Showing posts from April, 2014

Simply No Diets

Dieting has been a major focus in our home since my cancer seven years ago . Emily and I have been on a quest , trying out anything that didn't involve a pill . 

We tried the health club thing . Everyday , it was the elliptical , the treadmill and the bicycle . The gym holds an even tie with public transportation as the most germ infested  , disgustingly unclean place . I would watch people use equipment and not wipe it down afterwards . Yuck , yuck and a triple yuck . When my cancer returned , I practically leaped with glee right out the door  and never returned . 

So then , we decided to buy an elliptical machine and exercise at home . This thing came in a million pieces to assemble , which I did all by myself . We still use it . . . occasionally , but never with a fervor we first imagined . 

Then came the diets : The slimfast 3-2-1 , the macro diets of juicing only , fasting , paleo , portion-sizing , veggies and fruits only , the cabbage
 soup , weight watchers , no carbohydrates …

April Update

It has occurred to me that I haven't done an update in quite awhile . So here goes . . . 

I have been on second shift for over two months now . At first , the lack of time available before or after work was a huge shock to me . I've had problems not keeping up before making the move , now they were almost impossible to accomplish . I've found myself taking days off to just finish up projects . What worked on third definitely wasn't working here .

There are benefits to being on this shift .  I feel so rested , long gone are the days of falling asleep at the wheel . This dreaded , beaten down tiredness doesn't exist anymore . I could sleep four hours and still wake up feeling good . Our bodies are meant to sleep at night and consume meals during the day . Our metabolism works for us and not against us . 

The majority of the work gets done on the weekends . I find myself being up with the rooster , feeling refreshed and ready to begin the day . I actually get to enjoy th…

Orphaned Me

As all of you may remember , my healthcare provider has not been able to come to an agreement with my hospital / cancer clinic  , so I no longer have a doctor / hospital . I guess , it is a very good thing I am in remission right now and not needing any treatment . What would I have done ? Postponed treatment until further notice ? 

Sometimes , I feel like hospitals and insurance providers are more like a business rather than an institution to help people get better . It's always about the money and making even more money . 

I went one last time , more to say goodbye then to get any examinations done . It was tearful to say the least . They have seen me in ways that even a husband hasn't , (:.:) , now we have to start all over again . 

So now that I'm an orphan , what and where do I go ? One of the things my former oncologist and I discussed was the different care available per hospitals in Illinois . They are a tight knit community having worked together at one time or anoth…

I Had A Dream

I drifted off to sleep not knowing the time nor my last thought . I felt very tired after coming home from work and all the plans I made in my mind for this weekend were put aside for the moment as I slept . 

Hours later , the minute my eyes opened , I remembered my dream as if it occurred seconds ago . I felt happy and refreshed , lingering in bed to savor the moment . A feeling of immense contentment and peace filled my being . 

In my dream , I walked into a familiar room filled with boxes . The floor was littered with them . I opened them up , only to find yarn of every color and design known to man . Each box held brighter and more beautiful colors then the last . 

I remember the feelings running through me . The excitement , the thrill  and amazement at the sight of being surrounded by something I so thoroughly enjoy . The pleasure and satisfaction of creating something beautiful for others to enjoy by simply blending colors together  . 

Even now as I recall the details , my fingers …

The End Is Near

And now the end is near
And so I face the final curtain
My friend I'll say it clear
I'll state my case of which I'm certain

Read more: Frank Sinatra - My Way Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Next week will mark the final days of third shift at work . 

Even though , the majority of us are already on our 

perspective shifts , there is a bit nostalgic feeling here .

Almost the entire crew has only known or worked with the people on this shift . We may be happy and well rested , but at times , we miss the familiarity of each other's company .

The other day , I found myself looking at old pictures of the old crew . I have cried with these people and I have laughed . We have shared our lives , argued passionately with one another , and been there when needed . 

So without further ado , here is my crew . 

Throwback Thursday

I smiled when I re-read this story from Fall of 2011 . I remember this young man very well . I wonder if his disposition has changed at all ?  My feelings , though  , have not changed regarding my relationships with loved ones . I still have a desire to make friends rather than foes . I have learned that although I may want to bury the hatchet and start over again in peace , others do not  . This is still difficult to accept .  I have changed . In time of troubles and  arguments , I basically hyper-ventilate with  distress , losing sleep . Peace at all costs , my new motto . 

It Takes A Tragedy      Every morning I drop Emily off to work  and every morning I run  into this young man who delivers all the baking goods . I irritate this young man .I don't move fast enough for him.I'm in his way . I park in the wrong spot. My very presence seems to send him off into a tirade of slamming car doors and throwing things around ,  waving hand gestures.
     What is he so angry about?Wh…

We Reap What We Sow

We reap what we sow . This one phrase can be translated in every language , in every Country , in every religion  and it's meaning rings loud and clear . There's no mistake or confusion in it's translation . It's the same all over the world . 

It's amazing to me that people can spend their entire life mistreating others in every way imaginable and not think their behavior wrong .   In fact , I've heard one such person be offended at being called a sinner . 

During a conversation with an upper management superior , they brought out something quite interesting . 
 " People like that are bullies , Lottie ."
Yes , they are . . . . bullies . 

Bullies attract other bullies . They strike at our vulnerabilities , because they are miserable . They're not happy with the path they have chosen  and instead of changing their life for the better , they choose an even worse path . 

We reap what we sow . 

We've all experienced these bullies at work and in our person…

More Weddings

Another wedding , a renewal of their vows , this time  . To every woman I have mentioned this to  , they thought it was highly romantic . To the man ? Highly expensive . 

To us women  , it's more than a renewal . To us it's an reaffirmation that he would marry us all over again  . After many years of marriage , it's a beautiful act of love to know he feels the same as before .

As much as I love Weddings , this one still surprised me . The minute I walked in , I was greeted by an old friend I haven't seen in ages . Then another and another  . . . . 

It set the tone for the evening . It was so much fun to catch up on old times , to see how much we have changed and for some , not at all . 

People walk out of our lives through what seems  at times a revolving door , but not forever . We end up running into each other down the road as we cross paths , even for a minute or two . 

As I drove home  that night , a warm feeling enveloped my being , glad that I made time to come . I h…

Throwback Thursday

For this edition of Throwback Thursday , I've reached deep inside for something on a lighter side . People have been very worried about me since a lot of this material has been difficult to read .
 I do have to remind all of you that during this time , I really had a hard time with cancer coming back . I believed I would die  and the chemo was very unpleasant , too . 
Chemo on television is portrayed in one way , usually with a bald , fragile victim covered with crocheted afghans , throwing up in the bathroom  and smoking a joint to relief the pain . Believe me , there are many different reactions as well as different varieties of chemotherapy .
 So , sit back and enjoy one of my son's favorite story I've ever written . Let me tell you that I still remember this day so clearly in my mind . 
Best Thing I Ever Ate     The nausea started as I wove in and out of the store aisles.Hoping to get all my shopping done as soon as possible I grabbed items quickly without really looki…

Saying I Do

Weddings bring out the softer and more emotional side inside of us . Weddings represent a new beginning , a new hope  and everlasting love . Who wouldn't be sentimental with all of that ? Spring is here and with it comes the wedding season . This month alone , I have
 two .

I love seeing young people enter into matrimony , because marriage seems to be going out of style . Couples prefer to live together instead of tying the knot in case things don't work out . When I was their age , my feelings were the same .

 I just didn't appreciate what marriage could do for me . Having experienced a truly horrible relationship myself , I didn't want to bother with the prospect of yet another one like it in my life . Basically , I gave up and settled for the mediocre .

Being alone is very difficult  and young people don't understand , because they feel they have all the time in the world , so why not enjoy themselves now . Later  on they will truly appreciate that two heads are def…

A Work Of Art

My fingers ached with the pain of over-exertion of the embroidery needle . Eyes burning , too much coffee and not enough sleep , my body felt no different .  I've spent my entire day and night working on these works of art . Art ? At least , they are to me . 

Never has anything meant so much to me as these simple creations made by my hands . They're not grand nor are they rich in texture or design  , but they came from my heart . 

I know it's difficult for people to understand the passion I feel for my Ministry . I'm the crazy crochet lady , but I feel I was made to do this . If only people felt the same as I , imagine what we could do together . 

Things weren't always like this . I didn't have a path , a journey to speak of , but traveled on impulse than  actual purpose . Look how long it took me to get where I am today . How can I be upset with mankind then ? 

I can't , because we have free will  to choose the way we want to 
go in life . Unfortunately , most …

The Stages Of Grief

It's 04:30 a.m. and I am up working at playing catch-up with the different roles in my life . As usual , I'm behind . Can we ever get anything done ?

I struggle to maintain some semblance of order  and completion of projects , but we all know the real culprit . . . . me . I take on way more than what I can handle . If we went back and re-read everything I have written from start to finish , there is something that keeps repeating itself . . . . time . 

Time changes everything . We never have enough of it and we are not aware of it's passage , but we crave it . Time changes our behavior . It can heal our broken hearts as well as our finding someone new to love . We can say goodbye to someone  in death and welcome a newborn babe at the same time . We can be filled with sorrow now , but we know that in time , we will see another rainbow . 

In Kubler-Ross’ model, she listed five stages of grief we 

experience when someone we love dies  . I believe this can 

apply to all areas of ou…

The Daily Rituals

Every morning , the first thing I do is have a cup of coffee and Emily has her green tea . We meet in my bedroom where the tales of the night before are told and the days agenda is planned . Then we go our separate ways . 

At supper time , after I say Grace , Emily reads a random verse from the Bible  and we discuss what it means . Sometimes , that verse actually pertains to whatever the prayer happened to have been . 

Where we eat our supper plays a huge role , too . We have a Couch day and a Table day . On Couch day , we sit comfortably in our comfy spots in the living room as we dine , watching a movie or favorite show . On Table day , it's more formal where we sit in the kitchen with the television off and actually have to converse with one another while we break
 bread . 

Sunday is our family day . That is the one day where we try not to fill with any appointments or events if we can help it . That day is strictly reserved for God and family . We do occasionally have a Wedding or…

Throwback Thursday

If you have a chronic illness , you have had to deal with the idea of death . Either you come to terms with it  or you allow it to take over your life . It's that simple .  Everyone I have spoken to has the same worry concerning death , the ones we leave behind . Who will take care of them ? What will happen to them ? That seems to be the number one concern . The second ? We want a quick and painless death , hopefully in our sleep .
Either way , death will come , whether we are ready for it or not . Wouldn't it be better if we were ? We take charge of our lives here on Earth and try to control the path we take . Why not do the same with our eternal life as well  . . . 

Why Are We So Afraid To Die ?   We , as Christians , have been taught about Heaven.We look forward to seeing Christ face to face.We know that it is a place filled with love , where sorrow and pain doesn't exist.It is a paradise unlike we have ever known.   Yet, we are so afraid to die. We fight for every brea…

And It Begins

I awoke  this morning to the jarring sound of multiple machines going at the same time . Not recognizing this loud piercing noise , I glanced out my bedroom window . An entire team of leaf blowers , lawn mowers and seed sowers   were assembled right below my bedroom window taking care of our lawn . 

And it begins .

For the rest of the morning and early afternoon , that sound echoed inside my head , as they went from one home to another . I grimaced , not only with pain , but with memories of summers past and the lack of sleep they have caused . 

And it begins .

There is nothing worse than working all night , getting off work at 6:30 a.m. and trying to lay down to sleep and  . . . . the symphony arrives to mow every single home in the neighborhood ! Oh , the sleep I have lost because of them . 

And it begins . 

This morning my heart sank remembering those old days . The headaches that would last all day . The tossing and turning of a restless sleep . Do they have to come so early in the morn…

The Older I Get . .

The older I get the more I want to just relax  . . .
and unwind  . . . 
and sit peacefully as I take in the surroundings around me . 

I look for diversity in my life and it's very obvious in the group of friends I surround myself with , all different ages and ethnic backgrounds . I watch them run from one activity to the next , barely taking a breath .  Everyday , they have somewhere to go and something  to do after work . These people know how to seriously play ! 

For me , it has become quite the opposite . They have to lure me to come out and play . I love the sanctuary of my apartment . I have everything I need and love to do right here in my haven . 

The glittering of party lights hold no appeal to me any longer . Those days or should I say nights , are long behind me . This may sound very boring to many of them , but it makes no difference to me . . . my goals are on an entirely different level . 

I have certainly changed a lot in my middle age . My satisfaction comes from my Minis…

Growing In The Spirit

I'm very confident about who I am in Christ . It's not my faith that goes into question , but my growth in it . That's what it is all about , isn't it ? Growing in the Holy Spirit . 

Have you ever experienced that tired and desperate feeling of standing still in your Faith ? That scared feeling of falling back if you don't connect back into the fold ? Have you ever said to yourself in Church , I'm just not feeling it today ? 

I believe we all experienced times where these thoughts were  prevalent . These dry spells of not being filled up with the Spirit come and go as the Seasons . 

Majority of the time when this happens to me , I find I need something new in my life . That something could be a Spiritual Retreat or a new Bible study course . Maybe a Fast or finding time to spend with God for some quiet meditation .

It's not always this simple , though . There are times when a quick fix with our soul is not enough . Sometimes , there needs to be a more thorough …

Throwback Thursday

Now that I'm in remission . . . . again , it's really weird to read back to a time when I was not feeling so great . I do know that I've come a very long way since then . I have dealt with and accepted my illness , but I will never forget the road that brought me here . 

I'm Fine.....Keep Telling Yourself That.     Last night my body gave out.Had plans to go to a church event ,"The Art of Worship".Been looking forward to it all week.I just couldn't get my body to get up.I was so drained of all energy.I looked over to Emily's room and it was dark. She was getting her much needed sleep.We've been exhausted running on empty pretending everything is fine.
   I look around my room full of unpacked boxes.Can't even see the carpet.We moved in September and I've yet to unpack.Every room is done except my bedroom.How ironic.Instead of tackling the problem all I'm doing is shoving boxes from one corner to the next.When am I going to deal with th…

Simply Cavemen

What is the cavemen style of eating ? It is a lifestyle of reverting back to the natural foods of fruits , vegetables , meat and nuts .

I see the Caveman  Lifestyle everywhere . It's called by many different names , but basically it's just eating healthier and staying away from greasy , fast food .  People seem to have a deep desire to change their eating habits and become healthier , which is good , because we are a fat country ! 

Have we embraced this cavemen style of living ? Not entirely . We have adopted many of the practices , but we have a problem with doing away of pasta and cheese . Emily is a vegetarian  and 
the Caveman Lifestyle endorses meat and veggies . Her diet would be pretty bland with only veggies . 

Eating healthy is nothing new to us . Our eating habits have changed drastically in the last three years alone . At work , they're constantly checking out my latest root or veggie they've never seen or heard of before , mostly with a grimace on their faces .…