Bloom Where You Are Planted

runawaynow.jpgOkay it has been way to long since I have been away from my keyboard and my blog.  My blog feels like an old friend…You know, the one you outgrew but yet you glance over to them on the playground and your heart does that twitch thing….but yet you know you have outgrown them?  Yes, I have outgrown my blog.

OR??  Have I just been practicing avoidance behavior?  Our lives go on, no matter what happens until its over.  There will be laundry to do, and taxes to pay, and jobs to do.  Life still unfolds around us.  And that’s the circle of life.

Am I wiser?  Ah maybe just different.

Okay so what have I been up to if I am not writing or dreaming about something to do with writing?  Well I took a big leap of faith, and I went back to work.  Which it turns out, is exactly where I should be!  Where I am ready to be.  Where I am.

There ya have it.  Bloom where you are planted.  This bulb, was slow to come out of the ground however.  But I have.  and I am okay.  I feel like the little bear that hibernated all winter long, and stuck her little head out and said “is it safe out here?”  “Is it spring yet?”.

Its spring!  The sun is out.  The weather is warm.  I remember what I do for a living.  I love what I do for a living, its fun for the most part.  It pays well, and the people are intelligent and have plans and basically are busy living.

but now I am back to work, I have no time to do all my stuff. Yes all my stuff that is so important.  Now I have to wash the dog, mow the yard, weed the flowers and all in my spare time.  Gees, no wonder people hire people to do stuff.

Time to think is few and far between.  but maybe that’s good.  It is what it is.

Life is good.  I am happy.  I took the fork in the road and I am headed that way…..hope to see you there!

 

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The Spirit of Your Garden

tiresGardening is definitely healing.  To touch the earth with your hands, to build something from nothing, to restore the earth and promote growth gives the human spirit a much needed immune system boost!  Its been proven, that if we find something that motivates our soul, we find that inner peace that brings with it acceptance and the wisdom of peace.

Isn’t that what we are all searching for after cancer?  Some space, some place where there is an escape from the everyday repeat of the fact that we have been ill, are ill, or may get ill again?  So I have decided that I will embark upon this journey to fix up my little house and large yard.

When I started out, two years ago, the yard was quite wild.  For a big corner lot, it was mostly covered in ivy, which in itself is quite nice to look at and doesn’t require much maintenance or updating.  However, after awhile it gets boring.  So I decided to add a few items, and trim a few items.  Enter the workers that I hired to trim the bushes.  Before embarking upon such an experiment, make sure the person you are speaking to understands exactly what you want done.  Unfortunately, I did not communicate correctly what it is was that I wanted done to the three heather plants in the front yard.    I assumed he knew what a trim meant.

Let me look up trim ….recortar is the word in Spanish that I used.  It can be trim, cut back, lop off, remove ….oops.   Okay, so he cut back and dug out the roots of my heather bushes and removed them.  Now I was left with a big hole in the middle of an entire side yard of ivy.  That was a year ago.  The hole is still empty.

It was an interesting removal.  Heather is out of my life.  In more ways than one, if any of you know me.  Quickly, unexplained, surprised, empty and a total degree of other adjectives.  I find it an interesting thing that has happened, which I won’t go into here.  But my search to replace the Heather bushes go on.    Isn’t life interesting sometimes?  Its like mother nature just laughs at you.  Hmmmmm

So what to put in the empty spot in my life. Whoops…yard not life!  Interesting how God always replaces something when something is lost.  However, back to my ivy spot, I have decided to recycle some old tires.  Everything about my house is recycled.  I don’t know why I took on this effort at this time in my life.  It is sort of like my life, it’s being recycled.  I am taking the old body and trying to make something out of what is left over.

The garden has an empty spot.  Many neighbors comment.  They wonder what is coming next, or if anything is coming at all.  Since I am the first person in the community that you see as you enter, I do feel a great responsibility to replace it with something beautiful.  We are now in month number nine of me thinking about what should replace the heather.

Its all so applicable in my life.  If you only knew the story of the missing Heather.

What will I replace the missing Heather with?  Old tires?  Painted old tires?  Perhaps.  Flowers, perhaps, but they are fleeting….they would die down in the winter and look again, like an empty spot.  Sort of like relationships, don’t you think?  Seasonal.

I like the tire idea.  So I got some used tires from a friends daughter-in-law.  They are not to big, but this morning I will spray paint them.  Sounds fun?  Me and my paint!  For those of you that don’t know me, I like to paint everything.  I do it all the time.  Its part of me.  Painting has become what I do since I had cancer.  I clean things up.  I make them new.

Its who I am.  Who are you?  Do you know who you are?  Am I painting over the layers of my life and moving on?  Try it sometime, it’s wonderful.

Next topic, Have you ever given away any ‘eggs’ or ‘sperm’?  Did you wonder where they went?  Have they ever showed up at your door?  Do any of you think this might be an interesting topic?  Let me know!

Have a great day.  I am off to paint my tires!   (thank you to whomever took the picture!!)

Bonnie

 

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Life is Good! Really….Life is Good. Thank you!

Happiness-Hands1Just a thought this morning, a thought of pure gratefulness.

Life is good.  Really good.   I am looking forward to farmers markets this summer!  I am enjoying all the pink blossoms on the trees.  I walked the UW campus and it was so beautiful this week!

and it rained and rained, but it smelled so good and it sounded wonderful on my new metal roof. I love the sound of the rain.  I love to hear the birds chirping in the morning after the rain, as I am waking up.

Life is good.  Truly good.

 

Bonnie

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Cancer Feelings – Anger and Happiness – The relationship

Gees I have to apologize to all my readers. I haven’t been on in awhile and I left you with that last post that was about being angry.

The thing about feelings are if you wait long enough they change!  And it doesn’t take long.  Sure I get angry but then I take action.  I think that is the key in our life, that an emotion will prompt you on to take action.  A lot of people are afraid of anger.  I think I use to be really afraid of anger.  I was afraid to exhibit it, I was afraid to see it in others, and I was paralyzed after I exhibited it.  But as in anything, by ignoring it, makes the problem worse!  I am no longer afraid of it!  Bring it on, and let it move on!

And there is nothing wrong with getting angry.  But put it to good use.  Take some action.  We can only be responsible for our own actions and in actions.  Sometimes the best thing we can do is to reach out to others to talk through these feelings.

My cancer support group has proved invaluable.  Because partaking in group activities reminds us that we are not alone in this journey; that other people have traveled it and others will follow us through it.  So no matter whether you are a cancer survivor, a survivor of domestic violence or you have been in a bad car accident (we all have something) spending time with others is very important!!

I am indebted to my fellow survivors.  They carved a path, and left knowledge behind.  Whether it was an early stage survivor or my friend Ann Silberman who is Stage 4 Metster; they all leave a message.  The key is we all help each other.  Ann’s site, Breast Cancer? But Doctor I Hate Pink, has been an inspiration to me, given me links to information I needed to understand my situation.  It just goes to show, and remind us, that we all need each other!  Now we might not need each other all the time, but that is what life is about – it’s like chapters in a book.  I thank all those that helped me in this chapter in my life.

Now to my being angry.  I am also so very happy!  Yes, I am.   I work through my grief, because a lot of what this about is grief and loss.  And when I do that, I feel peace clear down in my soul.  I feel odd about talking about being happy now.  It seems weird to say that cancer was a gift.  But it was :)    It would be nice if we didn’t have to learn life’s lessons this way but its okay too.  I recently heard Matthew McConaughy speak about the end of life,  I would like to quote his article here, and share it with you because he had some interesting things to say about what a man regrets at the end of his life.  Enjoy:

Learn that your days are numbered Remember to spend your time doing the things that matter. Patterns/two regrets people have 2) I wish I hadn’t worked so hard This came from every single man that was dying. they pissed their children’s youth and female partners time. Number one: I wish I had the courage to live a life true to myself not the life others expected of me. Culture expected of me. How many dreams have gone unfilled due to choices they had made. Health brings a freedom that very few realize until they no longer have it.

Give us the wisdom. Its biblical…Live as if your days are numbered because you will gain wisdom..

———- There is an elephant in the room.

 

Matthew McConaughy and the monster at the end of the story…”we all had this dream, we were gonna do this and we were with this person and then the room was dark sometimes and maybe there was something under the bed, and then in our lives there was the monster…in the end.”

He has an interesting way of putting it.  Meanwhile, it’s Saturday, I am feeling great!  It must be time to paint something again :)     Go forth and live!!   Thank you all for reading!!

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An evolving Mosaic of Anger and Love

Good evening:  Following my rants of anger are some great poems by James Kavanaugh that give me great comfort. 

Of the five stages of grief, anger is the one I haven’t really felt at a gut wrenching feeling until today.

I am angry at people, the world, at God, at the imperfections of Science, at Art, at everything.  I am angry at my own body.  I am angry at myself for wearing it out.   I am angry at how my body looks.

I am angry at not knowing what to do next.  I angry at people telling me what to do.  I am angry that this happened to me.

I am so angry.

$#)(*)(* CANCER!

and I am sick of people telling me to be grateful, to not be angry, to get my life together, to forget it and move on, and to have to make a new life at this stage.

I miss Barry.  I wonder what he would say to me?  “Welcome to my world.” “I didn’t want to leave either”.

The good thing about emotions are, that I know this feeling will pass too.  Maybe I will just go to bed and wake up ‘different’.  I am angry so many friends have had to go through this also.

Oh can I reach into my soul and find something to feel good about?  I think I need a vacation.  Is that in the cards? I doubt it.   The one thing you can count on about cancer is that it uses up all your money and resources.

Okay maybe tomorrow will be better.  Look for the rainbow, right?  Yea, look for the rainbow.  Maybe I will start with the moon eclipse at midnight.  a friend of mine said that you should only cut your hair when there is a full moon.  I might try that myself.  I wonder what I would look like.  Hmmmmmmmm probably not good.  Should let the hairdresser do it.

Running away…keeps crossing my mind.

There are Men Too Gentle to Live Among Wolves

“There are men too gentle to live among wolves
Who prey upon them with IBM eyes
And sell their hearts and guts for martinis at noon.
There are men to gentle for a savage world
Who dream instead of snow and children and Halloween
And wonder if the leaves will change their color soon.

There are men to gentle to live among wolves
Who anoint them for burial with greedy claws
And murder them for a merchant’s profit and gain.
There are men to gentle for a corporate world
Who dream instead of Easter eggs and fragrant grass
And pause to hear the distant whistle of a train.

There are men to gentle too live amount wolves
Who devour them with appetite and search
For other men to prey upon and suck their childhood dry.
There are men to gentle for an accountant’s world
Who dream instead of Easter eggs and fragrant grass
And search for beauty in the mystery of the sky.There are men too gentle to live among wolves

There are men to gentle too live among wolves
Who toss them like a lost and wounded dove
Such gentle men are lonely in a merchant’s world
Unless they have a gentle one to love.”

James Kavanaugh

UNAFRAID TO BE FREE

“Finally unafraid to be free,
Ready to surrender all the illusions of
recognition and external securities,
Living off the sky and earth like soaring
eagles and braying burros,
Trusting in a Power even beyond Dow Jones
and hoarded retirement.
Finally ready to live like the noble animal that I am-
Without masters or servants, with dignity dependent on no one,
Content to know that I am God’s child, and
only good has been prepared for me.
When I am not afraid to release all that my life
and culture taught me to prize.
To abandon fears once and for all, to discard the
anxieties of a lifetime like a suit that no longer fits,
To be afraid of no one, beholden to no one,
dependent on no one
Save the few who know and love me as I am,
and the God Who alone gives meaning and joy
to the madness of my life.”

James Kavanaugh

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Spring Is Here At Last

Hey Everyone!

I woke up this morning, and I heard the birds chattering and singing outside.  What a wonderful sound that is to hear!  It’s Spring.  We made it.  Do you feel good in the spring? It’s my favorite time of the year in the Pacific Northwest.  It’s also the time for allergies from all the trees and grasses that are permeating the air!

Allergies remind me of just one more medication I need.  How many types of medication can one person take.  I took a strong look at my kitchen yesterday.  And here is what I see…bottles and bottles of medicine, vitamins, gummy bear vitamins, calcium chews and aspirin.  The other side of the box has a tall bottle of Tylenol adjacent to one bottle of Ibuprofen.  Sigh……is your house full of medications?

Its just one thing after another.  Now my diabetes is acting up.  I currently take three types of medication for that, because I have been resisting insulin.  Now I am beginning to rethink that option.  If I could give up two of the pills, maybe I would try it. I guess though, there is no trying it cause you just get on it and do that from then on.

This is all depressing.  Honestly, I have eaten right and exercised the last three months.  Granted now I have a cold, and my blood sugar has been high.  but then it has been high ever since all this started 18 months ago.  Tamoxifen made it the worst.  Even though I quit that, the sugar remains high.  Why does all this stuff have to go wrong at once?  I guess I should be making recommendations here for what to do..because I have to remember my goal:  to help other people on their journey.  To maybe pave a path, that will make somebody else’s life a little easier.  Remember the goal.  Stay focused.

So what can I do?  Diabetes and cancer are kind of linked.  But recently I read articles that said cancer really is not impacted by sugar.

http://www.dana-farber.org/Health-Library/Sugar-and-Cancer-Cells.aspx

This is a good article on sugar and cancer.  Read it please. It has some good information.  Fresh fruits and vegetables are very good for cancer patients.  The article references 12 grams of sugar found in a small orange and 10 grams found in a donut.  However the donut does not consider good nutrients like the orange.  The orange also has Fiber in it!  So by all means consume these good fruits and vegetables.  They have certain nutrients that actually help the immune system and block cancer agents.  :)   That’s good news for us!  For all of us, not just people with cancer or that have had cancer.  I liked the article too because it stressed not worrying because that contributes to higher blood sugars also.

Eat healthy.  Think positive and be happy.  The be happy message is so important.  it includes being kind to yourself and cutting yourself some slack for being human!  We are all jsut human and we make mistakes.  Spend less time criticizing your self and more time loving yourself.  I am doing the best I can on taking care of my health.  I will continue to do so and manage the best I can, day to day.  That’s all I can do.  The rest is in someone elses hands :)

Thank you God for this day!stairs

 

 

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How Did You Play As a Kid?

dancingPlay can be a most useful thing.  It is so good for our soul, and good for our healing.  Sadly, we forget it to fast and are way to serious.  People that have had cancer definitely can take a look at how they played as a child.  It might help them learn to relax and not be so focused on the complexity of life.

Why can’t it just be that simple? Why can’t we just take the time to sit down, and think about what it was we did to have fun.  Give it a try now.  I will do it with you.  No I have never done this before, but I am willing to just try.

Think back to one of your earliest memories.  What were you doing?  Who was there?  When do you remember laughing so hard you cried and really felt connecting?

 

 

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Helpful Links for Family and Friends. Diagnosis and How to Grasp it All

Here is a link to cancer diagnosis and understanding them. Its one of the best articles I have seen.

http://ihatebreastcancer.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/what-have-we-learned-about-metastatic-breast-cancer-charlie-brown/

The above is a blog from another survivor’s site.  It has good information to share with others who are early diagnosed or family members that want to knPurpletreeow what breast cancer is all about, and how it is staged and defined.  Its a good source of information to share.

I recently had an old friend diagnosed with BC and I have found it to have a huge impact on my feelings.  Its sort of overwhelming and very unexpected.  I feel the old anxiety and panic attacks coming on and I know this is not good for me.  It makes my body produce chemicals that I don’t want it to be producing.

Another’s diagnosis doesn’t bring up all my old stuff, I don’t think but maybe this is my bodys way of not wanting to deal with it.  Cancer treatment is tough, there is no way around it.  Adjusting your body to have missing parts, and inability to ‘feel’ in many places on your body is just weird.  And it is there every day when you wake up…It’s there when you are trying to sleep and its uncomfortable.  Its there when you roll over at night and some nerve ending somewhere fires.  I can actually almost ignore them when I am in bed now.  When they first happened I jumped up and ‘what the hell was that’ came out of my mouth.

There are so many unknown answers, and unknown things to expect. or to deal with.  I wish they could end all kinds of cancer.  I have lost a lot of people in my life to cancer. My two favorite friends, Olga and Barry.  Ovarian and Colon cancer, not even breast cancer.

My aunt in law, Nancy to breast cancer.  My aunt Clarice to liver cancer (not diagnosed but suspected breast cancer). My friend Darryl to Lung cancer (yes a smoker). My x husband (although it was  a very short time) to some kind of cancer, nobody told me till it was over.  and my first x husband had thyroid cancer but survived, probably compliments of smoking or agent orange in Vietnam.  And of course, Ashley to Pancreatic cancer.

 

I can’t explain all my feelings. I go to the support group and I think I am over it, and that just brings it all up again.  People laugh at me when I say I am 18 months out from diagnosis.  I guess I am still a newbie. LOL  The only thing I am not ‘old’ at!

Okay, got to go make some chamomile tea and see if that helps.

left right left right, all around the town.

 

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Stepping Forward

“I have no past–the steps have disappeared
the wind has blown them away.”
James Kavanaugh, There Are Men Too Gentle to Live Among Wolves    

I love James Kavanaugh’s poetry.  There are Men Too Gentle to Live Among Wolves is the only thing I remember memorizing and not forgetting.  But I really liked the above quote which I found today.  Our lives are like that….footprints in the sand..but the wind does blow over them and the only direction is forward to new footprints.  Because the old footprints have disappeared.

Interesting thoughts.  Our past is like that.  and probably best forgotten, so the path ahead is open.  We cling to a lot of things from the past, perhaps because they are familiar; perhaps because we ‘think’ we ‘should’ because of roles we play or think we are assigned.  Perhaps the answer is in the wind.

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Back Online! The Pink Elephant in the Room.

unpluggedHey I am back!!  Been getting my blog site unscrewed up, and it has taken awhile.  Victory, today we are back up and running!

Its all so exasperating.  I spent two weeks going crazy because I could not write, and now I can and I can’t think of anything to say. LOL.  Isn’t that like women?  Okay okay I will not bash my own gender!  But we are a wonderful lot. I think all you men are lucky! So you better take care of us!  We need you.  Whether we show it or not all the time, is I know questionable.  But we do need you.  Everybody needs somebody.  Its just hard to be vulnerable and expose your soft side to someone.

I think what we need to remember is that we are all just doing the best that we can.  And accept each other right there.  It is very hard to forgive someone, that has done you a big wrong.  But the longer you take, the more damage it does to you.   So spend your emotional energy somewhere, where it is worthwhile.

Someone once said “That truth will set you free but first it will make you miserable”.

Just don’t let it make you miserable too long.  I am off to gym to get some exercise. I have found this really helps me feel better all day long.  Find what helps you feel better and do it!  Have a great day.

 

 

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