Monday, March 4, 2013

Such a bad mother...

Haven't been here in over a month.
That lovely month of mindful writing that I swore I was going to extend.
But I didn't.
I shut right down.
Quit paying attention.
Quit writing.
Every day that passed made me feel more ashamed.
I'd let myself down.
I ran away.

Oh sure, work was busy.
Very busy.
It felt like it was encroaching on my every moment.
And I was resentful of that.
Still am, in a way.
Not that I don't like my job.
As far as jobs go, it's a pretty nice gig.
I work from home most of the time,
and only go into the office one day a week.
I'm left alone for the most part,
to get the work done at my own pace.
I like that.
Hell, I love that.

But, at the same time,
when shit comes up on the weekend,
I have to deal with it.
Which I don't like.
This year, it's felt like a lot of my weekends
have been consumed with dealing with crises.
Man-made ones, of course,
with an emphasis on man.
So yeah, I had a bit of a bad attitude
coz I treasure my weekends.

And then, toward the end of February,
since work was letting up a bit,
there was a crisis of a different kind.
This crisis should have actually inspired
volumes of poetry, or whatever it is that I write.
But it didn't.

I decided to have my cat declawed.
I've never been a huge believer in it,
but she's torn up 3 couches and
I was getting sick of her scratching everything.
Tried scratching posts,
but they aren't nearly as fun as couches,
doors, wood trim, and whatever else struck her fancy.
So  yeah, I made the decision to declaw her.
And, at first, it seemed that everything had gone wonderfully.
I was sent home with antibiotics and painkiller for her.
The first few days were fine.
And then after the painkiller was gone,
I noticed her getting quiet.
She wouldn't move around as much.
She didn't want to be around us.
She stopped eating.
She looked like she was losing weight.
And then, over the weekend,
she really took a dive.
Wouldn't eat, wouldn't drink.
Started peeing on the floor
Wasn't pooping.
Felt cold to the touch.
On Sunday afternoon, she could barely walk.

Monday morning, I rushed her to the vet.
I thought maybe she was impacted.
The vet was wondering if she was having heart or liver problems.
We took blood.
He sent me to another clinic for x-rays to see if she was impacted.
When they brought her out, they told me to go back to the other clinic.
She wasn't impacted.
Her kidneys were "in really bad shape."
So, worried even more, I made my way back to the clinic.
And in the exam room, I got the horrible news.
My Bella, the love of my life, was in renal failure.
Her temperature was only 96.3
Her BUN, creatinine, phospherous and potassium were ridiculously high.
The vet wasn't sure she'd make it through the day.

I felt my heart tearing apart.
How did this happen?
Was it the medicine?
She was fine before she had the operation and I had to give her the medicine.

So, I left her there so they could pump some fluids into her.
I cried and cried and cried some more.
I felt like such a bad mother coz I didn't notice her symptoms sooner.
Goddammit, why couldn't I see what was happening?

Well, she made it through that night, thankfully.
Her temp came back to normal.
So I drove in to visit her.
And I bought her some Fancy Feast, hoping that would make her want to eat.
Well, she didn't oblige me while I was there.
She could barely lift her head to look at me.
But she purred.
And purred.
And purred some more.
And I kissed her and begged her to hold on.
To fight.
To not leave me.

And she didn't.
Wednesday, her blood work looked a little better.
Numbers still high, but not in the stratosphere.
We got them into the same galaxy, at least.
And she started eating.
Oh, hallelujah. She started eating.
And I visited her again.
And I loved on her.
And she purred.
And meowed.
And looked me in the eye.
My baby.

Thursday, she ate some more.
All of a sudden her appetite returned with a vengeance.
What a great sign!
And I visited.
Yes, even though it was 55 miles one way to the clinic,
I made sure I went and saw her everyday she was in there.
I wanted her to know that I hadn't forgotten about her.
I wanted her to get kisses and love.
I wanted to will her back to health if I could.
So I loved on her
and she purred. And purred. And even did a little chirpy meow.

I told her that we were doing everything we could for her
but she had to meet us halfway.
We needed her to eat.
We needed her to poop.
We needed her to show that she wanted to live.
We needed her to care.
And she did.

Friday morning, her bloodwork was so much better.
Still high BUN and creatinine, but manageable.
Close to normal levels, even.
she got to come home.

What I was worried was an impossible dream on  Monday
came true on Friday.
My baby came home.

Yes, she's still not herself.
she's eating.
She's drinking.
She's pooping.
She's purring.

So, even though I feel like a bad mother for missing the signals,
I'm also a happy mother because I gave her the chance to make a recovery.

Now, I've also been a bad mother to this blog
And, it can be argued,
to myself.

Nothing life-threatening, though.
Just a slight case of shame in this case.

Nothing like the shame I feel for what Bella went through.
Oh, and you know what?
Yeah, it was all my fault.
Well, not ALL my fault, but
if she hadn't had the operation,
the renal failure wouldn't have happened.

The culprit?
Remember that name, if you have cats.
It's FDA approved for ONE-TIME USE ONLY in cats. Most times, it's used pre-surgically to handle post-surgical pain and inflammation.
I was sent home with 3 syringes of it.
That is what is called "off-label" use by the FDA. It's not illegal. It's just not recommended.
And you know why it's not recommended?
Because when they tested this on cats trying to get approval to market it for cats,
they tested 320 cats. 105 of those cats ended up with kidney failure, 48 died, and 35 ended up having to be euthanized. Not very good stats, guys.
So, there is where my guilt and shame is - if I hadn't insisted on her being declawed, she would not have ended up getting sick.
And, if I had only asked what was being used. And researched it a bit. If only.
Woulda, shoulda, coulda.
Those three words are brutal. They will drive you mad.

So, my recommendation?
If you have a cat that needs surgery, ask what painkiller they use.
If it's Metacam, think long and hard about whether you want to play those odds.
Ask them what they used before.
Have your cats kidney and liver functions tested.
If anything, and I mean anything, is borderline - do NOT take a chance.
Bella was in great health.
Think about it.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Last Day of the Mindful Writing Challenge

Last day of January.
It's so hard to believe that the Mindful Writing Challenge is over.
Well, it's not really over.
All of us in the group,
or a good portion anyway,
are going to continue the practice
of writing our small stones every day.

This has been so much fun!
I can't even properly express what it's meant to me.

When my friend invited me to the challenge,
I was overwhelmed. Scared. Sure I would fail.
But, guess what?
I wrote something every single day of the month!

Maybe I didn't get them posted every day,
but they were scribbled in my notebook -
sometimes, quite hastily, I might add.

I found a group of like-minded folks
all with beautiful words
wrapped around their small stones.
We read each other's work
and took joy in it.
What a wonderful January it's been!

And, I have my last two stones of the month to post...

From yesterday:

Walking across the soggy yard, 
the ground squishing beneath my feet.
There's a moment when I wonder if
I will sink beneath the surface
and find myself in Wonderland. 

We had so much rain that everywhere I walked yesterday,
I sort of sank a bit into the ground.
Yes, even on the driveway!
It was such an odd feeling
that I had to write about it.
It's that moment when something so very familiar,
suddenly isn't anymore.
There's delight to be found there.
So, it turns out that, at that moment,
I was already in Wonderland!

And that brings us to today.
The final day of the challenge.
Not the final day of this blog,
or of me writing,
or of our Facebook group.
Just the final day of the challenge.
And here is my small stone for Day 31:

A hostile army 
has invaded my stomach.
Cells are dividing and conquering, 
and there is quite a battle being fought.
My greatest wish right now
is for peace to be restored.

I started feeling a bit yucky yesterday afternoon,
but thought it was the chips that I ate.
I thought I just had too many of them.
So I took a short nap,
hoping I would be better.
And I was. A bit.
Yes, I was a bit better,
and I thought I was going to get lucky
and be okay today.
Nope. Not lucky.
Woke up this morning feeling
like leftover crap.
So, it's a lazy day today.

And, tomorrow?
There will be another small stone.
And another after that.
I will not stop writing.
Not again.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

More catching up to do...Small Stones everywhere!

Boy, I'm telling ya...
If the rest of this year is like January has been,
I don't know if I'll make it.
It's been balls to the wall all of this month.

Now, don't get me wrong,
I don't mind working.
Not at all.
What I mind is my life being taken over by my job.
I guess it's inevitable in a way
since I mostly work from home
and only go into the office one day a week.

But, there has to be some boundaries.
I have got to quit answering emails after 5.
I have to put the work down and not pick it back up.
I have to do this or I'm going to pull my hair out.

So, once again,
thanks to work taking over my life,
I got behind on this blog
and my posting of small stones.
I've posted in the Facebook group
and even had to play catch up there.

What I just noticed is, that even though I posted my Friday stone
in the Facebook group on Friday,
I never made it over here to post it. Dammit.
Here's my Friday stone:

Friday, 1/25/13

Standing outside myself,
I watch an epic temper tantrum
being thrown by my 5 year old self.
She doesn't show up too often,
at least not like that,
but when she does,
it's a sight to see!
It anyone else was here,
they would have seen a middle-aged woman
acting like a fool.
But I saw the hurt child inside that woman
raging against the
petty injustices of life.

Yeah, Friday was a frustrating day, to say the least. I was hanging on by a thread, and that thread just frayed all to hell. It wasn't pretty. Neither is my small stone. But, it's honest. Brutally so. And I own it.

I checked out on Friday and worked on getting back to myself.
I needed to renew and recharge myself.

Yes, I noticed things. And yes, I wrote.
But, I never made it over to the Facebook page to post,
and I never made it here either.

So, in posting my weekend and Monday stone yesterday,
someone pointed out to me how they all flowed together
in a natural progression.
I hadn't noticed until she pointed that out,
but she's write.

Here are my three small stones, in order, for Saturday, Sunday and Monday:

Saturday 1/26/13

There is really nothing better
than waking up on Saturday morning
knowing that you don't have to work.

Sunday 1/27/13

How quickly weekends fly by...
A blink,
A nod,
and it's gone.

Monday 1/28/13

That sneaky, stealthy sleepiness
that ambushes you
on a Monday.

So...that pretty much told the story of the weekend and it's aftermath, right? Three very small stones - pebbles, really. They don't make much of a splash. Just a little plop. But, there they are.

I also wrote something yesterday
about something I noticed Friday.
It ties in with the three above, but
it never made it to the Facebook group
since it was written after the fact.
No more cheating. :-)
So, this was just an extra little something:

Friday afternoon
and I feel like a cell phone
with a low battery.
I'm here
I look the same as always
I'm just not working so well.
Time to plug into the weekend and
get recharged.

And, I did get recharged.
In the most wonderful way.
Just a nice, quiet weekend
with the man I love.

So, now we're up to Tuesday!
And here is today's small stone:

The advance of a storm front
is creaking it's way through my bones today.
The pounding of my sinuses
tells me the barometer is dropping.
I don't even have to watch the weather anymore -
Age has made me a prognosticator.

No, I'm not the first to bring this up,
but it's a bitch getting older.
Your body, the one that took so much abuse when you were younger
without even a peep,
has stored up every injury and hurt,
and now decides to tell you about them.

I'm at an age where I finally got my head together
and now my body is falling apart.
Fun times.

What to do?
Write, that's what.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Let's Play Catch-Up with Small Stones!

Playing catch-up.

Work has got to stop interfering with my life this way!
Buried alive in work
and here I am blogging.
There's a name for this, that I just learned
Positive procrastination.
I like it!

Anyway, fell way behind with the stones again
because it's been another hectic week.

Monday, I finally got around to coloring my hair.
(It was another lovely moment of positive procrastination!)
Hadn't been colored in 5 weeks, and to me, the gray was way too noticeable.
So, of course, that provided a stone for me:

A little bottle, 
A little time, 
No more gray. 

Short, sweet, and to the point.
I like it. :-)

But, that little pebble wasn't the one that I posted in the
Small Stones Facebook group.
This is my 'official' small stone from Monday the 21st:

The soft snores of
two cats & a man
provide the background music
to an unexpected moment of bliss.

That was Monday evening, after dinner.
Other half was in a food coma,
cats were just in their regular coma.
I was sitting at the laptop, just listening.
And feeling that everything was right in the world.
For that moment, it was.

Tuesday was another hectic day, in a series of hectic days.
Brain was fried from a meeting with accountants
speaking accountant-speak.

Mind buzzing,
whirling around madly,
trying to figure it all out. 
All I figured out was
I'm tired.

Pretty clear, huh? LOL

Moving on to Wednesday, and, you guessed it,
another hectic day!
If the rest of the year is like January has been so far,
I think I will scream. And cry. And have temper tantrums.
Fair warning.

Driving home, 
traffic on the highway reminds me of
gnats buzzing around my head.

The imagery is pretty apt
since everyone here in the Indianapolis area
swears they are driving in the Indy 500.

And that brings us to today. Thursday.
Still buried in work.
Still finding ways to not get started and get it done.

Woke up this morning to a bit of a surprise...

Like a thief in the night,
winter came, 
stole my green grass
and left a white blanket behind.

I don't know why I was so surprised -
the weather forecast did call for a chance of snow showers.
But, they also said there would be no accumulation,
not even enough for ground cover.
Ok, so they were right on the 'no accumulation' part, but
not so right on the 'ground cover' part.
It amazes me how often the weather forecast is wrong
and yet I still believe them!

Looks like I went into the wrong line of work.

Speaking of work, I can't put it off any longer.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Small Stone, Day 20

Day 20 of the Mindful Writing Challenge already!
11 more days to go.
But, I think I may just keep this going after the month is over.
It's good practice to write something every day.

Lord knows I've missed writing.
It tortures me, at times,
but it's part of who I am.
I've been doing this all of my life.
Off and on.
Bursts of mad creativity
followed by extremely dry spells.

I think this challenge has actually helped me though.
It used to be that I could only write
if something was on my mind,
or if something was eating at me.
But, I'm finding that by just paying attention,
I can find something cool to write about
no matter what my mood or the circumstances.

That, to me, is a huge breakthrough.

So, we'll see if I can keep this going.
It would be a shame to have started this blog and
then let it wither and die after January is over.
That's the plan, then.
I'll just keep writing.

Today's small stone is tiny.
Just a moment's awareness
that crystallized into words:

Monday hovers over
this Sunday evening
like some overbearing lover
you can't get rid of. 

Doesn't that say it all?
I hate how Monday rears it's ugly little head
and invades my Sunday evening.
Pushy bitch.
You can't come in yet.
Go away.
It's still the weekend.
It's still MY time.
You are not welcome on my time.

Can you tell I really don't like Mondays?

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Catching up on Small Stones

Wow, I'm such a neglectful mother!
This blog is my baby, and a newborn, at that,
and yet, I've let real life (translation: my job) take me away from it.

Schedule has been unbelievably hectic lately.
I've even skipped days for my mindful writing challenge,
which makes me feel guilty and somehow 'not good enough.'

I sit here and berate myself for letting work take over my life,
and yet, right now, I can't get away from it.
Hopefully, after this week, things will calm down a bit.
It does spring eternal, after all.

So, my last post was for days 13 & 14.
The 15th was a 'lost' day - no small stone.
It's not that I didn't have 3 minutes to stop and pay attention.
I had the 3 minutes,
but I couldn't pay attention.
My mind was all over the place
and it just would NOT settle.

So, the 15th was lost.
But here is my small stone for the 16th:

Water has receded slightly;
The freeze has arrived
and cornfields have morphed 
into ice skating rinks. 

It's a very small stone, indeed.
But, it was something that really captured my attention and wouldn't let go,
so, I had to throw it into the stream, so to speak.

The stone from the 17th is, right now, one of my favorites:

The twinkle in your eyes
sets my heart aflame.
Your smile
lights the corners of my soul. 
Those little moments
aren't so little - 
They are everything.

Yes, they are. And it's nice to be reminded of that.

The 18th, unfortunately, was another lost day.
Work stole another one from me.
Spent all day at the accountant's office,
cleaning up the books.
Came home and hurriedly made supper.
Fell asleep after supper for a short nap
that morphed into six hours of dead sleep.

So, here I am, doing laundry at 5 in the morning,
after playing around on Facebook for the last 4 hours.
But, laundry presented me with my small stone for today:

Washer is grinding away - 
sighing loudly...
I think it's terminal.

Yep, I think my washer is dying a slow and painful death.
And I sit here feeling bad.
It's been a good washer -
a rebuilt off-the-scrap-heap Maytag,
that gave me almost 6 years of faultless service.
I will mourn it's passing.
I'm sure I will mourn how much a replacement will cost me, too!

So, yeah...
this week has been challenging.
I find that I don't have enough time to concentrate on the things I want to do.
And next week promises more of the same.
Which has set me to thinking about what I can do to change that.

I'm sure that will be percolating in my heart, soul, and mind for the next few weeks.
Or month(s).
Won't be years, though - something will click into place.
I'll make sure of it.

Until then, I'm hoping for no more lost days.
I've been enjoying this mindful writing exercise too much.
And while my stones may not be colorful or elaborate,
they've got me writing again.
That is a huge victory.
I have rediscovered something I thought I'd lost.
My voice.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Double Whammy Small Stones, 13 & 14

Yesterday was an interesting day.
We've had a shitload, and I mean a shitload, of rain.
We had so much rain Saturday afternoon
and overnight into Sunday morning
that it flooded everywhere.
Luckily, we are on higher ground
and not awfully close to any streams or rivers,
so the area around the house is good.

But we went out to breakfast yesterday morning,
as is our habit,
and I decided to go toward Interstate 70 and take that route
because I believed that the back way would probably be flooded.

Just driving up to 70 was a revelation.
The one creek or stream was almost up to the bridge,
cornfields were partially flooded,
and water was lapping at the road.

Once we got on 70, it was even more dramatic -
the whole northern side next to the highway was
nothing but water.
It was wild.

Which inspired yesterday's small stone:

Minor flooding
sounds so benign, 
until you see water 
covering the landscape
and transforming it into
an alien planet. 

Once we went to breakfast, there were parts of the route that looked okay,
so I was convinced by my partner to go the back way.
Not such a great idea. LOL
We got to the place that usually floods and, of course, it was flooded and closed.
So I turned around and went down a road I didn't know trying to find a way around it.
Got to a t-intersection and turned left.
Yeah, should have turned right.
That was totally flooded too.
He tried to convince me to drive through that, but
I didn't know the road, so I couldn't gauge how deep the water was.
Nope. Not chancing it. Not in a Prius!
So I finally got out of there and realized that I better go to the store for a few things
because I knew I probably wasn't going to be able to go anywhere for a few days.
So I headed up toward 70 again.
The road I had traveled a couple of hours before now had water covering it in a few parts, but it wasn't deep.
So, nervously (because I'm a chicken shit,) I drove slowly through and made it to the store.
On the way back, it was even more flooded.
I came around the curve and there was an SUV just sitting there, wondering what to do.
So I slowly made my way down to where the water was and drove on the opposite side
of the road because it wasn't quite as deep there as my side was.
The SUV followed me for a few feet until it saw me going through the water.
I looked in my rear view window to see him turning around and
getting the hell out of Dodge!
In the midst of the nervousness I felt,
that image made me laugh.

So yeah, I figured it would only be worse today
and I was right.
No way could the Prius make it through that lake,
which inspired today's small stone:

When you can't go to the store
because the road is flooded, 
that's when you notice
what you need from the store. 
This humorous moment 
was brought to you by 

I imagine it will still be flooded tomorrow, but it may be down enough that I can get through.
We shall see...

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Small stone, Day 12

once again, I'm late getting to the blog.
I know, I know,
it's now day 13, not day 12.
But, this small stone was written
quite a few hours before midnight,
so even though I'm posting it here
on the 13th,
it was posted on the group page on the 12th.

Today's small stone
is brought to you by the wonders of technology.
Yes, it's a wonderful thing.
When it works.
But, there are times
when it decides to take
it's own sweet time, aren't there?

And, since I'm not renowned for my patience,
it aggravates me.
And there's really nothing sillier
than a grown woman
sitting in front of a computer
swearing furiously at it.
Just the thought of it makes me giggle.

Anyway, here's my little pebble of the day
for Friday, January 12th:

The tiny blue wheel
spins round and round
while seconds stretch to eternity. 
Will this page ever load?

Yeah, I know - it's nothing special.
But, I like it anyway, for some odd reason.

Let's hope I can get back to the music today
and make my small stone sing a sweet song.
I'm getting a little tired of the barely audible hum...

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Small Stone, Day 11

Okay, this isn't a cheat.
The small stone was written on the 11th,
and it was posted on the Facebook page
for the mindful writing group on the 11th.

The problem is,
it's not very good.
I was rushed,
it was getting late,
and I had just found out that
I basically have to work all weekend.

And by all weekend, I mean
ALL weekend.
Lots of data entry to input
to try and get caught up on orders
for my job.
How special is that?

So yeah, it was a rushed stone
and not a very good one.

I find that the more I want to
devote time to the things
that matter most to me,
the more real life interferes
and tries to throw me off the path.

This past week has been very busy
and I haven't been able to devote the time I want
to the things that I want to do.
I guess it's the problem everyone has.

I have to work to make a living
but I end up living to work.
Where is that elusive balance I so desperately need?
Where, oh where, is my magic lottery ticket?

here is my shitty small stone for Day 11.
There is no heart or soul here
I phoned it in, and it shows.
But, at least I wrote SOMETHING.

Eyes are being assaulted by the Sandman...
It's too early to go to bed for the night, 
but it's too late for a nap. 
I'm fighting a battle I'm going to lose. 
Where did I put that white flag?

Well, it has one thing going for it -
it's honest.

Hoping that Day 12 affords me a
few moments of mindfulness
midst the hours of work ahead of me.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Small Stone, Day 10

Missed a day yesterday.
No small stone to be had.
I was too busy
with work
with not feeling well
with not slowing down to pay attention.

Yes, I feel bad.
Now, that doesn't mean I didn't write anything yesterday
because I did.
I just don't think it's worthy
of putting out into the universe.

So, yesterday was a lost day.
I have them sometimes.
I'm willing to bet you do, too.

What gave me pause
was that I thought today would be lost, too.
It would be oh so easy to just give up,
to forget this mindful writing challenge,
to stifle myself. Again.

But, I'm going to keep going.
It's all I know how to do.

Still not feeling well
and I'm sitting here freezing.
I thought it was supposed to be warm today...

A fleeting glance at the thermometer
throws me for a loop. 
How odd!
The weatherman was wrong... 
I think I went into the wrong line of work. 

Granted, it's warmer than it has been,
but it's nowhere near what they said it would be.
And the rain is making it feel colder, too.

I'm hoping the forecast is a little closer to reality for tomorrow.
I would enjoy it just a tad warmer.

So that's my extremely small stone for today.
I don't think it sings
but I do detect a low hum about it.

Maybe tomorrow will sing.
I hope.

No small stone today, Day 9

Well, Day 9 and no small stone.
Very distracted with work today.
Really haven't had a moment to myself where I could just be
and allow it to happen.
I've been on auto-pilot today.

Doesn't mean I haven't written though.

But, it just means I didn't pay attention
and do any mindful writing.
No small stone today.

Hopefully, I will make up for it tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Small Stone, Day 8

I had to run to the bank today to deposit a check.
It's an event
because my bank is 25 miles away.
Living out in the boonies
means nothing is close.

Noticed a lot of state boys out and about on my way to the bank.
Sitting there, waiting to catch someone speeding
or driving recklessly
or who knows what.

The highway was full of them.
But, I thought nothing of it.

Until, that is, I made my return trip home.

I saw the familiar lights and thought
'oh, they snagged someone.'
And then, coming closer, I saw there were
two cop cars pulling over a pick-up truck.

And what really caught my attention?
One cop was walking a German Shepherd around the truck.
It was a young German Shepherd
Possibly a trainee.

It was just so odd that it stuck in my brain.
And become my small stone for today:

Red & blue pulsating lights at the side of the road.
A stunning, young black & tan German Shepherd 
is determinedly doing his job,
walking around and sniffing a cherry red pick-up.
What do you smell, handsome boy? 
Will there be extra treats for you when you're done?

An interesting small stone.
Truthfully, it was rather disconcerting, in a way.
But, like Scarlett O'Hara, I'm just
not going to think about that right now.
Nope, I'm not.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Small Stone, Day 7

It's Monday.
The first Monday after the Christmas/New Year Holiday extravaganza.
Is there anything 
I want to do less than get back to the grind?
Not really.

Add an unexpected trip to the ER 
and it just threw the whole day off. 

So, my small stone will come as no surprise, I guess. 

Brain is jumbled
Full of cobwebs
Feels like I'm in a haunted house.

As far as the whole ER trip goes,
everything is fine. 
Well, it's not fine,
but it's not bad enough to be admitted.
So, it will be fine. 


Sunday, January 6, 2013

Small Stone, Day 6, Part 2

Remember how I said, in my previous post,
that I thought my small stone for today was a cheat?
Well, it was. Kind of. Sort of.
True, it was something I noticed yesterday,
it settled deep down inside of me and
didn't surface until this morning.
So, yes, it was technically a cheat since it was noticed yesterday.

Well, the Universe gifted me with another
so that I can have a "legitimate" small stone for today.

I'm not going to say too much about this one.
It describes itself pretty well
without having any back story.

The emphatic message to be delivered by a slammed door

loses something in translation

when the damned door won't slam.

For me, however, it presented a gift - 

an internal chuckle

that took the edge right off of that grand gesture. 

That just made the loveliest splash when I threw it into the river of stones...

Small Stone, Day 6

Day 6 and I feel like I'm cheating a bit.
Today's stone is actually
something I noticed yesterday.
But, it burrowed deep inside
and fermented for awhile
before coming to the surface.

So, does that count?
Or, do I need to write another stone today
detailing something I noticed today?

I must admit, it kind of feels like a cheat,
but I'm putting it out there anyway
because I like it.
So there!

The frost envelops the bare branches
like sparkling fairy dust, 
transforming a frigid winter day
into sheer magic. 

There's something about this one that I really like.
Maybe it's because it allows me to see what I saw yesterday
driving down the drab, gray interstate.
All along the sides of the road, all the small trees and bushes were
covered in frost.

And, it was magical.

I love those little moments when I can feel
the child inside of me
sit up and take notice.
I can hear her "ooh" and "ahh"
and it makes me smile.

So, even if it is cheating to use
something I noticed yesterday
for today's stone,
forgive me for the cheat.
To me, it's worth it.

And who knows?
Maybe I'll have something else to add today.
You just never know what you might notice
once you start paying attention.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Small Stone, Day 5

Day 5 and I'm still paying attention.
Color me amazed.
I thought for sure that I would chicken out by now.

What I find interesting about this Mindful Writing challenge is that each day,
I have no idea if I am even going to be able to write anything.
I also have no idea,
until I start writing,
what I am going to write about.

So I find it rather amazing
that something has caught my attention each day, so far.

Maybe I've been over-thinking this writing thing.

What a shocker, huh?

A few moments ago, I stopped what I was doing and started paying attention to what was around me. Granted, I'm inside the house on a lazy Saturday, so I was really wondering what would possibly jump out at me, when I noticed my cat lying on the floor.

Overweight, long haired kitty
stretched out on the floor
like a beached whale. 
She's cornered the market on relaxation. 
Makes me wonder -
Do whales snore?

Sorry, but this one makes me chuckle.

If it makes you chuckle too, well then, it's bonus time!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Small Stone, Day 4

Today's stone is brought to you by the Universe.

Just when I think the magic has disappeared,
up pops a most wonderful gift to show me that
it's always around.
All I have to do is look up, look around.
Pay attention.

Merging onto the highway,
my attention is suddenly not on the traffic. 
I'm transfixed by the splash of rainbow color
on a wispy cloud in a small patch of blue.
It's a moment of magic on 
on a gray day; 
a gift received with glee.

I had heard of iridescence in the clouds before. I had even seen it once before about two months ago.

Having seen it once, I thought that was it. I thought I'd used up my moments of magic and I'd never see it again.

So, when I looked up and saw it again, I felt like a little girl again - amazed by the awesomeness of the universe.

What a nice reminder to pull me out of the dreary routine of everyday life.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Small Stone, Day 3

Here we are. Day 3.
I'd like to say I'm going strong, but that would be a lie.
Real life is interfering in a way that I resent.
But, I did stop work for a few minutes.
Long enough to look out the window.
To notice something.
To feel that delight when I knew it could be a pebble to toss in the river.

And so, here is my small stone for today:

The cars drive down the unplowed road,
gliding and spinning with an unexpected grace. 
Motorized ice skaters put on quite a show.

Herein lies my frustration: the event itself filled me with glee, but the writing doesn't.

Well, it's in the river now, so maybe the current will wash it clean and make it sparkle. Or, it could just sink to the bottom and disappear into the mud.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


Cue The Twilight Zone theme, please.

I was scrolling through Facebook and came upon a post by Healing Energy Cards. Now, anyone who knows me knows that I love oracle cards and tarot cards. I have a bunch of decks that just delight and surprise me every morning when I pull cards for the day.
I "liked" the Healing Energy Cards because I've seen some shared by friends and, of course, I want to add them to my collection.

Anyway, they just posted that you can now pick a card of the day on their website! Squeee!

Naturally, I raced over (in a manner of speaking) to pull a card. I went through my usual pre-draw ritual of sorts to quiet myself and let Spirit take over. When I opened my eyes and clicked on the card I was drawn to, I got this:

The Creation card

See what I mean about playing the theme from The Twilight Zone? And this kind of thing happens all the time when I draw cards. They really do talk!

Now I feel optimistic about Day 3 of the Mindful Writing Challenge. Creative energy is around me and I'm going to grab it out of the ether.

Watch me!

If you'd like to check out the Healing Energy Cards, please go to

Small Stone, Day 2

Day 2, and I was wondering if I was going to be able to do this.
Woke up feeling fuzzy-headed, creaky, and old. I didn't want to do anything but go back to bed.
But, I had to go into the office today. Lots to do and no ambition to do it. Lack of ambition only holds you back if you let it, though. I got everything done I had to and came back home, hoping I would find a pebble to throw in the river today.

Ah, but first things first. I went back and polished yesterday's stone a bit, so I just wanted to put the shiny and (hopefully) improved stone back in the river while I'm here:

Ebony richness
transformed into deep caramel in my cup. 
The cup reaches my lips - 
the deep caramel becomes
liquid gold on my tongue. 

So, what do you think? Did I shine it up properly? Does it sing clearer?

I have such a hard time trying to polish my work. Most of the time, I just toss it and start over. But, since I had sent that out into the universe already, I couldn't toss it, could I? No, I couldn't. There's something about it that I like. It's rather simplistic, but at the same time, it sings to me.

Today's stone doesn't sing to me. At all. Not sure I like it, even though I followed the protocol of the challenge.

This is what was suggested that I do:
1) Keep your eyes, nose, mouth, fingers, ears, and mind open.
2) Notice what happens around you and inside you.
3) Write it down.

Sounds pretty damn easy, doesn't it? Sure....easy.
Yes, it's easy as long as the critic isn't awake and bitching while I'm trying to write. And I don't mean another person around me. I mean me. There are many parts to me - way too many to count, some days. Most of the time, they all coexist quite nicely. Thankfully, they never actually get to the point of revolution. But, it can get spirited inside me.

The critic was bitching the whole time today. All I kept hearing was how badly I sucked and how dare I have the audacity to think I could write. To listen to the critic, you'd think I spent time dreaming about being a world-famous author or something. I won't lie - I've had those daydreams from time to time. But, I'm also a realist. Writing is more for me than anyone else. I'm not saying it wouldn't please me if someone else got something out of it, but that's not why I do it.

So, after that small tiff with the critic, I banished her to her room so I could attempt this mindful writing thing I'm supposed to be doing.

I sat. I paid attention. I quieted myself. And that's when I noticed how loud silence really is. So, without further adieu, here is today's small stone:

Silence isn't really silent. 
I hear the hum of electricity and
the cheery click every once in awhile from my coffeemaker.
The oven beeps to let me know that it's pre-heated
while the laptop's fan sings it's hushed song. 
The house creaks, groans, and sighs, 
taking every opportunity to voice it's opinion. 
Silence is a lie.

So, yeah. It's not singing to me. At all. But, it's out there in the river now, and maybe the water will wash over it and bring out some sparkle. I can only hope.

If you'd like to check out more small stones and find out a little more about the Mindful Writing challenge, go here:

More tomorrow.
I hope.
And more than anything, I hope it sings.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Small Stone, Day 1

A friend of mine invited me to a Mindful Writing Challenge on Facebook for the month of January. Before I could think about it, I accepted. 
What the hell? 
Well, you know who accepted it, don't you? That writer inside of me that I've kept muffled for years. Yeah, her. The troublemaker. The real me. She clicked on that invite before I could stop her, so now I have to let her run free. 
And part of me is giggling madly. 
Another part is scared shitless. 
A writer? Me? Are you freaking kidding me? 
No, she isn't. 
She is the part of me that has been there all along. She's been waiting silently in the background for permission to come out and play. She asks, oh so nicely, for just a chance to see the sun, to feel the cool grass under her bare feet, to exist.
She scares me. She knows all of my secrets and isn't shy about telling them. Oh, she couches them in vague terms, of course, but she tells. 
Nothing is sacred to her.
Everything is fair game. 
And now, she is giggling in the background because she's forced my hand. 
Now, I have to write.
Truth be told, I'm kind of glad.

So yeah, I have to find a 'small stone' everyday and write about it. I have to pay attention to the real world instead of the cyber-world or the work world. Interesting. 

Let's see how this works out. It could be fun. It could be aggravating. It could be both, or neither. 

But now, I have to write. 
And, if I'm really honest with myself, I've always had to write. Why I've avoided it for so long, I have no idea. There is no good reason. I do have plenty of lame reasons though - I don't want to write crap. I don't have any good ideas. I can't find the words. It sounds stupid. I could go on and on. 

But, it's the first day and here is the first small stone that I'm tossing into the river: 

Ebony richness

transformed into deep caramel in my cup.
The cup reaches my lips 
the deep caramel is instantly transformed into
liquid gold.  

Yep, you guessed's about coffee. I found inspiration in coffee today. 

What will it be tomorrow?
I have no clue. 
No clue at all.