Saturday, May 11, 2013

Icky Stuff Of Life Versus Desires Of The Heart

DISCLAIMER ALERT: The Pretty Images of this Post have nothing to do with the Content!
If you don't feel comfortable reading about the Icky Stuff of Life... feel free to just look at the Pretty Pictures.

My Blog began as a Personal Online Journal and Journey... another Artistic Outlet and my Emotional Retreat and Happy Place.   But also a Place that I could just come to and Write candidly about and Release into the Universe whatever was on my Heart and Mind, good or bad... Keeping it Real and True to Self regardless of the Topic of the Day.  
So in the Beginning, when I could Imagine that few would ever show up to Share this Space I had Created in the Land Of Blog, Transparency wasn't so much Considered.  I didn't ever feel Guarded about Post Content... though I recognized that anything put out into Cyberspace now fails to remain Exclusive or Private.  Such is the dichotomy of Blogging and I accept that risk of being Vulnerable at times... it's my Choice what I put out here and choose to Disclose and Share. 
But now that many have showed up to Share the Journey I do often Consider the Transparency Issue and Personal Privacy more... discerning what to Share and what to Write about.  And that part I can sometimes Wrestle with... because I'm not just Writing about myself... so the Privacy and Dignity of others could be at stake and my Natural Instinct is to be Protective of those I Love and are in my Inner Circle.  Yet Life has Baggage and Trials... Garbage and Icky Stuff along with the Blessings and Joys... so should all that which can be negative and stressful stay stuffed and hidden in Privacy and cloaked in Secrecy?  Humnnnn... weighty stuff to mull over... how Best to Deal with it all for Self-Preservation?
Yet not Dealing with Issues of Life in a way that Works for me and is Healthy can be difficult at best and at worse become overwhelming and despairing if I go it Lone Ranger Style and Stoic.  Though I've never been one to put up a facade, I've always tended to be Private about Personal Stuff... especially the Icky Stuff of Life versus Desires of the Heart. 

 It's so easy to Write about and Share the Desires of one's Heart isn't it?   The Passions and the Positive things we can and want to Share and Rejoice with others about or brag and boast about Enjoying, Having and Doing.  And basically I'm an Incurable Optimist... a Joyful and Positive Person on Purpose and by Choice even when Dealing with the Icky Stuff of Life, so it's not always apparent except to those that Need to Know.

And do you REALLY Need to Know?  Probably not.  But do I REALLY need to sometimes get it out here as a Personal Release and Sanity Preserver... Absolutely!  And after all... really it's a Story all of us Share whether Privately or Publicly... every one of us has those Icky parts of Life we're Dealing with, whatever they may be... in varying degrees and Seasons of Life.

So... how we Best Cope is entirely up to us Individually... this just happens to be part of how I do it... what I have found Works for me.   And quite often I've found also Ministers to Others who may be Sharing similar Struggles and have a Point of Reference with the Content. 

That's the often Unexpected aspect of Sharing Icky Stuff... your Misery can quite often be your Ministry and you don't even know it until you get the Feedback of how it helped someone else and made them feel less Alone in their Pain or Trials of Life.  And made you feel less Alone and Socially Alienated or Outcast as well. 

There is a Camaraderie in fact with Shared Experiences, whether they be Good or Bad.  But often we Conceal the Bad because we can Feel and have the Illusion that everyone else is Enjoying Rainbows and Gumdrops all or even most of the time while we're mired in the Ick and trying to break Free from it and have the Victory.  If we've got a heavy Burden of Ick it can seem quite Unfair... even though you know that Life was never Promised to be Fair... otherwise bras wouldn't come in sizes and all that other totally Unfair Stuff! 

  And so every so often I finally decide to Post about something that I've previously kept Private or Semi-Private... or at least have never Released into Cyberspace where it really can't be retracted.  And so far I've had no regrets about that because I never do it without Careful Deliberation beforehand and the potential Consequences of Purposeful Vulnerability concerning Our Story and the hand we've been dealt and are up against as a Family. 

There are more than a few Serious Issues we've been Dealing with and they've been piling up and intensifying... and so my Release was just a matter of Timing really before I risked imploding!!!  That would be way messier than just putting some of the Ick in a Blog Post... and so I got past the point of Caring how it might be Received really.  I was Dealing with a Triple Wammy of Ick in a forty-eight hour Timespan and my other Coping Mechanisms were cracking and faltering under the Pressure and Weight of it all as I Processed it and Wondered about possible Solutions, IF there were any!?

I'm a 'Take it One Day at a Time... Live In The Moment' Type of Gal... I try not to look behind or forward especially when Dealing with Ick.  The Strength and Faith for Today will just have to be enough.   I'll lean on the Lord to see me through and stand on His Promises and Word... even though the Unknown Factor can still be quite terrifying and paralyzing at times.   We will recognize the Elephants in the room and just eat them one bite at a time even though the whole meal looks like way too much for one person to even remotely Consider taking on!

And so here we go... with my gargantuan meal... which looks nothing like this yummy plate I prepared recently from the Fruits of my Garden Labors.  But I Prepared myself with Nourishment for the Body, Spirit and Soul beforehand... because I knew the rest wasn't gonna be Pretty and though I needed to hear it all I didn't want to hear any of it.   Or have to Deal with any of it either.

I wanted desperately to be in that Blissful State of Denial... rather than the State of Arizona Dealing with all this Ick regarding those most Precious to me.  Feeling totally powerless to have any or even some of the Answers and Solutions since much of it is out of my Control and regards Serious Health Issues... Physical and Mental Health Issues... Ick!!!   Did I mention that I tend to be a Control Freak?  And so having things out of my Control and Surrendering even to a Higher Power I Trust is Scary Stuff when the stakes are so high!  I want Closed Doors Opened and Opened Doors Closed. 

Prayers have gone up... some Answered... some not... and so we wait on the Outcomes... whatever they might be?  The Unknown... what we might have to still go through and Endure... to that Unknown Destination that awaits us?   And so I try to just Focus on the Positives around me as a Distraction and to still Feel Appreciative, Grateful and Thankful for what the Ick hasn't touched and hasn't threatened to take away in my Day and in our Lives.  Focusing not on what is Lost... but what we have Left and God can still Use to His Glory and a Testament to His Goodness.

There's a lot of that around to Focus upon as the rest Processes and Perculates through my Thoughts... as I digest it all, one bite at a time in the Moment.  Not thinking about what Tomorrow holds or what 'was' Yesterday and no longer 'is' Today.  Just... get... through... Today... which can be Exhausting and Challenging enough!  It's perhaps a Survival Technique to go on Autopilot and not Feel or sit with my Feelings too long just now because there's still too much to do and I'm Responsible for keeping together and holding down.   Falling apart isn't an Option since I'm the Primary Caregiver of several Loved Ones going through the Trials and Torment of Health and Mental Health Issues.  Somebody has to remain standing... might as well be me.

It's Messy... REAL Messy.  It's been Months of requesting Increased Services and waiting upon Agencies and Approvals and Action and Sufficient Resources to move Forward and Receive Help.  I have to Believe Help is coming... otherwise I might want to give up.  I've done all I can do and know to do... that is not enough... not even close.

It's still taking me a long time to get to the Trifecta of Ick hasn't it?  The Specifics... the Details... the total Transparency you've been waiting for if you've read even this far... and I desperately need to Release in Blog Therapy. 

I'm doing it in layers, like peeling an Onion... makes you Cry and yet to get to the Heart of anything is a Process that isn't always clear cut, fast, short or easy.  To be Healing and Theraputic it must be done as it unfolds Naturally and Willingly, one step at a time, walking it out.   So it's not an Intentional Teaser... it's a Process I need to go through for myself, whether anyone else comes along on the Journey or not.  This is all about me right now with due respect to anyone else that might get something out of it... and I Hope you do if you need to and it was Meant to Be.

And so it is with this Post about the Icky Stuff... its like Revealing a Wound that isn't at all Pretty and maybe nobody wants to look at... not even us... but like a Train Wreck, look we do, don't we?  Bad News actually draws Attention like nothing else... that's why the Media rarely reports the Good Stuff.  But here in the Land of Blog it tends to be more Idyllic since it is the Happy Place and Retreat or Escape of so many of us... and we try to Insulate it from the Icky Stuff of Life that is always so Evident elsewhere.

So in the Icky Trifecta we'll go in Order... starting with what we Dealt with first... at the Beginning of the forty-eight hour recent grueling Icky Stuff Marathon.  Just before Mother's Day... how appropriate!   You see the Memo Board above?  That was Secretly written by one of the G-Kid Force... it matters not which one it is really... but it Touched me because it is a Lofty Goal for the Dynamic Duo... they rarely get along as each is battling their own Health Issues and Personal Demons.  That's the Ideal... the Reality isn't anything close to that daily, this is a High Maintenance Crew and I'm often the Mediator or Referee in the Mix of it.   But the fact it is a Longing... a Goal, well, that Uplifted my Spirits as I Deal with the Reality of none of them being quite able yet to get along and play well with others.

You see it's not just at Home... they also have to Function in the Real World as well... which includes Others... and that's where Children with Special Needs often come up against the Greatest of Challenges.  Especially at School... and so we have the IEP Meetings and Consults with Teachers that don't always go well because I cannot change the nature of the beast... it is what it is.  Prince R has what I like to refer to as 'A Beautiful Mind'... if you've seen the Russell Crow Movie then you understand in part what that means.  I've never watched the Movie... I don't have to... we Live it with our Grandson Daily.  We Lived it with his Mother too... and we and she Pray for a different Outcome for her Precious Son.

But as with ALL Health Issues we don't get to Select and Choose what we'll be Dealing with and must Endure or might be damaged by Infirmity of Body or Mind.  For some things there are no known Cures yet and some damage is seemingly irreversable unless Miraculous Healing and Intervention takes place... so I Hope for the latter since Modern Medical Prognosis is always so Grim and I hesitate to Receive that.

So Prince R's New IEP {Individual Educational Program} is attempting to unlock the Mysteries that are a barrier to his Educational Process of this Beautiful Mind.  A Mind that tests at near Genius level and yet doesn't translate into good grades or good behavior or a Connection with the Learning Process or his peers most of the time.  We're trying not to resort to Special Ed... which does not typically meet the Mentally Ill at their Point of Need in the Public Educational System.  Actually his inability to complete or even do his Work in School is the least of Prince R's problems or Issues, I recognize this. 

 But to reach maximum potential towards Independant Living and future Employment, it is of coarse a necessity that he be Educated some kind of way.  Otherwise he's screwed and I know this.  The IEP did not go well... I didn't expect it to actually... we can't 'fix' him and I no longer even know what to say or do, I don't have the Answers or Solution.  Increased Services are Approved now... FINALLY... but pending... and the Mental Health System is a slow moving beheamoth.  He wants to be a Scientist or Inventor... and his Beautiful Mind has that Amazing Potential, I Believe that with all my Heart... if we can only Reach him somewhere in there where he is often Lost and Checked Out.  I Encourage him to just be all that he can possibly be, Gramma has High Hopes even if nobody else does.

And now on to the Teacher Meeting and Ick regarding Princess T... who is on an intense regimen of Steroid Treatments for Serious Health Issues so that she can but Breathe.   Breathing is Important... without being able to Breathe it wouldn't matter that she can't focus, sit still in class, complete her work or not be tired or pleasant anyway.  She still must sleep sitting upright and have regular Breathing Treatments... she still wakes up in a panic often due to sleep apnea and the sensation that her extremities are 'shrinking' or 'growing' as her little body struggles to keep vital organs nourished with life giving Oxygen.  School is not going well for her right now... she's Smart and can do the Work... but there are her specific barriers... not all of which are known.  I may not have mentioned it before, but I choose to mention it now... The G-Kid Force Duo are Meth Babies... that came with a lot of baggage healthwise.  For anyone Touched by Meth use it leaves a Trail of Tears.  That's all I have to say about that.

I Hope Princess T can Receive her Education whilst dealing with Serious Health Issues... but it's a lot for a Seven year old to shoulder and most days end in Tears... mine and hers.  She has gained only about a pound in two years and her Specialists are trying to Assist us to help her Thrive and Grow Stronger... it is a Process... a difficult one.  We just Show Up every Day and do our best.

And now on to the Big Kahuna... the News that almost took me down... since I'm weary and tired anyway without even more Drama and Bad News.  The Teacher's Meetings were uncomfortable and difficult enough... but nothing compared to the Doctor Meetings at the VA Hospital with The Man at the end of the forty-eight Hours of Ickiness.  Again, in my Head and Heart I knew the Outcome was not going to be a good one... but are you ever really Prepared to hear it said out loud and face it?  No... not really...

Since the last major Stroke and Heart Attack it has definitely been a Game Changer... I have had to Learn to Love and Accept The Man he now is because The Man he was is gone... and I haven't really had Time to Grieve over that Loss or fully Adjust to it.  He hasn't either, only he seems more oblivious or unaware of the extent of the Changes and Limitations it Imposes... or perhaps Terrified of them and so he Resists adaptations, advice and Help.


The Elephant is in the room and it cannot be Ignored... but Flash Points make it difficult to discuss rationally some of the Changes that must be made.  It's Scary Stuff and affects us all... there will be lots of Doctor Appointments and Tests... many of which he's Failing and that just Illuminates the deficiencies and Changes the Stroke has likely caused.  As I sat in the haze of listening to hardening of arteries in the brain, neuropathy of the extremities and all the technical terms that are explanations for the falls, the confusion, the moodiness, memory lapses, emotional outbursts, regression and a host of other symptoms... I felt sick to my stomach actually.  How far will this progress and how rapidly?

How much Time do we have and how long can I meet him at his Point of Need at Home?  What Medical Restrictions are and will be Imposed and will he Embrace or Resist them?  We have briefly discussed Alternative Living Arrangements... The Old Soldier's Home and all that.  We Hope it does not come to that?  I don't even know what 'all that' would entail?  Can't be good... and it's so far away... so daily visits would not be possible and I don't have a Peace about that really.  So I hesitate to even Think about it until the Verdict is in and we must Deliberate.

I have been through this all before... some Years ago with Dad before he Passed... and quite recently with Mom.  It was Horrible... beyond Horrible in fact... but at least she was in her 80's when Independant Living and inability for Family to Care for her and meet her at her Point of Need became our Reality.  Dad Transitioning quickly from Home to Nursing Home to Hospital to Hospice to Death went quicker... but no less Emotional or Easy.  

Both Resisted too... and lashed out... I understand it wasn't Personal even though it is those of us who Love them most that must make the Difficult Decisions on their behalf and Endure the hostilities and perceived blame when it comes to that.  It is a weighty decision to make for someone else and not to be taken lightly... to determine their Future involuntarily and Forever this side of Time and Eternity. And the Process was Agonizing and the Costs Prohibitive and far beyond our means... until Assistance and Eligibility were Approved.

For an Aging Parent it was difficult but different... for a Spouse the Prospect looms even larger because you're Living it Together more Intimately.  You Intend to Grow Old Together and not be Separated by Infirmity or the Icky Stuff of Life.  It Scares me to think otherwise.  Especially since The Man is my Help-Mate, my Soul-Mate, my Best Friend... even if merely Emotionally Supportive and Present it Helps in the Raising of the G-Kid Force.  We've still got many years of Child Rearing to Complete... to Prepare them for Independant Living once they're Grown.   THEN we can Die in Peace, knowing the Job got done to the best of our Abilities and Resources.

I don't want to contemplate doing the Single Parent Thing again... I spent several Years in my Youth Single Parenting... and also during The Man's lengthy Military Career every time they Deployed him... and then again after Retirement when he went to Alaska for most of the Year to do Seasonal Work to Suppliment our Income.  I Feel like I'm 'Done' with Single Parenting Small Children or Teens... I don't have it in me anymore... Age, Strength, Resources and Stamina are not what they used to be... they are in fact a Shadow of what they used to be.  See how I've suddenly made this all about me?  *Smiles*  Yes, I admit, I'm Wallowing a bit... I need to... so that I don't have to feel so Scared for everyone else having only me to rely upon!    So they REALLY need God because I know my Fears and how I Feel on the Inside about it all.

I know how sick to the pit of my stomach it all makes me Feel because I am painfully aware of how Inadequate and Inept I Feel to hold it down and keep it all together as we become mired in the Ick Together as a Family.  I saw The Man looking to me to Help him answer the Questions they posed to him to determine if Dementia or Alzheimers were setting in... he looked REAL Scared.  My Rock, my Tough Marine who always made me Feel so Safe and Secure and has Dealt with more Brutal Stuff in Combat than most Hollywood Action Heros have ever Pretended to... and Survived it all.  But not without a Cost... protecting our Freedoms isn't Free to those that Served... it Costs them Dearly. 


I couldn't Help him answer those stupid simple Questions, that Lesson in absolute Humility... though Telepathically I Hoped the Right Answers I was Thinking might Transcend the haze his Thoughts and hesitant mostly wrong answers were Clouded by.   I could only Encourage he answer to the best of his Ability and make him Know that I'm Ride or Die to the End... whatever that End may be?  I don't think this Story is having a Happy Ending... and that Grieves me... I like Happy Endings.  He basically failed the Oral Test... I knew it before the Doctor did the Final Consultation of the Results, though it could have been a Worse Result, his Score wasn't absolutely Dismal... yet.  Lord knows what all the other Tests will Reveal... I'm not sure I want to know.  And I made a Secret Call to change some of my Shifts at Work to Accommodate the present limitations.  I'd like to Pretend for a little while that everything will be Okay.

And so after what seemed like an Eternity of Tests and Doctors and Lab Work we went to our Favorite Restaurant for Lunch... and amid the Ambiance we Cherish and some small talk, over a delicious Meal we avoided the uncomfortable Thoughts and Feelings I'm sure we both had after the Ordeal.  Just Living in the Moment... and for that small block of Time it was a Good Moment... an almost Normal Moment... a Cherished Moment to Savor and have a Happy Memory of...

And as I glanced to the Right of our Table there was that empty Table... the one that was Mom's Favorite spot and we always Shared when we came there for a nice Meal and a Good Time when she was still able to get out inbetween what seemed like an Eternity of Tests and Doctors and Lab Work.

  And it brought back a Flood of Happy and Good Memories and Moments too... and even though her Presence wasn't there in the Physical Realm, I felt that she might be Remembering those Good Times and Special Moments too... and after all... that's the Stuff that makes Life worth Living isn't it?  Regardless of the Icky Moments and Stuff...

And in the Writing and Sharing of this I now have a Peace about it all, even with twinges of Terror at times... because it has been Released out into the Universe, Prayed Upon and Surrendered in Absolute Faith and Trust.  As it should be...

Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian


  1. Lovely petit-point cushions.

  2. Oh Dawn, you have so much on your plate right now. Because any words seem so inadequate from me, I am reminded of this Bible verse:

    Matthew 11:28-30
    Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

    Prayers for your husband, your grandchildren, and for you friend.......God already has it all worked out.

  3. Wishing you as much love, peace, ease and healing for all of you that I can muster. We women are really amazing, aren't we? All the stuff we have to figure out and take care of. I am honored to be your friend. Xoxo Jenny

  4. My name is Victoria I have been following your blog now for a year or so?..So this post was just amazing!! I am crying now,I dont mean tht in a bad way.I just have tremendous adoration for this post of transparency...Your heart wide OPEN!!...That TAKES one special human being to be that Transparent!!! ...I want to tell you thank you!!!! Sharing can be 'HEALING'...If we could be more like you 'Dawn'..this world would be a better place.... And the commandment..You shall love your neighbor as your self would be P.O.C..."Piece of cake"...From my heart thank you...Sincerely,Victoria


A life touched by God always ends in touching others. - Erwin McManus

I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars. - Og Mandino (1923-1996)

For creativity to flourish one should try to look at everything as though it were being seen for the first or the last time. - Quote from "A Thousand Paths To Creativity" by David Baird

Is what I'm about to say an improvement on silence? ~ Galen Pearl