and this tablecloth would be a reminder to seize all the fights and resistance. As if it would magically make her surrender and allow me to help her. As if all of a sudden I would be accepted as her daughter and I would be worth something to her. As if she could love me and be proud of me. What a nonsense, but for a moment it was a beautiful thought and I rode that train for as long as I could. I will still take the tablecloth with me, but there is no-more telling of anything, no statement, no saying how things will be, nor will there be any expectations. If she likes it and it can bring her joy, then it’s a win for me and it shall make me happy. We will see in two short weeks. Until then…Happy Valentine’s Day Mom. You’re loved…♥️

Posted in Family, Life

Finding the courage to speak

I never felt scared to speak to anyone. I am not a fighter and one who enjoys to argue, but I have always found a way to address what needs to be addressed. I have always stood up for what was right, even if consequences were attached in doing so. I stood for justice, for solving problems and clearing the air, instead of going to bed angry. This is not so the case with Mom, and Mom to me, has always been that strong, independent woman who hides the emotions behind a tough facade. Even making her smile occasionally is something that sneaks over her face, it’s almost unwanted, quick and foreign as if it was coaxed out of her against her will, something that is not meant to be detected. I usually call her on it in a joking way and in the hopes that she will get used to it and deem it ok. I’ve waited all my life for the curtain to fall and for her to allow me into her world, to feel comfortable and safe. It never happened and no adult conversation ever took place. No Mother-Daughter talk has ever crossed our lips and I don’t even know how to talk to her. She doesn’t see me as an adult or as a grown woman and I will always be that ten year old child I was at the time of my fathers death, who doesn’t know a thing.

What lies ahead are many tough decisions that will require a lot of conversations. It almost seems impossible to me right now, and I can’t imagine her changing her ways in any form or style. I have tried talking to her over decades by now, and she doesn’t consider any other opinion than her own. She never had to, and she is used to being on her own and doing what she wants. The time is not in her favor anymore and she needs help. In order to receive help she needs to listen sometimes, maybe be open to suggestions and consider a different view. I’m not sure if she can and I already know it’s not going to happen, although I want to remain positive. My intuition says otherwise, and I know my gut feeling is right. I’m not going to change her anymore and I will have to be firm, removing most choices and just action things if she likes it or not. I know it won’t earn me any love or brownie points, but I won’t be able to just sit back and watch her demise either. If that what she expects, than I don’t need to be in Germany.

I have tried letters before, pleating my case while leaving my heart on my sleeve. I opened up and shared things with her, it only came back to haunt me later on as she would use this information against me. To the letters itself, an answer never came, nor did an acknowledgement. Nothing, even after I asked if she received the letters, she simply said yes and that was the end. There was no input and nothing to say at all on her part. If I persisted to talk, and my opinions were different than hers, she couldn’t accept it and it resulted in more resentment towards me. All talking would cease and I was non existent until she finally would declare it time to lower the guards and let me back in to tip toe around her in an effort to not offend her again.

I want to go home and try to help her, to respect her wishes and treat her as a responsible adult, but I don’t have the time for those kind of games and acting as if you are some spoiled brat. How old are we to behave like this? I’m not sure how I will get her passed it, but she is not making good decisions right now. I understand that she wants to stay at home, in her house, but she needs 24 hours care and even when I get home, I don’t feel like I can provide the care she needs in order to be well. Somehow I know that it will come down to one question, and that is whether she wants to live or not. It will be the last nail in the coffin and she might as well throw me out or disown me again. It’s always a last attempt, a last resort and threat that sadly has no leverage over me, other than to break my heart. I just can’t see that being right and having it all her way is more important than a relationship with her daughter. I don’t understand how this could ever mean more and how it is even possible. I challenge what feeling there are, if she has any and at 50+ years, I can’t help but wonder if I was a wanted child. Mom says it’s my turn to take care of her since she cared for me as a child. Isn’t that what you do when you want and have children? I felt like an accident over the past few weeks, someone who wasn’t wanted and perhaps it would justify the resentment. Mom even said before that she wouldn’t have had a child had she known that my Dad would pass so soon. It hurt then and it still hurts now. It makes me feel like I was a mistake, but it also motivates me to prove that I wasn’t, that I achieved much in my life, that there is purpose and that there are people who do care for me through beautiful friendships and love. Even if she will never admit to it, I will always know that she knows and that will have to do. I know what lies ahead will require many tough talks and I don’t have a good feeling about any of them.

The other day I caught myself talking in the car, aloud, and I have done it several times by now. Mom has been on my mind non stop in my mental preparations of going to Germany. Easily a thought of what surely is to come pops into my head out of the blue. What follows is a dialogue, spoken out words on my part, words directed at Mom as if I’m in conversation with her. I’m pleading and defending my character. I frantically try to justify and explain myself, but I never win. There will be no winners in this case and all always ends with her getting upset, telling me to pack up and leave again while nothing is ever resolved. The past replays in my mind as I drive along the highway, begging Mom to understand my side. I hold on to the hopes that some word can shine through to let her know that I’m not the enemy. I only mean well for her and I want to help. Why can’t she allow me? She might realize that it would bring me satisfaction, perhaps some closure if I could help. I’m not granted the opportunity and instead her focus is on the action of me who left her behind and alone. I shall suffer for it alone in the darkness of a nights cold. This is so powerful that it has robbed her of any loving feelings she might have had for me at one point. It’s stronger than me and it requires her want to change this. I don’t think that I can ever turn this around or make it undone, but I will have to find the courage to speak and respect her wishes thereof. Maybe none of this is true, but how would I ever know if all remains unspoken.

Posted in Family, My story

Taking care of myself

I’m off today and I want to write, but the words don’t come and there is a restlessness inside of me. I have anxiety and can’t quiet the storm inside of me. I feel like sleeping it off while the winds howl outside and snow is on the way. I’m exhausted.

Mom is home from the hospital and I talked to my cousin today. The one comforting thing to learn was that a nurse has to come by every day to check on her feet. I tried to call, Mom didn’t answer and I’m preparing for the worst. Not just about her future but also about the visit from my girlfriend while Mom was still in the hospital. Angie tried to offer a different view by talking to Mom, trying to help find a solution. Of course Mom didn’t allow for such and I’m sure she will have something to say about it to me for sending such a visitor. I’m sure just like everything else, it will be my fault and a proper scolding will follow. I was almost relieved she didn’t answer the phone and what a sad thing it is to be 50+ years old, with the fear of talking to Mom. The times I’ve tried were never good and I have little hope this time will be different.

I’m tired about talking about Mom. It is what it is and I feel I have talked about it enough for one day. It leaves me exhausted, with a headache and with my heart in a vice. I will try my best to distract myself and hope the words to write will return later on today to catch up.

Picture taken from Pinterest and one of the rare occasions of not presenting my own photography.

Posted in Family, My story

Uneasiness

It took awhile to fall asleep last night. I spent the day doing pretty much what I wanted. I hardly did any chores and spent a lot of time writing, commenting and following up on your blogs. It was nice to catch up and you know that my schedule at work has limited the time for such in recent weeks. There was plenty I could have been doing, but I gave myself the gift of time. I called a friend to chat and even took a little time to work on a new puzzle. I used to love doing puzzles as a child and I remember spending hours with my Dad, looking for hard to find pieces and seeing our work come together in a beautiful mountain scene. My Mom still has one so said puzzle hanging on the wall, mounted on plywood and the memories flood in every time I see it. I know that it is the memories and the feel that I’m holding on to, it’s the reason as to why I picked up a puzzle the other day. I wanted to feel the peace within and do something good for myself. I feed that muse quite often these days and believe it has helped me with the fight against the RA and keeping it at bay for right now. I think balance is the key and plays a huge part.

It was a peaceful day yesterday and it feels as if my time off has reached new levels. I admit that I have always enjoyed my days off, who doesn’t, but now they feel like gold to me, something so precious, with it being my biggest treasure. Those days are the means to focus on what truly matters, what is good for my soul and not what I have to do. Last night in bed, the uneasiness crept in and although I laid still, I could feel and hear the inner workings of restlessness within my body. It feels as if my heart is in a vice and anxiety is coming through the door to pay another unwanted visit. I never feel it any time else, only when my free time is coming to an end. When the daily rut of a ruthless retail life is starting over and I know that “I have to” until my next day off.

I woke up gasping for air again as if I had a bad dream. If I did, I don’t remember but it was momentarily and I felt pretty good. I work the late shift today and tomorrow, with tomorrow being inventory, so I was happy to wake up early to have time to write. I know the time to read and write will be cut short again while working and it’s a constant battle. My friend yesterday thought I write a lot while we talked on the phone. There are only so many hours in the day and it’s hard at times to cram everything in, especially if you work full time, but I do believe you will always find a way to do what you love if you make it a priority and if it means something to you. Everything else would on,y be an excuse.

But back to my topic and almost four weeks later after Mom’s admittance into the hospital, the bad news finally came. I checked the message after making coffee and the good mood immediately fled my body. What remained was another mixed bag of varied emotions that left me wondering what in the world it is that I could help with. I’ve been quiet about Mom and seldom even inquired about her with my cousin. Maybe it was due to fear, not being ready to face the music, amidst the preparations for more bad news. I knew it would come, it always does and it’s just a matter of time. Soon or later the shadows would resurface and the little bought freedom and time of relatively no worries, knowing she was in good hands and taken care off would end. I believe it’s another reason for the uneasiness that comes up within, knowing that Mom is reaching the end of her life. I recently wrote about intuition, being an empath and being able to pick up on the energies of others. I struggle with Mom’s and she is usually surrounded by a thick shroud that doesn’t allow me to pick up any vibes. Maybe I felt her last night and her armor is weakening.

Mom has been laying in bed for four week’s and with the help of a catheter even bathroom trips have been eliminated. She looks good and is doing great thanks to food specifically for her to meet her diabetic needs. Thanks to a lot of fluids, she has blossomed, and I was told that it’s visually noticeable that the care she has been given is doing wonders for her. And here comes the problem. She hasn’t walked for four weeks and while she looks great, she is weak and needs to relearn and regain her strengths. How can someone not grasp that? She is worse than the most unreasonable child and you would think it is basic common sense to know that she needs to rehabilitate. She lost her big toe, should go for two weeks of rehabilitation to help her get mobilized again and she refuses, thinking that she doesn’t need it. WTH #&@5#/#/((#*-)’@$@&#=#*#(=-*

She is the most stubborn person I have ever known and this is where my frustration comes in, where I feel helpless. This is where I get angry that she is putting me into a situation of feeling helpless. It would be one thing if she said that she needs help and is willing to accept such, including listening to what others, especially me have to say. I get it that it is her life but she is no longer capable to take care of herself and while I would always respect her wishes, refusing help because of stubbornness is not something I can tolerate. It’s another thing to be stubborn and let everybody else watch the demise with their hands tied, unable to make a difference. That is what gets my blood boiling and I know it doesn’t matter if I’m here or there, I AM the LAST person she listens to. What impact would I have? Yet I know the right thing to do is to be there and this morning is spent with looking for airfares while trying to figure everything else out about how life here would continue without me. It’s not exactly that I can tell my responsibilities that I’m going to take a holiday and to come back later. I know it’s just the frustration talking right now and I need to breath. I had four weeks to prepare for this moment and thinking and hoping anything else positive could have happened during that time frame was nothing more than ignorant bliss. I need to breathe…I already know what needs to be done. I always knew, I just need to stop resisting and realize that not all tales have a fairytale endings. I still believe in mine and it’s not that I’m giving up on it. I know I have to cross through the storm before I can reach my rainbow. The longer wait, the longer it will take to get there and you already know my feelings on time. I better get to it and my conscience will not rest otherwise.

Posted in Family, Spirit animals

Deer spirit animal

I have noticed an abundance of deer lately and it seems they have appeared anywhere. Not just one or two which occasionally happens as well, but I’m talking about herds of deer and groupings everywhere. Yes the area around me is prone to deer, but it’s the sheer number of sightings that has gotten my attention. What is even more unusual, is that there have been quite a few buck sightings which has always been extremely rare. I used to see one every blue moon, but now, for some reason they are not all that uncommon anymore.

I went to revisit the spiritual meaning of of this animal to see if there was another message to be learned. It appears to go hand in hand with some of the advice you have given me and it is said that when a deer leaps into your life, it is time to be compassionate towards others and yourself. Deer belongs to those who shine the light so others may find their way home. Deer spirit is invoked to create peace in your sphere.

It all makes sense now…

I have been trying to do my best, to take care of myself and to stay calm, but in the end I know that life is filled with pieces of turmoil and my inner peace hangs in the balance. Deer spirit is a reminder for peace and to shine the light to those who feel they are lost in the dark. Mom lost her big toe on the other foot, for the most part she is doing well. The nurses are always surprised how quickly her legs go bad and reach a critical point, one that is close to amputation, and how quickly they recover in the hospital with proper care and regulated food and medicine. It is clear that this cycle will repeat over and over and that Mom cant handle this alone anymore. She might think she is in control and does everything as directed, but clearly she isn’t. Just try to tell her different, a mule is less stubborn than she is. I’m still amazed that our birthdays are only a day apart but how different we are in personalities. Characteristics of sharing the same astrology sign is a total miss in our case.

She is facing rehabilitation and losing a big toe will offset her balance in a great way. She could tip over, feel unstable and she better take that darn walker for whatever time necessary. That’s all I can say and think of right now. No matter how deep I dig there is no compassion for shenanigans and my compassion for her involves what’s best for her and her getting well, not foolish pride, stubbornness or thinking that she doesn’t need a walker. She fell, what else needs to happen? I truly hope that she has changed her mind and gained some insight and wisdom with this experience.

At twilight on the way home…

Posted in Family

A little love from Home

A little love from Home arrived in the form of a tin box package filled with the best Gummi’s in the world. Haribo makes my favorite gummy bears and there is just nothing like it. My nieces in Germany know what I love and it’s always such a nice to surprise to receive a little treasure filled with love from Home. One of my nieces taped a little note on the candy she had selected for me that read, “For your happiness”. ❤️ It truly makes you happy 😉

But that was not all and a super cute picture magnet will forever memorize a special moment with friends and family while I was Home. And a all natural hand lotion for my battered hands like my cousin put it, helped pamper me into bliss with a big smile. Sending much love across the miles and a deep feeling of gratitude and thanks.

Have you had Haribo before, do you have a favorite?

Posted in Family, Health, Inspiration

Heaven can wait

Mom’s surgery went well and I learned that she appeared to be in good spirits. Thank you so much for all your prayers and for keeping us in your thoughts. I’m truly touched by your care and the messages, along with the kind comments that I have received and your understanding for my elusive nature as of lately. Much has happened and I feel as if my year ended up teetering on some scary moments. I am ok and I know I have called on you a lot lately. Change is happening fast in my little corner and 2018 will be full of it. I remain thankful for your support through those times and always. You truly are the best group of people I have encountered.

I don’t have more details about Mom. I have no idea which toe she lost, what is next or how long she has to stay. I’m not sure if there is still talk or danger about her losing her leg, but for now I remain hopeful. I have not been able to talk to her and hope this will change soon. I don’t see it unless she is coming home or decides to take a phone while in the hospital, but for now I hope to hear her voice soon. It has been hard not to wish her a merry Christmas or a happy new year. It’s been a first and sometimes you can’t have it all, they say. At least she is here and I feel her close in my heart. In a way it is the very thing that makes my heart heavy and forces tears down my face. I’m too far away and today the pressure of being scared is leaving my body in the form of such release.

Today the distance dissipates as I hold her hand to win this fight that we soon or later have to lose. Today I’m hoping for later….

Posted in Family, Health

A prayer across the miles

On this last day of the year, all of my thoughts are traveling home, back to Germany, back to Mom. Mom has surgery today and she is losing another toe. And while everything could be a lot worse, for the moment at least it isn’t, although things could change tomorrow. For the moment I’m holding on to the silver lining that she is keeping her leg, while I silently pray that she is recognizing the seriousness of her conditions and that it will truly end with just a toe.